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swapping a 1966 428/C6 combo into 1959 Bird

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  • swapping a 1966 428/C6 combo into 1959 Bird

    Hi Guys...long time since I have posted...I scored a 1966 T/Bird with a zero mile Rebuilt 428 4V and rebuilt C6. I am pulling the d/train from the 66 and putting it into Bev's 56,000 mile 1959 T/Bird. I am sooo tired of the unfixable oil/trans leaks on the 352/COM combo. I always have trouble getting the search feature to give me info..So I am pretty sure from the info in the threads I can find...., that it will be a straight fwd engine swap. I can't find a thread that is really in depth for the trans swap, looks like trans linkage and poss drive shaft length, are a couple of areas for fabrication skills.. Also shifter indicator alignment.etc. I will also swap in the Alternator....The 59 is an A/C car and needs work in that area as well....it will be a lot easier to repair A/C with engine out. It appears the eng mounts will bolt in ??? and exhaust mnflds will work...I will get both engs pulled in the next week and will look fwd to finding tech help from this VERY knowledgeable group of T/Bird fans. I have already done the Disc brake conversion on the 59...That was a must do upgrade. Funny thing on the 66 Bird ... full load with wind up windows....The 66 was a Z car {390} but was upgraded to the 428/C6 combo...Has sat since 2011 and never fired up...Now the poor guy has dementia and is gone to a home...CHEERS TERRY

  • #2
    Terry, the 428 should go in pretty easy. The C6 swap I did wasn't terrible, but I'm still not happy with the trans linkage I came up with. I used the stock trans cross member on my C6 swap with a different trans mount. I had to modify the holes on the cross member and that was about it.

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    • #3
      The engine itself is a pretty straight swap. The exhaust manifolds are different so you will have to reuse the 352 manifolds. As for the C6 you will have some mods to do for the transmission mount and the linkage. Hopefully someone who has done it can give you more detail. I believe the drive shaft can be reused as is.

      John
      John Pizzi - Squarebirds Administrator

      Thunderbird Registry #36223
      jopizz@squarebirds.org 856-779-9695

      https://www.squarebirds.org/picture_gallery/TechnicalResourceLibrary/trl.htm

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      • #4
        HI guys , THANK YOU for the input..Pulled 428 today, I ran it before pulling from 66 bird...good o/press broke in cam , pulled pan and rocker cover just to be sure....looks good. I tried to post pix...no go?? CHEERS TERRY

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        • #5
          Hi Terry, your Paid Membership expired back on October 19, 2018. That is why you cannot post pix directly on our server. If you have not changed your email address recently, you should have received a system generated email a few days before Oct. 19th last year, telling you that your Paid Membership was about to expire. You have three options. 1. Renew your Paid Membership for another year. 2. Upload your pix to a free photo hosting website like Photobucket, and then post the link to your pix in your posts. 3. Send them to me, jopizz, or Dave ~ simplyconnected and we can post them for you... I see you are still online. You can send them to me and I can post them for you, if you wish... Let me know. I am headed for bed shortly. If you wish to renew your Paid Membership, you can still do so through PayPal. Go to the green border under the Tbird logo and click on the Donate To Site link and it will take you to PayPal...

          Ray Clark - Squarebirds Administrator
          The Terminator.....
          Contact me via Private Message for my email address, or Call (Cell) 210-875-1411

          https://www.squarebirds.org/picture_gallery/TechnicalResourceLibrary/trl.htm

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          • #6
            Hi Yellow Rose...Sorry for long delay in reply....Been working full time on the 428 swap into the 59. up and running now..

