Inline 6 Conversion to V8 - To do or not to do - Vintage Mustang Forums
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post #1 of 30 (permalink) Old 10-08-2019, 04:38 PM Thread Starter
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Inline 6 Conversion to V8 - To do or not to do

I have a some questions from the experts. I have a 67 Mustang inline 6 200. I have done a bunch of restoration work and I am dealing with engine issues now. I decided that I would pull the engine and do a full engine overhaul on the inline 6. I am now into the project an am questioning if this is a good idea.

My basic question is should I spend the money to rebuild the inline 6 motor or spend a little more and convert to a V8

If I keep the inline 6, I am looking at about $2,000 in parts and machining. Once I do that the car is in great shape with no other real issues. That seems like a lot to spend on a inline 6


If I were to convert the car to a V8, I would spend more for sure, but then I would have a much more appealing car
What type of V8 motor would you recommend, Coyote ?
Do I need to change out my 4 post wheel lugs ? I recently upgrade the suspension and added disc brakes in the front
Do I need to upgrade the rear differential ?
I have a 3 speed manual transmission, I assume I would need to change that out as well ?

Any advise here would be great. The V8 road seems way more complicated and expensive.
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post #2 of 30 (permalink) Old 10-08-2019, 04:53 PM
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The change is more than just the engine. The entire suspension should be changed too. You are looking at a new rear end housing with stronger gears and 5 lug axles & brakes. New springs, sway bar, spindles and 5 lug brakes in the front. Add in exhaust system and some wiring mods too.

Coyote? Now you are talking some real work and $$$.

When I bought my car someone had taken out the 6 and put in a 289. As a college kid it took me years to get it converted to a V8 car.

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post #3 of 30 (permalink) Old 10-08-2019, 04:55 PM
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Fix the six. Can't ask for a more reliable motor. Brian

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post #4 of 30 (permalink) Old 10-08-2019, 04:58 PM
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I agree-Keep it 6. Nothing more beautiful to see a original restored Mustang as it should be.
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post #5 of 30 (permalink) Old 10-08-2019, 05:00 PM
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Option C: find another running 200 six for peanuts and throw it in there.
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post #6 of 30 (permalink) Old 10-08-2019, 06:06 PM
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i say keep the six. nothing is more fun than surprising someone, and then popping the hood to show off an inline six.there are fun upgrades you can do to the six that are cheap to do, and give you more power and fuel economy. things like a cam upgrade, since you are replacing the cam anyway. do a direct mount 2bbl conversion as well, since the head is at the machine shop, the cost drops somewhat compared to having it done later on.

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post #7 of 30 (permalink) Old 10-08-2019, 06:16 PM
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Originally Posted by rbohm View Post
i say keep the six. nothing is more fun than surprising someone, and then popping the hood to show off an inline six.there are fun upgrades you can do to the six that are cheap to do, and give you more power and fuel economy. things like a cam upgrade, since you are replacing the cam anyway. do a direct mount 2bbl conversion as well, since the head is at the machine shop, the cost drops somewhat compared to having it done later on.
WOW!
This is the exact thing. We built many Mustangs, My dream (never accomplish) was to find a 6 cylinder car, No added luxuries, bare bones car. Then build it to concourse or nice, then as rbohm has related be proud. It would be a real head turner.
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post #8 of 30 (permalink) Old 10-08-2019, 07:10 PM
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You do know the amount of work to put a Coyote in there, don't you? It doesn't seem like you might if you casually threw out that option.

I'm definitely going to put a V-8 in my 6 cylinder car.

For a simple V-8 (289/302) here's what I'm planning:

Front end: Complete rebuild and new parts, 5 lug disk brakes, new springs to handle the increased weight of the V-8)
Tranny: Hopefully keeping the automatic, so far I haven't heard you need to change it.
Rear end: Different rear end with 5 lugs.
Exhaust

I've found 289s that were reportedly removed from running cars for less than $500. I should be able to get all of the rest of the V-8 specific parts for less than $500. If I do the math correctly I should have a running V-8 for $5000 because that just how the math works out... it always costs you 10x as much as you budget. So the key is not to budget! Problem solved.

I think that's the minimum you need to do. After that it's all upgrades. Like power brakes, etc.
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post #9 of 30 (permalink) Old 10-08-2019, 07:12 PM
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The spindles do not need to be changed. The brake backing plates, yes, but not the spindles.

I have 2 sets of basically brand new shoes, cylinders, springs, freshly turned drums, etc. on 5 lug backing plates, for 67 - 69, sitting on the floor of my garage, from people converting to disk brakes. If I cannot find a home, they will go to scrap pretty soon.

