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Discussion Starter #1
Hello AFM,

My dad passed away in 2015 and of course I inherited the 1966 Mustang we had been working on off and on over the last 8 years. I'd like to get the car up and running again so that I can figure out what to do with it (I don't think it's financially reasonable to finish the restoration.)

The car had been sitting in the garage for about 1.5 years now, it used to be driven every Sunday & we had done most of the resto save the paint and body work. He told me at that point that he had backed it out of the garage and was cleaning it up while it was warming up, and then started to run rough, stumble, and stall, and refused to restart, but that it would fire up and then die with a shot of ether. So it was pushed back up the drive into the garage & then my dad got sick & couldn't fix it.

The car itself is a 1966 Sprint 200 coupe, 3 speed, with 63000 miles and all original except for some underhood items and a cd player.

I'd like to get it running again, at least, to figure out what to do with it. It has no AC, no power anything, so it's impractical here in 100+ degree summers in TX even with the vent windows.

I had my shop foreman (a retired 20+ year Ford serior master tech) rebuild the carb back in 2009, while doing underhood repairs (all new wiring, etc.) and the car ran great ever since, so I think either bad gas or something in the tank fouled up the carb, causing Dad's issue, so I'm planning on replacing the carb (Autolite 1100/Load-O-Matic), fuel lines, and fuel tank, all of which are 1966 originals (the tank has started to leak at the junction with the filler neck.)

It's still got the breaker point Load-O-Matic, we replaced the condenser/points/rotor/cap/wires back in 2009 with a NOS Motorcraft tune-up kit, and set the timing with a vacuum gauge & timing light.

So far my thoughts are:
- Replace carb (when it was rebuilt last time it was noted the throttle-shaft bushings were worn out and leaking.)
- Replace fuel tank, filter and lines

What else do I need to check for / assume is going to fail before I can get the car back on the road? It ran great prior to its unintended storage; we had just replaced the cylinder head back around 2013 due to the usual #1 exhaust manifold bolt seizure and resultant exhaust leak.

Tires are holding air, and do not seem to be dry rotted or cracked. Brakes work very well, but e-brake is not holding. (Original single master cyl.) Am I going to need to replace/file and gap the points or are they likely to have survived the "hibernation?"

The battery was hooked up to a Battery Tender, and seems to be okay, but I haven't attempted to test it yet. All of the cables, the hold-down tray, etc. have already been replaced with new parts.

If I wanted to restore the car, it would need a left rear quarter panel, a clutch job, brake upgrades, AC installation, paint, a bit of surface rust removal, etc. so I'm not sure it would be financially practical (we paid $3000 for the car in 2004 and have about $3000 into fixing it up since then.) Dad had been wanting to sell the car and get a V8 coupe, so it wasn't a family heirloom or such. I think it would probably cost another $6k+ to finish restoring, mainly due to the paint and body work. I could always leave it original as it is now, I suppose, and just fix it mechanically. (It's got the original Arcadian Blue paint.) It could then hang out with my 2003 Mach I in my garage.

Thoughts and suggestions appreciated on what needs to be done / checked to get the Mustang back on the road, and any other thoughts welcomed. I'm attaching a couple of pictures; it does have the center console, but Dad took it out when putting the carpet in and he broke some kind of mount at the front of the console, so currently it's in a box waiting to be fixed so it can get put back in the car.

Thanks. AB
 

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First, I'm sorry about your father. It must have been tough, but I'm glad that the car has not been forgotten as so often happens. As far as the engine troubles go the very first thing I would check is if you have any vaccum leaks. They can screw up the car to no end and if they are bad enough it could keep it from running. Replacing the carb is another good route, although rebuilding isn't very tough with the 1100's. Make sure that it is the correct carb for your car! I just went through this on my 68. You need to have a SCV with that distributor, I'll attach a picture of an SCV equipped carb. You'll see the image, but just to clarify the SCV is the little wheel shaped thing with holes in it. The slipping e brake could be due to it simply being out of adjustment after so long. See if you can tighten it up at all, and that may help. There should be a bracket under the car that the cable runs through. There is a stud that can be tightened or loosened to adjust the tension. Personally I would hang onto the car and put paint and AC and other things like that off until you have money and time, but we're all in a different place, so it really boils down to how much you would like to keep the car. Just my 2 cents, I'm sure others older and wiser than I will come along and correct me or be more helpful, but until then good luck!
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Thanks for your insight! I bought my Mach I just so I could go to MCA & NTMC car shows as something to help my dad get through the boredom of retirement, but his health was already failing and we never got to go show off our rides. It's still not something I enjoy thinking about, which is why it's taken this long to even consider posting about the car and getting it running again.

