As you may know, I purchased a very rust-free, zero bondo '66 GT A-Code on New Year's Day. I've been looking at it for 3 days and have yet to find anything bent, rotted or missing. The car has been sitting in an Atlanta carport for the last 10+ years. The PO told me the car was last started (not moved) about 8 years ago.
This weekend, I'm pulling the gas tank or capping the broken fuel feed hose so I can then roll it into my garage without that old gas smell stinking the place up and causing a fire hazard.
It's an automatic trans car with front disc, power steering. Currently sitting on car skates.
Can anyone point me to a good thread or site with steps as to best revive this beauty. I'd like to get her running, stopping and issues sorted out before sending her to get a shiny new coat of paint.
I'd start with a full drain of oil, new filter/oil, then a turn over of engine to get the oil up and around without actually starting.
If you plan to drive it then a full drain/change of all fluids, plugs, wires, etc...
That car really does look super straight and complete,..and YES you did steal it for the price you posted in the original thread
A lot of envious members here, theres a lot to be said for persistence, family members were prolly happy to find such an eager and ready buyer that they didn't have to advertise for.
Wife,........."You drove how far for that thing?"
Daughter,..."Theres no inside and it stinks."
Friend,......."Dude, thats a rusted piece of sheet."
Son,.........."This old car is cool."
Anything with fluids in it, drain, flush and inspect. Engine, axle, transmission and brakes. If it is still running the fruit jar master cylinder, upgrade to a dual M/C for safety's sake.
Close inspection on all brake lines for any rust or rust pitting. Maybe rebuild all the brake seals in the calipers and drums.
Throw in some fresh plugs, wires, points and condenser and cap and rotor too.
Have you checked to see if the engine turns freely yet?
Inspect all battery cables and all wiring carefully for cracks in insulation and corrosion.
Off the top of my head that's all I can think of.
2015 GT Fastback - Deep Impact Blue On order!
1995 GT convertible - Black (Son's ride)
1966 GT Fastback under restoration- Code T Red
with White LeMans stripes.
Obviously, a battery. I'd replace the fuel pump right off. Once good fuel pressure (5 to 6 lbs.) is verified, you should either get the carb rebuilt by a professional shop like Pony Carbs or, buy a new one. When you actually get it running, verify thet the charging cicuit is putting out 14+ volts. Next depends alot on mileage. These older valve trains wore out pretty quickly. Anything much over 60,000 miles, I'd pull the heads, get a valve job, hardened valve seats, new springs, stock rockers, pushrods, and depending on condition, a very mild cam and lifter upgrade. Pleeeeeeease, do not get horsepower hungry and get a big cam, then heads, etc. This is a trap and a money pit. If the engine is closer to 100,000 miles, it might be bottom end time. I cannot stress enough how much better a really smooth running near stock engine is than some over built monstrosity. Next, how's the transmission?
+1 on dropping that tank...just get rid of it as it surely is full of rust (save the sending unit though).
IMHO, I'd start with the basic mechanical components that deteriorate the most over time, brakes and suspension. Inspect all the brake components and rebuild or replace as your skills allow. This includes the hard and soft lines, wheel cylinders, calipers, master cylinder, brake cables, etc. If the backing plates or stone guards are rusty, clean them up and paint, or better yet, powder coat them.
Next, I'd move to the suspension, replacing tired springs, shackles/bushings/perches, insulators, bumpers, etc., basically all the rubber stuff. then look at the ball joints and tie rod ends and, if any doubt, replace as well. Clean and inspect the power steering unit for wear, replace seals, etc.
From there, I'd pull the axles and drop the center section and check the axle bearings and seals, carrier bearings, pinion bearings, backlash, etc. This will also give you an opportunity to clean any goo and sediment from the axle housing.
Next up, I'd pull the engine and tranny, degrease them and do a thorough inspection, replacing any worn or broken parts, installing new seals and gaskets, etc.
Then, I'd replace the heater core, re-core or replace the radiator (making sure the integral tranny cooler is flushed clean) and reinstall with new hoses.
I'd then install a new fuel tank and, if needed, lines, and inspect the wiring harness for damage and condition and repair or replace as needed. Lastly, I'd "borrow" a battery or buy a cheap used one, and make sure everything is operating properly. When satisfied, I'd change the oil and send it off to the body shop.
Why a cheap battery? Depending on how long it takes at the body shop and my past experiences, when they finish with it the battery will be junk and then you can invest in a nice AGM unit like an Optima.
Now, I'm an old school, frugal kind of guy. When I'm working on something I make 3 piles.... one of stuff that I'm definitely going to reuse, another of stuff that is of questionable condition but may have to be reconditioned and reused or discarded, and the last is the "junk" pile, but I don't actually throw something away until I have the replacement in hand.
During the process of mechanical restoration you can make your own decisions about what "improvements" or modifications you may want to incorporate. There are literally THOUSANDS of different things you can do that have been discussed here from the "Arning Drop" to spherical roller bearing suspension components to different rear gear ratios. These are all variable based on your desires.
Finally, what you end up with is your business and you might want to make it a GT-350 clone or other restomod, etc. I'd just like to say that what you have appears to be a nice, straight and relatively unmolested (except for the front apron) A-code, GT 2+2 with a couple nice options (PS and AT) in a desirable color that would be a real shame to cut up any more than necessary.
Let me add my support to Bucket listers advice to maintain a stock engine. I rebuilt my 289 to stock including rebuilding the two barrel and it runs fantastically. Much better then my buddys swap out to a 5.0.
...Finally, what you end up with is your business and you might want to make it a GT-350 clone or other restomod, etc. I'd just like to say that what you have appears to be a nice, straight and relatively unmolested (except for the front apron) A-code, GT 2+2 with a couple nice options (PS and AT) in a desirable color that would be a real shame to cut up any more than necessary.
What BARTL said. Oh, the front apron. Selling it, PO gave me the original apron and bumper with the boxes of parts and spares. Spare doors, old steering wheel, several sets of tail lenses and bezels. I'm just digging into the inventory.
Plan is to restore it to high end driver state as Ford intended. No trailer queen.
I'd never feel guilty enough to sell it. Remember, I've waited 10 years for it to come available.
I'm glad I have some sturdy jack stands!
Note: I did find some green paint on the left rocker and the fender apron. Also rivet heads in the floor, driver side behind seat. Still, not a sign of bondo and any repairs look first class.
Just an FYI in addition to what everyone else has said.......of course you will replace all the rubber....anything fuel related use EFI hose (it is resistant to the alcohol blended fuels) and also there is a very short piece of rubber hose that connects the fuel tank to the steel fuel line.....
What are the chances that the heads already have hardened valve seats installed.
Update: I found one patch to the drivers rear quarter. Professionally done. All numbers found match.
Pretty slim, and if they've been on the car since new undoubtedly you should replace the guides, rockers and springs too. I'd also replace the rocker studs - your decision as to replace with screw-in's or OE pressed in place.
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