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Austin Vert

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Everything posted by Austin Vert

  1. Hi to all, I wanted to follow up on a post that was put up several months ago, by a member that was struggling with trying to get decent upgrade door hinges for his Mustang. I told him that i was experimenting with aftermarket Taiwan hinges, and i would get back to the Forum and tell him how i got on. So here i am, with some interesting results and feedback that i hope will benefit the Forum members as to a heads up on a better way to go with upgrading your '71 to '73 door hinges. Going way back years ago, this very topic was raised in the Forum about worn out original hinge pins and bushes on all upper and lower hinges. As i recall a Forum member (Q Code 351) put forward a very good solution to repairing old worn out hinge pins and bushes by buying a kit that once installed, never need to be replaced - just lubed up when servicing the car. (see reference below) The point is, that i should have taken his advice back then. Instead, i took the long way 'round and ended up paying a big price for my troubles. So here's my sad story............................................. I bought my '73 Mustang Convertible back in 2011. The car was in very good original condition. The passengers side door hinges were in perfect condition, but the drivers side lower hinge had a degree of play in it, and the roller/torsion bar setup had lost its door holding strength, or so i thought. (they never had any decent holding strength in the original factory ones anyway). Back then, i had the option of buying a new hinge pin/ bushing kit to remedy the door play problem, but i chose the path of removing my original hinge, and replacing it with an aftermarket version to also remedy the weak roller closing problem. That's were i made the wrong decision. The first aftermarket lower hinge failed. I spray painted it up, installed it on the car, went to close the door for the first time, and the torsion bar broke clean off straight away. That was that. My next mistake was to experiment with a Dynacorn brand hinge, hoping that the quality would be better, and solve my problems. But no, the hinge failed as well, this time without breaking the torsion bar. But the door did not want to close properly, and if i forced it to close, it would have damaged the hinge badly as well. What i discovered, was the cut out hole in the hinge body where the torsion bar goes into was round circular shaped, and was too small a diameter. This was the root cause of why the aftermarket hinges were not working or functioning properly. I tried to enlarge the hole in the Dynacorn hinge. That helped, but did not solve the problem as my door made a noisy clunking sound every time you opened or closed it. That's when the Gods smiled down upon me. I got real lucky, and stumbled upon a guy down in Tasmania who was selling a set of genuine original NOS upper and lower hinges for the drivers side. $300.00 Australian. I also discovered that the original factory lower hinges have a quarter pie shaped cut out hole where the torsion bars go into. This shaped hole allows for the proper and correct movement to the torsion bar when the doors are opened and closed as the roller wheels run across the torsion bar surface. On all aftermarket versions, they only provide a small circular shaped hole that does not allow the torsion bar to move properly in the hole, thus making the door hinge a failure. However, i have noted in the past, some Forum members stating that their aftermarket lower hinges have performed well. How this is so is beyond me. Maybe they got lucky, and the circular hole did not play up for them. I really don't know. I got badly burnt with the Dynacorn and Mr. Quang's Taiwan Saturday night special. How many more purchase tries do i keep on making before maybe coming up with one that actually works properly. Really? I don't think so. At this stage, i could have chosen to go back to my original factory hinge and get a new bushing kit, but i bit the bullet and bought the NOS instead. As you would expect, i painted it up, installed it, and the fit was perfect with no open or closing problems. The weak roller resistance issue still remains, but has slightly improved, which gets back to the fact that this roller/ torsion bar design was never much good in the first place. ( In Australia, we have a saying for this - pissweak!) I also decided not to use the newly purchased upper hinge, as my original one is in perfect condition believe it or not. OK, so to sum up, i have laid out a list below as a guide to helping members make a better choice. Listed from best option to worst option. 1. Best option. Replace hinges with NOS factory. This is a big problem, as trying to find these NOS hinges is like digging for gold. (very rare, and hard to come by). Good luck to you if you find some. 2. Option 2. If your factory original hinges are in decent shape, but have pin/ bushing issues only, then replace them with the cheap bushing kit. This is the second best cheapest option. (However, look out for hogged out hinge body holes that take the bushings.) If they are hogged out, then the Zert kit should get you out of jail here, as a standard cheap bushing kit won't cut it. The more expensive rebuild kits with the Zerts option would be a better way to go, but more pricey. If you have hogged out holes, and are watching your money, then option 3 could be a better choice. 