            The good stuff ...WHAT A GREAT SWAP....Beauty upgrade on torque, and that C6, what a sweet upgrade from the COM.
            Here is the short story....or maybe not...No eng swap is easy, but this one was very straight fwd.
            Engine and trans from 1966 Bird....Rebuilt 428 by local Shop that is an FE expert shop..and rebuilt C6...sat in the 66 since 2011, never fired up both the block and head casting support 1966-70 428 castings
            Towed car home and Fired er up....Orig Ford carb {4v}, it had been rebuilt, but ran horrible, installed Edelbrock 1411.. 750 cfm, electric choke.. good right out of the box 16 inches Vac
            I had the overhaul billing, but no cam specs, sounds non stock, and lower vac may support that.
            60 psi cold oil press and 35 hot idle...no leaks....good news on an FE!!
            trans filled and ran to check levels and leaks...good
            SO, first pulled the 352, I left trans in as I worked on the floor, no prob, then pulled trans. I had to drop drag link to get fwd clearance to pull trans....no prob...,
            Pulled 428 and C6 same way. easy job on the 66
            Pulled 428 pan and checked Mains,,,,good and end play .007" good.. look at cam from bottom looks good, pulled plugs to rotate eng, I could see new pistons, which was supported by the o haul paperwork. every thing new...OH YEAH!!
            Pulled rocker cover all gear looks good. heads were rebuilt with new valves and hardened inserts..
            Re use 428 w/pump {shorter shaft} and 428 pulleys. 352 a/c fan and 428 spacer...This engine was balanced during o haul , and I didn't want to fool with any poss unbalanced c/shaft pulley or pullies etc.
            Re use 59 gen etc...will poss upgrade to alt later, but all is working good..
            Every thing bolted on as if it was the 352...good news.
            the 428 w/pump had min casting clearance on the inlet leg between leg and generator belt, but no contact after 100 miles.. the 352 pump had a casting indent for more clearance. plus longer shaft.
            Trans and C/Member. 1966 T/Bird .C6 had the same dimensions as the COM
            It Turned out to be an easy swap..
            re used 1959 c/member...the main body support had an extra hole rearward of the COM mount position {std trans position?} but the floor was not drilled...the C6 mnt position fit exactly this extra hole location ...so I drilled thru the floor and moved the Factory double mount studs rearward one hole set...PERFECT FIT FOR THE cross member and the C6 mount..
            This also meant, near stock location of trans and 4 degrees down at trans tailshaft...same as I measured on the 59...
            I modified 59 trans mnt slightly be trimming rubber, and using 66 trans mnt brkt...MUCH narrower then the 59...fit good and same set up now as the 66.
            The 66 drive shaft was SAME LENGTH as the 59.... I had to use a conversion U joint on the 59 shaft to install C6 yoke and it bolted right in.. good spline depth, and seal clearance in trans
            So if you wanted to Put a C6 Behind the 352 in a squarebird, I think it looks like an easy swap..
            Same shifter pattern as the COM, and used the 66 shifter linkage....PERFECT...full range L to P and free pin at each detente.
            I used a Lokar cable Kickdown and throttle Kit and eliminated that ford kickdown Rod...works great..
            Even the windshield wipers work with the std 428 fuel pump {no Vac assist on pump}
            NO Over heat with stock 59 Rad. weather is still cool here yet ...I hate that fan noise, so will go to electric set up... The E brake cable casing mount bracket on the c/member, was now 2 inches farther back, so I dissembled the casing from the upper mount, pulled the casing down, attched to the c/member , reworked and repositioned the fwd casing brkt ,downward, and it works great. I had to re thread the E brake adjuster rod, about 1 1/2 inches, for the same reason {cross member 2 inches farther back}
            428 exh mnflds will fit, but have the tapered do- nuts, so used the 352 mnflds [ flat gskts] to match the exhaust system.
            The manifold ports and dimentions are almost exactley the same, which i found hard to believe..
            what a treat to park without the puddle under neath, and VERY responsive performance!
            I probably missed tons of good info, but a very good upgrade on the ol Bird
            CHEERS TERRY
            Last edited by BEVS BIRD; June 28th, 2019, 02:16 AM.

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            • #7
              Terry, your Paid Membership has been renewed and I see your Member icon is showing on your user id again. Try uploading your pix again, and see if they take this time. I see them as 4 X'ed out entries here. Thanks for the great write up on the transfer of the 428/C6 from a '66 Tbird into your 1959 Squarebird! It will be a big help to those who come along later who want to do the same thing...

              Ray Clark - Squarebirds Administrator
              The Terminator.....
              Contact me via Private Message for my email address, or Call (Cell) 210-875-1411

              https://www.squarebirds.org/picture_gallery/TechnicalResourceLibrary/trl.htm

              Comment


              • #8
                Hi Yellow Rose....Received a nice note from Ray Clark, re the use of the swap info....Very pleased if this can help another Car nut. The 59 is now a real pleasure to take to the local hangouts, and do the usual car guy "Relaxing" car hobby BS sessions...Time will tell if this engine will survive the start up after sitting so long...my real concern was the cam break in, as the eng would not run properly on initial start up.....The 66 donor car had so many vac leaks, with that crazy 66 ford T/Bird vac accessory stuff, it took an hr of running to eliminate them all. it was run with the Hot Rod oil { high zinc content} to ensure the flat tappet cam and hydr lifters had the best chance of survival.

