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Customs Ford 302 to Borg Warner T-86/R10

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by ST63, Aug 28, 2020.

  1. ST63
    Joined: Aug 28, 2020
    Posts: 8

    ST63

    Apologies ahead of time to those who've seen or participated in a thread on this particular combo, but I haven't found any specifics on it so far. Looking to swap out my tired old flathead V-8 for a newer Ford 302 in my 49 Shoebox Ford. (Sacrilegious I know but bear with me) I want to keep the 3 pedal setup and the original Borg Warner 3 speed column shift with R10 O.D. Has anyone done this swap and/or know whether the t-86 will bolt to the 6 bolt bell housing of the 302? I saw a thread where a guy mated the T-86 to an early 289 with the 5 bolt bell, but those are harder to find these days. I swear I remember the 302 with this particular tranny in late 60's or early 70's F100's, but may be mistaken. Any info is greatly appreciated.
     
  2. birdman1
    Joined: Dec 6, 2012
    Posts: 1,370

    birdman1
    Member

    You need the bell housing from a 1964 or earlier 289. A 6 bolt will fit your block.
     
    ST63 likes this.
  3. Ford changed both the trans pattern and SBF bellhousing bolt pattern in '65, so a early '62-64 SBF bell that matches your trans won't fit your motor. Ford did make some 'service replacement' bells for the '65-up SBF that had both patterns, but those are very rare. They were built to allow installation of a six-bolt-bell motor in the earlier car in case of a motor replacement without having to change the trans. Ford did continue to offer the OD trans in cars through '66 IIRC, and in trucks until '70 or '71, so any '65-up OD will connect to the later bell. But these are also very rare...

    You can't re-drill the late aluminum bell as there's not enough meat in the casting for the bolts. Ford also built a cast-iron bell for truck applications that may be possible to re-drill, but it uses an oddball flywheel that's not available in the 50 oz balance factor. Another rare part in any case...

    You do have an out; Lakewood still makes a SBF scattershield that's drilled for both trans patterns but it's not cheap.

    One last thing. Ford also changed the size of the front bearing retainer on the trans making it larger, your smaller one won't register the trans correctly. A later, larger version is available and is a bolt-on.
     
    ST63 likes this.
  4. ST63
    Joined: Aug 28, 2020
    Posts: 8

    ST63

    Thanks, I recall reading somewhere that the 6 bolt bell couldn't be re-drilled, but wasn't aware of the Lakewood option.
     

  5. X-cpe
    Joined: Mar 9, 2018
    Posts: 1,407

    X-cpe

    Is it possible/practical to take a hole saw and open up a spot in the bell housing where each trans mounting bolt needs to go, then weld a bung in the hole and drill and tap it?
     
    Hnstray likes this.
  6. Ford didn't put any more meat into that bell than was needed, so they're awfully thin where the bolts would need to go. The 'service' bells they built with both patterns had considerable reinforcing added to accommodate the earlier pattern so I'd be very hesitant to try that. The main reason Ford changed it was to reduce the 'leverage'/stress the narrow pattern put on the bell and trans mounting ears. I think this was more of an issue with the big-block cars, but Ford didn't want two patterns so they all got changed.

    There is a possible fix if your fab skills are up to it. Quicktime uses a bracket they call a 'spider' inside their bells that is basically to add enough thickness for drilling/tapping the trans bolts. Theirs is welded in, but it should be possible to fab a steel bolt-in version that could attach with the 'wide pattern' bolts and furnish the inner narrow pattern. You'd probably have to spot-face around the bolts inside the bell for a uniform mounting surface and the spider mounting ears would need to be 'stepped' to get the 'narrow' part of the spider fully flat against the inside of the bell. You'll have to dodge or rework the clutch pivot bracket. You may have to also skim a bit off the trans mounting face as most bells aren't flat all the way across; the area around the input bearing retainer and mounting bolts/perimeter are a bit higher than the inner part, failure to address this could lead to a cracked bell or broken trans mounting ears if there's any gap.

    Or possibly fab an thick aluminum plate that would fill the area inside the bell between the wide pattern, then tig weld it in. Watch out for warping, and this may require even more machine work inside the bell.
     
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  7. sunbeam
    Joined: Oct 22, 2010
    Posts: 5,609

    sunbeam
    Member

    Lake wood #15200
     
    ST63 likes this.
  8. Hnstray
    Joined: Aug 23, 2009
    Posts: 12,306

    Hnstray
    ALLIANCE MEMBER
    from Quincy, IL

    @ST63

    Summit racing....$622.95
     
    ST63 likes this.
  9. ST63
    Joined: Aug 28, 2020
    Posts: 8

    ST63

    Thanks for the specifics on the Lakewood bell.
     
  10. dan c
    Joined: Jan 30, 2012
    Posts: 2,351

    dan c
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    lakewood bell works, but you may need to clearance the floors on your '49. also, you'll probably have to fabricate an adapter for the hole where the trans' input shaft goes. the retainer in your stock trans is too small. i think a cast iron bellhousing for a small sbc flywheel may be a better choice.
     
    ST63 likes this.
  11. ST63
    Joined: Aug 28, 2020
    Posts: 8

    ST63

    Thanks for the tip...I figured the floor and firewall will need some massaging to make a 302 with an aftermarket bell fit. I'm learning that my other option is using a 5 bolt early 289 motor, which will bolt directly to the T-86 and not require floor mods, though it will still require some firewall mods.
     
    Last edited: Sep 10, 2020
  12. dan c
    Joined: Jan 30, 2012
    Posts: 2,351

    dan c
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    probably not easy to find!
     

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