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My 1972 Mach 1 "Alice" - Engine Dress Up


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Well I figured I would get a project thread going for "Big Blue". And I figured I would start with the story of the car. So I mentioned it in my welcome thread that this car has been in the family since 1972. My dad and my uncle both went out shopping for cars, and while my uncle ordered a new 73 Mach 1, my dad opted for a 72 that was at the lot. Both of their cars were the Mach 1 with the 351 C, the biggest difference was year. (My uncle still has the 73 as well). Over the years it was my dads daily for a while so he had changed the torque convertor and rear end to something more suited for highway. Before long it turned into more of a weekend warrior, and became a bit of a garage queen. Over the years my brother and I helped my dad work on the car, repairing a cracked exhaust manifold, shocks(I remember crawling into the trunk to help change them), and a few other things over the years.

Now fast forward to 2020. My dad is getting older and doesnt have the drive to wrench on cars anymore, so decided to hand the keys for the Mach 1 over to me since I had got my last Subaru project out of the garage. (My dad also bought my uncles 1960 Thunderbird and my brother got that, so it worked out for him too) Now dont feel too bad for my dad, he wasnt without a Mustang long, he ended up getting a brand new 2020 Mustang with the 5.0 and is in love with it. 
(Dads New Toy)
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So now the Mach 1 is in its new home. It had sat for a bunch of years with only the odd trip around the block, so while it runs and drives, it needs some love. So that brings us to this thread, I thought I would document what I am doing to it. But lets start with a handful of pics before I get into the parts list. 

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Edited by MKSpeedlab
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So now some of the plans for the car. I would say the car is currently in decent condition, so my first goal is to just enjoy it and make it a really fun cruiser for now. The body work I will likely tackle in a year or 2 over a winter. So the first stage is going to involve a bunch of maintenance with a handful of fun things thrown in. As you can see, I already changed out the Sport hubcaps to a set of American Racing Shelby wheels but thats the first of many things.

Maintenance:
1:Going through all the braking system, the pedal is pretty soft right now, and one of the rear wheel cylinders was seized so basically doing a brake overhaul. Nothing crazy for parts since eventually I'll likely do some upgrades. But for now, new shoes, drums, wheel cylinders, calipers, pads, rotors, and some SS brake lines to go with it all. 
2: It has a couple small leaks, most notable seems to be the trans. Im guessing the torque convertor seal or something is leaking, but Im likely going to take this opportunity to pull the motor, refresh some seals in it, new water pump, oil pump, and seals/gaskets. And at the same time change the torque convertor to a TCS convertor that should be good for 2000-2200 stall. When the convertor is out we will also change the trans filter, and a couple seals in it as well. And then just new belts, hoses, fluids all around when it goes back in. 
3: Also lastly going to be swapping out the MSD pro billet dist for the original distributor with a pertronix kit inside it. The MSD works good with the Mallory box, but I just want it to look a little more period correct, and also make the original tach work. 

Performance:
1: I dont want to go through all this work and not have at least a little fun. So the main thing that Im going to be doing is changing the fuel system and going for a Holley Sniper EFI. While the Edelbrock carb is working, I have never been amazing at tuning them, and since my goal is a killer cruiser I thought the conversion to EFI would put me exactly where I want. Its going to be going with a Hyperfuel Retrofit pump which is internally regulated in the tank.
2: While making it run like a beast, I might as well make it sound like one too. So I have a set of Hooker comp headers that will be going on it after a little modification. Im going to be cutting off the 3 bolt flanges and adding V-bands to make it easier to work with. That will be connected to the exhaust on it right now which is a set of Dynomax Super Turbo's that my dad had put on years ago. They sound good and arent too loud/obnoxious so should be a nice combo. 
3: Suspension is also on the list. Some subframe connectors to help stiffen things up and while the motor is out Im also going to swap out the steering box and all the lines for a Redhead Steering Gear 12.7:1 box that should make it feel less land barge and more sports car. 
4: Also just going to go through and do little things here and there to make it more enjoyable. Likely going to make some seat track extensions, look into adding bluetooth or some sort of better audio solution. I have also gone through and updated a lot of lighting to LED to make things a bit easier to read when it gets dark. 

