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Junior Charter Member
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730 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
I had intended to start a build log a while back and keep it current with my continued progress. The actual build progress is going well, but the build log was limited to my album of digital photographs and a few isolated prior posts, largely on the originality forum. So in order to: 1) give back to all those who have helped me by contributing their wisdom, experience, creativity and problem solving skills; 2) ‘pay it forward’ to those who are planning their builds or are early in the process; 3) remind me of all of the fun, some frustrations, and many good times with family and friends resulting directly from the build; and 4) provide a permanent story that my grandkids will read when they get to that point in their lives, I hereby happily contribute this build log to all of you. I will try to post regularly with ample photos and some story line as well. I hope you enjoy it. Here's to all of you and these amazing cars.
Regards,
Ron
 

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Alright Picah, nice you join the madness hehe.

I like the approach to pay it forward.


Ok, then use the pay it first. That means you choose a payed picture host, like I use....

ImageEvent- Share photos, videos, documents online.

Just around $30 a year and all your pictures are secure and fast accessible. I store there right now about 6000 pictures --- again for $30 a year. I have public and non public sections and sections with guest passwords accessible.

I would say very little money compare to your overall project.


Your family and friends can post comments an follow without being tied to a specific forum. Check it out and happy wrenching!!!!
 

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Junior Charter Member
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730 Posts
Discussion Starter #3
Delivery day - the madness begins

I was a lurker on this forum for many years before my first posts, so I know the rules: no pictures = didn’t happen. I plan on posting lots of pics to document my build and delivery day is generally a good starting point. Here’s is the proof. Enjoy.

Here's the truck that we all have waited for:


Then the door opens and the giant smile begins:


and the car appears:


and it enters the garage:


and the first of various community rules is broken (he he he):
 

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If your community has a noise rule,that can be the second rule broken:001_smile: You should get a sticker made for that street sign , "Cobra parking only"
 

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Junior Charter Member
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730 Posts
Discussion Starter #5
community noise rule

Yeah, I'm actually looking forward to edging up to the noise rule. But the guy with the loud thumping motorcycle (and the super loud radio to hide the engine noise - yeah, right!) probably has set the bar very high. If they don't mess with him, I would need to go with open headers to get any attention !!
Ron
 

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Junior Charter Member
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730 Posts
Discussion Starter #6
Labeling some parts (before they come off !!)

So the car is in the garage and there is a tremendous eagerness to start taking parts off so the process of putting parts on can begin. However, this is when I would recommend taking many pictures before dismantling begins. As many as I took I still look back wishing I had taken a few more.

Also, wanted to avoid the “where does this part go” syndrome, so I put some deliberate time in labeling some key parts that are known as causing problems later in the build. The front and rear quick jack/bumper bolts certainly fall into this category. Here’s how I attempted to make it as fool proof as possible. Came in real handy as I had a build party with some of my buddies and the labels paid off!!





Regards,
Ron
 

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Junior Charter Member
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730 Posts
Discussion Starter #7
Check out my non-donor build plan - what do you think??

I am an essentially an originality freak with regard to cars in general. That is certainly true in terms of this build. There are lots of great builds out there and some of you reading this are those builders that I have admired and served as my inspiration. I have learned much by reading this forum and I know that a good plan is important. My plan is to have my build result in a reasonably faithful recreation of the 1966 427 S/C (the abbreviation S/C seems to = either Semi Competition or Street Competition, depending on which source you check).

Here are some specifics for the car:

Engine = 390 iron block FE – professional build; faux main cap cross bolts to make this block essentially indistinguishable from a real 427; Avaid oil pan, remote filter location, oil vapor recovery tank, and coolant puke tank.

Induction = EFI (for quick starting, ease of operation and maintenance)

Exhaust = FE headers from FFR, coated inside and out; Gas’N stainless steel sidepipes

Suspension: IRS (just because !) with pro rebuilt aluminum pumpkin with Torsen 8.8 and 3.27 gear set; QA1 double external adjustable coil overs (from Mark at Breeze); Front lower control arms (LCAs) with custom heim joint modification to replace bushing (to allow full suspension motion) (I will post later on how I went about doing this mod); Pin Drive all the way around.

