Hotting UP

This Week has been the hottest for a long while that we can remember, so unfortunately this is where the road tests take just that little bit longer, especially if the roof is down. We have been doing as lot of service work which has kept us quiet, except when it comes to tea breaks and lunch times where Yogi is still in denial about the drag race rigging going on from last week! The jury is still out on that one by the way. As the weather is so nice we are going to be a little bit lazy on this post as we have had a good customer of ours virtually write this weeks post for us. So a special thanks to Derek Hutchinson who provided the photos and the words. There are some great little stories here and his trips around Europe. Take it away Derek:

NDB986E ’67 Red Mustang convertible

I bought the car in July 2012 from a guy in Newcastle and shocked him by deciding to drive it home to Staines (350 Miles). His nervous smile made me nervous, but I was determined to drive it home.  It was a glorious Friday afternoon and I had the roof down all the way home. Absolutely fabulous feeling and I knew I was in love immediately.

I am no mechanic but I am the son of a very good mechanic and it is surprising how much I remembered of what my father would look for in a car.  So I bought the car after making my checks based upon just my limited knowledge.  Fortunately for me the car has turned out to a very good buy, but soon after my drive home we started to experience serious over heating issues. Fortunately a neighbour recommended Adam at Mustang Maniac. Adam collected the car and discovered the remains of a perforated timing belt in the sump that had clogged up the oil pump but luckily no serious damage had been caused. Adam corrected a number of other minor issues caused by the previous owners ‘DIY’ repairs.

Harrods Breakdown. 2014

2 weeks before setting off on our first major road trip across France, Germany, Austria and Switzerland the car stopped dead outside Harrods in London on a lovely summer’s day. The girls went shopping while I waited for the AA. 2.5 hours. I bought a coffee and had a nap in the car with the bonnet up to demonstrate that I couldn’t move it anywhere.  I was awakened by about 20 Chinese people who had stopped their coach to take pictures of my car.  I even put the bonnet down for them, but was a touch offended when one lady pushed me to one side to get me out of the picture.

Back off to Adam and a new alternator required. At this point my wife began to worry if we were safe to do the trip in my Mustang. “I think we should go in your Mercedes darling” she said. Her friend who is very risk averse had been scaring her about this foolhardy nonsense in such an old car with poor brakes, no seatbelts, roll cage etc, etc.  I am very stubborn and insisted that if we didn’t go in the Mustang then I had no interest in driving across Europe and would not go. Fortunately my wife’s niece Laura was visiting from Colombia and was very excited about this once in a lifetime dreamy trip around Europe in a classic car.  So, off we went.  (MM: loving the picture of the drink on the fender! 🙂 )

French border control Folkestone

Three of us, a full boot and a big case strapped to the boot rack (smart idea by Adam at MM). I really like the bot rack, only problem I couldn’t see through the rear window because the bag was too big.  So I bought a slimmer bag/case from the outlet village in Stuttgart.  I get sick on ferries so we always do the tunnel. Much quicker and convenient.

Quality repair on the go

Day one we drove across France heading for Stuttgart where we have friends and that would be our base.  At our first service station stop after crossing the border into Germany,  the chrome side strip on the car fell off when I opened my door.  It made a tremendous noise for such a flimsy part. Doris’s face (the wife) was a picture, full of dread and fear. This wreck isn’t safe and we are going to break down. I was having none of that silly nonsense, but had to think fast and decide what to do to repair it and keep a cool exterior, even though my stomach was churning and I was  twitching like hell. A quick scratch of the head and the mechanic in me thought ‘gaffa tape’. 5 minutes later we were back on our way with a quality repair “as good as new”.

Laura and I both agreed that the most significant and best part of this incident was that this was now an exciting adventure.  All of our many trips into Europe since have all had that exciting element of adventure. Excellent.

Inside Hitler’s Colosseum

From our base in Stuttgart we drove out to Austria and Switzerland (beautiful countryside and sights). Over a few days we saw the famous alpine castle used in the film Chitty Chitty Bang Bang and we stayed in a lovely hotel in the picturesque town of Hallstatt in Austria where there is a great salt mine to visit and a beautiful lake for a little boat ride.

