By on November 20, 2015


Adios Amigo…

Farewell to our Ford Sierra’s reasonably adequate, high compression and emissions free 2-liter Pinto motor because it’s time to visit Lima, Ohio — not Peru — with a bonus question for the truly tech-savvy among the B&B.

There’s a guy named Bo that’s earned quite the reputation in TurboFord-land. I’ve seen his handiwork kicking ass at LeMons races, but was worried after clicking his dead website. Shockingly, I found Bo on eBay; a few emails explaining the stupidity excellence that is TTAC’s chocolate-toned project car, and he was Down With The Brown.

I wanted a roller camshaft swap without resorting to the gutless cams (from a ’90s Ranger) that are easily available in a junkyard. It’s more money, but more bang across the powerband! Bo suggested the torque-savvy, street-friendly “BoPort 2.1” kit: new cam, valves, roller rockers (obviously) and the miscellaneous bits for assembly.

While TTAC’s Ford Sierra won’t be nearly as aggressive as this 2.3 Thunderbird, it has the same cam. The end result will nearly triple the original horsepower figures, with better fuel economy (EFI and an overdrive gearbox) and far better emissions controls. Yes, that means it’s getting a catalytic converter; modern day units flow far more CFM than I will ever need, they are not a restriction.

So let’s take a closer look at the Sierra’s engine.


From the valve springs, retainers and rockers, this is a pretty serious bit of kit.


All machined and ready to go. The block came from a 1985 Thunderbird Turbo with 109,000 easy, stress-free miles mated to an automatic transmission. No surprise that it still had the factory crosshatching in the cylinder bores. The machine work was minimal, a new set of bearings was the biggest expense. The cylinder head was cleaned up a bit and the new valves dropped right in with the roller cam. Done.


The finished product is a thing of beauty. Except we forgot one thing: engine paint!


Bam, son! Chocolate brown engine block for Rio Brown Ford Sierra Ghia!

Along with the color choice, the observant among the B&B may object to overspray. I thought the same, until I talked to the Sierra’s builder. Mr. Brian Pollock, with years of racing experience under his belt, convinced me otherwise: hell, it might even protect things that can rust when there’s no good reason for it!

Now here’s the tough one:


Surprise, surprise! The Merkur parts car from our last update sported these aftermarket fuel injectors.  Apparently it was a common replacement/upgrade for Turbo Fords and Buick Grand Nationals back in the day. A bit of googling found this:

Well then! We learn something new every day. And now I have an interesting alternative to the fuel injectors in my 1985 and 1988 Thunderbird donor motors.

So here’s the question: Assuming all injectors are in good working condition (they all ran fine), do you go with the factory FoMoCo pintle-based injectors or these ToMoCo rotary-discs?

Off to you Best and Brightest. This decision is entirely up to you!

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21 Comments on “TTAC Project Car: Getting Down To Business!...”

  • avatar

    Run what you brung, Son!

    Since your donor car has upgraded parts (by happy accident) I say use ’em.

  • avatar

    I had not heard of those injectors. Mildy amused as “minimizes noise” as a selling point …

  • avatar

    All I’m seeing here are those hubcaps.

    OMG… Hubcaps!

    • 0 avatar

      Lol, I had to look at the pics two more times to spot them.

      The paint on that Tbird is GHASTLY and has no taste. Unless you work for Royal Purple, wtf are you doing!?

  • avatar

    Changing injectors in this motor is about as easy as changing spark plugs. I’d say try both!

  • avatar
    Felis Concolor

    CC, HR and several other performance mags were running “cats that flow better than open headers” articles in the mid-80s; people who yank out their emissions cleansing equipment in the name of “performance” are being aggressively idiotic these days. Most of the cleanup work has already been done within the block itself; the advent of high efficiency cylinder head and piston combinations simply made life much easier for the downstream scrubbers than in the frightful early days of the late 60s through 70s.

    I also recall the technique most of the power builders used when looking for donor engines involved station wagons in suburban settings; lots of short runs and thousands more thermal stress cycles, the better to provide a de-stressed engine block ready for the good stuff.

    Being one who prefers restomods, I say go with new and improved every time.

  • avatar

    I can vaguely remember researching this back in the late 90’s for my DSM. As I remember it;


    Can sustain higher duty cycles
    Superior spray pattern / fuel atomization
    Capable of shorter pulse widths (idle control)


    Less expensive

    Having owned both style of injectors, I personally could not tell the difference.

    Cool project btw!

  • avatar

    I’d say use those interesting disk type injectors, but have someone like WitchHunter do a thorough cleaning and flow test to confirm even and correct function. I hear they have a very fast turnaround and are pretty reasonable cost wise.

  • avatar

    The bigger question on the injectors is what is the power level you are trying to achieve? While in most cases Ford installed injectors with a fair amount of head room to increase HP every injector has a max amount of HP that it can support. With a turbo’ed engine making sure that you don’t run out of injector capacity is all the more important. So if you are planning on making much more HP than stock you may need to purchase some other injectors.

    Tomco is an aftermarket fuel system parts supplier, their main business used to be carb kits, floats ect. They are not a performance parts supplier. That doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t use them if they will support the level of HP that you are trying to make. Just don’t expect them to be a magic part that is going to increase HP. If you do use them you really want to use 4 of them and not mix and match. While they are designed to flow the same at max injector pulse width the response over the entire range is likely to be slightly different at different points.

    • 0 avatar

      I expect to make around 250hp at the wheels. From what I am googling up, the 1988 Tbird injectors (35lb-hr) or these Tomoco’s (32lb-hr) will be fine.

      Will probably try the Tomoco injectors just because I have them and the design sounds appealing to me.

      • 0 avatar

        What ECU and/or MAF will be running all of this? The computer needs to “know” that size the injectors are to fuel properly. The old trick was to change the MAF body to change the amount of air that is sensed to fool the computer into the right pulse width for the size of injectors being used.

        Yes the Ford computer has the ability to learn the fueling to a certain extent but the earlier models have a limit to how far they can correct things.

        The other problem with fooling the computer with the MAF is that it uses the indicated air flow to calculate the Volumetric Efficiency IE the load on the engine. That inferred load is then used to look up the appropriate timing.

        The ultimate solution of course is MegaSquirt.

  • avatar

    Since we’re discussing nearly 30 year old parts (and injectors may last forever..). I would go with the disc units only because as I understand their design, the slight rotation of them leads to a cleaner life overall. I’m not sure how anybody could hear an injector (according to their press release) but it’s about as noisy as a nasal spray bottle.

    Also, it’s engine enamel, the long-term heat exposure will help protect your engine longer rather than paint which would flake off as heat and vibration increases. So yes, people may dislike the appearance of overspray but enameling an old engine can save it in decades to come. It’s mainly why before better metallurgy took hold almost all engines were coated in enamel.

  • avatar

    I guess my exhortations from yesterday went for naught? Well, if you’re jumping off a cliff, you may as well use the best parachute. By the way, the injector disc makes sense to me, so it’s probably suspect. I don’t know about the Sierra, but the Turbo Coupe and the 225hp Mustang jump-started the performance niche after the so-called Malaise years of darkness. The 190 horse TurboCoupe seemed raucous at the time, and they sold like hotcakes to stockbrokers and their ilk.

  • avatar

    This is both brilliant and sick at the same time.

  • avatar

    You had the opportunity to do this right.

  • avatar

    Why would anybody with any brain,paint the gasket surfaces,oil filter mount and other engine internals.

  • avatar
    Big Al From 'Murica

    I wonder if the Pinto forum on Facebook would have any interest in the old 2.0.

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