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March 2002 Archive

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March 31st, 2002
    Completed the dash today, and installed a few gauges. I also broke the head-light switch assembly, and I'll have to pick up one from the junkyard on Tuesday while I look for a battery tray and hold-down. The water-temperature and oil-pressure gauges were fairly easy to install, although I still have to tap into a dash lighting wire, as well as grounds. Nitrous and Fuel pressure gauges will have to wait until I get the pod for the vent. The tach mounted quite easily as well, and hopefully it's set at the correct angle.. can't quite tell until I get the seats installed. Also re-installed the head-light harness.

    New gallery.

March 29th, 2002
    What a miserable day. I was out there alone for six hours, and ran into one snag after another. The power-steering pump was even easier to install then I expected, and I expected easy. I tried to install my oil-pressure sender where the old one was, but of course, the units have different thread sizes. The water-temperature sender went in without a hitch though. Estimated the serpenine belt size needed to be 73 inches. Canadian Tire's closest size was a 70 inch.. which seemed perfect. Nope. Hopefully they'll let me exchange it for one slightly bigger.

    Removed the heater/blower assembly from the car, which was easier then it looked, only to discover that the heater-core that I purchased FROM the Ford dealership was the incorrect model, and wouldn't fit. I left the old one in, which was functioning fine anyway, and looked to have been a replacement as well. The blower-motor was fairly easy to install as well, and no more squeals!

    The dash-frame went in...somewhat.. I took this thing apart 8 months ago, and have no idea how it goes back together. I really don't like the wiring mess, and would LOVE to tear it all out, and re-wire it myself. I'm certain that I managed to plug everything back in correctly, but I can't get the actual dash to sit into place. Probably just requires another four hours of frustration.

    Moved onto the MSD ignition, as I just couldn't stand being cramped in that car anymore. Drilled four holes and installed the rubber mounts. Screwed msd unit tight. Almost as easy as it looks. Oddly enough the MSD unit appears to be the same colour as the car.

    As with each day consisting of a labour of love, here's the new gallery, and here's the updated Conversion Tech.

March 28th, 2002
    Updated the [Conversion Tech] page.

March 27th, 2002
    Things went somewhat according to plan today, although we did make an unexpected dump-run early on. There's so much space in the garage without the old parts (2.3L motor, a rear-end, full suspension and brakes, broken front seats, etc). We also mangled the old hood with a hammer, and He-man strength

    I also changed the oil in the Escort, and poured the synthetic into the 'stang. Filling the transmission with ATF was easier than I thought it would be.

    Finished installation of the the passenger side header ... just took a little bit of patience, although the bolts are 12 point imperial, and my 12-point sockets won't clear the tubes. The 12-point closed ended wrench was actually unable to access 3 or 4 of the bolts, so I have no idea what I'm going to do to tighten those up.

    I'd heard that it would be necessary to modify floor-pan around the shifter for clearence, and I've heard the opposite. Well, it was necessary. The shifter installed easily, and I'd show the steps but the digital camera's batteries were dead. So, here's the end result.

    The pedal assembly gave us the most trouble today. Installing the quadrant was easy, after we figured out how it worked. Installing the pedal assembly was easy, once we figured out how it would fit. Installing the nuts and bolts was just downright hard. The carriage bolts turned endlessly, and required some serious finess. After bolting everything up, we turned the steering wheel, only to discover that the shaft was grinding against the header. After some useless prying, we then used some washers on the steering shaft to drop it just enough. Smooth as silk.

    Installing the exhaust was a piece of cake. Locating and drilling holes for the rubber hangers was total guesswork, but our patience paid off, as it's hanging exactly where I want it.

    Updated the tech section to reflect today's work.

    As always, here's the [link] to the new gallery of today's progress. Enjoy!

March 26th, 2002
    Dropped off the power-steering pump at Western so they can re-install the pump into the 302 bracket. Asked them about the braided brake line, and apparently the 5.0's use a banjo bolt to secure it to the hard line on the car, while the 2.3's simply thread on like the front lines. Shannon suggested that I check the dealership for a conversion fitting.

    Also returned the infamous propane heater, which really never did impress me with it's output. Picked up the necessary hardware to secure the exhaust to the car.

    At Canadian Tire I bought 5 litres of synthetic oil for the Mustang, and 5 lites of ultra-budget conventional oil for the Escort. $30 vs $4.75. Almost the same ratio as the value of these cars. Also purchased the filters, Black-Majik tire care, and the transmission fluid.

