Michael Johnson
Associate Editor, 5.0 Mustangs & Super Fords
November 7, 2013


Long on Power

Ford Racing Performance Parts' [(800) 367-3788; www.fordracingparts.com] line of pushrod short-blocks (from $4,899) are anything but short on power. You can choose from a 347 (M-6009-347), a 363 (M-6009-363), or a 427 (M-6009-427F) to power your Mustang. Each block is precision-machined, and each rotating assembly is balanced to ensure smooth high-speed power. The 347 and 363 feature an 8.2-inch deck height, while the 427 boasts a 9.5-inch deck height. These short-blocks serve as the foundation for FRPP's crate engines of the same displacement designations. The short-blocks feature Scat cranks, Scat connecting rods, and Mahle pistons. Of course, they rely on FRPP's Boss block as the cornerstone for durable power.


Hump Kit

You won't have to wait for a Wednesday to install Latemodel Restoration's [(866) 507-3786; www.latemodelrestoration.com] tunnel hump kit for Fox Mustangs. This kit is ideal for those performing a T5 swap, or perhaps completing a restoration. It comes with everything needed to finish the job the right way.


Alloy Clip

If you're going to launch your Mustang at the dragstrip, you definitely need to look into swapping your factory axles for these Strange Engineering [(847) 663-1701; www.strangeengineering.net] C-clip units. These are stronger-than-stock 31-spline examples, available for '94-'13 Mustangs. The axles are part of Strange's Alloy Axle lineup and are forged from alloy steel. Thanks to a deeper heat treatment that increases torsional strength, Strange reports the axles can reliably handle the power and torque of your Mustang. However, these affordable axles do not require any modification to the factory 8.8 housing. They will, of course, need a 31-spline differential installed with them in '94-'04 Mustang applications. These axles will also work with factory bearings, seals, and studs.


On-Car Adjustment

There are so many plays-on-words we could come up with for Stiffler's [(317) 837-2444; www.buystifflers.com] new adjustable Panhard rod ($145), but this is a family show so we'll keep it clean. This adjustable Panhard rod provides easy, on-car adjustability to center and keep the rearend in place under the most demanding driving conditions. The race-inspired tube offers improved stiffness and weight savings, while the CNC-machined, 3⁄4-inch threaded adjuster provides additional strength. Greasable fluted polyurethane bushings minimize side-to-side movement and ensure quiet operation. Stiffler's adjustable Panhard rod is powdercoated for long-lasting good looks.


Hey Sport

Judging by looking at a some of the Mustangs out there, it looks like a few of you could benefit from a call to TMI Products [(951) 272-1996; www.tmiproducts.com] for a pair of its Sport R seats. These seats install using your factory seat frames and are available for '87-'04 Mustangs. Increased side bolsters and lumbar support will hold you in your seat better during spirited driving, while Unisuede inserts highlight the black vinyl or leather upholstery. Additionally, a contrast stitch adorns the perimeter of the Sport seat, which is available in red, white, blue, or black. The Sport R houses the stock headrest inside the Sport R foam, keeping your Mustang's safety features intact.


KJ-Approved

Dickies [(800) DICKIES; www.dickies.com], the unofficial clothing line for your favorite Tech Editor KJ Jones, has this new Unlined Eisenhower jacket, which would be right at home at the track during cooler and wetter times of the year. The jacket is water-resistant and water-repellent to keep you dry—water simply beads up on the surface and rolls off, just like it should on your Mustang. The jacket also features adjustable tabs at the waistband for a secure fit, a pencil pocket on the left sleeve, and a heavy-duty brass zipper-front closure. The jacket is durable through multiple washes, and it's only $39.99.


Smarter and faster

Fool those around you into thinking you're smarter and faster by using KRC Racing's Cyclone power socket wrench kit from Summit Racing [(800) 230-3030; www.summitracing.com]. The air-powered Cyclone wrench has a head and socket assembly that is 30-percent smaller than conventional systems. Plus, the wrench features 85 lb-ft of bolt-busting torque and a through-hole design to permit bolts and studs to pass right through. The Cyclone includes adapters so you can use your existing 3⁄8-inch and 1⁄2-inch sockets. It also offers a double-pawl, positive-lock system to eliminate slippage. The 29-piece kit includes corrosion-resistant metric and SAE impact sockets with laser-etched sizes; two 3-inch extensions; 3⁄8-inch and 1⁄2-inch conventional socket adapters; a pneumatic wrench; and a sturdy storage case.



