This month I have selected LeeFred's beautiful '65 FB as Ride of the Month. Lee's story is awesome and he has provided some good detail and excellent history behind his car. Well done Lee. Thanks for sharing.
It was 1980, and I was in the Army at Fort Lewis, WA. I had been in for almost a year and had no vehicle. Basically I was bumming rides or borrowing someone's car to get around off post. After getting stood up for a ride, I figured it was time for a vehicle. My first car, before I joined the Army, was a 1965 Chevy Biscayne, two door, with a 327 and slip 'n slide Powerglide transmission. I became interested in cars and engines then, and read the magazines back in the day; Car Craft, Hot Rod, and my own personal favorite, Popular Hot Rodding. So I had an idea what I wanted. I started looking for a Mustang or a Nova. I started checking out the classifieds in the local newspaper and came across an ad for a 1965 Mustang for $1,000 at a used car dealership in Puyallup, WA. I took $1000 out of the bank, put $800 in my wallet and $200 in my front pocket. I got a ride to Puyallup and saw the car. At that time, I had no idea that Mustangs were available as a fastback in 1965. There she sat - covered in flat brown paint, back end all covered in various bumper stickers, and the interior smelled like a wet dog. It was a trade-in from California. I took it for a test drive and noticed that the tires were too tall for the car because whenever I took a turn a little above crawling speed, the tires rubbed against the front fenders. It ran pretty strong. Under the hood was a 289 with a 2bbl carburetor, C4 trans, and a dual exhaust. I offered the salesman the $800, and the car was mine. Took it back to the barracks, and a buddy and I peeled all the bumper stickers off, stripped out the interior (where we found 17 marijuana roaches under the seats) and shampooed the carpet, put some smaller tires that didn't rub the fenders on it, and covered the plain steel rims with hubcaps from a local wrecking yard. When I went back to get the license plates, the salesman was looking at it like it was a different car.
About a year later, I got t boned by a Honda Civic as I was backing up across a road to turn around. I had earlier in the day rebuilt the Holley 2bbl, but didn't know enough about adjusting the floats. I was backing up, at night, at the bottom of a hill when the car stalled from being flooded. I got hit right behind the driver's door. While I was talking to people about getting the damage repaired, I started stock piling parts to put on the engine. I eventually drove the car down to Eugene, OR, where an Army friend had some buddies that restored Thunderbirds. They cut and replace the rear quarter panel, but used a lot of Bondo to finish the job. Got the Mustang back to Fort Lewis and put it back together in time to transfer to Fort Huachcua, AZ. I upgraded the engine with a Holley 4bbl, an Edelbrock Torker intake (which I still have), a pair of Cyclone headers (which are still on the engine), and various other pieces.
During my Army career, the Mustang went through various changes. I used it as a daily driver, so it picked up dings and dents along the way. Whenever a body part was damaged, I would just replace it with a part from another Mustang being parted out. It became known as the "calico" Mustang due to the different colored parts on it. It sat in a friend's backyard for 3 years when I went to Germany, and another year when I was stationed in Korea. Got married a couple of times, and had children, so the Mustang was being driven, but no bodywork or paint was being done. It actually became an embarrassment to drive it around.
In 2010, I finally got the Mustang painted the Grabber Blue color that's on it now. I did various engine and suspension upgrades to it's current condition. It now needs another paint job as the person who painted it talked a better game than what he could play. I still drive it almost daily when it's not apart
Currently the engine is a 289 with a stock crank and HiPo 289 connecting roads and Sealed Power forged pistons. The top end is a Blue Thunder dual quad manifold with a Holley 600 as the primary carb, and a Holley 390 as the secondary. A Carter electric fuel pump sends the fuel from the gas tank to the engine. The ignition is a Pertronix II with a Flamethrower coil and Ford Racing wires. Heads are Twisted Wedge 170's with Trick Flow roller rockers. The cam is a Comp Cams XE262-H grind and Comp Cams lifters and push rods. The exhaust is a pair of Cyclone headers that have been on there since 1981, with a generic dual exhaust with the GT trumpets that exit out a GT rear valance. The oil pump is a standard Mellings unit with an upgraded shaft. The oil pan is stock and a Boss 302 windage tray keeps the oil from the crank and rods. Cooling is a Champion aluminum radiator, hi volume water pump, and a clutch fan. Transmission is a Ford Toploader 4 speed out of another 65 K-code Mustang with a Hurst shifter and Ram clutch set. I installed an Explorer aluminum driveshaft and the rear end is an 8" with 3.55 TractionLock and Moser axles. Braking is a pair of Kelsey-Hayes 4 piston discs up front, stock rear drums, and a dual bowl master cylinder. The body has a open front valance that directs more air to the bottom of the radiator, a hood with the 65/66 Shelby scoop, and a GT rear valance. Suspension has the Shelby/Arning drop on the front, heavier springs on the front and rear, and KYB shocks all the way around. Interior has the fold down rear seat removed and replaced with a 66 Shelby rear shelf where I keep the spare tire mounted. Stock front buckets, full length factory console, 5 instrument gauge cluster, 65 Shelby gauge pod with a Stewart Warner tach and a clock. When I'm in the mood for music, I have the stock AM radio in the dash, but it powers an amp that's located under the rear panel and I hook up my phone to it to steam in music. I have manual steering with the 4:1 steering box rebuilt by Chockostang, manual brakes, no AC - just the basics.
Like I mentioned before, I try to drive it as much as possible. I have had a lot of adventures in, both good and not so good. My wife is always wondering what I'm doing with the car "now", and I try things out to see if I like it or not. I take it to most of the local car shows around here, but don't win anything. My family wonders why, and I tell them that it's a daily driver that can't compete with the others that don't get driven. I have small dings here and there, the paint is fading, a small crack in the windshield, dirty undercarriage, etc. But I bought it to drive. In 2017, I drove to Reno for Hot August Nights, and put in 2600 miles in a week. This spring I'm registered for the Fabulous Fords Forever show at Knott's Berry Farm and will drive my Mustang to that one. I love the comments and thumbs up I get when I'm out on the road because other than body work and paint, I've done everything myself on it. In a few months, my youngest daughter is going to be getting her learner's permit to drive, and I'm going to get her started on the Mustang. I told her that if she can handle the clutch and shifting on this, she'll be able to drive just about anything else on the road. There's a local airport that was a World War II bomber base, and it has lots of open runways and adjacent roads that aren't used. It'll be an adventure!
2 x 4...Nice
With another popular member here...