So thats the plan for now, Im hoping to take lots of pics and even maybe youtube videos for the project as it goes. So some more pics of the car and goodies for it.

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Again great car and backstory. Sounds like you have a good plan going. Is it originally a Q code or H code car? Are you thinking about doing a cam swap while you have the motor out? Might be something to think about given all the other goodies you are adding to get the most out of them. Also, you will not be disappointed in the 12:1 steering upgrade, it makes for a completely different driving experience. 

73 Grande H Code. Headman long tube headers, T-5 Transmission, 3.70 Traclok, Lowered 1" all around, Aussie 2v heads w/ 2.19 intake, 1.71 exhaust, screw in studs, full roller cam 608/612 lift 280/281 duration LSA 112, Quick Fuel 750 CFM double pumper, AirGap intake.

 

- Jason

 

 

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Its originally a Q code car. Im not going to lie, I thought about a cam swap but was trying not to just because Im trying not to get tooo carried away. Is there a reccomended cam for these?

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Nice car and some good plans. I look forward to watching your progress.

I went to a Comp 268 cam in my 2v Cleveland. It's got a slight chop, still pulls good vacuum and has great drivability.

[align=left]Jeff T.

 

When I die I want to die like grandpa, peacefully in my sleep... not screaming, like his passengers. [/align]

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Some quick observation son your projected upgrades.

Trans - Q-code automatics already have a 2500-ish stall converter, check that you still have it before spending money on a replacement. 

Distributor /Tach - factory tach can be made to work with CDI ignition, it just requires the MSD 8920 tach adapter. A nice stock looking upgrade is a Duraspark dizzy from a late 70's 351M/400/460 car or truck, with few mods. 

 

 

 

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My dad had gone to a lower stall (1200-1500) convertor and a 3:1 rear end since he was doing a lot of highway driving, so thats why Im going back up to a little higher stall. We dont have the original and I already had this one brand new from another project that never happened so thats why I was going to use it. 

We had also tried using one of the tach adaptors but never seemed to be able to get it to work. A friend of mine has a pertronix in his 65 Comet and really liked it so I figured we would give that a try. And from there if I still have problems I will likely either see if there is a problem with the tach, or go duraspark.

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Well I got off work a bit early today so figured I would get started on some of the stuff to prep for the EFI setup. As mentioned, I decided to go with the Hyperfuel Retrofit In-tank kit that they have. I like it because it has the regulator built in so I didnt need to worry about running any return lines from the Holley EFI. I didnt have a 4.5" hole saw,  but figured instead of just running out to grab one I would try and see if I could make it work with tin snips. And it worked perfect. Less mess inside the tank, and the cut itself turned out pretty much perfect. So I was able to get things in and ready before dropping in the pump hanger and finishing it up. Its a nice little kit and should work perfect for my goals. Once the old tank is out and this one can go in I may need to rotate the pump for clearance, but thats easy enough to do. But overall I am very happy with how it all turned out. 

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  • 2 weeks later...

Figured I would share a bit of an update. This past week/weekend I was able to get her running again with the new EFI setup, and was also able to install the brake parts as it needed a little love. First off though, I was able to get the new tank back in with the drop in fuel pump, although I had to cut an access panel for it to clear. Im going to be making a cover for it, but since the trunk pan isnt in mint condition I was ok with it. Plus it gives a nice way to be able to access it if I need to pull the pump or anything. Which was nice because I had to do some troubleshooting and would have had to otherwise drop the tank twice.

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But now everything has been sorted out, and I can vouch for Hyperfuel as their tech was awesome helping me troubleshoot. Which means the Holley Sniper EFI is up and running, and all thats left for it is to take it out for some drives to let it start learning.

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And I have to say that the pertronix was a big success as well. The original distributor is in with the Pertronix Ignitor 2 hiding under the cap and working perfect. I did have to redo the ends on my wires since they were originally for the other style cap, but that went pretty smooth. All thats left for the dist is to get the timing set and hook the vac advance back up. 

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So with that all sorted out we were able to tackle the brakes. It got new calipers, rotors, pads, drums, wheel cylinders, and shoes. One of the wheel cylinders was seized and looks like it popped a seal, and I think one of the calipers may have also been going the same route. So we got it all changed, and an even bigger plus was that the brake warning light went off while we were bleeding everything, so saved having to fiddle with the pin in the proportioning valve.  