    And last but not least, I picked up my developed photo's and cd, and built a new gallery to house them in. They're slightly dated from last week, but do fill in a lot of gaps where the digital left out. As always, the el-cheapo film camera takes blurry, fuzzy, unpredictable pics, and the gallery reflects that. Click here for pics!

March 25th, 2002
    Unfortunately we were unable to complete everything I had set out to complete today, however we still managed to get quite a bit done considering a few unseen snags.

    The old power-steering pump and bracket was fairly easily removed from the 2.3L motor. I need to take it to Western Motorsports tomorrow and have them swap it into the 302 bracket (The pulley requires a special tool).

    Trevor fought with the removal of the fuel tank while I struggled with the starter. I assumed the bolts I had would fit, and that the starter/bellhousing plate was binding. Trevor assumed he had all the bolts. We were both wrong. The fuel pump was removed by hitting a hammer on a screw driver to twist it from the nearly empty tank. The pick-up tube essentially dropped right in. We decided to hold off on re-installing the tank until we can make sure the fuel line will bolt up.

    As for the starter, a quick trip to Home Depot saved the day. We then began installation of the headers, which I knew would be frustrating, and of course... it was. The driver's side went in easy, and I assumed it would be the difficult one with the steering rack in the way and all. It wasn't. Passenger side is much worse, and we ended up putting it on hold until Wednesday, when I can finish the rest of the exhaust.

    As always, here's the new gallery with pics taken tonight. Notice how many empty boxes are being stored inside the car.

    Updated the Conversion Tech page was well to reflect what was accomplished, and what lies ahead on Wednesday.

March 24th, 2002
    Under [Conversion Tech] you will now find a conversion checklist. It gives you and me an idea of what is left to be done, and what has already been acomplished. It's in the order as completed or as expected. Final deadline for the 'Stang to be on the road and fully operational is April 12th. That gives me approximately three weeks to get her running, which is plenty of time, assuming all parts will be available.

March 23rd, 2002
    Snapped a few shots of the rear suspension and stance of the car today. You can view them in a newly created gallery, [here!]

March 22nd, 2002
    Here's a breakdown of what was completed today:

      Installed offset steering-rack bushings
      Completely removed old rear suspension and 7.5" rear-end
      Bolted in the rebuilt 8.8" rear-end to the new MAC upper and lower control arms
      Placed in the Ford Motorsport 'C' springs
      Installed the Tokico shocks and the 5.0 sway-bar
      Bolted in the Ford Racing aluminum drive-shaft

    We put the wheels back on and set her down to see how it would sit. I'm assuming that it will settle even lower over the next day or so. [Image]

    That leaves us with the drum brakes to install, as well as the braided lines, which I'm having difficulty installing due to missing hardware, and no instructions. At the rate the car is going, I'm going to assume the car will be done in EARLY April.

    Pictures from today's install, as well as more from Wednesday's, will be available asap.

March 20th, 2002
    Slight changes of plans, as we decided to completely (99%) finish the front suspension and brakes. Friday is now the designated day for rear-end stuff, that being the 8.8 rear-end install, suspension, and brakes, as well as the drive-shaft. I used Trevor's digital camera today, so I have loaded yet another gallery of fine pics. You can access that [here!].

    We started the day off by removing the old struts off the old control-arm, and then taking them to Husky to have the top nut removed via air impact gun (Mine's electric, and didn't do the trick). Took him two seconds flat. We were then able to remove the dust-shield, which was the only peice we needed. I still can't believe that neither the Tokico strut nor the Maximum Motorsport c/c plate came with new shields. Not that the old one was damaged, I just prefer to install new parts.

    The new struts bolted right in, and we tightened up the c/c plates. We had a little trouble figuring out the bearings for the new rotors, but over-all it was straight-forward. Installation of the rebuilt calipers and new pads completed the front end. My only concern now is the stainless steel braided brake lines. I don't see how they attach to the calipers, and I'm starting to think that maybe they're for a different year Mustang. [Image of line]

    Western Motorsports called yesterday, my Autometer Phantom 2 5/8" fuel-pressure gauge w/ isolator FINALLY arrived, approx. TWO MONTHS after purchase. I'm really glad I've been buying things in advance for this project, otherwise I might not have the parts to meet my personal deadline of April 1st (Due to weather, I might need to push this date back a week or two).

    Cleaned up the monthly archives.

March 19th, 2002
    BONUS! - Added image gallery from last night's install. Photo-quality is slightly better. [GO!]

