Mark Houlahan
Brand Manager, Mustang Monthly
May 26, 2010

Tech | Engine Bay Preparation
We've gotten things a little out of order with our '68 Mustang project buildup. The last few build stories have focused on our bodywork and the custom modifications we've done to make the car stand out from the crowd. Of course one of the stand out items for this build is what's going on underhood, and that's our '06 Mustang GT 4.6L Three-Valve we're swapping into the classic engine compartment. So before we wrap up our bodywork and actually shoot the color coat of Dark Shadow Gray Metallic, we had to wrap up all the little details that'll get our engine and transmission fitted to the chassis. The main reason, of course, is we don't want to be doing any cutting/grinding or welding on a freshly painted car. We also plan to paint the engine compartment body color, so any major changes to the inner fenders, firewall, and so on all need to be handled now so we can perform final bodywork in these areas and paint them the same time the body is painted.

We showed readers some general modular engine fitment ideas in the May '10 issue with our "Big Three" story, where Kevin Tetz outlined the major hurdles of installing the wider mod motor. We already have our Heidts Superide II front suspension crossmember in place (and we'll be showing everyone more of the actual suspension and front brake fitment here in an upcoming issue) so really all that's necessary for fitting the engine and trans is to find final placement of the assembly, ensure our driveline angles are right, and then weld up our engine and transmission mounts. We've trailered our project over to Classic Creations of Central Florida, the shop responsible for all of the great bodywork, which will be applying our paint as well, to help us with engine fitment. It has installed several Heidts front suspension kits with custom engine fitment issues (big-blocks, Clevelands, modulars) so we knew that our project was in good hands. With the welding work completed, the engine and transmission bolt in as if the car was designed for the modern drivetrain. So check out this month's progress and stay tuned as we wrap up the fastback's paintwork with some color and move on to plumbing, brakes, wiring, interior, and more, hopefully wrapping up our project by the end of the year.

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