Cunning As A Fox

The week started of very well with the arrival of the freshly painted ’69 back from the paint shop, the down side is we needed to make room for her as all the spaces we had lined up were all taken with mostly service type of work this week. We promised last week that there would be an update on the Fox body LED conversion we have bespoke, one-off, custom-made from the ground up, or perhaps we should call it the mark 1 version for now.

Park & Pic.

This ’66 Coupe is owned by Adam D. who has only had this little lady for a number of weeks. Adam bought this car in to us the previous weekend for a look over as he wasn’t sure what to make of her. So both the Adams took her out for a road test and the verdict was made. She was booked in with us during the week for a good old sort out and little loving care that ONLY Mustang Maniac can provide.

The car was running a little rough on her very first visit, so we had an impromptu air filter change and a default setting carb tuning, all on a Saturday morning while the mandatory cup of tea was to be had. So if the phones were not being answered – here is a perfect example why.

Once we had the car in this week, we could have another good look over her, the car is not in a too bad at all and quite clean underside. The main concern was that the front drum brakes had been converted to a discs, nothing wrong with that of course. But, there is a problem when the conversion was left with the original single pot master cylinder and booster in place. As a result there was not enough back pressure to keep the pads from dragging on the discs. As a result this was slowing the car down, using more fuel to get going and making things hot. You can see the old single pot master cylinder here at the back right which should be a dual version with disc brakes.

There was a smell of petrol from the back and it was obvious that the fuel tank had a crease in it, from what looks like it was backed over something, which was in turn seeping fuel slowly, and certainly required a new one. The car was up on the ramps fuel tank was swapped out, and the work started on the master cylinder change over to the correct dual cylinder that should be used, the brakes were bleed and properly adjusted all round. The brake pedal was adjusted to the new cylinder push rod. This in turn highlighted the hand brake that was also needing adjusting correctly now too. The car had a little quirk where the gear shifter needed a little wiggle to start and the transmission lever would not stay in Park. The safety cut out and the transmission selector lever connected correctly and adjusted, tested and all was now fine. Next up to be sorted out was the engine running, starting with the spark plugs out and the new ones gapped and refitted. Holley default settings were dialled in and the fine tuning started from there. The timing was out and needed resetting which helped a great deal for the initial running and idling. Next was the air/fuel mixture carb settings, Yogi demonstrated his dark art of engine tuning by feel, response and sound. It’s OK setting the mixtures to “what the book of words says”, but, “if it doesn’t run right what’s the point? All engines are different,” said the bear. Once the engine was now the best it could be for the garage setup, it was time for a full road test. The car came back with a small list of final tweaks for the carb setting under load, and that the speedo was reading 10mph to slow which required a new speedo gearing to fix that. The brakes were now spot on and bedding in nicely, but now we had a little wheel balancing to do to get rid of the wobble at speed. Another road test and all was good in the retest.

In fact the Owner Adam D. sent us a pretty awesome email, as he was well pleased. I’m sure he won’t mind sharing this little clip with you;

“The work that you guys at Mustang Maniacs have done on the car was phenomenal – differences you have made since you got it and did a couple of days work, pulls and accelerates noticeably better – absolutely beautifully and even sounds better.  The brakes also seem to work so much better and it handles and steers so so much better in the bends and straight – no more steering wobble or unnoticeable !!! Petrol consumption is also so much better – really very noticeable indeed.”

We are pleased that we have another happy customer who can really enjoy their car which is just how it should be.

Fox Body LEDs

We promised this last week so here it is; A new acquisition Fox Body Mustang was bought into us, the requirement was to have some flashing amber LEDs to make it UK road legal keeping the stock look of the lenses. Now we don’t have a ready-made kit for that, so it was time for Adam and Yogi to design and make a bespoke set of LEDs. The guys are keeping this one a secret on how they done it for now, so there is no circuit boards allowed to be shown, but we can show you the results.

The rear assemblies were taken apart to expose the lenses. We think they look great.

Before the custom Mustang Maniac Fox lights were fitted they were tested off the car and here is that test.

The owner is one very happy chap too.

’69 Rebuild New Paint

We have had a bare metal respray back from the paint shop and now ready for that rebuild. There is just something magical watching a car unloaded with her new paint. This is going to be a cracking looking car once she is done!

But before we can start work on her – we need to clear a couple of cars out first. We are looking forward to this build.

