1999 Ford F-150 Receives a V10 Transplant

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F-150 Online member fearlessly tackles a difficult engine swap…with glorious results.

Hot rodding is about much more than style and flair. It’s also about combining components that never went together in the first place. Things like a 1999 Ford F-150 and a Triton V10 from a Super Duty/Excursion from that same era. This sort of Frankenstein transformation isn’t exactly easy, of course. But it’s nothing that will scare away our brave and talented F-150 Online forum members.

Obviously, there are enticing reasons to swap a V10 into a 1999 Ford F-150. For starters, the 4.6 and 5.4 V8 engines of this era were underpowered. Plus, it’s just plain freakin’ cool. Who wouldn’t be impressed by a swap like this? Heck, you’ll probably get tired of showing it off to all the curious onlookers. And we’re guessing all of those reasons are what prompted ishootstuff to take the plunge. Oh, and the fact that his original 5.4 bit the dust.

1999 Ford F-150

Thankfully, he also documented the entire process in this excellent thread. And there are plenty of pointers and lessons learned, which is quite helpful if you’re ever contemplating a similar swap.

“Well… I sucked up water and hosed my 2nd 5.4. It destroyed the crank, two rods, timing chains, timing chain guides and tensioners, oil pump, and probably cam bearings.

It didn’t die the day I ingested the water, but just made a light rattling. I knew it wasn’t a rod knock and I figured I’d just milk it till it died. Well… it seized up 200 miles from home on Christmas Eve. I had started to think it would just rattle forever because I had put quite a few miles on it – I know – stupid.

The timing chains sawed lots of metal off the block and front cover, eroding the bearings and clogging the oil pump. I suddenly lost oil pressure and it seized.

Anyway, I think this truck will be more fun with some extra power, so I bought a V10, harness, and ECU today. My truck has the E4OD (EDIT: It turns out it’s a 4R100) and LSD which should handle the V10 just fine. It will be a couple weeks before I get started, but I thought I’d start a thread to document the process.”

1999 Ford F-150

As you might imagine, putting something in a truck that didn’t originally belong there isn’t easy. But that’s what posts like this are for – advice!

“Yesterday I swapped over parts. Mounts, oil filter adapter, and flexplate all had to swap. I also took off the intake (needs to be off for clearance) and installed new plugs. I started to work on wiring, but it hurt my brain, so I grabbed some beer and made the spacers I assume I’m going to need on the frame side of the engine mounts.

Funny story… I made the spacers from a piece of steel that I found on the side of the road when the 5.4 seized. An omen?

For anyone wanting to do this, you will NEED to have a leveler to get that V10 into the truck unless you remove the cab. I needed the engine almost vertical and I had to remove several bolts from the front and rear of the engine, as well as the harmonic dampener to get it to clear and it was still REALLY tight. I bent the A/C condenser a little. Good thing I had some wood and foam protecting it.”

1999 Ford F-150

On top of that, the exhaust didn’t line up and required some fabrication work. The cruise control cable was too short, and the fuel injector plugs are different. Oh, and the wiring is apparently a nightmare.

“There have been several times where I caught myself just staring at the engine compartment thinking I’m in over my head.

I still have some mechanical hurdles too. The dipstick for the tranny won’t go in. I don’t know if I bent it or if it’s the different exhaust manifolds or what. I haven’t even started to think about the cruise control cable or vacuum lines. Then there’s PATS… It also must pass smog. “

Regardless, ishootstuff wouldn’t accept defeat from any of these plentiful obstacles. He kept at it until the beast was running. And even with various electrical gremlins rearing their ugly head, he tackled them one by one until the truck was running reliably. Whether you’re thinking of completing such a swap yourself or you just love the technical aspect of things, be sure and check out the entire build thread. It’s a epic journey for sure, one well worth the read.

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