Factory Five Racing Forum banner

1 - 16 of 16 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
52 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Ok i just began tearing down my 5.0 from a 88 GT donor with a more experienced friend and he made a strong case for ditching all the FI stuff down to the lower intake and going with edelbrock lower and a carb (or two). There are a buncha reasons why i had originaly thought FI was better; More power and efficiency, lower maintenence, automatically adjusts to varying conditions... But the carb seems to have advantages also. I hear it is a cheaper way to get power and is much simpler for a novice car guy to do a modest rebuild with a carb setup (especially for troubleshooting).

I welcome any advice on this subject. I think that a carburator does enhance the vintage look, and i could replace the junky looking parts that are currently sitting atop the block which def. look cruddy. How much of the fuel system would i have to replace on this 14 year old engine anyway if i stayed with FI? If i have to go replacing the injectors and fuel rails and all this business the carb option may be cheaper. Any feedback even if a little off topic would be great, i can tell by the posts here that you gearheads do some crazy stuff with your engines. Oh by the way, i don't have gobs of money, so cost is a big issue. Thanks all, i am gonna go watch TV and rub my belly until it stops hurting.
-Jon
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,506 Posts
Yeah, carb really helps that original look. You should go carburated, and then I will gladly take the efi stuff off your hands. Pretty Please?
 

·
Senior Charter Member
Joined
·
365 Posts
You should do a search on this topic. It has been discussed several times before. If you go carb you might to have to buy the following depending on your setup:

Intake Manifold
Carb
Distributor
Ignition System
Throttle Linkage
Air Cleaner
Fuel Pump
Modified Fuel Tank Pickup
Fuel Pressure Regulator

My father converted his EFI motor into a carb set up and spent around 1K doing it. I am sure you can do it for less but he used all new parts. The EFI stuff you have is only worth a few bucks in the used parts market.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,158 Posts
Doc,
My car is carb'd, and I'm happy with the potato. Nice and cheap, good power, and if you want the original look, it's there. Plus, there's nothing like the smell of exhaust. :cool: By the way, if you guys need assistance, I can refer you to a mechanic in West Chester. He builds Cobras and has a fleet of about 17 Cobras that he does the maintainance on, including mine (I lack skills to do the work myself). He is excellent (he has a Cobra of his own with a 514 ci motor), and only charges $35/hour labor.

Steve
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
183 Posts
If you want opinion from others to drive your answer, this is NOT the question to ask. There are die hards on either side of the fence and you can get hundreds supporting each side. Kartman above kept FI even though he didn't say. I am a strong proponent of FI, but I will answer your other question on reliability.

The reliability answer somewhat depends on where the donor parts were. If in a junk yard for some time, you may have parts that are bad from the get-go. Stock parts will get you dozens of free donors from this site, but in order of failure - the first parts to go are ignition related - the TFI module (side of outside of distributor) - $60 Motorcraft, cheaper white box. Stator (a.k.a. hall effect transducer, pickup, etc.) - inside distributor - $38 (Motorcraft price I think). They'll last anywhere from 60K miles to 150K (after 150K you're on borrowed time). The only injectors I've heard of failing are rare - a bunch of us have upgraded so injectors are "free". Same with Mass Air Flow meter. ECT sensor and ACT (engine coolant and air charge temp sensors) - haven't priced in a while - they're cheap and last a long time. Processor - I've only seen failed processors from wiring mishaps, shorts, etc. Used they go for anywhere from $50 - $100. I think a Ford reconditioned one goes for about $200. O2 sensors are around $30 each - there are 2 of them, they last around 100K miles or more unless you run trash (like coolant) through them. MAP sensors go bad infrequently, they're maybe $30. OEM fuel pump replacements are relatively cheap - $50 - but again you may get a "free" used one since many of us upgrade in our quest for more power.

As you stated, no adjustments, no hassles, perfect start every time. The general rule of thumb is that you'll make a little more HP on a carb motor (5-10), but conversely, the area under the curve for a FI motor is a little better for torque. You'll maybe see the HP difference in top end, but on accelleration you probably feel the torque advantage all the time with FI (brouder, smoother torque band).
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
45 Posts
Doc , I chose a carb setup because I wanted to go the original look.Plus I can work on it!,No computer to deal with. I felt there was a lot less wiring to figure out. Granted the harness is mostly plug in, but to trouble shoot it, well I felt I could not do it. I am very happy with the carb set up. Plus I'm a big nascar fan, and they make over 800 hp with a good old carb. Good luck with your build.
 

·
Charter Member
Joined
·
261 Posts
I am with Jimbo, carb is the way to go. I have a 302 carb and she is AWESOME. You will have the look and power all in one........
 