Wheels/Tires: 15" Vintage Wheels real knockoffs with gold anodized spinners (thanks to Bob at Vintage Wheels); Mickey Thompson SRs (DOT legal) ‘dressed’ to look like Goodyear Eagles (not DOT legal)

Steering: Manual FFR rack (3 turns LTL) (I have followed the many debates on manual vs. power and this is just my choice)

Brakes: Manual. Fronts = Wilwood 12.19 cross drilled and slotted rotors, blue powder coated calipers (from Gordon at Levy Racing); rear = Wilwood 12.19 cross drilled and slotted rotors, blue powder coated calipers with internal drum brake ebrake set-up (from Mike Forte) (trying to support all venders !! – Both are great to deal with !!)

Tranny: T5 with upgraded gear set (one of Gordon Levy's that I bought from a forum member)

And I understand (and so does my supportive wife !) that this will not be a budget build. I will keep rough track of the costs but it’s the livelong gift that I give to myself and every day I work on it I feel great !!

More details on all of the 427 S/C specific mods in a future post.

Best
Ron
 

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Plodding Along
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Ron,

Great start - I'm looking forward to watching your build progress.
 

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FFCobra Captain
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11,676 Posts
Sounds like a great build.

If I ever build another one, it would be a 390FE with IRS.
 

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Nice to see another FE build!
I look forward to watching your progress.

I am in the process of building building mine with a 428. I haven't been good about posting reports, but I hope to put together a bunch of photos I've taken over the last year and write a summary of what I've done and learned.
 

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Junior Charter Member
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730 Posts
Discussion Starter #12
Sounds great, but do more research about using a t5 rated at 300ftlbtq with a moderately built FE. Also, please consider the whitby power brake setup.
Al:
Appreciate your thoughts on my component selection. Regarding the brakes, I had conversations with Gordon Levy and he has posted on this very subject on the forum. His very strongly held belief is that with the light weight of the cars and the capability of the 4 piston Wilwoods with E pads all the way around, the car will stop very well and in the event of a panic stop, will not lock up the way that power brakes will almost certainly do. I guess the proof will be in the braking, so to speak. When I get to that point, I will certainly post my impressions with this set-up.

Regarding the T5, I have also had discussions with several people, also to include Gordon. The smooth shifting as compared to other trannys was certainly a draw. This particular upgraded set-up came out of an car raced by one of our forum members and then refreshed by a pro. From what I have reviewed, the upgraded gear set, again in a very light car (and the driver being on the slim side !!), the non particularly sticky tires I will be running will break loose before the tranny does similarly. It will not be my intention to test the extreme limits of the car. I expect my FE will produce just north of 400 hp and ftlbs. The available web reviews of upgraded T5s indicate that they can handle 500 in cars of 3300 lbs. Hopefully, all this is correct and I will not be looking at an expensive fix at some point in the future.

Again, I really do appreciate your thoughts, and for others planning their builds who are reading this build log, cautionary comments should be seriously considered and the associated risks evaluated.

Best
Ron
 

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Junior Charter Member
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730 Posts
Discussion Starter #13
A couple of quality issues - check your parts

So the parts inventory is an exciting time because you get to hold all the cool pieces and dream. But every now and again you find something that is not good. My rear LCAs were backordered but came in fairly quickly. But when I opened the box it became immediately apparent that this pair of LCAs had had a tough life. They had been banged around and the powder coating was flaking off in large pieces. Bad parts prep I presume?





But FFR was there to stand behind their parts and their owners. Sent them back and a good pair of LCAs came back out to me quickly. A bit of a pain but all worked out great. Thanks FFR!!
 

