Vintage Mustang Forums banner

1 - 20 of 131 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
206 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
I was inspired by this thread: http://forums.vintage-mustang.com/track/1081554-autocross-primer.html to become active with this forum since I've been a member since I believe '09 and have a grand total of 6 posts to my name!

Long time lurker 6th or 7th time poster. It was recommended in another thread after posting the following photo that I start a build thread. I'm hesitant to do so as it would show the world how little I've gotten accomplished on a project started over 15 years ago.


Just a little background; I started autocrossing in '77 with a nice 66 coupe that was primarily a street car. As things go it slowly became a gutted out race only project that by then was being regularly raced in Texas Region events along with several trips to Nationals in Salina and Topeka until I decided to build a new tub with a proper cage into which I would transfer the suspension/driveline into once the body and cage were completed.

As often happens with a slowly evolving project scope creep set in and I decided to go to a coilover 3 link style rear suspension and ultimately hoped to find someone to help me build a front suspension more conducive to dicing the cones than the factory front suspension on the car. Although I had lowered the A-arms and tried various springs, swaybars, etc. the truth was that the factory based suspension just wasn't going to take me to the next level. Since I am not an engineer and could not find someone able to design, build and install the "ultimate" front suspension for me, the project languished for several years.

During this time I moved to the Indianapolis area and thought “Hey cool! The racing capital of the world should allow me to find someone to get my project back on track!” I found that to be a not quite accurate statement but before I could start moving forward again life kicked in and back burner’d the project yet again. Fast forward to about 6 years ago and I had just discovered Ride Tech and after talking to them decided that they had exactly what I was looking for.

So for the past several years UPS and Fedex have been making fairly regular deliveries and the pile of boxes eventually hid the “racecar”out of sight out of mind neatly at the back of the shop. Recently when another project stalled due to lack of fundage and the “honey do” list had been largely vacated I felt it time to inventory and sort the boxes of parts, dust off the racecar and make it a point to have it operational at least to the point it could move under its own power by January 1 2017.

So here it will come to pass; I will attempt to stay the course with planned work sessions on the car and photographic updates of my “progress” as it happens. I’ll warn you right now though that I am no fabricating genius and some of my “skills”are rusty at best. If you happen to see something you don’t agree with or have a better idea during the course of the next several months by all means speak up!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,137 Posts
You can't just tease us with a single picture! lol
Need some details on the suspension....and don't worry about the fab skills. I have been working on my build for 3-4 years now and occasionally one of my early welds just screams at me until I have to go back and redo it.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
206 Posts
Discussion Starter #4
You can't just tease us with a single picture! lol
Need some details on the suspension....and don't worry about the fab skills. I have been working on my build for 3-4 years now and occasionally one of my early welds just screams at me until I have to go back and redo it.

More to follow but BOS! (Boss over shoulder):notamused:

My work is done here ;o)...

Check this out for motivation: http://forums.vintage-mustang.com/9288898-post22.html

Hang in there, remember, run your (or the wife's) daily driver in the mean time so you gain the skills you will need to take advantage of the monster you are building...

M

(In a low whisper) I do have a nice 540i M Sport that takes the twisties quite well!:biggrin:
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
406 Posts
I can see a major problem right off the bat - those skinny little front tires! :) hahaha

Looks like an awesome project! I bought my project about a year ago and just now got it down onto 4 wheels - it takes time and cash to make them go, so keep at it!

Looking forward to seeing progress and more pics!

-- Mike
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
206 Posts
Discussion Starter #8
Been a little busy but here it is in its current state; hanging from the gallows!! Being "smarter" than I used to be I don't like crawling around under cars unless it's unavoidable. I found it necessary to replace the strut rod brackets and came up with this solution that allows me to layout and weld them while standing up instead of laying on a creeper. Of course you haven't lived until you get hot welding slag in your ear!!


 

·
Registered
Joined
·
206 Posts
Discussion Starter #12
Don't tell me you're working on a car only held up by a chainfall hung from a rafter ? Holy pancake Batman !!

