A little Rattled

This week we have the usual influx of the annual MOTs and car services we expect. We are always glad to see our loyal and returning customers back to us, and the customers know that they will get a top quality workmanship and quality service from people who care about their cars with no-nonsense advise. We pride ourselves here at Mustang Maniac on the fact our customers are always happy.

Park & Pic

Continuing from the above a long-term customer Bob who called in to pick up his car after the MOT and a general service. Unfortunately we forgot to take a more formal picture under the Mustang Maniac sign. So we managed to grab a few last-minute pics of Bob leaving, also the pic with his hand up was the wave goodbye, and nothing to do with hiding his face!

Sad News:

We have received some very sad news from our friends at the Ford Heritage Workshop. Colin Gray, a much respected team member has sadly passed away after a short illness. Colin’s knowledge of ‘all things Ford’ was truly outstanding but he will be remembered, by those fortunate enough to know him, as a great person willing to help anyone and a true inspiration. He will be sorely missed.

The team at the Ford Heritage Workshop are very good friends of Mustang Maniac and we are extremely proud to have been able to help them with parts and advice when they restored the Ford Motor Company 65 Mustang Fastback.

Mustang Maniac would like to send our sincere condolences to Colin’s family at this very sad time.

Customer Cars:

We have in the workshop a nice ’68 390 GT which is a nice resto-mod as Yogi likes to say.

The car was brought in with the customer saying there are some annoying rattles and knocks etc. So we were tasked with curing the issues. These are often more difficult than it sounds as it’s a long process of elimination; road test, adjust or fix, then more checks and repeat. This little lady has been modified with what looks to have been a race car set up, a very unusual set up as there are no leaf springs, instead just supports, bars and linkages!

Front end with no shock towers and the adjustable suspension.

The rear end with adjustable suspension and the four point suspension.

So far we have sorted the obvious creeks and groans out but, as there are so many bushes and connections we need to make sure they are all within tolerances and just keep testing until they are all fixed. So far the bear is happy!

Shelby GT500 1:8th scale DeAgostini model update. 

Here we are with an update we have been waiting for; the actual body shell. The parcel was large and guessed this was the shell.

The other three issues are the two fenders and the front radiator panel which holds them together across the front, in turn the fenders are screwed to the body shell by the cowl section.

We think that once the car is completed that we are going to actually wax and polish this paintwork. We would go so far as to say it’s better than some of the past efforts we have seen on the much larger real thing!

With the fenders attached this pretty much gives the overall appearance of the model.

We know it’s only a model, but this is a point for the build. There are just two screws each underside of the cowl section to hold the fenders in place. It took a total of fifteen minutes to build but what a massive step forward all of a sudden. We have updated the main page for whole model build.

We finish with a selfie photo-bomb by the Yogi, Adam even found time to play with some filters on his phone too, we kinda like it cartoon style. 🙂

Ripping Up The Rule Book

This week we can’t fail to mention the weather, which has seen a promise of more to come in the UK. We are happy to see a period of nice weather for a change instead of the normal rain, with the on set of the nice weather we have managed to convert the old car storage areas into a new “large and heavy parts” dispatch area. As a result of Mustang Maniac needing more space and storage areas for a slightly different car! More on that later a little further down.

Park & Pic

This week we had a very nice rare car come into us with a minor leak on the steering. We fixed it with no problems as normal, and the customer arrived to take her away. We give you the legendary Shelby GT500, nothing else needs to be said!

 

More Stock

It’s a well-known fact that for your Mustang parts, Adam is your man with is ever-expanding WebShop. But, what is not quite as well-known is that Mustang Maniac stocks an ever-increasing rage of ’64 – ’66 Falcon parts too, so much so that Adam is now “stock piling” Falcons cars now to match the stock levels.

The latest set of Mustang parts in stock are these performance strut rod parts which have now arrived in the latest container. They are super high quality and an awesome racing part upgrade or just for bragging rights.

