A Little Padding

This week things look as though they have moved on quickly at Mustang Maniac, when in fact the process took a little under a couple of hours for the main project. What am I bangin’ on about? My new dash pad of course. Adam had some of these in stock, but he has pulled the stops out to get me in a Ford tooling dash pad, I have been spoilt. I saw the box and realised that the project was going to take a big leap today. Lots of pictures this time to make up for the previous weeks where I couldn’t take to many as I had my hands full.

The new metal part dash itself has been painted and as yet there is no further hints of the colour scheme inside. Me and Adam have had some long conversations and eventually sorted the colours out and the style. Some of it has been custom-made which have already arrived, but won’t be fitted just yet until all the adjustments have been done.

The Dash itself in place by two threaded studs, two in the middle and one on each end of the dash. The washers supplied are quite small so they were replaced with a larger set to spread the tension around a little more evenly.

The dash pad is not very heavy at all but care needs to be taken when fitting to make sure that the pad bolts don’t scratch the metal work. The pad is pushed over the upper supports of the dash to take the weight.

The two centre studs locate just above the radio space. a slight pull down on the pad to open it up a little allows it to slide over the top part of the metal dash. The two end studs will need to be pulled down slightly as well to locate into the holes.

The windscreen part of the dash will need to worked into place under the rubbers to make sure it lays flat. With the studs in place it’s a case of fit the washer and bolts and tighten them up to pull the dash into the metal dash itself. Do not over tighten the nuts.

That is basically it, the next part is to fit the demister vents, these are held in place by two clips each side which are sprung loaded. align the loose material from the dash over the holes for the vent and press into place.

dashpad18

The large hole in the centre is for the original speaker which I will fit. I am not bothered about a noisy sound system, I will have a v8 symphony at my beck and call. On top of all this there is a metal grille, the flutes each side direct the air to the screen. I have not had this colour coded just yet, so it’s still bare metal with only a coating of Gibbs Brand to stop it rusting. The grill was lightly pressed in place not all the way in just o give an idea of the look.

The Ford tooling part fitted like a glove, the before and after comparison.

dashpad16

Next on the list was the cowl to hood rubber seal, this is a simple clip in place with two screws each end on a bracket to hold the rubber up. Offer the strip up and apply a screw to hold it in place. Space out the rubber to the other bracket and make sure it’s even.

The clips have a little movement once in place but could damage the paint work if you are not careful. CLip them into place and add the other screw and tighten up.

cowltohoodseal7

Moving to the back of the car there needs to be a sealing strip to the trunk. This has two purposes, one for the rain, two for the fumes that could be vented back into the car. With the trunk in place and the gaps spot on Adam told me to mask up the location of the brackets on the truck. This would be top and sides on each bracket. Chris gave me a hand to undo the bolts and remove the bolts and flip the trunk onto a the ready-made work table.

The special weather strip adhesive is applied like a contact adhesive. The rubber can only go on one way which is a “c” shape looking at it from the end on. This should be fitted with the opening facing inside each of the contours. Adam advised to mask up the paint work before applying the glue. This will stop the mess getting onto the paint and save many careful hours of removing it without damage to the paint. I had my doubts as I was going to be careful.

A thin-film was added to the rubber and the paint and allowed to go tacky. Chris was holding as I was squeezing the tube onto the rubber and smoothing it out with as gloved finger. No matter how careful you are this stuff goes all over the place. Adam was right the masking tape was taking a bit of a battering at this point. Make sure the adhesive does not get inside the “c” or on the outside as this should be allowed to move to make the seal correctly. At this point as we were working quickly there was no time for the photo’s here. But the rubber was applied from the front to the back following the curves of the trunk. While we were sticking the two together we taped the corners down to stop them moving around until the glue had a chance to set a little.

It was at this point that I started the cowl to hood trim fitting while the glue set. It’s all about the forward planning! When the glue had set a little the masking tape was removed from the paint and re-applied to the corners again just to hold it in place. The rubber is longer than required by around six inches or so, so I cut the rubber as a dead butt fit and glue the ends together to form the seamless join.

While waiting again for the glue to go off again I fitted the door rubbers from a replacement pack.

doorrubbers

Last week I mentioned that I would get some pictures of the weather strip seal around the doors. So as promised here they are.

Next week I am not sure the plan of action, but the Trunk will go back on then mess around with the gaps again. The dash will need the glass to dash trim fitted. which will require some drilling! Slightly nervous about drilling so close to glass and on top of my new dash.

