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Here is my advice, and I am a dyed in the wool FE guy willing to make any 390 scream

Do the stock motor and learn to restore this car first. Get it done, learn to enjoy it, and if you decide to go 390, then you have two choices, swap or sell a running car and buy a 390 car.

This being your first resto, that alone will add to your work, do the small block, make the car a part of the family, then make a decision when its done. The FE is almost a weekend swap later on when the car is complete
 

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I would look into a 351W if you are looking for better performance. It will bolt up to your transmission and engine mounts and will be a lot easier and cheaper to install.
FWIW, I would stroke the 351 --I believe that 406 ci is possible. Doesn't have the coo factor of a BB but a lot easier. Just my .02
 

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Here is my advice, and I am a dyed in the wool FE guy willing to make any 390 scream

Do the stock motor and learn to restore this car first. Get it done, learn to enjoy it, and if you decide to go 390, then you have two choices, swap or sell a running car and buy a 390 car.

This being your first resto, that alone will add to your work, do the small block, make the car a part of the family, then make a decision when its done. The FE is almost a weekend swap later on when the car is complete

best advice in the entire thread.

Yes, it will fit, yes it will run good, it will handle like its got the extra weight in it, etc.

i would go buy the 390 since it appears to be a decent price, put it in the corner and start buying stuff for it to build it how you want.

no reason to rush to put a stock motor in there.
 

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OR you can buy the 390 engine and if it's in really good condition, turn around and sell it for more money! :idea:
 

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Unless the car was originally a 390 or 428 car, it's going to be a headache for a novice to go from a 289/302 to a 390/428. When I switched the 302 out of my first Mustang to a 351 Cleveland, I ran into all kinds of problems. Some of the problems were, had to change the radiator, get all the correct pulleys for the 351, obtain the accessory brackets for the power steering pump and alternator, had change the exhuast, change the transmission, get a different transmission crossmember, new driveshaft, and a host of other issues. You'll have to change all those things and more.

Personally, I'm not impressed with the 390 as a performance engine. Yes, I know they can be made to run fairly well. I had friends with 390's that ran pretty good. But they are a very archaic design and don't have near the aftermarket support of the Ford small block. And that was before the aftermarket support that the 289/302/351W engines have today.

I have a 351w stroker (393 cubic inch motor now) that puts out around 600hp. It weighs several hundred pounds lighter than a 390 (even with aluminum heads and intake). My motor would run laps around any 390. I have several hundred pounds less on the front end which makes my car handle much better. Parts are cheaper than the 390 (stock and aftermarket).

So unless there's a really good reason to go with a 390, I'd stick with a 289/302, or even a 351w. But even with the 351w you're going to have to change things.
 

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Mustang rebuid

Took a look at your progress site w/pictures. If you decide to use the 390, your more than qualified to get it done right!

All the bad press I've seen on the 390 and FE motors in general is misinformation that grew over the years, even comments on engine weights are usually grossly exaggerated.

The only real truth I've seen is that in general it costs more to build an FE than many other motors.
 

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All the bad press I've seen on the 390 and FE motors in general is misinformation that grew over the years, even comments on engine weights are usually grossly exaggerated.

The only real truth I've seen is that in general it costs more to build an FE than many other motors.
Agreed! My 428 with the use of aluminum components is within a 100 lbs of my stock 289. With stock suspension up front, I sure can't notice any handling difference.

I will tell you that it's now a lot more fun to drive! ;)
 

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Agreed! My 428 with the use of aluminum components is within a 100 lbs of my stock 289. With stock suspension up front, I sure can't notice any handling difference.

I will tell you that it's now a lot more fun to drive! ;)
Not really a comparison then, is it?

The question was regarding a 390, not a 428. Two different animals.

Also, a modded big block versus a stock 289? Add those same mods to a 289 and you are back to nearly a 500 lb spread again. And don't forget the additional weight of the significantly heavier C6.

IMO, it is more fun to drive a lighter, faster, sports car. If you want a 390 in your car, you would be better off buying a 60's T-Bird. Remember, Ford's official name for the 390 was the "Thunderbird Special" after all...LOL
 

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Lula,
You totally missed the point. The point is: FE's don't weigh nearly as much as most people think. A quick internet search yield FE engine weights of 650 -680 lbs depending upon the source. A small block 289/302 weighs around 460 lbs. Not sure where you come up a 500-lb difference.

