Engine swap/knock sensor question - Ford Mustang Forum
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post #1 of 12 (permalink) Old 11-12-2017 Thread Starter
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Have a 2003 mountaineer with a water damaged 4.6. Purchased a 1997 mustang 4.6 and am in the process of switching over the items that are specific to my truck. I noticed that there are 2 knock sensors on the truck 4.6, but only 1 mounting location on the mustang motor. What options do I have to make this motor function properly? Thought about splicing the two sensors together and mounting in the single spot, or even making some mounting brackets and JB welding those to the engine intake valley.

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post #2 of 12 (permalink) Old 11-12-2017
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Hmm interesting

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post #3 of 12 (permalink) Old 11-12-2017
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IMO this swap is destined to have problems. You are trying to put a non-PI Romeo 4.6 into a car with a PI Windsor 4.6.

The problems that I see are:
  • The PI intake will not fit the non-PI motor
  • The number of bolt holes on the crank is different (8 vs 6)
  • the size of the bolt holes on the front timing cover are different (10mm vs 12mm).
  • the number of bolts holes on the valve cover is different. This will create "issue" supporting the wiring harness. The angle of the valve covers is different. Not sure if this will make any difference or not.
  • prob the most important the Mustang does not use a knock sensor. But the new application will require a knock sensor.

IMO your chances of success will be greater if you choose a PI 4.6 Windsor block.

Try car-part.com to search of suitable engines in your area.
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2003 GT Convertible (sold & missed)
2000 GT coupe (Craigslist project. Fixed. Now my DD). Windsor to Romeo swap.
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post #4 of 12 (permalink) Old 11-12-2017
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That's solid advice. The Romeo vs Windsor issues are one thing . . . regressing to an NPI motor makes no sense.

Of course you COULD use the 97 npi block, and swap your mountaineer heads/cams/intake for a PI-swapped, compression-increased, power-producing . . .

I'm kidding. Seriously. I'm kidding. DONT do a pi headswap

Renegade Racing 4.6 SOHC: Cobra Crank, Manley Rods, Coated Diamond Pistons 10.75:1 comp w/valve reliefs, PnP CNCd NPI heads, PI intake, Comp Cams 262ah, Ferrea Valves, 70mm TB, TrickFlow, BBK LT o/r X, SCT, Exedy, FRPP 4.10 rar
2001 GT
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post #5 of 12 (permalink) Old 11-13-2017 Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by wmburns View Post
IMO this swap is destined to have problems. You are trying to put a non-PI Romeo 4.6 into a car with a PI Windsor 4.6.

The problems that I see are:
  • The PI intake will not fit the non-PI motor
  • The number of bolt holes on the crank is different (8 vs 6)
  • the size of the bolt holes on the front timing cover are different (10mm vs 12mm).
  • the number of bolts holes on the valve cover is different. This will create "issue" supporting the wiring harness. The angle of the valve covers is different. Not sure if this will make any difference or not.
  • prob the most important the Mustang does not use a knock sensor. But the new application will require a knock sensor.

IMO your chances of success will be greater if you choose a PI 4.6 Windsor block.

Try car-part.com to search of suitable engines in your area.
I looked again and verified you are correct about the 03 engine is a Romeo and the 97 is a Windsor. I also can say that the valve covers and intake both have the same bolt locations and total amount on both engines so they should switch over fine. The timing cover does have one bolt location that doesn?t line up but I?m weighing my options as it?s on the top side of the cover so it shouldn?t cause a leak situation. Also verified that both engines have a 6 bolt crank. I understand I will be looking at about 20 HP difference since the 97 motor isn?t PI, but I can live with that as long as I find a viable option for the knock sensors.
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post #6 of 12 (permalink) Old 11-14-2017
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Originally Posted by Jhorvath929 View Post
I looked again and verified you are correct about the 03 engine is a Romeo and the 97 is a Windsor. I also can say that the valve covers and intake both have the same bolt locations and total amount on both engines so they should switch over fine. The timing cover does have one bolt location that doesn?t line up but I?m weighing my options as it?s on the top side of the cover so it shouldn?t cause a leak situation. Also verified that both engines have a 6 bolt crank. I understand I will be looking at about 20 HP difference since the 97 motor isn?t PI, but I can live with that as long as I find a viable option for the knock sensors.
The intake manifold bolt locations isn't the issue. They are not PHYSICALLY the same manifold. The intake ports on the npi heads are very different from the pi heads. They will not just swap pver and interchange (however, see my pi headswap joke above).

You can find threads on the panther and MN12 platform boards (that would be cvn and tccoa) on how to rtv-the-crap out of that upper bolt hole if you REALLY want to go that route - you might well find them here or on corral (along with the truck boards) too.

The difference in the advertised hp/tq numbers is bc the npi head and manifold are a COMPLETELY different design. From the runners to the ports to the valve location and chamber itself. Its an overdesigned computer-controlled motor. I'm sure it will RUN . . . but not well - and I wouldn't bet the farm that any form of adaptive learning is going to account for the change.

