Progress Thread 1993 Lx-cobra Conversion Project

91TwighlightGT

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Part 18: 09/22/2014

Work is still going slowly and I have no idea when this thing will be done, but at least I got a chance to snag a few pictures.

The first two are just a couple of shots of the body sanded and buffed from a few weeks ago. The last two are from today and show the doors back on for the first time in years :)

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91TwighlightGT

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Part 20: 03/22/15
Two weeks in a row of work. Feels like a world record these days.

Final polishing done on the body, doors, fenders, hood, hatch, and front bumper cover. Still need to do the rear cover, wing and ground effects.

Fighting with the front cover because the studs in the header panel are spinning, so I have to take it back off and jb weld them into place, as well as clean the threads so they can tighten properly.

A few pics from today...

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91TwighlightGT

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91TwighlightGT

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Part 21: 04/26/15

More work completed! Finally got the front cover installed, along with the headlights. Once the studs were reattached to the header panel, everything went smoothly on the install. The ground effects are now also installed, with the exception on the right front fender extension which needs some sanding touch up and final buffing.

The rear wing is finally installed, which was a bit of a pain to get the wires to go through the fiberglass hatch. We ended up having to cut the harness because the connectors simply wouldn't fit through the left side of the hatch. once we did, the wires were able to be pulled through and reattached on the other side. It was a pain, but not terribly difficult. Finally, because this car was an lx originally, the wires to the third brake light were too short and had to be extended.

So, all that remains of the main body is the fender extension, door body moldings, the rear bumper cover, and the tail lights. The only problem is that the exhaust needs to be adjusted slightly because it is touching the cover when it is installed.

Hopefully this stuff will all be taken care of in a couple weeks, because I am anxious to get going on painting the trim pieces, quarter windows, and mirrors. Once those are done, all that is left is interior and figuring out what I am going to do with the wheels. No small amount of work, but the end of the body and interior phase has light at the end of the tunnel.

Lastly, the car had become hard to start and ran really rough for about the last year and a half. We kind of backburnered that because we have been spending our available time on body work. It looks like it is just a simple coil pack issue, but because of it I couldn't move the car easily today and the pictures are quite crappy. Sorry!

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91TwighlightGT

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Part 22: 05/17/2015

More stuff done today. With the exception of the gas door, the Vibrant Red body work is done. Today we buffed the rear bumper cover, the RF fender Extension, and the door body moldings. Rain was threatening the whole time, but held off and finally blew over after about 1:00 PM. At that point we were able to attach the remaining pieces to the car, as well as the tail lights.

Phase two of the paint process will begin in a month or so, which is painting the trim, mirrors, quarter windows, and cowl grille vent black. After those pieces are done and installed, all that remains is the interior, and the car will be ready for the road - at least until I build a turbo drivetrain for it! That will be a little while though, I'm ready to do a little driving and less working on it for a bit.

Even though the light at the end of the tunnel is growing brighter, there is still a long way to go. I am pretty happy with how it looks, though!

The bright sun washes out the red in some of the pictures. It really pops in person!


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91TwighlightGT

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Part 23: 07/06/2015

Not a lot of progress, but every little bit helps!

So, the body is back together, but we are now trying to finish the trim. A lot of this has been primed and sanded, but there is definitely a little way to go here. Can't have a freshly painted car with crappy looking trim!

Primed pieces waiting for paint.

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One of the mirror housings.
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Door belt moldings
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Run channel moldings for the door frame.
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Painted mirror housings
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One of the lower front windshield moldings
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Cowl Vent Panel
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And lastly, the door handles.
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I didn't grab a pic of the finished quarter windows, but I was pretty excited to finally get those painted up and will grab a pic of them next time. It is really important to get them on, since the interior can't even think about going in without those in!

The plan is to sand and buff the trim pieces, then install ASAP. After that, we will be cleaning and painting the interior pieces. Subframe connectors, then carpet trimming and installation, and a lot of forgetting exactly how this thing went together soon to follow!
 

91TwighlightGT

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Part 24: 07/19/15

Finally started installing some trim today, which is a great milestone and really is starting to make it look like a Mustang again.

The first thing to do was to get the run channel trim and weatherstripping installed.

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After that, we installed the door belt moldings.

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Once that was done, it was time to install the cowl vent panel. As some of you have seen done on this forum (I actually saw this for the first time in a Mustang Monthly magazine circa 2001) I added a screen to go between the cowl and the vent panel to keep it from filling with debris.
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Then installed the Cowl Vent Panel itself.
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Finally, and the most exciting part of the day, we installed the quarter windows.

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So, still a lot to do. I need to get the mirrors and the roof rail trim sanded, buffed, and installed. Also, we really want to get the door handles all buffed up, then install the handles, lock cylinders, and the door glass.

