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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hey everyone. While I'm waiting the last parts for my conversion to be shipped, I decided to upgrade the suspension. Not sure if I will go with Detroit (I want it, just 9k is a bit painful for it when you see $4k solid options) but it will be prepared for a bigger block.

Since I'm doing it, I said it's better to upgrade the engine (currently 289 + 3 speed automatic) + tranny.

My ideal option:
450hp+ in base (without supercharger/turbos yet), that can be pushed further by adding those later on
Manual transmission 5 or 6 speed small enough to fit the tranny well without slicing car in the middle

It would be good to have AC solution on board but no drama if not
Definitely should support power brakes solution.

Not sure if it's important, I will prefer to switch to manual steering because it bugs me how easy steering wheel goes left and right. Doesn't feel like I have any control over it, too light.

If $12k budget for engine + tranny (new) sounds unrealistic, I probably would look for used options but new is always better :)

What should I get?
 

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It's important to understand what you're asking for, and what you'll get if you really shoot for these numbers.

This is about two things. One is streetability. A 289 cubic inch engine can realistically only produce so much torque. Horsepower is a function of torque at a given RPM; the higher the torque and RPM, the higher the horsepower. A 289 does not make much torque, due to its short stroke. So, to get 450 horsepower out of a 289 means you are going to be revving to some ungodly number - probably around 8-9k. A cam that makes good power at 8-9k RPMs is not going to be very fun to drive at low RPMs, and will probably not make very good mileage.

If you decide to go with an engine that makes lots of torque, and could be fairly mild at 450 horsepower - say a 460 Ford - then you're going to be adding a lot of weight to the nose, and compromising the ease of working on it later.

Even if you go with a 351 or stroker, and get an honest 450 horsepower, you would need to do a lot to the frame, suspension, and be very careful with your tire choices.

Which leads into the second thing: power to weight.

Most people rate a car by how much horsepower it's got. I mean, an 808 horsepower Dodge Demon is faster than a 450 horsepower Mustang, right? But the Demon weighs 4280 lbs. And 4280/808=5.29 lbs per horsepower.
If you have a Mustang that weighs only 2800 lbs, to hit that same power-to-weight ratio, you only need 529 horsepower. And keep in mind, you aren't going to have nanny-state computer-run antilock brakes and traction control. 450 horsepower in a Mustang is a pretty wild ride. The original engines in these cars typically only made about 150 RWHP. So you're talking about three times the factory power levels. To make that work, you really need to do a lot of other work to the car, just to keep it from twisting itself to pieces.
Oftentimes, a lighter car can often be faster than a heavy car even when they have identical power-to-weight ratios, so keep that in mind as well. Everything hinges on traction and the ability to put power to the ground.

Before you really tear into a project like this, think about how you actually want to drive the car. Then think about your budget. That will start to give you some realistic points from which to build.

And frankly, in these cars, a six speed would be a waste. All the transmission tunnel work and additional fuss doesn't help much. The Windsors have a nice broad torque curve, not a peaky powerband that needs help staying in a narrow window to do well. A good TKX or even a Toploader is often the better choice, offering excellent durability, shift quality, light weight, and ease of fitment.

Last but not least, think about how long you intend to keep the car. Is this a love affair for life, or more of a casual fling? If you're rich and don't mind throwing money down a hole, then just put in whatever you want for the drivetrain, and drive how you want. If it sucks, redo it till it doesn't. But if you're more interested in driving a particular way, and want a classic Mustang experience, perhaps it's better to look at what other people do who drive their car the same way, and follow some of their ideas and solutions instead of trying to apply hardware that hasn't been used in a Mustang often (or ever) because it doesn't fit without a lot of work.

And if you're serious about the 450 horsepower, don't forget seat belts and brakes!
 

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Hey everyone. While I'm waiting the last parts for my conversion to be shipped, I decided to upgrade the suspension. Not sure if I will go with Detroit (I want it, just 9k is a bit painful for it when you see $4k solid options) but it will be prepared for a bigger block.

Since I'm doing it, I said it's better to upgrade the engine (currently 289 + 3 speed automatic) + tranny.

My ideal option:
450hp+ in base (without supercharger/turbos yet), that can be pushed further by adding those later on
Manual transmission 5 or 6 speed small enough to fit the tranny well without slicing car in the middle

It would be good to have AC solution on board but no drama if not
Definitely should support power brakes solution.

