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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Well, here is my attempt to help my fellow stangers
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>>>>>Cold Air Intake- Perhaps the best bang for the buck is the Cold Air Intake. Costing around $300 or so for one and getting solid gains of over 20 RWHP. However, the only way to properly utilize a cold air intake and to get that 20 RWHP is to get a tuner (or chip) to recalibrate the engine for the increased air volume. (see following section on tuners below) The 2 most popular and most powerful intakes for the S197 Mustang is the JLT II and the C&L intake with a properly calibrated tuner. With these new cars and all of their electronics you need to recalibrate your tune every time you adjust something to do with fuel or air going in or out of your engine. The install of the tuner itself is very simple, I myself who knew little about cars was able to do it by following these simple steps. Here is a comparison of various CAI's vs the stock airbox Cold Air Intake Comparisons - Stock Airbox - 5.0 Mustang & Super Fords Magazine provided by sizers007h

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>>>>>1)Remove the MAF sensor by using a Torx bit screwdriver (a “star” shaped bit that everybody might not have in their toolbox). Remove the stock intake by unscrewing the elbow from the throttle body. Remove the box by unscrewing the bolts from the body. Remove the tube that has the “quick-connects” attaching to the driver’s side of the block.
2)Install new CAI by installing the heat shield, then attach the elbow to the throttle body. Next attach the air filter or “cone” to the elbow which sill reside inside the heat shield. Attach the tube onto the driver’s side of the block where you disconnected the stock tube from. Screw the MAF sensor into the hole inside the elbow.

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>>>>>I daily drive my mustang through rain, sleet, snow, scorching heat, and icy cold and I have never had a problem with my CAI getting wet or anything that would inhibit me from driving because of this mod. It actually also has the nice side effect of making your exhaust tone a little deeper thanks to a greater volume of air entering the engine.

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>>>Tuner- With running the tuner, you have the option of downloading tunes created specifically for 93 octane fuel, that will utilize the higher octane and be able to draw more power out of a tank of 93 (or whatever octane you desire to increase to) through your engine just to make sure that all of the lower octane is gone, purchase the higher octane fuel, upload the tune (which consist of plugging the tuner into the OBD port beneath your steering column and following the directions the tuner gives you which are self explanatory) and driving away with some more power. I highly recommend the the SCT tuner since most aftermarket tuners use this tuner and it will make finding someone to do custom work for your car (should you need it, even easier). Here is how to locate your PCM code written up by brenspeed which you need to find in order to give to your tuner before they can write tunes for you Locating Mustang PCM Code by Brenspeed compliments of MrH08

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>>>>>Axle backs (mufflers)- Let me start off by saying do NOT “waste” your money by purchasing a “cat-back” system for the S197 GT mustang. The stock pipes flow very well and you will end up spending extra money and performing a much more aggravating install then a simple muffler swap for little to no horsepower gains. Now also keep in mind that swapping out the stock mufflers for a set of aftermarket ones is NOT going to net you any gains at all. Maybe a 1-2 HP increase but that’s about it. The stock muffler flow very well, they are just too quiet for most mustang owners so they swap them out to something aftermarket. I have had 3 different axle backs on my GT. The stock ones were far too quiet and the tips looks too small for the exhaust cut outs anyway. The second mufflers I owned were a set of FRPP (Ford Racing Performance Parts) GTA axle backs. I chose these mufflers because they feature a very nice looking 4” tip on each side and they also have NO DRONE as opposed to many other aftermarket mufflers are known to cause. “drone” is basically explained as a loud vibration that is obnoxious and not pleasant to most driver’s ears and frequently a change of rpms is needed to get rid of the noise. “drone” typically occurs between 2,000-2,5000 rpm’s (generally speaking) which ends up being where your engine is at most of the cruising time (generally speaking again), so think hard before choosing a muffler known to cause drone. The 3rd set of mufflers I have owned is a set of Pypes muffler deletes which can be compared to straight pipes basically since there is no real muffler to it at all. It’s a pipe with a tip on the end of it. Now the only reason I went with these is because of the fact that the FRPP GTA’s were not quite “loud” enough for me even though they were 10 times better than the stock mufflers. Now some states have a noise restriction on mufflers so make sure you know what your laws are before purchasing a muffler of similar stature. However, even though they are not 100% legal in the state of NJ, unless you are stepping on the gas very hard, they will not draw unwanted attention (primarily police) if you don’t want to. And driving around at night time in a residential area, just keep your foot lightly on the gas and you’ll do fine.