3. Option 3. If your factory original hinges are stuffed all 'round, then West Coast Cougar sell factory original, second hand core hinges in decent condition. You buy the cheap extra pin/ bushing kit as well and you should be out of trouble. You can also go with the Zerts kit in these if you want as well. You may be considering buying second hand factory original used hinges on E bay or the like. Be careful here as the hinge body bushing holes could be worn and hogged out. Cracks in the hinge body could also be present. Rollers and roller bushings could be stuffed. The torsion bar could also be grooved out and damaged.You would want to inspect them in person before you bought them. Another case of buyer beware here. Better to deal with a reputable company like West Coast Cougars for peace of mind and a saving of money. 4. Option 4. Stick to buying the crappy aftermarket hinges. To be fair, i have never purchased an aftermarket upper hinge, left or right, only a lower drivers side. In any case these lower hinges are rubbish in respect to the fact that the cut out holes were not done and shaped properly, thus causing big problems with the working door action. The hinge body bolt holes are not aligned correctly, thus causing door fit up problems, and the thickness of the steel hinge bodies is inferior to the factory originals, thus making the overall strength of the hinge inferior. These hinges are poor quality rubbish, and a waste of money, and manufacture of them should stop, until a better designed hinge can be made. I discovered that to my trouble and cost, and learnt the hard way. Footnote: All the aftermarket hinges i investigated online had circular cut out body holes for the torsion bars. If by chance, you stumble on one that has a genuine quarter shaped pie cut out, then it may be worth considering. Aftermarket single hinges are not cheap to buy. If that hinge still causes problems, then you've done your money. Your risk. Second footnote: When i think about it, the really sad thing here is that if these hinges had of been made in America instead of Taiwan, then fair bet, they would have been made properly and worked properly. I prey that in time, a shift will occur when America starts manufacturing the aftermarket parts more, and delivers a better quality product, instead of the cheap labor, Asian rubbish, that we have come to enjoy so much. Ha, Ha. Third Footnote: Handy hint! Simple test for hinge pin/bush wear. Open car door fully on a level surface. Bend over to grab the bottom underside edge of the door lock corner with both hands. Pull or lift upwards. If the door has any up and down play or movement, then you have a wear problem. The bigger the movement,the worse the wear problem is. For top notch condition hinges, there should be no movement up and down at all. (Watch you back with this one. Not recommended for folks with bad backs) See my references and links below. 1. West Coast Cougars factory cores for sale, plus great instructional video provided as well. https://secure.cougarpartscatalog.com/71dsl.html 2. Link to the Zert kit for sale. Shopping around could save you money maybe. https://www.ebay.com.au/itm/1971-73-Mustang-Cougar-Door-Hinge-Rebuild-Kit-with-Zerks-/121300860821 3. See my photos as a reference. They show you my NOS hinge that i bought with correct quarter pie shaped cutout, and an old used second hand Factory original hinge with the same quarter pie shaped cutout. After much investigation, i could not find any aftermarket lower hinges with the quarter cut outs. They all have circular cut outs. Big problem! Buy at your own risk. I bought two of them and both failed badly. See an example of an aftermarket hinge with a circular cut out. Hope all that helps, Greg.
  2. Hi Idaho Chris, Regards your center console color. The black contrast is an option, and looks pretty good. However, if you wanted to color change it to matching blue, the only way to achieve this is to take your car down to a decent paint and panel shop that can either color match paint by eye of use a spectrograph analizer. The best paint to work with is auto acrylic Lacquer, but 2 pak solids can be ok as well. You can even get to choose the gloss level you want to end up with. Your whole interior has a few different shades of blue. Choose the one that you like the look of best and go with that.Also the upholstery has a very fine hint of metallic in it. This effect can also be reproduced in the made up paint. If you possess spray guns and a compressor, you could take on this refinish job yourself. If not, then leave it to a pro spray painter to refinish, as spraying plastics is always a tricky deal to get it right. So forget rattle can paints, color matching is the only way to get a good match that you are chasing. Hope that helps. Greg (pro spray painter)
  3. Thanks for the feedback Eric. Wow, times have been really hard for you in many ways. Sorry to hear about your mother passing. Loosing a parent is always a very hard thing to come to terms with. The loss of your family pet brings great sorrow as well. Please accept my sincere sympathies Eric. Sounds like you are happy enough to keep on working for the forseeable future. Weather and temps over where you are have been pretty bad i hear.Power outages as well - not good. Good to hear your Mustang is sound and well though. I think what Chuck has said above covers it very well. Hang in there champ! Greg.
