Original Parts with an Original Fit!

Posts tagged 1966 Mustang

Cowl Reinstallation Tips for 1965 – 1968 Mustang

Nearly all 1965-1968 Classic Mustangs and Cougars should have their cowl vent panel removed.  This area harbors hidden rust, ugly scaly paint overspray, and water leaks.  If not repaired properly, rust will continue to eat away at the cowl panel and then the firewall.  You’re better off taking care of the cowl panel before this nightmare happens.

Upon removing the cowl panel, clean, repair, repaint and re-install it.  Here are some tips for how to re-install the cowl panel.

  1. Align the cowl panel.  Make sure when re-installing, that the position of the cowl panel is correct.  It should line up evenly with the rear edge of the hood.  It should also line up evenly with the front fenders. Temporarily install the hood and fenders to get the positioning correct.  Self-tapping screws work really well for temporarily installing body replacement panels.  When the cowl position is correct, attach the cowl with a few self-tapping sheet metal screws.  This will temporarily hold the cowl in proper position.  Remove the hood and fenders so that you have access to the cowl.
  2. Weld the cowl panel.  Beginning from the center of the cowl panel and working outward, make a plug weld every 2-3 inches.  A plug weld is a weld that fills a hole in the top piece and attaches to the bottom piece.  This type of weld is about 1/4″ size.  Complete the plug welds until you have welded the entire panel.
  3. Grind the welds.  Using an air or electric grinder, grind the excess welds so that they are flush with the cowl panel.
  4. Seal and fill the welds.  Using a quality seam sealer or body filler, fill any grinder marks or unwelded holes.  Once the sealer or filler has cured, sand the area smooth.

You are now ready to paint the cowl area and permanently reattach the hood and fenders.

Remove your 1965 – 1968 Mustang Cowl Panel?

Exterior Cowl Panel

Exterior cowl panel once removed

Many restoration shops don’t take the time to remove the exterior cowl panel. Should you insist this be part of your Mustang’s restoration? Here are some things to consider when restoring your Mustang.

1. Hidden Rust. Rust forms around the heat and air intake, then spreads to the door post, cowl side panel and firewall. This rust remains hidden unless the cowl panel is removed. Once the panel has been removed, the area can properly be inspected.

2. Leaks. Rust holes cause water leakage from under the dash. If the cowl panel has not been removed and restored, rust can go unnoticed until bigger problems surface. If your cowl does not leak, rust still might be forming inside. You would still need to examine the area by removing the cover.

3. Proper Inspection. Inspecting the cowl from under the dash is not adequate. To completely see all of the areas, the cowl panel must be removed. It is a lot of work to remove it, but will be worth it to inspect this area now and properly restore and seal this area to protect the longevity of your Mustang.

4. Concours Restoration. Once the cowl has been removed and restored, the cowl area can be painted. Mustangs that have had this area painted look much nicer. There is no longer any scaly paint inside the cowl vent grills (a common problem with Mustangs that have not had their cowl panels removed).

This picture is from our current restoration project, a 1965 Mustang factory GT Fastback. It was thought to have a rust-free cowl since there were not any leaks. After removal of the cowl panel, however, you can see the moderate surface rust located around the air intake area. This rust is minor now, but if the cowl was not removed, this area would continue to rust.

1965 Mustang left hand cowl air intake (driver's side)

1965 Mustang left hand cowl air intake (driver’s side)

The picture below shows the cowl heater intake vent (passenger side of the Mustang).  It has moderate surface rust located near the door post. It is still solid, but given time, this rust would cause serious problems.

Right hand side of the cowl panel, heat intake vent area

Right hand side of the cowl panel, heat intake vent area

It took several hours to locate and drill all of the spot welds.  But this time is well spent as it will save many hours of grueling repairs in the future.   The cowl will now be sandblasted and epoxy primered to eliminate any possibility of future rust.

Tips for removing a cowl panel:  see our Mustang Guides, Locating Spot Welds for a Unibody Panel Replacement and Drilling Spot Welds for a Unibody Panel Replacement for removing spot welds.

Important Note: When re-installing the cowl cover, make sure the alignment is perfect. This is critical for proper hood and fender alignment. If your original cowl cover will be used, simply align all the drilled spot welds. If a replacement cowl cover is used, fenders and hood may need to be bolted on and aligned to achieve this proper cowl alignment. Without proper alignment, you can be sure to need some Tylenol, as you will be faced with many headaches!

