My Progress Thread.

Discussion in '1996 - 2004 SN95 Mustang -General/Talk-' started by stangr5oh, Aug 5, 2014.

  1. I am calling this a progress thread and not a build thread as it is just that. I do not plan on making drastic changes or expensive rebuilding to make goddly amount of power that will never be able to use as this is a daily driver street car, not a race car. So I created this thread to show progress with the upgrades and daily routine maintenance that all of us do. But with some style added and some upgrades to allow for 50-75 more horsepower. As I mentioned I want this to be a street daily driver. To enjoy through the mountains and countrysides of Puerto Rico.

    When I bought this car back in June, and even though it has only 58k miles on the clock, this car did have repairs that needed to be attended to. The first thing on the to do list was take care of the suspension whoas and stance. As you can see from this pic, the car's front suspension was sitting on rails. The previous owner had bought lowering springs and then cut 2 coils out of each spring which caused havoc on the camber and bump stops. Not to mention distroying the inner fender well skirts. And ride performance was spine jolting. He fit the car with 20x8's with 265/45's all around. Not enough sidewall for my liking.

    So I went online to American Muscle and bought new SR lowering springs, and new staggered AM 17x10.5 and 17x9 black 5 spokes, with 315x35 in the rear and 275x40 up front. I further found that the lower balljoints were trashed along with the tierod ends and swaybar bushings. So I ended up replacing the bushings, tierod ends and balljoints and installing new SR caster/camber plates for proper alignment.
    #1 stangr5oh, Aug 5, 2014
    Last edited: Aug 6, 2014
  2. Then after I got the ride height right and waiting on my caster/camber plates to come in so to get the alignment issues resolved, I started with taking care of the intake and installed a BBK CAI system.
  3. After that, I got the plates installed and took it down to the alignment shop and got it riding straight again. I installed some Ford logo goodies on the inside, floor mats, seat covers to protect the nice seats, wheel cover and foot pedals.
  4. Then I put my attention to the radio / A/C bezel that was all broken after the previous owner installed a sound system in it. Once I repaired it, I installed my own head unit and satelite radio. The bezel was pretty much trashed as it has both horizontal seperater bars broken at each end, and the crown edge on the left side of the stereo was missing. So I had to create a new piece of plastic to fit in the crown of the bezel where it wraps around the radio and also plasti-weld the cross bars back into place. Once I got the plastic piece to fit around the radio on the left side, I had to plasti-weld it in and fill and sand multiple times until the desired look of original was created.
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  5. Here is the bezel during shaping and plasti-welding adn filler and sanding to original shape.
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    In that last pic you can see I installed a 2006 shifter knob that came out of my 06 Chip Foose Stang that I sold a couple years ago. Fit nice like original and I was able to get rid of the one that the PO had on there that was a 3 piece Euro POS.
    #6 stangr5oh, Aug 5, 2014
    Last edited: Aug 5, 2014
  7. Now my next issue on the list to do is installing the MIL Eliminators from American Muscle. They should be in in the next feew days. Then after those are installed, I still have to work out the CEL PO455 code.

    And here is my progress list that still needs to be done.

    1) MIL Eliminators (received / installed)
    2) Tail lights (OEM) (received / installed)
    3) Headlights (OEM) (received / installed)
    4) Hurst Chrome Billet Plus Shifter (received / installed)
    5) Cobra R hood (Cervini's)
    6) side scoops (Cervini's)
    7) 03-04 Cobra front/rear bumpers.
    8) 03/04 Cobra rear wing
    9) Maximum Motorsports suspension
    10) Kooks Headers (Ceramic)
    11) Magnaflow's catted H-Pipe / New Flowmasters
    12) Under drive pulley's
    13) Repaint
    14) New throttle body/mass air sensor/ intake manifold
    15) Mach 1 grille delete (ordered/awaiting arrival)
    16) Chin Spoiler (ordered/awaiting arrival)