  4. Hi Chuck, Thanks for your reply. Yes, from a performance perspective, the tires are up there with the Mastercrafts, if not somewhat better. Hope you are running ok with things. Hi Mike, Hope your keeping well these days. Yes, the feedback i got was that these tires are ok in the rain from general consensus. I would want to prove that myself, but don't think i'll get the opportunity. He, he. Interesting comment on the lettering offset. Yeah, don't know what's going on there. Maybe it's an Aussie production thing or whatever. I remember you're not a great fan of white lettering on your sidewalls. As far as the lettering goes, i prefer the Avengers in that regard as the letters are positioned closer to the rim and when spelt out, look more attractive than calling your tires Galaxy. Hope your Mustang is running ok and you still are enjoying her. Thanks Guys, Greg.
  5. Hi Everyone, Just wanted to follow up on my last report, with my story on buying new tires for Goldie, my '73 Vert. Hope you find it good, interesting info. Introduction. For the Forum members that have followed me over the years, you will know that when it comes to choice of wheels and rubber, i'm old school in my tastes. For me, the look i'm chasing is the classic Magnum 500 x15inch chrome rims,teamed up with old school tires such as T/A Radials with white lettering on the sidewalls. For Goldie, i ended up settling on Magnum 500 rims. Front- 15x8 and back - 15x10. Going back to 2011, i had the choice of buying leading brands such as T/A Radials, Cooper Cobras, Mastercraft Avengers etc. My research led me to buy and try the Avengers, as i had received mixed reports on the other brands. I've been running Avengers since 2011 on all my American cars i've owned. ( '73 Mustang Vert/ '73 Mach 1/ '71 Dodge Challenger Vert) My common go to size is Front - 245/60 x15 and Back - 295/50x15. on all cars. All i can say, is that i have been very, very happy with the Avengers over the years. To me, they are really are a great all 'round tire. The only exception would be that since i NEVER drive my classic cars in wet weather, i cannot give you any feedback as to how these tires perform in the wet. Sorry.The only other issue that used to annoy me, was that on the back of the Vert, i installed heavy duty leaf springs to set the suspension slightly high. The idea was to help clear the outer edge of the tire from rubbing on the inner wheel arch lip when going over heavy dips in the road or bad potholes. I almost solved this problem, but on some very bad roads, and with extra load such as passengers, i got the occasional rub issue. This slight rubbing problem did not damage the tire in any way would you believe. However, there's some wise old sayings in life. Don't assume anything to be automatically right, and when your on a good thing, stick to it. In the first case, my Avengers were getting old in years (coming up to 10 years old). Really time to buy some new ones. Funny thing was, is that all tires had heaps of tread left (almost like brand new), and the sidewalls looked spot on. The rubber overall still looked fresh and soft. They still had to go based on age - so sad. I assumed that all tires were 10 years old. I only checked the passengers side tires and assumed the drivers side tires were the same. When i was at the tire shop getting my new tires installed, the owner told me that the drivers side tires were 15 years old. Holy crap. That's dangerous driving. I will live and learn from that experience i can tell you. Would you believe that the tire shop owner inspected and showed me all four tires on the insides, and found them to be in good condition as well, but i was not going to take any chances. So, it was time to grab some new tires....................................................................... The purchase. As for the second wise saying in life, it made perfect sense to me to stick with the tires i knew and liked so much. However, i was in for a nasty surprise. Realizing that i had to move fast on getting new rubber, i started to touch base with my old suppliers of the Mastercraft Avenger tires before last Christmas. They told me that none were available to purchase in Australia due to so called manufacture and distribution issues around the world and America, and it could be months away before any would arrive. In desperation, i checked with other brands like Cobras and B.F. Goodrich, but sadly it was the same story. I was caught between a rock and a hard place. I waited for three months. Out of desperation, i deep dived into investigating other possible brands to get me out of trouble. I stumbled on a brand that i never heard of before - Radial Galaxy R1 tire by Vitour. (an asian tire i believe) I spent hours researching these tires, and much to my surprise, they came up with very good critique and review all 'round. The good news was that these tires were available in Australia in good supply, and were available in my sizes, white lettering and all. I pulled the trigger in April, 2021, and bought a set for Goldie. All i can say, is i am again, very happy with these tires. They are just great, and perform super well - just as good as the Avengers did. Quiet/ good handling and cornering, great road hugging, with the excepting of wet weather handling of course. They were much cheaper to buy than the Avengers as well. ($750.00 Australian fitted and balanced/ $540.00 US Dollars) These tires are sold in America too. Lastly, the shoulders of the new tires are more curved, and thus, has solved my rear tire rubbing problem completely, as i get good clearance with the inner wheel arch lip. Your US reference ................................... https://www.performanceplustire.com/tires-for-sale/vitour-tires/galaxy-r1-5/ts:29550-15:ty:Tire/ Your Australian reference ................................................ https://www.etyrestore.com.au/new_store_listing.php?tyre_id=748 Goldie walk around with the old Avenger tires - (Sorry for the shaky/ noisy video) Goldie with the new Vitour Tires. She's sitting high stance here, as she's just been dropped off the front/back jacks and hasn't settled. (Notice the shoulders are more rounded than the Avengers) Thanks, Greg.