To GT or Not to GT

How do you tell if a 1965 or 1966 Mustang was a true factory GT or just a Dealer installed imposter?

There were 2 types of Mustang GT’s:  Factory GT and dealer installed GT equipment.  What is the difference?

Factory Mustang GT’s

Factory Mustang GT’s were equipped with the following:

  • “A” or “K” code 289 4V premium fuel engine
  • Reinforced rear floor pan for the GT exhaust
  • Extra hanger bracket inside the rear frame rail for the GT exhaust
  • Factory fog lights
  • Rocker panel trim that was deleted (there weren’t any holes in the rocker panels for the trim)

Dealer GT’s

Dealers installed original GT equipment because it was readily available if a customer requested it.  Dealer GT vehicles could have been equipped with the following:

  • May or may not have an “A” code engine
  • Could have any available transmission
  • Almost never had reinforced rear floor pans
  • Never had rear frame rail exhaust hanger brackets
  • May have factory fog lights, but chances are, the underdash wiring harness would not have been changed (it would have been modified instead).
  • In most cases, would have rocker panel trim.  If it was removed, there would be evidence of filled trim holes.
  • Could have any interior that the customer requested.

How to tell a true Mustang GT from an imposter:

  1. Pull up the lower cushion of the rear seat.  All GT’s (Coupe, Convertible or Fastback) should have a reinforced rear floor pan.  This was for the heavy duty GT exhaust hangers.  The factory installed an extra sheet metal plate in the location of the rear seat belt mounting area to provide extra strength to hold the GT exhaust.  Only factory GT’s have these.  Dealer GT’s did not.
  2. Feel inside the 3/4″ hole on the side of the rear frame rails, near the rear spring hanger for an extra bracket.  Factory GT’s had these brackets for the GT exhaust.  Dealer GT’s could not manually install these brackets.

Copyright 2007:  FastbackStack, LLC

1965-1966 Mustang GT fog light switch: Measure & Drill

If you are installing a 1965 or 1966 Mustang GT reproduction fog light switch, you will need to know where to drill the hole in your dash.  Ultimately, you will make two measurements and will drill the hole above the cross section of these two measurements.

Use these steps when measuring and drilling:

  1. Using a pencil, draw a vertical line 1 1/8″ over from the door post (this will be at the lower, left hand corner of the dash).
  2. Using a straight edge, hold the straight edge at the center of the hole in the door jam where the interior light button switch is located.  Draw a horizontal line across the vertical line drawn, making a cross section.
  3. Drill your hole 1/4″ above these two crossed lines.

These measurements were taken from a 1965 Mustang Fastback factory GT and will work for a Mustang Coupe, but a Mustang Convertible with a power top may differ slightly.

Copyright 2007:  FastbackStack, LLC

De-rust Your 1964 ½ -1973 Mustang Door

Original Mustang doors have rust. This is common knowledge that 40+ year old doors are going to suffer this fate. How do you handle this? What do you do when you discover rust on your classic Mustang door? We have an economic and environmentally friendly solution to this rusty problem.  This guide will give tips on how to de-rust the bottom section of your Mustang door, as this is the main area that problem rust occurs.

Rust on the inside bottom seam is not visible to the eye, but is generally present.  This rust causes the bottom edge of the door to swell if it’s not eliminated.  No amount of sandblasting will remove rust from this area.  Thus, utilizing this environmentally friendly chemical dip is imperative to remove this hidden rust before swelling occurs.

Materials Needed

  • 4 – 5 gallons Apple Cider or Distilled White Vinegar
  • 1 54″ long piece of PVC pipe (6″ or 8″ diameter)
  • 2 end caps
  • PVC pipe cement (glue)
  • Rust inhibitor paint (such as POR 15)

The Process

This process will walk you through creating a container made from PVC pipe that holds vinegar.  The bottom section of the door is then submerged in the vinegar.

