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Old 12-04-2010, 06:56 PM
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'85 302 decent?? (fuel injection)

here's the scenario: i'd like to build a 'rod in about 5 years when my son is old enough to be involved... in the meantime, we need a (cheap) 2nd car. i'm looking at an '85 merc grand marq wagon w/ a 302 (windsor)-- my thought is, get 2-3 years out of it as a 2nd car, then pull the motor for the project rod. is this a good candidate? only 85K original miles but from my quick & dirty 'net research, the throttle-body injection isn't ideal.

* question 1: is this CFI engine good enough for a first-time rod project (not looking to build a HP monster)?
* question 2: how realistic would it be to either convert to old-skool carb, or, upgrade to modern EFI?

thanks in advance!

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Old 12-05-2010, 01:14 PM
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That motor would be fine. If you want a carbed engine then you just need to replace the intake manifold with a carb intake and put a carb on top.
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Old 12-06-2010, 02:57 AM
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efi swaps have been done before on these cfi motors.
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Old 12-06-2010, 06:55 AM
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While it is not the best choice for a 302 Ford based car/rod as it comes out of the donor vehicle, it can be worked up to something very nice with a few bucks and some time. As far as turning it into a carbed engine, not only will the intake need to be changed, the front timing cover, water pump, cam eccentric and drive pin plus add a mech fuel pump and possibly a different ignition system. An EFI will work as well - they began with the speed density in '86, tho a mass flow version is best and they began a couple years later.

Oh yeah, the AVATAR of mine - that engine began life as an EFI version and was converted to a carb.


The heads are no prizes, but will work as long as you don't expect high horsepower. They will need to be rebuilt if the donor car has 100K plus miles - they will usually have well worn valve guides plus puny springs. This is the time when you can replace them with some GT40P's from a Ford SUV and relatively inexpensively.

Now - why wait five years? Draw up your plan on what you want the rod to be and how you are going to get there with the base car, new parts as well as money (more $$ then you think )
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Old 12-06-2010, 11:10 AM
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actually, getting that engine to run a carb is not hard. doesn't even take an intake manifold if you don't mind a 2bbl carb.. just use an electric pump.. but the '84-'85 CFI is probably the worst fuel injection ever. it works, it's just nothing for performance. the cam is small and the heads are terrible... but some E7's ( '87+ HO ) or GT-40/40P's ( '95-'01 Explorer V8 ) will work just fine
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Old 12-06-2010, 04:59 PM
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For my goodies, I take an old quaker oats container with a hole in the lid, and I "feed the quaker" about 5-10 bucks a week.

Start now and you'll have some good project funds in 5 years.
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