New member taking all 2 cents

May 25, 2020
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got a 1997 mustang 3.8L v6 from family member for free with well over 200,000 miles on it is drivable and drives very well, rear-end has been replaced and that's all i know.

MY question.....What would be better to either rebuild the engine or replace the engine??? and what bigger size can plug and play with that model. NOT MECHANICALLY INCLINED AT ALL!!!
 
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Potomus Pete

Is there a trick , or does my wife just hold it
Mar 7, 2019
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Does the Car noob have seven thousand for a motor and a mechanic. That is the question you should be askin. If so you are going to have a fun car.
 

Mstng93SSP

You have a nice rear end there Dave.
15 Year Member
Nov 29, 1999
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No offense intended but if you are not at all mechanically inclined you are better off selling the car and buying something with a different engine. If I had to pay labor on any of my builds I would be poor(er).

Chris
 
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CarMichael Angelo

clearly, I’ve got something going on in that hole
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If you have ZERO mechanical skills, then you probably have no tools, or space to work in. Paying somebody to replace the engine will be more than what the car is worth.
If it runs, drive it.
When it dies, know that saving it will cause your bank account to die right along with it.
 

JD08

I love your drawers
Apr 22, 2017
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Drive the car you have, save your money, do little projects to learn more about the mechanicals, and then get a fox body.
 
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lemosley1973

Doing something with a heavy tranny now
Feb 18, 2019
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You have an SN-95 Mustang - this is link to the forum for all of those questions: https://www.stangnet.com/mustang-forums/forums/1996-2004-sn95-mustang-general-talk.52/

3.8L are pretty easy to work on - lots of space in the engine bay. There are some perf upgrades but nothing that improves it vastly short of NO2 or Turbo/Superchargers.

A 2V 4.6L can drop in with minimal work changes, but unless you can do the work yourself, better to just buy an SN-95 with a 4.6L already in it.

Have fun and learn some stuff. Knowing how a car works and how to do some level of maintenance and modifications to it are skills that will never let you down.
 

General karthief

wonder how much it would cost to ship you a pair
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This being in the wrong forum is not the noobz fault.
It is the fault of an experienced moderator that uses a kindle with a cracked screen. :rolleyes: Can't imagine who that would be or how I er, he managed to hit the wrong selection. :shrug:
 

kiddiccarus

The first widely accepted Tranny
15 Year Member
Dec 24, 2003
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got a 1997 mustang 3.8L v6 from family member for free with well over 200,000 miles on it is drivable and drives very well, rear-end has been replaced and that's all i know.

MY question.....What would be better to either rebuild the engine or replace the engine??? and what bigger size can plug and play with that model. NOT MECHANICALLY INCLINED AT ALL!!!
Well, I actually have the answer for you...... If you look at my build thread, you can "Technically" throw in a V-6 with more HP in that car and be done with it after a few bolt on's. It is what I did with mine. 95 with a 02 engine. I took out a perfectly good running engine and put in one from a salvage yard to get to where I am now. In time I will purchase a New 04 engine and put that one in (when this goes tits up). Doing what I did requires some mechanical knowledge, a vehicle that is not needed to be driven for work, a willingness for the project to kick you in the nuts, and Lots of learning by failure. In the end, I have all I need now to drop in an engine (01-04 V-6) that is either built out or just bone stock new to keep the body running for as long as it will move down the road.

I see posts all of the time on here of people saying that "You Can't ......... Blah Blah Blah" In reality, You can if you are willing to take the chance at failure or success. If I listened to all of the people telling me that I could not do what I did because of one reason or another. I would still have a stock Mustang in the garage. I do not have a street fighter, a monster track car, or an Outlaw. What I do have is a fun daily driver that gets decent gas mileage and the pride in knowing that the project I have set out to do is going in a successful manner. It is far from completed, but I am all smiles in how it has come so far.

If your engine is running smoothly and its your daily driver. I would be inclined to leave it as it is, change the plugs, wires, coil pack and keep it running for as long as you can. Proper Maintenance is the key and can get you to 300k on the stock block. By that time, you can read some of our threads, interact with some members, and see what you may be up against here as you plan to do what comes next after the engine goes tits up.