  1. Prepare the door:  Complete any patchwork, sand off paint, remove excess rust scale, and clean the inside of the door with a vacuum or compressed air.
  2. Using PVC pipe cement, glue an end cap to each end of the PVC pipe.  Allow time for them to completely dry.
  3. Cut out a section of the PVC pipe large enough to fit the door in it.  Once cut, it will resemble a trough, and look like a canoe with two blunt end caps.  PLEASE NOTE:  You can use or devise a different non-metal container that suits your needs.  I have found that cutting PVC pipe in this manner works well.
  4. Fill the trough with 2-4″ of vinegar.  TIP:  large containers of vinegar are often sold at grocery outlet stores.
  5. Submerge the door in the trough and prop it up so that it won’t tip over.
  6. Leave the door submerged in the vinegar for 7 days.  Check progress after 7 days.
  7. If rust still appears, leave it submerged for another 7 days.
  8. Remove the door from the trough of vinegar and rinse the door with water.
  9. Place the door near a heat source where it can thoroughly dry on the inside and on the outside.
  10. Using compressed air, blow any remaining moisture and water from the groove located on the inside bottom section of the door.
  11. Apply rust inhibitor paint to the inside of the door, along the seam.
  12. Your door is now ready to have the body work completed.

Copyright 2007: FastbackStack, LLC

Drilling Spot Welds for a Unibody Panel Replacement

Drilling spot welds to remove unibody panels such as your cowl, rear quarter panel, floor pans and wheel wells can be tedious, but it is a fairly straightforward process.  This guide will help you tackle spot weld drilling like a pro.  Please remember to indicate below if this guide is helpful to you!

Tools Needed

  • Sand Paper and/or Wire Brush
  • Drill
  • Pilot Drill Bit: 1/8″ diameter
  • Spot Weld Cutter: 3/8″ diameter
  • Heavy Oil
  • Hammer
  • Flat Metal Chisel

Spot Weld Drilling Process

  1. Locate the spot welds needing removal
    This is done by looking for small, round depressions located every few inches where the body panel is attached to the vehicle.  If your vehicle is severely rusted or has been painted several times, these welds can be difficult to locate.  You would then need to clean the spot weld areas with sand paper or a wire brush to locate the welds.  Please see our  Locating Spot Welds for a Unibody Panel Replacement guide for more information.
    The drill bit is pointing at the small depression/spot weld.

    The drill bit is pointing at the small depression/spot weld.

  2. Using your 1/8″ drill bit, drill a pilot hole through the center of each weld
    A pilot hole is a centering hole for the spot weld cutter.  Helpful tip:  Dip the tip of your drill bit in heavy oil prior to drilling each spot weld.  This will prolong the life of your drill bit.
    This picture shows the pilot hole being drilled.

    This picture shows the pilot hole being drilled.

  3. Once all pilot holes are drilled, use your spot weld cutter to drill a hole through each spot weld.
    Using a specialized weld cutter minimizes the damage to the panel underneath the panel being removed.  When drilling with the weld cutter, only drill deep enough to remove the desired panel.  When I drill a weld, I watch the drilling area change from clean metal to light surface rust.  This would indicate that I have just reached an area between the sheet metal panels.  At this time, there is usually a little “poof” of rust dust.  I stop at this point, since I know I have just drilled through the first panel without over-cutting the second panel.
    Here is one style of weld cutter.  This is a sheet metal bit, 3/8" size.

    Here is one style of weld cutter.  This is a sheet metal bit, 3/8″ size.

    Here is the weld cutter at work, drilling the top layer of the spot weld.

    Here is the weld cutter at work, drilling the top layer of the spot weld.

    The weld is drilled!

    The weld is drilled!

  4. After all welds have been drilled, carefully use your hammer and flat chisel to separate the panels.
    This is done by laying the flat edge of the chisel between the panels and gently hammering to loosen any bits of weld that were not cut by the drill.
  5. Now that your panel is removed, you are ready for the next process.  Please see our Patch Panel Installation – Unibody Panel Replacement Guide for further information.

You are on your way to spot weld drilling!  I have drilled over 5,000 spot welds throughout the last 15 years and I will probably drill 5,000 more in this year alone!

Copyright 2007:  FastbackStack, LLC

1965-1973 Ford Mustang Headliner Installation

Installing a new headliner into your Mustang is probably your first step when restoring your vehicle.  Use this “how-to” guide to help during this installation process.  I have installed many headliners and used to install headliners using clamps until I came across a new trick of using cut up pieces of windlace instead of clamps.  I’ve found that this way is much easier and tends to yield better results.  Installing a headliner should not be intimidating.  You can save a few hundred dollars by doing the installation yourself, while at the same time fostering the pride of completing this task all on your own.


