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68 Cougar restoration journey

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  • I decided to start working on the headliner replacement today, so I took both the front and rear glass out. I managed to get them removed without doing any damage to the glass. Hopefully I can say the same when it comes time to reinstall it. I've got a bit of work to do before then, though. Here's a picture of the back glass out and the package tray removed. This is the last bit of original paint that has never seen the light of day since it was built 50 years ago.

    68 Cougar - 289, 4-speed
    '08 Mustang Bullitt #4492
    Previous Mustangs - '98 Cobra convertible, 87 GT

    Comment


    • I got the headliner in place, but haven't put any of the accessories (sun visors, etc.) back in. Here's what it looks like:



      As you can see, it's not perfect. I don't think it turned out too bad, though. My thought is that it's easy to install, but hard to get perfect. I still need to run the heat gun over a few spots to get some more wrinkles out. I have a lot of respect for anyone that has the skills to install one of these and make it look factory.
      68 Cougar - 289, 4-speed
      '08 Mustang Bullitt #4492
      Previous Mustangs - '98 Cobra convertible, 87 GT

      Comment


      • your headliner looks great ! keep at it .....
        34 FORD coupe...Cleveland POWERED

        it`s nice to be important but it is more important to be nice.

        Comment


        • Thanks. There are still a few more challenges in getting windows in and holes cut in it yet, but I think it'll be alright.

          After twisting off the bleeder screw on one of the rear brake cylinders, it became mandatory that I replace them. I got them replaced and this evening I bled the brake system. It appears my flaring technique was good enough that I don't have any leaks. I found a bleeding technique a couple of years ago that works pretty well. Here's a picture of the setup:



          The bottle gets filled up a bit to start with so the end of the tube is under the fluid level, which prevents air from getting sucked into the system when you let off of the pedal. The method works pretty well if you don't have a pressure bleeder or someone else to help you.

          After some discussion on a Cougar site, I decided to try some Koni Str.T's. I could never find an actual length of the Mustang shock, so I figured I could use it with just a bit of a spacer (OEM shocks were 1" longer on Cougar than Mustang), which is what I had done previously with a Monroe shock. Here's what it looks like compared to my old Monroe shock:



          As it turns out, it's almost 2" shorter than what I had on it previously. It didn't even get close to bolting up. I'm still planning on using them, I will just need to come up with a robust method of extending the length. There are no good options specifically for a Cougar, so that's why I'm going to adapt rather than switch them out.
          68 Cougar - 289, 4-speed
          '08 Mustang Bullitt #4492
          Previous Mustangs - '98 Cobra convertible, 87 GT

          Comment


          • have you tried speed bleeders to help when doing the brake system ?
            I installed these bleeders on my coupe after the wife "helped" me bleed the system many years ago.
            they work great in my opinion.

            https://www.summitracing.com/parts/rus-639530/overview/
            34 FORD coupe...Cleveland POWERED

            it`s nice to be important but it is more important to be nice.

            Comment


            • I haven't used them, but have heard numerous people say they work really well. They're probably a little more forgiving than the method I use (position not so critical).
              68 Cougar - 289, 4-speed
              '08 Mustang Bullitt #4492
              Previous Mustangs - '98 Cobra convertible, 87 GT

              Comment


              • Steve, nice job on the headliner install. I did one on a 68 GT Coupe I had back in the 80's & it came out about the same as yours. I also used the Koni Str T shocks on my 69 Coupe.
                Mike & Robin Grentus
                69 Mustang Coupe (project & future toy)
                08 Escape 4X4 (spare)
                00 Ranger Extd Cab 4X4 (my DD)
                99 Explorer Sport (wife's DD)
                14 Kawasaki Vulcan (wife's toy)
                M&M Member #- 890
                MCA #- 4549
                My 69 Coupe build album
                http://www.newyorkmustangs.com/forum...cs-t15096.html

                Comment


                • Headliner looks great! First one I did was a VW Bug, nothing flat or straight anywhere! Yours looks about like the one I did in my Maverick, a lot of those wrinkles will come out when it sits in the sun a while. I put my headliner out in the sun and let it warm up before I started it, but it still had wrinkles.
                  My next one will be in the 47 Lincoln, it's a lot like the VW was, rounded, but it will probably be cloth. Don't know if that will be easier or harder to work with.
                  ----1999 F150 XLT Lariat Super Cab 4X4 5.4----
                  -----1947 Lincoln Zephyr Coupe 5.0-----
                  -----2005 Expedition Eddie Bauer 5.4----
                  " Sometimes you fix the car, sometimes the car fixes you" Steve L.

