Power Mirror Tutorial by Austin Vert


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Hi and welcome. OK, a change of pace here of sorts. If you have come this far with the project,and it's going pretty well for you, then congratulations on a job well done and keep up the good work. In this tutorial, i look into doing up and spray painting the two complete mirror housings as well as installing the rubber door bellows for the wiring to connect up with the car body. First to the painting. Here's the big question first up. DO I SPRAY PAINT THE MIRRORS, OR DO I PAY SOMEONE ELSE TO DO THAT FOR ME? Well i guess only you can answer that one, as it's going to depend mainly on your own skill set regards spray painting. My tutorials will be going out to worldwide circulation, but in regards the '71'73 Mustang Forum, i am aware that there are a real mixed assortment of guys or even gals who can and do spray painting themselves. I'm a pro spray painter myself, so doing something like this is a walk in the park for me, but not for others maybe. I guess at the end of the day, you will make up your own mind on whether you will do this work yourself or get someone else to do it for you.


That said, i won't go into too much detail here regards the paint job, but just pass on some basic helpful tips for all to take into account. Firstly, the primer coat used on the repro mirror bodies is pretty good in a way, but from my point of view, it's too thin on. At a pinch, you could just dry scuff the primer with say 800 wet and dry paper to get your adhesion happening, and then move in with your base coat and then use a clear coat 2 pack system.(a solid 2 pack enamel if you own a solid colored Mustang). But you really need to sand down the existing primer well,with say 240 wet and dry, the apply about three good coats of 2 pack primer over the mirror bodies and pedistal base. That will give you a much better quality finished result, and better looking too. So yes, then you guide coat the primer, and then wet sand it down with 800 wet and dry paper. Then you move in with the color base coats or top coat clear to finish off. Finish, by buffing and polishing out any dirt that's gone into the job. You will also need to spray paint all the gal steel locking plates in a satin black color, to prevent any rusting that may occur later on. I chose to use a 2 pack satin black paint for good wear and durability factor. If you will be painting these parts yourself, i recommend using a light coat of etch primer on the bare steel first, followed by a 2 pack primer, followed by the 2 pack satin black to finish off. That approach should give good durability to the parts for wear and tear. Powder coating is another option for you to go with. That's your choice. You will notice that i have chosen not to purposely paint any aluminium parts. I intend to leave them alone because i want maximum slippage with adjustment of the parts when i do the mirror installs.If the parts were all painted up before assembly, i felt that would create drag or friction problems with the parts rubbing up against each other, thus reducing the ability to move them around on each other. Anyway, the raw aluminium won't corrode in this application - it's not an issue. However, it is my intention to be masking off the motors later on when they will be finally installed into the housings, and spraying some mat black lacquer into the housings last.

After you have sprayed the mirror bodies,and given them about 2 days to air dry out and start curing out, you can move in and paint the inside of the mirror bodies in a 2 Pack satin or mat black.What's needed here is to start by using 1/4 inch fineline masking tape, and on the drivers side mirror body, come in from the edge about 15mm / 5/8 inch, and lay down a line of the tape running paralell to the edge perimeter of the body.Try to be as neat as you can here as this line will show up in the finished product. Now back mask away from that tape line, and cover the whole of the outside of the mirror body with paper and tape. Next, dry scuff down the interior of the mirror housing with say, 1200 wet and dry sand paper so the black paint will stick properly. Now spray 2 decent coats of the 2 Pack satin black to the inside of both mirror bodies, and let dry for a day or so. When you mask off the passengers side body with the fine line tape, come in from the edge about 20mm / 3/4 inch as the mirror glass sits further back into the body. We paint the inside black to give the final product a good look in regards being able to peek in and see what's behind the mirror glass between the edge of the glass and the mirror body all the way around. So that's the mirror bodies all painted and ready for the install later on.