  6. Hi Eric! Great to hear from you. Hope you and family are going ok. How's that legend Mustang of yours going? You must have just about most things sorted out on the old girl by now i guess. Are your paint and panel repairs holding up to the test of time? Kevin's Mach 1 story sounds interesting. Must catch up with that. All the best for now Eric, Greg.
  7. Hey Kevin, Oh my gosh, that is a tragedy man. What a most unfortunate, terrible thing to happen to you. I hope that you were not injured or hurt in this accident to any degree. You must have been heart broken to say the least. Looking at the basics, may i make a few comments in passing. First, if the other driver caused the accident, does he have insurance to cover the claim on your car? Also, that is a big front end collision. Your car will centainly need to be put on a pro body alignment rack to make it right again from front to back. I wonder if you will be able to get all the parts you will need to completely repair the car. The paint job will need to go all the way down the sides of the car to get the color/ metallic effect right. Lastly, being in the crash repair game most of my working life, i have found that once any car is damaged to this extent, it can never be bought back to the exact level at where it was originally. That said, it would be interesting to know how you feel about the car now, and what your thoughts would be on future ownership. I feel resale value could suffer to some extent, as the general public see major damaged cars as a negative, no matter how good and professionally repaired they were. Speaking for myself, if Goldie suffered a similar fate as yours has, i would get it repaired and then sell it on, as i would never feel the same way about the car again. But that's just me. Greg.
  8. Hi Bill. Good to hear from you. Thanks for your feedback. You make some good points there. I agree, that age would have some influence to help increase drag resistance, but to what degree i could not be sure. Also note, that the photos of the channel assemblies i put in, are not my assemblies that are on my car. They are a rusted out second hand pair i bought in from the States to use a a back up, in the event that my originals could not be readjusted. I think the best thing i am enjoying about my retirement is getting off the merry - go - round of life, and how that grinds you down over the years. Hope you are still enjoying your Mustang like myself. All the best, Greg.
  9. Hi there Kevin and Don. Kevin ................ Thanks for your warm welcome. Hope life is treating you and family not too bad. Your Mustang is looking very sharp i see, and you video of the beast tearing up the road tells me she's loaded with power! Great ride Kevin - you must be very proud of her. Don - Thanks too for your welcome. I hope you and family are going ok too. Are you still enjoying your cigars. How's the body healing after your unfortunate mishap a while ago? Glad to see other Forum members have touched base with my projects over the years as you say. My aim was to benefit other members, and help enjoy their Mustang ownership as well. Regards the front bar repair - yes, the amount of force needed to move the channel back out was crazy. To be more accurate though, my mechanic told me he used a 20 ton press. He did not give me an accurate force measurement needed to move the channel back out. That would be interesting. I suspect that the channel bar assembly was designed to let the bar crumple and move in, not go back out the other way. I could be wrong there, but it shows that the back force pressure greatly exceeds the push in collapse force pressure. Therein lies the clue. In any case, my experiment and results, gives Forum members a way out of trouble if this situation happens to them with their '73s. I don't believe you can buy new front bars or bar channel assemblies still for '73s. So all the best for now guys, and hope to catch up not before too long. Greg
  10. Hi Tim, Thanks for your reply and good to hear from you too. Yes, all is well with me thanks. I have been retired from Auto Spray painting now for 2 years now, and i am enjoying my retirement very much Hope you are keeping well too. Regards your above comment on buffing out the bar - well no, it will need to be repaired with flexible filler, primed/ puttied and then base coat color/ clear coated to finish off . I will end up refinishing the whole bar again. It is not twisted at all, as the impact was straight on the front face of the bar. The way the bar protrudes outwards by design, saved the rest of the body from getting damaged. (such as the hood or the front leading edge of the fender). By the way, the pics of the old bar channels, are not the original ones that are on my car. They are original used spares i bought in from America in case i needed a backup set. Cheers, mate!! Greg.