Not sure if it's important, I will prefer to switch to manual steering because it bugs me how easy steering wheel goes left and right. Doesn't feel like I have any control over it, too light.

If $12k budget for engine + tranny (new) sounds unrealistic, I probably would look for used options but new is always better :)

What should I get?
It doesn't work like that...you can't build a NA engine now and just decide to go turbocharged or supercharged in the future....not in any logical manner anyway. The compression ratio on NA engines is generally too high to run more than mild boost...the camshafts for NA engines have too much overlap for boosted engines. The list goes on....if you build a boosted engine, it should be designed for that from the start. Sure...you can slap a turbo on a stock long block engine and run 10-12psi all day....but you can't do the same thing for a built NA engine and expect decent results. So decide forced induction or NA to start with...since a boosted stock longblock is not in the cards.

A 12k budget just screams a 347 stroker with AFR heads(or a 393 stoker if you want to use a 351w block) with a TKX 5 speed(6 speed transmissions with 2 overdrive gears are a gimmick unless you spend a lot of time above 150mph). If you build the engine yourself it should be more than doable.

For my money...it makes more sense to slap a turbo on a stock longblock than it does to dump 12k into a NA engine....that way you make the power you want...but if it breaks, it no big deal, just find another stock long block, its a lot cheaper than having to build it again. You can get a very nice turbo system and standalone fuel system well under the 12k budget.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 · (Edited)
@Grimbrand Thank for you such detailed reply.

I'm pulling out 289 and 3 speed automatic out of the car (they seen better days) and they will never get back.
Whatever I will get will be something new.

Gave a thought about what the suspension solution will be, and just to avoid any compromises I'm getting front&rear Detroit speed (they pretty straight forward solution with very detailed youtube "how to"). Meaning, I will cut wells anyway making bigger room under the hood.
I will purchase it same time with the engine so mounts and rear end will fit whatever it requires.
Probably I can order along with the front suspension stronger springs to maintain the weight.

I won't sell this car, it's guaranteed.

Do you think $12k, engine + tranny turn key solution with 460 ford + TKX would be enough?
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
@wicked93gs thank you for an advice. could you tell me what would I need exactly for 1st and 2nd solutions, like list of parts or whatever?
I'm mostly "youtube" based knowledge guy and even I restored some amount of modern cars but it's probably the biggest project car I will ever did/will do. A little guidance would be great.
 

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67 Mustang Coupe, 289, Factory 3 speed on the floor, Factory AC, PS
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I agree with @wicked93gs. A stroked 347 would be a great choice. I would personally go with a 4 speed UNLESS you plan to spend a lot of time on the highway. A 5 or 6 speed with a good overdrive top gear would be nice for highway driving, but for cruising and an occasional trip to the strip, I think a 4 speed would be great, I see no reason why you could not do a decent 347 and a 4 speed for 12K.
 

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Lmao, there's no need for a 460 to get 450 hp. A stroked windsor can get there fairly easy and no it won't twist the car in two. Run drop motor mounts and it'll give you more clearance in the tunnel.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Lmao, there's no need for a 460 to get 450 hp. A stroked windsor can get there fairly easy and no it won't twist the car in two. Run drop motor mounts and it'll give you more clearance in the tunnel.
my only thought about the engine, that it should have some room for further push if I will decide later on. you think stroked 351?
 

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$12k would get you a coyote engine and transmission from a newer mustang/f-150. That would require a whole new front suspension setup though.
 

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Lmao, there's no need for a 460 to get 450 hp. A stroked windsor can get there fairly easy and no it won't twist the car in two. Run drop motor mounts and it'll give you more clearance in the tunnel.

Umm I think you’re mistaken. There is a member or two that are certain that’s exactly what will happen 😂

Chris
 

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@Grimbrand Thank for you such detailed reply.

I'm pulling out 289 and 3 speed automatic out of the car (they seen better days) and they will never get back.
Whatever I will get will be something new.

Gave a thought about what the suspension solution will be, and just to avoid any compromises I'm getting front&rear Detroit speed (they pretty straight forward solution with very detailed youtube "how to"). Meaning, I will cut wells anyway making bigger room under the hood.
I will purchase it same time with the engine so mounts and rear end will fit whatever it requires.
Probably I can order along with the front suspension stronger springs to maintain the weight.