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post #10 of 30 (permalink) Old 10-08-2019, 07:17 PM
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Converting a 6 to an 8 in a 67 is much simpler than doing the same on a 65/66.

I converted my 67 from 4 to 5 lug by buying used parts and rebuilding them.

There are plenty of sixes being pulled for V8 conversions that can be had pretty cheaply. Just make sure its a 200 with 5 freeze plugs vs a 170 or early 200.

Im putting a 250 in my 67, I bought a newly rebuilt 250 shortblock for $350 and a 250 out of a 74 Comet for $25 for all the other parts I need.

My 02 is to put a used 200 in it to keep it on the road and plan out what you want to do in the future.


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post #11 of 30 (permalink) Old 10-08-2019, 07:28 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks everyone for all your opinions here. It seems like keeping a 6 is a simple option. I could get that up and running for sure
Where do you find a working V6 engine ?

I have a few more questions about the V8 upgrade
Where do you find a 289 or 250 short block ? Craiglist, eBay ? How do you know what you are getting.
I would need a new transmission as well, same question

I am leaning toward keeping my inline 6, cleaning it up and making it run great. Thanks for the direct mount 2bbl conversion as well. That's a great idea
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post #12 of 30 (permalink) Old 10-08-2019, 07:35 PM
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289s are getting hard to come by. But the later version, the 5.0 motor, was made all the way to 2001. You can find a '98-2001 Explorer, bolt up the engine with a few changes, and it works great.


The other end of that, of course, is having to convert all of your suspension and brakes to handle it. Rear end, front spindles, steering stuff, the works.

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post #13 of 30 (permalink) Old 10-08-2019, 10:12 PM Thread Starter
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One more question. I have the engine pulled out of the car for a rebuild. I removed the flywheel and clutch. I am going to remove the bell housing and replace the rear main seal. What else would you recommend doing to the transmission and clutch before putting the engine back in place ??
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post #14 of 30 (permalink) Old 10-08-2019, 10:13 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jaredlgoldman View Post
Thanks everyone for all your opinions here. It seems like keeping a 6 is a simple option. I could get that up and running for sure
Where do you find a working V6 engine ?

I have a few more questions about the V8 upgrade
Where do you find a 289 or 250 short block ? Craiglist, eBay ? How do you know what you are getting.
I would need a new transmission as well, same question

I am leaning toward keeping my inline 6, cleaning it up and making it run great. Thanks for the direct mount 2bbl conversion as well. That's a great idea
while the 289 is a V8, the 250 is an inline six. as for finding sixes, find someone doing a V8 swap and garb the six from them. often times you can get them cheap since no one really wants them.
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post #15 of 30 (permalink) Old 10-08-2019, 10:24 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jaredlgoldman View Post
I have a some questions from the experts. I have a 67 Mustang inline 6 200. I have done a bunch of restoration work and I am dealing with engine issues now. I decided that I would pull the engine and do a full engine overhaul on the inline 6. I am now into the project an am questioning if this is a good idea.

My basic question is should I spend the money to rebuild the inline 6 motor or spend a little more and convert to a V8

If I keep the inline 6, I am looking at about $2,000 in parts and machining. Once I do that the car is in great shape with no other real issues. That seems like a lot to spend on a inline 6


If I were to convert the car to a V8, I would spend more for sure, but then I would have a much more appealing car
What type of V8 motor would you recommend, Coyote ?
Do I need to change out my 4 post wheel lugs ? I recently upgrade the suspension and added disc brakes in the front
Do I need to upgrade the rear differential ?
I have a 3 speed manual transmission, I assume I would need to change that out as well ?

Any advise here would be great. The V8 road seems way more complicated and expensive.
I am not sure that our opinions are worth anything to this question. Its about what you want...do you want a v8? So you want a stock I6? Do you want a modified I6? The I6 is more than capable of making power depending on how deep down the rabbit hole you want to go, but to do so you will spend more than a v8. The choice in the end is yours...as are the reasons for it.

I am going with a 3.7L v6 myself....the reasons driving that choice were that I already have the engine, its lighter than even the 200ci I6, and makes more HP than a 289 HiPo...the downsides are that engine making a new engine like that work and fit the old chassis is going to be a headache and the time involved in getting the car back on the road go up dramatically.

Make the choice that makes the most sense to you and meets your goals for the car the best, but above all don't bite off more than you can chew...that's the path to losing interest in a car and it being sold on craigslist as a "project car"
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