North American Turbocoupe Organization

New to NATO
Dennis Lynch Offline
Junior Member
Hello all, i just join the forum after owning my '87 TC 5-Speed since 1989. It has been in storage since 1993 and I have just gotten it running and on the road. I took it to my first car show yesterday. A goal I set last year and made it. I am turning to this forum to answer a question.

Background: When I parked the car it had some issues. The rear brakes where seized and I had a leak at the exhaust manifold and turbo. I had notice that things seemed to be real hot around the turbo and cooked the starter. I thought this was caused by the exhaust leak. A few years later I found the clutch was gone again.

I fixed the brakes and changed the clutch, no problem. I removed the turbo and exhaust manifold. The turbo appeared to be fine, but the exhaust manifold not so good. The threads for the turbo studs where powder!!! It also appeared that one of the holes was repaired at the factory!!! Looked like it was welded. My conclusion is that it lost clamp load and the gasket failed. I had the flange machined flat and had to helicoil the manifold to get the studs to hold. I am going to need to find a

My question: How hot should the exhaust manifold get? I can go for a ten mile drive and look at the manifold and it is glowing red! I know manifolds can run very warm, but this seems excessive. I believe this issue is not a result of the long nap the car has taken, it was there before. What could I be missing?

Any input would be great.


firebirdparts Offline
That is incredibly hot. I will experiment on mine for comparison.

firebirdparts Offline
I don't see any red. I took an IR thermometer to mine and I saw 550F, which is really not very hot. Far below glowing red temperature for iron and steel. I think much higher temperatures would be possible under a heavy load, but there was only so much I could do by rip-snorting around and then I had to stop.

I am no expert diagnostician on these things, so I don't know whether you would expect certain failures for instance that would affect the air/fuel ratio. A misfire generates a ton of heat if it can burn in the exhaust manifold, but obviously with a 4 cylinder you'd already know you had one.

Dennis Lynch Offline
Junior Member
Thanks for the info. I will get my hands on a thermometer and check it out. Someone suggested measuring the temp at each port.

Jeff K Offline
Check your ignition timing advance, and be sure the SPOUT connector is plugged in. Retarded ignition timing due to either base timing way off or no advance due to SPOUT circuit failure, shorting plug missing or connection issues, or PCM issues will cause early boost onset and glowing exhaust in short order. Incorrect cam timing can also cause this. Check cam timing for sure. Has the timing belt / tensioner been replaced by someone who knows what they are doing?

Best to post your questions in the general discussion forum, and not here in the intro forum.
Jeff Korn

88 Turbo Coupe: Intake and exhaust mods, T3 turbo at 24 psi, forced air IC, water injection, BPV, Ranger cam, subframes, etc., etc.
86 Tbird 5.0 (original owner): intake, exhaust, valvetrain mods, 100 HP N2O, ignition, gears, suspension, etc., etc.
11 Crown Vic Interceptor
14 Toyota Camry (wifes car)
95 Taurus GL Vulcan winter beater
67 Honda 450 Super Sport - completely customized

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