When it comes to getting a good color match to your present car, you may be lucky enough to have some matched paint left over from a previous spray job. That's great if you do, but if you're doing this job at home for example, color matching could be a hassle for you. If that's the case, then drive your Mustang to a good spray shop and get them to make up and match some color for you to match your car's present color. If they are a good pro shop they will be able to do this for you for a reasonable price. If they can't forget them and move onto another paint shop who can do it for you. I know the Mustang colors are hard to match in a way, but doable at the end of the day.

Another way to look at it is if you do all the spray work your self, you save well on the labor costs. The material cost you will have to bare if you don't already have the paint at home to work with. Some would argue then, that for a small job like this one is, it'd better to just go out and pay a shop to do both mirrors, start to finish. So good luck which ever way you end up going. Also, don't forget i'm on the Forum to help any members with technical Spray painting advice they may be needing.


Now let's talk about the door rubbers. Wires from the power mirrors and door switch, will have to be run back from both doors to the fuse box. Ford made and sold the correct size rubber door bellows back in '71-'73 for Mustangs to cater for the power window systems installed on some of the cars. These door rubbers were of a good thick practical size. Sadly, these original Ford door rubbers have not been re made or replicated to this day. I was very lucky to be able to find and buy a set on E bay recently. If you already own a Mustang with these original rubbers already installed, then that's great. If not, there is another way around the problem. There is an American parts company called Encore who sells used door rubbers for 1979-93 Fords. I have bought a set of these door rubbers, and the sizing is almost identical to the original Mustang ones. On that basis, i would recommend folk to buy them and make good use of them. If you hunt around, there are other door wiring connectors available out there of certain shapes and sizes, but i felt it would be better to stick with the original Ford concept as much as you can. I have included Encore on your shopping list as well. I used a Vernier gauge to measure the end throat sizes or diameters of the original and the Encore rubbers. I will give these measurements here. Ford originals........ Door end: 1 7/8 inches or 47mm. Pillar end: 1 1/4 or32mm. Encore used ...... Door end: 50mm or 2 inches. Pillar end: 42mm or 1 5/8 inches. If you are going to install a set of door rubbers for yourself, i have provided pics and measurements as a guide to where to drill out your holes, and what size drill bits you would be using. I was fortunate to own a '73 Mach 1 Mustang which has original Ford factory power windows installed in the car with the door rubbers. I took my location measurements from my original Ford setup as a guide. These measurements are as follows - Door hole: From bottom edge of top hinge to the center hole of rubber = 70mm or 2 3/4 inches and from vertical edge of door to center hole of rubber = 133mm or 5 1/4 inches. Pillar hole:From top of bottom hinge to edge of hole rubber = 60mm or 2 3/8 inches and from leading edge of pillar to edge of hole rubber = 20mm or 3/4 inch. But the good news is, that i discovered that Ford has provided little dimples marked out in the steel exactly where these holes should be drilled or positioned. Locate each dimple and drill accordingly. It's that easy.Just check that my measurements come in at the same as where the dimples are located.This hole layout applies for both sides of your car.


Sorry folks, but at this stage, you will be needing to remove both your doors to carry out this operation. Unbolt your doors from hinge to door. Leave all hinges on the pillars. Before removing, mark out around the hinge plates where they meet the doors. This will provide an accurate positioning guide when you come to put them back on again. Drill out the doors first. Now using your hole saw and cutting oil, low speed drill out the hole. If you are using the Encore rubbers, your hole saw diameter size will be 48mm or 1 7/8 inches. Ford oem rubbers will be 46mm or 1 13/16 inches.Now clean up the area, and do a trial fit. Feed the rubber in from the inside of the door back outwards. It should be a nice tight firm fit, and when you push/ pull the rubber when in position, it should not come out of the hole. If you find it does for any reason, then mix up some epoxy Araldite, and glue that rubber into the door so it will never come back out again. Next, we drill out the pillar rubbers. Locate the dimple marks and drill using a hole saw 42mm or 1 5/8 inches diameter for the Encore brand rubber and 32mm or 1 1/4 inches for the Ford Oem rubber. I have included the Ford OEM measurements as well here, because you may have found a set on E bay and bought them to use. Now that drill out on the pillars should capture and hold the rubbers to the pillars. Mine did. But if not, then use the glueing technique to permanately hold and capture the rubbers in the pillars as well. Lastly, with pencil brush and suitable paint, go around and touch up the edges of the holes you have drilled out. This will prevent rust from coming in the holes. Before pencil brushing, you would have carefully filed or sanded the edges down on all your holes you drilled to take away any rough edges off the metal. Once the drilling work is done, then leave your doors off and put them on stand by ready for the last part of the project which will be the final install.