Share my Content

Some You Win…

I try to post on a Sunday evening so I can give an update on the work completed by Mustang Maniac during the week and the work I do at the weekends. The reason I haven’t posted is quite simple. Trying to catch-up on the huge amount of  I have taken and the huge amount to work the MM (Mustang Maniac) guys have done. Most of the photo work has been completed now and hopefully the delay will be worth it. Where do I start?

The first thing I noticed when  I turned up was the back of the car was sitting in a white primer where Terry had cleaned and seam sealed it up.

The back of the trunk is to get blown over of the Acapulco Blue when the car goes for the full paint job. In the mean time a couple of light undercoats of colour will be applied to the areas that you can’t paint once the rear quarter panels are welded in place, such as the chassis drop off points and the top of the rear arches that can be seen when you open up the trunk. The hinges I prepared last week were cleaned up and given a spray and hung up to dry.

The next part to be spotted was the upper cowl that had been fitted in place and welded to the lower cowl. The Black resin coated parts in black are now all welded in place and brazed as they should be. Tape was placed over the vents and masking paper placed in the vents to avoid any and dust and rubbish getting into the fresh paint. The paper will be pulled out at the time of fitting up the rest of the car.

As I wanted an export brace on the front of the car going from the fire wall to the shock towers this one was going to be fitted correctly. What I mean here is that the export brace was fitted to a thick piece of plate also welded onto the top of the fire wall to add the required strength. Many export braces fitter later in life are just bolted into the original shock tower bolt holes and the fire wall. Under load the firewall will bend and give which defeats the whole point of the export brace being fitted. The welding you see here is exactly how it was when they were first fitted, no neat seam all round welding, just the little lines of weld you see in the close up. The brace is only resting in place as its not needed at this point of the restoration.

When I arrived on Saturday Terry was competing the repair plate to the roof and quarter panel lead area. Yes you read that correctly – lead, not filler and welds as modern restorations will do for you, but this lucky little lady was going to get the forgotten art of leading and brazing the quarters in place. The filler and welding are not ideal and could blow through with damp and rust at a later date. The Common place to have the rust appear is at the top of the B pillar as the water runs down and sits at the back of the strengthening sections and so it will eventually rot. Welding and filler will be especially susceptible to the damp. Red oxide paint was applied to prevent any more rust. The replacement plates in this area are common and the secret is make sure the plate are lower than the rest of the roof in order for the lead to run into any holes and fill the cavity up with strength. It’s this attention to detail that sets these guys apart from everybody else.

Anyway, I was given my task to strip the doors down to find any of Adam’s nasty little surprises as he likes to call them. The door, oh yes the lovely left side drivers door. The stripper was applied to door and the first layers of paint was removed no problem. Then I spotted it – filler. Ok, the filler was to mend any cosmetic issues for paint, so I kept telling myself. So the door got more stripper and more scrapping. The filler patch got bigger and bigger until it was across three quarters of the door. I asked Terry to take a look who said “You have to get it all out to see what is behind it”. So the door got more stripper applied to loosen the filler, then more and more. The scrapping knife was lifting the filler out like a spread of butter until the next layer of filler needed to be softened. Now I was going through the stripper like you wouldn’t believe as the filler was soaking it all up. The breakthrough to the metal was a good moment to behold and I thought I had cracked it, but no. The filler was about half an inch thick in some places, then I found out why. The car has had a knock in the door. There was regular holes in the door skin to pull the dents back out again with a slide hammer. At this point Adam was called down to survey the damage. Then he said “all the filler has to come out to see the full damage”, that’s consistency. Two hours later the filler was all out. The door panel was now fully exposed and any pressure on the door and the door popped inwards as the metal was stretched beyond repair, the filler was holding it tight. If I had of known this then we would have replaced the skin in the first place on the outside of the door.

The door had to come of to strip the skin. Adam went and got a skin and brought it over “it’s your lucky day – it’s the last one.” The door was mounted and the skin was knocked away from the door by breaking the spot welds. The inside of the door would show the damage if any done to the structural part of the door. The skin was popped off a little while later being careful as they were trying not wanting to damage the door frame. The skin was lifted off and with the inside exposed we could see the heavy rust at the bottom of the door and the thin metal about to break away. Not good. The side strengthening bar part of the frame had been bent on the initial impact and had not been straightened out at the time. Even worse. The arrows in the pictures show the areas of concern, the bent frame and rust holes.

