Convert A Scattershield To Cable Clutch Actuation

Scattershield Installation With Cable Clutch Conversion (For 289, 302 and 351W Engines)

This page describes the conversion of a steel scattershield from original type linkage to cable clutch

The scattershield, originally designed for a toploader 4-speed, was first modified with an adapter plate for the installation of a 5-speed T-5 transmission.

Another view showing the scattershield and it's block plate, flywheel, and clutch bolted to the rear of a 289 block.

First real modification was to install the ball stud inside on the passenger side of the bellhousing. The new fork for the cable clutch pivots from the stud as it is pulled forward by the cable.  Alignment was straightforward. Just assemble the scattershield onto the transmission, without the engine, and install the throwout bearing onto the clutch release fork. The ballstud is screwed into a 1/2" nut and is clipped to the retainer spring on the release arm.  Once everything is aligned (the  transmission aligns the throwout bearing) weld the 1/2" nut to the scattershield. This is where the trial and error begins...

You must install the clutch, scattershield and transmission onto the block to determine the correct height for the ballstud.  It should be adjusted so that there is a small amount of clearance between the throwout bearing and the pressure plate when the release arm is at it's rearmost travel.  This took three times, removing the scattershield each time, to get it right.

This view shows the new 87-93 Mustang clutch release fork mocked up on the new ballstud positioned inside the scattershield.

This shows that the larger size of the scattershield makes for a tight fit.  The release arm is actually about 1/2" too short to be able to install the adjustable cable.

Another view showing the initial mock-up

This view shows the throwout bearing in position during the initial mock-up

It was decided that the release arm's geometry would be better in relation to the cable if it was extended about 1/2".This is the front side of the release arm AFTER it was extended.  The metal is too hard for a hacksaw, so a cutoff wheel was used.  Bracing was added to the rear of the arm to bridge the resulting 1/2" gap.  The angle of the outer end was pushed slightly rearward to allow maximum travel of the arm as the cable actuates it.

Additional bracing was added to the back side of the release arm. The arm sees a lot of stress when actuating the clutch, so it needs to be very strong.1/4" thick steel overlapped each end of the sectioned area of the arm and was welded securely in place. Check for clearance between the extended arm and any possible obstructions inside the scattershield. Maximum rearward travel of the arm is a necessity.

Here is the final installation.  A 5/8" hole was drilled in the scattershield's flange to provide a stop for the clutch cable housing. That position, with the extended release arm, provided perfect alignment for the cable to actuate  the release arm.

Shows the 87-93 Mustang adjustable cable installed.All that remains is to build a custom cover for the cable and clutch release arm to keep dirt out.

The finished product, ready for installation into the car! Thanks to Tom McWillie for the use of his scattershield, flywheel, clutch and T-5 transmission

This same type modification can be done if it is desired to install a cable clutch system on an original
Toploader or T-10 Mustang transmission.  The only difference would be that no T-5 adapter plate would be
installed on the scattershield.