Engine vs Engine - Ranger-Forums - The Ultimate Ford Ranger Resource


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  #1  
Old 02-04-2011
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Engine vs Engine

Okay, so just for fun I've been comparing our two rangers. One being a 98 standard cab 2.5L 4 cylinder engine and my 89 ranger 2.9L v6 engine. 89 has bigger wheels, 98 has smaller engine but there's a very noticeable difference in power in the 98. 98 can spin/take off like crazy and my 89 is slow as molasses.

Any ideas why? I want help restoring some of the power back.

Edit: Also, can you fit a 302 engine in a ranger with relative ease? I've got someone willing to sell an older 302 engine with low kms for 150$
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Old 02-04-2011
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yea many people on here has done it and if its carbed it should pretty easy
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Old 02-04-2011
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ardy View Post
Okay, so just for fun I've been comparing our two rangers. One being a 98 standard cab 2.5L 4 cylinder engine and my 89 ranger 2.9L v6 engine. 89 has bigger wheels, 98 has smaller engine but there's a very noticeable difference in power in the 98. 98 can spin/take off like crazy and my 89 is slow as molasses.

Any ideas why? I want help restoring some of the power back.

Edit: Also, can you fit a 302 engine in a ranger with relative ease? I've got someone willing to sell an older 302 engine with low kms for 150$
Cam, compression ratio, gearing could all be a factor. I don,t think swapping a 302 in would all that difficult considering no complicated wiring or computer would be involved.
We use to put GM 3.8 liters in older BMW 320i's was pretty simple hardest part was making motor and trans. mounts.
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Old 02-04-2011
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http://halifax.kijiji.ca/c-ViewAdLar...AdId=258401646

I heard radiator can be an issue, which is a little disappointing because I just put a brand new radiator in the motor. So yeah, not sure exactly what I'll end up doing. I'm pretty sure I"m going to buy the motor, but just keep it for a bit.
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Old 02-04-2011
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http://halifax.kijiji.ca/c-ViewAdLar...AdId=258401646

I heard radiator can be an issue, which is a little disappointing because I just put a brand new radiator in the motor. So yeah, not sure exactly what I'll end up doing. I'm pretty sure I"m going to buy the motor, but just keep it for a bit.
I would then spend your time cleaning it up, scrounge around for a trans, maybe some go fast parts i.e.intake carb etc. you could always spend the time and refresh the motor also.

Good luck sounds like a great project.
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Old 02-04-2011
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Another question, the 302 is coming from a 90-96 f150 (he has 3 motors pulled not sure on each year for each) is that an issue? Or should I be looking for one that comes from a specific vehicle?
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Old 02-05-2011
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Remember, the 2.9 liter V6 is an earlier version of the current 4.0 liter, albeit without overhead cams and 1.1 liters smaller...basically the same engine, though.

Find out what the gear ratios are on your trucks...that can make just as big a difference in off-the-line performance as the engine itself. These later Rangers have had some pretty high ratios that can make even the slowest of motors leap off the line like jackrabbits (also explains the poor mileage on some of them too)

The 4-cylinder in your 1998 is the old Ford 4-cylinder originally found in the Pinto of the 1970's...it's a solid motor and was well-evolved by the time they canned it for the Duratec (Mazda) 2.3 engine we have now, but just it just doesn't have the potential that the 2.9 or 4.0 have, so don't sell yourself short for having the old 2.9. The 2.9's had reliability issues when they were new, but the later ones (just before it became a 4.0...late 1980's) seem to have held up better.

If you were doing a swap, the easiest setup would be mounting a 4.0 because it's literally the same motor as you have now, just bored out and substantially updated.

A 302 would also fit, but it makes the front end pretty heavy and is a little more complicated than the 4.0 would be.

I'd suggest re-gearing before anything else. The 2.9 isn't as slow as some make it out to be.
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Old 02-05-2011
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Pssh, swapping that 89 is a cakewalk.

