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Thread: 1978 Ford Courier Build

  1. #1

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    1978 Ford Courier Build

    I bought this truck for a daily driver and parts hauler. I have 10 other projects and didn't really plan for another. I picked it up only intending to do the body work and paint it, that was it. The exhaust was cut off at the end of the cab when I bought it. I pieced together an exhaust to get it to pass emissions. After the fifth time trying to pass, I finally passed and got to register it. A few days later the engine started knocking. I began looking for a 2.3 to put in it, couldn't find one. I decided I'd go a little different and look for a wrecked SVO/Turbocoupe... or a newer 4.6. After 3 months of getting the run around from people or just missing a sale, I decided to go back home and pull one of my spare 350s out of storage.
    I've always bit a bit of a purist, and a Ford fan, so it took a while for me to convince myself to put a GM engine in it. I went back home and picked up the engine that was easiest to load at the time. Just my luck, it got uncovered at some point and filled with water. I didn't know at the time I picked it up. Once I got it back here and tore into it, it was a mess. From here, the pictures kinda tell the rest.
    I'll start at the beginning and work up till now. Enjoy.

    Originally when I bought it:
    Ford 2.3
    80s mustang 2.3 rebuilt head and new cam
    5 speed transmission
    Lowered with 3" blocks (rear) cut springs (front)

    Current work:
    '75 Chevy 350 -4 bolt
    WCT5 transmission

    Bottom End-
    Block- Bored .060
    -New pistons
    -Reconditioned rods
    Crank- 10-10 grind
    -ARP Main bolts

    Top end-
    Heads- Rebuilt stock.
    -All new parts (valves, seats, seals, guides, springs)
    -Magnafluxed and resurfaced
    Intake- Weiand power plus
    Camshaft- Comp Cams Extreme Energy XE262H (advertised I-262, E-270)
    -Comp roller tip rockers, lifters, push rods

    Exhaust/Fuel delivery/Suspension all to be determined...


    It's still got a ways to go, but I'm hoping to be driving it next summer.






    545706_418512901510281_802566602_n.jpg 538524_418513044843600_173083646_n.jpg



    Had to rebuild the carb and do some spring cleaning






    Started to do a little body work while it was still running.


    536801_433879693306935_1566446580_n.jpg 562204_433879879973583_165979311_n.jpg



    205240_458306950864209_82065080_n.jpg 295274_487014181326819_1242419519_n.jpg



    welded all the trim holes


    575229_458917447469826_1304743836_n.jpg


    uncovered the old mirror holes and welded them



    403458_458931934135044_701152777_n.jpg
    Last edited by camoit; 12-22-2012 at 12:23 AM. Reason: Formating

  2. #2

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    Last edited by camoit; 12-22-2012 at 12:13 AM. Reason: Formating

  3. #3

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    Last edited by camoit; 12-21-2012 at 11:59 PM. Reason: Formating

  4. #4

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    Passed the final test in ALS today and rather than going home to sleep like I wanted, I decided instead to put some of the bottom end together.



    61870_539241866104050_1626456640_n.jpg 3884_539242062770697_679955643_n.jpg




    68993_539344986093738_1190532798_n.jpg



    Still has a while to go, but it's getting there.
    Last edited by camoit; 12-21-2012 at 11:52 PM. Reason: Formating

  5. #5



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    Look at the upper right side of the web page find the settings for your profile.
    Settings> Edit Options, and scroll down to "Miscellaneous", and by "Message Editor Interface" Click the box that says "Enhanced Interface." That will give you the option to upload to the site and use the URL thing.
    THEN when making a post you can just click the "Go Advanced" button Then look for this. When in the Advanced Editor you get the option to upload to the site.

    This Will help keep your posts out of moderation because of the links. tell you hit XX posts and are moved to a different user group.
    Members come and members go, But the board keeps track of them.
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  6. #6

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    Heads are on and intake is temp installed. Going to pull it off the stand and connect the trans to start mocking it up on the frame.


    Last edited by camoit; 12-21-2012 at 11:47 PM. Reason: formating

  7. #7

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    ~And this is where I'm at as of today~

    Had the day off today, so I got back to work on the truck.

    Lined up the engine/trans to see how close it was. The pictures are after I lifted it back up a little. The oil pan set on the cross member and there was no way it would even come close to fitting.


