Build Thread 1978 Fairmont Futura Build..smoke?.....oh You're Gonna Smoke.....

Discussion in '1979 - 1995 (Fox, SN95.0, & 2.3L) -General/Talk-' started by madmike1157, Aug 26, 2013.

  1. Mike, I had the displeasure of working on these turds at Union Ford. Trust me. I didn't find the 70's funny either.

    Remember THIS better idea?

    74stang2togo likes this.
  2. Cant tell you chit about diaphragms inside the booster. I bet it would be pretty inexpensive to find a used SN MC and booster combo though. I just wanted you to know I safely ran a stock MC with the Cobra brakes.
  3. Sn MCs are pretty easy picks at the JY. I am curious about the SN style 10.5s on the rear. Have you tried mocking them underneath yet Mike?
  4. I doubt that this is true so I will save the lengthy explanation and say just this: It may be premature to start thinking about doing away with that booster just yet.
  5. The booster is off a 95GT. I don't recall the exact bore size of the MC, but it was adequate to give good pedal pressure with Cobra brakes all around.

    I'm pretty excited to see you tear into this car, Mike. I'll grab my popcorn.
    #25 RacEoHolic330, Aug 30, 2013
    Last edited: Aug 30, 2013
  6. Well Scott was kind enough to give it to me for very cheap. If you decide you want it, lemme know. It'll save you the trip to the junk yard
  7. Gee, thanks for all the support guys,..I'm anxious to get started,...but I want to ammass all of the stuff for chapter 1 before I start. That means I'll need to buy a rear,..coil overs for all four corners, plates and a bumpsteer kit. I figure a couple of weeks. I'm going to pull-a-part tommorrow to try and snag an 8.8. I'll get hot after it as soon as the rest of the stuff starts coming.
    Davedacarpainter likes this.
  8. woot woot, c'mon
  9. So I hit my first bump in the road,........No,....not a bump,....a friggin POTHOLE, China!!!!

    When I bought the car,...the pics confirmed that the tail lights were all there except the driver side back up light lens.
    When I get the car,.....every lens had fallen off the car, the carrier,...and onto I-10 some where between Arizona,...and here.
    ( Almost like Hansel and Gretel, where Gretel drops the bread crumbs in the forest, car dropped it's tail lights so it could find it's way back home)o_O

    When I get it, looks like this:
    The only thing remaining was the one broken, cloudy, raggedy assed back up lens,...and the AZ license plate last registered in 2007.
    The Driver told me that I was lucky I didn't lose all of them, and pointed out the fact that he had saved two other pieces that were about come off.
    Yea me.:banana: I'm lucky.

    He went on to point out that the contract clearly stated that they were not responsible for pieces that fell off the car due to poor or defective attachment.

    That brings me to the bump in the road,....the actual bottom of the pot hole.

    You cant replace them.

    Unlike every damn piece for any year Mustang,...where you can get anything right down to the screw that attaches the LH thread extonciator to the bluferator under the passenger side quarter panel extension,....Futura tail lights are,............obsolete.:eek:

    If I can find any,..they will be off of some other junk fairmont,..and will have their fair share of hazing,..and stress fractures that are present in every tail light lens that is 35 years old. And,.......they wont be cheap.
    Further complicating matters is the method for how the brilliant, coked up, disco designers chose to integrate those obsolete tail lights into the over all look of the rear from behind.
    See,...that aluminum rear bumper sticks out behind about a mile, and there was a unsightly gap between the bottom of the tail lights,..and the top of the bumper. The smarty pants designers slanted the tail lights so they would be longer at the bottom (to better breach the gap), and they made a cheesy plastic filler strip to cover up the rest. Additionally, the top of each corner there was another gap between the quarter panel extension,...and the top corner of each tail light. Ford design dude just made a piece of foam,..and "filled" the gap with it.
    (And to think they paid these guys to come up with these "better ideas".)

    The solution is not easy,..nor will it be cheap. I figure I got three options:
    1. I wait and try and scrounge a complete set of factory tail lights. And I wait,......and I wait,....and I wait.
    Then I'll still have to deal w/ the gap,...and that stupid plastic filler strip, the foam fillers,...and have to deal w/ whatever condition they may be in.
    2. Like the last project,...I use repro sheet metal and repro tail lights (like off of 65 mustang) and use classic Mustang tail lights on my poor little stepchild fox. (this plan will more than likely use 65 tail lights, as they were the only ones mounted on a flat rear panel. 67 Cougar units are also a possibility)
    3. Pretty much the same as above,..only I go completely custom, using the led stuff that comes from the street rod industry. ( the concern here is the the end result will come off as too understated for my boxy foxy.)

    So the purpose of this update is to try and solicit feedback,.....if any of you have a friend that is sitting on a nice set of tail lights, all means have him get in touch with me,.....Otherwise, if you have any thoughts/input fire away.
    Davedacarpainter likes this.
  10. It's a fox, SVO tail lights!
  11. i kinda dig it the way it is
  12. There's always that way cool red tail light tape . Maybe you can cut down some Fox body tail lights?
  13. Chapter 1: Suspension/brakes/wheels-tires/ Cosmetics
    I need an 8.8,

    You probably already know that the later stangs used an 8.8 with 9" style wheel bearings.

    then sorting out a torque arm/panhard bar

    The original 4 link system had wheel hop problems when going into a hard corner under stiff deceleration. That was why ford installed an additional shock above the tire from the frame to the wheel bearing area. Personally, one of the torque transfer systems would be the first thing I did to the suspension. Oh, before you do that weld in some frame links from front frame to rear, they make the steering much more responsive....I still hate the long bars running from the rear torque boxes to the front, but they did work great. :)

    That said; all suspension bushings will be upgraded, I'll invest in a good set of control arms.