We will talk about the final install in the next and last tutorial.

Many thanks,



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Hi and welcome. In this last tutorial, we will be going through the installation of the power mirrors into your mustang. This will take in wiring up, installing the mirrors, mirror switch, and carrying out some final tests.


Your two doors will be off the car at this stage.If you have not done so, remove the two door cards and all hardware from the doors.I find painter's stands the best way to support the doors which will be turned upside down, as seen in my photos. You will need to buy a washer of a particular size.It must have an outer diameter of 44mm or 1 3/4 inches, and an inner diameter of 25mm or 1 inch.This back up washer will get glued to the back of the door card hole, where the old mirror toggle lever was positioned, or went through.This hole is where the mirror switch plug and socket will be passing through.Using the epoxy glue. glue that washer into place. You may have to file away the inside of the washer as seen in my photos for the two aluminium tabs of the switch assembly to sit comfortably within that inner ring.Trial and error is your best bet here.Glue washer into place and wait half an hour before you attach the switch assembly onto the door card.This is done by lining up or positioning the switch onto the door card, and then pressing down firmly on the assembly from the front, and force bending the two aluminium tabs back down onto the metal washer.Make sure the two tabs are sitting as low as they can on that washer. That then, is your switch assembly in and done.

Next, we will assemble up the two mirrors and associated hardware and wiring.This process will be the final time we assemble up the whole mirrors. Here, you will be attaching the motors to the brackets, the brackets to the bodies,the back up plates to the motors, and the wiring coming off the motors and out of the bodies last. So install motors and brackets first, alighn up and tighten the bolts of the bracket. Check alighnment by using a square ended ruler placed on the front face of the upper brackets.This ruler check process replaces the rattle can plastic top test we did on the bracket alighnment before. Check for vertical and horizontal alighnments as you did with the rattle can top before.If you're happy with that alighnment, then place your neoprean packing washer on the back of the plastic mirror back up plate, and install that plate to the mirror motor.Now, take your screw driver and tighten up the three screws holding the motor onto the bracket. Alighn and adjust as necessary, so that you end up with equal gaping around the outer edge of the back up plate and the mouth of the mirror body.Leave the back up plates on the motors. Now we do the wiring.Use your red, yellow and blue 3mm or 1/8 wiring to match up with the same wiring on the T Bird motors.Cut lengths of 2 feet or 600 mm wiring of the three colors. The idea is to now use the black plastic wiring sheath and sleeve it over the three wires. Feed that up into the floor of the bodies and out the front of the bodies. Next, cut, splice and crimp the ends of the three wires from the motor and the 2 foot section you just fed through. Use the bullet connectors for all your connecting jobs.Now join the wires together matching the colors for the same colored wires. Now wrap the excess wiring into a small ball, and then using Velcro wrap, wrap up the wiring ball, and push it to the inner back cavity of the mirror housing or body.The Velcro idea is to stop any rattle noises of the connectors that may occur when driving around.So, coming out of the underside of the pedistal mirror bases, you should have a decent length of the plastic wire sheathing, and then more length of the three wires. Now pop the bullet connectors onto the ends of the three wires. Once done, that is the mirror assemblies finished. NOTE: On the passengers side mirror, you will be feeding the wires into the floor just before the foot plate of the bracket itself. You drilled out that hole before. It's important to locate that wiring away to the left side as it goes into the back of the housing, so as not to interfere with the back up plate when it swings up and down and from left to right with normal mirror operation. If it needs pinning down, then do so by glueing the plastic sheath to the face of the bracket.