Park & Pic

A much calmer week with projects being continued and some good ol’ maintenance on some cars instead of large projects. We also had an idea this week which was triggered by David Frost a customer of ours who took his ’66 Coupe out for a run down to us, just so he could spend some of his Birthday money with us. He took a photo of his car outside our offices and posted it on our Facebook Group Chat Page,”Mustang Maniacs,”click here for the link or the pic on the right menu. What was that little idea? We thought it would be a good idea when you bring your car down to us, take a photo outside with our sign, let us know and we will post it on the blog for you and add it to a “car autograph page” or “visitor” page if you like. If you have any old pics while you were with us that we can post for you, let us know with the date (if you want) and we will add it to the new section. So here we are then, the first car of the “Park & Pic” section which can be found under the “Customer Cars / Park & Pic” or click here for the quick link.

David Frost’s ’66 Coupe looking very nice.

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Customers Cars:                        

We had a nice little black ’69 Fastback in Yogi’s workshop that needed the usual maintenance type stuff doing to it. We swapped the shocks out all round, new spring perches on the front and new twin exhaust from the manifolds back. A new radiator, thermostat and to check the head gasket too.

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Gulf Stream Aqua’ 65 Coupe

Just quick update on this one, the decision was made to take of the vinyl stripes and spray the new ones on. this will mean no edges to feel on the paint when cleaning. Also the scoop will be sprayed to match the stripes and blend it all in. A little way to go still but progress is being made.

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There has been plenty of work going on around the Lime Green Mach1, but most of that work is under and behind the dash as we tidy up of the loom work so far. There isn’t much to see at the moment in that respect which is why we haven’t posted any pics this week.

Remember; send us your pics for the new “Park & Pic” section, we will even post them even if the pic don’t have the Mustang Maniac sign on the picture to be fair. 🙂

New Arrivals

This week as been very, very busy so we would like to start of with congratulations to Jayson & Pamela who have had a new arrival today weighing in at a health 9lb 9oz. As yet the new arrival has no name, but this is Adam’s second grandson. Rumor has it that Adam will be swapping out a spanners for some nappies soon!

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The week has been seriously busy and we haven’t been able to get to the phone and as a result we have had a few emails saying “you don’t answer the phone”. We would like to apologise in that respect, but as Adam has been away from the offices collecting and delivering cars this week in the lorry, organising and dispatching the stock he can’t always answer the phone. But, a lot of the recent enquiries have been regarding stock information and compatibility, we try to avoid people having to ring us up for this type of query, so try and put all the part compatibility on the Webshop along with the current stock availability. We try to help out where we can, so if you have any other queries you can email adam@mustangmaniac.co.uk or use the contact sheet on this blog, complete the contact section(s) and we will get back to you as soon as we can.

Stock:

We have taken a delivery this week of a the ’64 – ’68 windscreens with top tints, these shall update out stock levels on the WebShop as soon as we can. Those waiting for the screens – you will have them very shortly.

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We have had our first batch of “Enos” stickers delivered to us (thanks to Lance). And we have started to label up the budget stock. Here we have our “Enos” radiator, not as good as normal top of the products, but it’s aimed at the careful Mustang restorer, or for the restoration trade who could well be selling on the car.

The WebShop will be getting its own “Enos” section soon for those looking for a bargain.

We have a couple of new arrivals in the office downstairs, one we have had for a while now, but we needed the space. So the Harley Davidson 100th Anniversary Limited edition is now in the office.

The other new edition is not a spectacular yet, it’s Jayson’s fish tank. He is currently prepping the tank ready, he couldn’t wait to put something it though.

To watch the fish you have to sit on something, so we have new office chairs as well.

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Of course we have a picture of Adam trying out the new office furniture and working environment for comfort. He has his ever faithful guard dogs with him.office2

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Oh that was after he raided the drinks fridge!

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Customers Cars:

Another new delivery into the yard this week was this rather impressive 1956 Ford Mercury Montclair which has just landed into the UK. We have been asked to sort this little lady out and make her road legal. We will have to sort the brakes, suspension and the engine. This is not your standard Lincoln 368cci “Y” block engine, this has been swapped out with a rather familiar 302 small block. So we will totally at home with this one.  We have been searching around a got a little information here about the car and its history we hope you enjoy.

The Mercury Montclair was produced by Mercury from 1955 to 1957, the M-E-L Division of Ford Motor Company 1958 to 1959 and by the Lincoln Mercury Division of the Ford Motor Company from 1964 to 1968. Its appearance followed the concept show car in 1954 called the Mercury XM-800.