  11. Hi to All, It's been awhile since i was on, and last posted. Hope everyone is keeping well. In my absence, i don't know if my topic today has been discussed or dealt with. In any case i will tell my tale in the hope it will benefit others who own 1973 Mustangs only. Up until 2016, my front bar was in good original condition all 'round. In 2016, i had a tiny accident, and nudged the drivers side corner of my front bar into a street lamp pole while trying to do a three point turn on a narrow street. My speed was around 1 mile per hour on impact. This caused the corner of the bar to get pushed back close to 22 mm or 7/8 of an inch inwards. Most of you will know that the front bars of the '73s, are factory designed to telescope and crumple inwards for low impact collisions , by the use of compressed rubbers fused into box channel sections. My thinking on this damage was , if the bar bracket channel telescoped in, why can't it be pulled out again back to normal. This was a job i ended up putting off until now. I purchased a Come a long device to try and winch the bar bracket back out again. Last week i got a second opinion from a local repair shop. The owner though i may need something stronger to pull the channel back out. I took the car to him, and he experimented with a Porta Power unit, and a chain to tie down the back of the car to the ground. This did not work in pulling the channel back out. He then removed the entire bracket channel assembly, and with the help of a twenty ton shop press, succeeded to pull the channel back out the 7/8th of an inch displacement. Success!!! So, the bottom line is, if this happens to you on your '73 Stang, you will have to remove the entire bracket channel assemblies, and use a similar press to coax out the pushed in channel. The good news is that you can revive or repair a pushed in damaged channel/ channels, but it will take a crazy amount of force to achieve it with a big press. Forget Come a longs and Porta Power machines, as they won't do the job required. I will of course end up respraying the entire front bar again myself to finish off the job. Please see my photos. Many thanks, Greg.
  12. Hi there Sir! Lovely '73 Vert you have there! One thing though - your paint colour appears to be somewhat different from the factory Blue Glow colour. See examples below of a typical Blue Glow finish........................................ Pic 1. Typical Blue Glow Pic 2. Austin Vert's Mach 1 Blue Glow finish. Cheers, Greg.
  13. Hi there Sir, Yes, i did take a few good photos way back when the job was finished, but they are now on an old hard drive, and would be rather hard to find. The next best thing i can offer is a walk around video i shot back in 2017 of my Mustang (Goldie). It gives a look at the quarter panels on both sides in fairly good detail. You can of course, pause the vid to get a still image of the panels. The vid runs for about 5 minutes, but you can skip to the qtr panels part, by dialing in the 3.30 minute mark, and view from there onwards. Sorry, best i can do at short notice. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GQArL3B4VEc Thanks, Greg. :)
  14. Hi Jim, Yes, this topic has been dealt with at length a long time ago. As other Forum members have said, if a Quarter panel has been age and sun damaged, then refinishing is an option to get you out of trouble, and can bring decent results. However, this depends on how much damage/rot has occurred to the surface. This damage or rot can be from mild to wild. Light/ medium/ heavy. Age/ sun rot happened to me with my '73 white interior Convertible. In my case, it was what i would call, medium damage. As we know, when the surface is damaged, you get this chalky, brittle and crumbling away surface problem. Scraping and sanding back this damaged layer, so you end up exposing a stable and sound surface to refinish is the key answer here, as it is a waste of time painting over a crumbling unstable surface, that keeps breaking down. Your paint will have trouble adhering to the damaged surface, and in the long run won't last. If the qtr panel surface is heavy damaged, then a large amount of material will have to be removed before striking a sound substrate. This can be impractical in some cases, and it can be hard to achieve a good looking finished painted panel, even though you are shooting texture coating paints. If you have light to medium damage, the texture coating can bring fairly successful looking results. I could go into various types and brands of texture coatings but it would take forever to cover this side of it. Also, in refinishing the panels, getting the gloss level and the color match just right, can be tricky. If you miss out here, the end result can look very cheap and average. In my case, i gave up on the refinish approach, and decided to have the qtr panels recovered with a cream vinyl to match the color and appearance of my original seats and new front door cards.I went to a pro trimmer to have this done, and paid around $300 for labor and materials. The end result was stunning, and looked first class. What sadens me, is that Ford did not do this in the first place when the car was manufactured. Cheap and nasty i say. :chin: Cougar, being an upmarket Mustang, offered better standard and quality of trim. Hope that helps, Greg. :) (Pro Painter)
  15. Hi there again, Understand what you have said here, but you did not mention if the car is going to be baked when it comes off the gun and flashes off. There is obviously a big difference in much faster drying times and curing times if the car gets baked after spraying, compared to just letting the finish air dry of the gun. Forced infa red drying method is faster again than the normal baking method. You won't have any trouble if you let it cure out for a month as you say you will end up doing, baked or unbaked. Hope it all goes well for you, Greg. :)
