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post #1 of 17 (permalink) Old 07-12-2019, 02:13 AM Thread Starter
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Help for a newbie

Hey everyone. I apologize if this is not in the correct thread, but I’m looking to purchase a mustang in the next few months, most likely a 67 or 68.

I’m new to this world, and I was wondering if anyone would be willing to fill me in on any big red flags I should be looking for as I do my research.

Any help offered is greatly appreciated. Thanks in advance.
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post #2 of 17 (permalink) Old 07-12-2019, 03:07 AM
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Originally Posted by RoMoCo View Post
Hey everyone. I apologize if this is not in the correct thread, but Iím looking to purchase a mustang in the next few months, most likely a 67 or 68.

Iím new to this world, and I was wondering if anyone would be willing to fill me in on any big red flags I should be looking for as I do my research.

Any help offered is greatly appreciated. Thanks in advance.

Hi, welcome to the Forum. I can't provide you mustang-specific advice, as I've just recently bought one myself, but I have bought and sold my fair share of classics, so I'll give some general advice, hope its helpful.



1) Make sure you love how the car rides, feels and "fits" you - don't just fall in love with how it looks. Classic cars are great and all, but they generally lack most of the creature comforts modern cars offer - even basic things like seats that recline, steering wheels that have tilt and telescope, can be rare depending on the model. There's nothing worse than getting a classic car, that becomes a lawn ornament, because you just cant stand being behind the wheel. I'm 6'1, long torso, long arms....sort of a lanky thing that can't ever seem to find a dress shirt that fits....so I've lowered seats, moved them back, padded them up for lumbar support, etc - but you need to assess whether you have those talents and time. The allure of a classic car is is strong, but remember that its behind the wheel that the magic really happens, so make sure your back, legs and arms love the car as much as your eyes - or at least take note of the mods you'll need to make.



2) Even if you are looking for a top-tier restored example, go armed with data and a check list. I usually buy the classic (no pun intended) 20-footer, but regardless of condition, I take my spreadsheet and I score the car. It makes sure I don't get carried away and make a dumb decision, and it helps remind me to check things. Once you are face-to-face with your 67 or 68 potential dream car, you need to adopt a logical approach and purge the emotion - they'll be time for that later, if its the right car, because if you get lost in the "idea" of that car, and how "cool" it will be, but its the wrong car....you'll have plenty of emotions in the other direction. Once somebody more knowledgeable on 67/8 mustangs chimes in, you may be able to add specific areas to check and examine to the list.


3) Decide what you want, determine how much you are willing to pay, THEN go looking and stick to your plan. Its very easy to start making exceptions and compromises once you get into the search - you start out demanding "no rust" and pretty soon you're researching the best way to replace a quarter panel. Its fine to adjust expectations, but make sure they are adjustments to the reality of the market, not compromises to make the car you found one state over fit your needs - square pegs, round holes, etc. You will probably find many cars, only a few will really be right, and fewer yet will be in the sweet spot - whatever that is for you . Generally speaking though, its a mistake to overly erode what you really want, to fit what you've happened to find. There's always another car...(unless you're after something pretty specialized).



4) Know your limits and don't be a damned fool. If you have the mechanical skill of a gopher and the bank balance of Oliver Twist....take care with classic cars - they eat cash about as fast as they do gasoline. If you are mechanically inclined, great, but be realistic about what's "in your wheelhouse" For example, I can do engines, electrical, interiors - all pretty well. Body work and paint though? I suck like a Dyson vacuum - seriously, I can make any rust repair 45% worse, just looking at it. I've PUT dents into fenders that were BIGGER than the one I was trying to fix. As a result, I look for cars that don't need body work, or, I at least try for minimal issues where I can estimate the repair cost and get it to my body guy. If the interior is shredded, that's no biggie for me, because that sort of work is 100% in my capability. So don't buy yourself into a problem you can't fix, or cant afford to pay to have fixed. The only exception I'd make is if you are buying the car for the express purpose of doing a project, and learning.