    150902_542524012442502_110200066_n.jpg 382035_542524059109164_220065312_n.jpg





    Cut the center of the cross member out.

    524866_542589779102592_840599018_n.jpg 481439_542589812435922_1770970196_n.jpg



    Set the engine back in. Now I have to cut the frame around the bell housing. It's too wide to drop down in there. The starter hump and the slave bracket rest against the sides and won't let it go down.

    I'll also have to get different engine mounts. These are sitting on the frame right now, and I still want the engine to set about 4 inches lower than it is.




    It's going to be fun come time to do the exhaust. The frame rails are directly under where the exhaust would turn down.


    602943_542601119101458_610873719_n.jpg
    Last edited by camoit; 12-21-2012 at 11:42 PM.

  8. #8

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    Ah. Sorry, I copied 90% of that from one of my other build threads. I usually just upload the photos to my facebook and copy the img url and use the code to post them. Most sites limit how many pictures you can upload.
    But... I don't see "Message Editor Interface". There's "Miscellaneous" and then attachments under that.

  9. #9



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    It's there. This will make thumb nails automatically so you can make a clean looking thread. You also get more options like under line, centering page brakes, tables, things like that. Once you figure it out you will see the potential of building pages. It's cool.

    Settings> Edit Options, and scroll down to "Miscellaneous", and by "Message Editor Interface" Click the box that says "Enhanced Interface. There is 3 different choses.
    Members come and members go, But the board keeps track of them.
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  10. #10

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    Got it.
    It's under 'My Account' > General Settings > Miscellaneous Options.

    Thanks.

  11. #11



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    sweet... I'm going through it now and fixing the pictures. Formatting is the key, that and having a nice truck like yours.


    Hows it look now?????
    Last edited by camoit; 12-22-2012 at 12:24 AM.
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  12. #12

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    Much better. Thanks.

  13. #13


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    You got some pics of the inside of the cab? Ie dash. Lol.
    1989 Mitsubishi mightymax; 1990 4g63 6 bolt swap: malhe 9.1 pistons, eagle h beam rods, acl race bearings, rebuilt head, bc spring and retainers, evo 3 16g, aem afpr, Maft, 3" gm maf blow through, walbro 255 fuel pump, hks ssq bov, evo 8 fmic, coil over plug, FIC 850 injectors, dsmlink, apexi avcr, AEM eugo, s90 throttlebody, FRH intake manifold, competition clutch kit and lightened flywheel. LT1 T56 in the works, RIP km132.
    Why a mightymax? Why not? 18 psi FTW.

  14. #14


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    Nice project but.............. should have gone with a 302/351W with a T56 To bad you are so far from me I have a 79 2.3L turbo with an 83 EFI turbo set up that's completely rebuilt and should push just over 200hp that has been sitting around for 10 years from a project that got sold.

  15. #15

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    My Christmas presents came in today. Now I can finish putting the valve train together and close up the front of the engine.

    525040_543115785716658_1710411185_n.jpg


    These are the only shots of the interior I have
    538524_418513044843600_173083646_n.jpg 558699_418513138176924_1647811984_n.jpg 383403_418513198176918_1798637310_n.jpg 295081_418513268176911_1651073571_n.jpg





    Quote Originally Posted by Fordubishi View Post
    Nice project but.............. should have gone with a 302/351W with a T56 To bad you are so far from me I have a 79 2.3L turbo with an 83 EFI turbo set up that's completely rebuilt and should push just over 200hp that has been sitting around for 10 years from a project that got sold.
    I think you mean, I should've done whatever I wanted, which I am. It's a common mistake people make, but I appreciate the effort.
    I did want to stick with a Ford engine. I thought about putting my 351C in it, but then I'd have to find something else for the cougar.

