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Discussion Starter #1
Hi guys, I need some advice.

I'm in the market for buying a '66 289 V8 and using it as a daily driver.
I'm also aiming to keep it running a few years and sell it in the end when I move back to the UK.

I live in Carlsbad, CA and would be driving max 15 miles a day (5.5 to work, 5.5 back, added extra as a minor detour incase I go surfing after work).
I'm 20, been driving for 3 years in the UK, recently moved out here and I'm an eager learner and keen to get stuck into looking after a mustang (I understand they take a bit of maintenance).
I have quite a few questions to ask so bare with me:

Would a '66 v8 be do-able as a daily driver? I've done the maths and worked out fuel cost isn't an issue for me so... thoughts?
How much maintenance (bearing in mind I'm trying to find a solid machine, not a "well kept" one on craigslist) do these actually take?
How much time would I be putting into keeping the thing running per week?
Is there anything wrong with using standard fuel or is that going to do more harm than good?
When buying, what do I need to look for so I don't get ****ed over?
My budget is around $13000... what other costs (excluding fuel) would I end up forking over in the time I'd be driving it?
What tools/equipment/fluids would I need to maintain the car myself?
What other advice would you give a newbie mustang owner?

And lastly, do you think its worth the investment?
I plan to be a classic mustang guy (always loved them, just only recently had the money/accessibility to get my hands on one)

All and any advice appreciated,
Thanks in advance!
 

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OF COURSE they can be daily drivers. It comes down to are you comfortable paying the cost of petrol for your v8? You answered that one.
for $13,000 you can purchase a fairly well restored mustang.

Please use premium fuel. Stay away from 89


The drive ability of classic, vintage, and antique cars comes down to:

1) Disc brakes vs Drum Brakes?
2) Power Steering, power brakes, power clutch?
3) AC?
4)Aggressive cams?
5)Does it have all the mirrors to help you out while driving?

answering these questions based on your personality and what you can live without or can not will determine if that car will be a good daily.

as for me, I removed my radio (loud exhaust with cams that's why) I have no power steering
and so on. I can live without these things.
 

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imo it can be a good fun thing. but check over the car or have it checked by a old mechanic before you buy.
 

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Don't forget A/C and P/S is all nice but when you are working under the hood, they take up alot of room. You should get a sweet car for $13,000 I think. Id stay with the 289 V8. They do cost more but are the better engine, in my opinion.


Ken :smile:
 

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For 13k you can get a pretty good mustang and yes they can be a daily diver. That being said, it is important to remember that these cars do not have all the safety stuff modern cars do. No crumple zones, airbags etc. I am not trying to scare you off, and I drive mine as a daily driver when I am in town, but it is good to keep in mind to drive a little more cautiously.

I suspect that when you get your car you will spend quite a bit of time tweaking her the way you want. Think about things like a duel master cylinder and disc brakes (front), updated lights for increased visibility, AC and power brakes and steering. Specifically regarding the power brakes, I think it best to make sure that you get what you want initially as conversions can be tight (especially with a manual transmission).

Once you get her the way you like maintenance is not that bad. I spend a couple of hours a week messing with this and that on my car. I would only use higher octane gas and avoid ethanol if possible. Change your oil on a regular basis (I do it every 3000 miles) and add a zinc additive every time.

I hope you get a car you love and find a way to strap your surfboard on top.
 

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Ollie,

Welcome to AFM.

You are very much over emphasizing maintenance on an older Mustang. If everything is in good order they don't require much of anything and what little is required is dirt simple. We aren't talking Ferrari or Rolls-Royce here - its a Ford. Everything on one is mechanically very simple with no special tools or knowledge needed other than a basic knowledge of auto mechanics. When I was your age I drove these cars with hardly any tools and never had any problems. A simple set of US (inch sized) spanners and a couple of screwdrivers is about it. (Unlike tools in the UK, when a US spanner says 1" the open dimension between the jaws is actually an 1".) As with any make, if you buy a dog it will be a continual headache to drive. That isn't because its a Mustang but because its a neglected car that needs a lots of work.

The 289s came in regular fuel and premium fuel versions with the former being around 9.3:1 compression ratio for the 2V engines and closer to 9.8:1 for the 4V 'premium fuel' 289s. If you get one with a factory stock 'regular fuel' engine there is no reason to use anything other than regular fuel. (Even the 4V engines may now have low compression pistons, as does ours, and be suited for regular.) After an engine overhaul our 2V coupe is a little higher at around 9.4:1 but I have still driven it from here to sea level on pump regular with no problems whatsoever. Never once with factory tuneups specs was there a pinging problem with regular. US pump octane varies with altitude from 85/86 up here to 89 at sea level. At our 5-6000' altitude you don't even need 85. Today's 89 regular when measured on the same scale that was used in the 1960s is 94 octane and exactly what Ford recommended for those engines.