  • Headliner
  • Sharp Scissors
  • Razor Blade or Sharp Knife
  • 3M Spray Adhesive
  • 32 Pieces of Cut Up OLD Windlace (cut into 2″ pieces)
  • New Windlace Strips


  • Bow– the metal rods that hold the headliner against the roof of the car.  Mustang Coupes generally have four bows, while Mustang Fastbacks generally have three bows.
  • Windlace – the long plastic trim cap that runs alongside the door glass seal on the body.
  • Moonskin – the texture of the headliner material.
  • Roof Rail – the part of the roof frame where the headliner bows insert into.

Installation steps:

For best results, remove the windshield, rear window and weather stripping channel in the door openings.  It is VERY difficult to tuck and secure a headliner without removing the glass (besides, it will look horrible and have wrinkles if this is attempted).

  1. Before starting, lay your new headliner flat to remove any folds or wrinkles.  It may help to lay it in the sunshine to make it more pliable.
  2. Completely remove the old headliner, while taking note of exactly where the headliner bows are placed (this information will help you when installing the new headliner).  SPECIAL NOTE – it is important to know that each bow may vary a little in length and curve.  It may help to number the bows as you remove them and assign a numerical number from front-to-rear, while laying the bows in the order that you will insert them again into your new headliner.
  3. If the old insulation pad is still intact and in good condition, you may reuse it (depending upon your degree of restoration, you may choose to reuse the pad or purchase a new one).  If the pad falls apart, find a new insulation pad and securely glue it in place by spraying both the pad and the roof with 3M Spray Adhesive.
  4. While using your metal headliner bows that you have numbered from front-to-rear, begin with the forward-most bow piece and slide the metal headliner bows into the forward most sleeve of the new headliner.  Repeat the same steps with the other numbered bows, continuing to work from front-to-rear.
  5. After all bows have been inserted and CENTERED into the headliner sleeves, trim the excess sleeve material back, exposing about two inches of both ends of all the bows.  When trimming, just trim the excess SLEEVE material…DO NOT TRIM THE MOONSKIN YET!
  6. DSC01020 DSC01022

  7. Next, begin to insert the headliner into the vehicle, starting with the rear bow.  Insert the rear bow into the holes of the roof rail.  Then insert the other bows into their corresponding holes of the roof rail.  Your headliner will be “baggy” and hanging at this point.  The bows are hanging downward.
  8. Beginning with the front bow, rotate the bow so that it is snug against the ceiling of the vehicle.  Repeat this step, working from front-to-rear, until all bows are snug against the ceiling of the vehicle and are no longer “baggy”.  The bows are now upright and in the correct position.
  9. Working with the rear bow, hook the center of the bow with the two springs that connect to the rear window opening (you probably noticed these two springs when you removed your old headliner).  SPECIAL NOTE – If the two springs are in poor condition, find a suitable replacement (I have actually used spring steel wire and cut and bent it to fit as a replacement).DSC01028
  10. Now it is time to begin to stretch your headliner.  This is where the old cut up pieces of windlace comes in handy!  Starting in the center of the front windshield opening, pull the headliner material gently through the windshield opening, holding it on the roof, and secure it with a few pieces of windlace.  This is done by pushing a piece of windlace (using the channeled groove) onto the sheet metal edge of the window opening.  This will hold the headliner securely to the sheet metal.  Repeat this step at the rear window opening, again using windlace to secure the headliner to the sheet metal.  Best results are achieved when using approximately eight pieces of evenly spaced windlace at both the front and rear windshield areas.