On our way back to Stuttgart we visited Nuremberg and in particular the museum and visitor centre at Hitlers famous camp where he gave many significant addresses to his troops and their families who attended the massive official and holiday gatherings there. The Nuremberg Rally was the annual rally of the Nazi Party in Germany, held from 1923 to 1938. They were large Nazi propaganda events, especially after Adolf Hitler’s rise to power in 1933.  It is a massive site and just behind the visitor centre (seriously interesting history) Hitler’s followers had started but not finished building a Colosseum for their illustrious leader.  He never got to see it.  The security guards saw me arriving with my car and ushered me to drive my car away from the visitor parking area and asked me to park my car slap bang in the centre of the Colosseum.  I was a little nervous at first until Doris’s friend who lives in Germany interpreted that they want to take pictures of your car in the Colosseum.  They took pictures of themselves and allowed us to take our own pictures, but they wouldn’t allow us to take any pictures of them.  I guess they were worried about getting found out.  Anyway it was very exciting for us and we have a very unique picture as a result.

At one point on this day we got caught in a big storm and even though the roof was up Doris and her friend thought it necessary to put their umbrella up in the back seat of the car to stop the rain getting them wet. Wish I could find the picture. We drove back home through Belgium and stayed at Antwerp. Very nice.

Calais UK border control

This is us on our way back sporting our new low profile case on the boot rack.

Home from first trip safe n sound

This is Doris, Laura and me popping a bottle of champagne to celebrate our fantastic adventure. Notice how that quality mechanical repair lasted the whole adventure. Adam should be proud of me.

We did a trip round France in 2015 but whilst we have lots of pictures from the places we visited we have no pictures with the car in shot.

2016 adventure

In 2016 we had another niece visit from Colombia and she wanted an adventure in the Mustang so we organised another trip in which we covered some different parts of Germany predominately cruising round the Black Forrest (tons of lovely little towns and villages). We had a lovely time but in the middle of the holiday we got caught in a nasty traffic jam on the Autobahn and the auto gear changer became seriously hot, so much so that I was worried that we would get stuck there. So I made the decision to pull into the hard shoulder and drive down it getting off at the next junction.  Getting some cool air circulation seemed to solve the problem. Unfortunately we have since had a number of instances of transmission heating up and loss of drive temporarily.  Adam is on the case and it looks like we need to schedule a new transmission this year.

Going nowhere fast on the Autobahn is a picture of us at a point when the traffic completely stopped for almost an hour without movement.

Crazy gang on the Autobahn is a snap of the group once we got moving again. Me and Angie in the front, Doris Paola and Silvana in the back.

Seriously overloaded.  Doris insisted on buying some garden pots (reasonably heavy) and we also brought Silvana back to England for a weeks break with Paola. I knew we were a bit heavy but it wasn’t until we stopped and got out at the Calais crossing car park, that I realised just how low the rear suspension was (and this was without us in the car). Even funnier, we locked the car and went in for a Starbucks and it wasn’t till we came out again that I realised I had locked the keys in the ignition (over tired).  Luckily it is relatively easy to break into an old convertible.

2018 Hamburg and Lubeck trip

Just one picture from our March trip this year. This one is outside the hotel we stayed in at Munster as we drove over to Hamburg and Lubeck. Sadly the transmission when cold couldn’t engage drive so I had to choose gear 1 or 2 to make a connection before it would engage with drive. We really need that new transmission. Pity we don’t have any pictures of driving in snow at Lubeck. It was a bit scary but also funny.

Some great stories there and well told, we had to make a little adjustment to a couple of little bits as this is a family blog at the end of day. 😉

Thanks again to Derek for taking the time and effort to get all this over to us. 

Customers cars

But before we let that happen here is a lovely ’65 with a beautifully done custom-made red leather interior.  We have serviced the car and give her the now famous Mustang Maniac once over.

Do you have any road trips with your Mustang that you want to share with us? You know what to do – send the details over to us and we get it on the blog for you.

