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Discussion Starter #1
I'm a new member here and have been doing a lot of research about swapping the motor out of my 2001 Taurus SES w/ 3.0 Vulcan motor. This may seem elementary to the vets on here but I wanted to post my findings for the novice's like me that may find themselves in the same situation.

The car has 310,000 miles and the dealership tells me it burned a valve. Quote is $2,200 to fix and they can about guarantee they will find more. That's more than the cars worth so that's not going to happen. What's the options:
1. part it out on craigslist myself.
2. take it to the junk yard and get about $400 and call it a day.
3. swap motors and keep driving it.

Being that the car is clean inside and out given the year and miles and that we've put most of those miles on it, and, recently we've put new front tires, rear struts, a heater core in it etc, (and I'm a stubborn SOB), I want to keep driving it! LOL 500,000 is on my mind for some reason....

What I've learned.
1. There are several different engine's: 3.0 Vulcan (gasoline only), 3.0 Vulcan (Flex Fuel), DOHC 3.0 engine. etc.
2. If your replacing the Vulcan ENGINE ONLY (keeping your computer, all sensors and fuel injectors then ANY YEAR Vulcan engine will work. 2004 and newer need the newer intake put on the older engine.
3. My brother in law, in the car / parts business, I think gave me the best advise, "KISS" (Keep it simple stupid). He directed me to www.car-part.com. You put in the year, make and model. It then makes you look at the 8th digit in your VIN code. For me that is a "U", that means I have a gasoline Vulcan and not the flex fuel Vulcan engine. You put the state you live in and I recommend you put in your zip code. You get a list of matching engines from different places with mileage. For me a place popped up with an engine from another 2001 Taurus SES (U code) with 95,000 miles on it with an A grade for $500.00 (30 day guarantee). My brother in law stated they do business there all the time and felt they were reputable. So I've jumped into it and bought the engine.

I'm pretty excited for the challenge of swapping the engines. I worked on cars as a young man but have gotten away from it. I'm no mechanic, but an mechanically inclined. I'll keep you posted. I welcome any constructive comments if you think I've gone wrong or words of wisdom for doing the swap. Thanks!
 

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I think you're well on your way.

Are you planning on swapping the transmission at the same time? If the tranny has 310K miles on it as well, it's probably not too far from being gone as well.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Wasn't going to swap the tranny. Had it serviced a little while ago. It wasn't spitting out any codes and no metal shavings. Seems to be running good. I'm curious how far it will go before it pukes out. It's a challenge I guess, gonna run it till it dies of natural causes! LOL It's a third vehicle now, so if it goes down it's not a major malfunction.
 

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I like your spirit.
 

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^-1

I'm of the opposite opinion. I think swapping the engine is indeed the best idea. Sure, you could repair the burnt valve for $100-200. You could put on a complete remanufactured cylinder head for a few hundred dollars. But you're putting these parts on a 300k mile engine. I have seen plenty of Vulcans make it over 400k, but you're already pushing the envelope with the mileage you're at now. Why put the time and money into fixing a 300k mile engine? I see the uncertainty of installing a used engine being much less than the uncertainty of replacing one valve or a head on a 300k engine.
 

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^-1

I'm of the opposite opinion. I think swapping the engine is indeed the best idea. Sure, you could repair the burnt valve for $100-200. You could put on a complete remanufactured cylinder head for a few hundred dollars. But you're putting these parts on a 300k mile engine. I have seen plenty of Vulcans make it over 400k, but you're already pushing the envelope with the mileage you're at now. Why put the time and money into fixing a 300k mile engine? I see the uncertainty of installing a used engine being much less than the uncertainty of replacing one valve or a head on a 300k engine.
Local pick a part gets $225 for used engine, lots to choose from, mileage posted. Give the old one back and get a core back, then less than $200.

If I did that, I would pull the pan, check the bearings, clean the oil screen, and check the timing chain. Replace the timing cover gasket while it is on the hook. Hook a battery up and crank it over to check compression.

Just my take.

One more thing: I would do the old piston engine airplane thing. Turn it over and feel the compression on each cylinder for equal resistance. I would use a paint marker and mark the pulley about in thirds, use a ratchet and turn it over feeling each cylinder pass compression. Pull the plugs and look for them being all the same condition. Pull the oil drain plug, stick a crew driver in and check for sludge.

