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Discussion Starter #1
We have a wishlist of parts we are looking at for our Chump/Lemons car. One question is should we stick with our current 2 row radiator, or upgrade it to a 3 row? But just like everyone else here, we are on a budget.

We currently have a 2 row standard unit which looks like it came from car quest. In our first race this year we ran a 2.3 engine and we had no problems with it. But our next race we'll be running a 5.0 and I assume it will be warmer out. While I know the 3 row is better, is our current 2 row good enough?

While on the subject of keeping cool, I found an oil cooler kit for a 1997 Mercury Mountaineer 5.0. Would this kit work on a 92' 5.0 block?

Thanks!
 

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honestly ducting makes the most difference in terms of keeping the car cool. having a properly vented hood to get the air out is a must have also.

a bigger radiator would help, but probably wouldnt solve any overheating problems unless it was ducted and vented.


and ducting and venting is practically a freebie
 

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The best fix is to seal any openings in the front panel where the radiator mounts so that any air entering the front of the car has to go through the radiator.

I an also involved in Lemons racing, mostly assisting teams to prep their cars.
A 5.0 in Lemons should not be turned over 5K and really 4.5K is best! A bigger water pump pulley should also be used to slow it down since you will be running the pump faster then required most of the time. IF the car is an auto remove the AT cooler function and run a stand alone cooler for it.

The oil cooler kit could be made to work but you may have to change out some hoses etc. IT will likely require using a shorter oil filter or you can run a remote oil filter and keep the stock FL1 oil filter.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Thanks for the tips Jim. The car is coming together nicely with the V8 swap. We had to replace a most of the accessories. Good thing is we stuck with core replacements to keep costs down. Larger items would include the carb, starter, alternator and water pump. For the water pump pulley, we don't have much room to get a larger one. How big of a deal would it be to stay with the stock one? And thanks for the RPM recommendations. I could get behind 4500 as a top end, but I would be willing to adjust it a few hundred if we needed it to be just a bit more to reach the end of a straightaway to avoid a late gear change.

We are going to upgrading the front brakes to the same size as on the GT. I am going to order the steel piston calipers tonight (R-L), along with the brake ducting hose to keep them cool. While we did pick up an 8.8 rear end off of craigs list, it has a 2.7xish gear and the brakes need to be rebuilt. So we are holding off with that and crossing our fingers that our 7.5 (3:73) rear end will survive. We'll just have to make sure everyone goes easy on it. No burnouts or hard clutch drops.

Speaking of ducting. We just picked up a used 87' GT front bumper this weekend with duct/venting being the top reason. The side fog light holes we are going to use for brake ducts, and the center I will fab up ducts to direct the air from the center intake to the radiator. As you can see, visually it hard to look at, but will work way better for ducting over our LX front end.


I installed our current radiator back into the car... But that might not be for long. It just depends if we can budget getting a new one. As you can see in some areas it is just falling apart. I bumped this area when I was installing the low profile fan and it just crumbled.


One other questions I never thought I would ask. Did I clean the engine too well? When we got our engine it was a greasy locked up mess, after a ton of degreaser, some power washing and some cheap heat paint applied to both the motor and engine bay everything is looking very sexy. For anywhere else this would be good, but not lemons... Should I not worry about it and just show them our log book that has tracked all of our major purchases and sold items? Or do I need to un-clean this engine bay? Thanks!
 

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If you have good documentation on the mods I wouldn't worry about it. If you still want to make the engine look Lemony just spray some oven cleaning on the aluminum parts and let it sit for a while and then wash off. The shiny aluminum will now look like crap!

That radiator is on it's way to the scrap pile. IF you have to break the budget on something do it by getting a NEW radiator!

The fog light opening is so big on the GT/Cobra bumper cover that I made up a splitter to divide the air into 2-3inch ducts rather then one 4 inch duct that most racers did. The 3 inch is easier to route and having 2 ducts you can direct one at the caliper and one at the center of the rotor.

See you at Autobahn!
 

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Note that not running with the foglight brackets will cause the valence to oscillate at speed, which will eventually tear it up. Probably not a huge problem for Lemons, although there might be a point where it tears enough that you need to replace it. (The brackets tie the car's frame to the metal reinforcing piece along the bottom of the valence; otherwise the thing would be floppy.)
 

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Don't worry too much about engine bay cleanliness (although a stock set of valve covers wouldn't hurt). The judges care much more about suspension mods than engine mods. Plus all Detroit pushrod engines are deemed ticking time bombs anyway. Unfortunately that's usually true, and there's an inverse relationship between horsepower and engine life in this series.
 

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We haven't had a problem yet with temperature using the stock 30 year old radiator running in 95°F weather for 24 and 36 hour races without a problem. We have seen many other Mustangs overheat, though, so I don't know what we're doing different. We've got three years on our motor, 5.0L, and still going strong shifting at 5,000rpm. Other teams rev their motors a lot higher than we do, so perhaps that's a factor. We do have an underdrive pulley setup and big Cantor oil pan. We had an Acusump for a while, but it was used and leaked internally and externally. The oil pan is key, but it costs a lot, both in real cost, and racing value, but the motor doesn't blow up.
 

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I would stick with a two row radiator since you have an oil cooler.
 

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I would stick with a two row radiator since you have an oil cooler.
Doesn't the oil cooler exchange heat into the coolant? That's adding more heat that the radiator has to get rid of.

What are people getting for oil temps? We see 250°F with 10W-30 Royal Purple. I'm reading conventional oil should be 250°F conventional, and 300°F synthetic. Some racecars are going up to 350°F.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
We were looking at an oil cooler that was independent to the radiator. It is just a simple kit that plugs into the oil filter location and it runs the oil to a mini looking radiator. But we never ordered it, so we'll see how well it runs without it for now.
 
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