  16. #16



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    I have a new quick time bell housing that will adapt a ford small block to a T56. $300.00 NIB it's an extra, if you wanted it.
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  17. #17


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    lol Yeah I have a 72 351C 2V out of my Cougar sitting under the bench looking for a home but the 302 was a much better fit in the D-50 and I didn't have $10,000 to build the 351C the way I wanted to.

    looking at the pic's can you go with block hugger headers and drop the exhaust just behind the engine mounts something like these

  18. #18

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    Quote Originally Posted by Fordubishi View Post
    lol Yeah I have a 72 351C 2V out of my Cougar sitting under the bench looking for a home but the 302 was a much better fit in the D-50 and I didn't have $10,000 to build the 351C the way I wanted to.

    looking at the pic's can you go with block hugger headers and drop the exhaust just behind the engine mounts something like these
    Ha, I have a 72 351C 2V sitting for the same reason. lol ... and because I was in Okinawa the last 3 years, so I couldn't do anything with it.
    The block huggers have been tried, they still don't clear the rails. There's been one guy I've found that was able to use a factory pair of manifolds, but I forgot what vehicle they were for.
    Most other people run them into the wheel wells or run them forward, then under the cross member and back.
    I have a set of old headers I'm going to chop up to see what I can do, then make something permanent.

  19. #19


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    Yeah that's what I had to do with a set of BBK shorty's to clear the frame and steering box. Originally I used stock manifolds, passengers side was an 81 Crown Vic and Drivers side was 72 Bronco. Took a few trips back and forth from the wreckers but it worked. Cheap pipe to pick up is some Dynomax J and U bends they are a hell of a lot cheaper the pieces for "Build your own" stuff. You can take a look at WWW.photobucket.com/fordubishi there is some pic's of the mods to the drivers side header.

  20. #20

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    You may not have realized this, but that's a whole hell of a lot of purple and pink. I like it. Where did you manage to find high temp purple?
    Thanks for the info and pics. Your frame and the courier frame look to be fairly similar so that should help out a little.
    For the steering, I'm hoping to have a little extra room near rear cylinder since I'll be converting to a front mounted rack. I'll just need enough space to slide the column straight through.

  21. #21


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    You don't need "High Temp" paint on an engine,I just used BASF base/Clear as the engine should never reach a temp higher then 280 degrees and that WAY to hot. The only place a High temp paint is needed is on the exhaust manifolds or headers as they can push 1800 degrees.I have painted the rear drums on vehicles and they work for a few years till the paint starts to flake off but that's do to the properties of the cast iron not the paint.

  22. #22



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    On the rack and pinion here is somthing that you may want to look at. Just in case you need to go with front pinion.

    http://www.mightyram50.net/phpbb3/vi...p?f=122&t=1522
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  23. #23

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    I was feeling lazy today so I didn't get much done.

    Installed the cam, timing kit and cover, lifters, push rods and rockers. I still have to do the initial adjustment on the valves though.



    230256_543633598998210_490907950_n.jpg (I have a picture of the rockers installed, but it says the file is too big...)


    Quote Originally Posted by Fordubishi View Post
    You don't need "High Temp" paint on an engine,I just used BASF base/Clear as the engine should never reach a temp higher then 280 degrees and that WAY to hot. The only place a High temp paint is needed is on the exhaust manifolds or headers as they can push 1800 degrees.I have painted the rear drums on vehicles and they work for a few years till the paint starts to flake off but that's do to the properties of the cast iron not the paint.
    Interesting. I've never tried using base/clear on an engine. I've done it on brakes, but I never compared the two. Makes sense.

    Quote Originally Posted by camoit View Post
    On the rack and pinion here is somthing that you may want to look at. Just in case you need to go with front pinion.

    http://www.mightyram50.net/phpbb3/vi...p?f=122&t=1522
    Thanks! That could come in handy down the road. I'll keep that in mind.

  24. #24

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    For Christmas, I did some more work. Cut the sections out of the frame to fit the bell housing and got the engine mounted.
    Had to cut the mounts nearly all the way down to get them between the frame with enough room to mount the brackets.
    I'm going to start on the trans cross member/mount this weekend.

    15423_544265415601695_625790931_n.jpg15524_544214698940100_901732258_n.jpg
    734551_544683742226529_1377864721_n.jpg398666_544756625552574_801776392_n.jpg

    They look crooked in the picture, but they're lined up. Don't worry.
    301831_544756848885885_178429687_n.jpg

  25. #25



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    Oh ya if you look in here you might find some things you may need. It's nearly all the links to places I found things to do my build. From tabs and bushings, to milling machines.

    http://www.mightyram50.net/vbulletin...-used-in-build
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