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So all thats left for now is going to be doing a quick oil change, putting some new plugs in it, and she should be good to go. 

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  • 2 weeks later...

Well a few more little updates with the car. Part of things right now has been just enjoying driving it since all of the big stuff is done. So first off I got around to changing the plugs on it. My dad couldnt remember when the plugs were changed last, and they were definately looking a little dark. It got a set of new Accel copper core header plugs and for now I gapped them at .035" and timing is set to 16 degrees.
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It also made it into the exhaust shop to get the drivers side rear pipe rebent where it goes over the axle. The previous shop(15+ years ago) had dropped the pipe down too quick and it wound up hitting the shock so wanted to get this fixed before I replaced the shock. And I have the new Dayton springs ready to go in it, and just waiting for the KYB shocks to arrive before finally getting to work on the back again. Will be crawling under with some rust convertor paint and a steel brush when i do it to clean things up a little bit.
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Other than that just enjoyed taking it on its longest cruise yet(still not super far). With the fuel pump problems I had been having I didnt want to go too far in case the pump died again, but it seems to be running great and was a pleasure to take out on the highway. This weekend we may try and tackle the red head steering box, just need a friend to come help me get it in and bolted up. 
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But I think Im going to enjoy more drives like this.
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Also wanted to mention that work is progressing for the Clock Delete/Holley Sniper EFI mount. A friend is working on making it with his 3D printer. He did his first print but decided to change things up a little bit. Should be a really nice and inconspicuous way of mounting the little screen.
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Edited by MKSpeedlab
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  • 2 weeks later...

Well got a few more things done over the last couple days. Last weekend we pulled out the steering box and power steering pump/lines in order to replace the steering box and lines. I also took this opportunity to change the rubber in the rag joint to the newer polyurethane piece. So yesterday a couple friends came over to give a hand and we were able to get the new Red Head steering gear box back in, and hooked up the lines. Im still working on bleeding the air out of the system since Im sure the extra loop of hose over the export brace, and the factory cooler will make it a bit harder to get the air out. So hopefully after a few more cycles I will have all the air out and it will be good to go. Likely going to change the rear shocks while its up in the air. Its tough to see it but you can see the new box and freshly painted pump and everything in there.
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Between stuff I also figured I would get some newer more modern looking headlights for it. So I ordered this set of LED lights since they still have a bit of a classic look, but also seem to give much better performance. I still have to take it out at night to really test them out, but that has to wait till the power steering is finished being bled. 
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And then finally, the 3d printed piece that my friend made up to replace the original clock was printed out and done. So I got it everything back together and I am really happy how it turned out. I have a bit of extra wire coming out for now in case I want to slide the tuner up to get at the SD card, but otherwise it turned out exactly as I had hoped. 
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Great reviews and summary of the work that you have accomplished on your project. I have a 72 that I have been working on for awhile and still getting things done as I can. I am running new break lines from where I also switched all my drum brakes to disc. A little challenging but I am getting there. I have learned alot as I continue down this same adventure. Keep up the great work.

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21 hours ago, sr71kadena said:

Great reviews and summary of the work that you have accomplished on your project. I have a 72 that I have been working on for awhile and still getting things done as I can. I am running new break lines from where I also switched all my drum brakes to disc. A little challenging but I am getting there. I have learned alot as I continue down this same adventure. Keep up the great work.

Brake lines have always been one of my least favorite things when working on cars. But coverting to disc all around would be worth it. Ill definately do my best to keep the updates coming. 

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  • 4 weeks later...

Say... I heard there's another Big Blue in town. I'm having my lawyer send a cease & desist letter. 

Just f*ckin around; love the ride, good canvas to start with. Can't wait to see the progress on it! 

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On 9/8/2020 at 12:24 PM, BigBlue said:

Say... I heard there's another Big Blue in town. I'm having my lawyer send a cease & desist letter. 

Just f*ckin around; love the ride, good canvas to start with. Can't wait to see the progress on it! 

You can be the Big Blue in the US, I can be the Big Blue in Canada lol.

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  • 2 weeks later...
  • 2 weeks later...