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>>>>>>Gears- The S197 mustang comes with 3.31’s (3.55’s are an option on the manual and 3.73’s are on the Bullitt mustang but generally speaking, most have 3.31’s) which are capable of getting considerably good mileage on the highway for a 300 horsepower mustang. Now in order to get into the “power-band” faster which occurs typically from 3,000-6,000 RPM’s, using a “shorter” gear can help you achieve it. Going to let’s say a 4.10 gears will cause the car to get into a higher gear at the same speed as a taller gear. For ex a mustang with 3.31’s doing 65MPH will be at 2,000 rpms where as a mustang with 4.10’s at the same 65 mph will be at 2,700 rpms (these are not precise numbers, just an example). So going to a 4.10 gear will give you the feel of more torque but you actually are not gaining any torque, if anything you lose a percent or two. But since you car generates different amounts of power at different RPM’s, if you match the proper gears with the rpm that you are going to be typically driving at, you can utilize the torque more efficiently since you will be closer to peak power. For ex the mustang generates 150 ft/lb’s of torque at 1,500 rpms but it generates 250 ft/lb’s at 3,500 rpms so if the engine is closer to 3,500 rpm’s it will be generating more power and hence go faster.


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>>>>> Gear install is HIGHLY recommended to be installed by a pro and follow their instructions about the proper “break-in” procedure.


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>>>>> Spark plugs- The stock mustang GT along with a few other fords like the 5.4 block in the F-150 ect come with 2-piece spark plugs. The bottom section has been known to break off and become stuck inside the cylinder head. It is my recommendation that they either be replaced with a 1 piece spark plug, or maintained on a strict regiment to avoid them becoming stuck inside the engine and breaking. If they break inside the engine, it will take a $200 tool, and a ford tech to remove the broken plug so make sure to stay on top of it.
>>>>> Rims& Tires- The front of the S197 should only have a 9 inch wide rim or 9.5 at the most with a tire preferably at 255 width or smaller if you have a smaller rim. Anything wider ends up rubbing the brakes or the inside of the fender and causing damage. *note* that all 2007+ mustang have TPMS sensors installed and if you install an aftermarket set of rims and tires without them you are going to have the warning light beep at you telling you that your psi is too low in your tires so buy new bands and either reuse or buy an additional set of sensors to mount inside of your new rims and tires if you plan on having a summer and winter set. A simple transition tool can be used to switch the sensors that are linked to the car.

I hope this gets sticky status;)

*added on 12/7/09*

>>>>>>>>Strut tower braces (STB)- Now there are several Strut tower braces out on the market for the S197 mustang. I personally have the Steeda STB and I love the styling that it gives the engine bay, and that’s why I purchased it. The S197 chassis, even the convertible like mine is extremely stiff, actually its 100% stiffer than the New edge mustang from the previous generation and there is no noticeable difference with the addition of the STB. So if you are going to buy one, buy it for aesthetics, not functionality. As for the clearance issue there are several factors to consider, first off with regard to the Plenum cover and clearance. I have the Steeda one like I mentioned before which is able to “clear the factory plenum” according to all websites, well it didn’t. I ended up having to place washers between the bolts on the towers and the STB in order to give it the slightest amount of clearance but enough so that it clears the plenum cover. The Agent 47 STB which is the highest clearance bar that will still fit under the stock hood, will not clear your positive displacement superchargers such as Whipple, Kenne Bell ect.

>>>>>>>>Rear Lower Control Arms (LCA’s)- Now from the factory the stock GT suspension is very solid feeling to most owners and feels very comfortable at high speeds to many people. One of the weak points in the suspension is the rear lower control arms, which is an important factor in “wheel hop”/traction with taking off. Purchasing one of the many control arms that are offered for the S197 can reduce “wheel hop” (which is when your tires shake up and down while trying to hook up to the pavement) and increase your traction. It’s also one of the few suspension mods that are easily visible if you look between the front of the rear wheel and the rear of the door area.

>>>>>>>>Rear Upper Control Arm (UCA)- Now this is the other control arm in the rear of the car, it attaches right to the top of the differential in the axle and to the center of the frame of the car. It is a significantly more involved installation to do then compared to the LCA's, however there is only 1 control arm in the center versus the 2 on the sides like the LCA's. I highly recommend spend the couple bucks extra to get an Adjustable upper control arm for the future. The adjustability will allow for the angle of the rear to be aligned properly should you ever lower the vehicle. The poly bushing on the UCA may transmit more NVH (Noise Vibration Harshness) then the stock one will, but thats a trade-off for the added strength and reduction of wheel hop that this UCA offers.