The vehicle name was introduced in 1955 and applied to Mercury’s premium automobile line. Ford historians are at a loss as to where the name originated; the consensus is that it’s taken from the upper class community of Montclair, New Jersey. For 1955 and 1956, Montclairs featured Mercury’s best appointments, extra chrome trim, and different two-tone paint combinations to set them apart from other Mercury products. 1956 was the year that Ford introduced its Lifeguard safety program, and the Mercury Montclair came standard with a deep-dish steering wheel to help protect the driver from the steering column, safety door locks, a breakaway rear view mirror, and optional seat belts and padded dashboards. The dash was redesigned with a new three-tier instrument panel.

The Montclair model line also included the Sun Valley, which featured a Plexiglas “bubble” over the front half of the roof section. While futuristic cars were often featured with clear glass tops on the 1950s, consumers rejected the tinted glass roof Sun Valleys (only 1,500 were produced in 1955) because of the heat buildup in the interior of the vehicles. Following lower sales of the Sun Valley for 1956, the version was discontinued for 1957. In 1957 the Montclair name was pushed down market by the introduction of the Turnpike Cruiser. A new frame was used. Nevertheless it could now be ordered with the same 368 cu in (6.0 L) Lincoln Y-Block V8 that came standard on the Turnpike Cruiser. Fuel economy was not to bad 16.2MPG at 50 mph.

We just love this car and it’s a great place to be, the windscreen curves around you before the door is shut.

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The interior has lost its original trim but has had a 70’s (we think) retrim. It’s not out of keeping and works.

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Yogi has been finishing of the floors in the Rusty ’70 that is not looking so rusty now. The back end looks to be the next on the list for the big can of whoop-ass to be opened up on it.

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We had started the car up to sort out the running problems and made some tweaks to the carb, unfortunately those tweaks were not quite enough to hold a steady idle when off choke. We did a quick strip down of the carb to have a look to what the problems were . We found it had a few issues inside with corrosion and the seals most showing signs of starting to have their own issues. The fact it didn’t look to great, the cost of the repair kit and the time to do it all we spoke to Mart and fitted a new one on it.

The car was taken to the Geo workshop where aligned the suspension and steering up.

Once the geo was done we decided to have a little fun with Mart this week, we hid his car in a storage workshop and not in the main workshop. He had treated himself to one of our car covers and we stuck one of our new “Enos” stickers on it for him. It was a real treat to his confused face walking into the workshop and his car was gone. He knew we had moved it for the geo obviously, but where? He eventually found it in our storage workshop, his comments when he spotted the “Enos” sticker  on his cover we couldn’t possibly print here on a family blog! But, it was shared enjoyable moment and we do think we saw a tear from his laughing.

He opened the bonnet and was well pleased with what we had done, so we were forgiven in an instant and gave us the cookies he bought down with him.

Hopefully this week things will calm down a bit and things get back to normal. Somehow we doubt it though. 🙂

Waiting Around

This week has been a frustrating week with not being able to concentrate on any one thing for a period of time. For those that don’t know Adam also runs a recovery company, and sometimes to help out Adam has been on the road doing some recovery when needs must. Most of the time our Mustangs are picked up and delivered back to customers in our covered lorries or recovered on the flat backs if that is what’s required. We have provided this extra service for a long time now and works well, it can save miles on the cars, pick up dead cars or transport them for safety reasons. This week our own Mustang Maniac truck was called to a mission of mercy to recover a car that had got stuck following a SatNav. Although we like our SatNavs, if you follow them to the letter they can lead you to some random places and this was no exception.

All hands to the pumps can obviously have benefits and down sides, the up side is we can help those that need our services, the downside is that we are not always in the office to take technical phone calls. So in that respect we apologise if you have tried to get us without success, but sometimes we take our overalls off and put on our suits of shining armour on to save the day.

We will go a little more off piste now as it were, but a similar incident where the sister company LAR were called out to a second Sat Nav failure this week. This time it was a sewage lorry that got stuck in some “mud” should we say, the lorry tried to turn around but got bogged down so we had to pull it out, not a nice job but somebody had to do it. We also had one of our newer recovery vehicles at Trucks Fest this weekend, if you are there pop by and say hello.

Anyway, back to Mustangs now; we often have cars in that require finishing off due to difficulty of the task, problems or time constraints which we fully understand of course. The owner of this stripped down shell had been working on her for a while now and wanted it to be painted by us. The car has been previously prepped and primed which now sits waiting for the next stage in the paint process. We did have to replace a front panel and she should be ready to go to the paint shop as soon as there is a free slot.

A newish 289 engine needed some serious diagnostics as it was making all sorts of noises and rattles. The whole car was transported here for us to investigate. This was a pretty simple one diagnose – no oil pressure, when we say no oil pressure – there was none, it didn’t even register, so we quickly shut her down. We took the engine out and removed the sump of and could see there was the optional race oil guard fitted which was nothing to do with the issue we have now. We investigated the crank and the more delicate parts for damage where we could see that it had all worn away and was now  small block scrap unit. We are not sure the full reasons why yet, but our first suspect could be a faulty oil filter, it’s rare but it can happen.