Drag Racing

Another known fact is that Yogi takes his Mach1 down the Santa Pod 1/4 mile drag strip, wrecking a set of tyres each time, but the bear was not happy with his last eleven second run. The reason was the will spin being unable to get all that power down to the tarmac. To stop that Yogi bought himself an over drive and under drive unit. Yep you read that right “Under Drive”. This gearbox allows you to select the lower gear to launch of the line that much quicker. The gearbox will allow you to change gears for each of the main gears which gives you in effect six main gears now. Yogi has fitted it and loves it, so much so that he has melted his speedo cable, we need to think of a way to fix that, we have a plan. Here we have some instructions for the unit to show just how it works. The new AutoDrive is able to handle up to 1200bhp! Yogi has been heard to say, “That will do for now”!

The inside is so subtle to work the overdrive, fully automatic with indicators via a switch on the console arrowed here.

For race, there is a switch on the console that controls the normal operation, and another he operates with his foot for “only for racing purposes, on specially designed track with proper supervision for all health and safety purposes” should the need arise at Santa Pod.

The funniest part of all this is that we found a page “removed” from the instructions. Rumour has it that Yogi “accidentally ripped it” or tore out the page called; “Drag Racing do’s and dont’s”. He is also rumoured to be growling “nobody tells the bear how to drag race”.

Yogi has changed out his livery on his car too, subtle but very effective. Thanks to Linards for these.

The gearbox is working fine, but his interior is now apart thinking of a way to stop the speedo cable getting so hot. But this is what the completed fit looks like underneath.

He has put some of his stickers on the car too;

If you see this car don’t bother to try racing it! Honestly, we have road tested it and we can confirm – it’s quick.

Next week we have a special report on the Fox body lights. Keep cool in the sun and be sensible with the heat.

Euro Update

If you are thinking by the heading that Mustang Maniac are going to talk politics, you are very wrong. We are pleased to announce that we have some new stock for a European look upgrade to our popular custom-made LED lighting kits. But first we start with the Park & Pic.

Park & Pic

This Coupe owned by Steve has had a little upgrade on the front suspension. Steve supplied us with the wheels and the tyres so we could set the geo up on the car after the suspension swap out.

First out was the was the old springs, shocks and perches removed which have seen better days regarding wear and tear.

The perches had the upgraded Shelby suspension springs which are stiffer and lower the front of the car a little to give that more neutral body stance. The front sway bar was upgraded to a 1″ bar which will improve the handling of the car no end with the new performance springs and shocks.

WebShop:

We mention that we have now had a Euro version of our popular LED circuit boards for the early Mustangs. These boards have multiple options of sequences you can choose from via a button on the circuit board itself. We were asked if these were available so we had a new batch made to see what the reaction was like. We have already sold a few sets, so if you see them on a Mustang, the chances are they are from us. If you wanted to see them click here for the hyper link, or cut and paste the link here into your browser.

https://mustangmaniac.co.uk/part/36/8928/euro_led_65-66_sequential_flash

Euro LED 65-66 sequential flash

We have uploaded the video to our YouTube channel and the video is also here. Or click our YouTube logo to the go the channel.

Our YouTube Channel “MustangManiacUK”

We have had a request, it was only a single request for a Yogi pic – we suspect it was from Yogi’s wife, sorry ladies – but he’s taken. But we have one of the bear working on his own car which was also posted on our Facebook pages too.

To answer a Question:

We were asked if our light weight indoor covers would fit the new Mustangs too.

Yep – they do.

Questions & Exhausts

The week reached a nice high point by changing the V8 rumble sounds of two very nice rare cars, for different reasons. We start this weeks post with the Park & Pic section with a little added twist!

This week’s Park & Pic car is owned by Gary W. whose rare car we have been looking over the recent years for him.

