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1966 Fastback GT
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Discussion Starter #21
I'll start researching some MIGs, I think I've mentally prepared myself for the amount of rust that blasting will reveal, but trying to stay hopeful that some work has already been done at some point in the history of the car, I can tell portions of the pans have been done before and the rear wheel wells look oddly clean and are a different color than the rest of the interior.

I've read a lot about the cowl issues on Mustangs, fingers crossed right now, from what I can see from the outside and from under the dash makes me hopeful that is isn't too bad.

I'll start a build thread now that you all are motivating me.

One question about blasting... should I try to strip off the underside "rubber" coating in places or will blasting take care of that?
 

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A good media job will remove all such materials, but leave the steel surface intact, including what surface finish was applied when the steel was rolled.
 
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You can find a lot of posts here about welders. I would suggest getting a name brand like Hobart, Miller or Lincoln. Not only are these good machines, but most any welding shop will have parts for them. This isn't the case for an Eastwood welder. I went with a Hobart Handler and I am very happy with it. 220V capability is nice, but you won't need it to restore a Mustang. It's all plug welds and stitch welds.
The current Eastwood MIG guns use Tweco style consumables like the big boys. The drive rolls are a different story but I can’t get those locally for a Lincoln either.
 

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If you are concerned about rust after having it blasted . . . I would get a gallon kit of epoxy (like a qt of cat and a gallon of paint) then get some cheap brushes and rollers and just roll and brush it. If it were me I'd hit it with wax and grease remover first. It will be fine as long as you don't store the car out in the sun. Then work on it at you leisure and sand down what you want to work on. Autobody101.com is your friend; head over and read the stickies. Mel
 

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First of all, I'd reconsider whether you are in a position to do a major restoration considering the limited funds. It may make more sence to just sell it as is and then put the cash towards a car that is completely done or atleast a good driver. It will cost a lot more to restote the car versus buying one ready to enjoy now, and you have years of work ahead of you to complete it.

If you are determined to restore that car, I would first get a good understanding of the process by looking at build posts to see the process of how other members did theirs. Mine and another good build theread is posted below.

As far as media blasting, I would not blast that car since the rust is so obvious on the frame rails and other parts of the car. I'd use that money towards a welder and new body replacement parts and epoxy primer. The first thing to do would be to identify all the troubled areas by basic sanding with a stripping disc on a sander. Also, you do not have to strip everything at this point. (For example the entire frame rail needs replaced, why strip it at all? Just replace it. ) Then cut out and replace all rotted pieces. Once you know the body has all good metal and all dents are bumbed to the best they can be, then finish stripping the entire car down to bare (white) metal with 80 grit on a DA sander and apply two full wet coats of a quality epoxy primer. At that point you can start leveling and blocking process with filler and poly primer.

Here's a couple good detailed build threads for your review on restoration the process:

Brian's Coupe (Similar to the amount of rust repair / metal work you have coming up) - Brian's 66 coupe build

Lenny B's Coupe (shows completed process) - Lenny B's 1968 J-Code Coupe Restoration Project
 

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So after reading all of this, here is the path I have been down. First, yes, buy a mig welder. your first project is to pick up an old bed frame and make yourself a welding cart with wheels. Mine has the tank under and the welder sitting on top of the tank. Its a great little project and by the time your done you will have basic skills if it doesn't fall apart when you put weight on it. Watch you tubes and have your friend show you. Buy a 4 or 4.5" grinder with cuttoff and grinding wheels (lots of em). It will erase your welding sins and make things look like better than professional. Welds don't have to be pretty but they do have to have penetration so the peices stay together forever. For instance, when you cut out a rusty area, you are going to cut to good metal. Try welding on that good metal so you get a feel for welding material of that thickness. Cut the peice up so you can weld two pieces together. Don't work onthe car till you have it down. Each thickness of metal has its own characteristics and welding settings. One thickness might not penetrate, another thickness might blow through. NEVER throw away metal any more. Its amazing how often what you need will show up in the scrap bin.

Paint: Primer is hella easy to shoot and all sins can be fixed with sanding. By the time I had primered my first paint job, I knew how to work the gun, lay down a nice finish and was ready for real paint which is much harder. Read the instructions on the paint can, buy good materials and never deviate from the instructions in any way.

Finally, and most important, if you commit to this car (instead of looking for a better starting point) it takes a lot of dicipline to keep working. Its easy to be overwhelmed and stand there staring but just keep your hands moving at all times. you can do little projects in front of the TV like rebuilding a startermotor, cleaning a gauge, rebuilding a carburetor. Some bigger jobs, when I am done, I just put the tools down. That way when I go out again, I can work for half an hour without using that half hour to get tools and materials out. At some point you have to stop looking at the elephant and focus on the tail or tusk. You pick off the little jobs one at a time. There are a thousand brackets that need to be painted for instance...

Hang in there and good luck...
 

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Discussion Starter #28
Thanks everyone.

The car definitely has sentimental value to me. I bought it when I was 14 back in 99 and worked at Goodyear all my high school time to pay her off. It has been in the "restoration" period since 2003, so I'm in no rush, I gave some background in my introduction post.

I'm an affiliate professor so I have two major factors going on. First, I don't make much money a year but second, and most important to me, I have a lot of time off throughout the year (nearly 5 months). So I have the time and can usually save around 3k a year to devote to the project. Not a lot of money, but after cataloging all the parts, I think I'm reusing 75% of the car, probably 95% of the interior is in excellent condition.

I guess the reason why I was leaning towards blasting is the $700 didn't seem too bad, and I was thinking if I do some repairs to the elements I know are bad, then blast it and see there was more to the repair then I thought, I'd have to start over again (Not sure if this is legit, I'd defer to all of the expertise here, just the way my mind thinks). If I blast first, then I could see yes, the entire frame rail on the LR needs to go or it looks good except for the last 10 inches.

I feel comfortable with most elements of the build based on previous jobs and what I did in the Marines except the welding/body work. It just seems like those two elements are an artform, like drywalling... seems easy enough but then the tape always bubbles. HA.

Thanks again for all the info and tips/suggestions. Great forum, I wish I would have found it sooner.
 

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Yeah, your car has a lot of rust. But you'd be hard pressed to find a 66 GT Fastback project car in better shape that wasn't priced very high. These days, Mustang fastbacks are SELLING at very high prices. (Thus, please don't tell the OP what you paid for a fastback in 1987 or 2007. That's completely irrelevant here in 2020.)

So, hang tough, Acoustic. Stay on track and be persistent. It took me many years, but I got there. It's very satisfying to see that the weather is going to be good and hop into my Mach 1 and take a drive. Or, even better, it's fun to plan a longer day trip or overnight trip in a classic car.
 

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Discussion Starter #30
Should have the front suspension and rear end dropped out by tomorrow, then onto the dolly cart and off to media blast to see what I'm working with.

I'm optimistic, I grinded the rear frame rails and besides the last 8 inches on both, seem solid. Fingers crossed. Hopefully in a few weeks I'll have it blasted, then I'll prep and prime and start on the surgery where needed.

762833
 

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If you don't want to spray on primer, a cheaper alternative, good luck!
 
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