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Thread: Cfi performance

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    Member 91merc's Avatar
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    Default Cfi performance

    Any simple, budget friendly ways I can give my 85 cfi car just a little more pep? Right now all I have done to it is an edelbrock chome air cleaner, smog/egr delete and a 12" glasspack in place of the factory muffler

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    Carthago delenda est Lutrova's Avatar
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    Any chrome in the engine bay is an easy 10 hp.

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    Still Wrenchin'! friskyfrankie's Avatar
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    Not sure there are a lot of economical upgrades you can do as this is a "dog" performance vehicle. Any real upgrades would not be cheap, wouldn't be worth the effort and would require several unnatural acts. Different exhaust manifolds and exhaust items would help (somewhat) but if you are not doing all the work yourself, is it worth it?
    What I Own: 1993 Mercury Grand Marquis GS
    What I Help Maintain: 1996 CV / 1988 CV / 1988 Tempo

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    Quote Originally Posted by friskyfrankie View Post
    Not sure there are a lot of economical upgrades you can do as this is a "dog" performance vehicle. Any real upgrades would not be cheap, wouldn't be worth the effort and would require several unnatural acts. Different exhaust manifolds and exhaust items would help (somewhat) but if you are not doing all the work yourself, is it worth it?
    Not really look for a "performance vehicle " just a little more passing power lol. I'd be doing any work myself as me and my dad run a mobile mechanic business

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    Lost and driftin' Arquemann's Avatar
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    Dual exhaust is probably your best bet, headers might be pushing it, considering CFI doesn't play nice with mods, or so I've heard. My CFI didn't play nice even stock, and then there's @sluggish91 with a ton of mods on the stock CFI.
    I did away with CFI and now I'm running a 4bbl Holley, still running the stock single exhaust. Mid to top end definitely got more lively.
    1985 Mercury Grand Marquis LS, "Maisa"
    1995 Chevrolet Caprice Classic STW, "Sally"

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    Quote Originally Posted by Arquemann View Post
    Dual exhaust is probably your best bet, headers might be pushing it, considering CFI doesn't play nice with mods, or so I've heard. My CFI didn't play nice even stock, and then there's @sluggish91 with a ton of mods on the stock CFI.
    I did away with CFI and now I'm running a 4bbl Holley, still running the stock single exhaust. Mid to top end definitely got more lively.

    How well does the TFI / E coil ignition system play with a carburetor?

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    Lost and driftin' Arquemann's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 91merc View Post
    How well does the TFI / E coil ignition system play with a carburetor?
    TFI doesn't work without a computer. TFI can be made to work with an MSD ignition box, but I'm not made of money. I'm using a Ford Duraspark II distributor with a GM HEI module, still using the factory TFI coil though.
    You can read more from my MGM thread, a couple pages back. I started the carb swap in April or so.
    1985 Mercury Grand Marquis LS, "Maisa"
    1995 Chevrolet Caprice Classic STW, "Sally"

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    Still Wrenchin'! friskyfrankie's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 91merc View Post
    Not really look for a "performance vehicle " just a little more passing power lol. I'd be doing any work myself as me and my dad run a mobile mechanic business
    That surely helps. In that case, you can both do small incremental upgrades and see what they do. Just be aware the gains will probably be minimal.
    What I Own: 1993 Mercury Grand Marquis GS
    What I Help Maintain: 1996 CV / 1988 CV / 1988 Tempo

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    Quote Originally Posted by Arquemann View Post
    TFI doesn't work without a computer. TFI can be made to work with an MSD ignition box, but I'm not made of money. I'm using a Ford Duraspark II distributor with a GM HEI module, still using the factory TFI coil though.
    You can read more from my MGM thread, a couple pages back. I started the carb swap in April or so.

    How long did yours take? I can't have much down time as this is my daily lol

  10. #10
    Wagon Addicted Tiggie's Avatar
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    Sluggish91 has what is likely the most performance themed CFI build around here. His signature lists

    "CFI, K&N Filter, Edelbrock Performer 289 Intake, E7 Heads, BBK Shorty Headers, Summit H-pipe, Hooker Max Flow Mufflers, E-Fan, 3G Alternator, Race Crank Pulley, Bilstein Rear Shocks, KYB Front Shocks, Front Lowering Springs, FTI 2400 Stall Converter, PA Performance Valve Body, Motive 4.30 Gear, Eaton LSD Differential - I own quite possibly the fastest CFI powered box to the 1/8th mile: 9.95@68.89mph"

    At some point, he was considering a cam swap but I don't know if he ever completed it.
    1990 Country Squire - weekend cruiser, next project
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    The factory dual exhaust was supposed to be good for 15 hp. Trying to make performance upgrades with CFI, you'll eventually run into the limitations of the ECU programming.

    With CFI, just having it run properly is an achievement.
    1985 LTD Crown Victoria
    1977 Oldsmobile Cutlass Supreme
    1996 Dodge Ram 1500 4x4, 360

    Past: 1995 Crown Victoria Police Interceptor

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    I'd say dual exhaust gears/converter. Getting rid of 3.08's you likely have and getting into a 3.27 or 3.55 might wake it up, but I've never tried it on a LOPO CFI car so I may be disproven on that thought process. Beyond that it would involve dumping the CFI and going to a newer type system which is $$. Not sure but maybe a pair of stock Mustang exhaust manifolds would help? Just thinking outloud.
    These are highly engineered precision vehicles, the first step in diagnosing the problem is to strike the suspected offending part sharply and repeatedly with a blunt object, then re-test.