Gary’s latest visit to our yard was to swap the car’s near silent single exhaust, for a nice new dual system without the excess noise if possible was the brief. As Gary wasn’t too sure what “sound” he was after we gave Gary a sound tour! As any Petrol Head (UK) or Gear Head (USA) will know, the exhaust not only helps with performance but also helps with the throttle response and not just the sound or character of the car. We took Gary around the cars in the yard and storage and started them up for him to hear the difference between the engine note of each exhaust setup. Gary eventually picked the sound he liked with the eventual winner being the classic 2″ dual system from Scott Drake’s with a “H” cross pipe. This setup gives a more even and balanced V8 burble, the mufflers are more about driving pleasure but without the shout. After all, driving a convertible with the hood down with the wind in your hair is a real pleasure in Classic Mustang, when fitted with a loud and shouty exhaust may sound good for a while, but it can soon become tiresome on a long trip.

Here the single exhaust setup is shown with two mufflers that give that silent cruising experience.

The twin system being fitted which is a difficult job to get right on a convertible due to the additional strengthening under the car. You have to position the exhaust so that there is no vibration off the pipes moving and touching the bodywork especially when the engine is under load or engine braking. The final exhaust tips were fitted with the classic turn-downs that are just visible under the rear valance.

While we were fitting the rear section it was time to sort out the rear spring plates that were a little (ahem), distorted should we say. The plate which is under the leaf springs and axle also takes the connection for the rear shocks. The change of leaf spring plate will make the car sit better again and the shocks become more effective again.

The new plates were under-seal treated and fitted back to the car.

Gary has kindly sent us a couple of pictures of his car under the hood, before we got her and then after some little updates.

We mentioned that this Park & Pic will be with a twist! That twist is that we bombarded Gary with questions while he was with us and we thought we would share his interesting story with you. Although this looks like a lot of words it’s not and is a great read.

MM- Your name for the record and do you have a nick name? Gary W aka “Boris”!

MM- What was your occupation and what are you doing in your retirement? I started life as a commercial vehicle mechanic before joining Ford. I did lots of jobs at Ford mostly in Commercial Vehicles and ended up as Commercial Vehicle Director before retiring.

MM- Do you have any hobbies or pastimes? Old Mustangs, grandchildren and playing guitar and banjo.

MM- How did you hear about Mustang Maniac? When I bought my old car some years ago I needed lots of parts and Mustang Maniac seemed to be the only ones out there who carried it all in stock. Some suppliers ‘say’ that they have the parts in stock, but in reality they get it shipped from the US once your order is placed. I was let down badly with false promises from a number of suppliers which made me look around for other reliable supplier. I was then recommended the great Mustang Maniac guys and I have never looked back since.

MM- Why did you want a mustang? I had various cars and motorbikes before I ended up with a Cobra replica with a Ford 351 engine under the hood with all the nice bits. But I really fancied an early Mustang.

MM- Why this particular car? It seemed to call out to me. I knew I wanted an early car although I wasn’t fussed about a convertible as I was looking for a nice coupe. Then I spotted this car in a dealer ad and before I knew it, the cobra was exchanged and it found its way to my garage.

MM- Is there any history about your car that would be a talking point to other Mustang owners? That’s interesting as it only came with its last title owner from the US. I spent 6 months searching web sites..it was made a bit easier as it’s a very unusual colour and spec (D Code). I struck lucky on a vintage Mustang forum when I searched the “Pagoda Green” D code and found a thread from a guy in Terre Haute, Indiana – the last known US address of my car. I contacted the guy and he gave me a good start on tracking its history right back to owner number one who bought it after visiting the New York World Fair Launch in April 1964. I wrote ‘old fashioned letters’ to each owner in turn and all but one sent me pics and info – interestingly its been blue, red (twice) and finally was bare metalled I the early 90’s and painted back to its current factory colour.

