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2003 Mustang LM7/4L80e Swap

Old 10-23-2017, 01:25 PM
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Default 2003 Mustang LM7/4L80e Swap

I figured I'm far enough into this swap that I could at least go ahead and show some of my progress pictures and info.

I started with a 2003 Ford Mustang V6 Convertible that I purchased from my step mother. She had gotten it from her fiance when he passed away early 2016. He brought it up to Ohio from Arkansas. Ultimately my younger brother got ahold of it for college transportation and it ended up throwing a rod. Fast forward to 9/3/2017 when my father in law had complained about still having this car in his lot because noone wanted to fix it. I paid my mother $400 and was able to drive it the 1/4 mile back to my house.

I quickly took it apart and dropped the K-Member and drivetrain. Sold them together for $200. No Joke. I had parted out a 2001 Suburban to get the engine, wiring harness and PCM. I paid $500 for it, but ended up parting it out and overall walked away with $150 more than what I paid for it, plus the engine stuff.
Attached Thumbnails 2003 Mustang LM7/4L80e Swap-2003_mustang_2_1a90093cf8e8c43adb89cfcc7dbb2a7462d477aa.jpg   2003 Mustang LM7/4L80e Swap-2003_mustang_1_5ba17cb0011472d1818f1fd6191f15238bd43dd3.jpg  

Last edited by Andler2008; 10-24-2017 at 01:44 PM.
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Old 10-23-2017, 01:32 PM
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I started tearing down the front end and getting it prepped to fit the engine. I found out that it was wrecked at one point and had tweaked the front driver side frame rail. I decided to chop off the frame rails and fender rails back to the shock tower and start on doing a tube front end. I had some 2.25x2.25 square tube and I bought front down tubes for a roll cage off Jegs. Cut it to size and got to where it is now.

Upon fitting the fenders and bumpers, I can now make my mounts for the headlight panel and radiator. I scooped up a couple of fans from a 98 camaro that I'll use on the radiator, and the radiator will likely come from ebay matching the same core specs as the camaro radiator so the shroud should be a perfect fit without any modifications. I only have 31.5" between the frame rails and the radiators I'm looking at are between 27 and 31 inches which is perfect.
Attached Thumbnails 2003 Mustang LM7/4L80e Swap-tear_down_1_254433761af03dedda5e7afce85667a05b5ad132.jpg   2003 Mustang LM7/4L80e Swap-cradle_engine_removal_1_b167c42f467e090521ac2d71693db0dd42386101.jpg   2003 Mustang LM7/4L80e Swap-driver_fender_accident_1_0a7017b755535db8f7009b90f2e86edc163e94bb.jpg   2003 Mustang LM7/4L80e Swap-driver_fender_accident_2_cbd0cf7d541c39661af980b13253d72532075c22.jpg   2003 Mustang LM7/4L80e Swap-engine_bay_clean_up_2_ba0d26f45f36dce65daeddb8b113f53a7948754c.jpg  

2003 Mustang LM7/4L80e Swap-tube_front_end_1_cd667f7218334f6ad06759df217c46df0fa98a3a.jpg   2003 Mustang LM7/4L80e Swap-tube_front_end_3_4f0f4af407687941e8cc14f9861fd097b8153fc5.jpg   2003 Mustang LM7/4L80e Swap-tube_front_end_2_120443caad290eeaed6cf45f6d8aa15e921d874a.jpg   2003 Mustang LM7/4L80e Swap-tube_front_end_6_5eae57e74d17f0bccf58e958cceed30a86c6d52c.jpg   2003 Mustang LM7/4L80e Swap-tube_front_end_5_47a658021393658d285ccbf44b60842f1e0249f5.jpg  


Last edited by Andler2008; 10-24-2017 at 01:52 PM.
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Old 10-23-2017, 01:35 PM
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Your pics are all coming up sideways... Mods? Could you fix this?
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Old 10-23-2017, 01:45 PM
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I've been closely following LT1Swap . com to create my standalone harness as well from the suburban harness. Since I junked the Suburban, I was able to grab the OBD2 port, throttle cable and a bunch of other stuff I may or may not need. What I didn't grab was the cluster that showed the mileage of the motor. 350k. Kinda wish I would've, but just didn't think about it at that time.

I removed the injector circuits individually so I could re route them behind the fuel rail. I also separated out the coil circuits so I could remote mount them if I wanted too. I honestly don't think I will. I may just clean up the coil harness on both banks to make it more neat. I did run the MAF, ALT, IAC, and TPS behind the fuel rails as well so they could be mostly hidden on the intake unlike the OEM Mounting. I plan on wrapping all of this in braided high temp covering as well for a nice neat look and heat protection.