Edit: I suppose it's strong enough, but I don't like relying on any single device.

Don't worry SW, there are 2 chainfalls up there if that helps. I've worked in industrial and airline maintenance for several years and have had "acts of God" pounded into my head for years. I thought about fabbing up some jackstands but they'd be in the way. So if my better half comes on here some day and has "bad news" you can say I told you so!:wink:


Don't worry, taken in the spirit it's given. I'm fairly certain it's safe although I don't let my GF under it; one of us needs to survive to cash in the insurance!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
206 Posts
Discussion Starter #13 (Edited)
Strut brackets installed! I've also replaced and upgraded the core support, I installed one for a '67 as it is laid out for a larger radiator. It's essentially a direct swap although you will have to install the 67 front apron on the right side because the battery box layout is different and will leave a largish gap between the core support and fender apron if you don't. The shop is currently a mess due to some remodeling going on, it really isn't THAT crowded working in there!


 

·
Registered
Joined
·
7,792 Posts
Strut brackets installed! I've also replaced and upgraded the core support, I installed one for a '67 as it is laid out for a larger radiator. It's essentially a direct swap although you will have to install the 67 front apron on the right side because the battery box layout is different and will leave a largish gap between the core support and fender apron if you don't. The shop is currently a mess due to some remodeling going on, it really isn't THAT crowded working in there!


Growing up in the deep South, I'm used to setups like that picture. Doesn't mean it still doesn't scare the crap outta me :grin2:
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
206 Posts
Discussion Starter #16
O.k. Problem time. Started dummying up the Ride Tech components and the aluminum bearing retainer shown below is "supposed" to fit up into the space where the rubber strut rod bushing formerly lived. The problem comes into play when the replacement strut rod brackets that Scott Drake says "These OEM-style, direct-fit replacements are constructed from high-quality sheet metal to factory specs to insure proper positioning". Unfortunately the portion of the bracket that the strut rod slides thru is quite a bit beefier than the original! The bearing retainer is close to 2 3/4 inches o.d. and there is only 2 1/2 inches of clearance so out comes the die grinder to clearance the bracket for installation!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
206 Posts
Discussion Starter #17 (Edited)
Well about 30 minute with the harbor freight die grinder that replaced the 30 year old black and decker grinder and the strut brackets are "clearanced" enough to get the aluminum retainer into place. The shiny areas show the required clearancing.








Now the retainers will slide in between the sides of the bracket but still need to go up another 3/16 of an inch. I haven't decided if I'll "clearance" the bracket at the top or if I'll mill the retainers to fit into the space. I hate to compromise the strength of the brackets any further but given they were more than twice the thickness of the original it should be o.k. either way I go with it.


 

·
Registered
Joined
·
206 Posts
Discussion Starter #19
Seems like it would have been better to cut flats on the retainers. Hard to tell by the pics, but did you weeken those brackets by thinning them down in those areas?

I would have preferred to cut flats on the retainers but the mate to the one shown that goes on the backside has threaded holes and cutting flats would have left little structure or strength around the bolt holes. Given that the portion I clearanced is at least 3 times thicker than the original I believe it will be alright although as an added strengthener I am going to fully weld the inner bracket to the outer bracket vs the spot welds currently in place.


 

·
Registered
Joined
·
206 Posts
Discussion Starter #20
Give myself a little bump here to make the thread easier to find; I ended up machining flats on the retainers as patrickstapler suggested but unfortunately it won't help. My concern in doing that is that there wouldn't be enough "meat" left in for the fasteners to thread into played out somewhat. Where it made a difference is on the bottom side of the retainer where the hole needs to be drilled thru the strut bracket there isn't enough "meat" in the strut bracket for the hole. I'll add a picture in a day or two that better explains it but the short version is that the Ride Tech Strong Arm suspension will not work with aftermarket strut brackets. I'm hoping I can find a serviceable set of original brackets at the all Ford swap meet in Columbus April 4 thru 6.

In the meantime the addition of hydro boost brakes to the 63 Galaxie is moving along quite well!
 
1 - 20 of 131 Posts
Top