MM- Has there been any problems with the car and how were they fixed? There were lots of mechanical issues, mostly because the underneath had been restored in the 80’s. It was nicely done, but the correct 64 1/2 parts were not really available then, as a result these cars tended to be ‘just nice old cars’ they were often just patched up. I replaced all the rubber bits, all fuel and brake lines, cleaned and painted the chassis, as well as replacing a long list of other bits and bobs.

MM- What do you like best about your car? I love the colour, although I do appreciate that it might not suit everyone. But that’s the beauty of our hobby – each to his or her own. I like the attention it gets whenever I take it out, but I mostly enjoy the great friends I have made since owning it. Mustang Maniac has a huge circle of friends and they all have stories to tell and advice to give when you need it – a fantastic group of people.

MM- Any dislikes about your car? I think I can ‘hear it going rusty’ from 100 paces. Adam has thoroughly inspected and worked on my car for a number of years now and he tells me it’s not going rusty – but such is my paranoia. Joking aside, I love it!

MM- Is this a keeper car or do you intend to change it in the future? No, this will probably be my last old car, although I have said that before.

MM- Do you drive it much if so where too? While it’s not a trailer queen by any means, I do use it sparingly..mostly for trips to the pub on a sunny day, which isn’t very often as we live on rainy island. Now that Adam and Al have worked their charms on her, I have no excuses for not using it. Well that’s the plan this year.

MM- Do you show the car? Yes I have shown it over the years. I am always amused when people stand by it and say loudly that “they never made Mustangs in that colour”, sometimes I leave it, sometimes I chirp up with the truth – it is believed that Ford only made 200 Pagoda Green “D Code”  Convertibles before changing the colour in June 1964.

MM- Will you show the car this year? I plan to….I’d like to join the MM gang at a few shows this year.

MM- What’s your favourite car to date and why? My 1964 1/2 Mustang!

MM- What was your worst car and why? Morris Marina, I had one and it had truly awful handling and it was like an aspirin…..it seemed to dissolve in water! 😂

MM- Which car had you owned that you wished you had kept and why? A 1965 Ford Zodiac. I spent a fortune on it and it was lovely, but I had to sell it as I was saving to get married.

MM- what’s your dream car? Ford GT40

MM- Do you have any plans for upgrades to your Mustang? Not much really, other than fixing a feisty carb (the original Autolite 4 barrel) with either a rebuild, or maybe a replacement Holley. Then it’s just keeping the paint looking good. It’s a fine balance between keeping it as original as possible and renewing parts as they start to look shabby.

MM- Does your wife share your passion? Yes..ish…probably ‘tolerates’ rather than ‘shares’ – she loves the car though.

MM- Does she or do you let her drive it? She has no real interest in driving it.

MM- Would you go on a car or driving holiday? Not really as there are too many cars on the road now. They tend to make little allowance for a cherished old car, even though early Mustangs can more than keep pace with moderns.

MM- Have you met any famous car guys and what were they like? I met Carroll Shelby at the Goodwood Revival some years ago. He was truly charming and we chatted (he talked and I listened) for half an hour.

MM- Any hero’s you would like to have meet? Henry Ford and Elvis Presley.

MM- Who would you go on a cross USA Route 66 road trip with and why? I would love to do it ‘cannonball rally’ style with Jim Clark.

MM- What has been the biggest benefit of Mustang Maniac for you? Their expertise..as this was my first American car. I had no idea what it should drive like and assumed that when it rolled all over the place, they all did at. The guys have fettled my car over a number of years, so the car I have today bears little resemblance to the car that I originally bought – thanks again to the Mustang Maniac team.

MM- Any advice to a potential Mustang owner who wants to get into the classic car scene? Just do it! Look long and hard for the best car you can afford, buy wisely after taking advice from the right people. Have a yearly budget for repair, maintenance and running costs and enjoy the car while improving it.

MM- Thank you Gary.

We have not forgotten your cars if you have them sent in to us. Please keep sending them in, we love to see the cars and what better way to lead a blog post?