  13. #13
    P31 Pursuit Car Brown_Muscle's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by FordMan77 View Post
    I'd say dual exhaust gears/converter. Getting rid of 3.08's you likely have and getting into a 3.27 or 3.55 might wake it up, but I've never tried it on a LOPO CFI car so I may be disproven on that thought process. Beyond that it would involve dumping the CFI and going to a newer type system which is $$. Not sure but maybe a pair of stock Mustang exhaust manifolds would help? Just thinking outloud.

    I agree with this and every one else. Rear gear change and dual exhaust will be the best bang for your buck
    -Phil



    +1982 Ford LTD-S Police Car. Built 351w, Trickflow 11R 190 Heads, Holley Sniper EFI, RPM Intake+ Hyperspark dizzy, WR-AOD, Full exhaust headers to tails. 3.27 Trac-Lok Rear. Aluminum Police Driveshaft. Speedway Springs+Bilstein Shocks, Intermediate Brakes, HPP Steering Box.

    +2003 Acura CL Type S 6-speed

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    Truthfully, it is not budget friendly to try to even make it remotely fast. Really, you get what you get with your CFI performance. I have a lot into my garbage but its been a great learning experience maximizing the limits of this system. As with any car, the entire combination plays a large role in how the vehicle performs. The way I've been going about my CFI build is I've been asking myself, "has everything around the CFI system maximized already?". Basically what I'm trying to say is make the engine put the power down before adding more power. Try and make the most of what you already have. Shocks. Rear springs. Poly trans mount. Brass terminal ignition coil. Copper plugs. weight reduction....?
    1985 2-Door: CFI, K&N Filter, Edelbrock Performer 289 Intake, E7 Heads, BBK Shorty Headers, Summit H-pipe, Hooker Max Flow Mufflers, E-Fan, 3G Alternator, Race Crank Pulley, Bilstein Rear Shocks, KYB Front Shocks, Front Lowering Springs, FTI 2400 Stall Converter, PA Performance Valve Body, Motive 4.30 Gear, Eaton LSD Differential - I own quite possibly the fastest CFI powered box to the 1/8th mile: 9.95@68.89mph
    1991 4-Door (Dad's Car): Pro-M EFI, 306ci, Ford Racing Aluminum Heads, COMP XE264HR cam, Cobra 1.7 Rockers, Edelbrock Performer RPM 2 Intake, 30lb. Injectors, Custom 65mm TB/EGR Spacer, Pro-M 75mm MAF, BBK Ceramic Shorties, Custom Summit H-pipe, Walker Mufflers, ASP Crank Pulley, Jegs Built AOD, 3000 Stall Converter, Ford Racing 4.10 Gears

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    Lost and driftin' Arquemann's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 91merc View Post
    How long did yours take? I can't have much down time as this is my daily lol
    It could probably be a weekend-ish project if you're more experienced than me (quite likely), have all the parts ready and won't spend time painting valve covers, redoing all hoses, making 3 versions of a FP-regulator placement or cleaning up all the wiring in the engine bay.
    1985 Mercury Grand Marquis LS, "Maisa"
    1995 Chevrolet Caprice Classic STW, "Sally"

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    I'm an air-conditioned gypsy gadget73's Avatar
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    just a minor point, the TFI does not need a computer to work. The problem is that you get no advance, which means it just works incredibly poorly without something to make that happen.

    ut yeah, gearing, dual exhaust, and probably the electric fan are the only cost effective mods to be made. I don't happen to like electric fans though, one more thing to go wrong. Also bad prior experience having one shit out and leave me fixing one of the heater hoses in a parking lot with no tools. Removing hoses with a dime and slicing the blown end off with a random rusty razor blade found on the ground isn't my idea of a good time.

    86 Lincoln Town Car (Galactica).
    5.0 HO, CompCams XE258,Scorpion 1.72 roller rockers, 3.55 K code rear, tow package, BHPerformance ported E7 heads, Tmoss Explorer intake, 65mm throttle body, Hedman 1 5/8" headers, 2.5" dual exhaust, ASP underdrive pulley

    91 Lincoln Mark VII LSC SE, triple black (Timewarp) - poly front bushings, KYB struts and shocks, Holley SystemMax1 lower intake, SilverFox AOD valve body,

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    Member 91merc's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by gadget73 View Post
    just a minor point, the TFI does not need a computer to work. The problem is that you get no advance, which means it just works incredibly poorly without something to make that happen.

    ut yeah, gearing, dual exhaust, and probably the electric fan are the only cost effective mods to be made. I don't happen to like electric fans though, one more thing to go wrong. Also bad prior experience having one shit out and leave me fixing one of the heater hoses in a parking lot with no tools. Removing hoses with a dime and slicing the blown end off with a random rusty razor blade found on the ground isn't my idea of a good time.

    Would it mess with the timing if I just left the whole system hooked up except the fuel injectors since there would be a carburetor?

  18. #18
    Lost and driftin' Arquemann's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 91merc View Post
    Would it mess with the timing if I just left the whole system hooked up except the fuel injectors since there would be a carburetor?
    I've seen this done once, actually. Only problem is the TPS. That's gotta work or the whole system goes dumb.
    There are better and proven options. If you want to keep the TFI, you need an ignition box. The DS2+HEI combo I'm running costs very little; 60€ distributor, 20€ HEI module and a 30€ heatsink for the module plus a couple wires and connectors.
    1985 Mercury Grand Marquis LS, "Maisa"
    1995 Chevrolet Caprice Classic STW, "Sally"

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    Member 91merc's Avatar
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    I'm thinking that if I do anything major to the car performance wise I'll just rebuild the 351HO that I have sitting in my garage and conver to 4bbl carb and use an electronic converted points dizzy or something

  20. #20
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    Also, one of those "higher voltage" yellow accel coils wouldn't do much would it? I have one in the box laying around

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