The next step, is to mask up the mirror motors and bodies again, because we will be spray painting some mat black acrylic lacquer from a rattle can, into the mirror housings to hide any wires or parts of brackets that may be seen around the gap between the mirror glass and the mirror bodies.Do this, and un mask the tape and paper, and your done.We are now ready to install the mirror assemblies complete, to the out side of the two doors.One really important thing to mention here. Please do your best to use nut serts and matching screws for attaching the mirror bodies to your door skins. These nut serts give a really good strong grip for the bodies to hold onto. Drilling holes straight into the door skin metal, and then using self tapping screws just won't do the job properly, and will end up failing on you later on. Minimizing vibrations with a firm, strong grip of the mirror bodies to the doors is vital, and very important.PLEASE USE NUT SERTS if you have not already done so.So screw and attach the two bodies to the doors, feeding the wires through at the same time.Don't forget to use your base pedistal mounting plastic gaskets too.

Now we follow on with some more wiring jobs.Start by working on the two doors first.You will come to see that the way i have chosen to wire up the mirror project is to make the concept of removing and refitting and replacing parts as easy as possible. For example, lets say your mirror motor fails you and needs replacing. You will see that the way i wired up the mirror housings , you can remove the motor and disconnect the wiring from the housing without having to remove the whole mirror body off the car door. Also, lets say you want to paint the out side of your car door, and you want to remove the whole mirror assembly off the door. You can by disconnecting the wires located just inside the top of the door shell. Now we will wire up the drivers door first. The name of the game is to pin the wiring down to the inner surfaces of the door to avoid completely, the window glass from interfering with the wire at any stage. This is done by using heavy duty Velcro hook and loop tape. You don't use the hook and loop itself, but just cut a small strip of hook or loop and use that single piece to pin down the wiring to the metal skin where you want to. It's peel and stick.The wires coming into the top of the drivers door should end about where the top hinge bolts are located. The pigtail plug will be sitting in the door cavity opening where the old toggle lever and cables came into the door card.Give that pigtail plug and wire, some slack or play as you will need that slack when you come to link it up later when you are putting back your door card. Follow my wiring diagram to the letter when connecting any wires up.Using your insulated bullet connectors, make all your connections as per the wiring diagrams. Remember, the positive hot feed and negative fed wires will be 4mm or 3/16 wires,and so the terminal connectors will be for that size wire as well. Also, you will have a situation where two yellow wires will be joining up with one yellow wire.Two into one if you like. In this case, use 4mm or3/16 bullet connectors for this situation only. Now connect up the three wires that runs from the connectors located at the top hinge area, and join them up to the pigtail wires. Use zip ties to hold the wiring to the inner door shell walls. I will mention too at this stage that the pigtail plug has the numbers 1 to 8 stamped on the back of the plug itself for wiring identification. If you follow my wiring diagram, i have provided those numbers and what wire goes to where. By double checking the numbers stamped on the back of the plug and matching them up with my wiring instructions, you won't go wrong.