We hope you are enjoying the world cup where ever you may be.

More Finds

We often get ask to do a quick service, as far as we are concerned there isn’t really such a thing as a “quick service” at Mustang Maniac. We can do a speedy oil change, but not a quick service as the reason is fairly simple; Pride. When we do an oil change we automatically look under the car and get nosey as it were. We like to look out for things that need to be done, or will need to be done soon. It’s not that we are trying to push for repairs – far from it, as we as very busy and would need to allocate the proper time to repair what ever we may find. The point is that we look because we want our customers to be safe and enjoy their cars. More often than not we don’t find anything that needs doing, but we still look – just in case. That’s difference between changing the oil elsewhere and changing the oil with us. Our loyal customers know all to well that we often try to talk customers out of changing parts just for the sake of it, or spending money when it’s not required, such is our honesty. Adam will advise what you do or don’t need for the car. As a result of our solid work ethics and honesty, we got our regular customers returning to us along with a growing list of new customers after their visit with us. Whether you are a celebrity client or a not, the service is still the same.

Customers Cars

First this week was a Falcon Sprint in for a service for this little lady and full once over. An unusual colour and in great condition too.

Next up was a 66 Fastback that needed a service, minor tune ups, and a carpet replacement. This is an ideal time to take a look at the important floor pans from the inside out, looking for the usual places of rust, if they need any attention we will advise the customer. We are pleased to say that so far all is well with this little lady too.

More Old Photo’s

We mentioned last week we found some old videos of Yogi and his car, well we also found some pictures from Adam’s winter break in Barbados. As you would expect the scenery was superb, the beaches breathtaking and with cocktail drinks to die for. As always Adam did not disappoint us and came back with great pics from that holiday – pics from a cars museum! Yep this is from Mr Mallalieu’s own private collection of cars and some rare beasts in there too. Who wants to lay around on a sun soaked beach when you can look at cars in Barbados?

DeAgostini Shelby GT500 1:8th Scale Model

We are receiving a number of emails from collectors who are following our build guide of the Shelby GT500. Some of the emails are from people who are asking us for replacement parts, and even the odd complaint about not getting their issues or missing issues. In fact one subscriber to this piece build program even wanted to send their issues back to us for a refund as they were still waiting for missing issues. We also had to subscribe to the whole two-year build process too, just like the rest of the world.

We are in NO WAY affiliated with DeAgostini. 

If you have any issues please contact the directly with the details in the magazines. Any email response from us will only point you in their direction anyway. We had the odd hiccup here and there and nothing that couldn’t be sorted out with a quick phone call or email. We hope this saves you time in the future by contacting them directly.

Have a great Easter and don’t eat too much Chocolate – save some for us when you visit next time. 

A Friend Catches Up…

We feel it’s time to reveal what the special post was going to be all about that we talked about when Adam came back from his SEMA trip this year. Of course it was always going to be car related as you would expect. Last year Adam made arrangements to meet up with his friend Cleo Shelby. This year he has gone one better…

While out in Las Vegas Adam made the phone calls and arranged to meet up with his friend Cleo, this time he introduced his wife Lynn to Cleo who hit it off straight away.

The usual catch up chats were had and as time passed a rare opportunity was offered to Adam & Lynn; lunch at Cleo’s house the next day in Las Vegas! Obviously that is an offer you just can’t refuse. For privacy issues we delayed this post and made sure all was OK with Cleo before we posted.

All photos are exclusive to Adam/Mustang Maniac and the first time on the internet.

We won’t show pictures of the outside of her home except to say it’s pretty special as you would expect. Adam and Lynn arrived on time and was let in through the gated premises and was met by Cleo at the front door. They were given a cup of tea to start with which was shortly followed a guided tour around her home. Adam was in his element looking at Carroll’s possessions and his car related items. Adam did take some photo’s of those, but again we will respect Cleo’s privacy, but we will show you this little item, yep the back of Cobra that is now a seat!

Cleo was happy to chat away to Lynn and Adam for quite a while in one of the reception rooms where Adam took this pic.

