Bringing back to life an 87' GT T-top

Discussion in 'Fox 5.0 Mustang Tech' started by FoxMustangLvr, Jan 27, 2013.


  1. FoxMustangLvr

    FoxMustangLvr Advanced Member

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    I think my post above reads wrong. I don't see the fuel as being a problem nor have I checked for codes. The car runs great and the post is mostly about thoughts and opinions on the Superchip.

    Could the superchip be hindering performance with my mods and I don't know it?
    Is it something I should remove in future when I eventually upgrade intake manifold and heads?
    As far as I know it's just an off the shelf tune for a nearly stock car, right?

    thanks
  2. FoxMustangLvr

    FoxMustangLvr Advanced Member

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    My weekend progress, finally started some body work. I'm tired of sitting around waiting for the weather to get better.

    As i grinded it down to the metal i could see all the different colors and history of the car. It's never really been loved, only neglected as far as i can tell. The panel was pushed down pretty good.
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    For some reason i get the itch to watch Hellraiser after working on my car. :zombie:
  3. GroverDill

    GroverDill GoldMember

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    That is nice work. Are you a body guy by trade?
  4. FoxMustangLvr

    FoxMustangLvr Advanced Member

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    Not me, my father was a bodyman for Poway Ford & Heller Ford for 35 years. I picked up body work and painting while helping him do side jobs on the weekends but he would never let me use it as work. He told me to never become a laborer and to work with my brain, not my body.

    Thanks for the compliment.
  5. Gearhead92

    Gearhead92 Member

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    Great work man. I wish my dad was as into cars when I was younger, as much as I am now. He helps me now that I have my '88 LX, and I help him with upkeep on his truck, even though I'm 20 and in college.

    I sure wish I had found a T-Top in my price range when I was looking. They are few and far between in my experience.

    Keep the updates coming. I'm looking forward to see where your son's car ends up (let's be real, he is going to want it when it's done haha).
  6. FoxMustangLvr

    FoxMustangLvr Advanced Member

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    Working on vehicles is a great bonding experience between a Father and a son/daughter regardless of how old you are and cruising them is awesome too.

    As far as t-tops go there is a debate about how "rare" they either are or are not. I believe it's as simple as looking around, how many do you see? I have never seen one on the street, I see few of them on the boards and nobody tracked them with production numbers so it's anyone guess as to how many were ever produced. I know I love mine and was never into them until I was shopping for a 5.0 and came across this one for $1,000 and I was in love. It came with lots of goodies too. Gotta love Craigslist!

    I got the front end all sanded down, taking out some more scratches and minor dings. Finally looking like progress is being made and it's easier since I love doing body work :cool:

    Keep that 88 LX tip top!
  7. Gearhead92

    Gearhead92 Member

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    Yeah, I've never seen one on the street, only at the Ford Nationals at Carlisle.
    Yeah CL is amazing for Fox parts. I have gotten so many good deals, plus that's where I got my car, which was the worse deal. I had one pulled over on my in regards to the price of the cat because of the paint job, which I have since found out the paint job is cheap. I didn't have the knowledge I have now.

    Yep, she is a slow project since she is my DD. I'm getting her there little by little.
  8. RacEoHolic330

    RacEoHolic330 I like to dress like a pretty girl SN Certified Technician

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    Great job on the cowl. I'm sure you'll never be able to tell it was damaged once you're done with it.
  9. FoxMustangLvr

    FoxMustangLvr Advanced Member

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    So a little update and a rant :neat:

    Now I have most of my Frankenstein mustang sanded down so I can see what exactly i'm getting into. Turns out it's not too bad but the parts that are crappy are from PO's that neglected the car and cut lots of corners on preparation and quality.

