How to Successfully Restore a Classic Mustang in 2020

Restoring a classic Mustang is a fun hobby for many car enthusiasts. There’s the excitement of opening it up and getting started, and the hope of how the finished product will turn out. Inevitably, most car enthusiasts realize the restoration job will be more of a challenge than anticipated. Fixing up a classic car will always take a lot of time, effort, and energy. Nonetheless, if you plan properly, you can eventually get to see your hard work pay off in a restored classic Mustang. Here are some tips you can follow for a successful classic Mustang restoration project.

Classic Mustang Engine

Examine the car

You must examine the car you’re considering restoring before deciding to work on it. You may think a classic Mustang that’s being sold cheap is worth buying, but it’s important to think about not only the cost of getting it but also the cost of fixing it up. Look at the body of the Mustang and analyze how much crash damage and rust there is. The more rust and damage you see, the more expensive it will be to fix it up. In particular, if there’s rust on the frame rails, it will be very expensive to replace it since it’s a key part of the vehicle’s structural stability and frame. You should also observe the exterior to see how much the paint has chipped away.

Certain types of paint, such as lacquer paint, are harder to strip away, thus making it more costly. If possible, take the classic Mustang you’re considering to a shop for a compression test. A compression test will give you a better idea of the car engine’s health and its maintenance over the years. If you can’t get a compression test, you can look under the hood to see if anything has been replaced with newer parts to get an idea of how healthy the car is. While every classic car restoration project is going to have some challenging work, make sure that won’t be too much work to do and won’t exceed your budget.

It’s good to have a general idea of what parts and accessories you’ll be purchasing to restore your Mustang. In addition, have a technical library before you get started. Chances are, you’re probably not going to be familiar with every part of your classic Mustang. Having a technical library of books related to your car will make things easier. It’s helpful to include manuals from the original makers of your car. An example of literature you could get is Ford Factory Shop Manuals.

Use an effective paint-stripping method

One of the first steps to restoring a classic Mustang is to remove the paint. After you’ve stripped the car’s body, you need to decide what paint removal method you’re going to use. One of the best methods you can use is mechanical paint removal, which involves soft media blasting or sanding. You want to avoid peening the metal, so make use of glass beads, plastic, or walnut shells. Other forms of media blasting you may consider are dry-blasting or baking soda. Keep in mind that this method can be a little more expensive.

Mustang Spray Painting

Reduce noise and heat

It’s helpful to install an insulating noise-reduction system. Some examples you can consider looking into are Dynamat, Hush Mat, and other similar products. A noise reduction system will reduce the road noise and keep the exhaust heat under your car. Parts of the noise-reduction system can include stick-on sound deadening and padding.

Get the mating surfaces checked

It’s commonly thought that classic Mustang automatics always leak. In actuality, there’s a way to potentially prevent the leaking. When you go to a transmission shop, have the mating surfaces checked with a straight edge and get the surfaces milled if needed. A common cause of leaking in classic Mustangs is improper sealing or poorly mated surfaces. A good way to get a clean start-up from your car is to lubricate the seal to the shaft, slip yoke, and torque converter contact surfaces.

Install automatic transmission for longevity

If you want your classic Mustang to last for a while, installing an automatic transmission will help with that. Examples of reliable automatic transmissions you could input include FMX, C4, and C6 transmissions. Always go with the best parts available whenever you rebuild an automatic. You should also replace the bearings and the bushings. With the right shift improvement kit, you can get your classic Mustang having minimal clutch and band slippage. As a result, the car will have a longer transmission life and greater efficiency.

Classic Mustang Interior

Pad the seats

Classic Mustangs originally had bucket seats, which aren’t exactly the most comfortable to sit in if you plan to travel up to hundreds of miles in it. When reupholstering the seats, be sure to put in a lot of padding and seat buns. If you go to an upholstery shop, request that your seat foam be fattened up for comfort. You can try to get in as much foam as you can without the stitch ripping. To make the vinyl installation easier, use silicone spray on the foam.

Choose a good shop

If you’re not interested in working on the car yourself, finding a shop that does quality classic Mustang restoration is key. Finding a quality shop will require that you carefully research the company you’re considering. Look online to see what reputation they have for their work through reading reviews and testimonials. Make sure you get a detailed and written estimate from each car shop you’re considering and a clear timeline of when you can expect the work to be completed. It’s helpful to keep consistent contact with the restoration shop while the job is being done, so you’re sure you and the shop are on the same page.

Restoring a classic Mustang can take a lot of hard work. It can also be very expensive if you’re not careful in picking the right car to work on. Be sure to follow these tips to help make your classic Mustang restoration a success. Revology Cars can provide you more information about classic Mustangs.

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