  16. Hi to all, Just wanted to pass on some good useful info on caring for your chrome, and thus, extending the life of the finish. As some of the Forum members might know, i have spent the last 43 years as a pro Auto Spray Painter, and over that time have run into a lot of products and methods for helping to protect any chrome finish, and help extend the life of the finish before it starts to break down and fail. I will say from the start, that i have never been in the chroming business, and therefore, don't have the advanced technical knowledge of all the ins and outs of chroming. I will say however, that i am aware, that over the last few decades, the quality of chroming finishes has fallen off badly compared to the quality of say chrome finishes back in the Fifties decade for example. Fifties chrome would just keep on going and going if looked after properly. The better the quality of the chrome finish, the longer life you will get out of the product. Good quality chrome finishes can still be found today, but are harder to come across, and will cost a lot more as well. Given that is the situation today, you can still try and get good quality chrome, and then make sure you look after it to prolong its life. Like any paint finish, the bad enemies that attack and break down the chrome are mainly pollutants, and ultra violet radiation from the sun. Pollutants can be atmospheric types such as jet plane fallout, car exhaust fallout, etc. Road grime is full of chemicals, oils etc that can attack and break down the finish fast. A bad pollutant is also brake pad dust from disc and drum brakes. Washing your car on a regular basis, and using a cheap phosphate type detergent can over time help to break down the chrome finish as well. Dust and dirt can scratch and ruin a chrome finish too, and lead to a faster breakdown. Most town water supplies have harsh chemicals in them as well, and will attack chrome finishes too. So all of the above pollutants, end up shortening the life of any a chrome finish. What i have learnt over the years, that works for me, is a simple process of looking after chrome, and i have proven that this will extend the life of the finish. It will work for you as well. The more you baby your car,and maintain it the better it will look and last. We all know that. So with maintaining chrome, the Golden rule to remember, is that chrome LOVES CARNAUBA WAX. Chrome can never get enough Carnauba wax. The more you keep the wax up to it, the longer the finish will last. The wax coating is setting up an isolating barrier from pollutants, dirt, water and oxygen from attacking the finish. It's as simple as that. It goes without saying that if you end up with a coating of road dirt, dust , or grime, after a drive, then a quick water wash off before waxing is the thing to do, so as not to end up scratching the chrome finish. Product wise, you can use a good quality Carnauba paste or cream, but i love to use products like spray Carnauba wax detailers from squirt bottles, as you can easily spray the wheels all over with the product, and then microfiber the chrome off and not get any white residual powder in any cracks or crevices. Avoid using newer non Carnauba synthetic wax products as i feel they don't offer the same protection as what Carnauba wax does. Finally, go and buy a decent barrel type house duster, and have it at the ready in your garage. The secret is to go to the trouble of quickly dusting off your chrome wheels EVERY TIME YOU COME BACK AFTER A DRIVE. This helps to remove the brake pad dust from the surface, and reduce the risk of brake dust eating into the chrome finish. Dusting off wheels after every drive, and keeping up a generous wax coating on the chrome will ensure you will get an extended life out of your chrome. Many thanks, Greg. :)
  17. Hi jowens, A good question you ask, but what would be the reason you would think that there may be issues with paint curing or drying times, in relation to applying decals? Would you be concerned about any adhesion issues with the decals, or would you be concerned about the decals damaging the freshly painted surface for example? The short answers are firstly, in relation to potential adhesion issues, any new or fresh paint film needs to be DRY, but not strictly cured to achieve a good surface for the decal to bond strongly to. Secondly, with regards to decals damaging freshly painted panels, then that's different, because the longer the new paint has a chance to cure properly, the less potential damage it will render to the newly painted and presented paint finish.They are the basic rules. Going deeper into what i have said above, let's look at adhesion issues. Today's paint shops mainly refinish with 2 pack paints. The finishing top coats are 2 pack, be it clear coat or solid color. Some shops are still using Acrylic Lacquer to refinish their cars. They are in a minority. When it comes to proper drying and curing times for these paints, there are variations involved to consider. With 2 pack paints, some paint companies make products that can be air dried and air cured, as well as being optionally baked as well. While others offer spray and bake only top coats. In any case, be it air dry or baking after the paint comes off the gun, certain time must pass to call the newly applied paint finish DRY. Proper solvent release is the key issue here. In summertime conditions, and with 2 pack paints i would say leave the newly painted panels go for around a day if baked off the gun, and two days if air dried off the gun to call it dry. With winter conditions, double those times for air dry off the gun only. Regards Lacquer, you can only air dry. It's a deceptive paint, because it appears to be dry a few hours off