    First off my son says "all work and no play in the mustang sucks" so we had to cruise around the block a couple times and **** of neighbors.
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    Fixed the dent centered on the roof above the windshield
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    How many different colors do you see? lol white, green, red.....
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    Now for a rant. This is what happens when you leave trim on your car and paint it, it leaves an edge that will eventually peel off and then rust. Fortunately for me there is no rust anywhere on the body of this car. Pretty lucky considering I got the car from Idaho.
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    More poor prep work from PO, come on people!! :nono: I'll treat her better!
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    Since there is such bad prep from the last cheesy paint job I have to take the paint down to bare metal in a lot of places. Lots of Epoxy primer is going to get sprayed on this car. I'll build a really good base to paint on so I can have a long lasting good quality paint job.

    On another note I finally insured the car and i'm now driving it from time to time. Got a new battery, hood pins (because I don't trust this hood latch too much) and I need to look for new lowering springs. I don't know what springs I have as there is no identifying marks on them (they're black and that's it). The ride is rough and the car is really low although it drives straight and steady. I'm thinking about FRPP 'B' springs since i'll eventually get 17's for this car.

    One last pic. I have a new rear bumper to put on and i'll get the exhaust redone to factory GT style turned down pipes. As you can see the PO hit too many steep inclines and shoved the straight pipe on the left into the bumper and broke it. Can I diss on PO's anymore? Yes I could!
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  10. boostfrk

    boostfrk Active Member

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    You're coming along quite nicely. Good job on the body work.

    I have the 'B' springs and am fairly pleased with them. Sure they probably don't ride as smooth as a $1k suspension set up but I still think they're a good spring for the majority of people.
  11. ReefBlueHatch

    ReefBlueHatch Active Member

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    I like my B springs a lot too. They didn't lower the car much, but made the fender gap perfect IMO. They ride great too with my Strange shocks/struts. I didn't have to buy aftermarket C/C plates and my springs were gently used for $100.
  12. FoxMustangLvr

    FoxMustangLvr Advanced Member

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    A little more progress.

    This is when i was sanding my car and my white Boxer, Casper, wanted in on the fun. I have two Boxers, the other one is a brindle and are brothers.

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    I also got a good find on a complete center console for $40. Mine is banged up and RED so it has to go. Only thing I can't find is the lower shifter boot. Oh well, LateModelResto here I come.
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    I also snapped a pic of this cover that my short belt came in for a couple reasons. One so I know what size in case I ever need to replace it in the future but people are always asking what size belt do they need if they do the A/C delete and what not.

    My setup is
    FRPP A/C delete kit
    Smog pump deleted (or bypassed)
    Power steering pump relocated to where A/C used to be
    Got this belt from Oreilly's Auto Parts, it's 72 5/8", a 73" would have worked to
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  13. FoxMustangLvr

    FoxMustangLvr Advanced Member

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    I got a lot of work done this weekend. I got in the mail from LateModelRestoration (awesome people) a new short throw shifter, OEM style shift knob, new lower shift boot and thermactor pipe plugs for the back of the heads. Also picked up off of Craiglist a new dash bezel and steering wheel in good condition. What I didn't get a picture of was my rearend gear install of some nice FRPP 3:73's!!!! Only paid $285 for everything from a local Fever 4 racer. Awesome new feel for power to the wheels!

    So on with the pics.

    New econo short throw shifter LMR
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    New (to me) dash bezel and OEM style steering wheel
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    Deleted the thermactor valve and pipe that goes to the back of each head, plugs from LMR didn't work because I couldn't get them to thread in. Don't know why so I cut the ends of the pipe off and flipped them over and bolted them back on with high temp RTV.
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    Also picked up a new PCV valve and installed that too but I think my oil leak is caused by something else so I need to look into it. More updates on the way.
  14. FoxMustangLvr

    FoxMustangLvr Advanced Member

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    I also primed my front clip and hood. I'm hoping to get the rest of my car primed in the next couple weeks but that may be wishful thinking. While I was getting my 3:73's installed we noticed that my driver side torque box was ripped. Needless to say it was a buzz killing granny shifting drive home after the install was completed. One step forward, one step back. Anyways on with more pics.

    front clip and hood prepped and ready. Front clip was sanded with P80 grit where there were deep scratches or imperfections and the rest scuffed up with a red scotch brite pad. Washed with dawn soap and water, air dried, wax and grease remover (apply with wet lint free cloth in one hand and wipe off with dry clean lint free cloth in other hand Danielson). After W&G remover I apply Bulldog adhesion promoter, one medium wet coat and let it set up for 20 minutes before applying top coat (primer).
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    The top of the hood just gets sanded down with P80 and then a final scuff with red scotch pad and then the bottom gets only the scotch pad. Remove insulator, hood latch components and hood light. Wash with dawn, blow dry with compressed air, W&G remover and shoot it!!