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Ron, everyone has their opinion on what you should or shouldn't do. Here's mine. You won't need PB or PS. A little girl will be able to easily stop the car using minimal effort with those big Wilwoods, and the car is so lite the PS is overkill.
you'll love the Gas-N sidepipes. They are quieter than the FFR units. Your right foot will dictate the decibels. So that and the grey matter between the ears will determine if the neighbours complain about noise. These cars and the thumper bike are only really noisy when you want them to.
Good luck with the build.....wish I was doing another
 

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Senior Member
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10,170 Posts
I gottcha Ron... I will be watching all you are doing, because I am in the planning stages of doing exactly the same thing. I have my FE ready to go and am looking over the trans options. I still worry about the t5 because the break even with mile 5.0's. The makers of the t5 say 300 ft lbs max for this trans... I surely don't know... but I do know you will be putting your foot into it from time to time.... Don't ask me how I know.;) This will be my second build, first one had a 5.o and I loved everything about it , but I swore if I ever built another it would have a FE... I feel ya . Have fun
 

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A number of people that I respect told me not to use a T-5 with the FE that is being built for Roadster #2 (we are officially calling her Clarisse). Being a glutton for punishment I decided not to go with the popular choice of a TKO but managed to acquire just today a very nice used toploader.

I can't say for sure that a T-5 couldn't handle the FE but I wasn't about to tempt it either.
 

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Junior Charter Member
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730 Posts
Discussion Starter #17
Appreciate all the input on mating a mild 390FE to an upgraded T5. Please see below a quote taken from the GForce website regarding this set-up. I'm going on the presumption that there has to be some validity to the claims being made. Am I wrong here?

“The stock T-5 is rated at about 300 ft-lb of torque capacity. While this is fine for stock or lightly modified engine combinations, especially running small street tires, it isn’t generally enough for most of today’s high powered street/strip engine combinations. This is where the G-Force Street 5-Speed kit comes into play. Although we do not like to put torque or horsepower ratings on our products due to the vast differences in clutch, engine, chassis, tire, and mounting combinations, we can give a very rough estimate. There are simply too many variables to consider when trying to figure out how much power or torque a transmission will take in a particular application. Generally, it can be assumed that with the available upgraded mainshaft, the G-Force Street 5-Speed kit will handle roughly 600 hp or 500 ft-lb. of torque in a 3300 lb. vehicle running drag radials at the track with a moderate clutch upgrade. Obviously this is just a rough estimate regarding the power and torque handling capability, but it should give some idea as to what the G-Force Street 5-Speed kit will handle in your particular application.”

Not trying to kick the dead equine here, just sharing what I found.

Best
Ron
 

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Junior Charter Member
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Discussion Starter #18 (Edited)
Getting rid of ugly on the path to originality

Part of my build plan was to eliminate or change some of the aspects of the FF MKIV that scream kit car. One of those is the passenger side fuel tank strap hanger bracket. The way it just sticks out in the rear of the trunk area has always bothered me so I did the surgical amputation and fabricated a bracket that would sit lower as does the driver side hanger bracket does. Didn’t want to buy another shorter strap so my plan also required shortening of the longer passenger side hanger strap. Wasn’t that bad. Here's how I did it:

First, here's the offending bracket in top view as seen with what would be the completed car:


Here's another view with the body removed:


Here's the first part of the surgical removal done with a dremel and bit of cold chisel:


After the first cut the other ones are easier ("the first cut is the hardest"):


Then we need to find what to replace the bracket with and here's the answer - A Tee bracket from your favorite home store:


Next bend the arms in the bench vice:


Then drill a new set of holes in the same relative position as the old bracket and test fit the strap:


Then cut off the end of the vertical part of the "tee" and each of the bent-in legs to the appropriate length as determined from the old bracket and round the corners a bit to make it look better (not that it will be seen he he):


I was first going to bolt the new bracket to the frame and leave it. But with the welder out I just welded it on.

I'll show you how to shorten the stack passenger side fuel tank strap in my next post and then show you how it all worked out after some POR-15

Best,
Ron
 

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Looks like it's going toe a great car!
As far as power stuff, brakes are no big deal but if I were to decide to do much Auto-Xing I'd go with PS. Otherwise, totally unnecessary IMO.
 

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Junior Charter Member
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Discussion Starter #20
Looks like it's going toe a great car!
As far as power stuff, brakes are no big deal but if I were to decide to do much Auto-Xing I'd go with PS. Otherwise, totally unnecessary IMO.
Mike:
Thx for the input. Not much Auto-xing in my plans and I agree that in these light cars not spending a great deal of time at low speeds in parking lots, the manual steering will serve me well. I will definitely discuss the results when I get to that stage in the build

Best
Ron
 
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