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Discussion Starter #21
Read the instructions

I spent years writing instructions for use for medical devices. You would think that would instill an inclination to carefully read every set of instructions one comes across. Most of the time, but sometimes your brain stops taking in information when it believes it has the critical piece of data. For example:

"The spindles are marked DSS (Driver Side Spindle) and PSS (Passenger Side Spindle)." - I thought this was the critical piece of information, as I was trying to determine which was which. Oh, it's stamped on the part. Great. So we tossed one on last Sunday, but then the steering arm seemed wrong.

So last night I revisited the passengers side set up and it was wrong. After staring at the pictures and much head scratching I *read* the manual again.

"These refer to the way they are mounted on the FFR Hot Rod. Which is rear steer The FFR Roadster uses these as Front steer so they are mounted opposite, The DSS spindle is mounted on the Passenger side and the PSS spindle is mounted on the Driver side."

Well. That explains a lot.

Pulled it apart and switched the spindle. Only the bottom castle nut is torqued down, mainly to see if I'd need a washer to align the cotter pin properly. It will. Looks true for the top castle nut too. Haven't adjusted the upper control arm yet. Does the rest of the setup look correct?

Foster
 

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Discussion Starter #23
Headers

I also spent some time on the engine. Hit all the rusty bolts with WD-40 and got the headers off. They are riddled with dents, but as this is my first time up close and personal with a set of SBF headers, I'm not sure what an acceptable amount of abuse is. It seems to me like too many dents is going to screw with the exhaust flow. Thoughts?

If they are salvageable, any recommendations for painting/coating them. Lots of options it seems, I'm wondering what's been successful.

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...They are riddled with dents, but as this is my first time up close and personal with a set of SBF headers, I'm not sure what an acceptable amount of abuse is.

Foster
All of those indentations and "dents" are factory installed! They aren't abused; this is the way Ford made the OEM 5.0 Mustang headers. Honestly, I'd toss them and pick up a set of BBK shorties for about two hundred bucks---because it's easy for me to spend your money!

Jeff
 

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As Jeff says, spend your money .>:) Just for future reference, dents and ding in headers have no effect on exhaust flow. Can't find it now, but there is a video on testing the HP reduction on a dyno with dented headers, It's amazing how much damage was inflected on the headers, with no HP loss.
 

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Discussion Starter #26
Progress and Questions.

Thanks for the feedback Jeff and Rich. I'll consider the shorty headers. It looks like they will work with J-pipe setup I ordered.

Great father's day at the garage today. The boys and I got the driver's side suspension in. We also assembled the front brakes and put those on. Which leads to question #1.

Q1 - Are these the correct bolts for mounting the calipers to the spindle? They threaded in nicely and seemed correct, but I'd appreciate the confirmation, as I didn't see a clear picture in the manual.

With the brakes installed and stomachs growling, the boys were getting impatient to leave. I wanted to tackle at least one more thing, so we pulled the steering rack out. We quickly discovered that the spreader we'd just used to mount the driver's side lower control arm would be needed again, this time on both steering rack mounts. A little convincing and the steering rack dropped in place. We then attached the tie rods and linked those to the tie rod arms.

With both ends attached, I grabbed one of the spindles and gave it a twist. The opposite spindle turned in unison. Both boys celebrated the sudden transformation of the frame into something one step closer to a car. What a great moment, all of us beaming with the progress we'd made.

Of course, I'll have to back a bit of it up for corrections. I'd forgotten that we didn't finished drilling the holes for the F panel due to a snapped drill bit. I'll pull the upper control arm off to get access. No big deal. We considered this a dry run, nothing has been torqued down yet. Which leads to question 2.

Q2 - for the lower control arms, does it matter where the spacers are placed? I put them in where the obvious gaps were, front or back, but I'd appreciate a confirmation.

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Discussion Starter #27
Roadster meet garage

The video of loading the roadster at FFR is linked back in post #15. Below is the link to the tail end of that day.

As I mentioned, there was one measurement that I overlooked - the distance between the loading dock and the truck bed, as defined by the loading step on the back of the truck! Whoops.

And the height of the ramp was dead on too! Oh well, I decided to pull the body to lighten the total weight. The long middle section of the video is me trying to get the bottom two mounting screws out while the body is pinned against the wall of the truck. I finally got smart and applied a set of vice grips to the problem. My friend can be seen unloading the majority of the complete kit boxes over that time.

We pulled the body, decided to move it out of the way in case the frame got away from us on the ramp, and used the roller dollies I had to move the frame into the garage. From there we muscled it up onto the jack stands. The video shows a couple of frames where the measuring tape comes out. There was room against the back wall for the body and body buck, but only if I moved the shelves around. I put that off for another day as we used a blanket to sweep the truck - didn't want to pay the any cleaning fees on return - and then headed out for the traditional beer and pizza payment.