Well I figured I would do a little update after getting a few more things done with the car as well as taking some time to enjoy it on a charity cruise. 

I think I mentioned the charity cruise is another thread, but it was a very cool time. It was mostly exotics, but a few older cars and met some really good people. And it was for Kids with Cancer so you cant really beat the cause. I will also throw a link to a short little video from the event. Started off rainy but the day cleared up and turned out awesome. Even got to take the big horse on the police obstacle course(which scared away a bunch of exotics worried about hitting a cone). 

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After that I realized the original alternator was getting a bit weak. Especially with the electric fuel pump, EFI, and likely more things to come. So after doing some research, I ended up going for a 3G alternator upgrade. Normally I would have gone for a 1 wire, but I do like how simple this was, and the parts availability if it ever dies. Tried to keep the wiring fairly inconspicuous, and may try to clean it up more over the winter.

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I also managed to come across someone local who was selling a radio that he had been running in his 73 Mustang, so I bought the radio along with trim piece for it. Also grabbed a set of tail lights he had, and he ended up throwing in a box of small little parts for the car which is awesome to have. But I not have AM and FM, which is nice because there arent many AM stations around. After a little bit of research it looks like the radio might have been from the later 70's, but it fits in perfect and all I ended up doing was trimming the little piece that comes down in front of the radio so it looked a little better. 

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I did some other stuff as well but didnt get pictures. I had to change the starter as the old one decided it was time for retirement. Which sadly left me seeing her come home on a flat deck since I was kinda stranded. But new starter went in no problems and works like a charm now. Im keeping the old and will likely get it rebuilt so I have it should I ever need. I also changed out the rear springs in the car. I ended up getting a set of the Dayton "Improved Handling" rear leafs which are supposed to measure at 138lb/in and 650lb load. I think they are basically the OE spec for the Mach 1 springs. And besides one of the eye bolts siezing in the sleeve and needing to be cut out, the install went really smooth. I also put in poly shackle bushings and the repro GT shackles, along with new ubolts and eye bolt so everything is basically new and working great. Other than that, an afternoon with a clay bar, some time with a polisher and she is looking shinier than ever. Just looking for more opportunities to take it out before the winter gets here.

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  • 2 months later...

Well since winter set in a little while ago, projects on the car have slowed down but not stopped. I finally got around to installing the new RCC Innovations volt guage, and besides wondering if i cooked it when I installed it, it looks great. Just not thinking, I had run a new wire to the positive side of it to provide the positive, but for some reason I completely spaced on also needing to run a new ground. So I remedied that but it seems to sit in the middle of the guage and bounce around a bit even though it should be up in the mid 14's according to my Sniper EFI display. I also started some more mods under the hood. I have been piecing together parts to build a 408 Stroker, but right now a lot of the parts are ones that can be bolted on to the current motor for some extra fun. I started with electric fans which are now mounted, but need to be wired to the Holley Sniper, which freed up a bunch of space now since there is no more big shroud or metal fan. And the parts that are going to be going on the motor are a set of Speedmaster 220cc heads, matching intake, along with a mix of goodies from Comp and ARP, and finally the Hooker headers that I got at the beginning of the year and had modified with Vbands instead of the 3bolt flange. I had also wanted a set of black finned valve covers like these, but these came up locally for cheap, and couldnt help but grab them. I also ordered a roller cam and lifters from Cam Research, the new bump stick will be 272int/280exh .520 lift and 112LSA. I just wanted something to make it a good cruiser for now so they said they were focusing more on torque than high rpm hp.  Should all make this thing a blast to drive. But now for some pics.

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Hi I was just looking at your build and noticed that you are using the same cylinder heads as me ( Speedmaster ) and I thought that I would share my experince with them so far ( I still have not started the engine yet ), first check for swarf, mine had a fair amount of swarf in the water passages that needed cleaning out, check your pushrod clearance as this might need releaving ( mine did ) more so if using uprated pushrods ( larger diameter ). 