We strongly recommend to pay the extra few pounds to get a good quality oil filter, you may save a small amount short-term, but cost an awful more lot long-term!

Acapulco ’66 Coupe

The work on the mechanics has moved inside , Quite s specialised job of fitting a head liner in place. This has been fitted now and the fold marks will soon fall out when the head liner bows pull it a little tighter over time. Now you are getting a little taster of the inside colour scheme.

At Mustang Maniac we have parts to hand most of the time which are just collected from stock and noted on the system for invoice. Some of those parts can be stored in other areas that are locked away and can take a few minutes to locate. To try and work efficiently we aim to have the parts we need for the next day sourced from stock the evening before, that way we can just get on with the work when we get to the workshops in the morning. When we said to hang on a minute while we get the parts, we didn’t think we took that long at the end of a very busy day ! 🙂

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Twins

Walking past our storage garage where a coupe of cars that are waiting to be collected by their owners, we noticed that couple of them looked amazing in the afternoon sun. Same colour, but two very different schools of thought.

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Given the choice which one these twins would you go for, the all time classic fastback or the lesser seen coupe?

Rust in Piece

We are pleased to say that the Rust in Piece is now finished and awaiting her owners collection. The car went for her first MOT in the UK and passed with flying colours. The car drives beautifully now and is a glorious sunshine cruiser, no outrageous exhaust note, just plenty of power from a single exhaust pipe that is whisper quiet. The owner is going to love driving this little lady around, a real pleasure to see her completed and another rare old Mustang is back on the road.

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Acapulco ’66 Coupe

We are turning our attention to the full restoration ’66 Coupe again this coming week, we have had a couple of dry run of fittings of the exhaust to her during the past week. We are having to custom build this exhaust to fit the big 3″ headers that it already has. The bore of the pipe we are using is the recommended big maximum of 2 1/4″ pipes into Twin Flowmaster 40 Series Delta Flow muffler boxes.

The fittings are bare metal and so needed to be prepared so we got round to doing that while we waited for the pipes to come back. You did read that correctly, exhaust bending is not something we do for a large-bore exhaust pipes, but we do tend to cut and weld our own custom systems to fit. For this exhaust system Adam got hold of his mate, “Mike the Pipe” who has various machines that he uses to bend and shape various sizes of pipe work for their customers top quality, one-off exhaust systems.

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The pipes were marked up on the car in marker pen from a template to note the centre of the bend and by how much was need. An art form in itself to make the big bore pipes bend without kinks and still make them look good. We got them back and as you can see the amount of work required for a single section of the pipe, they are a work of art in their own rights.

The pipes were pretty much spot on only need a few minor pulls on a pipe section to line them up so far. We are looking to make our own step down fittings to these newly made pipes.

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The owner turned up on Saturday and was around more than happy to his hands dirty and help with final dry fitting. Yogi was on hand to show him how to cut the pipes and expand the turned down tips to fit the big pipes. We even got him cleaning and spraying clamps for his home-made exhaust.

We also aim to have the head liner in this week along with the transmission pipe work to the radiator.

Souvenirs:

After the holiday things have settled back down again and we made time to put up Twin souvenirs from our epic road trip across America.

When it rains we look at the flags and think of the hot sunny days again.

Our New Mustang Forum

A very exciting week for Mustang Maniac, behind the scenes for the last few weeks we have had a small group of guys working hard on our all NEW Classic Mustang Forum. I would like to say a very big Thank You to ALL of the guys involved who have made this possible. I might even let you have some one of my Jaffa Cakes!

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Mustang Maniac are moving with the 21st Century and we can hardly believe it ourselves, firstly there was the Website which has now evolved into our ultra efficient WebShop with Gift Vouchers functionality. Next up was the blog, where we share our work, tips, photos, projects, news and hopefully a little fun. Now we have our next big step the MM “Forum”. This forum will be old school Mustangs based, where you can share ideas, problems, solutions and help your fellow Mustang enthusiast out. We will be on there too posting and answering where we can and we have the time. The Forum’s motto is very simple; “Be Nice” as all posts will be monitored. On the Forum we are not interesting in what you have for sale such as, “2 buckets of Lego £5” or “super spin abc washing machine, 15 years old £30”. Etc. But if you have a 351 Cleveland for sale – then we want to see that. If you have taken your ride to a show we want to know about it, if you planted a pack daffodils in auntie Mary’s flower pot, then we don’t want to know. The whole idea is that we want to engage and help owners of the Classic Mustangs era ’64 to ’70. Special features could well be added to the Forum depending how it takes off in the future, if you have some ideas of  what could go on the forum, let us know via a message or email. Of course we know there are other forums out there, we even belong to some of them, some very good, some not so good and some of the others just want to be chat site or be negative.