>>>>>>>>Panhard Bar- Like the Upper Control Arm this i also recommend you in getting an adjustable one to help realign the rear end should you get involved in other suspension work. An adjustable isn't much more then a solid one anyway. Its a simple and straight forward install as it is held in simply by 2 bolts, 1 on each side of the bar.

>>>>>>>>Twin-Screw positive displacement superchargers- Whipple, Roush TVS 2300, Kenne Bell, Saleen and Techno are most of this style of supercharger that is offered for the S197 GT 3V 4.6 engine. The twin screw design allows for lots of low end torque and off the line performance. It gives you that “push” into the back of your seat as soon as you stomp on the gas. It replaces the intake manifold with itself and sits right on top of the engine which makes it popular for “looking cool” to most.

>>>>>>>>Centrifugal Superchargers- Vortech, Paxton, Procharger are most of this style of supercharger that is offered for the S197, V6 and GT models. They are generally speaking less expensive than the other style superchargers which makes them the least expensive power adder when comparing different superchargers and turbos. They make their power at higher RPM’s unlike the other style superchargers which is good for certain applications. Its also easier to retain driveability since full boost only will hit at a higher RPM which is easier to avoid then other superchargers. The centrifugal style superchargers mount in the air intake’s flow and in the S197 its generally behind the pax side headlight/foglight region. They all come with custom air intakes since it takes the location of the stock airbox unlike the roots and twin-screw style superchargers.

>>>>>>>>Roots superchargers- Eaton, E-force, (Manacharger is a roots/hybrid design) and Roush along with others are among the Roots style superchargers. They have very few moving parts which help to make them more reliable than other superchargers but they generate incredibly high amounts of heat and often require intercoolers. Like twin-screw designs they offer great off the line performance. They also mount on top of the engine block itself.


>>>>>>>>now i am no expert by any means but i am writing this in the hopes to educate some newcomers to the modding world. If i am incorrect about something please feel free to PM me and i will make the appropriate changes. Enjoy the info everyone:bigthumbsup
 
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now maybe something for us v6 owners lol:D
 

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it's basically the same for us v6 owners lol. but yeah good write up. I know that it gets really redundant around here, but I kinda look past that, because when I was a noob to the site I didn't know how to search for threads etc lol, it took me like 10 minutes to find out how to even start a thread lol. So I kinda forgive them for making threads like "Is a CAI with a tuner worth the money"
 

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Discussion Starter #5
it's basically the same for us v6 owners lol. but yeah good write up. I know that it gets really redundant around here, but I kinda look past that, because when I was a noob to the site I didn't know how to search for threads etc lol, it took me like 10 minutes to find out how to even start a thread lol. So I kinda forgive them for making threads like "Is a CAI with a tuner worth the money"
hey its totally fine, i made more threads about CAI's and forged internals then you can imagine. It took me foreverrrrr to grasp the modding process and i wanted to pass some of my eexperiences along to others. I learn by making mistakes, maybe my mistakes can help others.

btw i typed this in 30 min flat Mark:bigthumbsup
 

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Well, here is my attempt to help my fellow stangers
>>>>>>Cold Air Intake- Perhaps the best bang for the buck is the Cold Air Intake. Costing around $300 or so for one and getting solid gains of over 20 RWHP. However, the only way to properly utilize a cold air intake and to get that 20 RWHP is to get a tuner (or chip) to recalibrate the engine for the increased air volume. (see following section on tuners below) The 2 most popular and most powerful intakes for the S197 Mustang is the JLT II and the C&L intake with a properly calibrated tuner.
Just to add, here is a article from 5.0 Magizine. http://www.mustang50magazine.com/techarticles/m5lp_0601w_cold_air_intake_comparisons/stock_airbox.html
It tests several different cold air intakes and gives ratings and horsepower gains on a 2005 Mustang GT. It gives a real detailed explaination of each intake, and can really help make your decision on which to go with. Like James said, the C&L was rated the highest overall with the JLT close behind.

now maybe something for us v6 owners lol:D
The v6 is very similar. The CAI and tune combo offers pretty much the same value as for the GT, with the C&L and JLT both offering the most common setups. A tune is also a must on a V6.