It's got the correct SCV carb & dizzy on it (original Ford); the carb has already been gone through once but the throttle shaft bushings are worn. With that being the case, I suspect it makes more sense to replace it. I don't think the 2+ year old gas did it any favors, either. When I get it it up on the lift in the shop I'll check the e-brake cable. The handle pulls out freely and appears to ratchet correctly but will not hold the car on even a level surface. It may be possible that the rear shoes have frozen from sitting as well.

I thought about just getting it mechanically reliable, adding dual brake master, instaling a Pertronix & adding a Vintage Air AC unit onboard, but even that much is going to cost $2.5k+ and I'm not sure if the car, being a six-cylinder with no other power options, is worth the expense.
 

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If the brakes are still working well than the e brake is a separate issue, most likely in that cable. He other thing that can happen is there is a small bracket on the firewall that holds the cable in place. Those can rust out and break off. (Mine did). It never does hurt to rebuild the drum brakes, it's not that hard to do and it doesn't hurt to have new equipment in them. The old gas definatly does not help so fresh gas could make a huge difference.
To save a bit of money you could skip the pertronix. They do have some reliability issues, and you're not going to be racing a 200 so really the only benefit is maintenance. I do own a pertronix and it is nice not to have to adjust points, but just a thought to help you save money.
Not sure how much money you're looking at putting into the car (I gather it's not much though) you might want to consider doing a front disc conversion as long as you're moving to a dual master cylinder. Again someone may correct me on this, but a 66 with a 200 is probably worth about 10,000 (in pretty decent shape). That price point depends on A LOT of variables, but your budget to get it fully or mostly restored is probably going to be at least 6,000 likely more. Like most cars you'll almost never be able to profit from selling after restoring, so it's really depends on how badly you would like to keep the car. As I said last time we're all in different places so I won't make any assumptions about your finances or ability to store the car or parts. Continue to post with results as you do some work. Good luck!
 

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Discussion Starter #5
It's a very straight car and mostly rust-free with the exception of the left quarter and some spots in the front rockers. Floors and trunk are rust-free. All of the gaps are even and the doors, hood and trunk close correctly. The money is not an issue, but I don't want to spend $10k if it would be better just to sell it and buy a V8 coupe that already has power options, ac, and 5 lug axles. Car has going in its favor that it's a 63k mile survivor with even the original keys and such but not sure if that really helps value any on this car. The car ran fine with the points. (Dad told me that even after sitting for 2-3 months it would fire up straight away with the first attempt!) Unfortunately, while he was handy with a feeler gauge and a dwell meter, I never really learned how to deal with the points adjusting and replacement myself since he already knew how to do all of that.

When it cools off in a couple months I'll push it into the shop & get her up in the air and see if I can get a better look at what's rusted/leaking/broken. It'll never be a show queen but that's not an issue since my Mach's not perfect either :wink:
 

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Discussion Starter #6
More pictures including what it looked like when we first got it (first 2 pics)
 

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Okay well I hope I was able to help you a little bit. If you'd like to stick with the same car V8 conversions are pretty common so that is an option for you. If you'd rather buy a new V8 car your best option is to get the car driving again and then sell it as is. Not sure if you're looking for power, but if you aren't id encourage you to stick with the six. They may have been the most common produced, but so many have been converted now that in my personal experience my 68 with an I6 turns more heads than the V8 cars do simply because it's something different. Your car is a strong candidate for restoration, but being an original survivor definatly helps it's selling appeal as well if you choose to go that route.
 
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