North American Turbocoupe Organization

  Runs Cool No Matter What
Posted by: AloofMaalouf - Yesterday, 04:50 AM - Replies (10)

I'm going to try and keep this short but I ramble, 2.3 Turbo from an 86 Thunderbird in a 74 Pinto Wagon, I have always had an overcooling problem since I put this engine in, didn't really care because the car was hacked and cobbled together by yours truly but now I'm starting to care about the little things and fix them up. I know that it is not running anywhere close to peak efficiency at the temperature it runs at. Another reason why this has become more important to me is that I recently graduated from college (which was a long freeway commute) and got an office job (which is a 15 minute drive). I don't even get to 160 by the time I'm in the structure, which means I don't get to romp on it day to day as I am so accustomed to.  Sad

I know what most of you are thinking, at least one of two things, the first being exactly what my dad and other car guy friends have told me, "just be glad it's not overheating."  Dodgy The second response I foresaw would be obviously thermostat, this is my 5th thermostat that I just installed tonight, first I tried the stock 86 Tbird thermostat, discovered that the design was shitty from the factory to accommodate a stupid mistake that they made (they were supposed to run the heater core hose between the engine and the thermostat but they mistakenly designed it to be on the thermostat housing, where all it will get is cold coolant until the car fully warms up so they designed this special thermostat that doesn't seal properly due to it's shitty design to bypass that mistake, funny little piece of Ford history). After that didn't work twice, I tried an external thermostat on the upper rad hose, stupid idea, don't know why they even make and sell **** like that but I guess I'm stupid enough to buy and try it.

This was a whole other mess, long story short thermostat wasn't opening because it just wasn't getting a constant stream of coolant so the coolant would expand a lot mimicking a head gasket leak, thought this was my issue since I push as much boost as I can from what I have, around 20 psi. Changed the head gasket, dumbest waste of time ever, head gasket that I pulled looked perfect (at least I upgraded to ARP head studs so there's that). Anyway, then I tried two different generic thermostats that fit in the housing, as I found that other people have said that this works if you don't care about your heater a terrible amount, which I don't since I don't have a heater core anyway, I guess another important thing to note about my motor is that I have blocked off all hoses other than rads, so the stock turbo cooling system, the stock oil cooling system, the one that goes from the intake for whatever reason that is. I should mention that all the thermostats I've tried are 192 or 195 thermostats and I know how to bleed the cooling system, interestingly enough it seems to swallow up all the coolant around 150 on the gauge, but why? Always the same with all these thermostats. Also I use a new thermostat gasket each time with The Right Stuff gasket sealer on both sides and a little around the thermostat's sealing point, I'm very careful not to get any sealer anywhere near the functioning part of the stat.

Either way both those thermostats didn't warm the car up to my utter shock because literally what else could it be... I'm at a total loss at this point, I've spent pretty much every day after work trying different **** to get the thing to work correctly. Any advice or suggestions would be appreciated but honestly at this point I think I need a break from looking at thermostats and getting coolant on my hands, not really, I just want a plan for what to try when I recover from this trauma lol. Thanks guys.

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  quick update and T5 swap in the 88TC!
Posted by: ryandavkd - 09-28-2022, 03:33 AM - Replies (4)

Hey guys! Been a while since i've posted nay updates on here about my 88TC. Had my driver side wheel bearing blow on the highway and almost ran me into a median, after getting the car towed home I left it to sit for a few months without any motivation to fix it. Debated on selling it as I have a few other cars that I'm working on as well  (along with college and work) so i always had my hands full. Finally got some motivation to get her fixed after seeing it covered in dust in front of my apartment and finding a "we buy junk cars" card on the windshield. Little do they know as dirty as she is, she only has 28k miles on her so she cleans up very nice!