An axleback actually offer a considerable power increase on the v6, and is a very benifical mod. Here is a link to Silverbullet's thread concerning V6 exhaust. http://www.allfordmustangs.com/forums/2005-mustang-v6-tech/186159-official-2005-mustang-dual-exhaust-question-thread.html

Gears are also very similar to the GT setup James mentioned. All V6 models come with a 7.5 in rear end with 3.31 gears stock, and several upgrade to either a 4.10 or 3.73 ratio. However, unlike on a GT, the V6 does not come stock with a limited slip differential, aka Tlok. This should be installed at the same time as a gear change to maximize power to the ground and give that ever desired two wheeled burn out. Another option which many take advantage of is to buy a gt takeoff rear end with the higher gear ratio already installed. This moves you up to a 8.8in rear end which is considerably stronger. The 7.5 is plenty strong on most applications, so the stronger rear end is not required, but some find this to be just slightly more expensive then the gear and tlok install and like the added benifit of a beefier rear end. If you do get a 8.8, just to remember to get the cobra pinon flange to connect the driveshaft.

The spark plug and coil is often upgraded on a V6. 05horse has a great write up concerning this here. http://www.allfordmustangs.com/forums/2005-mustang-v6-tech/163710-05horses-do-yourself-garage.html

The V6 models can fit the same wheels as the gt. However, if your mustang came with 16 in wheels stock, you will need to buy the wheel stop from Ford that prevents rubbing. They are part number 4R3Z-3932-BA from Ford.

Hope that helps:bigthumbsup
 

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Discussion Starter #7
I love learning new things from other members. this forum's knowledge never ceases to amaze me :)
 

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Now I know that I don't have the same experiance as you guys, but just wanted to add one thing in here for the V6 owners.


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>>>>>Axle backs (mufflers)- Let me start off by saying do NOT “waste” your money by purchasing a “cat-back” system for the S197 GT mustang.
While this statement is true for maintaining the single exhaust setup if you wish to go duals you will need a cat-back system.

By the by - GREAT write up Hotshot. Wish something like this was here when I first started my research, I became very familiar with the search system very quickly :D.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Now I know that I don't have the same experiance as you guys, but just wanted to add one thing in here for the V6 owners.



While this statement is true for maintaining the single exhaust setup if you wish to go duals you will need a cat-back system.

By the by - GREAT write up Hotshot. Wish something like this was here when I first started my research, I became very familiar with the search system very quickly :D.
yes, very true. the vast majority of my write up was on the GT. aside from the gears or rims& tires which are basically universal.
 

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Great write up. I suggest adding notes on the following: upgrading the throttle body on s197 GTs (not necessary unless you have supporting mods), as well as throttle body spacers. Many new Mustang owners make the mistake of thinking these are necessary or will improve performance. Also, I would state the differences between short and long tube headers (what they offer in terms of performance gains), as well as a brief summary of the different types of forced induction (theres already a in depth write up on FI in the GT Tech section I believe). These are some of the more asked about topics I usually see from new Mustang owners. :bigthumbsup
 

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Discussion Starter #11
TB spacers i did forget to mention. Most guys get sucked in by the promise of cheap easy power
 

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Very nice write up.

In regards to gears maybe show a picture on where to locate the gear sizes via the door panel. There is also a sticker located on the gearbox itself that is viewable by simple looking at it from rear of the car. I do not know the codes on the door, but i know the sticker on gearbox is not in code.

Also in regards to a tuner, maybe a picture to identify the location of your computer code.


Here are links to brenspeed's page in regards to these. Don't know if you want them linked, or want info directly in post.

Locating Mustang PCM Code by Brenspeed



Also the torque screw for the MAF senser is a #11, if i remember correctly. Figured i'd toss it out there since its pretty uncommon.



In regards to the exhaust, Maybe we need a thread to help identify all the types of mufflers and how they effect the car. I.E. glasspacks vs muffler deletes, chambered.
 

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I have 0 performance mods on my car.

What are your thoughts on underdrive pulleys? I've seen claims of 15 RWHP on a V6 with the MotoBlue underdrives.

Also, although I don't remember where, I've seen combo deals that included CAI, Tuner, AND thorttle body. I've been wanting the C&L for my V6.

I just don't know what I want FIRST.:scratchchin I'd like to take advantage of the power gains to be had by a $200-300 bolt on, however the stock shifter is way too sloppy for me, so I want the Hurst.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
I have 0 performance mods on my car.

What are your thoughts on underdrive pulleys? I've seen claims of 15 RWHP on a V6 with the MotoBlue underdrives.

Also, although I don't remember where, I've seen combo deals that included CAI, Tuner, AND thorttle body. I've been wanting the C&L for my V6.