Customers Cars:

Yogi was pleased to see a genuine Shelby GT350 that had come in for a replacement exhaust. The exhaust was supplied by the customer with a new Magnaflow dual system, a big opposite to Gary’s new system above.

The old exhaust had seen better days and was soon removed from the scrap skip.

The nice new super shiny exhaust was fitted in stages, this time with an “X” pipe rather than the old “H” pipe setup.

 

The before and after pictures don’t really show a lot of difference, but turn that key and the difference is instant. I nice deeper note rumble of the V8 but without the slight pant of the Flowmaster system.

Memorabilia:

Thanks to Ian Coxshall for sending us the pics of his recent purchase of eBay. We can’t say that we have seen the Japan made toys before but a great find.

If you have any interesting memorabilia you want to share with the world, send us your pics and we will get them on our blog for you. It could be major kudos of bragging rights.

Other News:

We have already had an inquiry for the advertising fence, we will have to see if that goes ahead. Please give us a shout if you are interested, after all we don’t want to look at a battle ship grey fence, a little colour would be good we must admit.

An Important Week For The World

Seeing a heading like that you thought we were going to be talking about politics! Nope, something just as important if you are a Petrol Head or Gear Head. We are fully aware that a new President has been sworn into the Oval Office, however we don’t want to be drawn into any mass debates about politics. However all we will say that one of our friends from the USA has sent us something which relates to the occasion. When the dust has settled we may well post the picture, or if we get a request to do so (it can be shown on a family blog, don’t worry) in the mean time. So what will be talking about on this week’s blog that is just as important? Cars, in particular a new model Mustang that’s what. 🙂

News of the 2018 Mustang

Ford would like to focus on the new tech adorning the 2018 Mustang, which includes a huge new information screen and a lot of driver-assistance technology. Mustang enthusiasts are more interested about what’s going on under the hood. Now that Ford had broken the performance barrier with the last-generation Mustang’s new chassis, most of us want to see what’s new in handling as well. This should make pony car fans happy.

2018-mustang1

Under the hood, Ford has simplified the 2018 Mustang’s engine offerings to just two options: the four and an eight-cylinder, both have had their transmissions tweaked that go with each option. The four-cylinder is the already-proven 2.3-ltr EcoBoost engine which showed up in the last generation and as a replacement for the 3.7ltr V6 before it. This iteration of the engine gets a tweak to improve torque output, although Ford has yet to tell everybody just how much that is. We’re also told that the big 5.0-ltr V8 has also been reworked with promises of more power and higher revolutions compared to the previous GT, mainly thanks to a new fuel injection system. The V8 is now a dual-fuel, high-pressure direct-injected engine with low-pressure port fuel injectors. This improvement increases fuel burn through better atomisation in the cylinder bores. The manual transmission has a modified twin-disc clutch through a dual-mass flywheel to increase the torque delivery capability while improving clutch movement. In other words, it makes it more difficult to “burn” the clutch during performance shifting. Pretty standard by most of the cars today to be honest. The automatic transmission now offered for the 2018 Ford Mustang is a new 10-speed tuned to the Mustang’s performance needs. This transmission goes with Ford’s other introductions of high-gear transmissions for performance vehicles like the Raptor pickup truck. Ford is promising faster shift times, better low-speed response rates, and more efficiency with this transmission, which replaces the six-speed automatic offered in the previous Mustang. Steering wheel shift paddles are offered as complements to this automatic transmission.