I won't sell this car, it's guaranteed.

Do you think $12k, engine + tranny turn key solution with 460 ford + TKX would be enough?
I think you're going to dive into this rabbit hole headfirst and eyes closed, but it's not a place I'd want to go. I hope you like it down there when you reach your destination! lol

What you are describing is not a $12k job.
 

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Umm I think you’re mistaken. There is a member or two that are certain that’s exactly what will happen 😂

Chris
Hey, I didn't say 'twist in half', I said twist to pieces. And if you've ever seen shock towers on someone's car that's making big power without doing the reinforcements, or watched Roadkill Garage's "bangshift Cougar" lift one front tire with both rears on the ground, I'm sure you'd agree! lol
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
I think you're going to dive into this rabbit hole headfirst and eyes closed, but it's not a place I'd want to go. I hope you like it down there when you reach your destination! lol

What you are describing is not a $12k job.
I did a few projects similar to it, just way modern cars with bunch of data over internet so it was easy even I was cutting, welding, rebuilding engines and so on. Now it's like completely new territory.

What will fit $12k? I would push a bit more but just don't want my wife to kick me out for another "project" lol.
 

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@Mustang Mike 50 4 speed feels like a compromise in a way, never rolled on less than 5 speed and due to I was planning to put 3.9 or 4.10 gear or similar, 5 speed is essential if I will ever want to roll on the highway
Gear choice should be dictated by the engine and transmission setup...not the other way around. The 4 speed Toploader is probably one of the best manual transmissions ever made. The only downside it has is interstate travel. Think of it differently...the more you are shifting the slower you are accelerating. For a boosted car in particular a wide ratio Toploader T4 would be the ideal choice.

If you are talking about chopping out the shock towers though....keep it simple, a LS/T56 swap(even if it does have 2 overdrive gears) would do the trick easily enough. As for chopping the tunnel...not sure why you would hesitate if already cutting the shock towers out. There are any number of engine/trans combos out there these days that make the numbers you want and can be had within your budget....the qualifier is that you would have to do the work to install them.

In short...you have a half dozen ways to get to your goal...but you are unlikely to reach that goal within budget if you don't do the work yourself. I also don't suggest building for some number in your head...that is pointles for anything other than bragging rights...I suggest having a goal in mind for the car(IE a certain 1/4 mile time, a road course lap time, etc) then running the numbers and finding out the minimum required to get there before deciding what you need to do for the engine
 

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I say the easiest solution, cut out the shock towers, and put in a Coyote. (Or some would say on a certain Facebook page that I got suspended from lol)

Chris
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Gear choice should be dictated by the engine and transmission setup...not the other way around. The 4 speed Toploader is probably one of the best manual transmissions ever made. The only downside it has is interstate travel. Think of it differently...the more you are shifting the slower you are accelerating. For a boosted car in particular a wide ratio Toploader T4 would be the ideal choice.

If you are talking about chopping out the shock towers though....keep it simple, a LS/T56 swap(even if it does have 2 overdrive gears) would do the trick easily enough. As for chopping the tunnel...not sure why you would hesitate if already cutting the shock towers out. There are any number of engine/trans combos out there these days that make the numbers you want and can be had within your budget....the qualifier is that you would have to do the work to install them.

In short...you have a half dozen ways to get to your goal...but you are unlikely to reach that goal within budget if you don't do the work yourself. I also don't suggest building for some number in your head...that is pointles for anything other than bragging rights...I suggest having a goal in mind for the car(IE a certain 1/4 mile time, a road course lap time, etc) then running the numbers and finding out the minimum required to get there before deciding what you need to do for the engine
Thank you.

I do everything myself so it's just parts prices.

There's nothing to worry about on chopping the tunnel just I already will cut the half of the car and just wanted to avoid extra work if there some simple solutions. If there no is "plug&play" solutions, I will do that.
 

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I can tell you that I went with a stroked 351W (408) and a T-56 and I've got around 5-6k in the transmission and likely equal to that in the engine. The car isn't on the road yet, but my digital dyno numbers are expected to be in the 400+hp and 500ish tq range. I didn't want to cut my towers out but will be doing lots of stiffening and have already done suspension upgrades.
 

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