Headers with stock exhaust

Booboo

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Can I install a set of BBK shorty headers on a 1997 GT while keeping the rest of the exhaust stock?
 

96blak54

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The claim is shorty headers offer no gains, but i beg to differ. I had a modular crownvic and installed the ford racing shortys on. It uncorked alot more rpm.
 
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Booboo

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I am going to put them on with the intent to upgrade the rest later.

Is there any tips to putting them on that will keep them from leaking. How does useing the stock bolts with some anti-seize. Gasket recomendation?
 

ttocs

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well header bolts are notorious for working loose from all the heat so you can consider some locking style bolts if you don't mind the hassle of getting them on/off. Someone else will know the gasket brand to go to better than me.
 

RAU03MACH

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that crush gasket is fun to put in when the bolts are not mounted to the header flange
and trying to lighn it up and put a nut on the bolt

i tac welded the bolts to the headers so the bolt stays in place
 

RAU03MACH

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What are soft gaskets?
the gasket material is softer so when tightened down it creates a better seal thicker almost like cardboard i double them up, not all headers are perfect on the flange .

then there is the metal type stay away from those
 

RAU03MACH

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there might be a metal type that is soft and a crushable seal, those could be the ones that black is talking about
there are a few
 

ttocs

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which brings up a good point, if you are getting them used or even new, be sure to put a good straight edge up to the flange to check that it is nice and flat prior to install just to be sure and you might save yourself some trouble later.
 

apsmith49921

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Why shorty headers just curious? I won't say shorty headers don't offer gains because that's not true. I would argue that long tubes are more beneficial for the same amount of work. The choice is yours though. If you're set on shorty headers JBA seems to have the reputation for making the most power.

Also when it comes to gaskets I like the remflex gaskets or the stock ones. It's a pretty decent undertaking to do headers in these car.

Another thing I personally prefer is reusing studs if possible and I mean replacing the studs with new ones. You can find em at the parts store. Or if you're fancy stage 8 locking header bolts are also great.
 

ttocs

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shorty's and long tubes = the same amount of work? I thought the main reason to go with shorty's is to avoid the fun of installing the longtubes?
 

apsmith49921

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shorty's and long tubes = the same amount of work? I thought the main reason to go with shorty's is to avoid the fun of installing the longtubes?
On a 4.6 car they're the same. You've got to pull the k member out either way. On the 302 you can just do everything from the top so shorty headers make good sense
 

RAU03MACH

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When you get into your late 50s
And your cussing your long tubes out

Let me know how that works
I have no patience for them
 

apsmith49921

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I didn't really have any issues with the headers. It was the midpipe that was my issue. No one makes a midpipe for 96-98 4v cars so I had to make my own. That was by far the worst part
 

ttocs

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On a 4.6 car they're the same. You've got to pull the k member out either way. On the 302 you can just do everything from the top so shorty headers make good sense
ah ok I guess that is the trade off for the injectors being so easy to swap out. We figured out a buddy with a 4.6 had a bad injector and I started to curse in my head a little thinking we were going to have to take the intake off like on my 5.0 to get to it when I realized how easy it was to access as is.
 

Snorky

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ah ok I guess that is the trade off for the injectors being so easy to swap out. We figured out a buddy with a 4.6 had a bad injector and I started to curse in my head a little thinking we were going to have to take the intake off like on my 5.0 to get to it when I realized how easy it was to access as is.
Yeah I find 4.6 cars super easy to work on. Only downside is to make it super easy y
for serious work is you need to Yank the engine. That isn't too hard though, I would rather take the extra 6 hours of engine pull and install and do the heads/engine timing comfortably on a chair than leaning over an engine bay and doing it.

302s pushrods are a strange thing to me.
 

weendoggy

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When I had my '02 4.6 in, I put BBK shorty headers on in the car. Didn't remove the K member either (I had a MM one). All the "bolts" are PITA but not difficult when you have a rack or can just lay on the ground doing it. There was one stubborn SOB that litterally took me both top/bottom to turn the bolt 1/4 turn at a time. F/R second one back on top. Just a royal PITA x 10, but I did it. I never had any come loose either in three years. Still on the engine on the stand right now. Oh, here's a tip, put the motor mount on first on driver side before putting the header in. Don't ask.
 

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