Join Date: Mar 2001
Location: Suisun City, CA
5.0 magazine several years ago had a technical piece on comparing 289/302/5.0 blocks. The conclusion was that the aftermarket Ford Racing A4 5.0 block was the strongest of these, then the Boss 302 block, then the 289HiPo/Mexican 302. The 74-? 302s were rated the weakest, I am not sure about the 93Cobra R model, where it lined up. They did not like any of the 5.0 factory blocks when compared with 289 and EARLY 302s. Areas of comparison were the size of the main caps, the thickness of the pan rails, webbing at the front and rear of the intake valley, some other webbing somewhere in the front, lower part of the block, don't know where exactly. Perhaps you can try the 5.0 website and check through their archives for the story.
As for the T5 tranny, the issue with the T5 is simply the length of the input shaft. If you use a 5.0 bellhousing say 1983 or later, the bellhousing provides the correct spacing, when bolted to the 289/302. However, if the bolt pattern of this bellhousing will not work on the older block or for whatever reason you decide to retain the stock bellhousing, you will need to purchase and install a spacer plate (roughly 1 inch thick) to accommodate the longer input shaft found in the T5.
Rebuilding a classic mustang is a reality check on your individual state of perfection.