Renegade Racing 4.6 SOHC: Cobra Crank, Manley Rods, Coated Diamond Pistons 10.75:1 comp w/valve reliefs, PnP CNCd NPI heads, PI intake, Comp Cams 262ah, Ferrea Valves, 70mm TB, TrickFlow, BBK LT o/r X, SCT, Exedy, FRPP 4.10 rar
2001 GT
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post #7 of 12 (permalink) Old 11-14-2017 Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jhorvath929 View Post
I looked again and verified you are correct about the 03 engine is a Romeo and the 97 is a Windsor. I also can say that the valve covers and intake both have the same bolt locations and total amount on both engines so they should switch over fine. The timing cover does have one bolt location that doesn?t line up but I?m weighing my options as it?s on the top side of the cover so it shouldn?t cause a leak situation. Also verified that both engines have a 6 bolt crank. I understand I will be looking at about 20 HP difference since the 97 motor isn?t PI, but I can live with that as long as I find a viable option for the knock sensors.
The intake manifold bolt locations isn't the issue. They are not PHYSICALLY the same manifold. The intake ports on the npi heads are very different from the pi heads. They will not just swap pver and interchange (however, see my pi headswap joke above).

You can find threads on the panther and MN12 platform boards (that would be cvn and tccoa) on how to rtv-the-crap out of that upper bolt hole if you REALLY want to go that route - you might well find them here or on corral (along with the truck boards) too.

The difference in the advertised hp/tq numbers is bc the npi head and manifold are a COMPLETELY different design. From the runners to the ports to the valve location and chamber itself. Its an overdesigned computer-controlled motor. I'm sure it will RUN . . . but not well - and I wouldn't bet the farm that any form of adaptive learning is going to account for the change.
I really appreciate the advice here. These are things I didn?t take into account when this replacement engine fell into my lap at such a good deal.
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post #8 of 12 (permalink) Old 11-14-2017
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I took a look but couldn't find a thread addressing the tune issues. For all I know the fuel, spark, load, etc. tables could be the same or really similar (the things a tuner manipulates from stock) but I really find that hard to believe given the rather substantial differences (from a design/philosophy on the combustion chamber point of view specifically) between npi and pi.

Compounded by the fact that the modern pcu (and PI tune) is using those knock-sensors and MY experience with them (from a tuning point of view in panther-chassis cars) is that the system (knock sensor) definitely intervenes under certain circumstances -- as WmBurns said I fear issues. I can easily think of a couple situations where/why the differences in the motors might not play nice with the knock sensors (for good or bad).

just so you know, my pi headswap joke/idea will get you INCREASED static cr and the possibility of more grunt - - along with the requirement that you get a tune done and probably run premium gas.
SO again, I'm pretty much kidding BUT if you have no way to recoup or recover to get a used PI motor to swap in it could be an option with what you have on hand now (outside the tune).

Renegade Racing 4.6 SOHC: Cobra Crank, Manley Rods, Coated Diamond Pistons 10.75:1 comp w/valve reliefs, PnP CNCd NPI heads, PI intake, Comp Cams 262ah, Ferrea Valves, 70mm TB, TrickFlow, BBK LT o/r X, SCT, Exedy, FRPP 4.10 rar
2001 GT
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post #9 of 12 (permalink) Old 11-15-2017
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A non-PI head has tear drop shaped intake ports. A PI head has more square intake ports. This is why a non-PI intake won't bolt up (without leaking) to a PI head.

The size of the combustion chamber is different.

Here's some more information about the differences between PI and non-PI
https://www.americanmuscle.com/what-...or-intake.html
https://www.fordf150.net/forums/viewtopic.php?t=94891
Whats the easiest way of identifying PI Heads? - Ford Mustang Forums : Corral.net Mustang Forum

It may be possible that your 2003 mountaineer has a PI Romeo instead of a PI Windsor. The differences between the Windsor and Romeo are really a "detail" as there are many people out here that have swapped Windsor motors for Romeo (including myself).

Consider that the 2003 Mountaineer will have a long runner TRUCK PI intake. Which really needs to be re-used for the best results.

Doing some more research. The 2003 Mountaineer does not use (2) knock sensors. What it actually uses is (1) 4 wire knock sensor and (1) cylinder head temperature sensor (CHT). I think it's possible that one of the sensors that you think is a knock sensor is actually a CHT sensor.

There are TONS of possible donor PI motors in the salvage yards. IF your 2003 mountaineer is really a Romeo motor, then the donor could come from a 2001+ Ford Panther class car (Crown Vic, Grand Marquis, or Town Car). These motors are cheap and plentiful in the salvage yards.

IMO your replacement non-PI motor could be "free" and for your application this isn't a good deal. It's a big enough job to swap a motor as it is. Seems short sighted to go swimming with rocks tied to your feet.

Disclaimer: I have done (3) motor swaps in my drive way. As well as several 4.6 intake manifold repairs. I am not a professional mechanic. But I'm the kind of guy that HATES doing a big job more than once. I would rather spend more $$ upfront to increase the chances of success on the FIRST try.