Not to disappoint, Cleo kept her promise to show Adam her one of a kind Mustang. Carroll had this car made especially for Cleo which is unique as this car has no limited edition number, but is signed by her husband. Cleo removed the dust cover to reveal a special bespoke Mustang, just one of one!

Cleo behind the wheel of her much-loved car.

When it was time to leave Adam was given a parting gift from Cleo – a couple of drinks from Carroll’s very own collection! a bottle of Carroll Shelby Sonoma County Cabernet Sauvignon 2007 and a bottle of Snake Bite Lager.

The 2007 wine is a rare vintage and very much a collector’s item now. The question you have to ask yourself here is; did he or didn’t he open it? Cheers. 🙂

As part of Adam’s birthday, he was bought this rather cool wine holder, what a fitting way to hold the bottle of wine.

We hope the wait for this post was worth it. Next week we will be back to the cars again.

That Midas Touch

This week we have been getting to grips with a major project to reassemble a gold coloured convertible. With most of these big projects it was started and left incomplete for a various reasons, then she was transported to the home of the Mustang, here at Mustang Maniac to finish it off. The web is full of some great how to projects, but more often than not they tend to leave out the problems you will encounter in one way or another. As a result the projects stalls and can be difficult to complete without the experienced know how or the correct tools. Then we get the inevitable phone call where we are asked help out with the now legendary build quality only we can provide to your project. We suspect that this will be the last big project rebuild for a little while until we have completed some of our own in-house projects that we must complete over the winter months to come.

The engine is the in-line six with one of our very own carbs fitted and she runs fine in her current condition, apart from some tuning that will be required.

The only downside is that with Yogi’s Midas touch to make things work and fit again, you can’t see it was already gold – or was it? 🙂

Gold Coupe:

Not only do we have a gold convertible in, but we also get in a gold coupe at the same time in the same workshop. This car needs a little fettling to sort out some running issues and the geberous helping of  the good ol’ Mustang Maniac TLC.

Under the hood – the bling factor matches the paint job!

Promotional Offer:

We have had our delivery of the Limited Edition of the Mustang Maniac 2018 Calendar. These are a month view with day spaces to write down your important car show events.  Thanks to Lance at Linards for the hard work to get this ready for us by the end of the year. We are going to be giving them away to the first 50 orders over £200 + Vat placed with us. We don’t expect these to be around for long, so if you are thinking of ordering some parts and / or vouchers do it sooner rather than later to grab your calendar. We have some pics of the calendar for you, but once they are gone – there will be no more for this year.

IF you ask nicely, Adam may even autograph one for you, Yogi may stamp his paw print for his elite, “Fan Club” and not forgetting Morgan’s signature that would complete the set.

Vouchers:

Adam also says, as it’s getting near Christmas, we have had some more vouchers in to cater for that “What do I get a man with a Mustang?” The answer is Simple – Let them choose! If you ask Adam nicely he may even let you have a calendar with the Vouchers.

You can them from the WebShop here, or cut and past the link below to your browser:

£10 –  https://mustangmaniac.co.uk/part/74/8051/__10_gift_voucher

£20 – https://mustangmaniac.co.uk/part/74/8052/__20_gift_voucher

Other News:

While Adam was “working hard” at the SEMA show he decided to do the touristy type thing and boarded the High Roller, which is a 550-foot tall, Ferris wheel on the Las Vegas Strip. There are four cabins designated as the High Roller “Happy Hour” that have a bar and a bartender. Once inside, the free drinks start as soon as the doors close. Yes, you can drink all-you-can for the duration of the ride, which takes around thirty minutes. A savvy and quick drinker can get five drinks in during the thirty minute ride. We can neither confirm nor deny that the drinks estimation was consumed. The “last call” for drinks is when you are about three quarters of the way round. By that point it’s a case of “is the wheel moving” or is it you staggering around?

Have you ever wondered what Las Vegas looks like from the air in the middle of a desert?

Exclusive:

We have had the go ahead for special world exclusive that we will bring you soon, possibly a dedicated post in it’s own right.