Looking forward to working on it again, but it won't be for about a month it looks like.
 
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91TwighlightGT

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Part 25: 08/03/2015

triple white vert;15977473 said:
Thats a project to be proud of, blood sweat and tears and the ol man by your side.

Thanks!

Got a chance to put in a few unexpected hours yesterday, so we took the time to take care of a few details. The hatch now has the latch and lock cylinder, which is great. We also got the lock cylinder and driver's side door handle installed. The passenger side handle had an issue with the paint (solvent pop) and needs to be redone, along with the mirrors. We tried a little to hard to get those painted the other day, and I believe they were in the sun too long and got too hot which may have caused the issue.

One other thing to knock off the checklist is the door glass, which is finally installed and I'm pretty happy with how it looks!

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91TwighlightGT

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Part 26: 09/17/2015

Got a chance to get a little bit more done over the weekend.

The biggest holdback right now is that the car has started to run extremely poor, to the point that I can hardly move it! I thought the ignition coil was the culprit because it had been having a hard start, and pulling the plug wire off the coil on two of the cylinders seemed to make no difference in how it ran. Since this car has two coils, I swapped the one that runs the waste spark to the primary and it ran very well.

So, I left it that way for a bit while we have been working, but then it seemed to revert back and I figured that both coils (which look original) were just worn out. I replaced them... and it still runs terrible!

When I first got the car the fuel tank was leaking, so I replaced the tank and the pump. That pump lasted about two years, then one day simply wouldn't power on anymore. So, I replaced that pump with another and things were back to normal.

This pump is now particularly loud, even more so than the normal Mustang fuel pump whine that I am used to. The pump has a lifetime warranty, so if I have to replace it I will, however I am thinking that the problem may be actually in the fuel filter or perhaps the Fuel pressure regulator having failed and causing the car to not generate enough fuel pressure. The symptoms right now are an extremely hard start, followed by the engine being able to rev to about 2500-3000 RPM before it acts as though it runs out of fuel and if the throttle is kept open eventually it dies.

I guess I don't really feel concerned that I won't figure it out, but it is definitely annoying because it is slowing us down on a project that has moved along slowly as it is, and worse yet may be otherwise getting close to completion!

Anyway, enough complaining, on to a few more progress pictures.

We got the foglight bar installed on the car, which wasn't too difficult but did require a trip to the hardware store to collect some nuts and bolts. Since this was originally an LX, it didn't have everything I needed to install it.

Also, the passenger side door handle and lock are installed, as well as the mirrors and the drip rail moldings. The last remaining exterior pieces to install are the trim pieces for the rear hatch. Because I went fiberglass on the hatch, these have to be siliconed into place instead of snapping in like they do on the steel hatches. It is one of the relatively few downsides to a Fiberglass hatch, but it is there nonetheless.

Trim and mirrors installed. A little bit of final buffing is required on the mirrors, but it will wait until the car gets a complete detail and wax job down the road.
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Finally stuck the gas door on, which I should have done a while ago I guess :)
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Passenger side trim/handle/lock etc.
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Pictures aren't great because I really couldn't move the car into the light.

So, after the running problem is resolved and the rear trim is installed, the next major thing to do is get the subframe connectors welded up, and also do any small touch-ups on the body. After that, it is on to the interior, do something with the wheels and tires, and hit the road for a while.
 
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elarm1

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Nice work! As i look back when i got my car painted and look at yours, Im glad i gave my body man the money... its a lot of work! Keep the pictures coming

sent from my butt pocket
 

91TwighlightGT

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Part 27: 11/16/2015

Not much to report, but found a bit of time in various weeks to work on the car.

The major hold up has been the fact that the car had quit running altogether, and we are at the point that it really needs to move under it's own power. At first, I figured that the new fuel pump I had (New a year ago, anyway) had just failed and I would warranty it out and be back in business.

In actuality, that was partially true, but not entirely the issue.

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The reason the car wouldn't run is because the hose that goes from the pickup to the metal output line had failed, and the pump was simply pushing the fuel it picked up right back into the tank. However, the condition of the pump itself was alarming to say the least. I have to thank the local Autozone for agreeing to warranty the pump, because it's condition is pretty awful! I believe the problem has stemmed from condensation in the tank causing it to have excess water, creating the perfect storm for a really rust prone environment. The tank was left pretty low on fuel, which it probably shouldn't have been.

Once we installed the new pump, we also found out that the filler neck seal had a nice hole in it, so I had to replace that before we could fill it totally full of fuel. That has since been done, but that day our woes continued.

With the new pump, the car started, but it was still running terribly. Pulling the plug wires off the coils one by one led us to the fact that #3 cylinder was dead. After pulling the plug, we found it was pretty fouled. Changing the plug fixed the running problem, but we decided to go ahead and change them all (I had the plugs for a while, but just hadn't ever gotten around to changing them) to get everything up to snuff.

