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Zetec knowledgy...can you help?

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  • Zetec knowledgy...can you help?

    I've read a great deal about fitting a Zetec engine into a Rear Wheel Drive car like a Berlinetta, a Cabrio or a Roadster...and many people have done it using all new, all secondhand or a mixture of parts. However, nowhere have I read a definitive list of parts needed. There is also quite a lot of competition between companies offering after market parts designed to facilitate the task. Most articles begin with the unspoken "it depends on what you want to achieve", whereas what I would like to read is actually "the best product for this purpose is" Which is where you, dear reader, come in. You may assume that the fitment of a replacement engine for a Cabrio has been planned for the Autumn of 2023. The summer months will be enjoyed with the current engine fitment, which is in excellent fettle at present, but is a tad long in the tooth, a tad underpowered and a little unsophisticated maybe...but mostly not "future-proof". AND, the owner wants another project to plan and execute while he still has the ability and the motivation. The chosen engine is a 1.8 litre Zetec. We are looking at achieving reliability at about 140 bhp (as befits a "Gentleman's Sporting Carriage").
    To start with, can you help compile the full list of "necessary" parts? Can you offer advice on any of the various after market which is the best water rail? On which side should the alternator be fitted? Who produces the best exhaust manifold? (In this case it has to join up with an existent single box silencer under the running board). Is it better to use the standard fuel injection or Bike carburettors? What about the clutch...the existing gear box is an MT75. Can the existing cable be adapted?
    Any and all advice gratefully received !

  • #2
    Take a look at the SKCC - Southern Kit Car Club, there are a number of people on there who have done this conversion, they are a friendly bunch and would be happy to share insights.
    Mk2 SWB Marina Roadster with a 2.0L Pinto built in 1986


    • #3
      ZE-TEC knowledgy
      for my cabrio rebuild (didnt come with engine or gearbox).

      St170 engine

      Removal of power steering required an extra pulley guide wheel: https://www.daperformanceengineering...ler-pas-delete see rest of site for more bits.

      New water rail to bring pipework to side of engine. Neil Dunn welding has excellent reputation and price. Also consider retroford one with thermostat accessible for ease of replacement:

      Zetec's run hot, so reduced margine for excess temp and failiure during hard use; i ordered a coolex 4-core unit with 96c fan actuator, so plenty of cooling.

      Spigot bearing for gearbox mounting. Goes on the splined shaft into engine (mazda rx8 5-sp gearbox, not sure if any others need this).

      Ford mondeo 2.0 clutch plate and clutch.

      Butcher Engineering adjustable gearbox mount (rx8 gearbox).

      Custom prop from BAR propshafts, Neath, Wales to standard Sierra diff.

      DanST bike throttle body manifold to match my honda fireblade cbr1000rr throtte bodies.

      New distributor and leads.

      i had the engine mounts already, but DA engineering have plates to allow welding of brackets.

      Some sort of electronic control. You can cut down a loom, but make sure you have the whole loom (there are three separates ones), key, and immobiliser and solinoid. I just vmbought an ME221 with ST170 loom. So wasy.

      Gauges: consider inputs and if they support digital input. My SMITHS 20± year old ones are 1st gen but just support it. Great tech help and ME221 easy to configure output for revs.

      Fuel pump: i went with LP one filling a 2L swirl pot in boot then HP to engine via regulator at 43psi.

      I think that's the main points....
      Last edited by kieran78; 13-04-23, 08:25 AM.


      • #4
        Marlin Cabrio ST, Taunton, Somerset. 73 likes. This is an ad-hoc photo blog of my Marlin Cabrio rebuild. Powered by a Ford Focus ST170 engine; I am calling this a Marlin Cabrio ST.

        my cabrio st170 build log/journal