Do Not Give Up. Ask the questions. Ignore the obvious posts that, well you will see them. Keep reading the V6 section and seeing what others have done to their cars. Talk to us and learn from what works and does not work. Just because it is a V6 do not ignore the V8 sections because the body is the same and most of the Non engine items will work on the V6. Hell I have a V8 exhaust on mine and a lot of other V8 parts.

Good Luck

P.S. Read up on Dual Port Swaps that have been done on our engine. (I just went and replaced the entire engine because it was easier for me)
 
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lemosley1973

Doing something with a heavy tranny now
Feb 18, 2019
189
59
38
47
Clover, SC
If your engine is running smoothly and its your daily driver. I would be inclined to leave it as it is, change the plugs, wires, coil pack and keep it running for as long as you can. Proper Maintenance is the key and can get you to 300k on the stock block. By that time, you can read some of our threads, interact with some members, and see what you may be up against here as you plan to do what comes next after the engine goes tits up.
What I bolded especially. Minor things like intake, etc. Getting into big mods will stress you out and take the fun out of it. Think I have to thrash on the car over the weekend to it's ready to drive on Monday. Hope it doesn't break down!
 

lemosley1973

Doing something with a heavy tranny now
Feb 18, 2019
189
59
38
47
Clover, SC
I think about anyone can learn to do the things Mike listed that aren't limited by genetics (ie, playing pro football). Maybe they won't be able to do them as well, but they can do them. You have to have desire, a willingness to screw up things and learn from it, ask questions (and a thick skin; some of the replies will be abrasive), and most of all persistence.

The willingness to screw things up and learn from them is one of the reasons you shouldn't be doing that kind of work to the vehicle you rely on to make your money/only transport.

I agree with @91TwighlightGT. The 5.0l cars a probably more desirable, but overall, it's my least favorite - the Cobras being the exception.
 

Neuron

Mustang Master
Nov 6, 2016
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A 97 V-6 Mustang is a totally undesirable car. I would not put money into it.

Unpopular(?) Opinion: The 94-98 Mustang is the next Mustang II.
The '94-'95 GT may become semi collectible, last years of the push rod but all of the improvements of the SN95.
 

91TwighlightGT

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The '94-'95 GT may become semi collectible, last years of the push rod but all of the improvements of the SN95.
It's possible... Realistically the 94-95 Cobra will probably have some value in Excellent condition. The run of the mill GT... hard to say. They just didn't have much performance, and the body style just isn't popular.
 
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Neuron

Mustang Master
Nov 6, 2016
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Cobra for sure. Body style is hard to say, never seen any definitive surveys, I am no use since I like all of the Mustang's various permutations(yes even the Mustang II). I was just thinking the you get the ease(cheap too)of modifications to the engine and all the great SN 95 improvements. Still may not equate to any appreciable rise in demand, just a thought, but I did see it on YouTube so it must be right lol.
 

Potomus Pete

Is there a trick , or does my wife just hold it
Mar 7, 2019
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Sarasota Florida
I was in middle school for the Mustang II , and it was considered somewhat of a joke. They all rusted out in five years , and look now hardly any. I would take one in a second now. Very cool car that is designed in a different way. You could not give me a 94-95 , just my thing. For some reason I just dont like the body style .
 

revhead347

Just rub Vaseline all over
15 Year Member
Jun 14, 2004
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If you have ZERO mechanical skills, then you probably have no tools, or space to work in. Paying somebody to replace the engine will be more than what the car is worth.
If it runs, drive it.
When it dies, know that saving it will cause your bank account to die right along with it.
Dead On. Even if you got a replacement engine from Autozone and had it installed by the lowest bidder, it would still be more than the car is worth. For a V8 car it might be worth it, for a V6 car, it's just money down the toilet. There are no other engines that are going to be plug and play. Putting in another engine takes a lot of money, and a lot of know how.

The car still has value for someone who does want to do an engine swap though. If it has no rust, hasn't be wrecked, interior still in decent condition, etc. Drive it the way it is until it stops working, and then you will still get decent money for it as a roller for someone who does want to do an engine swap.

Kurt
 
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