·
Senior Charter Member
Joined
·
355 Posts
I stayed with mostly stock FI and replaced the little parts (O2 sensors, ACT, ECT, and TFI module) during the build. I also replaced the upper intake with a Hartman PowerBox upper to make it look a little cleaner. The upper has not hurt the low-end power at all, or if it has, I couldn't tell because it doesn't hook up anyway.
The Hartman upper is now sold by Comp Cams. I bought mine off the The Corral for about $80.
Like in the previous post, You're going to get a thousand opinions for each. Go with what you think is better for you and what you are comfortable with. But, don't be scared of EFI because you don't know anything about it. It is not that complicated.

Chris :cool:
 

·
FFCobra Master Craftsman
Joined
·
2,034 Posts
I'm on both sides of the fence. Both are great. These car are quick with a stock 302. If you are looking at building a high horse power motor I would go carb. If you want a great running,very user friendly car I would stick with injection. The high performance intake parts for injection are a lot more$$$ than a carb. I put 3:55's in the rear and with a stock 5.0 FI 5 speed it runs 13.0 all day long.
Jeff Hamilton
 

·
Rapscallion
Joined
·
1,969 Posts
Jon,
I'm not going to address the carb/efi issues but if you go with a carb do not make the mistake many others have by over carbing. If you are not stroking the engine then stick in the 600cfm range and go with a Holley, Demon or AED.
Roscoe
 

·
Senior Charter Member
Joined
·
540 Posts
I converted a 1997 GT-40p headed Explorer/Mountaineer 5.0 to a carb. This motor had a coil pack so no distributor was presant and the wiring that came with the motor was all wrong for a Cobra/Streetrod according to Ford's SVO department. Here is what I used to convert from a F.I. to a Carb:
Holley 600 Vac secondary $220
Edelbrock performer RPM intake $145
Mallory Unilight mechanical advance Distributor $225
MSD Blaster Coil $35
Moroso plug wires $40
Gaskets $25
Mallory ballast resistor $12
I am using a Holley Blue pump with the adj pressure reg $87

All the above totals about $790 but I needed a distributor and wires anyway. The wiring harness for the complete car came from EZ-Wiring and cost under $200.
Sold GT-40 intake with throttle body and cleared about $200 so that saved some money.

This combo put 267Rear Wheel Hp and 285 rear wheel torque on a chassis dyno. The cam is a trick flow stage one.

IMHO a carb will put out more top end HP than a stock or slightly modified F.I. setup. The F.I. setup will generate more HP and torque under 4000rpm and partial throttle due to more efficiant fuel managemant. Carbs work best under full throttle and under loads. The long tubes of the F.I. systems help flatten the torque curve but can create a bottleneck at High RPM.
 

·
Senior Member
Joined
·
541 Posts
there's no real savings in either case. it'll cost you either way. it really just boils down to: what do you want? the "i can fix a carb" vs. "electronic jungle" only applies when & if your broken down - fact is, most are never broken down, I don't think it's a viable consideration. just simple, personal, taste (or lack thereof
)
ffr1391 302/carb'd and love it.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,059 Posts
This has always been a hot topic, with good points on both sides of the issue.
It all boils down to what you want. Period authentic look, or the ultimate in reliability and drivability. I went EFI on the CObra and am going Carb on the Coupe.
I was very hesitant to go the EFI route on my Cobra. But now am very glad that I did. The electronics are very basic once you sit down and read up on the way the system works. As for HP. The EFI will outperform a carb on the stock motor.
Yes you can Dyno tune your carb setup to get optimum power, but as soon as the weather changes or you drive to a higher altitude, your back to the same under or over jetted situation.
I have two older mustangs, and always hated the wintertime issues of trying to keep them running right. So i'm converting one over to EFI now.
The EFI can easilly support a 500 hP motor, with mods.

But like I said, I'm building one of each.

Brad

 

·
Registered
Joined
·
52 Posts
Discussion Starter #15
Thanks everyone for their advise, although i think it may have gotten me farther from a decision it helps to be better informed.

Klayfish, i would love to meet up with you sometime when weather permits, see your car and chat about the project. You can email me at [email protected] or call at 610 804 4494 (cell) and 610 293 0974 (home). I tried to find info on you from ffcars to contact you but was unsuccessful.
thanks again guys, i'll tell you what i come up with

Jon Scholz
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
4,703 Posts
I was at the same crossroad not too long ago. I was all set on the Carb. I like the automatic mixture adj. on FI. I purchased a book and had alot of help from Steve Wurfel. I now staying with the FI setup. Search past threads on that issue.
 
1 - 16 of 16 Posts
Top