72 hardtop Hcode "Geraldine" Build


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Active member
Oct 27, 2019
Reaction score
San Antonio, Texas
My Car
1972 hardtop 351c
Hello all,

This is Geraldine and her build thread.  My name is Lance, my wife Janet and I have always wanted a classic muscle car.  My wife decided to bite the bullet and spend some of her savings on a 72 Mustang hardtop 351C 2v (and who am I to argue :D ).  Her car her preference, hence the name “Geraldine”.  The idea is that we do the work that we can and hire out the rest.  We want this car to be our own.  Moreover, by “We” I mean she wants to be involved getting her hands dirty and learning all she can along the way.  It is cool seeing her researching and learning about the car and I like that we are doing this together.  I am a novice myself but I have never been afraid to try things.  So here we go!!


Geraldine showed 7044 miles when we got her.  We believe that is 207,044 miles. Over all the sheet metal is not too bad.  She has some dents and dings and the paint is pretty faded.  She has little to no rust that we have found.  The floor pans and the trunk pan look awesome!  We think she was garage kept and around the San Antonio, TX area her whole life.  There are some gaps in the timeline but we are trying to fill those in.  The driver’s side under the back window is the worst rust we have found so far...


The hood had a bow in it, but that just gave us an excuse to get a NASA hood and ram air. 

The overall plan as it sits right now is to get her mechanically sound and then start prepping for paint.

If I can get a warm fuzzy about it, we may pull the engine before we send her to paint and work on cleaning and freshening up the engine while the car is gone.  I have never done anything like that so we will have to see how that goes.

She starts easy, runs good, and has plenty of power.  The PO said, he was told the engine had been rebuilt at some point but he did not have any info.  However, he had receipts for work he had done.  New gas tank, rebuilt trans (FMX), new engine mounts and trans mount, new shocks front and rear, new springs in front, new lower arms and new bushings all thru the front end and steering, new rebuilt carb. 

This is a factory A/C car but all of the compressor hoses were cut out and the PO said it was like that when he got it.  He also removed the compressor when he was changing out the power steering pump.  The compressor is currently in a box in the trunk with the mounting brackets. Right next to the old carb.  I see a classic air system in our future.

Something I have noticed.  Cruising at highway speeds there is a surge happening.  I will most likely need help/advice figuring that one out… 

Over Thanksgiving we took advantage of CJ Pony Parts black Friday sales and saved just over $500.  Unfortunately that meant we spent over $1700.  Part of what we got was a new Steering wheel, Rear Spoiler, NASA Hood, and all of the ram air parts.

Here is a pic with the new spoiler and hood.  Let me tell you, putting that new hood on with just me and my small wife was not an easy task!!  She's a real trooper!


The rear leaf springs are very tired.  I have new springs waiting to go on.  The 9” diff is leaking so my plan is to pull the axel out as I change the springs and clean/paint the whole thing along with a thorough inspection.  It does not look like the pinion is leaking just the main gasket.  I am crossing my fingers that it is just that simple.


(Look at those beautiful floor pans.)

I does look like the rear end has been replaced at some point (appears a junkyard wrote “88K” on it) but I do not know how long ago that was.  The axel and springs have a very different patina then the rest of the car so I am thinking they swapped the whole thing as a complete assembly.  While I am doing an inspection, I will figure out what the gear ratio is.  I checked while I had it lifted and the tires spin opposite directions so I think it is just an open dif.

I have Monday off for MLKJ Day so I am starting in on the rear end this weekend.  I have watched some videos and it looks like getting the old bolts out of the leaf ends may prove to be difficult.  Wish me luck…



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Maybe just me lance, but I don’t see any pictures, congrats on the project. It will be fun getting dirty with the wife, it always makes any project better when you have someone with you. I live just north of Austin if you guys feel like meeting up some time. Tim

Good luck on your project!! Our project is a husband and wife team effort also. It is great bonding time for us, as life has gotten busy with raising little ones.

Lots of great folks on this site to help as you go along. Our project wouldn't be this far along without all the information available for reading and folks that participate on this great forum.

