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Old 07-05-2014, 02:27 AM   #1
scottlauffer
 
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Vehicle: 1965 Ford Mustang
Location: Michigan
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Default Keeping it original or upgrading for safety and reliability

Hey folks,

We have inherited a 1965 small block that had been impecably maintained until about 15 years ago. At that point it was stored in a barn and has degraded rather quickly. When we were appointed as receiver, it was not running, had not been driven in approximately 14 years, and the interior was eaten up by field mice and who knows what else. I originally planned to keep it as original as possible, but the more thought I've put into it, I want to make it safe for my little boys to ride in, and make it more reliable. Is there any big disadvantage for going for max safety and reliability? I don't plan on entering it in any Concours shows or such, but possibly a local show. Any commentary, suggestions,, or comments are welcome. Thanks for your time.
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Old 07-05-2014, 06:12 AM   #2
woodvette
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if you plan on keeping it long term or even forever, do whatever you want. if you are going to sell it at some point soon, i would keep it mostly original. maybe do some basic upgrades like front disc brakes for safety. i feel that if you do modify it and try to sell it, others may not like your choices or style plus the added costs won't be recouped. i am doing mine as a resto mod b/c i have no intentions of ever selling it.
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Old 07-05-2014, 10:05 AM   #3
69mach1377
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If it is somehow rare or very desirable and worth a lot, keep it original. Otherwise, make it yours and do what you feel is required.
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Old 07-05-2014, 02:32 PM   #4
musnicki
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If you're going to drive it more than once a month then go for safety. If it's something rare, like previously stated, or if you plan on putting it behind glass, in a museum and trailering it to car shows....then go for originality.

Post pictures and welcome.

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Old 07-05-2014, 06:03 PM   #5
barnett468
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hello;

there is very little you can do to increase safety other than install disc brakes, improve suspension, install wider tires so they skid less when braking, front seat shoulder harness and gas tank fire barrier.

with all this stuff, if you hit something hard enough it is irrelevant. you can still walk away from a crash in a newer car with air bags, crush zones etc.. that you could not survive in your car.

this biggest safety option is cautious driving.


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"It's 50 years old, if you want more safety, buy a new car."
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Old 07-06-2014, 07:04 AM   #6
MonsterBilly
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You should just get something safer if it is a concern. Like a 707 hp Hellcat Challenger.

Ford made a ton of these cars. Do with it what you will. Enjoy it and drive it.
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Old 07-06-2014, 10:08 PM   #7
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Thanks for all the advice. It is a car that I don't intend to make a daily driver, but we definitely want to enjoy it for family drives. That is the cause for my question of making it a little safer and reliable. I don't want to have to worry about stopping in time or stalling out 20 miles from home.
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Old 07-06-2014, 10:29 PM   #8
barnett468
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Quote:
Originally Posted by scottlauffer View Post
Thanks for all the advice. It is a car that I don't intend to make a daily driver, but we definitely want to enjoy it for family drives. That is the cause for my question of making it a little safer and reliable. I don't want to have to worry about stopping in time or stalling out 20 miles from home.
hello

ok, the stock drums work just about as well as stock disc providing you do not get the drums wet. the off the shelf material from drum goes sucks. you can get them relined at porterfield with good material.

if you want discs just buy a kit and put in hawk hp plus pads or similar.

now, as i mentioned, you need wider tires and also a lower profile and large diameter will help.

stock mustang suspension sucks because it is horrendously soft.

buy stiffer front and rear springs and decent shocks like kyb gray or for a firmer ride get the white ones.

i might use around 400 to 450 lb front springs in your case. the 620 are good for a full load bit are a bit stiff.

use around 145 lb in the rear.

put in a 1" front sway bar while you are at it.

install urethane bushings in the front strut rods.

install a shelby style shock tower brace and monte carlo bar.

NONE of this stuff is excessive or overkill for your app.

the stiffer suspension will improve braking and car stability while braking.

i would also consider sub frame connectors but they are more helpful on a convertible.

Last edited by barnett468; 07-06-2014 at 10:35 PM.
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Old 07-07-2014, 11:46 AM   #9
wsovonick
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Another thing I would suggest about the brakes, would be to upgrade to a dual bowl M/C, if it hasn't been done already. Kits are available, and it's not too difficult to do. As barnet468 suggested, I added a 1" sway bar last year (while upgrading to front disks) and handling has improved. My 65 is strictly for weekend fun and I spend a good part of my weekends driving it during the summer, sometimes in the evening. Another thing I did was to add halogen headlights and LED tail/brake lights. The better you can see and be seen adds to your safety. Lighting upgrades are simple and well worth the expense. The attached pics are of the brake lights on with regular 1157 bulbs and the LED upgrade kit I went with. Big improvement.
Attached Images
File Type: jpg Regular Brake Lights.jpg (37.8 KB, 1 views)
File Type: jpg LED Brake Lights.jpg (39.7 KB, 1 views)

Last edited by wsovonick; 07-07-2014 at 12:07 PM.
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Old 07-07-2014, 11:46 AM
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