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Technical Shortening up a 5.0 - 302

Discussion in 'Traditional Hot Rods' started by Old First Timer, Mar 16, 2019.

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  1. Old First Timer
    Joined: Mar 16, 2019
    Posts: 2

    Old First Timer

    Hi, I'm new to this even though I'm 71 years old - I bought a 31 Ford five window coupe and trying to build my first street rod- hoping I live long enough to actually get a ride in it.My current issue is that I purchased a 85 mustang to get the 5.0 302 drive train to transplant into the coupe - I would like to shorten up the motor and had read on here somewhere before about using a Bronco or Explorer water pump and pulleys but I have been unable to locate the information -any help with this would be appreciated - I know that there are kits out there but I'm on a tight budget and would like to do this with off the shelf parts -THANKS
    Joined: Jul 20, 2006
    Posts: 1,518


    Ford never made any other short water pumps. There is an aftermarket pump, but I can't remember who makes it
  3. 36cab
    Joined: Dec 2, 2008
    Posts: 542


  4. Bob Labla
    Joined: Aug 15, 2012
    Posts: 68

    Bob Labla
    from mitten

    Late 90's 5.0 Explorer water pump. You may have to use the timing chain cover as well. I used it in my '40, but it is a serpentine system, and I had to make my own brackets for the alternator, etc. The factory 5.0 brackets are really ugly.
    Tim and ffr1222k like this.
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  5. Bob Labla
    Joined: Aug 15, 2012
    Posts: 68

    Bob Labla
    from mitten

  6. If your starting from scratch some version of this is a better route. I did not build this Coupe, I was just playing Dr.
    Boneyard51 likes this.
  7. tjm73
    Joined: Feb 17, 2006
    Posts: 3,277


    You have two options if you want to use available everywhere for serviceability parts. Both options were OEM setups. Both have what Ford calls reverse rotation water pumps. They cannot run standard rotation water pumps. Both are a use all or nothing affair.

    The set up on the front of a '87-'96 302/351 Bronco is the same as the F series trucks and E-series vans. It puts the serpentine belt in exactly the same location as the setup already on your '85 Mustang engine.

    Setup 1: Call this the "SN95 Mustang" setup. It was OEM on the V8 '94-95 Mustangs and '91-'93 Thunderbird/Cougar


    You will need the timing cover, water pump, alternator mount, alternator w/pulley, crank pulley and water pump pulley. You will also need to add an idler pulley on the driver side as this setup. The simplest way is to also use the power steering/air conditioning bracket and swap the smooth idler already on it with a ribbed pulley. This path will gain about 1.75" of clearance at the front of the engine making the length roughly 27.5" front to back. You can trim the brackets of excess material to clean this up visually. It's all cast aluminum. The A/C-P/S bracket also provides a handy spot to mount your ignition coil.

    For reference the exceedingly common SBC is about 27" with the short pump and about 28 3/8" with the long pump.

    Setup 2: The '96-'01 Explorer/Mountaineer way. This is the shortest OEM option and will give you about another 1/8" of clearance. But may put the back of the alternator into the same space the valve cover needs to occupy depending on the type/shape of valve cover you use.


    You will need everything from the front of the 302 in these trucks. The timing cover, water pump, alternator mount, alternator w/pulley, crank pulley, water pump pulley and the A/C-P/S pump bracket. You can forgo the A/C-P/S pump bracket if you fab your own idler pulley bracket. The downside to this setup is the alternators seem to be kind of expensive if it needs replacement. I haven't priced them in a long time so that might not be true any more.

