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Can anyone suggest a few good books or internet articles for a beginner to automotive work that describe the 302 engine, go over the inner-workings and theory behind how the engine works, and goes into detail on how to plan and build one from the ground up or modify the one you already have. I would like to have a good understanding of how a 302 engine works, and be able to apply that knowledge to my recently purchased 1966 mustang coupe.

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Hello Fishrmn703,
I think you are wise to search for books and articles about the motor.
Check out places like Mustangs Monthly.com for some great articles.

In addition to reading I would suggest a few other ideas

1. - Go to local car meets and talk to people. There are many Mustang owners who can teach you A LOT

2. - See if there is a Vocational School in the area that offers night school classes in automotive.

3. - Join a Mustang Club in your area. Once a member - go to meets and shows and inter act with people.

Ford has manuals for your year car. They come in paper or computer and are available from places like Mustangs Unlimited - -C J Pony Parts etc.

Keep asking questions and you'll learn - - Print Dad
 

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+ a million on the Ford manuals. This is info from the guys who designed and built it, written for people who had to fix the motors while they were still under warranty. (So you know Ford didn't want them screwing around!) They are usually very clear with good illustrations, and will tell you how to do anything you would want to do, other than modification. (Which would have voided the warranty, of course!) I find the earlier ones (for my '65) are much better on explaining everything (such as theory and troubleshooting), while the later ones (for my '72) sometimes seem as if they assume you know what you're doing already. Get the shop manual for your '66 and start reading! Although you have a 302 (as do I), the 289 and 302 are nearly identical.
 

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Hello Fishrmn703,
I tried to edit my post to include another idea.

When I was young, I built a "model" of a working engine. It was about 2 feet long and was made of clear plastic . You could learn how the pistons move, vavles work etc etc.
This model was not a skimpy toy. Today it would probably cost in the area of $50.00, but you can learn a real lot from building it.

I am certain if you google it - -you will find one.

The other idea I had was to go to cruise nights and talk to people. See if someone is
tearing down a motor. Ask if you could watch/help and learn.
Of course - -make sure the person is know to others. Lot's of nuts out there.

Reading will help a great deal - - but actually working on the motor will be a great lesson.

When you do get books - Keep asking questions if there are things you don't understand. Eventually you will see that these old motors are not all that complicated. Compression, fuel and spark get things going.

Don't get discouraged - - - Print Dad
 
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