the gun. But because it takes much longer for the solvents to be released out of the entire paint layers, longer drying times apply.In Summertime i would let the new paint dry for around two days to call it dry. In Winter, i would say four days to call it properly dry. Also, don't forget how many coats of paint the painter applies, will play a part in drying times as well. When it comes to so called curing of these paints, the longer time you can give a paint to cure, the better off you will be in general terms for many reasons. But as i said, the curing side of the new paint won't play any real part in relation to getting good adhesion results. A well cleaned surface is your best buddy for a good decal grip. A light application of wax and grease remover is a good plan to make sure the surface is clean. Pro decal guys use soapy water to help apply the decals properly anyway. Lastly, in regards fresh paint being damaged by too early decal application. This is or can be a reality. The glues used on the backs of decals are chemical by nature, and can be stringent and aggressive, and so can chemically etch into a fresh paint finish.The general rule here is whether you are using 2 pack or Lacquer paints, or you are baking or air drying your painted panels, the longer you leave the freshly painted panels to cure out, the better, an the less chance you will have of damaging the paint film.With 2 pack top coats, i would give a curing window of a week minimum if baked, and four weeks if air dried only. With lacquer, i would give a curing window minimum of one month before applying decals. Also, if you leave the freshly painted car or panels out in the sun all day for a few days, then this can greatly accelerate the curing process of any paint, and so cut down the curing time of freshly painted panels. However, that all said, the etching damage that can occur, usually can be light sanded out, and then cut and polished away, as the etching effect usually only penetrates a little way into the paint films. Lastly, the best plan in general, is if you can, leave the new paint cure as long as you can, in relation to cutting and polishing the panels. This will help to avoid any sink back paint issues that may occur due to premature cutting and polishing, and not letting the new paint properly cure out. I say this because, it is better to get your cutting and polishing done and out of the way, before the decals are applied. To apply the decals first before cutting and polishing can bring on potential problems of damaging the newly applied decals. Hope that all makes sense and helps. :) Greg (Pro Painter)
  18. Looking great. Glad it all went well for you Sir.
  19. Hi To All, Thought i would jump in on this one. When you look at the seats set up for the 1,2,3 Mustangs back in those days, it was very crude and basic. For example, the seat travel forward and backwards did not really cater for tall guys, and as far as going all the way back, still did not provide enough leg room. The seat upright did not have any adjustment to it, which would have made a big difference to overall comfort. Tilt steering helped to some degree, but was not the full answer. Also, the seats did not offer any height or tilt adjustments to them. This would have helped as well to overall driving comfort. Electric/ power seats were available in the Cougar range as options i believe but not for 1,2,3 Mustangs. I don't know if the Cougar power seat tracks offered enough back slide travel, tilt travel, or up and down travel. In any case, i am not a tall guy, but in my '73 Convertible, i found the back slide travel not enough when fully set back as far as it could go. I got around this problem very successfully by buying a set of seat frame extensions that bolt on easily to my existing seat frame legs. Year one Company in America sells them for a modest price. I installed them and they solved my leg room problem. These track extenders will solve leg room issues mainly, but if you have height or seat upright, tilting forward or backward issues, you may have to upgrade your front seating to more modern seats that offer all these adjustments. Lastly, a few years ago, i invented and installed a footrest for our 1,2,3 Mustangs. This footrest has provided me with extra driving comfort and control, and has made a world of difference to my overall driving experience. I mentioned it here in this topic, because it may provide help in relation to finding a better seat setup experience. It certainly did for me. Here is a link to my old post on this subject. https://www.7173mustangs.com/thread-austin-vert-invents-a-footrest-for-71-73-mustangs?highlight=foot+rest Here is a link to the extension brackets product for sale. https://www.yearone.com/Product/PartSearchResult/SB246/ Hope that helps. Greg. :)
  20. Hi to all, When panels are presented to a painter on a vertical or flipped over plane, they still have the ability of attracting dirt particles as such, but the prospect of contamination is somewhat reduced. No matter how the panel is presented, the painting environment plays the biggest part in dirt contam issues. Also, i was going to mention the semi gloss/ low sheen clear option, and since it's been raised, i'll talk about it now. Some painters like to choose this option to paint over a black base coat. Again, you can choose between a 2 Pack or a Lacquer paint for the clear. In my opinion, i see no real advantage in going this way. This is because, a low sheen clear finish will end up being just as sensitive to damage and wax problems just as straight black finish will be. The same rules will apply to contamination problems with the clear finish as it does with the straight black finish. This means that there is no real gain in using a clear paint to finish the panel. Clears will weather or break