    I think the SN95 is cleaner and simpler looking. It's also easier to find and usually little cheaper. Since the Explorer setup only gains a bit more room it's value is questionable to me. Of course that is a personal preference thing.
    Last edited: Mar 16, 2019
  8. tjm73
    Joined: Feb 17, 2006
    Posts: 3,277


    I realized two things after I posted this that should not be glossed over.

    a.) Both these options eliminate the option of a mechanical fuel pump. The mount for the pump is gone on the two timing covers. And there is no room for one as a result of the shortening.

    b.) Both options were run with electric fans in the OE application. You will have to experiment to fit a mechanical fan or run an electric fan.
  9. irishsteve
    Joined: Jan 10, 2017
    Posts: 154


    Good chance reversing your firewall is in your future.Your going to need more room even with the shorter pump.
    Pist-n-Broke likes this.
  10. Not to mention that both options posted by tjm73 cannot have anything related to Alt. or Power steering pump modified at all and that will put both items clear outboard and behind the Headlights. Now that's assuming your going to be running headlights in the stock location. Maybe you'll start a new trend.
  11. deathrowdave
    Joined: May 27, 2014
    Posts: 1,431

    from NKy

    Ford Motorsports did sell a short pump and all that is needed to use it . Snowwhite engineering is another option . I shortened my own pump and used a combination of salvage yard pullies that I have no idea of what they where other than the lower is a short pump SBC , double grove . It is completely flat to give you an idea as to how much can be gained .
    Joined: Jul 20, 2006
    Posts: 1,518


    This is a big problem with Ford 302 engines, they are just too long. Aftermarket water pump will be the only option that will work out
  13. Roothawg
    Joined: Mar 14, 2001
    Posts: 18,502


    Also, you need to keep in mind that if you use a front sump pan, you lose your dipstick provision. I am battling this with my 1999 Explorer 5.0.
  14. dumprat
    Joined: Dec 27, 2006
    Posts: 2,161

    from b.c.

    I used E150 van bits from the 60's. It is 29" to the front of the water pump where the fan mounts. And the crank pulley is back an inch and a half or so.

    And you don't have to run the EFI junk.
  15. LM14
    Joined: Dec 18, 2009
    Posts: 1,419

    from Iowa

    Check the combination on my build thread. Think it ended up between a long water pump and short water pump Chevy small block. Mine is 28.5" bell housing flange to tip of fan. You can to it with a right hand lower hose so you can use a Chevy radiator (cheaper), simple pulleys and parts commonly available.

    Speedway timing cover (1971)
    Stock 1969 Galaxie/Fairlane/Mustang water pump
    Speedway chrome pulleys (cheapos)
    Pro Products harmonic balancer to get the 50oz imbalance and the 3 bolt lower puller bolt pattern.

    Simple, and you still have a mechanical pump mount. Also use the chrome off the shelf unit for mounting the alternator on the right side.

    Last edited: Mar 16, 2019
    Malcolm and craig b blue like this.
  16. southcross2631
    Joined: Jan 20, 2013
    Posts: 2,562


    used this setup on my 5.0 powered Morris Minor . It is a Lincoln front mount brackets that I cut down and relocated the idler pulley and used the Ford motorsports water pump and pullies. See regulator mounted on former a/c ,p/s bracket. I am using the 140 amp Lincoln alternator DSCF0956.JPG DSCF0955.JPG
  17. cammer8
    Joined: Aug 1, 2016
    Posts: 34


    I have a 1968 Ford 302. I ordered a CVF( Short )racing water pump and pulleys to match. $309. The pump outlet is located on the drivers Side of motor. It will shorten the length 1 1/2 inches. The only question I have is which harmonic balancer (aftermarket) will go best with this system? My stock balancer is shot. Trying not to use spacers.
    Last edited: Mar 17, 2019
  18. Old First Timer
    Joined: Mar 16, 2019
    Posts: 2

    Old First Timer

    THANKS to all for the reply's - A little more info - when I purchased the car a few months ago they firewall was already reversed - The car I have in mind is no fenders - lakester style headers - no PS or PB or AC.I have already purchased a fuel cell and electric pump- has anyone done this with a v-belt configuration - Thanks to all
  19. LM14
    Joined: Dec 18, 2009
    Posts: 1,419

    from Iowa

    Mine is V belt
  20. sunbeam
    Joined: Oct 22, 2010
    Posts: 3,907


    It's possible that an electric may be the shortest and cheapest
  21. I used a '84 Mustang 5.0 302 in my Ranch wagon and trashed all the serpentine crap on the front of the engine and purchased a new water pump (non reverse ) and purchased March V belt pulleys.