    As promised, I have scanned and posted the pictures from the engine install, [here]. Unfortunately due to a combination of poor weather, bad lighting, low camera performance and our neglect, the images are dark and blurry.

March 18th, 2002
    Despite the temperature averaging a frigid -15C today, Trevor and myself managed to get a ton of parts installed today. We started the day off by jacking the car up off all four wheels and setting down on stands as high as possible. We calculated the correct position for the transmission crossmember, and took it down to Western Motorsports for spot welding. A quick stop at Home Depot set us up with the necessary bolts to complete the install of the transmission, as well as a much needed utility light, and a propane heater (Which worked awesome until we ran out of propane). I decided to start on the front suspension as it looked to be more difficult then the rear. After taking a close look at the springs and tie-rods, it was off to Canadian Tire to rent/borrow a spring compressor and tie-rod fork. I'm really glad we had both these tools.

    Even after soaking all the nuts and bolts with WD-40, they remained stiff. My electric impact wrench was seemingly useless at this point and I had to do a lot of ratchet kicking to get those stubborn control-arm bolts loose. Currently, we're on hold until Wednesday, but we managed to remove all of the old front suspension, and install the new Ford Motorsport control-arms, 5.0 sway-bar w/ Energy polyurethane bushings and end-links, Maximum Motorsports castor/camber plates, and the 5.0 spindles. Only the Tokico stuts remain, however, it's not a simple bolt-in quite yet. We have yet to remove the old struts off OLD 2.3L spindles, and thus cannot re-use the bolts or strut dust-covers. I may need access to an air-ratchet, as the top strut bolt spins eternally even with the electric impact, and a set of Vice-Grips firmly latched on the piston.

    Images from last Thursday's motor install will be available tomorrow sometime. Images from today's adventure will be uploaded to the site Wednesday. Wednesday is also the next viable day for more installs, and we plan to finish the front suspension, as well as to start and complete the rear suspension. Brakes are bearings and final touches are due Friday.

March 15th, 2002
    Weather permitting, I plan to install the suspension, rear-end, and brakes Monday, Wednesday and Friday. I'll have pics up of the engine install tomorrow.

March 14th, 2002
    Last night I agreed to a death pact with my buddy Trevor to install the motor today no matter what the weather conditions. It was just above freezing when we started, and then suddenly dropped to absolute zero half-way through. Here's the highlights of the install.

      After installing the flywheel and clutch, we're about to bolt up the bellhousing when I realize that we forgot to install the starter-index plate, so we had to uninstall the clutch and flywheel, and then re-install it. Wee!

      One of the holes in the bellhousing where the transmission bolts up to is stripped, and utterly useless. We ended up using a slightly larger METRIC bolt. That shit-fix worked!

      We manage to drop the motor and transmission into the stang, but something doesn't look right. Yep, the motor-mounts need to be swaped to the CORRECT side.

      Excellent, one of the bolt holes is stripped on the transmission, so we can't bolt up the transmission mount. It will have to wait for another day, as it's friggin' cold out there.

    Overall we got a lot done considering the weather and the many stripped threads. I'm planning to attack the suspension and brakes sometime next week. Pictures from today's install will be up shortly.

March 13th, 2002
    Too cold to do anything but update this site...so I added an image gallery of day shots captured with a digital camera about a week ago. Also organized the image gallery's initial page. Then I cleaned up the links page and spent a few minutes formatting and slightly updating the modifcations page.

March 8th, 2002
    Obviously by now you've noticed the new domain, www.kveder.net

    Snapped a shot of the hole in the front left fender, between the door and the wheel. It was originally covered by the door mouldings, but since those will not be replaced, I need something to cover it up. It's only on the left side. I'm thinking about some sort of emblem. Please email me with any ideas cal.kveder@shaw.ca.

    It's still to frickin' cold to do ANYTHING to the stang, as it's been -20C since I brought this sucka home. Here's some cold pics of the Escort, [ONE], [TWO], [THREE], [FOUR]. Notice the speed decals in the quarter window.

    Archived last months "news".

March 2nd, 2002
    Another biggie! Borrowed a friend's digital camera and took a few pics last night. Check out the galleries, [Painted], and [Motor].

March 1st, 2002
    Huge site-update! Spent the day scanning photo's that I FINALLY got around to developing. You can find them sorted in the image gallery.

    Confirmed my order of the Targa RS seats. I will be recieving them in roughly two weeks.

All content Copyright 2001, mustang@kveder.net