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Maybe just me lance, but I don’t see any pictures, congrats on the project. It will be fun getting dirty with the wife, it always makes any project better when you have someone with you. I live just north of Austin if you guys feel like meeting up some time.  Tim
Thanks for bringing the no pics thing to my attention.  I will have to move them someplace else and re-link them.  Thx.  We'll definitely have to meet up sometime.  I have now edited the pics and they should be showing up.  Please let me know if they are not.  

bonus pic of Geraldine:


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Congrats on your project, and you're darn lucky to have your wife wanting to be as invested in working on it. I didn't see pics either, so please try again, and keep us posted as you go. There is lots of help here if you get stumped too.


Thank you all!  I believe I have the images fixed now.  I am linking them from google photos and I could see them fine but no one else could.  I was using MS Edge to browse to google photos and copy the image address I needed and the n paste it into the forum.  What I have learned is that Edge does not copy the link correctly.  It only works correctly if I use Chrome (Made By Google) to copy the image address.  Any way I think I got it fixed.  Pease let me know if you still can't see my pics.  Thx.

I made use of the long weekend and pulled the rear end out or Geraldine.

As I don't have any history about when it was replaced or any service history, I wanted to do this sooner rather than later and I also have new leaf springs waiting to go back in.


The main gasket was leaking but there was no evidence that the pinion seal was bad.

I got the axle up on saw horses and pressure washed it to get rid of the majority of all the buildup.


When I started I could not read any of the markings as they were all full of gunk.

Once that was done I moved it indoors and started pulling it apart.

I apologize as I apparently didn't get any pics of it while I had it apart. 

I cleaned it all up.  Oil looked good and fresh.  I could not find any debris or any evidence of chipped gears.  In actuality it all looked pristine.  I got out the magnetic base and the dial gauge and went to work getting some measurements.

Highest measurement on runout was .0025"  and backlash was .009"

The build sheets say Geraldine came with a 9" 2.75:1 axle and Geraldine's build date is Sept of 71.


The date on the axle is late Oct of 71.  


I am assuming that 09/71 date is when she left the line so I think that proves this is not the original axle.  However, I think that does show it was pulled from a 72 mustang also.

The tags lists the same gear ratio and after counting I confirmed it is indeed still 2.75:1 gears installed.

I put the axle all back together on Sunday and gave the new gasket overnight to cure.  Monday morning I got out the wire wheels and an assortment of other similar tools and went to work on removing old paint and any grime the pressure washer missed.

Here is a pic after I got some primer on it.


And that is as far as I got.  Hope to have some more to post soon.



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Hi. It doesn't look like your images are getting the full URL. If you are using Google Photos to host your images, when you click on one you want to share, you should see some icons across the top right. The share icon (the 'acute angle') has the tool you want to use: 'Create link'.Hopefully that takes care of it for you.

I gave up on getting google photos to work.  I moved all of my pics to a different place and re-linked them.  Hopefully that does the job.

I do love green coupes! (I might be coloured a tad)

It's been said already, but you are extremely lucky to have a wife who wants to be part of the project.

Good luck to the both of you! Looking forward to read more about your progress!

Welcome from PA. Nice project and effort. Not bad for a novice using a dial indicator! What leaf springs/vendor did you purchase? Leaf springs and repair/build to my differential is on the to-do list. Got some 'growling' from the rear, better when the top is down, LOL

Welcome from PA.  Nice project and effort.  Not bad for a novice using a dial indicator!  What leaf springs/vendor did you purchase?  Leaf springs and repair/build to my differential is on the to-do list. Got some 'growling' from the rear,  better when the top is down, LOL
I almost bought springs online (CJ Pony Parts if I remember correctly) but the $150 shipping cost made me stop and wonder if I could get any local.   My daily driver is a Jeep Wrangler and I have a local Jeep shop that I trust (Bikini Offroad).  When I was in their shop I asked Tony the owner is he new of anyplace local where I could get quality springs.  He recommended ACE Spring Services here in San Antonio.  He said they were awesome and that's where he gets all of his springs for the older Jeeps that use leaf springs.  So that's where I got them.  They were about $50 more than what I found online and because I picked them up I still saved around $100.  I still ordered all of the new hardware online as I got free shipping on the small parts and they were cheaper than the local guy.  Hopefully I can get them and the rear axle reinstalled this weekend.  I'll get some pics of the painted axle before I start tomorrow.

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