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Discussion Starter #28
Progress Update

I ended up working on a dozen small bits of the car this weekend. I finished painting the F, firewall, and front foot box panels. In between coats I put some time in on the engine, cleaning off the dirt and debris from the top and pulling one valve cover. Things didn't look great. I got the rear axle up on it's own jack and started stripping it down for repainting. I'm guessing the aluminum disk on the rotor is a spacer of some sort (off and on pics below). Could someone tell me exactly what it's function is? Thanks in advance.

My wife and I also visited Factory Five on Saturday. My rear shocks had come in and we were going to be in that part of the state anyway. It was her first opportunity to sit in a completed roadster and she's looking forward to future rides in ours. I also swapped out my cut vinyl dash for an aluminum blank so I can customize the layout.

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You're right, that engine doesn't look great. It has taken a lot of water or been in an environment which exposed it to a great deal of condensation. Either way that much rust internally is not good.

The "disc" on the rear axle is a wheel spacer, but being lug-centric rather than hub-centric is not a good one. What is the rear end from? Unless you end up using wheels with some rather unconventional offset and backspacing you shouldn't need a spacer but if you do use ones that pilot the rims on the hub and not the lugs.

Jeff
 

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Discussion Starter #30
Thanks Jeff. The rear is from the same Mustang parts yard as the engine and transmission, but I don't have any specifics. I'm using the 15x8/9 5-lug Halibrands from FFR. Once I get those, I'll check the fit and go with hub-centric if I need a spacer.

I wanted to do a complete tear down on the engine anyway, so I'm not too concerned yet. We will see how I feel when I can see the cylinder walls.
 

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Discussion Starter #31
Questions & Answers

Over the many years that I've read build threads I've often wished for more regular updates on the builds I was following. I planned on knocking out regular updates when I started my build. The universe had other plans. :)

Long story short, a leaky ice maker feed line lead to pulling up the floor, which led to discovering the prior owners had also had a leak and had opted to just cover up the damage. And the black mold. So, out came the subfloor, damaged cabinets, stove, fridge, and dishwasher. All of which led to damaging the gypcrete sub-subfloor. Couple of months later and I've got everything repaired and a new floor installed in the kitchen.

The build has languished a bit as a result, with the boys and I finally getting to the garage on Sunday after all of July off.

Which leads to one progress pic and one question. The question involves the long center mounting bolt for the clutch quadrant. It seems too long (see pic). It's a 2 inch bolt, but is listed in the manual as 1.25". It was in the bag with the clutch quadrant.

Should I source a 1.25" bolt and swap it out?

Progress this week included drilling and mounting the firewall and pedal box panels. Miles went through 4 drill bits. Nathaniel spent time grinding rust and paint off the rear end while we went out to buy more drill bits. The front suspension is complete, with the exception of one damaged hub cover which needs to be replaced. It got hammered into place a little too zealously. There's GE Silicone 2 oozing out all over the place that needs to be cleaned up. And the silver rivets on the F panels were replaced with black ones - they look better against the trunk bed liner sprayed there.

So, things continue to be messy and mistakes continue to be made, but the boys are learning quickly. Initial grumpiness about being in the garage always turns to smiles and pride when the day's progress results in Frankie looking even incrementally more like a car. This Sunday it was Nathaniel's turn to really not want to be there and he's the one who ended up climbing into the frame with a big smile when the pedal box went in. :)

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Discussion Starter #32
August Progress

We were back to work this weekend on the pedal box. We had rough fit it last weekend to ensure we had it assembled correctly. I did notice that I'd put the pedal switches mount plates on the wrong side of the pedal box frame. Then I noticed that both switches needed to be mounted as far onto those plates as possible so they didn't hit the mounting bracket.

With those small adjustments made, we put the pedal box back on the frame to mark the needed drill holes. I caught the problem early this time, realizing that the holes would be off by 1/4" or so if the pedal box wasn't tight against the footbox front panel. I tossed a few nuts on and sure enough the holes shifted down.

Miles did an excellent job drilling out the holes through the frame - a tricky bit of work given that it's on a slight downward angle.

With the pedal box mounted we started in on the steering. We already had the front rack in place, so we checked the distance between the two tie rods and adjusted them until we reached the recommended 53 1/16" distance.

When we went to torque the castle nuts down they didn't reach 25 ftlbs. They eventually were just spinning in place. Anyone have any insight on that?

We then assembled the steering rack. That went pretty easily, but I see now that the PDF version of the manual is different than the hard copy. That'll lead me to double-checking everything next time I'm in the garage. The biggest help would have been to not mount the flange bearing to the footbox wall first. That gave us a little trouble when it came to pushing the shaft through. All in all I think it took us 25 minutes to get it all together. At which point we had to assemble the steering wheel and toss that on there. Big smiles all around at that moment.