down faster than solid colors due to UV exposure. As well - Hi David. You raise a good point about reproducing or copying the original factory finishes, and i would agree with you here. However, there is one thing to think about, and that is if you still have the original factory finish on any panel you own now, be it full gloss color or a satin/mat, the aging process/wear and tear, over 40 years or so, will change the appearance of any paint as it breaks down over time. Take my '73 Mustang. It still has 3/4 of the car in original factory Gold Glow color. Thanks to my car being babied all its life the paint is still in pristine condition. However, it has suffered from color or pigment fading over time, and has become somewhat lighter in color appearance. Also, our 123 Mustangs were factory shot in Mono enamels. The metallic paint colors back then were a mixture of aluminium flakes and pigments and clear in the one tin. Clear coat/base coat paint systems were not around in the earlier Seventies. Pigments have changed as well, and that makes it very hard to match the original look. With all mono metallic paints of the day, they don't like being cut and polished or waxed at all, as the naked aluminium flakes are always exposed on the surface. You will see this when you go to wax a mono paint, as the ali sheds straight onto your white cotton application rag, producing a dark grey residue on the rag.So cutting and polishing a mono metallic enamel finish over time will change the appearance of that paint as well. I spent around 12 hours or more trying to color match my Gold Glow color, and could never end up getting it to perfectly 3 way angle match my original factory color as it presents today. Greg. :)
  21. Hi Joe, Being a professional auto spray painter, i can offer a wealth of advice on this topic. As i recall, i am sure i have posted in the past a good amount of tips and feedback on this topic, and the guys who have just posted back to you have covered a lot of good points and help. Just two things spring to mind from me worth mentioning. First, satin or low gloss black would be the best way to go. Gloss black was never the original finish, but a lot of guys choose it because they personally like the look of it. That's a personal choice thing of course. Gloss finish also is easier to spray and finish work with from a spray painters point of view, and is far easier to maintain than a typical satin black finished panel. With gloss, you end up with no edge lines if you lay down a base coat/ clear coat application, which can be colored sanded and cut and polished later. However, satin black finishes are hard to maintain and keep looking good over time.They have a low tolerance to being touched or handled without being damaged. Waxing can bring on a shiney look, which is very hard to get rid of, and should be avoided. However, i have discovered an Australian made wax product that can be used all day without producing and gloss issues for any mat or satin finishes. It's called Bowden's Lazy Wax. It's the only product i know of that does not gloss up flat or satin blacks. It really is fantastic. Second, i would recommend using Acrylic Lacquer satin black paint over 2K or two pack satin black if you are going the satin black way. 2K black is a more harder, durable paint finish over Lacquer, but the problem is that when you are spraying the 2k on you will 99% sure end up getting nibs or dirt particles in the finish as you apply the paint. When you do, the only way to remedy this is to let the paint dry, then block sand the nibs out, and then refinish the panel again.The problem is here, that when you respray the panel again, you will more than likely get fresh dirt in the job no matter. For the guys that can honestly say they have ended up with a completely nib free 2K satin finish off the gun, then all i can say is they have been very lucky to achieve that. However, when you shoot in Lacquer, you can sand and remove nibs or dirt on the fly, or as you are applying the paint. A coat of Lacquer can be dry or wet colored sanded around five to ten minutes after applying it. This means that you end up with a total dirt free satin finish without risking a crazy overloaded paint buildup.This is what i did on my '73 Nasa hood, and i ended up with a top looking, completely dirt free finish. I shot the hood about 5 years ago,and it still looks great today. Hope that helps, Greg. :)
  22. Hi Tony, Hope they work OK for you. Don't forget to try and do a test drill out for both ends of the bellows in panel steel first to check on the holding power of the bellows to the steel panels. When i drilled out my car following my given hole diameter measurements, i found one hole tended to let the bellow ease it's way out from opening the door several times.This would have been caused by one of the bellow ends being a slightly different size due to ageing and shrinking issues maybe. To rectify and get around this problem, i had to end up using a urathane adhesive like Sikaflex to hard glue the bellow into the door.That worked very well, and solved the problem. You may find through trial and error testing, that choosing a slightly smaller diameter hole drill, will be to your advantage giving you more bellow gripping or holding power. UPDATE. Sorry Tony, I forgot to mention that i found, and you should also find very small factory punch spike position dimples in the door skin and the pillar skin that show you where to drill your holes for the bellows. Look hard and you should find them. Many thanks, Greg. :)
  23. Hi there Sir, Thanks for your kind feedback, and glad you like the old girl! Yes, i do like to keep her clean, and i never wash the car with a garden hose or bucket would you believe. Many thanks, Greg. :)
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