Took forever to find the right spindle as when the bearing blew it sheared the spindle quite a bit so new inner bearings wouldn't fit on. Ended up spending about 300$ on spindles from salvage yards on ebay and such haha, the first time i didn't research quite enough and didn't see that the spindle from a 2.3 foxbody wouldn't fit my struts. Decided screw it and proceeded to angle grind down the top part pf the spindle where it sits in the front strut, after about 3 hours it was able to fit, just to find out that the caliper mounting brackets didn't fit my rotor lol. So after a lot of foul language I got back onto ebay and found a spindle from what stated was a mustang GT which would fit! After a week of waiting it arrived and was actually off of a 2.3, meaning it would not fit. Ordered another one and this time it was actually off of a GT however the spindle had a few marks on the underside and after what happened with my last bearing, I was not going to take any chances so I put it aside, and found a great condition one from a part yard near me in LA. After finally putting my new spindle on, I decided that I might as well replace the passenger side as well. This time it went much smoother and I had it on by the end of the week. Got a new set of rotors and brake pads as well since my wheels were already off!

Now that the car is on the road again I decided that I want to start making some power, besides my 3" stinger exhaust and cone filter the car is bone stock motor wise. Unfortunately I have the A4ld which means that if I want to do anything else ill need to swap in a T5. So now I have a new project for this car! I'm going to start gathering all of the parts needed, I plan on doing the swap myself for 2 reasons: 1. im a broke college student and the swap itself will cost quite a bit let alone paying someone to do it for me and 2. I dont feel like its a car I "built" myself if I'm paying someone to do all the hard work for me.

Did quite a bit of research on here as well as turboford and the Stinger website, I gathered the list of parts that I believe Ill need so feel free to add anything that I'm forgetting

-t5 transmission from 4cyl mustang/turbo coupe
-wiring harness
-clutch plate
-pressure plate
-shifter trim from an 87/88 TC
-hydraulic pedal assembly (decided to go hydraulic after reading through the forum as it seemed to be the easiest)
-clutch slave/master cylinder with the hose and reservoir
-clutch fork

Would I be able to use the t5 out of a ranger with the lima 2.3? I seem to have a much easier time finding those trannys available and for much cheaper.

prices on this stuff surprised me quite a bit, definitely didn't expect to see those prices on t5 trannys. so this swap will take me quite a bit as it isnt as cheap as I first thought haha

anyone that has any of these parts available feel free to Pm or leave a comment, id feel much better buying from a member on here than someone else online Smile If you're located in California I'm willing to drive to pick it up with my truck if not then ill gladly pay the shipping cost!

Thanks in advance guys!

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  88 Turbo Coupe'
Posted by: Oliver C. - 09-26-2022, 09:26 PM - No Replies

After being overseas for over 30 years, I finally came back to see my 88 that's been in storage since mid 90's.  I hate to do it, but I am planning to sell it.  It is a manual 5 speed. Gray leather interior, and all the bells and whistle for that model.  No one has driven except just moving it from one storage to another (picture attached).  I don't have a recent picture just yet as I just came back.  But will post in a week or two I'm hoping.  Picture attached is from several years back but is quite the same as of now except for "thicker" dust and dirt on the car I'm sure.  The car includes front, side and rear kits, plus spoiler with after market rims (white k-stars). Rim and tires I believe were 18's.    An attached pic from a car show is also included that looks similar to my car and how it is set up.  

If you are interested I can be reached at [email protected]  That's the easiest way to get a hold of me while I'm in the U.S.  Thank you.  And unfortunately, I do not currently have an asking price just yet.  More to come.

Attached Files Thumbnail(s)
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Question Does anyone run a catch can
Posted by: DaleLeo - 09-25-2022, 11:24 PM - Replies (2)


I have an '84 (soon to be) highly modified. '84 TC
I have a catch can on my Raptor and like it a lot (all that oil isn’t on my valves).
Does it make sense to use a catch can on a TC?  I'm not that conversant on different injection mechanisms, thus my question.
Thank You

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  87 tbird passenger door latch
Posted by: vegas_ss - 09-15-2022, 07:17 PM - Replies (2)

Need a door latch for the passenger door on a 87 tbird and was looking to find what other model cars/truck would use the same door latch (if any) as so far I am not able to locate one.

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  WTB 87 Tbird passenger door latch
Posted by: vegas_ss - 09-15-2022, 07:15 PM - No Replies

Looking for a passenger door latch assembly in good condition for a 87 tbird.  Reply with price shipped to 89149.