 2018-mustang5

Underneath the engine is a more refined chassis. The last-generation Mustang saw the advent of an independent rear suspension for the first time in this pony car. Ford has taken that set-up a step further with a new cross-axis joint and improved shock absorbers and sway bars on all models to improve ride and lateral stiffness for the curves. A new option is the “MagneRide” dampers, which allows damper adjustment to further stiffen or loosen the ride quality as the driver wishes. This is expected to be sold as part of the “Performance Package” for the new ponies. Ford also focus on the release of new technology, not just engines. Ford is now offering a 12-inch LCD screen to compliment the dashboard and part of the new instrument cluster. Ford is touting this new screen as the centrepiece that allows the driver to fully customise what’s being shown in the instrument cluster and driver information screens. The driver can also control some of the engine’s sound – or at least how much of it is piped into the cockpit. As with previous generations of the Mustang, the V6 engine’s sound can be created through the speaker system to give it a more robust, muscular track. The GT model has an active valve exhaust system that produces authentic sound that can be controlled by the onboard computer. Driver-assist technology is also at the forefront of this new Mustang. In addition to adaptive cruise control and active braking for crash mitigation, the new models also have options for Pre-Collision Assistant with pedestrian detection, lane-departure warnings, lane-keeping assist, and more.

2018-mustang3

If you ever fall asleep driving a Mustang (which we doubt very much), Ford’s Driver Alert System is now also an option if you are worried about the car being boring. Infotainment which is the latest Ford SYNC Connect is available to the Mustang range for the first time. The is a pretty cool option that allows the Ford Pass smart phone app to access the car remotely for remote start, door lock/unlock, and a lot more.

The most obvious changes are the cosmetic uplifts, offering a more athletic look with a lower hood and updated aerodynamics all of which are a progression from the current model. This does come at the expense of the grille, which is now narrower and more Focus-like than previously seen on the Mustangs. Standard LED lighting all around the car, while the current models rear tail lights remain largely unchanged still giving the nod to the early classic Mustangs.

2018-mustang4

A late announcement as we prepared this article was the new rag top or convertible model. Not much as been mentioned about it apart from the few pics. But, we don’t care its a convertible Mustang!

When do we expect to see this car? we will have to wait until the third quarter of this year! Base models expected to be around £32,000 in the UK.

Customer Cars

Lime ’72 Mach1

The car is being put back together are good speed. The engine was put back into the engine bay and the slow tedious task of wiring back up gets undertaken.

The interior has started to take shape with the dash being fitted up and some of the fittings going back into place.

The underside of the car has now been finished apart from the usual alignment and final tweaks of course. The underside is not as pretty as a full restoration, but the parts are good and there is no need to change them unless they are worn or damaged. The car isn’t going to be put into any concourse shows so Paul is happy to keep it as original as possible. We can’t argue with that either.

We did have to change the oil sump so that has had a little treat of some bling!

mach1painter76

Gulf Stream Aqua’ 65 Coupe

We have an update on the progress of Lances paint damaged car. The paint is coming off and the imperfections slowly being addressed.

Ford Escort Mk1

We have had a very unusual car come into us which is this left hand drive 1973 Ford Escort 1100XL originally built in Germany. The car was fully restored in Serbia with the glass out, new interior, and a full engine rebuild which has only done 50 miles since then. The car has just been MOT’s this week for another year of nostalgic driving. Why do we mention this – ’cause it’s for sale!

DeAgostini Shelby GT500 1:8th Model

The first delivery of 2017 from DeAgostini brings us issues are 57 – 60.

shelby1-8th-152

Part 57:

This issue is a the rear seat back that will screw to the shelf from the last issue. Just press the two parts together and they will snap into place. Tiny screws again for the hinge, but they look good.

the completed shelf seat lays onto the back of the rear section. There is a notch in the lower sides of the rear panels which will take the hinge pin.

Part 58:

This is a duplication of the previous issue Part 53 for the lower side trim.

The tricky part here is to get the rear seat/shelf to stay in place while you screw it together. A downside here is that the plastic has bowed outwards slightly and the tolerance for the hinge pins into the trims means it pops out a few times. We suspect that when it all bolts to the car it will all tighten back up again.

Part 59:

This is a duplicate of the Part 54 for the top rear trim. Getting everything to align while trying to screw it together was a little bit of a mission though.