Unfortunately, sometimes the most simple jobs are the ones that cause the biggest headaches, and this one didn't disappoint. Due to the way the Intake is designed on the 2.3L, the fourth plug is pretty difficult to access. Not impossible with universals, though. It was really my own fault, but while getting the spark plug socket seated onto the plug, I managed to snap the schrader valve right off the fuel rail. So, the car had run for 30 seconds, and I had put us right back where we started in less than 5 minutes.

Due to the tight location of the fuel rail, we ended up having to remove it entirely so that we could get an Easy Out to remove the remains of the old schrader. No parts store caries the valve (or even the rail) but it turns out that Late Model Restoration actually sells the darn thing, so I was able to order it from them and get it back together this past week along with the filler neck seal.

The only good part to come out of that whole scenario was that we had to pull the fuel injectors to get the rail out, and after seeing their condition we decided to replace them all. I can happily report that the car has never run better, and I was able to cruise it to the gas station to fill it with new gas without a hickup.

Once we got back, our intention was to install the MM subframe connectors. We soon realized that time was not going to be on our side with that project, but did manage to fix a really annoying (and self inflicted) exhaust issue that had been bugging me for a while. In our haste to get the thing together for inspections early on in the project, we really never got the muffler to sit properly under the car. Since we had it in the air, we decided to go ahead and address it.

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I didn't take an after shot, but suffice it to say we were able to straighten out that embarrassing problem and get it nice and tight to the body underneath.

The next thing to do on the car is get the subframe connectors installed, and then we will move onto the interior.

Although it is going to wait for a bit because the weather isn't great for painting right now, we do have to fix a problem on the rear bumper cover.

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Pretty annoying!!! We really had to fight to get it on there, and I'm pretty sure we screwed it up when we did that. I think I am going to loosen the cover, tape off the entire car, and just respray it on the car this time.
 

91TwighlightGT

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Part 28: 11/11/2015

Christmas is coming early this year!

I snagged a set of wheels of craiglist. Although one wheel is bad (disclosed by seller) for $100 bucks I am pretty happy to get three good ones. Just need to hunt down one more and I am in business.

Going to refinish these, then I may have to up my timetable on my 5-lug conversion. They will be painted black with the polished lip like the '93 R, and I will have to get a set of chrome pony center caps as well.

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91TwighlightGT

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Part 29: 12/07/2015

The work continues! We had to take a hiatus to clean up the garage, as it had become messy to the point of not being workable. Fortunatley, it was a one day project and we have been back at it the last few weeks.

Earlier I showed a pic of our poor muffler install from earlier on. This is much better!
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After we squared that away, we needed to install the MM Subframe Connectors. The truth is, it was harder on this car than it was on my GT, and I think that it is simply because that car was like this _______________ and this car is like this~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ :)

So, we made it work, but it was more time consuming to say the least.

So, some action shots of the welding process...

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I don't have the finished product pictured because I only had enough time to shoot some quick primer before it was time to call it a day. A few minutes with some black spray paint will finish that up nicely.

Lastly, a few people have asked about how we exhaust our booth. It's pretty simple, really.

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This is a big fan we bought from (Home Depot? Lowes?) years ago. We fabricated two sheetmetal ducts, which we then attach a pair of large dryer hoses from the booth (using the other fabricated sheet metal duct pictured below) to the fan. The hoses are held in to place with the finest in modern technology - extra large zip ties :)

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We seal everything up with liberal doses of duct tape. The fan creates enough suction to bow in the plastic sheeting of the booth significantly. The intake air is drawn through a couple of A/C filters on the opposite side of the booth.
 

91TwighlightGT

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Part 30: 01/03/2016

Slow going with the holidays and the cold weather, but we are finally starting to work on the interior. The biggest problem is that we need to paint the interior pieces, but we won't be able to do that until the weather changes.

However, we still needed to get the carpet installed and trimmed up so we are ready to go when the time comes.

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Starting to see light at the end of the tunnel. Can't wait to get it all together!

***Thanks for bearing with me, but I didn't want to just link the old thread and it kinda brings everything up to date. Looking forward to getting it back on the road!***
 

95BlueStallion

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I love seeing things like this, especially since its you and your pops working together. I wish my dad and I would have done a project we discussed way back when, but it never happened. Screw the people calling it a fobra, you arent trying to replicate a cobra if you are keeping it a 2.3. I think the red cobras are some of the best looking foxes out there, personally. I also love the stock silver color of the tribars on a fox, but understand your theme you are going for. Do you plan to split the exhaust and run the dual tips out of the bumper to finish the look? I think you are robbing yourself if you dont.
 
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TOOLOW91

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The car looks awesome . Great job . Also I agree on the tail pipe deal


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