    I am not into building a fierce street racer, but only a reliable mid to upper 300hp sleeper. My racing and ticket days are far behind me. But I do still love the sound and power of a Mustang GT that is fun to drive and reliable. I had too many stangs in the past that ended in trouble with the law. But, being relocated to Puerto Rico, there is plenty of winding and country style roads to cruise all day on. The only thing bad about having a muscle car on the island is that johnny law is always on the look out for them. Ricers and foreign car tuners are always being overlooked. Not to mention most islanders can not or do not want to afford the fuel vs a economy car. I told my wife when I retired a few months ago that I wanted a Mustang GT when we get to the island. And I searched for a solid month on this island for a good survivor foxbody, but I be damn if I can find one. So I happen to come across this 99 GT. Low miles, but done up wrong on the suspension side and ride quality. So grabbed it up fast and plan on spending my new found time off to fix on it slowly and make it a nice sleeper to take on long rides through the countryside, mountains. I will keep up with my progress and posts pics. But like I said, it is a progress in the making. The wife after 20 yrs of marriage has agreed to give me enough rope to by parts and make repairs on a monthly budget. So that is what I am going to do. Last thing I need is a pissed off wife that hates my car. But so far she loving the car, especially since I just bought her a brand new ride with only 6 miles on the odometer. Only thing that seems to bother her is that she has to still work. Thanks for listening, and I will keep refreshening my GT.
    #7 stangr5oh, Aug 5, 2014
    Last edited: Aug 29, 2014
    trombonedemon likes this.
  8. What the traffic laws in that country?
  9. The laws are the same as the US as it is a regulated US territory. The problem is that hardly anyone abides by the laws.

    I received my PR license 06/07/14 and within 5 minutes of receiving it I got pulled over in the Stang with the wife in the car and received a ticket for supposedly running a red light. I was pissed to say the least as it has been over 15 yrs since I got a ticket. And the intersection lights in my direction were all green to include the left turn lane and the oncoming traffic was red, where the cops were sitting. They claimed I made a u-turn while the light was red, $250.00 for that one, welcome to the island my wife said.

    I been coming here for almost 20 yrs as my wife is Puerto Rican and the drivers have just gotten worse and worse year after year. Everyone runs red lights, makes illegal turns, pulls out into traffic in any direction. You really need to be alert and careful when driving here.

    Insurance laws are way different than US though. If you buy a brand new vehicle from a dealer, then you are to pay for insurance up front for at least the 1st year and maintain that coverage for at least 3 years from date of sale. Then you can get rid of the insurance all together. The government here covers every driver up to 3k when you are at fault, and that 3k is for the other driver, you are not covered at all. If you purchase a used car from either a dealer or individual, you are not required to carry insurance as the same 3k coverage law is in place. The downside to it is that you pay out of pocket any damage over that amount to the other vehicle and your own vehicle repairs comes out of pocket too. Unless you have full coverage which is attainable for around $700.00 a year regardless who you are. The other difference here vs US is when you buy a used car like I did with the Stang, the taxes were paid in Feb 2014 by the previous owner. Since they were paid in Feb, I did not have to pay anything to DMV when I bought it, no transfer fees, title fees, or sales tax. I pay the yearly registration renewal tax next Feb. It cost me nothing to buy this stang other than the sales price. If you buy new vehicle, you pay tax, title and reg. for around $500.00. But they do have yearly vehicle inspections here, which is a joke. As everyone has a friend or a family Joe that knows someone or works as an inspector and the hunk of junk passes. But if you are not in the referral loop, then you are damned if you do not pass.

    But once you get on the mountain roads and old countryside, it is nice and peaceful and beautiful driving. I promised my wife that when it came time to retire, I would consider retiring here and allow her to be with her family. As I have spent most of my life deployed in foreign lands. And with all the travels she has made over the past 20 yrs in my efforts to remain a soldier, I thought it to be fair to compromise on this issue. So here we are in the tropics far away from my family.
    trombonedemon likes this.
  10. Well as I mentioned before this is my progress thread of things I do to this car, small or large or just out of the ordinary.

    I took the wiper blade arms off today as they are paint faded and look like crap from all the weather exposure and sanded them down, primed and painted them. Once they were done, reinstalled them and they look brand new again. I always hate the fact of looking out the windshield and seeing faded discolored wiper arms.
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  11. Well I received the MIL Eliminators, and got them installed.

