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Everything posted by jakosaur

  1. I did this a few weeks ago, but I thought I'd get up to date. I ground the rust and gunk off the underbody and put POR-15 on everything. It looks about 100% better under there. I need to put a coat of the rubber undercoating over the POR-15 now that it's dry, and then it's time to repair the rust holes in the body, then I finally get to start putting it all back together again! I just need the time, which has been hard to find lately.
  2. 73 convertible, H code 351C, FMX (swapping to AOD)
  3. Last Friday, I removed all the remaining things under the back of the car. I had to remove the rear bumper and valence in order to get the gas tank out. Took about 4 hours to get the tank out, and what should I find but perfect paint. It didn't need to be removed after all. Now I'm spending a hundred bucks replacing all the hardware and software from the tank, bumper, and valence for no reason. Oh well. The last thing to take out of the underside of the car is the transmission, which I've removed all hardware from, and it won't budge. I'm not sure what's holding it in, but it's stuck to the engine. I think I might lift it up tomorrow and start trying to wiggle it in the up position rather than down. All I can think of anyway. After that, it'll be a very long slog of removing the rust, cleaning, and painting the underside. Wish me luck!
  4. So I broke down and ordered the replacement panels for my left rear fender. Now I just need to learn how to weld sheet metal. I think I'll start tearing apart my old rusty charcoal grille that nobody wants to pay $20 for, and weld it back together a dozen times until I get it right. My friend will lend me his MIG, but I will need to get wire and gas. This will be fun... Any advice on what to put on the metal after welding? Should I slap on some POR-15 and then high-build primer?
  5. Finally pulled the rear end out, pulled the axles, out, and started cleaning it for repainting. Started draining the gas tank to drop it next. I just realized I should pull the exhaust first. I guess I'll do that next. I'm almost done tearing things apart, though!
  6. I'll go ahead and put in my $0.02. I have an Edelbrock Performer 600 CFM carburetor, Edelbrock Performer intake, Comp Cams 260H camshaft, and headers. It runs like a beast even with a lousy rear gear ratio and stupid transmission, and I love it. I am planning to upgrade the ignition, transmission, and rear end. If anything, I'd say the cam is a little weak for the rest of the setup, and if I ever get rich & bored I'll put in the next-level cam. Like others mentioned though, you can't look at single pieces and expect a major change. The whole picture is required, from the air cleaner to the exhaust tip & everything in between. Just a carb on with no other change will be an expensive few HP. Camshaft only would run like garbage, since it can't breathe enough (ask me how I know). You need to decide what you want, how much you're willing to spend to get there, and make a few changes at once. I'll just say that the stock setup is made for emissions, so very mild replacements to carb, intake/exhaust manifolds, and camshaft will make a big difference. $0.02, you probably overpaid. Jake
  7. Yesterday I climbed into the trunk and found the other side of the rust holes, cleaned them up and primed them. I found a friend who would let me borrow his welder. I've never welded before, but I guess I better learn now. I'm looking at just getting the whole patch panels from NPD and cutting them down to what fits best, rather than trying to bend a piece of flat sheet into the right shape to match the corners of the fender well. Any thoughts?
  8. Welcome! That is a beautiful Mustang!
  9. I took apart my rear brakes, and worked on the bodywork. Once I got through the layers of paint, I found that it was much worse than I thought. The first two are either side of the driver’s side rear fender. The last one is Bondo between the door and the fender well. Turns out the previous owner wanted to get rid of the seam between the door and the fender, but used Bondo to do it. The paint all cracked under it. It also solves a mystery I noticed from the Marti report: the car came with the protection package, which should have included the chrome strip along the doors. There weren’t any holes in the door for mounting it, but there is a crack in the paint there. I’ll bet a silver dollar that there’s Bondo under those cracks. All told, I had a pretty disappointing day working on my car. Now I guess I need to buy more Bondo for my Bondo special. Jake
  10. Thanks for the suggestions, but honestly sucking the gas up a hose sounds less dangerous than an open gas tank and a battery. I’m also on a spending freeze at the moment, so I thought I’d use my brake bleeder to get the siphon stared and just fill 5 gallons at a time. My Taurus needs some gas, and my Harley will soon I hope. Thanks for the ideas though! Jake
  11. Thanks Mike! Very good description, I forgot about the vent! I took a look at everything else before I asked, but it’s good to know what’s there to avoid any surprises. Thanks again! Jake
  12. Hey everyone, I realized that in order to get a handle on the underbody corrosion in my car I’m going to have to drop the gas tank. Has anyone done that? I’m not sure where to begin aside from siphoning the gas out of it, which will take a while anyhow. How do you remove a 73 gas tank? Thanks, Jake
  13. +1. Babbitt is nonmagnetic and dull, aluminum should be shiny.
  14. Hey all, I got my Marti report last week! It turns out that Zelda isn't anything special. She's the most common setup of a '73 convertible, with no factory options. I no longer have any concerns about tearing her down and changing the rear end, transmission, and whatever else I feel like doing. There's plenty more red convertibles with white interiors and Clevelands where she came from.