 If you do not have the CNC'd heads you may need to clean casting flash from the ports, it's also worth CC'ing the chambers as well with the non CNC'd heads. If you got the model with the valves and springs included it is worth buying a set of hardend steel lash caps to go ontop of the valve stem as I beleve that the tips that the rockers touch are not hardend ( I have read about the valves mushrooming slightly on the tips with use ), the springs supplied are not very good ( I am only using them to bed in my cam ) and it is worth replacing them with something better, the same can be said for the caps and the collets.

One last thing on the heads it may pay to lap the valves as well to check that they are seating properly. I also have the same inlet you have got and I thought that I should mention that if you are going to use the electric oil pressure sender without a spacer you will need to check that you clearence for it to fit as it might hit the manifold on fitting.

I hope this advice is of some use.

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Speedmaster heads and valve train parts are junk. If you run those you will likely destroy a lot of your motor in a short amount of time. If you decide to keep the heads I would at the very least swap out the valves and springs. They are cheap Chinese junk. Speed master is  Procomp under a new name. Same cheap stuff different name.  

Kevin
1971 Mach 1

408C Stroker - C4 w/3,000 stall - 8.8" Rear w/3.73's - Disc brakes all way around.

 

 

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28 minutes ago, turtle5353 said:

Speedmaster heads and valve train parts are junk. If you run those you will likely destroy a lot of your motor in a short amount of time. If you decide to keep the heads I would at the very least swap out the valves and springs. They are cheap Chinese junk. Speed master is  Procomp under a new name. Same cheap stuff different name.  

This is everything I've heard about them as well. Early heads had the valve seats falling out to boot. 

IMO, one needs to chuck all of the parts that come with them, or buy the bare heads and have them carefully inspected at a machine shop before investing anything. 

 

 

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Ya Im having them gone through. What I was told by the local shop is that Speedmaster has been working to improve the quality on their parts. He said he got to go down to see where they assemble them and the valves now appear to be sourced from Manley(although not their top of the line valves). I have no dilusions of them being amazing, but I just couldnt make something like the Trick Flows work right now. I had already planned on new springs to go with this cam likely, the heads are actually at the shop right now getting spring pressures tested because they agreed that the springs are usually on the soft side. So maybe I will get them to give me a price on better valves and check the seats while im at it. 

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  • 1 month later...

Well since the weather has been getting better I was able to start tackling some stuff again. For years the door panels had some quickly put together speaker grilles for speakers that got put in back in the 70's. The speakers were gone but the doors needed some new grilles. So I decided to put in a new set of speakers in the doors, put on some sound dampening, and fix up the door panels a little bit. For the speaker grills I talked to a friend with a 3D printer and we managed to come up with these. Hit them with some SEM paint and I am really happy with how everything turned out. I still need to figure out something to fix the cracks in the arm rests, but for now they are back on so I can work on other parts. But here are some pics of how it all turned out. 

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  • MKSpeedlab changed the title to My 1972 Mach 1 "Big Blue" - Speaker Grilles Installed
  • 2 months later...

Well after getting the Mustang going this spring, I noticed that the radiator had a little leak, so I decided it was time for an upgrade. I had already put in electric fans, but I redid the mounts to go with them, I also figured it was a good time to upgrade the trans cooler and just do a few other things on the car. It got a coat of paint under the hood that went with the Viking coilovers that went in. It also got the strut rod bushings replaced for the Opentracker Delrin Monoball bushings. The thermostat hadnt been done in years, so I pulled it and found out it was the wrong style thermostat. But in went a new 180 stat from Tmeyer, all new heater hoses, fresh coolant along with the new rad and trans cooler. The Radiator is from Northern Radiator and was pretty close to a direct bolt in, and the trans cooler is a 20500btu B&M Supercooler, and while I was at it a new battery hold down was put in. I decided to bend up some new upper radiator mounts to hold the new rad a little bit better and kept the original rubber insulators on them. Overall I am really happy with how it all turned out. Car is running great, staying cool, and now that the alignment is done its ready to hit the streets. 

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A cool random thing that helped me decide where to take it for an alignment was that the guy doing the alignment has a 69 Mustang that he drag races. It has a 540 BBF and looks/sounds pretty great. Im probably going to get him to go through a 9" center that I picked up to make sure the clutches are good before I try and throw it in the car. 

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  • MKSpeedlab changed the title to My 1972 Mach 1 "Alice" - Engine Dress Up

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