My other point was that with 43 year old suspension technology/design, nobody is going to notice an extra 100 lbs in the front end.

390's and 428's aren't all that different. Same block, different stroke & bore. The same mods to my 428 could be applied to 390 and yield similar results. Power will be down a little simply due to fewer cubic inches.

We are getting off track from the OP's question though; he simply asked if a 390 would fit and if $150 is a fair price. The answer to both questions is "yes".
 

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Lula,
My reading comprehension is just fine. I understand the point that I made, but apparently you didn't. I tried to clarify it in a civilized manner but it appears that you are just looking for a pissing match. Count me out.
 

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Lula,
My reading comprehension is just fine. I understand the point that I made, but apparently you didn't. I tried to clarify it in a civilized manner but it appears that you are just looking for a pissing match. Count me out.
No, but whatever.
 

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Drop in a 460 with an Edelbrock Top End Kit and you'll have a Super reliable, low RPM ride with 500 + HP/TQ,.....hold the %[email protected]* on and enjoy!
 

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Missed the point???

Not only were you inaccurate in your statements, but your logic does not work. You should re-read what you wrote.

I for one would like factual information introduced into conversations regarding engine swaps, tranny suggestions etc. when talking about modifying these cars, not fabrications.

The only factual info on the swap seen on these pages are 1) it will work 2) in general it will cost more to build a 390 than a 289, 302, etc..., and 3) the 390 is a tight fit in a '68, but the Mustang was changed in '67 to fit an FE block. One more note if your going for the "One HP per cubic Inch, the cost may be very similar" Once you start trying to save weight and move much beyond that goal, cost will go up on the FE faster than a small block as a factor of weight saving goals and HP/CI goals


No, I think that you missed the point, re-read ^.
 

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Not only were you inaccurate in your statements, but your logic does not work. You should re-read what you wrote.

I for one would like factual information introduced into conversations regarding engine swaps, tranny suggestions etc. when talking about modifying these cars, not fabrications.

The only factual info on the swap seen on these pages are 1) it will work 2) in general it will cost more to build a 390 than a 289, 302, etc..., and 3) the 390 is a tight fit in a '68, but the Mustang was changed in '67 to fit an FE block. One more note if your going for the "One HP per cubic Inch, the cost may be very similar" Once you start trying to save weight and move much beyond that goal, cost will go up on the FE faster than a small block as a factor of weight saving goals and HP/CI goals
I think that there have been a lot of inaccurate assumptions from the FE crowd (they always seem to be defensive in these forums). It seems that the person was just considering a straight swap between a 289 and a 390.

As to whether that would actually be a good idea...I prefer the unique sound of that last great short stroke V8 engine. It is specifically identified with the Mustang, and 1968 was the last year for it.
 

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Only factors I see here is cost. FE's can be lightened with aluminum components to make the difference less than throwing one of your kids in the back and will spin just as fast as a SBF. The sound and torque are both incredible. Of course, you can always build a 427 inch small block if you'd like. Either way there's no replacement for displacement.
 

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I for one like the idea of the FE in the 68 Mustang. Small block cars are just done to death. Congrats on some originality to you! Some of the things you will encounter with this swap will be:
1) cylinder heads (14 bolt type)
2) exhaust manifolds / headers
3) if using a C-6 (must come from another intermediate car or modify floor pan / firewall)
4) C-6 trans crossmember
5) driveshaft
6) 9" rearend
7) front and rear brake upgrades (drum dimensions are different)
8) front and rear springs
9) cooling system (radiator / shroud / mounts)

There is a some weight differences as mentioned, but don't let that deter you. My dad is an original ower of a 1966 390GT Fairlane with manual steering. His steering does not require two hands like some people post try to make you believe. He can steer his car with only one finger. One other note, if done properly, you can get fair milage out of a big block. (in my own case, 1966 Fairlane 390GT clone, 475 horsepower, 618 ft lbs torque, 24-27 miles per gallon, and no aluminum heads or intake either!)

Good luck with your project!!!

Good luck with your project
 

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Nice! I almost forgot about "Little Red". Unfortunate that it did not survive the scrap heap.

Do you have a link to any photos of the engine bay? It would be interesting to see how they fit that thing under the hood. I guess it must have been a custom hood to create the space? Even with the 289/302, the Paxton barely fits in the engine bay, especially the '68 version with power steering.

I have seen a couple of photos and it looks like the hood has some extra cut outs or some similar type of mod.
 
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