Of Automotive Repair Or Restoration…
Any automotive repair or restoration project will cost twice as much and take twice as long as originally planned, even after careful prior consideration of MustangSteve’s Law.
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Modify GT Exhaust Trumpets
First, take a ball peen hammer and beat the louvers (carefully and evenly) up into the trumpet as far as you can. You want to make them concave into the pipe as far as possible. Now take a die grinder with a cutoff wheel and keep going round and round inside the flare until the louver is removed. There is an inner pipe that is welded to the outer stainless piece. By doing it that way, they will stay as one piece.
Now, if you want to eliminate the 1-3/4" necked down pipe on the upstream side, just take a hacksaw and cut the whole end off so it is about the same ID as the OD of a 2-1/4" tail pipe. Then weld the 2-1'4" tail pipe into the cut off part of the stainless trumpet, being sure to weld to both the inner tube and the outer stainless flared trumpet. You now have 2-1/4" straight through without the restrictive louvers. The reason I do not like the aftermarket flared ends is because they are not double walled as described above. They just look cheap to me...
Replacing Door Hinge Bushings And Pins On A ‘79 Or Newer Mustang (MORE early model hinge info...)
I just replaced the hinges pins and bushings in my daughter's 88 LX. The parts came from a HELP kit found at nearly any parts house. Stack up some wood under the door to support it in the open position so it does not drop down when you remove the pins. The hard part is getting the old pins out as there is no room to get any tools in there. I used a die grinder with a deburring bit and just ground on the middle of the hinge pin until it was in two equal pieces. Drive it out with a punch after cutting it in half. Drive the old bronze bushings out of the hinge body. Push the new bushings in to their holes, align the door to the bushings, and then stick the new hinge pin in place. The ones I bought had a cotter pin type hole in the end so I just had to insert the supplied spring clip and the job was complete. ( I also replaced the strike bolt because the plastic on it was broken. It was also a HELP part and was around $14.00. A new weatherstripping kit was installed on the door frame and now the door feels like a new one.
Heater Core Replacement in 64-1/2 to 66 Mustang (for 79-93 Heater Core, click HERE)
This is not a tough job, and even a novice can handle it with relative ease. Keep in mind that reinstallation might be easier with a friend to help hold things while you get the bolts started. First, you will need to round up the stuff you will need to do the job. You obviously will need a new heater core. You should also plan on replacing the seals in the heater core box. Mustang vendors sell a kit for this purpose. It will make it easier to replace them. If you are doing this on the cheap as I have often done, you can get some craft foam from a hobby store and cut it to make your own seals. Either way, you will need some contact cement or weatherstrip adhesive to install it. You will also need about 6 feet of 5/8" heater hose and 4 clamps unless the old clamps are reusable. (see TESTING THE NEW HEATER CORE before going any further) Now for removal. Drain the antifreeze and dispose of it properly. Then, take a knife and cut both heater hoses about 4" in front of the firewall (engine side). Take compressed air or a garden hose and flush the hoses going into the heater core with air or water. Cover the open hose with a rag while doing this to avoid getting coolant sprayed at you. This will keep you from dumping coolant on your carpet when you remove the heater box. Under the dashboard, you will need to remove the 2 hoses that go from the heater plenum to the defroster ducts. Also, under the dashboard there is one bolt that goes vertically to hold the heater box to a bracket under the cowl. It is near the passenger side door hinge and you will need to stand on your head with a flashlight to see it. It is either 3/8" or 7/16" hex head if a previous owner has not changed it. Use a socket with a long extension to remove it. Next, go to the engine compartment and unplug the wires going to the heater blower motor. Then remove the four nuts surrounding the blower motor. You have now disconnected everything that is holding the heater box to the car. Back under the dash, you can then pull the heater box down from the cowl by sliding the blower motor and the two hoses through their holes in the firewall. After you get it loose, you can then disconnect the three cables that come from the heater control panel. Disconnect them from the heater box, not the control panel. Remove the heater box from the car. The heater box is held together with steel clips. Simply insert a screwdriver behind them and pry them off. Watch out as they will fly if not careful. Split open the box and you will see the heater core. Clean everything up and rebuild the box with new seals and core and reinstall the clips. Install a suitable length of heater hose to each heater core connection and clamp it tightly in place before reinstalling the heater box under the dash. Connect the 3 cables. Feed the two hoses through the holes in the dash, followed by the blower motor and reinstall the box. Install that vertical bolt first to hold everything in place before continuing. Reconnect the defroster hoses and then reconnect the heater hoses. The lower hose coming from the firewall goes to the high pressure side of the system, or the intake manifold on v-8 cars. You want the water entering the heater core to flow from the bottom-up to avoid air bubble problems. Reconnect all the wires and everything else you took apart and you are in business. RELATED ISSUES you may want to cover While You Are In There: Is the cowl leaking? Install cowl vent repair kits while the heater is out. You may also want to install new defroster ducts, hoses and a new plastic plenum. These parts are not expensive and are much easier to replace with the heater out. Also, consider installing a new engine thermostat while the coolant is drained from the engine. You may want to consider installing a manual valve or even a cable controlled valve in the lower heater hose right before it enters the firewall on the engine side. This will allow you to cut off the flow of hot water into the core in the summer. it makes a BIG DIFFERENCE in the temperature inside the car in the summer.
Testing The New Heater Core (applies to ALL Mustangs)
Do this BEFORE installing it into the car and before you drain the coolant from the engine. Here is how. First, clamp a c-clamp or vise grips to flatten each heater hose about 6" from their connection to the intake manifold or water pump. That acts like a valve to block flow. Cut the existing heater hoses about 4" away from the firewall. Take the loose hoses you just cut and install each one to one of the connections on the heater core. Clamp tightly in place. Remove the vise grips or clamps to allow water flow. Place a thick towel on the fender and lay the heater core on the towel. Start the car and allow it to warm up and pressurize the coolant system. if the core is going to leak, it will do so as soon as the system gets hot. If no leaks, then continue with the installation. For Another Test Method...