                  "Do not let anyone tell you it cannot be done. No challenge can match the heart and fight and spirit of America". President Donald J. Trump

                  Comment


                  • I'm finding out that getting the headliner in place is only half the battle. The rest is trying to get everything else reattached without messing it up. I'm glad I followed some advice I read about putting hardware in so it's easier to find where the holes need to be cut. Unfortunately there was one piece of hardware that I didn't get put in and I missed my cut by just a little bit. Fortunately it's fairly hidden and superglue works pretty well. I didn't get a lot done today, but it looks like I've made major strides. It's amazing what a few interior pieces can do:


                    The large mess around the driver's feet area is my old gauges. I'm debating whether to just get rid of them and start over or trying to sort things back out and make them work. I'll probably just get them working for now and update sometime down the road. I'll probably have to pull some of this back apart, but at least there are a few less things floating around now.
                    68 Cougar - 289, 4-speed
                    '08 Mustang Bullitt #4492
                    Previous Mustangs - '98 Cobra convertible, 87 GT

                    Comment


                    • Also, you have to be happy that your rear window channel seems to be relatively rust-free. That’s a lot of work you don’t have to do, right there.

                      The headliner should tighten up nicely once the car is left to sit in the warm sun.
                      '70 Mach 1 - '72 Sprint - '94 F-150 XL -'97 E-150 - '05 Sable LS
                      My Mach's restoration progress
                      My Sprint's restoration progress
                      ”Mercy for the guilty is cruelty to the innocent.” ~ Adam Smith

                      Comment


                      • I definitely got pretty lucky with some of the areas that didn't rust - that area being one of them. Some of it will eventually be replaced anyway when I get new quarter panels for it. That's probably going to be a ways down the road, though.

                        Tonight was a big screw up for me. The picture speaks for itself:



                        I started tightening down and apparently you don't tighten them to torque specs (even for grade 5). I'm not sure if the threads weren't deep enough (although they went what seemed to be all the way in by hand), or if the ridge separating the 7/16 threads from the 3/8 threads wedged in the beginning of the threads and split it. Doesn't really matter, as they're ruined. Looks like I'll be using my 351W heads after all. I cleaned them up a bit tonight and will try to get the valves lapped in tomorrow. One thing I'm doing to them is replacing the old springs and keepers with the new ones. Live and learn...
                        68 Cougar - 289, 4-speed
                        '08 Mustang Bullitt #4492
                        Previous Mustangs - '98 Cobra convertible, 87 GT

                        Comment


                        • that bites ! I hate to see that happen.
                          34 FORD coupe...Cleveland POWERED

                          it`s nice to be important but it is more important to be nice.

                          Comment


                          • The engine woes continue. A closer look at the cylinders and here's what number 8 looked like:



                            I was thinking that might be the end of it, but I got a hone and ran it through a few times to see if the rust had gouged the metal. Here's what a little time with the hone did:



                            It'll take a little more work, but the roughness is all gone. It looks like I'll end up getting new rings and bearings. i was glad to see that we used ARP rod bolts when we did the rebuild. I'm sure it would be better to do a little more thorough job (like go another .010 over), but I really want to keep the dollar amount to a minimum on this engine. Any money I don't spend on it will go towards an FE in the future.
                            68 Cougar - 289, 4-speed
                            '08 Mustang Bullitt #4492
                            Previous Mustangs - '98 Cobra convertible, 87 GT

                            Comment


                            • Got the differential stuff done. Filled it up with fluid and got the shocks tightened up. Here's what it looks like:


                              I do have a question on the windshield install. Is the rubber supposed to be pushed in any further than the groove the rope for the "rope trick" goes in? I got the lip pulled in all the way around, but the corners look like this:


                              The flange looks seated on the interior side, but there are a couple of grooves showing. I'm not completely sure that this is correct. With as much as people complain about the difficulty of installing these, I want to make sure the grooves aren't supposed to be situated differently - like the pinch weld resting between the two grooves. I'm not sure it's even possible to get it there, so I don't want to try to get it there and break it because it doesn't fit. Any guidance would be appreciated.

                              Parts are showing up for the engine tomorrow, so that should keep me busy for a bit.
                              68 Cougar - 289, 4-speed
                              '08 Mustang Bullitt #4492
                              Previous Mustangs - '98 Cobra convertible, 87 GT

                              Comment


                              • Can't tell for sure with the masking tape, but think it will be a huge leaker unless that groove is pushed down so the flange can enter the groove.

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