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65 Daily Driver restoration

717 Views 6 Replies 6 Participants Last post by  OMGTKK
I have a 65 coupe I6 and it's done well for a few years with only a few minor things I had to fix which never kept her from running. She has never broken down, but I'm looking to clean her up real nice. I want to make sure it's reliable and continues to be a good daily driver. I would love a show condition car, but I don't need it. Mainly I just want to keep her rolling into my kids driving days and make her look nice. I would like to do a modified kind of restoration where everything is working pretty much like new and looks good, but I don't want to be afraid to touch it. Oh yeah, I'd also like to keep her pretty much stock since that's how she sits today. Thanks for any help.
I'm working on getting pictures.
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· Registered
3,994 Posts
Hey, welcome! We're here to help! Here's some thoughts on what I'd add (if not there already) in your car:

* Dual Master Cylinder for Brakes
* Evaluate Steering and Suspension systems; fix/replace whatever needs it.
* 3-point Seat Belts
* Trunk Steel Safety Plate (cover gas tank)
* A/C
* Stereo
* Humphugger console

Also, if you do a "search" (see button at top of page) and use the keywords "daily driver" you'll find a lot of posts on what people have done to build reliability into their rides.

Good luck and have fun! ::

· Gone but never forgotten
25,083 Posts
The '66 in my sig pic is my daily driver, 365 days a year. A daily driver can mean almost anything. Me, I've leaned towards performance. I did all my one body work, then had a decent, but cheap, paint job put on it, because I knew that it wouldn't take long to acquire all the door dings daily drivers seem to get (and as careful as I am, I've got them).

I have pretty much gone overboard with mine, as the only original parts in my car are the windshield wiper motor and harness, the tail light wiring harness, the turn signal wiring harness, and the heater blower motor.

It makes for a great daily driver, I still take it to occasional shows, and even like to take it out to the track for some fun. This car's been my daily driver for 7 years and has only left me stranded one time, when my connector came loose on my MSD ignition box (self inflicted problem :()

IMO, the main way to keep a daily driver dependable is to know the car, listen and feel for anything "out of the norm", and fix it ASAP before it really becomes a problem. My '66 is probably the most dependable car I've ever owned.

· Registered
847 Posts
My car is a daily driver. I am doing a rolling restoration since I use the car every day. What I do is plan ahead, just focus on one area and find as much information as you can during the week then on the weekend take on the job. Little by little is how I am doing it. The most important areas are the engine, suspension and drive train, once all that is running like a dream then turn to the details like the interior.
I have learnt so much from this group, the information is golden. :)
P.S. Isn't it great with having a front bench seat. ::

· Registered
195 Posts
Good advice from everyone so far. I have a 65 FB restomod that is usable as a daily driver. I've done a lot more than you would probably want to get involved with, but will still offer a little advice.
First off, set an annual budget for the car. Let's say you will be willing to dump $500-1000 a year into it. Once you have picked a figure, then attack individual systems on the car and completely refurbish them. My first choice would be the brakes. A dual master cylinder as mentioned above and possibly a front disc conversion. Front suspension is about $500 for a complete kit. Steering and exhaust will all fall into the budget also. Freshening up the engine will cost a bit more, so plan ahead. Over a few years you will have rebuilt the entire car without putting it out of commission for months on end like so many of us do.
However, if the car is a rust bucket, all bets are off. I was lucky to have found a solid, rust free car that needed a lot of mechanical work. I'm a much better mechanic than body man, so I was able to handle almost all of it myself. The only thing I farmed out was the 5-speed conversion as I didn't have the lifts and hoists needed to do that job easily.
Good luck and enjoy yourself.
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