5) Understand that unless you buy a restored or really well-cared for example, these things take time and tinkering. I mean no offense, I obviously have no idea who you are, what cars you drive or what experience you have, but classic cars are not Honda Civics. Its a whole paradigm shift when it comes to classic motoring - oil will disappear, you plugs wont last 100K, the computer wont tell you exactly what is wrong, they'll decide to work one day, and blow a gasket the next and there are times when its one darned thing after another...all while your modern car sits there....just working.....for 200K miles..... For me, the tinkering is half the fun, but its a double edged sword. I mention this because I've known people that were in love with the idea of a classic car, but completely unprepared for the TLC required to keep them on the road. Classic cars have "personality" and it often expresses itself in terms of "what odd thing will I do today, and when do I want to have that part stop working".



All said though, its totally worth it - just go in with your eyes open, expectations realistic, and a well-grounded opinion of your capabilities and finances. Good luck in your search, welcome to the "hobby".



Allan
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post #3 of 17 (permalink) Old 07-12-2019, 06:23 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RoMoCo View Post
Hey everyone. I apologize if this is not in the correct thread, but Iím looking to purchase a mustang in the next few months, most likely a 67 or 68.

Iím new to this world, and I was wondering if anyone would be willing to fill me in on any big red flags I should be looking for as I do my research. ......."
as you have stated that you are new to classic cars, the most important thing to learn right off the bat, is to have an experienced person throughly examine the car for: RUST. Any other hidden surprises can be overcome with a modest amount of time and money. But if a car is rusty, you can easily get overwhelmed with the repair bills.

If you are in any city over 30,000 population, there's sure to be a classic car club, maybe even a Mustang vintage car club close by. Either way, those people will be very happy to welcome you into their ranks, and help you examine a car and learn it's pros and cons BEFORE you make the purchase.

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Originally Posted by pentarch231 View Post
Unmistakably still a Mustang, Fordís hugely successful ĎPony Carí has been given a round of updates for the 2018 model year, which sees more power from the big V8 engine, a new automatic gearbox, detail improvements to the suspension and interior and new safety equipment that has been largely driven by sharp criticism of the outgoing modelís safety score in the Euro NCAP tests.

The styling, as iconic as ever, hasnít been meddled with much......."
what does that have to do with the OP's question

Z

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post #4 of 17 (permalink) Old 07-12-2019, 08:59 AM
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Add your location to your avatar! Make sure the title and vin stamps/plate matchup on a 50 something-year-old car. Follow as many web sites that have the cars your interested in to get a feel for what's out there and what they sell for. Patience and developing knowledge about old mustangs is needed for your decision. Ebay, bring a trailer, craigslist, car clubs, car shows etc are just a few places to look at. I guess the biggest red flag issue is someone selling a car that has had rust issues repaired to look like it doesn't have those issues, and charging the price of a car that has been properly restored. This usually revolves around rusted panels thru out the car that have been patched or filled and painted/undercoated in such a way that the buyer doesn't think there are any problems, but, surprise, there are! Treozen and Zray are on the mark!
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post #5 of 17 (permalink) Old 07-12-2019, 09:55 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Treozen View Post
Hi, welcome to the Forum. I can't provide you mustang-specific advice, as I've just recently bought one myself, but I have bought and sold my fair share of classics, so I'll give some general advice, hope its helpful.



1) Make sure you love how the car rides, feels and "fits" you - don't just fall in love with how it looks. Classic cars are great and all, but they generally lack most of the creature comforts modern cars offer - even basic things like seats that recline, steering wheels that have tilt and telescope, can be rare depending on the model. There's nothing worse than getting a classic car, that becomes a lawn ornament, because you just cant stand being behind the wheel. I'm 6'1, long torso, long arms....sort of a lanky thing that can't ever seem to find a dress shirt that fits....so I've lowered seats, moved them back, padded them up for lumbar support, etc - but you need to assess whether you have those talents and time. The allure of a classic car is is strong, but remember that its behind the wheel that the magic really happens, so make sure your back, legs and arms love the car as much as your eyes - or at least take note of the mods you'll need to make.



2) Even if you are looking for a top-tier restored example, go armed with data and a check list. I usually buy the classic (no pun intended) 20-footer, but regardless of condition, I take my spreadsheet and I score the car. It makes sure I don't get carried away and make a dumb decision, and it helps remind me to check things. Once you are face-to-face with your 67 or 68 potential dream car, you need to adopt a logical approach and purge the emotion - they'll be time for that later, if its the right car, because if you get lost in the "idea" of that car, and how "cool" it will be, but its the wrong car....you'll have plenty of emotions in the other direction. Once somebody more knowledgeable on 67/8 mustangs chimes in, you may be able to add specific areas to check and examine to the list.


