Tuesday, July 31, 2007

Jason's Mustang Restoration Project - The First Ride(Part 5)


This is a set of photos showing some photos from the first day the engine ran, and my first ride in the Mustang.

January 26, 2002

Well, the final preparations for the first engine firing were finally done today. The transmisison is installed, and all the fluids have been filled, except for the trans which will need to be filled right after it starts for the first time.

We turned it over for the first time, and nothing happened. It didnt sound like it was getting any fuel. We used a special compressed air pump on the fuel line, and got the gas to finally come to the front of the car.

After a few more tries, and a little fuel dripped into the fuel bowl of the carburetor, it finally started!

It runs great. Sounds great, even with the open pipes. We filled the rest of the transmission fluid, and let it warm up. We could smell the paint on the exhaust manifolds burning away. There were no leaking fluids.

So then we shut it down, and put the car up on the lift. We installed the rest of the exhaust system, and started it back up.

For the first time, I finally hear what the car should sound like. There is nothing like that mid 60's Ford small block V8 sound.

I decided to go for my first ride. The car shifted into reverse for the first time in 20 years, and began rolling under its own power. I made it out to the street, and shifted into drive, and away I went!

I made it to the end of the block, and the car died.

Turns out that we blew so much fuel thru the lines at the beginning of the day that we ran out of gas!

So we got the first "doofus" out of the way too.

The results of the first drive were this: The car missed pretty bad when I gave it some gas, and clunked like heck on the way down the street.

It will need U joints, and a check to see if anything clogged the carb. We noticed fuel coming out of the vent over the fuel bowl, so there might be a little piece of crud stuck in the needle valve.

I will leave the car at the shop to let them work those things out.

February 2, 2002

This should have been a great day, but it turned out to be a pretty bad day.

The Universal joints on the drive shaft have now been fixed, and the exhaust system has been tweaked to keep it from clunking up against the undercarriage.

Whatever was stuck in the carb fuel bowl either dissolved, or got blown through, so there was no need to take it apart.

So I finally got to take the car for my first drive all the way around the block. The car ran pretty good, only missing slightly when the gas was pressed hard. I felt a little bit of good old American V8 acceleration down the back stretch, though I didnt really try to punch it too hard.

So I was very happy. Everything was working great!

I went back in and collected all the extra or old parts, my books, and whetever else I had there, and finally went in and paid for everything.

We got the car up onto the trailer, and strapped it down....

When I strapped down the front, I threw the loose slack from the long strap into the engine bay, and slammed the hood. I figured this would keep it from flapping in the breeze on the way home.

This was a bad idea, because after I left, I only made it about 3 blocks and the car slid right off the trailer!

When this happened, the car was still in park and it stopped right there in the middle of the street. The strap that had been in the engine bay somehow got caught on the upper radiator hose, and tore it off, along with a big chunk of the radiator. Antifreeze was all over the street.

I managed to push the car to the side of the street, and called my dad. He got there quickly, and we decided to just start the engine and drive it back up onto the trailer. It started fine, and made it back up there with no problem.

What I think happened is that the straps were just not tight enough, and when I went over the railroad tracks in downtown Des Plaines, the front hooks must have popped off. The next time I hit the gas a couple of blocks later, the car just slid off the slippery trailer (it was below freezing outside, and a little icy.)

I decided to just put more straps on (my dad had some extras at home) and just try to get the car home. I stopped 7 times in 20 miles to check the straps, and made it home with no further problems.

When I got home, I started it again, backed it off the trailer, and pulled into the garage. I cleaned up all the antifreeze, drained what was left, and checked for more damage. The upper lip of the radiator mounting panel was bent a bit from the strap getting torn out, but I was able to straighten it out for the most part.

I will probably need to readress this panel before the car is painted, to make sure it is all straight.

Since I was so bummed out, I never did get the camera out. I dont think I want to remember this day with lots of pictures... Oh well, I'm sure I will have it all fixed soon!

February 7, 2002

I was able to order replacements for all the damaged items this week from Mustang of Chicago, and picked it all up today. I reinstalled the radiator and upper hose and re-filled the antiifreeze. Nothing leaked, and it doesnt look like the fan is going to hit anything (which I was a little worried about.)

The new radiator is not quite original looking, but it is close enough for now. I will keep looking for one that is more correct, but there is no hurry at this point.

I will try to start the car this weekend when I can have a little daylight.

Dan's '68 Mustang Restomod Project(Part 4)


April 2006

Hood and fenders finally on!
Just after my first test drive!