Now unroll the rest of the three yellow, red and blue wires, halve the total length, cut, and feed those wires out of the doors and into the two A pillars respectively. In the case of the passengers side, you can feed the wires through the hole you drilled, and up and into the kick plate area, into the cabin. For the drivers side, you should see a hole in the inner steel wall ,adjacent the hole you drilled out. Enlarge that hole with a rat tail file, and then feed the wires straight into the kick wall area as well. Connect these wires up to the correct wires back in the door cavities. (SEE YOUR WIRING DIAGRAMS PLEASE - REMEMBER, COLOR TO MATCH COLOR) Now connect and run your positive and negative wires from the pigtail wiring, and back into the drivers side A pillar, and under the dash.Using help from a friend or two, re install the two doors back on, making sure to feed up the slack wiring as you mount the doors back on the hinges. It's a good idea to have both doors positioned fairly close to the A pillars when carrying out this wiring up procedure. Position and bolt both doors on, and link up the two rubber bellows into the A pillars as well. Run the positive and negative wires under the dash and up to the fuse box. Run the red, yellow and blue wires from both sides under the dash and connect up under the dash with a location of your choosing. Leave some slack in these wires too. For the fuse, you can use a 10amp blade type fuse, and link it up to the fuse box. You will be looking for the ignition wire to tap into. The negative gets a tap into the dash chassis with a place of your choosing. The mirrors won't function until the ignition key is turned on. Tidy up any wiring issues you may have, and that's the job finished. If the wiring side of the project is too much for you, then get a sparky to come and do the final link up and the fuse box setup.

At this stage, you can fix the mirror glass onto the plastic back up plates. Make sure both surfaces are clean an dry.Next, attach and cover the entire back of the glass with the 3M double sided low profile auto tape. Using a very sharp razor blade, trim off all the excess unwanted tape from around the mirror edges. Now peel off the backing paper from the tape and very slowly and carefully, position and place the mirror glass onto the surface of the plastic mirror back up plate. Do this procedure for both mirrors.

You can also attach the chrome trim knob and bezel mirror switch dress trim on at this stage if you ended up buying these products for your switch. These products simply use a double sided tape to stick themselves onto position.

Lastly, you can replace your two door cards and all the hardware that came off with it. Connect the mirror switch to the pigtail plug and pop the door card back on. All we really need to do now is test the mirrors again for functionality and proper workings. This is where it pays to do a mock up test before in the project, as if any problems are now encountered, it's a major pain to try and rectify them at this stage. If all went well with the testing, then congratulations to you for getting the whole thing together for yourself as you have. I hope you enjoyed the project, and didn't encounter too many problems along the way, and i hope you will enjoy having and using power mirrors on you Mustang.:thankyouyellow::thankyouyellow::thankyouyellow::thankyouyellow::thankyouyellow:

Many thanks,



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Excellent, Greg, very nicely done, great attention to detail in your construction, drawings and documentation. You definitely raised the bar to a new height on this one.

Excellent, Greg, very nicely done, great attention to detail in your construction, drawings and documentation. You definitely raised the bar to a new height on this one.
Thanks Don,

It's very kind of you to say so, and i'm glad you like what i've come up with here. Yeah, i wanted to put the detail and the effort in to try and get it all right for folks to use the tutorials as a good source of reference, if they wanted to reproduce the power mirrors for themselves. I think i've done this, and people should be able to turn out a set for themselves if they want to. Sure, not cheap, and a lot of work involved, but if you really want them for your car, i think it's all worthwhile.

Let's be honest - you're not going to be able to just walk into a shop and buy the whole thing as a swap out are you? Until the day(if ever) that a company puts its money on the line and manufactures a complete swap out kit, then my invention, will fit the bill perfectly.::thumb::

Cheers mate,


I've gone through all of Greg's tutorials and his construction drawings and thanks to all of his hard work believe this is a relatively easy project that will provide a quality and long lasting solution to our drooping passenger-side mirrors. It also has the added benefit of using easy to find materials, which benefits both initial construction and replacements, if ever needed.

Some time ago I took my passenger mirror apart, broke out the mirror, tightened up the tension on the ball and socket, but knew it was a temporary fix. Although the mechanical remote on my driver-side mirror works, it's a little loose and on some road surfaces tends to vibrate. This brings up the question, why remote on driver's mirror only? I can easily roll down my window to adjust it, if only one mirror had remote it should have the passenger-side.