I used GXL wiring to extend a few of the wires as needed so far from LT1 swap, I purchased a fuse block that has 6 fuses and 5 5-pin relays that I can use for additional circuits if needed in the future. I have not come up with a location for the PCM, but it will likely go where the mustang PCM is since I will not be retaining all of the mustang wiring.

I finished the wiring for all sensors on the engine and have it routed to the passenger side by the original PCM, but there is alot of extending that will need to be done since the PCM was originally located in the engine bay by the battery in the suburban.

I expect to be pulling the dash out soon so i can get a new fuel pump circuit setup since the original circuit is varying voltage to regulate rail pressure. i'll also be looking into moving circuits into the new fuse box so i can retain power windows, power locks, AC controls, radio, etc.
Attached Thumbnails 2003 Mustang LM7/4L80e Swap-wiring_harness_1_f60058bf05be5f7370b492af4df4372b317c46f1.jpg   2003 Mustang LM7/4L80e Swap-wiring_harness_2_8f5fe9aeb88c8d72e847310c918c848a90bdb1c9.jpg   2003 Mustang LM7/4L80e Swap-wiring_harness_4_6b3022f5a7b0b8e8d9036d020d6243a20241a136.jpg   2003 Mustang LM7/4L80e Swap-wiring_harness_5_38782f2109b9364bbb95f9eb49c1b0ca0761897a.jpg   2003 Mustang LM7/4L80e Swap-wiring_harness_6_50ec8e15bd5ef12b48ed3e077bd9be65a55a7157.jpg  

2003 Mustang LM7/4L80e Swap-wiring_harness_7_dd71922d26fae2c78376a174df71383ed88ec4fd.jpg  

Last edited by Andler2008; 10-24-2017 at 01:55 PM.
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Old 10-23-2017, 01:46 PM
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Originally Posted by G Atsma View Post
Your pics are all coming up sideways... Mods? Could you fix this?
I just noticed this. Anyway that I can fix it when uploading? All of mine in my folder are showing the correct orientation.
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Old 10-23-2017, 01:59 PM
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So far I've grabbed a few extra items like the 8.8" from an 04 GT for $130, the 2002 4l80e from a 3500 van for $150 and the hydroboost setup from a GT for $50. Got them from the junkyard. I had no intention of doing this to be as cheap as possible, but to learn as much as possible. I enjoy the challenge of something new.

In addition to all of this, I have an excel spreadsheet showing all costs involved in this project so far and what money has been spent or made. I also listed parts that I'd like to purchase, where I can get them for the best price from which retailers, alternate part numbers from other vehicles that it may fit, etc. So far I'm into this project for $1013 minus the purchase of the car. I sold the drivetrain for 200, made 150 off the suburban part out, so I could say I only purchased the mustang for $50. So overall total is $1063. Hypothetically.

I did purchase a new diff cover because the junkyard likes to poke holes in them to drain them, and a POR15 kit so I can coat the rear end before I swap it out with the 7.5" that's currently under the car. Those are not included in the price, but were about $25 each. so $1113 lol

I think after fittings, fluids, and some additional electrical items, I'll likely be close to 2k.
Attached Thumbnails 2003 Mustang LM7/4L80e Swap-4l80e_1_90bd80846b9af9f93454302f22b78012710ec450.jpg   2003 Mustang LM7/4L80e Swap-hydraulic_master_cylinder_2000_gt_23e46ded7b4e2554d5bd5565a35800ea070c0626.jpg   2003 Mustang LM7/4L80e Swap-04_8_8_1_e79c854a60c44af8b3895c621937220b6c35b90a.jpg  
Attached Files
File Type: xlsx
Mustang Parts List.xlsx (21.1 KB, 52 views)

Last edited by Andler2008; 10-24-2017 at 02:22 PM.
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Old 10-23-2017, 02:59 PM
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I think at this level the mods might be able to rotate the pics. Mods? If you please?
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Old 10-24-2017, 02:21 PM
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I fixed all of the pictures in the posts by adding them to my albums on my profile. I hope that helps some.

I recently bought a POR15 kit to paint the rear axle before I put it into the car. I've not used it before, but I'd like to see how well it works. I have a 2014 Ram that is starting to show surface rust on the rear end and front suspension components and I'd like to coat them so it won't look so bad later on.

I will be cleaning up the rear end tonight and hopefully applying the POR15 while it's still a little damp outside. I have to also put the new diff cover on and get it properly sealed.