OBTW, one of the reasons why I came to own one of my project cars (2000 GT) is because the prior owner attempted to swap in a non-PI motor into a PI application. He got in over his head and had to sell his project at a fire sale price. His loss was my gain.

With proper planning this job should not require any tuning or fab work. It should be straight forward part swapping.

Anyway. Just my 0.02 worth. Good luck.

EDIT: Doing just a little more research using car-part.com an wiki the 4.6 in a 2003 Mercury Mountaineer has an engine VIN code "W" (8th digit of the VIN). That is the same VIN code used for the 2001+ Ford Panther. This should mean a SOHC Romeo 4.6 iron block.

Bottom line is the only real difference between the motor in the Mountaineer and any 2001+ Panther is:
  • The wiring harnes. This swap MUST reuse the original engine wiring harness
  • The front drive acc and cooling fan.
  • The fuel induction including the fuel injectors.
  • Most important. Swap the intake manifold!!!
  • it may be necessary to swap the oil pan.
  • STRONGLY recommend installing a new timing chain and guide if the donor motor has over 150k miles.

Basically put both motors on an engine stand and swap everything from the original motor to make the donor look like the original. But again this is straight forward wrench turning. Nothing special.

2003 GT Convertible (sold & missed)
2000 GT coupe (Craigslist project. Fixed. Now my DD). Windsor to Romeo swap.

Last edited by wmburns; 11-15-2017 at 05:11 PM.
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Quote:
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A non-PI head has tear drop shaped intake ports. A PI head has more square intake ports. This is why a non-PI intake won't bolt up (without leaking) to a PI head.

The size of the combustion chamber is different.
More of a purer fast-burn chamber, from an engineering/philosophy point of view. More attention to tumble/turbulance and less concern about velocity in the manifold design re cyl filling.
Produces (it appears) a broader powerband and better emissions. Also more amenable to forced induction but that's another issue.
Arguably the slow-burn design can be useful/better in a high compression NA setup with a good manifold (see the SVO head) Even that head is really a slow-burn with fast-burn features however

Quote:
There are TONS of possible donor PI motors in the salvage yards. IF your 2003 mountaineer is really a Romeo motor, then the donor could come from a 2001+ Ford Panther class car (Crown Vic, Grand Marquis, or Town Car). These motors are cheap and plentiful in the salvage yards.

With proper planning this job should not require any tuning or fab work. It should be straight forward part swapping.

Anyway. Just my 0.02 worth. Good luck.

EDIT: Doing just a little more research using car-part.com an wiki the 4.6 in a 2003 Mercury Mountaineer has an engine VIN code "W" (8th digit of the VIN). That is the same VIN code used for the 2001+ Ford Panther. This should mean a SOHC Romeo 4.6 iron block.

Bottom line is the only real difference between the motor in the Mountaineer and any 2001+ Panther is:
  • The wiring harnes. This swap MUST reuse the original engine wiring harness
  • The front drive acc and cooling fan.
  • The fuel induction including the fuel injectors.
  • Most important. Swap the intake manifold!!!
  • it may be necessary to swap the oil pan.
  • STRONGLY recommend installing a new timing chain and guide if the donor motor has over 150k miles.

Basically put both motors on an engine stand and swap everything from the original motor to make the donor look like the original. But again this is straight forward wrench turning. Nothing special.
Excellent Advice

One Caveat: be wary of any crown vic (or motor from a crown vic) with a P71 designation in the vin. It means it was a cop/municipal car, and unless you can seriously verify the maintenance records be wary no matter how good a deal. One of the first things that takes a hit when government agencies/local governments get squeezed for money is fleet maintenance.

Take this from someone who spent 10 years in the panther platform club scene and modified an old cop car - be very wary. Any other Crown Victoria / Grand Marquis / TC is likely a good deal as long as the oil was changed (doesn't smell gassy).

Note also: can't tell which side the intake plenum/tb/air tube run on your mountaineer - but the modern panther platform cars will all feed from the DRIVERS side, unlike the Mustang. It's not a big deal - just a heads up, I had to pull the Marauder Zip Tube from my 2000 Crown Vic to get to the oil fill in the cam cover and it never bothered me. Rubbed the painted oil-can symbol off the cap LOL but other than that . . .

Renegade Racing 4.6 SOHC: Cobra Crank, Manley Rods, Coated Diamond Pistons 10.75:1 comp w/valve reliefs, PnP CNCd NPI heads, PI intake, Comp Cams 262ah, Ferrea Valves, 70mm TB, TrickFlow, BBK LT o/r X, SCT, Exedy, FRPP 4.10 rar
2001 GT
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post #11 of 12 (permalink) Old 11-23-2017 Thread Starter
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One other question, how can I tell if my 2003 mountaineer 4.6 is an interference motor or not?
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All 4.6 and 5.4 modular motors are interference motors. That's why they have timing chains and not a belt.

2003 GT Convertible (sold & missed)
2000 GT coupe (Craigslist project. Fixed. Now my DD). Windsor to Romeo swap.
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