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Old 04-26-2013, 09:00 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Scott Drake export brace off by a mile?

Trying to install my new export brace on my 69 Mach1, and although the holes at the firewall look to line up, the shock towers aren't even close. Looks like if I took 1/2" off the back edge of the brace by the firewall to shift the brace closer to the firewall all the holes for the shock towers would line up, but I'd need to redrill new holes. My other 69 lined right up. What gives? Any advice guys? Thanks in advance.
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Old 04-26-2013, 09:03 PM   #2 (permalink)
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I have a hunch it's your car that is tweaked.
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Old 04-26-2013, 09:09 PM   #3 (permalink)
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The export brace is probably 99% fine, short of the standard caved in shock towers that most people experience when fitting a export brace your car may have other issues.

Try and jack the car up and put jack stands in the front and see if that will bring the front closer to back similar to what people do when they have caved in towers and let the front end droop so that the brace will go in.

If that doesn't work it may be time to look into a spec sheet and start to measure things to see how bad they are off and getting the frame straightened.

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Old 04-26-2013, 09:12 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Let's see pics of what you actually got going on.
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Old 04-26-2013, 09:19 PM   #5 (permalink)
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I agree with the others, it's your car. It's a very common problem where the shock towers start migrating toward the engine.
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Old 04-26-2013, 09:35 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by manley View Post
I agree with the others, it's your car. It's a very common problem where the shock towers start migrating toward the engine.
But "most" times they cave in due to age, fatigue, and rust, thus needing the towers to be spread back apart for the brace to fit, not forward as what he is describing as his problem is.
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Old 04-26-2013, 09:55 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Its not caved in towers toward the engine that's going on. The brace is off front to back. In other words if the back edge of the brace were a bit shorter and could sit closer to the firewall the brace would drop right on. I just have my iPad right now and no way to post pictures or I would post a picture of what's the situation. To he best of my knowledge the cars not been hit in the front.
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Old 04-26-2013, 10:01 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Ok, so the brace front to back seems too long. Jack up the car and put jack stands on the frame rails well behind the engine a couple feet? IOW, you want to get all of the front engine wgt hanging in the air. Let it sit overnight...the front part of the car will sag down slightly increasing the distance from the firewall to the shock towers....this worked on mine perfectly with a very similar condition.
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Old 04-26-2013, 10:02 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Jack the the front up and put jack stands on the frame rails behind the wheel and alow the engine to pull it down in front. You will be surprised how much it moves.
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Old 04-26-2013, 10:02 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Is there bad rust someplace?
It is not normal for the car to sag forward short of accident damage, poor repair of a said area, or rot causing it.

Shock towers caving in is due to rust or age and metal fatigue, shock towers going forward is a whole other problem.

You got issues some place.
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Old 04-26-2013, 10:24 PM   #11 (permalink)
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The scott drake piece should be the exact dimensions of the original ford stamping, they have the original ford tooling I believe. You car is most likely off, try letting it sit on jack stands or a couple days, put the stands as far back on frame rails as you can to let the front sag down. On my car I had to grind a couple holes on the export brace to get it to fit but it was not that bad.
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Old 04-26-2013, 10:30 PM   #12 (permalink)
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Do like they say above and let it hang for a day or two. Also, fit the export brace to the shock towers first and then drift in the cowl end. It should go then.
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Old 04-26-2013, 11:45 PM   #13 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ringo View Post
Trying to install my new export brace on my 69 Mach1, and although the holes at the firewall look to line up, the shock towers aren't even close. Looks like if I took 1/2" off the back edge of the brace by the firewall to shift the brace closer to the firewall all the holes for the shock towers would line up, but I'd need to redrill new holes. My other 69 lined right up. What gives? Any advice guys? Thanks in advance.
If you have the high-quality Drake brace, then the car is sagged. I've seen this many times, on cars that have never been hit, no rust in the rails.

Do this:

Remove the upper shock brackets and factory braces.

Loosen all the fender bolts on the top of the fender.

Install the brace by very loosely connecting the bolts attaching the brace to the firewall pinchweld.

Determine which side of the car is farthest "off" at the shock tower, and start with that side.

Put a floor jack under the front frame rail extension, below the front edge of the front seat.

Raise the car, until the tower aligns with the brace, and install the nuts. Often the front tire will be off the ground. Sometimes even the rear tire. A few times I needed a Port A Power across the engine compartment.

Repeat on the other side.

Tighten the center brace bolts.

Tighten the fender bolts.
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Old 04-26-2013, 11:53 PM   #14 (permalink)
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Thanks for the advice guys. The car was a California car and zero rust in it. I'm concerned about panel fit after jacking the car up and leaving it like that for a day. Won't things be off especially after the brace is on and the car is lowered?
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Old 04-26-2013, 11:57 PM   #15 (permalink)
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Not necessarily. You'd be surprised how much bodies flex.
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