While I let the POR15 dry, I'm going to be removing the interior to start working on the chassis electronics and wiring. I'll be mainly getting a good look at the connectors, figuring out what goes where, labeling every item, then deciding what will be kept and what will be removed.

Since the CCRM controlled the fan outputs, fuel pump and AC, They will get their own circuits and relays and I'll be removing the inertia switch all together. I'll post some pictures later tonight of the progress.
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Old 10-24-2017, 05:45 PM
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Good so far, keep updating as I'll be duplicating a lot of this work on my V6 new edge.

Will also be cutting and re-doing the front section of frame due to previous collision. What are you planning for the plastic headlight bracket that holds the headlights and grill in place?


Something I've been wondering, do airbags still work after a swap?
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Old 10-25-2017, 06:55 AM
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Who's k-member you going to use ?
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Old 10-25-2017, 07:12 AM
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Originally Posted by imma_stocker View Post
Good so far, keep updating as I'll be duplicating a lot of this work on my V6 new edge.

Will also be cutting and re-doing the front section of frame due to previous collision. What are you planning for the plastic headlight bracket that holds the headlights and grill in place?


Something I've been wondering, do airbags still work after a swap?
For the headlight bracket, it does bolt to the fenders with 4 bolts already, so it stays put that way, but I also plan on integrating the brackets that bolt to the center of the core support into the cross mount that will be at the top of the radiator. Just keeping it simple.

I actually came across the airbag module last night when pulling the dash. It's on top of the Trans tunnel under the dash. you should be able to see it in one of the pictures.

Originally Posted by booboo37 View Post
Who's k-member you going to use ?
I want to use Maximum Motorsports K Member. I like how beefy it looks compared to others and I feel it'll hold up to the abuse of autocross if I decide to do that next year when LS Fest comes around. I'm generally pretty hard on my vehicles anyway, so I'd rather be safe than sorry.

For now, I'm using the stock K-Member. I'm going to buy headers before the end of the year, just buying the cheap long tubes from ebay to start. I think they'll fit, but if not, I'll buy the new K-Member sooner rather than later like I planned.
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Old 10-25-2017, 07:21 AM
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I pulled the dash out last night. Only took about an hour, so not too bad. Saw some interesting things that I've never come into contact with before like the lockout mechanism for the shifter, this one was broken so sometimes it would come out of park, sometimes it wouldn't.

I did not realize the blower system was vacuum controlled (I think it's vacuum) based on all the different colored hoses behind the dash.

Looks like there's a timing wheel of some sort on the Steering wheel shaft where it connects to the U-Joint inside the cab, not sure what it's for or if it's even used that way, but looked interesting. My 2014 Ram 1500 has an on center sensor for the steering wheel to make it easier to align the wheel when taken to an alignment shop. That's why it interested me.

Found the control module for the Airbags, I will be removing that as well as I plan on running a different wheel setup, 5 point harness and a 6 point roll bar. Here's some pics of the items I've removed.
Attached Thumbnails 2003 Mustang LM7/4L80e Swap-interior_breakdown_1_d7274edb8ecadb6a76eb17c8069cdc63722421ac.jpg   2003 Mustang LM7/4L80e Swap-interior_breakdown_2_0d0313c53f9f1f825ad490091d9259467acfbf98.jpg   2003 Mustang LM7/4L80e Swap-interior_breakdown_3_4c6a37f41622f22719eb810dc73e277da09cdac4.jpg   2003 Mustang LM7/4L80e Swap-interior_breakdown_4_71c1af7d0d1289b3f0b700fc7fc337e99c504a9c.jpg  
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Old 10-25-2017, 07:24 AM
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Just a follow up, I couldn't remove the driver seat because it's power, and I don't have the electronics hooked up to move it back and forth. I was able to get a socket on the bolts, but the ratchet was being pushed into the floor and made it a nightmare to remove. I'll have to buy a socket wrench that has a flex head on it to get it off without putting power to the seat. I didn't even try to take the passenger side seat out due to the fact that I gave up on the driver seat pretty quickly.
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Old 11-02-2017, 02:23 PM
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I've been making some decent progress recently. I pulled the rest of the interior out of the car, then I pulled the wiring harness out of the car. Once I got the harness out, I laid it out on my shop floor and proceeded to label all connectors with location and what the went to. I removed the harness from the Dash as well as I will be putting the dash back in to start looking for the PCM's final resting place, room for a bus bar or two and Fuse box.

