It’s been a while since we last updated you on our Fox-body Mustang, dubbed “Project 666,” and we’ve been busy getting it ready to come back to life. The stock 5.0 is gone, the transmission has been swapped, the new suspension is hung, the fuel system is plumbed, and so much more. This car is basically all new, and finally ready to wake the neighbors and spin the rollers on our Dynojet. But first, a quick review of how we got here…

Before we show you the dyno results and reveal the Numbers of the Beast, an overview of all the hardware is in order. If you’ve been following along, this will all be familiar, but bear with us as we bring the noobs up to speed.

Here is a list of the previous updates on Project 666 – follow the links to get the in-depth articles and videos for each step.

• 351W-based 408 built by Ford Performance Solutions
• Kooks Custom Headers and Flowmaster Exhaust
• Tremec TKO – 600 Transmission and SPEC Clutch
• Willwood brake kit
• Team Z Suspension

Ready for Ignition

Hundreds of hours of work can be undone in just a few seconds when you fire the engine for the first time if you haven’t taken care of a few critical steps. The initial break-in sets the tone for the engine’s entire lifespan, and to make sure we were doing it right, we filled our 408 with COMP Cams Break In Oil, which is formulated to improve surface mating of the rotating assembly, piston rings, cam, and lifters. It carries a proprietary additive package that includes zinc, phosphorous, molybdenum, and detergents, and it’s fully compatible with gasoline, methanol, and high-octane race fuel. Speaking of fuel, the gas tank was filled with VP100 unleaded as a little insurance against detonation while we got the jetting and timing dialed in, and we topped off the gearbox and differential with the appropriate Royal Purple lubes.

One of the last steps in our build was the installation of a Painless Performance wiring kit, so we did a final check of our fan, water pump, and fuel pump operation before turning the 408 over. The Windsor barked to life for the first time, and after a quick break-in and baseline timing adjustment, it was finally time to put Project 666 on the dyno and see what we really had.

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Dyno Run #1

We got the car up on the Dynojet and the whole office stepped out into the shop to see what this thing could do (also, it’s impossible to do any work when a car is on the dyno, too). The first run was a little choppy, clearly because of a fat air/fuel ratio, but we were still impressed with 458 HP and 422 TQ at the rear wheels. We decided to take the jet sizes down from 78 to 76 for the primaries and 86 to 85 for the secondaries to lean it out a bit.


Just a quick change of the carburetor jets would help Project 666 pick up a few extra ponies.

Dyno Run #2

On our second try on the rollers, the results were much better. The small tweak in jet sizes and a timing adjustment netted us about 20 more horsepower. That brought our total power level to 483 RWHP and 455 RWTQ. We’re still short of our 666 horsepower goal for this car, but we’re definitely on the way.

Setting up the Suspension for the Track

Dyno numbers are great, but we don’t race on the rollers and with the car finally running and ready to go, we needed to do some final adjustments to the suspension. Most people forget a critical step when setting up the chassis, and that is to have the the right amount of weight in the driver’s seat. That ballast happened to be me, and with me behind the wheel we adjusted the ride height, pinion angle, toe angle, as well as camber and caster. Finally, after the adjustments were made, the last task was to install the rear sway bar and mounts.

Baseline Suspension Setup:

  • Rear Ride Height: 27.75″ driver’s side, 27.25″ passenger side
  • Pinion angle: -1.5º
  • Front Toe Angle: 1/16” inward
  • Front Camber: 0º
  • Front Caster: Max caster, equal on both sides

So where do we stand with Project 666? It certainly has been a long journey, but we are finally at the point were we can take her to the track and really find out what this car can do. Even though we haven’t met our goal of 666 rear wheel horsepower yet, we did receive a pretty hefty improvement, going from 187.6 RWHP with the original 5.0 to 537.8 with the new 408, with plenty more to come.

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