-chart-
 

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^-1

I'm of the opposite opinion. I think swapping the engine is indeed the best idea. Sure, you could repair the burnt valve for $100-200. You could put on a complete remanufactured cylinder head for a few hundred dollars. But you're putting these parts on a 300k mile engine. I have seen plenty of Vulcans make it over 400k, but you're already pushing the envelope with the mileage you're at now. Why put the time and money into fixing a 300k mile engine? I see the uncertainty of installing a used engine being much less than the uncertainty of replacing one valve or a head on a 300k engine.
Local pick a part gets $225 for used engine, lots to choose from, mileage posted. Give the old one back and get a core back, then less than $200.

If I did that, I would pull the pan, check the bearings, clean the oil screen, and check the timing chain. Replace the timing cover gasket while it is on the hook. Hook a battery up and crank it over to check compression.

Just my take.

-chart-
This seems most logical to me.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Well, one step closer. Got the replacement engine home tonight. The first picture is of the engine tag on the original engine in the car. The second one (engine # 575,251) is the tag on the replacement engine w/ 95,000 on it. The third is an overall view of the replacement engine (3.0 Vulcan / U code / gas). The only thing I see different on the tags besides the engine number, is in the bottom right hand corner. The replacement engine has a DK with a 3 under it. My original has a DK with a 2 under it. I don't know what that means.
 

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If it were me. I would consider changing the timing cover gasket and waterpump. Seeing the picture with all the accessories off, the job would be pretty easy.
 

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If it were me. I would consider changing the timing cover gasket and waterpump. Seeing the picture with all the accessories off, the job would be pretty easy.
^+1

Might as well knock out common failure items while they're easy to get to. You could replace the water pump, timing cover gasket, oil pan gasket, intake manifold gaskets and valve cover gaskets in an hour or two. You can also get all those parts from Rock Auto for under $75 shipped.
 

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Also clean up the timing marks on the balancer.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
I think I'm going to do all that. What's the thoughts on where to get replacement parts like the water pump, plug wires, plugs? Saw the link for all the seals for $75.00 and will do that. What's the recommendations on sealant for the gaskets? I guess I'm a little afraid to buy some crappy china made replacement parts that will fail in a short time frame, but the dealership for genuine parts can be expensive. Is Autozone OK or where should I get them?
I had a suggestion that the A/C could be undone and moved to the side to avoid having to recharge it??? Thoughts??? I haven't looked at it that close yet.

If any of you are really bored tonight, how about a step by step guide to pulling the engine. I degreased the new one today and have it setting next to my Taurus. Picking the Cherry Picker up tomorrow and may pull the engine Wed. the 28th.

Thanks again for all the suggestions.
 

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Discussion Starter #16
Just reread Mad Scientist's post. understand I can get the water pump from Rock auto as well as seals. I assume I can find them online w/ a google search. Thanks!
 

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If you can wait a few days I'd definitely order the parts from Rock Auto. www.rockauto.com It's much cheaper than Auto Zone even with shipping. The quality of the parts from Auto Zone is usually junk anyway. I'll post some pictures later of what a "Vaulecraft" Vulcan water pump looks like after 12k miles.

I'd just order the parts you need. No need for a complete gasket kit here and you're not going to save any money. Rock Auto is actually how I figured the price I quoted. Just don't cheap out on the water pump. At bare minimum, if ordering from Rock Auto, get the Bosch pump. The Motorcraft is the best bet in the end, but at about $70, it cost almost 3 times as much. If it's in your budget, it's worth it in the long haul though.

As for the A/C, you can unbolt the compressor and secure it out of the way with twine or bailing wire. Just make sure there's no stress on the hoses.
 

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Discussion Starter #19
Madscientist, (and others) What's your take on pulling the engine only? I've read multiple discussions on taking everything out the bottom vs. the top. I've watched u-tube video's etc. I saw one guy that liked taking it out the top and did so with a DOHC motor. That looked pretty tight to me, and he had to take apart about half the motor. I took the hood off my Vulcan 3.0 OHV and got looking at it close. It looks to me like the motor only could come out the top easier than dropping it all out the bottom and putting it back. Also ordered all my stuff from Rock Auto and went with the Motorcraft waterpump. That was a steal at $68.89. The dealership charged me about $140 for it when I had one put in at 240,000 miles.
 

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Someone may have to comment on the amount the engine can shift to get if off the transmission input shaft. Maybe the water pump needs to be removed
 
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