  11. Next, continue to stretch and secure your headliner to both door window openings.  Again, use approximately eight windlace pieces per side.  Thus, you have now used 32 pieces of windlace.  SPECIAL NOTE – for a Mustang Coupe, the rear pillar has a metal tack strip that holds the headliner in place.  You’ll achieve better results if you keep stretching and re-securing the rear pillar portion of the headliner.  This needs to be done carefully, as the headliner may begin to tear.  I have found it helpful to cut a piece of window screen, spray it with adhesive and stick it to the back of the headliner where the tack strip will puncture the window screen.  This aids in preventing any serious rips in the headliner.
  12. Do a visual check of your headliner to locate loose or wrinkled areas.  If these areas are present, continue to work your way around the vehicle, removing windlace pieces and gently pulling the headliner and re-securing the windlace pieces.  The headliner should be wrinkle-free, but not too tight.
  13. The headliner is now ready for adhesive.  Remove 3 or 4 pieces of windlace from one area (I usually begin with the windshield area opening).  Spray adhesive on the headliner backing and on the metal window opening edge.  DO NOT ATTACH THESE TOGETHER YET!  Allow a few minutes for the adhesive to dry before re-securing the headliner to the metal window opening edge.  This is the recommended method of the spray adhesive (see the adhesive can for further instructions).  Once the adhesive is ready, re-secure the headliner to the metal window opening edge.  Repeat this step until all edges are glued.
  14. Now the headliner is ready to trim.  DO NOT REMOVE THE WINDLACE PIECES YET.  Using a sharp razor blade, carefully cut the excess headliner from the front and rear window openings.  Leave about 3/4″ of headliner material so the rubber window seals will cover them when later installed (REMEMBER, DO NOT REMOVE THE CUT WINDLACE PIECES FROM THE FRONT AND REAR WINDOW OPENINGS UNTIL THE GLASS IS TO BE INSTALLED).
  15. For the side window openings, have your brand new windlace strips ready.  Remove one windlace piece at a time, while pressing your NEW windlace strip in place.  Doing it this way will prevent any headliner movement.  Do this to both window openings, installing both NEW strips of windlace.
  16. Now the sides of the headliner are ready to be trimmed.  Simply run a razor blade along the outside edge of the new windlace strip.  Do not leave any extra headliner material hanging on the outside edge of the windlace strip (installing the weatherstrip channel will hide the outside edge of the windlace).
  17. The headliner is almost complete.  Now, you’ll need to finish the inside windshield pillars.  Locate the screw hole for the trim piece that covers the seam and cut the headliner so that the trim piece will hide the edge of the headliner material.  This may require some adhesive.  Repeat this step with the rear window opening (that is, if are installing a Fastback Headliner).  SPECIAL NOTE – For a Mustang Coupe (referring back to STEP #10), re-stretch the area if necessary.  The rear pillar of a Coupe is the most challenging area to achieve wrinkle-free results. 

Congratulations! Your headliner installation is complete.

We hope these steps have been helpful, especially using the tricks with the cut up pieces of windlace.  If you are an experienced headliner installer, perhaps this guide offered you some new tricks to try during your next headliner installation.

Copyright 2007:  FastbackStack, LLC

1965-1970 Mustang V8 Conversion

Do you want more power from your Classic Mustang?  Many are choosing to convert their 6 cylinder engine and suspension to a V-8 engine and suspension to enhance performance.  But what kind of donor car will you need to find that will yield the best parts for your conversion?  This guide will give some recommendations of what to look for in searching for your donor car.

1965-1966 V8 Conversion Ideal Donor Cars

  • 1970-1977 Maverick or Mercury Bobcat with a V8 engine

1970 – 1977 Mavericks and Bobcats have an excellent front disc brake setup along with the V8 engine and transmission needed to perform the conversion.  The rear end housing on these vehicles will fit right in a 1965 or 1966 Mustang.  Donor cars with 6 cylinder engines still have the same suspension and rear end as a V8 car does.  Ideally, however, you will want to find a donor car with a V8, since you will have the proper parts for both the V8 engine and the transmission.

Your 6 cylinder Mustang transmission cross-member is the same as a V8 cross-member, thus you will not need to replace it.

If you would like additional information on converting your 1965-1966 Mustang to power disc brakes, please see our 1965-1966 Mustang Power Disc Brake Conversion guide.

1967-1970 V8 Conversion Ideal Donor Cars

  • 1975-1979 Ford Granada or Mercury Monarch with a V8 engine
  • 1970-1977 Maverick or Mercury Bobcat with a V8 engine.

1975-1979 Granadas and Monarchs have an excellent front disc brake setup along with the V8 engine and transmission needed to perform the conversion.  The rear end housing on these vehicles will fit right into a 1967, 1968, 1969 or 1970 Mustang.

1970-1977 Mavericks and Bobcats will also work, but the rear end housing is a little narrower than the 1975-1979 Granadas and Monarchs.

Donor cars with 6 cylinder engines still have the same suspension and rear end as a V8 car does.  Ideally, however, you will want to find a donor car with a V8, since you will have the proper parts for both the V8 engine and the transmission.

Your 6 cylinder Mustang transmission cross-member is the same as a V8 cross-member, thus you will not need to replace it.

How to find Donor Cars

Search local newspaper car ads, internet websites, auction websites (eBay!) and automotive salvage yards or wrecking yards.  I happen to find a lot of my donor cars by simply keeping my eyes open when driving around.  I have found some donor cars in alleys, alongside garages and in back yards!  Then, I simply ask the owner if he/she is willing to sell the car.