After longer than I had hoped since my last update (because of not getting a lot of weekends to myself) I drove it on Sunday, April 30th for the first time in EIGHT YEARS!! I wanted to bed in the brakes and make sure things were working before taking it over the alignment shop. I did it EARLY (like 6:15AM early) on Sunday morning so that I could avoid traffic. I swear I woke up half the neighborhood when I fired it up! With tires squealing (from non-alignment, not from getting on the throttle!) I drove it about 5 miles. I still need to finish a lot of things, but it is nearly road legal, so at least I can drive it!! I need to finish installing the door windows, some more wiring, the carpets, dyeing the rear seat and seat covers on the front seats (until I get around to getting them all recovered,) the custom mirrors, tail pipes, and a bunch of other miscellaneous things.

May 2006


My trip to the alignment shop was an adventure! After going to one close by and taking all back roads (within 2 miles of my house,) the Firestone couldn't put it on their alignment rack because my car was too low!! They told me to go to this other one that had the better rack--but that was 10 miles away! So I had to go over there with my front wheel squealing (I had a lifetime alignment plan at Firestone so I didn't want to go elsewhere.) Then I had a 2 mile detour due to road construction. Anyway...the car is drivable!! Now I am just working out the bugs. Things like: I have too radical of a cam to keep my vacuum high enough to properly operate the brake power booster, so I have go manual. The '95 Mustang GT brake master cylinder doesn't operate my rear disc brakes adequately enough so I am going with a '93 Cobra master cylinder. Door windows need minor adjustment so the power window motors don't strain when getting to the top. The front wheels rubbed the inner part of the fenders so I had to get new wheels. I went with ones with a 4.75" offset--the old ones had 4.25". They look nearly identical, but are not Edelbrock's.

June 2006

I converted the brakes over to manual and thy work fine now. I think I messed with them for two or three weeks. Other than that, I didn't do too much to the car.

July 2006

Bellevue Show

Fugate Ford

Went to the Vintage Races the first weekend in July. I missed one day because my carburetor was flooding out. Too much fuel pressure was the culprit so I got a regulator. But I got a chance to go the second day. It was a blast running around the track for the parade laps! But I discovered that cornering at high speed isn't much fun as the power rack-n-pinion doesn't give a lot of road feedback. I think if I were to do it over, I would have got the manual rack. But since I am not going to be racing it, I will keep it the way it is. More street drivable anyway.

I did the annual Pony Trails and went to the Bellevue show later in July and I also ordered my Holley TBI--good bye carburetor!!

August 2006

Bowen Scarff Show

I wend to the Bowen Scarff Show and place first in the modified category and also put my car into my car clubs annual show. I didn't do a lot to the car, but I started laying out the TBI harness to be installed.

September 2006

Installed the TBI and got it tuned so that it runs. I need to get the O2 sensor welded in so I can finish off the tunning.

Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Dan's '68 Mustang Restomod Project(Part 3)


May 2005 Update

The engine fired up on the very first attempt--just as soon as the fuel hit the combustion chambers! And it idled along just as if it was already warmed up--the engine hadn't been run in over 5 years!! Pretty good for static timing, too!

Strange Nodular case for the rear-end that I am building. A Detroit TrueTrac will be going in here.

As you can see, I have the engine in--and it runs!!! I decided to get the rive-train in order before finishing off the body. It's therapeutic and motivating!! I will have the drive-train and brakes all done by the end of May and then it is time to work overtime in getting the Stang ready to paint. I have a deadline of August to have it out of my brother's shop!! I am pretty much done with the major mods, though still have to fabricate the grill and fit up the front fiberglass valance.

June/July 2005

I don't have a lot of pictures of the un-glamorous fine tuning of the bodywork!

Things I accomplished: rear brakes installed, rear brake lines installed, rear gears installed, exhaust fitted up, traction bars installed, fuel line mostly installed, moved to paint booth and filler primed the car. Body work is going good and I should be ready to paint by the end of July!!!

August 2005

Practicing on the valances and rock guard. Turned out good...so now to the car!

Taping off for the door jambs. Looks like the Partridge Family bus!

Got the jambs painted. I am using a single stage enamel for this.

Underside of the trunk lid and hood also with single stage enamel.

Installed quarter extensions with stand-offs. Makes painting them much easier!! Also masking the jambs.

After laying down white primer and then white basecoat, I measured out and masked off the stripes.

Then I seal coated with black primer.

Then I put on the color and then the clear.

At the Pierce County Mustang Club show (in route to my home)

Got the car home, put the rear wheels on.

Well, its home! After months of bodywork (and I probably could have done another months worth to really get it good) I got the thing painted. Not flawless, but not bad either! Painting your own car can be very intimidating. Especially when it is your first one and painting it a metallic color to boot. I had some issues with an exhaust fan kicking up some major junk and some blue paint dust getting into my white stripes on my first clear coat. I had to repaint the stripes and then finish clearing. I got some "tiger striping" in my color that is for the most part unnoticeable, but I have seen as much in some professional jobs, so I can't complain too much. Anyway, now the fun part really gets going--putting it all together!!