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I recommend you move the flange bearing to the inside of the foot box. This will make it much easier to fit the steering shaft onto the rack, which you will very much appreciate when you're trying to make the steering wheel level with the rack centered. You may have to grind the top of the flange so that it doesn't interfere with the bolt.


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steering column

hopefully you didn't snug the wheel and adapter down too tight since you have to remove it for the dash. I was excited too to get the steering wheel on and ended up having to tap the adapter off with a plastic dead blow hammer.
 

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Discussion Starter #35
I recommend you move the flange bearing to the inside of the foot box. This will make it much easier to fit the steering shaft onto the rack, which you will very much appreciate when you're trying to make the steering wheel level with the rack centered. You may have to grind the top of the flange so that it doesn't interfere with the bolt.


John
The pictures don't show it, but the steering rack is completely assembled. We didn't have any issues getting anything to fit. We built it from the rack up to the wheel in pieces, as it all came disassembled. Maybe that aided in avoiding the fit problem? I'll take another look at the entire thing next time I'm in the garage.

That's one of the maddening things about building this with a garage 40 minutes away, I can't just step out to check something when a question or issue comes up.

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Discussion Starter #36
hopefully you didn't snug the wheel and adapter down too tight since you have to remove it for the dash. I was excited too to get the steering wheel on and ended up having to tap the adapter off with a plastic dead blow hammer.
Thanks for the warning. I hand tightened the bolt and the cover is only loosely on as well.

I was going back through your build posts today because I thought I remembered someone advising not to install the cockpit panels until after the brake and fuel lines and the wires had been laid out. I came across the clutch quadrant post and that answered my question about where that center nut and bolt were - missing it seems. I think I used the clutch stop bolt instead. So, I'll pull that and get a replacement.
 

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Discussion Starter #37
Aug/Sep Update

It's been nearly a month since my last update. The boys were away for a chunk of August and then I was away to kick off September.

Progress has been made, but it's not really the exciting kind.

Foot boxes - we cleaned, primed, and painted all the foot box panels that would be facing the engine bay. It eats up a lot of time, but the end result is satisfying.

While Nathaniel was spraying and cleaning, Miles was trying to remove the last bits of the quad shock brackets from the rear end. It seemed like they would just come off with a chisel and some pounding, but after an hour of the teenager being too nervous to go full smash with a hammer near his hand (Dad's advice: the only way your going to learn to not hit your hand is to smash it good once or twice. That's how I learned. :) ) and my full on smashing often interrupted by too much pain in my hand, not from immediate smashing mind you, but from 30 years of keyboard damage, I decided the project needed a power tool solution.

We will rent a cut off wheel from HD and go at it on Sunday. Then we can drain the fluids, paint it, and put the brakes back on.

We did a dry run on installing the rear end. Only one of the frame mounts needed a bit of spreading out and we got a good idea of where everything went. That also revealed that the traction lock brackets needed some filing down to fit better. It wouldn't snug up against the axle.

I also wondered about drilling the hole in the pumpkin flange. From a quick eyeballing, it looks like drilling will widen the current hole rather than creating a new one. The existing hole and the traction lock brace hole are nearly lined up. Is that going to be a problem?

I tore down my 302 another few steps as well. Oil pan and related components are off. Cylinders are all out. They are filthy but I don't see any physical damage. I don't see any damage on the cylinder walls, but I can't tell if they need just cleaning or a bit more. I've got to find a local engine shop to get the block cleaned as my next step. I've just got to pull the harmonic balancer, the cam, and the crank shaft and the block will be ready for cleaning and whatever other touch ups it needs.

Which brings me to a recent purchase off the classified section here. I hooked up with shady302 and got a complete MassFlo kit. I'm starting the research on that so I can figure out how to make it work with the proper fuel pickup and pump.

There it is. Things continue to get done, just not a lot of visible progress. I do feel like we are set up for a lot of things to come together pretty quickly in the near future.

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Discussion Starter #38 (Edited)
September Updates

Slow progress the last two Sundays, but progress nonetheless.

We ground off the last of the quad shock mounts on the rear axle, which set us up to paint it prior to mounting it on the frame. Our challenge was masking off the differential cover. It's an aluminum Ford Performance Racing dif cover and I couldn't get any tape to stick it it. Since I had to change out the fluid anyway we ended up pulling it off, putting into a plastic garbage bag, and then mounting it back onto the pumpkin. The bag was then taped shut over the dif cover.

With the paint done, we were able to install the upper link bracket. With that tightened down we could drill out the hole in the pumpkin. While that was happening, the rear shocks got assembled - as much as it slows me down to teach while we build, it seems like I get all or even more of that time back by having three dedicated builders. Once Miles and Nathaniel know how to do a task, they can take it over and we can be working on multiple projects in parallel.