These donor cars are often inexpensive and a good value, given the fact that their parts can be used on your Classic Mustang V-8 conversion.  Good luck hunting for your donor car!

Copyright 2007:  FastbackStack, LLC

1965-1966 Shelby Mustang 9 Inch Rear End Housing

1965 and 1966 Shelby Mustang style 9″ rear end housings are very difficult to locate, but not impossible to duplicate.  With a little work, you will be able to duplicate this Shelby rear end housing, while saving a lot of money.  This guide will provide the basic steps and necessary parts to be able to complete this process.  In the end, you will be using a Ford Galaxie 9″ rear end housing center section and 1965 or 1966 Mustang 6 cylinder rear end housing axle tubes to duplicate a Shelby rear end.

Please note:  Other Ford 9″ rear end housings may have the same styling as 1963 and 1965 Ford Galaxies.  If so, you may want to try to use one of these if a Ford Galaxie is not available.

Parts Needed for a 1965 Shelby Mustang Style Rear End Housing

  • 9″ rear end housing from a 1963 Ford Galaxie or any 9″ rear end housing that is flat on one side, rather than completely rounded with a small drain plug
  • 6 cylinder rear end housing from a 1965 or 1966 Mustang

The shape of the center section on a 9″ rear end housing on a 1965 Shelby and “K” Code Mustang is flat on one side, rather than completely rounded.  This is why you will need a 9″ rear end housing with this characteristic.  The rear end housing on a 1965 Shelby used a smaller drain plug than the one found on a 1966 Mustang Shelby.

Parts Needed for a 1966 Shelby Mustang Style Rear End Housing

  • 9″ Rear End Housing from a 1965 Ford Galaxie, or any 9″ rear end housing that is flat on one side, rather than completely rounded, with a large, flat, hexagon shaped drain plug
  • 6 cylinder rear end housing from a 1965 or 1966 Mustang

The shape of the center section on a 9″ rear end housing on a 1966 Shelby and “K” Code Mustang is flat on one side, rather than completely rounded.  This is why you will need a 9″ rear end housing with this characteristic.  The rear end housing on a 1966 Shelby and “K” Code Mustang used a large, flat, hexagon shaped (6 sided) drain plug, approximately 1 1/2″ in diameter.

How to make a 1965 or 1966 Shelby Mustang 9 inch Rear End

    1. Remove the axle tubes from the Ford Galaxie (donor car) rear end housing.
      Cut the Galaxie axle tubes flush with the weld at the edge of the center section of the housing, being careful to not damage the weld of the remaining tube in the center section.  There will still be about 2″ of tube remaining in the center section (the remaining tubes will be needed to guide and hold the 6 cylinder Mustang tubes in place, as discussed in Step 3).  Label the center section “Driver” and “Passenger” (the “Driver” axle tube is shorter and the “Passenger” axle tube is longer).
    2. Remove the axle tubes from the 1965 or 1966 Mustang 6 cylinder rear end housing.
      Cut the Mustang axle tubes flush with the edges of the cast iron center section on the Mustang 6 cylinder rear end.  Deburr the freshly cut edges (grind the edges smooth) on the axle tubes for ease of fitting.
      Please note:  when these tubes are reinstalled, they will need further trimming to achieve proper length and center section offset (this is explained in Step 4).
    3. Insert the 6 cylinder Mustang axle tubes into the Galaxie center section.
      Slide the 6 cylinder Mustang tubes into the remainder of the Galaxie tubes.  Push the tubes inward until the proper rear end housing width is achieved.  Remember to insert the tubes according to the “Driver” or “Passenger” label on the center section.   Once the tubes are  inserted to the proper overall width, use chalk to mark them at the center section weld.  Once chalk marked, remove the tubes.
    4. Trim the Mustang axle tubes to the appropriate length.
      Measure the Galaxie center section from the location that the Galaxie axle tubes were cut to the inside end of the original Galaxie axle tube.  This measurement should be about 2″.  Using this measurement, add this amount to the chalk mark on the Mustang axle tube.  Now, cut the tube even at this newly measured point.  Repeat this process with the other axle tube.
      Please note:  the inside end of the Mustang axle tube should be even with the inside end of the remainder of the Galaxie axle tube.
    5. Reassemble the rear end.
      Using a flat level surface, set the Galaxie center section down and firmly brace it.  Insert the Mustang axle tubes to the proper width, being certain that all of the components are braced so that they will not move.  Ensure that the components are absolutely straight.  Tack weld the Mustang axle tubes in place.  Double check that all tubes are straight before further welding.
    6. Weld the Mustang axle tubes to the Galaxie center housing.
      If you are an experienced welder/fabricator and know that you can weld the tubes straight and securely, attempt to do so.  Otherwise, it is highly recommended that you take the components to an experienced welder/fabricator to perform this task.