3) Decide what you want, determine how much you are willing to pay, THEN go looking and stick to your plan. Its very easy to start making exceptions and compromises once you get into the search - you start out demanding "no rust" and pretty soon you're researching the best way to replace a quarter panel. Its fine to adjust expectations, but make sure they are adjustments to the reality of the market, not compromises to make the car you found one state over fit your needs - square pegs, round holes, etc. You will probably find many cars, only a few will really be right, and fewer yet will be in the sweet spot - whatever that is for you . Generally speaking though, its a mistake to overly erode what you really want, to fit what you've happened to find. There's always another car...(unless you're after something pretty specialized).



4) Know your limits and don't be a damned fool. If you have the mechanical skill of a gopher and the bank balance of Oliver Twist....take care with classic cars - they eat cash about as fast as they do gasoline. If you are mechanically inclined, great, but be realistic about what's "in your wheelhouse" For example, I can do engines, electrical, interiors - all pretty well. Body work and paint though? I suck like a Dyson vacuum - seriously, I can make any rust repair 45% worse, just looking at it. I've PUT dents into fenders that were BIGGER than the one I was trying to fix. As a result, I look for cars that don't need body work, or, I at least try for minimal issues where I can estimate the repair cost and get it to my body guy. If the interior is shredded, that's no biggie for me, because that sort of work is 100% in my capability. So don't buy yourself into a problem you can't fix, or cant afford to pay to have fixed. The only exception I'd make is if you are buying the car for the express purpose of doing a project, and learning.



5) Understand that unless you buy a restored or really well-cared for example, these things take time and tinkering. I mean no offense, I obviously have no idea who you are, what cars you drive or what experience you have, but classic cars are not Honda Civics. Its a whole paradigm shift when it comes to classic motoring - oil will disappear, you plugs wont last 100K, the computer wont tell you exactly what is wrong, they'll decide to work one day, and blow a gasket the next and there are times when its one darned thing after another...all while your modern car sits there....just working.....for 200K miles..... For me, the tinkering is half the fun, but its a double edged sword. I mention this because I've known people that were in love with the idea of a classic car, but completely unprepared for the TLC required to keep them on the road. Classic cars have "personality" and it often expresses itself in terms of "what odd thing will I do today, and when do I want to have that part stop working".



All said though, its totally worth it - just go in with your eyes open, expectations realistic, and a well-grounded opinion of your capabilities and finances. Good luck in your search, welcome to the "hobby".



Allan
This is excellent advice!

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2007 GT/CS
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post #6 of 17 (permalink) Old 07-12-2019, 12:56 PM
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I will just add to bring a magnet with you to try and find hidden body filler. I carried a small magnet covered in painter’s tape and placed it in strategic places to check for filler. I’ve seen too many cars that looked amazing at first but were discovered to have pounds of body filler in them. @Treozen has some excellent advice, probably some of the best I’ve seen on this topic. Decide what you want to do with the car ahead of time. I was initially looking for a stock K code, but at the last minute, with the help of some knowledgeable friends, decided that a resto-mod suited my life better. The process and knowledge of buying a stock versus modded car are very different. The internet is your best friend. Good luck!

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post #7 of 17 (permalink) Old 07-12-2019, 01:14 PM
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Originally Posted by zray View Post
What does that have to do with the OP's question
Z
Newish member pentarch231 is a troll for a driving school. See the link at the end of that nonsense post?

Last edited by 4ocious; 07-12-2019 at 01:18 PM.
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post #8 of 17 (permalink) Old 07-12-2019, 02:51 PM
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What can you do? Spend money? Then take your time, there are good deals for good cars out there. Don't buy one just for the price and plan to change it, that will cost more, and always more than you planned. Some people say i bought an old car to work on and i never understand why. I buy them to drive and the working on part will present itself anyway!

Pick a price or pick what you really want then look at many many choices that match your criteria before you buy. There are no shortages of them for sale.

i would rather buy a solid nice looking car that ran or drove poorly than one needing body work. Don't think you can get a nice running ugly car and expect to paint it for 2-3K those days are gone along with the $1K engine job.
Beware fresh paint! A tired original paint job or one redone 10+ years ago will be more honest. Any flaw in 5 yo paint is gonna get worse quickly.
Never buy a car in primer, they we doing just enough to cover up the really ugly and its gonna need re-doing anyway.