These pics are of the three positions of the rear seat/shelf being moved.

Part 60:

This issue was a real fiddle with the rear harness belts. The first job is to fit the under dash heater box with two screws.

There are to roller blocks that are mirror images of each other. This image in the magazine was not brilliant but there is a “R” and “L” on each roller if you get stuck. The seat belts have to be threaded into the slots of each roller and the metal part of the hinge lays in place to allow a small screw into the top roll cage fitting. This is repeated for both sides. Depending how OCD you want to be about this, but look at which way the belts will show, specially at the outer side of the belts near the floor.  The could be the lapped over material showing if you get it around the wrong way, will it show? I doubt it, but we made sure the glued section was at the back of the belt and not seen from the front.

The roll cage is clipped into the lower rear trim and a small screw holds it in place. The bottom sections of the of the belts are slotted into the base of the floor section. They recommend to use small pliers or tweezers. We found it easier to get the fitting part of the way through the slots and then gently press it through with a small flat screwdriver. The choice is yours of course. From the other side the metal fastener will clip over a pin to hold it in place. Another down point here. We found that these pins were a little short and didn’t have a nice click into place feel.

We made a decision here to place a tiny drop of super glue onto the pin with the fastener to make sure it stayed in place on all the seat belt anchor points.

shelby1-8th-176

The finished article is pretty good detail but takes a little while to get it all in place.

For the total build so far see the menu above of click here for the hyper link.

See – no politics!

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.

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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!

Shelby American Full Factory Tour

Friday 4th November 2016. It’s SEMA 2016 last day for us at the show, but before we picked up where we left off at SEMA, there was a trip back to the Shelby Heritage Center to be had where a full, unprecedented all access tour was coming our way. As this is a large post with lots of pictures, it’s well worth scrolling through to the end as these rare behind the scenes pics have not been in the public eye – until now!!!!

We arrived early before the doors opened at nine sharp. As a group we were hanging around by the side roller door of the factory waiting for our guide, we could already see some rather nice cars parked inside. Adam had arranged to meet with Shelby American Inc’s Director of Production and R&D, he is also their Chief Test Driver; Vince LaViolette. Vince was going to be our very own personal guide.

A few more other guests joined had by now joined our little group, thinking this was a way in. However, once the introductions had been completed with Vince we were shown in, some random other people followed us. Vince asked if they were with us and we of course said no. With that Vince advised them that we were on a private tour and that they should wait outside. The first thing to see was lines of  post ramps, all with cars in various states of their build along with the sheer scale of the factory.

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Behind us stood a very rare original GT40 owned by Bob Bondurant this was his personal car, and what a car it is too. In 1965 Bob won the FIA Manufacturers’ World Championship for Shelby American and Ford, winning seven out of ten races against the class dominating Ferrari 250 GTOs in Europe. Bob is also known for being a driving instructor to actors James Garner, Paul Newman, Clint Eastwood, Robert Wagner and Tim Allen, Tom Cruise and Nicolas Cage to name a few.

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We were taken down the ramps and shown each of the cars in detail, and what they (Shelby) do to them to make them a “Shelby”. If you thought it was “scoops and stickers” then you are so far from the truth. The cars are ducted, cooled, tweaked, upgraded etc. but we will go into that a little later.

The cars have to be registered when they arrive at Shelby in order for the work to be done. The stock parts are removed from the car ready for the Shelby parts. This car below was going back to Australia as a rare right hand drive Shelby version. The little blue stickers on and around the car are where the body shop checks for damage, and what needs to be touched up after the series of complex engineering work has been completed.

Moving further on there was works race cars, replica GT40’s and Cobras of course.

We got up close to a Cobra being assembled. All the racks that hold the parts are covered so they don’t even put the smallest of marks on them, such is the level of care and detail.

The Cobra was waiting for the engine to be fitted and Vince explained the quality control that it all goes through before it even gets near the car.