In case you are wondering how much came out of the door? This much.

rubbish

The decision was made the door could not be salvaged with the amount of rust inside and the damaged bar. Yes, of course they could fabricate new parts and weld in place, but the man hours would out way the cost of the door. Terry went and got a new door. I had spots before my eyes or was it “£” signs, i’m not sure now??? Terry then offered up the door and fitted it along the B pillar and the sills. Adjustments had to be made with the door catch to make it shut correctly.

So to sum up:

1 x 5ltr od paint stripper = £30

8 hours stripping time

1 x door skin = £120

Terry’s time – a lot!

1 x new door = £400

1 x scrap cart full of my nice clean, paint free, bent door skin that has more bullet holes than Al Capone’s getaway car! One man was not impressed. BUT, some you win – some you loose, the original drivers door was a write off and that is the chance you take with old cars unless you know the history. I soon got over it once I had seen the new door in place. Oh, yeah it looked good. The other door Adam stripped down for me, that one was fine and OK to prep for paint. I think he was feeling sorry for me at this point, I did give him his door skin back though!! AND it only took him an hour or so to get this far.

door10

The door surround was cleaned up while Terry was prepping the door for fitting, this part of the bodywork came up pretty clean all round the inside and I was pleased with the results.

The door fitted with the clean pillar and inner door frame cleaned up looks amazing.

It was a silly long day and I would a special thanks to Terry, Adam & Frank for helping me out. I had a good laugh and it was great to see the new metal on the car and some colour.

I hope the wait for the post was worth it, it was for me. 🙂

Share my Content

New Paint Colour Revealed

The weekend still arrived slower than ever after a Bank Holiday at the beginning of the week. I was excited to get down to Mustang Maniac to see what had been done to my car. The lower cowl was going to be replaced as it had rotted through and that piece of work was known about. With the cowl off the guys could see the fire wall and the back of the dash clearly in daylight. On full inspection of the dash they could see it had gone a little thin underneath and rusted pretty badly all along the inside. A discussion was had to either replace the whole dash, or weld parts onto the old dash. This would mean shaping metal and replacing the radio slot that is always butchered on the classic cars. The decision was made to replace the complete dash, not a cheap option but it was going to be worth it in the long run. As ever Adam had a full dash in stock and was fitted, welded and brazed into place. It’s a little difficult to see black on the dark underside but you can make it out.

The top part of the firewall had to be fabricated as it was little thin in the top crease, so again it was decided by Terry to cut the top off the firewall and replace it with fresh metal and shape it to the new lower cowl. Metal work skills being displayed in all their glory and you can’t even tell it has been replaced.  With the lower cowl now firmly welded in place it was masked up and then given the first of a couple of layers of primer. It was at this point I was sent this teaser photo by Adam to show the primer had been applied to the cowl, this is the first piece of fresh metal to get proper paint.

lowercowlprime

I turned up very excited and itching to see the car expecting to see the cowl in primer. I wasn’t disappointed the lower cowl was painted in the colour that I wanted, Acapulco Blue. Obviously I am biased big time here, but it’s a bit different and a stock ’67 Mustang colour, I am absolutely delighted with it. This was the first time I had seen the colour on my car. A pretty special moment.

I got a bit carried away having a little bonding session with the fantastic paint job much to the amusement of the guys who followed me in to see my surprised look. Adam broke the news to me about the very busy day ahead of me. The trunk was to be removed and then strip it back to bare metal to see if there was any “little surprises” waiting for us as Adam puts it. What he means is, are there any pin holes or rust that have been covered up. I started on the top side and then worked my way to the underside. The underside took a lot longer due to all the corners and curves that made it hard work. I am pleased to say after a few hours hard work that the trunk is solid and no rust at all, except for a two very light surface areas where the paint had chipped off on the top side.

The next job was to red oxide the inside firewall as I had stripped it back to metal last week. The end results are pretty amazing I must say.

I was spoilt this week in my own little sanctuary, a nice guy Chris was given the dubious pleasure of working with me for the day. It’s normally quiet in the work shop, but last weekend it was a nice change to have somebody to share a conversation with all things cars. Chris made a great job of stripping the right side B pillar and the rear panel under the rear screen. Thanks for your hard work Chris. Throughout the day the normal visits from the guys was in full flow and towards the end of the day I was given some “homework” by Adam. That homework was to take home one of the fenders and strip it back to bare metal. Adam was right it was a busy weekend for me with a few more to come like it. Things have stepped up a notch, big time!