I also ordered a bunch of additional parts I've been needing to grab to make more progress:

GM Flexplate Spacer and Bolts to fit the 4l80e to the LM7
Walbro 400LPH Fuel Pump
2010 Camaro Water pump(Retains truck accessory spacing so I can use it without spacers)
Spark Plug Wires and Heat protection Sleeves
4l80e Pan and Gasket

I also sent a 1997 jeep ZJ to the junkyard but I pulled the radiator out before doing so. It was a V8 and the V6 camaro dual fan setup fits pretty damn close up to the Radiator. Hoses are even in similar positions as an OEM LS vehicle. Radiator was free, so I figured I could at least try it. Worst that could happen is I need to get a bigger one later. It'll require some brain power to mount the fans to the radiator for maximum efficiency, but I think they'll this setup with work just fine.
Attached Thumbnails 2003 Mustang LM7/4L80e Swap-full_chassis_wiring_harness_93c123ff696d1d1154d83c555be750d9ab228727.jpg   2003 Mustang LM7/4L80e Swap-interior_breakdown_6_8de0dbe54ce4820301d0ec527b99086556f7273c.jpg   2003 Mustang LM7/4L80e Swap-radiator_setup_1_34c6a10f9491064efeec7578733c86388959ee36.jpg   2003 Mustang LM7/4L80e Swap-radiator_setup_5_08131c43dd2faa7baae5c989035abb26628d63df.jpg   2003 Mustang LM7/4L80e Swap-radiator_setup_4_6a7679e0a32e630878dd784b7d8664410e96c7ce.jpg  

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Old 11-03-2017, 02:38 PM
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I got some time again last night to pull the rear bumper and support, pulled the 7.5" rear axle and dropped the fuel tank.

Seeing as how this car is originally from Arkansas and wasn't driving in Ohio for more than 6 months, there was tons of red clay and mud stuck up underneath the chassis and bumper and covering the top of the gas tank as well. I cleaned off a few areas that were covered in clay and it looked like the paint was brand new. So that was a nice surprise.

I am planning on building a simple car tilter this weekend since the chassis is down to bare frame. I added a picture of a friends nova on one he built. This will make it so much easier to prep and paint the underbody in the future, but also organize my brake lines and both fuel lines.

I also plan on grabbing a 2nd wiring harness from a suburban this weekend at the local LKQ to scavenge some of the wires off of it to lengthen my harness. The full wiring harness from there is $26, where as buying the individual spools or matching colors is between $100-$200 for all of the wires I'm extending. I have a plan to keep all fuses and relays withing the cab behind the firewall. It should make for a very clean and simple engine bay.
Attached Thumbnails 2003 Mustang LM7/4L80e Swap-chassis_breakdown_3_c716bb011a75cb47a970c931ce89087bb77be62c.jpg   2003 Mustang LM7/4L80e Swap-chassis_breakdown_2_3330384751999a9dbec754328e7a90ad70f44a44.jpg   2003 Mustang LM7/4L80e Swap-car_tilter_a2da350a61c64a00e071419a6373a196385fd1a9.jpg  
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Old 11-07-2017, 05:50 PM
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Hi looks like its coming along good. Thanks for posting all your progress. Had a question? Im doing the same swap your doing but i have a coupe. I have had the engine running a couple of different time now. Im running the microsquirt on mine with a TH400. But anyway i got my cooling system all done along with and the alternator all hooked up. Im running one off of a alternator off a 2001 blazer. I was going to try and take it for a drive and low and behold the 5.3 just died while i was doing some tuning on my idle. Tried to restart the engine and nothing like everything in the car was dead. I checked my battery voltage in a couple different places at the fuse box under the hood and at the battery i had 12.6 volt but everywhere else only 5 volts. Im thinking its the GEM module. I have removed the factory ecm and most of the wiring. I have no need for it. Everything on the car worked fine except for the gauges witch im not using. I had it start working after pulling the battery cables but as soon as i hit the starter everthing is dead. Wondered if anyone might have a idea of what might be going on Thanks.
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Old 11-07-2017, 09:48 PM
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So the GEM and PCM being removed is going to cause you a headache if you're going to try and use the OEM Mustang circuits. You would be much better off creating a few new circuits. I can almost guarantee your CCRM (If still plugged in and used) is not powering the fuel pump any longer. Create a new circuit and make sure you bypass the FPRM in the trunk on the Driver side.

Make a new starting circuit. You will need to make sure you find the correct wires within the ignition switch, then run them from there. I wouldn't try and track the wires down through the dash harness as it just creates more of a headache IMO.

I suspect the PATS system may still be in play somewhere in your harness, but I'd need to know specifics as to what you've removed, and what you've added.
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Old 11-10-2017, 11:19 AM
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So I picked up the transmission and put it on my welding table to pull the pan and pull the tail shaft so I can see what yoke size I'll need to get. I grabbed some quick measurements for it so I could reference them later.