Go carb'd, you won't regret it.
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Old 02-05-2011
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id do a compression check of the 2.9, if your o.k. there, regear it. if you have 3.55's now, 4.10's would make a huge difference in how it performs. the ohv 4.0 and and a 2 barrel carbed 302 arent that much difference in horsepower, while the 302 will weigh more. sure if i had the stuff and the time id do a 302 project, but a 4.0 will be a much easier fit, possibly be better on fuel. id check into your current gearing. the tire size will also come into play. if both trucks were to have the same gears (say 3.73) and your running 26" tires on the 4 cyl but have 31-10.50's on the V6, it will effectively make for a taller gear. swap rear tires around and try the V6 truck with the rears off of the 4 cyl and see if it changes your launch and acceleration.
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Old 02-05-2011
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That's whats up, 2.5L tire squealing power FTW. With 4.10s, manual tranny, and LS that thing will shred tires all day lol.
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Old 02-05-2011
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Now I'm stuck between swapping the 4.0 and the 302. Is 4.0 going to be a noticable difference in power compared to the 2.9?

I like the idea of a 302 because it is a larger engine, and is quite popular. But I also will be looking at time considerations as I want to be able to get this done without a huge amount of down-time. I'd like to get all parts together before I go ahead and do this.

302 vs 4.0, which should I go with?

ALSO IS THE 5.0 V8 FROM A 90-96 F150 THE SAME THING?

Last edited by Ardy; 02-05-2011 at 11:30 AM.
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Old 02-05-2011
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Originally Posted by Ardy View Post
Now I'm stuck between swapping the 4.0 and the 302. Is 4.0 going to be a noticable difference in power compared to the 2.9?

I like the idea of a 302 because it is a larger engine, and is quite popular. But I also will be looking at time considerations as I want to be able to get this done without a huge amount of down-time. I'd like to get all parts together before I go ahead and do this.

302 vs 4.0, which should I go with?

ALSO IS THE 5.0 V8 FROM A 90-96 F150 THE SAME THING?
a 302 is a 302 at least from the standpoint of bore x stroke.(4.0x3.0) different applications will have different fuel systems, camshaft profiles, minor little things like that.dont know offhand the horsepower/torque ratings for different applicatons, seems to me a 2 barrel carb 302 for a maverick in '77 was about 155hp. id make sure the 2.9 was really ready to be retired. if your geared a bit too high, it could still be doggy with a bigger engine. (just not as much) i think a 4.0 swap would be quicker, still alot of stuff to do,but that motor is basically a bored and stroked 2.9 your same trans would work, radiator, possibly exhaust. id just be sure the 2.9 needs to go before tossing it. if a compression check shows all cylinders are fairly even in compression and are around 150-170 its probly still got alot of life in it yet.
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Old 02-05-2011
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302 swap would be fairly simple swap. I wouldn't shoot for a 4.0. A lot more work compared to a carb'd 302, unless it's EFI?
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Old 02-05-2011
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I'm looking into buying the 302 carbed as it sounds a lot easier. But I also like how people are saying it would be a lot easier to do a 4.0 swap. How much would a compression check cost? >.>
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Old 02-06-2011
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If you want a 302/5.0, get one out of a 1996-2001 Explorer/Mountaineer.

GT40/P heads, same as came on the Cobra Mustangs. Cast version of the Cobra Mustang intake manifold. Truck roller camshaft so you'll have lots of low end torque.
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Old 02-06-2011
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I'm still liking the 5.0 :P Can't get enough of that sound. :o
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Old 02-06-2011
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Okay, so is the 5.0 carbed v8 any good? It's coming from a 1984 Thunderbird? HE wants 450$ for it + transmission from a f150
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Old 02-06-2011
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swapping the heavy cast iron intake manifolds and intake will reduce a lot of weight of that engine
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Old 02-06-2011
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I'm looking into buying the 302 carbed as it sounds a lot easier. But I also like how people are saying it would be a lot easier to do a 4.0 swap. How much would a compression check cost? >.>
You can get the compression gauge from autozone loan a tool, think it was a little over 30 last time I got one.
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Old 02-06-2011
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Okay, so is the 5.0 carbed v8 any good? It's coming from a 1984 Thunderbird? HE wants 450$ for it + transmission from a f150
That's a bit high. You can get longblocks for $300 in any junkyard.

1984 T-birds had flat-tappet blocks, and junk D8OE heads. Probably a 2V carburetor too, not that the 4V was anything special (Holley 4160 on the '82-85 Mustang GT, if I remember correctly).

There's better out there.
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