Mustang Shelby and “K” Code drivetrain components are one of the most difficult to find.  Here is a way to duplicate your own drivetrain component.

Copyright 2007:  FastbackStack, LLC

1965-1966 Mustang Power Disc Brake Conversion

Convert your standard drum brake Mustang to power disc brakes the economical way.  Ford Granadas, Mavericks, Mercury Bobcats and Monarchs all have identical spindles and only have minor brake booster mounting differences.  These cars make excellent donors for power disc brakes on your 1965 or 1966 Mustang.

Tools & Materials Needed

  • Assortment of Open-End Wrenches and Sockets
  • Tubing Wrenches and Bender
  • Air Grinder

PLEASE NOTE:  This brake conversion is NOT compatible with 6 cylinder steering.  If you have 6 cylinder steering, you will need to change your pitman arm and convert to V8 manual steering.

Helpful Tips

  • When removing brake lines from a donor car, MARK EACH LINE, so that you will be able to remember which lines go to which port on the proportioning valve.
  • Most part stores carry assorted sizes of pre-made brake lines with barrel nuts intact.  This will be helpful when re-routing your brake lines.

How to Install Disc Brakes Utilizing the Power Booster

  1. Find a suitable donor car.  Any one of these will work:  1975-1979 Ford Granada, 1970-1977 Maverick, 1970-1977 Mercury Bobcat or 1975-1979 Monarch.
  2. Remove spindles and outer tie rod ends from the donor car.
  3. Remove the proportioning valve, taking time to label which brake line goes to which wheel.
  4. Remove the brake booster and master cylinder.
  5. If the donor car was drivable and the brakes were in good condition, the installation is ready to begin.  If the donor car was not operable, go to your local parts store and purchase new loaded calipers and rotors.  You should also purchase a new master cylinder, brake booster and adjustable rod (sometimes, the brake boosters are fine, but the rod extending from the booster to the brake pedal is 3/4 inch too short.  In this case, you will just need to purchase the adjustable rod and not the brake booster).  Once the new parts are obtained from the parts store, installation is ready to begin.
  6. Install disc brake spindles.  These will fit directly in place of the Mustang drum brake spindle without any modification.
  7. Install the outer tie rod ends into the existing sleeve.  I recommend cutting 1/4 to 1/2 inch off the threaded end of the outer tie rod ends to ensure proper adjustment clearance.
  8. Install the brake booster to the firewall.  This will require some modification.  You will need to enlarge the hole upward by 1/2 inch, so that the brake booster will clear the steering column.  Additionally, you will need to mark and drill holes in the firewall for the booster mounting studs.  Next, lengthen the rod extending from the booster to the brake pedal by 3/4 inch.  This can be done with using the adjustable rod that you have purchased.
  9. Install the proportioning valve.  After marking and removing the existing brake lines from the drum brake proportioning valve, install the disc brake proportioning valve.  One extra hole located under the existing mounting hole will need to be drilled to install the disc brake proportioning valve.
  10. Next, insert the proper lines to the proper ports (you should have marked the brake lines when removing them and now can insert into the proper ports).  At this point, you may need to re-route and lengthen a few of these brake lines.  On your Mustang, the brake line coming across the firewall from the passenger side wheel is not long enough to reach the correct port.  You will need to get some fittings and a short section of brake line to hook it up.  The brake line coming from the rear end can be bent by hand so that it lines up with the correct port.  The driver side wheel brake line will need to be bent as well to line up with the correct port.  The two master cylinder brake lines should be very close, with only slight bending modifications necessary.
  11. Now it is time to connect your front wheel brake lines to the body.  If you are using the original Mustang brake lines, you will need to extend the brake lines forward along the frame rail, since the donor car’s caliper brake hose is located on the front inside portion of the wheel (and not the rear portion of the wheel).  Be sure to have adequate slack in the brake hose and anchor the brake line to the frame rail securely.
  12. Next, fill and bleed your brake system.

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