I fully intend to be able to easily adjust my mirrors, and more importantly, keep them in adjustment, by spring. It'll be great to be able to see what, or who, is alongside my fastback, especially the passenger side.

Hi Don,

Thanks for your positive feedback, and confirmation and belief in my system. Interesting how you would class the project as straight forward from your perspective - i see that as another positive .

You raise a good point about having an adjustable driver's side mirror but not the passengers. I agree with you here, and think it was all a bit silly at the end of the day. I'm not sure, but i believe it might have been the Pinto '74 that had an adjustable passenger's side mirror with a cable running from that mirror then under the dash, and had an adjustable toggle lever mounted on the dash before the driver. Anyway, the point is that the'71-'73 Mustangs missed out completely.

One other thing you mentioned about mirror vibration. Here's my total experience about this subject. As folks would know, i own a '73 Mach 1 and a '73 Convertible. The Mach 1's mirrors are factory original, and i bought and installed a new set of repro mirrors for the Vert a couple of years ago.

In both cases all the mirrors are in top condition. By that i mean, all the bodies are attached to the doors very firmly, properly, and very tightly, as tight as they could ever be. The mirror back up plates are tight and secure, with no movement, sagging, play, or wobbles. That's all very good. But what i have noticed driving around in the two cars over the last couple of years, was the driver's mirror has a tendency to slightly vibrate on occasions. It's not too bad a thing but it's there. The passenger's side mirrors have more of a tendency to vibrate randomly than the driver's mirror does. In my opinion, there is nothing i can do to rectify this problem. I put the problem down to a few things.

With both my cars,(automatics) i have a lumpy idle, and when pulled up at the stop lights, the whole car body shakes and vibrates noticeably.This vibration is transferred to the door mirror bodies, and they shake as well, causing a small degree of mirror glass vibration. When you accelerate away or you are driving around at different speeds, the vibration thing comes and goes randomly, according to motor revs or driving speeds, or how bumpy the road you are driving on is. This vibration transfer coming from the car body and into the mirror bodies, is something you won't beat. It's just the nature of these older designed cars.

Also, i have a high powered stereo system in my Vert,and i have noticed the passenger's side mirror glass vibrate sometimes when i turn up the music,and play it loud with a lot of bass present. It vibrates to the music drum or bass lines.So having said all that, i have road tested my new power mirror system, and have made very sure that the mirror bodies,the mirror back up plates, the glass, in fact all componets of the system are very, very tight with over engineered parts for extra strength. There is no slop, sag, play, movement or wobble in my system, but i still get that vibration problem as i have described above . Again i say that it's all to do with the overall design of these cars causing the mirrors to vibrate the way that they do. It's not the mirror assemblies themselves. In my case, i believe that i haven proven that to be true, and sadly there is not much i can do to solve that problem. The only thing that might help, would be to install a soft rubber gasket in between the plastic pedistal gasket and the door body. That might help reduce the vibration transfer coming into the mirror bodies. :chin:



I read it all and I´m impressed. This must be the most detailed tutorial on the internet!

It´s not for me, as I lack the skills, accuracy, patience and attention to detail to pull it off. Plus I´m all thumbs and I can´t cut a straight line.

But it´s a great invention that many members should be able to reproduce given the skills they have shown on other occasions.

Thanks Greg!!

Not to take anything away from Greg's great solution in coming up with a power mirror system for our cars, Don brings up a situation that is frankly damn annoying and that is vibrating and drooping passenger side mirror.

In the first post from Greg, I put forward my solution to improve right side viewing and that was a greatly enlarged convex mirror surface. My solution to the vibrating and drooping mirror was to use a dob of GOOP on the ball/socket, post, P 4 #35. This stopped the problem, but unfortunately stops any adjustment. As I'm the only driver of my car, I set it where I needed it. It's not a permanent fix, so t can be reset,

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