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Posted by: DavidArthur - 09-13-2022, 02:12 AM - Replies (7)

Hello everyone, first time joining a car forum and glad to see theres still people active on this website. Getting info off 10-20 year old post has its limits. Anyways this summer my dad gave me his 88 tbird tc with 107k. (I am 22 by the way) I've really gotten into cars the past few years out of highschool and own about 8 different vehicles so ive tinkered around in this mechanic world to a degree. My dad bought the car new so I am the second owner. Sadly in 2008 he lost most of his vision and could no longer drive safely and thats when the car started to sit. The tags ran out in 2012 and got started maybe once or twice since then. Luckily it was parked on a carport so its in fairly decent condition. Since june of this year i have done multiple things to it just to get it running. Fuel pump, fuel tank, all the filters, new tires, brakes, rotors, oil change, spark plugs, new clutch coming this week and so on. I recently tried flushing the cooling system and saw how nasty the radiator was so i ordered a mishimoto aluminum one. Bleeding the cooling system was the first time the car ran for longer than a few minutes and discovered the radiator fans would not run. I read somewhere (been all over the internet recently so can not remember where) that if the main fan (pass side) ran upon engine starting then cuts off that the computer is good? I read that the engine coolant temp sensor (ECT) controls the fan, i believe? Replaced it yesterday and no luck. Did see coolant so so blockage to the sensor. Checked the thermostat today and found it would not open in boiling water. Replaced it today with no luck. I discovered that once up to temp while bleeding the air out I got a check engine light. I read on here how to jump the pigtail and make the engine light flash. i simply took a video of it ~1 minute 50 seconds flashing. From what i see is this:



The space is a delay in the blank. Not sure what any of this means or if I counted the blinks correctly. Possible 41 & 65? system lean & ECt test sensor below test minimum? Also want to add that while waiting for it to reach temp i gave it a few revs and blew what i though was a decent amount of brown water out the exhaust. I seem to be getting over my head but if any of you guys have info or could point me in some direction i would be more than pleased. Sorry for the long post just wanted to share what I believe to know about it.

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  Sons T bird
Posted by: Turboscott - 09-12-2022, 09:54 AM - Replies (5)

Guys we started having a issue after him driving the car for several months. It quit on him at the local convenience store do I went and pulled him home. You can cycle the key several times meaning 7-8 and it will start and run great with no issues. If you just turn on the key and try to start it it will crank forever and no start. I’ve changed the fuel filter and the old one was free flow as can be. The codes are 23 and 83 and them blink twice. Meaning 23 again then 83 again. Then it pauses and throws a 72 and then 72 again. I put on a brand new IRMC also. I’m at a lose here.

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  Short Throw Shifter Advice Please
Posted by: DaleLeo - 09-11-2022, 11:48 PM - Replies (5)


I want to get a short throw shifter and am looking at MGW.  Does anyone have any experieince with this or another brand?

What transmission does an '84 have-- is it a T5?

Thank You


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  Another Charging Issue - what am I missing?
Posted by: John B - 09-08-2022, 07:02 PM - Replies (5)

Seems like once a year, I have some sort of charging issue. Last week, I noticed that the battery voltage was a little low (compared to previous drives) with the car running. This past weekend, I lost all charging. This is an 88TC with a 3G PA Performance alt. Here's what I have checked thus far:
- Battery is good. 1 year old, 12+ volts at terminals when car isn't running
- I have voltage at output post on alternator 
- Regulator plug checked out: yellow wire has constant voltage, green/red wire has voltage with key on, and white/stator wire has continuity from both plug ends
- Belt is tight

I installed a brand new, spare 3G alternator and this also did not charge. I spoke to PA Performance and they mentioned two possible culprits:
- Regulator plug is not making good contact with the regulator on the alternator (I have a replacement plug on the way)
- Grounding issue

In regards to the grounding issue, I believe this could be an issue as I'm using powder coated brackets from Big R Motorsports and I don't have a ground cable off the back of the alternator. The alternator was charging before so I'm not sure if the ground wire is the full issue here. I will see if this and or the regulator plug fix the issue. 

In the meantime, is there anything else that anyone can think of that could cause this issue? A blown fuse link somewhere? Anything? Been chasing this for a few days now so any help is appreciated.

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Runs Cool No Matter What
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quick update and T5 swap ...
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