The cockpit floors were masked off and truck bed liner applied to where they are exposed to the road under the car. I'm going to hold off on installing those until we run the brake and fuel lines so that we have as much access as possible.

We also finished breaking down the 302. It took me three tries to get the harmonic balancer off the block - the instructions that came with the puller tool I rented were poor and thus I installed it backwards twice before giving up on the instructions and figuring out how the mechanism worked against itself to pull the balancer off. With that done, Miles unscrewed the caps and Nathaniel sorted them into marked aluminum baking pans. I've located two shops that do engine cleaning and maintenance and so the next step is to get quotes and the figure out what can be salvaged.

It seems far away, but the engine and drive train install is getting closer and so we've got to get the engine sorted out. I also still need to order a flywheel and clutch.

So, we are prepped to install the rear end to the frame next Sunday. FFR tells me my back ordered wheels should show up this month, which would get our project looking a lot more like a car than it does now.

Homework when I'm not in the shop - learning about my MassFlo system and how to plumb it into the fuel system properly. So, lots of reading about fuel pumps, pickups, filters, pressure, and lines in my future.

Problems/issues - Noticed the steering rack hitting the frame. Have to double back to add some spacers under the mount. Bigger issue - had more or less decided on a red car, but saw silver_pilate's post and am now back to undecided. :)

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Discussion Starter #39
October progress

It took us two Sundays, but we – mostly - got the rear end in place.

We started off putting the diff cover back on and getting ready to fill it. We got the cover on and bolted down, at which point we have to torque down the two support bolts and then torque down their two lock nuts. I break out the torque wrench and take care of the two support bolts. Then I go at the first lock nut – and right when it hits 20lbs, it tears the support bolt in half. Surprising. I figure I can replace it and move onto the second bolt. Same thing, sheers right off.

With the diff cover iffy, I decided not to load it with fluid, so we moved onto getting the rear end attached to the car. We’d already tried this out once, so we got it into position pretty easily. At that point we discovered that we had two missing nuts to secure the lower shock mounts.

We also had a challenging time getting the bolt in place for the panhard bar, but that seemed to resolve with a little pounding. I’m guessing it was just the powder coating, once cleaned out things fit fine. That took us to the usual point where we were all getting hungry, so we cleaned up and headed home.

I figured out that evening that my torque wrench starts at 20ftlbs. So, I over-torqued the support bolts and then they let go when I torqued down each lock nut. I searched for replacement support bolts, but could only find the entire diff cover package. So I bit the bullet and bought the same cover – a Gen 2 upgrade at least – and dug out my dad’s old-school torque wrench.

We brought that stuff up this last Sunday. Step one, pull the old diff cover off. Easily done. Maybe I can sell it used if someone out there has a cracked cover, but can salvage the support bolts. I replaced the one-week-old gasket, assuming it had some warping from being over torqued and I had a new one that came with the replacement cover.

The cover went on easily and torqued down with no issues and no damage. Having a torque wrench that started at zero and incremented by single foot-pounds was key. It’s always great when I can use one of my dad’s tools on the project. He’s contributing even though he’s not here.

With the cover on we set about filling the diff with fluid. To do this we had to fill it from the fill port on the cover while watching for overflow from the drain port on the pumpkin. Looking at the drain port I noticed the drain plug had a square hole – none of my hex wrenches would fit in there, but a 3/8” ratchet extension fit perfectly.

Nathaniel was skeptical about that solution, claiming it was luck. I pointed out that there were several things going on:

1. Ford doesn’t want just anyone pulling the pumpkin drain plug.

2. Someone who has seen enough socket sets would figure it out. I’d been working with sockets for almost 40 years now.

3. A primary reason for building the car was to demonstrate problem solving in addition to learning practical skills.

I don’t think he was impressed, but at least he wasn’t chalking it up to luck anymore. We added the friction modifier and just over 2 quarts of diff fluid.

With that finished we reattached the panhard bar and bolted down the brace from the traction lock bracket we’d overlooked last week. At that point I figured we’d toss the rear calipers back on. Turns out they interfere with the rear shocks, so now I’ve got to find a replacement set of rear calipers. And the two missing bolts for the lower shock connections.
 

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...At that point I figured we’d toss the rear calipers back on. Turns out they interfere with the rear shocks, so now I’ve got to find a replacement set of rear calipers...
I just posted a reply in your other thread RE: calipers and explained that swapping them to the forward location can solve the interference problem that occurs with large rotors HOWEVER there was not a photo in that post---now that I see a picture it is evident that you have the smaller rotors and the problem is that you have the calipers on the wrong sides. Put them where they belong and you should have clearance. I still prefer to mount them in the forward location because it makes for simpler parking brake routing but whether you wish to do that or just move the calipers to the correct sides is up to you.

Jeff
 
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