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                • #9
                  Thanks to the efforts of Terry and his step-by-step account of this transfer of a 1966 428/C6 setup into a '59 Squarebird, we now have this recorded for posterity in the Technical Resource Library! (TRL) in the Engine section. If your use the Ctrl F (F=Find) feature and key in Squarebird-1959-352-To-Flairbird, it should take you right to that information. Terry says that should you have any questions regarding this, feel free to email or send him a Private Message.

                  Ray Clark - Squarebirds Administrator
                  The Terminator.....
                  Contact me via Private Message for my email address, or Call (Cell) 210-875-1411

                  https://www.squarebirds.org/picture_gallery/TechnicalResourceLibrary/trl.htm

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    HI GUYS To eliminate that awful fan roar, I decided to go with a clutch fan hub and 7 bladed fan...The original generator would be marginal at best to handle the extra load, of an electric fan . I will upgrade to an Alt. at a later date. Th clutch fan was IN STOCK at the local parts place, wow.. I ordered a 1966 Thunderbird 428 clutch fan hub. [HAYDEN 2710 FAN CLUTCH} and under $50..I sourced the 7 bladed fan at the wrecking yard for $10 bucks PLUS TAX PLEASE! the guy said. I have no idea what it came off....it was the first one I picked up and measured 18 Inches in dia, and had the big center opening for the fan clutch...
                    I forgot to mention in the swap info that the 428 block had 2 sets of motor mount holes, I used the REAR SET. I had good rad/Fan clearance so the whole set up fit in nicely...I have good clearance on the expansion tank, and 1/2 in between fan clutch and rad centre support strut. Beauty now on the highway, no roaring fan...fan picks up the idle speed, so no overheatingat this point...I have used this set up on previous hot rods with good success. So I don't expect any trouble..PLEASE NOTE THE STOCK 428 water pump has a shorter shaft, so the clutch fan set up fit...it wont fit with the stock 352 water pump {longer shaft} .CHEERS TERRY
                    Last edited by BEVS BIRD; August 27th, 2019, 12:46 AM.

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                    • #11
                      Terry, et all, I have added your comments to the Tech Tip on this in the TRL, and added a source for the Hayden 2710 Fan Clutch. Summit Racing has it for $31, for the 428ci 1966 Tbird, as do other auto parts stores. Terry when I want to post pix, I do it using the CAMERA icon that you should be seeing. That allows me to upload them into a slide show type of arrangement, one after another, where you can click on the first pic, and then using the Right Arrow, go to the next one, and the next one, etc..

                      Ray Clark - Squarebirds Administrator
                      The Terminator.....
                      Contact me via Private Message for my email address, or Call (Cell) 210-875-1411

                      https://www.squarebirds.org/picture_gallery/TechnicalResourceLibrary/trl.htm

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                      • #12
                        Thnx Yellow Rose...I will follow the tip for Pix posting..See you down the road! CHEERS TERRY

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                        • #13
                          I LIKE IT !!!!! I LIKE IT ALLOT !!!!!!!

                          John Byers
                          1960 Convertible (Orig owner)
                          sigpic

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                          • #14
                            How's the 428 ?

                            I gotta ask. What was wrong with the 66 ?
                            John Byers
                            1960 Convertible (Orig owner)
                            sigpic

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                            • #15
                              Hi Guys... The 66 was a redone car, body,paint and all mechanical.but needed interior done ..in beautiful shape...I Really wanted to upgrade the 59 Bird as the car had 58K miles, and had been bought new in San Diego....Bev's cousin bought one and her sister bought the identical car as well.Ordered New from Dealer In La Jolla.. pretty good family story. Bev could have had both cars but could only take care of one...The 352/COM was totally lacking in "spirit"..So The 66 went to Bev's son who is going to re-power it and finish the interior. tHE 428 is a perfect updrade for the 59...The C6 is sweet. The 59 rolls when you hit the throttle....CHEERS TERRY

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