I pulled the converter and mated the tranny to the motor to try and install it into the chassis. I needed to get a feel of the harness lengths and help finalize the PCM mount. It turns out, in all of my research and screwing around on the interwebs, not once did I ever see that the OEM mustang tranny crossmember mounts interfere with the 4l80e. I don't have an extra set of hands that could help tell me this, I had to find out by the fact that the mount actually caved in my trans connector slightly.

I also found out that the spacer (PN# SUM-70400) is actually not the correct spacer to use for mounting a 4l80e to a 5.3 LM7. It says it mounts a non LS 4l80e to a gen III engine, but the holes do not line up if you're using the 4l80e flexplate. I returned mine, and I ordered the ATP-Z270 flexplate spacer and bolts that should work properly.

I also grabbed another full wiring harness from the junkyard for $12 to supply my harness with extra wires to extend the harness as needed. It was much cheaper and easier than buying new wiring online.

Otherwise, I took some pictures of the transmission pan and valve body to show the discolored fluid that I suspect has clutch material in it. What do you all think?

Also I noticed that the torque converter shaft actually has a ridge on it towards the bottom of the shaft and I'm concerned the bushing is bad in the pump housing and in turn destroyed the shaft of the torque converter. Also looks like there was fluid spray on the inside of the bellhousing possibly proving the converter was not in the bushing properly and allowing fluid to push outwards past the converter seal. Does anyone know what the 4l80e converter shaft diameter should be?
Attached Thumbnails 2003 Mustang LM7/4L80e Swap-4l80e_output_3_327133d30d3921bec7fa2c33683c9bddfb1af241.jpg   2003 Mustang LM7/4L80e Swap-4l80e_torque_converter_snout_diameter_90890a60e2613e6d3b2e74b733976d4f24393586.jpg   2003 Mustang LM7/4L80e Swap-crank_spacer_issue_b00ba0f459eb1327289791bc9b14de357a2fabc9.jpg   2003 Mustang LM7/4L80e Swap-extra_wire_from_wiring_harness_0e1c48a1857cd7fa6ef8e374c73d2117ccf4bc08.jpg   2003 Mustang LM7/4L80e Swap-4l80e_transmission_valve_body_9a34d95767f0c7ebc881064b35882851f11c06b1.jpg  

2003 Mustang LM7/4L80e Swap-4l80e_fluid_check_1_29e0076b89613da11e44a849edd1e7565d67e232.jpg  

Last edited by Andler2008; 11-10-2017 at 11:37 AM.
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Old 11-10-2017, 12:07 PM
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I almost forgot, I bought a 2010 camaro water pump as I had seen somewhere that that water pump has the truck accessory spacing due to the crank sensor on the timing cover. So I went ahead and ordered one from ebay, AC Delco#252-975. Low and behold, it fits perfectly. Also, the #1 reason for me buying this is the fact that the top hose is on the driver side of the pulley instead of the passenger side. This will reduce the length of the hose I need to get by quite a few inches. In the picture below, you can also see that the pulley is perfectly lined up with the front serpentine drive on the balancer. So I'm pretty damn excited about this for sure.

Now that the engine is in, I also plan on mounting the radiator hopefully higher than the water pump upper hose so that I can use an adapter for the coolant bypass lines to feed into.
Attached Thumbnails 2003 Mustang LM7/4L80e Swap-l99_water_pump_1_2030f12b1d51bbab33108d33f1012682ddccbed5.jpg   2003 Mustang LM7/4L80e Swap-l99_water_pump_2_9c673065912e691a7a700d219d7f010bbc22fcd8.jpg  
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Old 11-27-2017, 01:35 PM
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I've been super busy traveling for my sons football tournament and getting christmas shopping done for everyone that I haven't done a ton of work. I did however find out a few things:

1) you cannot fit a 4l80e inside the trans tunnel using 4.6 engine swap mounts and the OEM K-Member unless you like your drivetrain angle @ -10 degrees.
2) you cannot Easily fit a 4l80e in the trans tunnel and still have access to the trans cooler fittings and electrical connectors on both sides.
3) The shift lever does come into contact with the body when using the stock K-Member, so BFH work on the tunnel is a must.

I do not like the idea of bashing in the trans tunnel with a BFH, but I also do not like the idea of having to cut out the tunnel to fit the transmission in. I'm going to end up buying a K-Member and engine mounts and just pray the engine sits low enough to get me a better angle. This also means I will need to buy a new oil pan because mine will undoubtedly be too low for my comfort with the engine sitting lower and having less K-Member protecting it.
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