2.3 Turbo T5 Trouble


New Member
Jun 7, 2021
Short back story, started building a 2.3T to go into the 87 Notch in 2010, life got in the way and the project got shelved till 2018. Esslinger Dport worked over by boport, Stg3 cam, billet rods, CP pistons, 9:1 CR, 60# injectors, T3 running 20PSI, big fmic, 3" exhaust, Megasquirt ECU. ~350HP, 8.8 Rear with LSD and 3.55 gears, full SN95 brake conversion, Ford racing Alum DS, tubular upper and lower control arms, and a T5....

I've been enjoying the car for the least couple years spinning to 7K and making the stock 5L guys wonder what's up when I pull past them, but the T5's giving grief, put a 2nd T5 in, same tired T5 problem, 3rd 4th and 5th gear grumble during decel and accel from 2500-3000 and unbearable vibration due to the urethane mounts.

Spare parts I have at my disposal: Pinto C4 2.0 Bellhousing, and pedal assembly, master-slave, metal firewall steering plate/master mount, and bell from an 88 Tcoupe,
what are my options regarding transmissions, I'm running the stock T5, Stock Bell, Cable clutch, plastic quad, TC flywheel with a pyropete 4 puck. I'd like to keep the car a stick car so C4 swap is less than ideal but not impossible. I've read T56's are heavy and expensive and I really don't need a 6th gear. Has anyone done a TKO/TKX install? and if so how was it accomplished?

I know about the pilot size issue on the input shaft with the 5L T5,T56, TKO, TKX etc and the bronze bushing, but I'm not clear on how others have got the clutch worked out.

If anyone has done any of these conversions a walk though on how it was done would really be appreciated. the one thing I'm resistant to is drilling a single hole anywhere on the car for mounting anything. shouldn't be necessary as far as I'm concerned. Was my Grandfathers car bought new in March of 87.


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Is the clutch cable etc diff. on a 4cyl. with a t5 than with a 5.0? I put a tko600 in mine to replace the t5 and all i did was get the right clutch and flywheel and reused the clutch cable and arm. I did use a stifflers cross member but its not 100% needed you'll also need a diff. yoke for the drive shaft
the 2.3 and the 5L use a different Bell and clutch cable. the 2.3 Bell has a bellcrank on the side and the cable attaches to this arm then a cable runs to the fork. The flywheel and clutch are also smaller at 9-9.5" vs the 5L using a 10.5" (iirc) flywheel and clutch.

For your Bell you must have used either an earlier srod (d9) bell or a QuickTime bell? the T5 and TKO/TKX use a different bolt pattern from what I've read?
A stock v8 bellhousing can be redrilled for a tko. The 4 banger bell should be able to be modified for the tko to bolt up. ( the clutch cable mechanism and fork should be able to stay the same ) As simple as putting the bellhousing on the tko and marking where the bolt holes are, then drilling and tapping them. The 4 banger bearing retainer is the same diameter and length as the v8 t5 so it's the same for tko. The only issue I see is with input shaft. It would need to be machined down to the 4 banger size. The 10 spline clutch friction disc can't be that hard to find.

Bob Hanlon is great to deal with. He built my tko600 and it feels amazing. Shifts very smooth and sharp.
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