We like to think our Forum is a clean modern looking environment, made by us, just for you – because you asked.

Our Forum is free for all to join from all over the word, unlimited posts, unlimited help or guidance, but above all, a network of enthusiasts who share your interests. Make the forum yours and get out of it what you want. The new Forum is held on our own servers and will be secure and that means; No spam, No pop up adverts, No third party pain. This is an evolving forum that has just been released to the world, hopefully the Forum will look after itself going forward and be a big success. We have also added a menu button at the top of the blog to allow you to jump straight there.

Welcome to our Mustang Maniac Forum, click here or cut and paste the link below to your browser and add as a bookmark.

https://mustangmaniac.co.uk/forum/

Some screen shots.

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We look forward to seeing you there.

“Rust In Piece” Convertible update.

This little lady is turning out to be another popular featured car. The front end has been now been rebuilt, with emphasis on details of cleaning the welding up and making the repairs disappear. The metalwork has now been prepped with primer ready for top coat. Such a difference now compared to how she came in. We pride ourselves in making these rusty old cars into fabulous motoring works of art again. This lady will live on for another 50 years at least now.

The floor pans have now been cleaned up.

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The back of the car has now had the light panel refitted ready for the rear valance to be fitted.

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Customers Cars

The ’66 Coupe restoration has now hit the slow part, wires! This will take a few days to sort out, but these things can’t be rushed If you want a good looking job.

The Yogi Fan Club

Yes last week had a little fun and mentioned Yogi, it’s true we have been asked who he is and this week a couple of emails to say the cartoon of Yogi was funny, but can we have a real picture. As ever we oblige and we found a picture he has on his own avatar and forum pages!

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We would like to point out that any similarities of the picture and Yogi are intentional, except that our Yogi don’t have a green hat!

Back To Work

First post of the year so it has to start with Happy New Year of course, we hope you all had a great Christmas. While we are on the subject of Christmas we would like to share our amusing gift of the year. We won’t say who bought Adam the T-shirt, but it has been his favorite item of clothing since. Anyway moving swiftly along!

 Customer’s Cars:

We have had a customer’s car come into us which he has bought for his partner as a present. The car needs a little tender loving care and an MOT of course. Most people tend to get a puppy or a kitten for Christmas, but this lucky lady owner got a 5.0 v8 Pony. The interior is in excellent condition and the paint should buff up just fine. We are having a look over the underside and mechanics for any work that may need doing. From what we have seen – so far so good. We don’t mean things like broken headlight etc. as that is a simple fix before anybody mentions that!

For the last proper post before our Christmas break Mart’s Coupe (from one man and his Mustang), had just come back from paint as an early Christmas present. Yeah we gave him a surprise as it’s always nice to see the smile on the owners face when they get their pride and joy back. this was a little different as a lot of the hard work was all done by hand, and the fruits of that labour intensive job are wheeled back into a work shop. As promised we have a few more pics of his car taking her to a temporary new home.

As Mart’s Coupe was returning we swapped it out for our ’67 fastback shell that was ready for another top class paint job. The customer has told us what colour it will be, but we will keep that a secret just for now, only untill it comes back completed of course. We will of course post some updates of this one being completed too.

To sum up the end of the year, we were busy with projects and the WebShop is getting busier all the time. We have already had some of the vouchers used online and so far they have proved very popular. The emails So much so that we are going to have to create a dedicated dispatch area as the office is no longer suitable. That is in the process at the moment and we will bring you pictures of that soon. We tidied up the yard yet again which seems to be never-ending job at the moment, but during the clean and tidy up we just happened to look over to one of our workshops and took a couple of pictures of our customer’s car at different times of the day. Very sinister looking in fact!

Video:

We have uploaded a new video to our YouTube account of the 1964 Ford Mustang production line. The video for Martha Reeves and the Vandellas – Nowhere To Run was filmed at the plant, due to production requirements Ford refused to stop the production for the video. The result was during the 2 minutes and 45 seconds it took to film Ford made a new car! click here to go straight to the video or click on the YouTube logo below for our channel. We have taken some screen shots of the video for you to look at here. It’s worth watching just for the great song anyway.

Quick link to our YouTube Channel click the logo below.

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