    Wait and see in the next 30-50 miles to see if it takes care of the PO420 and PO430 codes.
  12. Well after 3 weeks, received my tail lights in (OEM) and was able to get rid of the euro tail lights.



    Much better than those euro's in my opinion.
    trombonedemon likes this.
  13. Well yesterday I got to change out the spark plugs and today the fuel filter. Everything seems to be in order. Runs better, hopefully I can acheive better mpg as I keep at the replacing of the normal wear parts.
  14. Well got the hurst shifter on order with Summit Racing, should be here in 2 business days. Next will be the chin spoiler and mach I grille delete.
    #14 stangr5oh, Aug 23, 2014
    Last edited: Aug 27, 2014
  15. Great thread stangr5oh! Enjoying the read. Just a word of advice on the Mach 1 Grill delete kit. When removing the push pins on the factory setup, use caution! The pins in the image below are difficult to get out and the plastic on the header panel below can be brittle. If the plastic tabs on the header panel break then you are left with a sloppy hanging bumper as this portion provides a great amount of structural support! I performed this apperance upgrade on my 01 GT and really liked the results!

    Best of Luck!

    stangr5oh likes this.
  16. Cool, thanks for the heads up. I have been waiting on the kit to come into stock at AM. I just got an e-mail alert from them on the 21st and then again today, but it is not so. The kit comes with the grille delete and also the chin spoiler, well each time they say it is in stock, it is one piece and not both at the same time.

    The shifter will be here today, and the headlights will be here tomorrow. I purchased the shifter rubber boot at PEP Boys for the Hurst shifter, and I am going to mess around with it to make it fit and hopefully make it look liek a Ford option instead of the stock shifter vinyl boot. And try and use the chrome trim ring that comes with the rubber boot. I purchased another shifter plastic bezel to experiment with and go from there. The goal is to make the bezel opening square instead of oval.
  17. Well got the shifter in tonite. Going to install her in the morning. The headlights came into the island today also, should receive them tomorrow evening.

    I also ordered today from American Muscle a combo package which consists of the mach 1 chin spoiler and grille delete. When I got the e-mail today of it back in stock I called and I also went online sure enough it was in stock as a complete package. And ordered a OEM set of Cobra emblems for the grille, both fenders and the SVT badge for the trunk lid. I did not buy them to impress or mislead the GT for a Cobra. I bought them as I love the Cobra emblem so much more than the running horse for the grille, and the 35th Anniversary edition badges on the side. 35th Anniversary, BLAH-BLAH. Still a GT. I remember I bought the Cobra emblems and put them on my decked out Mark VIII. But later on this year I will be purchasing the Cobra bumpers for the front and rear, along with the rear decklid cobra spoiler. So it will go hand and hand with one another.

    And maybe, just maybe with a little stroke of luck I maybe able to locate an era correct Cobra motor here on the island relatively cheap. We will see though.
  18. Well I got the shifter installed today. Took it out for a test run for about 75 miles, enjoying the ride. The new Hurst shifter is so precise and smooth when shifting. 10x better than the stock shifter.

    I was in the process of installing and got the old shifter out, then I realized I did not have any RTV to seal the base plate and spacer to the tranny opening. Had to put the old shifter back in and head down to PepBoys to get some. That sucked ass for sure. But all good.
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  19. Well I got the new headlights installed today, out with the crappy euro projectors and in with the AM black OEM, much better, and got the windows tinted, along with the taillights and side markers tinted. Also I rent to the tire store and had them put on a new replacement rear driver tire as the one I received mounted on the rim from American Muscle had a bead rip that happened when they mounted the tires and rims. So all good now. Still awaiting for the chin spoiler and grille delete to come in.
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    #19 stangr5oh, Aug 29, 2014
    Last edited: Aug 29, 2014
  20. Looking good!! One other thing on the grille and chin spoiler. Those grille pins are definitely easy to break as said above. Also, the chin spoiler I bought came with a similar type of pins. I used small stainless nuts and bolts on mine instead and have had zero issues. Worth the $4 or so it cost to use them instead of plastic fasteners.
    newedgejay likes this.