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    Under the hood I painted the latches while they were off.
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    I haven't had time to sand it. The process to come is to sand it, prime again, sand again, prime again and if it looks good I can spray sealer until the car is ready for paint.
  15. FoxMustangLvr

    FoxMustangLvr Advanced Member

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    Now for interior, yes I was busy this weekend! Anybody that saw the first page of my build thread will see what my interior used to look like when I first brought this POS home.
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    After lots of work (more work than it looks trust me) this is how it sits today. I know, more work needs to be done but it waaaayy better.
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    boostfrk likes this.
  16. boostfrk

    boostfrk Active Member

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    Damn, you're making great progress! The interior is looking really good.
  17. FoxMustangLvr

    FoxMustangLvr Advanced Member

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    When I got my gears installed last weekend I realized that my brake shoes were next to nothing!
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    So last night I bought some new brake shoes and installed them. Only have done brake shoes once in my life before and that was 20 years ago in my old truck and i remember it being much easier back then. Took me almost 2 hours to do the first side and of course only 20 minutes to do the other side after figuring it out. Here's a tip, leave one side assembled while you do the other, it will help guide you're assembly which I did but still took a while.

    Anyways, LOOK AT WHAT THE BROWN TRUCK JUST DROPPED OFF AT MY WORK!!!
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    Can't wait to shoot with it!!! Last weekend I started shooting etch primer on my car with an old conventional siphon feed Devilbiss gun that my dad used professionally while working at Ford in San Diego. Back then they didn't car about VOC's and over spray. The material loss is insane with them. The HVLP will reduce my material loss by at least 25% and I won't be painting in a cloud of fumes that is hard to see through with all the lighting in the world which is what happened to me. If you can't see you have to stop painting till you can see which is not good. There's pros and cons to each style of gun but I prefer the new HVLP's since i'm not painting in a professional booth with incredible ventilation.
  18. ID89GT

    ID89GT Active Member

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    Wow nice progress :) I need to go on here more often lol. I will be joining you over in WA here in the next couple weeks :p Buying a house in Spokane Valley :) Then I will be able to get my T Top project going hehe. Looks a lot better, glad to see it coming together for ya :) I am excited to see how it turns out :)
  19. FoxMustangLvr

    FoxMustangLvr Advanced Member

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    Thanks! Don't under estimate the importance of a good garage when buying that house! Congrats on the house BTW.

    I wanted to do some cruising this weekend with my son but couldn't get the car buttoned back up after some more priming. When I took off the passenger fender the bolts came out of the front clip with'em :notnice: very upsetting. My son and I went to a couple car shows and the one at the Wendle Ford dealership had waaayyyy to many 65-67 mustangs that all just looked the same after a while and ONLY ONE FOX! WTF? There needs to be more Foxbodies at these shows and there were many people stopping by to look at it too and it was just a bone stock 89 GT Vert.

    Also a little rant about car club/car shows, if you have a new bone stock GT500 or Saleen, that DOES NOT qualify as a car show worthy vehicle. You didn't do any dang work on it. All you did is put gas in it and drove it there and you can talk about making some FAT payments on it. BFD.:fuss:
  20. RacEoHolic330

    RacEoHolic330 I like to dress like a pretty girl SN Certified Technician

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    That's the truth right there. Next time you go to a show, instead of saying "Nice car", say "I see you were able to make your $700 payment this month." Then point to the smog pump in the engine bay and ask "So, what does that thing do?"

    Btw, nice progress on the interior. Definitely a huge difference.

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