Never Lift

We all dream of no-lift shifting. We perfect it on the street so we can be fast at the track. MTI Racing's [(770) 919-7774; www.mtiracing.com] new six-speed sequential transmission system for Tremec T-56 and T-6060 six-speed transmissions can make even a magazine editor look like a pro. Using the original case, MTI converts the internals and the H-pattern shift mechanism to full-sequential operation. Everything outside of the transmission stays the same, but this conversion's two key advancements are its strength, and most of all, its shifting speeds. When accompanied by an electronic paddle-shift mechanism, shifts can be accomplished in 10 to 20 milliseconds. Just like it's up-shifting capabilities, this conversion makes down-shifting just as convenient, promoting greater vehicle stability under braking and corner entry.


I Got Digital

If you've ever wanted to do something different with your Fox Mustang's dash, check out Dakota Digital's [(800) 852-3228; www.dakotadigital.com] VHX series of instrumentation. Fitting within the confines of either an '79-'86 or '87-'93 Mustang's dash, these clusters feature machined housings, lighted needles, backlit faces, and a full-character message center for all displays. The VHX series instruments utilize solid-state sensors and precision stepper motors for the best possible accuracy, and are coupled with a limited-lifetime warranty for complete support, both now and in the future. The VHX series can use a stock or aftermarket wiring harness. The systems are available with a blue or red display color, and either a satin or carbon fiber-style face. (Editor Turner?)


Stay Sharp

Keep your Mustang's handling sharp with Bilstein's [www.bilsteinus.com] new B12 suspension kits for '87-'13 Mustangs. Bilstein teamed up with Eibach to put together these kits aimed at improving your Mustang's handling. The B12 Pro-Kit is designed to provide accurate response, excellent performance, and predictable control. The B12 kit lowers the car approximately 40mm for an improved stance. Bilstein's B12 Sportline kit could lower your Mustang up to 50mm for a much more aggressive profile and handling capabilities. Bilstein bills the Sportline as the ultimate package of comfort and ride performance.


USA K

QA1 [(800) 721-7761; www.qa1.net] is proud to now manufacture its Mustang K-member ($299.95) in-house. These K-members are manufactured in QA1's state-of-the-art fabrication facility along with QA1's entire line of suspension components. QA1's K-member is available for '79-'04 Mustangs in both 5.0-liter pushrod and 4.6 offerings. They're designed as a strictly bolt-in installation, and are made from mild steel to reduce weight over the front end of your Mustang. You can remove up to 28 pounds from the front end with a QA1 K-member, and gain increased header and oil pan clearance. QA1's K-member is also designed to improve front suspension geometry, as well.


Break-In The Seal

If there was ever a more natural product progression, it's Total Seal's [(800) 874-2753; www.totalseal.com] Performance Break-In Oil and Assembly Lube. Formulated for Total Seal by Driven Racing Oil, the break-in oil is designed to provide the highest levels of zinc and phosphorus for optimum ring seating during that critical initial break-in period. This break-in oil is compatible with methanol and high-octane race fuels. Total Seal's Assembly Lube is designed to provide a tenacious, yet fluid film to protect reciprocating and rotating components during assembly and initial break-in, and it can be added to regular oil to increase film thickness. The assembly lube does not harden or cause parts to become sticky.


Boss Arms

These days, if there is anything with the word Boss in it, Mustang people want it. Steeda Autosports' [(954) 960-0774; www.steeda.com] new SLA Boss Comp front lower control arms ($359.96) feature upgraded high-durometer urethane bushings and longer ball joints. The upgraded bushings are said to greatly reduce deflection, while the longer ball joints are used for increased strength and improved steering geometry. Reduced bushing deflection is said to increase steering response and maintain proper alignment geometry during hard cornering. The high-grade ball joints are designed to improve front geometry for increased cornering grip, reduced understeer, and reduced body roll.