Saleen Oil Pan

By: Bob Goodson
August 14, 2015

Winding Down On Parts

The list of parts for Number 4 is getting shorter.  Some things that seem easy to find have been challenging.  The oil pan that Saleen sold is a perfect example of that.  I’ve been looking for one since I bought the car.  Saleen offered a race oil pan as an option to add on the motor.  The oil pan is simply a Canton 7qt road race oil pan with baffles and trap doors to keep oil around the pickup during hard cornering.  You might say “Well… Canton still makes that part.”  Yes, you are correct in that they do.  However the part is not made the same way they made them 20 years ago.  The modern versions use a stamped front sump pan.  It’s simply an unmodified stock front sump. The pan is a rear sump oil pickup but has a front sump with a drain plug for extra oil capacity and is designed to allow the engine K member to cross in the middle.  

The modern Canton road race oil pan. Note the front of the pan is smooth and a stamped steel design.

When Saleen sold these oil pans the front sump was welded out of sheet metal with the drain plug on the driver side.

Oil Pan on SA10 #08. Note the welds seams on the pan.

View from the Passenger Side on SA10 #08

This is the rear of the pan to the left on SA10 #08.  The sump with the oil pickup and baffles is the same design that was on the early ones.  I’m sure there are some modern improvements internally but the external look of the rear sump on both oil pans looks identical.  
This part in good condition has not been easy to find. Most of what I had found was rusted, bent, missing pieces, modified, or the new version of this pan.  

A couple of weeks ago my Dad came up to visit and we made a trip an hour and a half away to pick up the correct oil pan.  It was an awesome day for two reasons. 1. I got the oil pan I’ve been looking for and 2. I got to share that with my Dad.  We stopped and looked at a 61 Thunderbird in the process.  It’s a big deal because my Dad has fought cancer.  Diagnosed in 2012 he went through chemo treatments and is not in full remission but is managing.  It’s a nasty disease and the treatments are even more nasty.  You’ll notice that my posts started to slow down around that time.  It’s because that was more important than this project.  So to spend a whole day with my Dad hanging out talking cars is/was immeasurable.  Make the most of every day and don’t fight the small stuff.  The shop we went to grab the oil pan from had some engines on stands being put together and we spent a brief moment looking at them and asking questions. Priceless moments these days.

This kind of detail is what I want to go into this car. Not sure why I’m obsessed with these details but I guess it’s fulfilling a part of a dream I have and I want the car to be period correct.  It has to look as if it was built in 1994.

The hardest part about it all is that todays technology in suspension, engine and interior is far superior to 20 years ago. And having owned Mustangs with that modern suspension and some interior pieces makes this build difficult at times.  This is because I know the potential of a car with modern upgrades.  Ultimately it has to be period correct or I won’t be happy with it.  If I miss a detail then that detail, no matter how small, will jump out at me every time I look at the car or drive it.  It has to be right for that period in time. That’s the core of this project.

Below is 93 #57 back on the road.  Still working out some cooling issues with it.  Radiator may have some clogged tubes.  Weeding through those kind of issues.  Just part of daily driving an old car.

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