Never fully trust the seller and never pay what they ask

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post #9 of 17 (permalink) Old 07-12-2019, 03:16 PM
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Ask questions, learn as much as you can, and get plugged in to your local Mustang club. Add your location to your profile/avatar so we know where you are. If you're nearby, someone will surely be happy to go look at a car with you.

Also, define what you're looking for... Not just which year/style Mustang, but what state? Concours restored, restomodded, original looking with performance/safety upgrades, pro-street, project car you plan to restore, etc. As has already been suggested, know exactly what you want or what's important to you and what you're getting into before you get into it.

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post #10 of 17 (permalink) Old 07-12-2019, 03:26 PM
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Buy a new Mustang with full factory warranty. Enjoy it immediately and for many years to come.

- This message brought to you by For Motor Company
================================================== =================


Seriously, good advice above. Are you looking for a complete driver or a project car?
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post #11 of 17 (permalink) Old 07-12-2019, 04:47 PM Thread Starter
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Wow!

That’s a lot of really good information. I guess I could have provided a little more background. I’ve got a firm budget in mind and fairly decent mechanical skills. I’m self-taught and I’m certainly not familiar with the specific quirks of these cars (yet).

I also think I have a solid idea of what I’m looking for. I’m in the same boat with a few others who commented, I feel pretty confident I can handle everything but body and paint work. The pie in the sky dream for many moons from now would be a restomod or pro touring type of build. In the meantime I’d like to find a clean, rust free car with a V8. I’m a red blooded American, so there is a slight preference for the larger displacement 8’s, but given my budget, based on what I’ve seen it will likely be a 289 or 302. It would be nice if the paint was in really good shape, but as long as it isn’t all primer or multiple colors, it doesn’t have to be pristine. I don’t expect or intend for it to be a show car. I just want to drive it and slowly upgrade over time.

I’m north of Houston, in the Woodlands. Checked on adding my location, wasn’t immediately obvious, I’ll look into it more later. I’m definitely interested in local classic or Mustang clubs, but haven’t done a ton of research on those yet. I’m definitely interested in having someone more knowledgeable give me a sanity check when I find something I think I might buy.

I really appreciate all the great information. Thank you all, really looking forward to more great conversations!
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post #12 of 17 (permalink) Old 07-12-2019, 04:51 PM Thread Starter
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Forgot to mention, I want it to run. I don’t mind so much if it’s not in perfect condition, but I don’t want to pull the engine/transmission and rebuild them as soon as I get it home. The hope is I can enjoy it while I’m saving up/planning out the upgrades.
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post #13 of 17 (permalink) Old 07-12-2019, 04:58 PM
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Basically...As you go from the earlier years '65-'66 to '67-'68 and then to '69-'70......The parts get harder to find and more expensive!

)

Tony K.
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post #14 of 17 (permalink) Old 07-12-2019, 04:59 PM
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You're in good company. Lots of us Mustang folks in Texas. Nothing wrong with a small block Ford. You can get them to perform far better than the most badass stock big block of the day.

As far as paint, there's nothing wrong with shiny paint, but the longer most of us are in this game, and as rarely as you see them on the road these days, there is a lot of room for a nice patina. To put it another way, a beat up car that's on the road is cooler than a showpiece that never leaves the garage.

The anvil of reality.
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post #15 of 17 (permalink) Old 07-12-2019, 05:14 PM
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All good advice.
My 2Ę: First, pick the body/year that you want: 64.5-66, 67-68 or 69-70. Sit in them, the dash/instrument layouts are very different. Then be mindful of the difference in price for coupes and fastbacks and convertibles. This will focus your search.
Get one of those paint thickness magnets, it will tell you if thereís filler underneath. And a scope to look inside the doors (cheap ones can be had that simply plug into your phone). A big plus would be pictures of the restoration process. Weíve all seen soda cans used as filler that are hard to detect. As others stated (and you implied), much better to get a good body that needs mechanical/electrical work then the other way around. Engines, transmissions and suspension can always be repaired/changed/updated. Cowl replacement, on the other hand, is extremely time consuming and expensive.
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