Here’s a clue:

On The Way

We kick of this week with the continuation of the BRC (Blue Racing Coupe), we promised from last week. The back of the project was the focus this time and we knew there was going to be a fair bit of work to do. With the car up on stands and the fuel tank removed it was easier to what the metal was like inside for a detailed analysis.

 

It became clear that the trunk side drops would need replacing and the rear chassis legs needed to be looked at carefully with the drop sides removed. The bottom of the rear quarters were needing some attention as well, but not in such a bad shape as we first thought.

 

With the metal removed it was easier to see the chassis rails, and they did indeed need replacing in substantial sections to be on the safe side.

 

With the rear light panel also removed it makes life so much easier to work on and measure accurately.

 

The rails were welded into place and treated as per the standard practice. The welding clamps were put in place ready for a dry fitting of the rear panel and wheel arches before the final welding takes place. unfortunately the bottom sections of the wheels arches were in a poor state and couldn’t be saved, the top parts were fine so to save disturbing more than was required, they would be cut and welded into place.

 

The drop panels were fitted and welded after the arches, where the red oxide was applied to protect the metal for years to come. A seam sealer was applied to the joins to give that stock look and provide a layer of protection to these vulnerable areas.

 

The fuel tank was replaced for a finished look. The bumper anchor points also needed some work as they had also gotten a little thin and not as we wanted them to be.

The cars major structural components have now been completed front to back and now it’s a case of getting ready for the stage of the restoration as only Mustang Maniac knows how.

Primrose Coupe:

A recent new customer was so pleased with the work we had done on his car that he decided to take the car on a driving holiday. That car is Primrose as she is known now had a few issues around the engine tuning and the brakes dragging, all which were sorted out without problems, along with a few other minor niggles at the same time. But before she went on her trip a little loving was bestowed upon the paint job at our yard. The car paint was flattened to remove the old surface imperfections and polished to a smooth finish ready for a proper gloss.

 

Some top quality Carnauba wax was hand applied and buffed to that rich gloss finish we all want.

 

We have received an email of the car on her travels through Brittany and she does look great we have to say.

Send us some pics of your car on your travels and we suspect that we would post in on our blog for you.

Start Of A New Year

First of all we would like to wish you all a Happy New Year as this is our first post of the year. Before we get asked again, no we didn’t make any new year resolutions. Over the Holidays we worked hard by making good headway into our stock take. As yet we haven’t finished it all as we need yet more space. The stock levels are pretty accurate compared to the online ordering system. The only thing is that we found lots more stuff we had forgotten about and not as yet on the WebShop, we have stored those lost parts in our new custom-made area, which was another job we hadn’t planned on at the end of last year. The new year for us is nothing different from the old year, the cars we had a couple of weeks ago are still there in the same state that we left them. So let’s get on with the updates for you.

Customers Cars:

We have a 1963 Ford Falcon Sedan Delivery 144CiD three on a tree, which required a little work in order for her to be ready for her MOT so she can get back on the road. As the car has sat in and around the yard nearly for three years we finally got the go ahead to work on her. This is rare example and you certainly don’t see many of them around now days.

The brake rear cylinders had corroded and leaked so needed to be changed as the first job, followed by a full brake adjust and bleed. The engine didn’t run very well at all when she arrived and we narrowed it down to the worn carb. First up was a new battery to turn the car over. We replaced the old carb with an Autolite part and fired her up. She started well and we could check for other issues, the most obvious now being the exhaust manifold blowing.

falcdel9

This was replaced easy enough without breaking any bolts which was a big bonus on a job like this. After she was put back together we could do a preliminary carb air/fuel setup ready for a road test.

We checked under the car and found that the rear exhaust had been “repaired” a few times before. It’s certainly not pretty, but it’s still holding up, for now.

The road test was great for the brakes and manifold, but wasn’t so good for the erratic engine running. We suspect that the car just needs to settle down again, it could even be simply a gone off batch of fuel. We will need to go over the fuel, throttle travel, idle, full timing & mixture settings to make her run right again. It’s not far away, just not how we want it to run. A few more miles on her first after the laid up spell before we adjust anything to much at this point.