  15. I made a mess and probably gave myself cancer. I also found out that the car has more cancer than I thought. I started by trying to clean the rear wheel wells, and it turned into using a wire wheel to get the junk off. That went straight to bare metal, so I went ahead and just knocked as much junk off as I could reach. I'll hit it with a primer when I get a chance I guess. What sucks is the rust at the bottom right in the picture. There's some sort of metal tab stamped into the body or frame, and it's very rusted, and the area around it is rusting too. I poked a hole through the well liner trying to knock the dirt off. I already knew the other side of the car was rusted, too. Does anyone know what that thing is?
  16. Just for the sake of argument, how much for the center bezel and the tachometer? Thanks, Jake
  17. How's the rear bumper? It looks good in the pic. Would it be at all reasonable to ship that to New Mexico? I also need a bottom trim piece for the grille. Thanks, Jake
  18. Nice job on the rear end, it looks great. I'll be doing that soon myself. Sorry about the bolts. When I took mine off a few weeks ago, I soaked them in PB Blaster for a few days, then they came right out. Just a thought. Good luck! Jake
  19. Removed the driveshaft, pulled the yoke off, still trying to fight out the rear U-joint, removed the leaf springs, working on taking off all the brake lines from the rear end. Removed the rear brake drums as well. Here's a question: the driveshaft is pretty rusted. If I knock the rust off and repaint, will I need to get it rebalanced? Thanks, Jake
  20. 10 years US Navy submarines, now I'm a QA engineer at Los Alamos National Laboratory. I help to make fun things out of plutonium. Anyone seen the new Mars rover? We helped build that Still trying to figure out how to build a time machine out of a DeLorean and some plutonium...
  21. Hello Tim, Thanks for the input. The reason I wanted to go with the Pertronix Ignitor III is for the multi-spark functionality. It's like getting an MSD box with the ignition. Jake
  22. Hey everyone, I thought I'd start a build thread, since I need to do some restoration on Zelda. The car right now: '73 convertible, red, white top & interior, 351C, Comp Cams 260H, Edelbrock Performer carb (freshly rebuilt last week), Hooker headers, dual exhaust, FMX, 1" drop in front, new stock height springs in rear, 2.79:1 gears in the rear end. The plan: AOD swap: have the transmission. That's it so far. 3.50:1 gears: have all the parts, just need to pull the third member (with the stock gears, I'd have to go 95 mph to use the overdrive) Electronic ignition: leaning towards the Pertronix Ignitor III, any opinions? Fixing the top motor: anyone rebuilt one before? The driver's seat: Frame is cracked. Again. The stock seats suck. Anyone done the TMI Pro Series seats? 3-point seat belts for the rear Painting the underbody, dash panels, and some other paint touch-up here and there
  23. 73 Red, white top, white interior (used to be anyway...), 351C, broken top motor, now it's just a permanent soft-top roof, working on replacing the FMX with an AOD
  24. Hi Ed, I'm in Los Alamos. I'm a beautiful drive away from East of Albuquerque by way of Madrid. Jake
  25. My story begins back when I was 15 and living in California: I was working as a machinist after school and summers, driving as an amateur circle track and kart racer, and I had just bought a 1988 Harley Sportster for $800 to restore. The guy I was working wanted an '88 Sportster to build into a drag bike, so he offered me a trade. He traded me his '73 Mustang convertible, which came on a trailer and in milk crates. I figured, since I couldn't drive it yet anyway, I'd take it and restore it. Figured $800 for a classic Mustang couldn't be that bad of a deal, right? The numbers-matching 351 Cleveland was in another machine shop with a guy who wanted $2000 just to tell me where it was. It was gutted on a shelf. $5000 later, the block was machined 0.010 over and the heads rebuilt. I still had to do the bulk of the assembly, but at least I got it home. I spent the next year and lost count of how many thousand dollars at Kragen Auto Parts and National Parts Depot (which was just down the road, pretty handy. They're a great Mustang parts supplier, if you haven't heard of them) putting the car back together. By the time I had my full driver's license, I had an awesome Mustang. Fast forward 30,000 miles, 4 moves, 2 kids and a Navy career later and she's a garage ornament. The summer sun in Cali and Charleston wore out the cheap paint job, and the Washington winters finished off the body work and electrical system. The convertible top motor is toast, the driver's seat frame is cracked, the chrome is pitting, the engine's rear main seal doesn't, and the rear end and torque converter are also leaking. With the move to high elevation here in New Mexico, the seals have fried out and the fuel system and carburetor need upgrading. It also doesn't help that some dumb 15-year-old did the last restoration on it. I bought an AOD from a Country Squire station wagon a few years ago, but haven't had time to put it in yet, but I'm trying to get back into the habit. Hoping to find some motivation here. I call the car Zelda, after F. Scott Fitzgerald's wife. She wasted all his time and money, ruined his writing career, and drove him to an early grave. Looking forward to meeting you all, Jake
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