    I gained several valuable inched of clearance.

    With this being your first build I can tell you putting a Ford engine in a Model A you will be faced with a series of compromises, first the Ford engine is longer than the sbc, as someone mentioned earlier Snow White offers a modified kit to shorten the front of a Ford and uses a Opal water pump and more often than not you will also have to modify the firewall, when you start loosing interior leg room is a hard pill to swallow if your long legged.

    If that happens you can alway remove the package try behing the set and increase your interior space. HRP
  22. Do it Over
    Joined: Dec 25, 2017
    Posts: 82

    Do it Over

    I'm installing a 1988 5.0 in my 1935 Ford 5W. Using a Snow White water pump with V-belts. I does shorten things about 2". Has passenger side hose. They make their own alternator mount that mounts on the drivers side. Don't think there's much room for a mechanical fan unless I can find on 14" dia. I can take some pics tomorrow if you like.
  23. JeffB2
    Joined: Dec 18, 2006
    Posts: 7,298

    from Phoenix,AZ

    Give this a read and check out the thread I wrote in Post #5 Ford does have a "short" pump that matches up to a shorter harmonic balancer Here is that damper:,1802.html?OriginalQuery=910-15365 Read the Small Block Ford section here too: Also when you use the pre-1970 water pump and damper the V belt pulleys are shallower and do not stick out as far.
  24. Budget36
    Joined: Nov 29, 2014
    Posts: 2,036


    For the love of everything good, if he chooses either route, keep the hood closed.
    Blues4U and Hombre like this.
    Joined: Aug 23, 2016
    Posts: 216


    I have SBF engines in 2 1939 Fords. Ford motor sports sells a short v belt set up - but still have to cut the firewall.

    Sent from my iPhone using The H.A.M.B. mobile app
  26. NewGuyOldFord
    Joined: Jan 17, 2011
    Posts: 516


    The ford explorer 5.0 is the shortest front dress available. I know it's serpentine but it does provide clearance. When using a front sump pan with this setup, just weld a bung in the front of the pan and run a screw in dipstick tube and mark the dipstick accordingly. I put this setup in my 48 ford with rear sump explorer pan, no cut firewall, explorer clutch fan and have still almost two inches to the radiator in it's stock location. Granted, the radiator is an aftermarket aluminum 64-66 mustang one but it is sitting right where the flathead one was mounted. So, all in all, besides the serpentine belt drive not looking traditional, it is a relatively compact setup for us FORD lovers.
  27. IMHO, if Snow or another company has a shorter water pump that does not require the use of idler pulleys & tensioners, use it.
    All the pulleys & tensioner & the mile long belt would look terrible in an open engine bay, like a hot rod.
    Way too much clutter.
  28. thirtytwo
    Joined: Dec 19, 2003
    Posts: 2,496


    You boys sure go through a lot of work to “keep a ford in a ford”
    missysdad1, Blues4U and da34guy like this.
  29. nobby
    Joined: Jan 8, 2006
    Posts: 296


    I think the secret is a
    marydyne flex fan
    edelbrock do a early style water pump - exits 66 style -chevy side if you like,
    but uses the mid 70's impellor, so you can run the later 70's timing cover, but still keep the dip-dtick hole and manual fuel pump boss
    also use the timing cover with the front load seal
    that fan has the blades to the rear, misses the belt
    if you like -seeing as I have all 3 parts off the motor, could measure it all up for youi?
    -you may not wish to run a engine driven fan,
    but it means you can have the water pump tip 1/4'' - 1/2'' away from the rad.
  30. bowlingball
    Joined: Oct 24, 2008
    Posts: 91

    from Australia

    In Aus we tend to use an adapter I think still available from Rod Hadfield or Dellow engineering for a Holden 186 ci (Gm 6 cylinder) short water pump adapter, pumps are cheap $24/$35 each and I'm sure an Aussie hamber could hook you up with some

    Sent from my iPad using The H.A.M.B. mobile app
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