Chris’ Mustang Project.

Chris has been working hard over the Christmas break to get the front of his car ready for some new metal and prep what he has to protect it from the elements. We see the inside of the engine has been completed and looks good now with the coats of Red Oxide.

Work has started on the upper cowl and B pillar areas.

Other News:

We have been sent a video of the differences between the USA and European spec Mustangs. I looks like we are definitely getting a raw deal in the UK! Hope you enjoy the video, not sure where it’s come from, but its a good video.

DeAgostini Shelby 1:8th Model Update 

We had a delivery between Christmas and the New Year so we done a little indoor car building. The issues are 53 – 56 and have been updated on the build model page we are doing, also on the main menu, or click here for the link.

shelby1-8th-141

Part 53:

We continue with the inside theme with the first of the rear trim sections which comes in two parts, this being the first. There are two simple parts to screw to the trim, the courtesy light and the latch. With those in place a further three screws holds it onto the floor pan we have been building up over the last few issues.

Part 54:

This issue has the upper part to be attached to the previous lower section. The trim is a single piece with three screws to the rear, of which one is a lot smaller than the other two towards the front of the trim.

Part 55:

This was a single piece to be fitted to the left rear trim and under the rear floor pan. You can see that part has rounded fittings which push into the both the upper and lower parts of the rear trim. We were frustrated here as the parts didn’t align correctly and took a little bending to push them into the holes. Once they were in place a simple three screws to hold it firmly at the underside of the floor pan.

shelby1-8th-148

Part 56:

This part we liked a lot. The fold down shelf has a hinge and this is replicated in metal with very nice detail. There are chrome coloured screws to match the metal hinge which is located by a very slightly of set centre screw and will only fit one way. Once the hinge has been screwed on there is nowhere to attach it at the moment. These hinge screws are really tiny and we hope you have a nice set of screw drivers to cope. We found that our magnetised smaller driver fitted perfectly and made life a lot easier to attach the hinge.

A big thanks to everybody who has emailed us to say they enjoyed the Las Vegas / SEMA trip from last year. It seems as though you enjoyed it as much as we did. We take on board that there was a lot of pictures, but we think it was worth the larger posts. One final note – in these cold weather spells make sure you check your anti-freeze!

Las Vegas – SEMA 2016 Day 4 (Part 2 of 2)

Friday 4th November 2016. The last post for our SEMA 2016 tour and we have a few (OK. quite a few) pics of the SEMA Cruise. The vehicles all drive out from the halls to their collection trucks or just drive them to where they are kept. These fantastic looking cars on the stand with all that polished chrome drive past you so you can hear them as well. The marshals are pretty keen to stop any burn outs or erratic driving should we say. But, there is nothing to stop them revving the engines and pulling away quickly should we say! Chris and Mart stayed for a couple of hours to watch the cruise, it can go on for four or five hours. We tried to grab a varied selection of cars and trucks, so it’s enough of our words and on with the cruise:

Chris and Mart walked back to the house where they meet up with the rest of the guys before setting out for the evening. On the way they called into a shopping mall and was met with a busy Voting station.

After we had all meet up again back at the house it was time to grab our last taste of nightlife in Las Vegas. Adam had arranged to meet some family for a get together over a beer. Then it was off for a proper steak, or should we say a side of a cow!

Our final pic here is Yogi looking over the Bellagio water fountains. We asked him what he was thinking, “I was just thinking what an amazing trip it has been” he replied.

sema-day4-125

We can’t improve on his thoughts and agree with him one hundred percent. It was indeed an amazing trip in more ways than one. All six of us never had a cross word spoken, we laughed all the time, the ripping into each other style of banter was just how it should be, we enjoyed the SEMA show obviously along with the other attractions we visited. This trip for many reasons will stay with us for such awesome memories.

Thanks to Adam for making it all happen, from the rest of the Mustang Maniac crew.

Thank you for following our journey to Las Vegas.

Same again next year? Oh, yeah!