Sunday, I got up with a full day in front of me and the backs of my legs aching. My homework was to be completed along with the trunk hinges and sprung bars that connect them to hold the trunk open. The hinges were to be stripped and all paint removed as it has to be painted the same colour inside the trunk. I though I would try to be clever to strip and clean the parts with the sprung tension bars in place. Unfortunately this turned out to be a nightmare so I had to remove the bars.

I held one of the hinges in the vice and lever out the first bar. This was enough to start a cascade of events. The sprung bar unleashed itself like a coiled cobra and the end of the bar slapped me on the left hand at the base of the knuckle, the instant pain caused me to rub my hand as the other bar sprang away hit the man cave rubbish bin, this in turn was sent flying leaving a cloud of old sanding dust and rubbish all on the man cave floor in the doorway. After the initial clean up and the bruise on my thumb and wrist getting darker by the minute, I took the hinges back outside to complete the strip down. Both hinges came out pretty well and I was well pleased. To protect the inside of the hinges I gave a coating of Eastwood Rust Encapsulator to prevent additional rust on the inside of the hinges. The sprung bars were given an undercoat of red oxide and then a top layer of silver.

The homework was a dilemma, how to remove the paint from the fender. I decided on my Dewalt dual action sander with a 100grit discs. I intended to go down to the undercoat and then use a lighter and lighter grades to get to the bare metal. Some of it went to plan and some of the paint came straight of and I went to the metal. I will have to fine buff the tiny swirl off the metal work now this weekend. The purpose of the homework? to see if there were any little surprises waiting for me. I am pleased to say I didn’t find any on this original panel so far. I still have the top edge to complete but that could be later in the week or next weekend.

A big update again and a lot has happened, I intended to post on Sunday as normal. But, I had so many pictures to edit it was very late to start writing this little lot up. Forgiven?

Quick Links:

Right fender work to treat the inside click here

Share my Content

Front End Fixes

The guys at Mustang Maniac have been busy welding up new plates to the inner wing and replacing the top cap plates to the fender from the cowl area. This little plate is quite a critical part of the car structure. To remove it without being on a jig will cause the car to bend at the firewall, in effect making the car sag in the middle. Although I had painted the areas and left the offending holes unpatched Yogi has taken a big chunk out and welded a completed new piece back in its place, just to be sure. The welding has been ground down and ready for more protective red oxide.

The steering linkages are the concentration this weekend as I am a little frustrated about having all the parts over my bench. Yes, I know I can move them, but it also prompts me to do something about it. So the plan was to remove the Gibbs Brand, not that you need to, but I Wanted to clean it up again to remove a few little pockets of grease I had missed around the valve mechanism. I applied the degreaser and with a clean white cloth to see where the dirt came from. Once I was happy with the parts being clean and dry I started the tedious masking up of the areas not to be painted. First of all was the rubber sections, and nothing else as everything was going to get a good coat of red oxide primer over it. I found that carrier bags on the larger parts inside the masking tape areas is a quick and easy way to protect the areas not to be painted. Only a small amount of tape is needed to hold it in place. I applied a blob of poster tack into the screw in sections to stop the paint getting in. Once it has been sprayed pull it out and throw it away.

The spraying of the red oxide primer was a little slow to dry due to the weather not being its best. But allowing coats to thoroughly dry before giving a second layer. I also sprayed the idler arm sections and the steel pipe from the valve as well at this point as they are quite small.

With the red oxide dried the next task was to mask up everything that was not going to be satin black painted. That was going to be the valve area and the main ram. To save the valve area complicated masking up I used a vinyl glove over the part and pulled it towards the accurate masking I had done earlier, to secure it in place was a simple wrap of tap around the wrist section. You only have to turn it inside out to re-use the glove with no wastage! The satin black paint dried a lot faster now as the sun was coming out and warmed the man up to an acceptable temperature.

The final part once the black had dried to was to reverse mask up ready for the silver spray. The smaller parts didn’t need to be masked again as they were going to be a single colour. Unfortunately the silver is taking hours and hours to try even though I used thin light sprays to build up the colour it is still a little tacky. I was hoping to add the pipe work to it today but the cool weather has put a stop to that. Rather than ruin the paint I decided to leave that till next week.

I would like to share a final photo of how I am supporting the ram and main steering bar while it all dries. Yep, I know it looks a bit naff, but it works.

steerpaint14

Review:

I have added a tool review for the Makita GA454530KD Angle Grinder here, or go to the Tools Review Menu and find it there. This was the replacement for my unbranded grinder that caught fire on me a few weeks ago. What do I think of it? Find out by reading the review. You can also click on the picture to go to the review!

makita2

Share my Content