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Offline waldo786

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6 cylinder pinto questions
« on: January 10, 2012, 11:59:19 PM »
So right now I have my grandfather's old 1976 Ford Pinto Wagon he bought new in '76.  My father had someone do a restoration on it back a few years ago, but it's all rusted out again.  Lucky for him I've been interested in cars and took a class to do learn how to do body work.  The car has the original 2.3L in it, but I want to change it.  I know Pinto's came with a 6cyl and I'm wondering if anyone has switched in a newer 3.8L fuel injected v6 with overdrive into one of these cars?  The engine's are the same size so I imagine it's as hard as putting in a later turbo 2.3L into a car that has the 2.3L now.  Anyone have any ideas on this.  I want a car that has decent power, but not a v8 swap, so this seems like a good compromise. 

Offline Back in Blue

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Re: 6 cylinder pinto questions
« Reply #1 on: January 21, 2012, 02:16:55 PM »
Wish there were some responses here, cause I've been wondering the same thing!!!  :-\     
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Offline waldo786

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Re: 6 cylinder pinto questions
« Reply #2 on: January 21, 2012, 02:21:26 PM »
Well I realized I did make a mistake as the 3.8L is not the same as the 2.8L although not sure dimensionally how different they are.  I can't imagine they are too terribly different and if you can fit a v8 in these cars, I'm assuming a six this size would fit no problem.  I'll probably just end up saving enough money and taking it to a shop and have them do it.  You can find these engines pretty cheap, and hopefully it wouldn't take more than a week to install it and trouble shoot, but I don't know. 

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Re: 6 cylinder pinto questions
« Reply #3 on: January 22, 2012, 02:19:30 AM »
the 2.8 and 3.8 are hugely different. I was at one time interested in doing this swap in my 75 Mercury bobcat wagon. I've done some research into the Idea. at least with the  with the V6 you can use the 1995 S/C Thunderbird/cougar motor and trans. the standard 2.8l v6 isn't a bolt on.. You would be going from the c3/c4 to an AOD/E trans, unless you can find an earlier AOD trans. I dont like the AOD/E trans personally. if you choose to persue this please keep us updated, and if anyone finds my information incorrect, please post the correct info, this is only from my own research.

Offline moonman

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Re: 6 cylinder pinto questions
« Reply #4 on: January 22, 2012, 01:03:17 PM »
hi, I'm swapping a 4.0 v6 into my 77 hatchback.
they are related to the 2.8 v6 that were in the Pinto wagons.
They seem to be much closer as far as motor motor mounts . anybody out tried this let me know as any help will be welcome.
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Offline waldo786

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Re: 6 cylinder pinto questions
« Reply #5 on: January 31, 2012, 07:57:47 PM »
Great info guys, Moonman - let us know how your swap comes along!

Offline Jessi

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Re: 6 cylinder pinto questions
« Reply #6 on: February 01, 2012, 08:33:35 AM »
The degree of separation in the 3.8L is wider. Meaning that the engine is wider between the valve covers. The 2.8L is a 60 degree V6 while the 3.8L is a 90 degree. However that being said the 302 Windsor V8 is also a 90 degree engine. I am not sure what the deck height difference is between the 3.8L and the 5.0L, but going to a junkyard and taking some measurements would be first on my list. I own a 2.8L version of the Ford Pinto, and can tell you that the engine is a fairly tight fit on the passenger side, as the battery mounts on top of the pass. fender towards the back. Also the clearance between the exhaust manifold (pass. side) and the fender is maybe 1.5". On the Driver side the exhaust clearance to the fender is about the same. You also may run into clearance issues with the steering system. So just like with a 5.0 install, there will need to be some clearanceing. I think it would be doable, but there will also be issues with wiring according to what year of 3.8L you get. The 3.8L has a different ignition system, whereas you can use a duraspark setup with the 5.0 I am not sure if this is an option with the 3.8L (maybe someone else can pipe in here). So as with any "unnatural" swap there will be more to it than it looks. The expense of the whole install would be at least as much as a 5.0L if not a little more. You will need to determine for yourself if that is worth it to you.

As far as an overdrive tranny goes? I would think that since you maybe putting in a 3.8L you wouldn't really care what tranny you use, so I am going to through an idea out there for you. How about using the Chevrolet 700R4? it is a proven tranny, and advance adapters makes kits to mount ford engines to it. I am sure they make one that would work for you, but you would need to ask them. This tranny is a purely hydraulic transmission that is stand alone, so no computer.

Of course another idea to toss around (Hope I don't get booted for this ;D ) is the Buick 3.8L + 700r4 swap. The Ford 3.8L is rumored to be a very similar copy of the Buick 3.8L V6 (Buick had it first). The main difference between these engines is that Ford used aluminum heads whereas Buick used Iron. Of course there are bolt pattern differences, but that would not really matter if you were going to use the 700R4 tranny. If the engine could be physically mounted in the car, it would be a pretty strong combo and fairly reliable. In fact you could use the HEI ignition system or even a distributor-less system if you wanted. But this is purely blasphemous banter on my part ;D

If I were to ever do a swap I would be putting in a simple 302 backed by a 700r4. The duraspark powered 302 is not only simple but there is a huge amount of aftermarket support. Plus you get the experience all of these guys have with putting one in. Advance adapters makes a decently priced 302 to 700r4 tranny adapter that is super easy to install. Also you get the economy that the 700r4 gives with its overdrive gear, and a huge aftermarket following for it.
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Offline waldo786

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Re: 6 cylinder pinto questions
« Reply #7 on: February 01, 2012, 07:23:38 PM »
Those are some great things to consider.  Not sure if you would know but if I decided to keep my 2.3L I would hop it up with an esslinger head and intake.  First question, do these make a lot of lower end power or do I have to rev really high for these to get a lot of power?  I want to drive my car on the street and have a nice cruiser.  Also, could I use one of the later 2.3L mustang over drive transmissions from late 80's early 90's?