I just don't know what I want FIRST.:scratchchin I'd like to take advantage of the power gains to be had by a $200-300 bolt on, however the stock shifter is way too sloppy for me, so I want the Hurst.
personally, i think that UDP's are too much trouble. I have heard of people having issues with them and if your belt has an issue, you are going to need a tow truck which is a big No-No for a mod for me. They only "free-up" (because they reduce drag on your engine, not actually give you more power) about 5-7 HP. And remember you are turning your accessories less which means your alternator and A/C are getting less power.

As for your next mod you can go with either a CAI and tuner or the shifter. Personally i know you will get all 3 but its just preference as what to get next. The cai and tune is defiantly easier to install though since it took me 20 minutes going snail speed lol

IMO stay away from any aftermarket TB on the S197, there is too much electrical mumbo-jumbo with these cars and they never work correctly (99% of the time) and throws codes ect.

But since you said 2-300, i'd have to say shifter since the CAI and tune is $550ish
 

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good write up but my q is i just put on a roush filter system this past winter and doing my x pipes as we speak do not want to tell roush on the filter (voids warranty) or what tuner i is the best for my car and will take away my check engine light once i install the exh tomorrow or tell roush and get the proper setup? basis q is send my pcm to roush every time or tuner
 

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Discussion Starter #16
oh most defiantly a tuner. I assume you are getting an O/R pipe w/o cats so you will need a custom tune with the rear O2 sensors disabled which a speed shop of your choosing can do for you. The tuner also allows you to read any check engine code that your car may throw, you take the code, which for example might be P0171 which means the engine is running lean (very bad). Take the code, go online and figue out what is wrong. Or be like Mark and keep a list with you (very smart idea:bigthumbsup)of the codes and what they mean.

I recommend the SCT Xcal 3 which i have had excellent experiences with. It also allows you to do other things like change you speedo to compensate for different sized tires, or different gears ect
 

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Thanks for the help,not worry about the codes on run a Ford dealership but thanks on the tuner i just got done reading about it and yes i went with the off road x pipes and installed today and very loud with the exh i have so tomorrow we are installing the orginal exh tomorrow to see if it is better (great at idle and low rpm but 3k not so good, sounds like a truck and i don't want to spend money on exh cause going with the side exh this winter (project)
 

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personally, i think that UDP's are too much trouble. I have heard of people having issues with them and if your belt has an issue, you are going to need a tow truck which is a big No-No for a mod for me. They only "free-up" (because they reduce drag on your engine, not actually give you more power) about 5-7 HP. And remember you are turning your accessories less which means your alternator and A/C are getting less power.

As for your next mod you can go with either a CAI and tuner or the shifter. Personally i know you will get all 3 but its just preference as what to get next. The cai and tune is defiantly easier to install though since it took me 20 minutes going snail speed lol

IMO stay away from any aftermarket TB on the S197, there is too much electrical mumbo-jumbo with these cars and they never work correctly (99% of the time) and throws codes ect.

But since you said 2-300, i'd have to say shifter since the CAI and tune is $550ish


Thanks for the info. I will prob end up getting one (UDP) eventually anyway. I'm more of a windows down guy anyway.:gringreen I did find a member on here who has an ASP UDP. I checked out their site and it comes with a shorter belt. It's $299 on their site. I sent him a PM asking on what he thinks of it, still waiting on a response.

I agree with you that they don't give "more" power. They only free up what is already there, but that is what a lot of bolt-ons do. They "free up" the power that the engine is already capable of putting out. Just like a light weight balanced drive shaft. It doesn't free up ANY power in the engine, it only minimizes power loss from the engine to the wheels.

If I could actually save money while here in Iraq (thanks, divorce:head_shot::frustrated:) I'd just buy all three like you said I will do eventually. LOL
 

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sorry to hear about your money issues, but just think of it this way. You are just saving gas :) you just need to not romp on it which is impossible lol
 

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UDP's Do make a difference, I noticed a change in throttle response after the install. They also make an impact on gas mileage. Yes they are a PITA to install, but the only way you can screw it up is if use a 3 Jaw puller without anything on the screw to keep it from going in....and threading the crankshaft, or using the supplied longer bolt in place of the factory one... For these cars Steeda makes the best ones. Best rule of thumb is just don't by them used, and replace your serpentine belt after the install, since the stock one will be looser....

As far as A/C and Power Steering goes? They will not affect them, I noticed no changes in a/c temp/ power or power steering...
 
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