    Probably can't find any now, but the Police car versions of the fox body had upgraded rubbers in everything, not as hard as the after market stuff but good control with some help on suspension slamming from things like potholes.

    The plan is to do all of this for a total investment of 6k.

    That's gonna be the hardest part of the whole build.

  14. Oh, I forgot, I just did a search on ebay and found at least four taillights for that version of fox body car under the "futura" search tag.
  15. Well.

    I said it would be a couple of weeks before I started on the car, but that doesn't mean I'll have to wait two weeks to start buying some junk.

    And boy did I buy some junk .

    It started out promptly at 9:00AM,....when my first online purchase netted me a set of KYB gas-a-just struts. 140.00 for the set shipped


    Intrigued by how easy it was to spend my money,... I Googled "caster camber plates,... made an offer less than advertised on eBay,... and boom! I own Aluminum UPR CC plates for 129.00 shipped.

    * ching!

    UPR coil over kit w/175# springs, 189.00; UPR Bumpsteer kit for 119.00 shipped; Griggs torque arm hardware kit for 59.00 shipped.
    * ching, ching, ching.

    I then left the house to find my 8.8 rear.

    I've never been to pull-a-part. (mostly because I don't wanna sweat my ass off under a junk car in the blazing Sun unbolting something w/o the benefit of an air compressor)
    After speaking w/a friend that has been there before, however,.. I was all foamy at the notion that I could buy an 8.8 for 170.00 as long as I did the grunt work.

    So I rounded up all of the tools I coil think of that would facilitate removal of said unit, and headed off. Once there,.. I pay my 2.00, and wade in.

    Acres and acres of dead cars on gravel.

    After walking all of those acres, quickly became apparent to me that all of the parts worth pulling,... had already been pulled.

    No 8.8's to be found. ( at least not on a Mustang)

    So,... dejected,.. I leave. I stop by one of the old yards I used to frequent and ask Dane if he had a GT that still had an 8.8 in it.

    "Nope,... but let me call around,.. and see what I can find".

    2 minutes later,...he informs me that Frankie had one already pulled,... that he wanted 350.00 for.

    "But he'll take less of you got cash".

    30 minutes later I got a complete 3.73 geared 8.8 out of a 95 GT w/great rotors, calipers,... and e brake cables for the cash price of 300.00.
    By now I'm pretty proud of myself,... and I'm heading for home.

    But I think,...maybe I'll see if I can stop by Astro (another yard) and see if they have one of the 3.3 L 6 cylinders that I can scrounge the head off of so I can have a Guinea pig head to do all of the modification on and keep my "monty" running as long as I can till the time comes to change it over to turbo.

    I stop and ask Carl if he has one, to which he replies,.."I might have one,'ll have to walk out way yonder and see if that ole maverick has what you're looking for."

    I have to control myself.

    "Maverick? What year Maverick?" I ask. "I think It's a like a 79 or 80." Carl replies.

    I tell him I'll check,...and I'll be back in if it does to discuss his price.

    It does. It runs. AND it's a 250,...NOT a 200.

    Now I'm stoked.

    I return to Carl and ask how much for the whole engine top to bottom,...front to back. Carl says 300.00. I almost throw the money at Carl.

    *CHA CHING!!!

    "When can I have it?" I ask. "Hows Monday sound"?? Carl replies.


    Why am I so excited about another anemic little 6 banger, albeit 50 cubic inches bigger than the one I currently own?

    Well silly,....if you'd can that line chatter,...and deploy a little recon,'d know that 250's have forged rods,....7 main caps,...and are capable of with standing the same 500 HP that a 5.0 can stand.
    The most important characteristic of a 250 for me is:

    It comes w/ a SBF bell housing pattern.

    Unlike the little 200 that I have,..the 250 will mate to any trans I choose w/o the need for an adapter. I will have to modify the pan to fit my fox,...but that is by far the least of my worries.


    My future ugly little banger:


    I rubbed the grease off for you, line confirms the C.I.


    This should leave you with no doubt that this engine is truly a high performance piece,...just check out the exotic factory ram air setup.:lol:

    So that concludes my Saturday spending spree. My budget is shot. but I'm happy as hell w/ what I got, and what I got coming. Now all I gotta do is figure how to hide the greasy assed 250 in the garage so the wife wont see it.:cool:
    #36 madmike1157, Aug 31, 2013
    Last edited: Aug 31, 2013
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  16. And the proof for the skeptics:
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  17. Thanks for the link, but I already looked there.
    The futura link you are referencing has only one part of the 6 part tail light system listed. The other 3 "references" are for a Falcon,... and the rest are non-related.
    Davedacarpainter likes this.
  18. Davedacarpainter likes this.
  19. That is awesome that you found a running 250 for that good of a score. Way to go man!