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Moving round to the back of the factory, are the little seen areas of the body assembly. There is a huge storage area off to the side where the parts from the new cars that were removed are stored before the new bespoke Shelby parts are fitted to the car. Some of these “spare” parts are sold on or maybe modified as required.

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The car’s brakes and suspension having their upgrades fitted.

The very back of the workshop well away from the public gaze is the body paint and prep areas, the light booths will show any imperfections for the paint to be fixed.

We mentioned earlier on that the cars are all ducted and vented etc. The hoods are designed to cool the engine as every 100deg saved from the hot running engines will give around 4obhp, that’s A staggering figure just for cooling. The engines can run hot to about 400deg, but with the Shelby ducting designs this can be reduced to around 260deg, that’s why the venting is so important and the simple (in principle) way to obtain more power. This also applies to the brakes, there are cooling ducts under the cars to make sure the brake temperatures do not go out of tolerance no matter what the style of driving. The fabrication area is where each car has its own bespoke bodywork fitted or panels made for the car. Vince showed us the process for the carbon fibre and the fibreglass made on site, quite literally everything is hand finished to an impeccable standard.

Vince explains and shows us why all the little fins and ducts are there along with the benefits they produce. Nothing on a Shelby is just for show when it comes to the panels & bodywork.

Vince and Yogi discuss the finer points of body styling with Shelby’s best.

We emerged from the body shop out into the main factory area again, here more cars were being finished and some more new parts storage.

Vince explained that every single car is given a thorough road test adjusted and tested again. Vince gave us an example of one particular car even had a tiny break wobble at the rear at high-speed braking. The problem was tracked down to the position of the rear calipers being to high. A new design and fabrication was made to the calipers to re-position them, just to stop that issue that any mere mortal wouldn’t even detect, but they are there. If you think that the Shelby cars are expensive – now you know they are cheap considering what you get and what goes on behind the scenes to make your car the best it can be.

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The suspension handling is set up to the tires and their pressures when testing as on this 1000bhp just back from an initial test run. So when the owners change the wheels, tires or stance, they are undoing all that fine tuning and hours of testing done by professionals.

We walked up to the cleaning area passing more completed cars and a trucks, vince, Yogi and Adam leading the way.

The obligatory photo shoot with Mustang Maniac’s core personnel and Vince.

The crew; Gary, Jason,Yogi, Vince, Adam and Mart.

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We mentioned in an earlier post that you can sign the walls of the Shelby American Factory, which we obviously did a few days ago in the public area. This time Adam wanted to do something a little different, so the idea was born to draw around Adam and we all sign inside with a message.

Gary is quite a talented cartoonist and we put him on the spot to replicate our business card logo. We even stuck that business card in Adams silhouetted hand. What did we write? Just a message to the Shelby Factory and Cleo Shelby too from yesterdays catch up with her.

As Vince said, “there are no stickers or scoops here.”

For over two hours of Vince’s valuable time he answered our barrage of questions and showed us everything. As with most very busy people he was due at a meeting, we said our thanks and Vince departed leaving us to make our way back to the factory museum and shop. We of course took another look at the cars which are out of reach of the general public.

Then Chris and Mart took a Shelby for a spin! (OK, they just sat in it!)

That was our tour over; a rare, unique and personal guided tour around the whole of the Shelby factory. We weren’t allowed to take photo’s in couple of places, such as Vince’s own R & D area and another fabrication process area for obvious reasons. However, we were given that full unprecedented access and shown everything no stone unturned. Vince even showed us what he was working on for the 2017 Mustang in that R&D area! Not bad for a “small time parts dealer” as Adam said again.

That leaves us to say a huge thanks from all of us at Mustang Maniac to the Shelby Heritage Center and Vince LaViolette for giving us the top-level VIP treatment for the morning. An incredible insight to one of the worlds most famous names in the automotive market.