They do lack most of the safety features of a new car but that comes with driving any old car. Keep that in mind and don't pretend you are driving some special race car. It was built and sold as a smallish family car which is what it was and still is. In CA I doubt you will even stand out driving such a car but will see several of them on the road every day. On the east coast we saw few, if any, older cars of any kind but cars rust to death in that climate so old cars aren't regularly driven there. Driving one in New Mexico doesn't draw any attention since they are common.

Relax, find a decent one and enjoy yourself. Its not as difficult as someone has been telling you. The only problem you may have is finding a good one for $13k in CA. NADA lists a base '66 coupe with an 'average retail' of $18k. Their 'low retail' of $6k will get you a basket case.
 

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You should be able to find a VERY clean Mustang in SoCal for that budget. You might check out the Pomona Swap Meet this Sunday. Probably a little bit of a hike for you (maybe a 90 minute drive each way), but it's always a good time and there's usually quite a few Mustangs for sale there.
 

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Yes it would be fine, I have a 1967 ford mustang hard top that is my daily driver at the moment. If you do get a daily driver you may want to make sure that it has power steering, and power disk brakes especially if you are going to be driving on a main highway or freeway.
Mine is not as quiet it has a lot of road nose compared to other cars I own (Toyota Camry), but i don't mind I still look cool.
I also did safety upgrades like headrest, and 3pt. seat belts.
The biggest problem I have ran into with it as a daily is snow if you ever run into snow don't even try driving it. But snow is not usually a problem in California.
 

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One more thing, check with your insurance office. My experience is that none of the regular insurance companies will cover the older cars (just the other guy's car). They will refer you to the classic car companies like Hagerty. And they do not like daily drivers and going to work. Called: limited exposure!
 

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One more thing, check with your insurance office. My experience is that none of the regular insurance companies will cover the older cars (just the other guy's car). They will refer you to the classic car companies like Hagerty. And they do not like daily drivers and going to work. Called: limited exposure!
I Actually have full equipment coverage with Geico and it works fine.
When my car was rear ended I took it to and auto body shop and they made a quote and did all the normal stuff and they would not repair it because the damage was too much (but that is no big deal).
since I like working on my car I said I would do it... And they let me i was given a clean title and $13000. It took about $6000 to repair it.
Now the car is back and fine with the same insurance for the same amount.

so they gave me plenty of money for the car, and the normal company worked out fine.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Thanks for all the advice and positive feedback!

The one thing that concerns me as quite a few of you pointed out is safety, so I reckon I'd install a 3 point seatbelt and maybe a headrest like you guys suggested (mainly just the seatbelt though) and make sure I get a car with power brakes/steering.

I Actually have full equipment coverage with Geico and it works fine.
When my car was rear ended I took it to and auto body shop and they made a quote and did all the normal stuff and they would not repair it because the damage was too much (but that is no big deal).
since I like working on my car I said I would do it... And they let me i was given a clean title and $13000. It took about $6000 to repair it.
Now the car is back and fine with the same insurance for the same amount.

so they gave me plenty of money for the car, and the normal company worked out fine.
Yeah I was looking at Geico and it seemed pretty good and they had no issues with an older car. All the other companies have problems with the miles I'd be driving (even though it's only a small amount over their limits)

Cheers guys!
 

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A reliable 66 Mustang for $13 K ??
Also it's not an easy car to drive compared to today's car.
I consider my 65 as driving fun and like a motorcycle it's also work to drive. That's what makes the car exciting.
A daily drive like my 65 will sell anytime for $25 K and is appraised at $28 K
I had no problem building it from a $3200 granny body frame plus another $20 K in receipts.
It's a daily drives that didn't cost Me $50 K plus and also won't depreciate if taken care of.
Still it's better having the Mustang as the 2nd vehicle cause a 50 year old car will always have some type of issue.
 

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I agree. I have seen $13k cars that wouldn't make it across town and back. For too many of them a 'restoration' means new paint and upholstery.

State Farm will insure anything if its road legal. Most of my cars with them are on antique coverage with limited miles but two other cars are not including a '66 Mustang. Its a higher premium but its just like any other car except it has a stated value. I could drive it to work every day if only I wasn't retired. My only Geico experience was on the receiving end when one of their cars hit me; they paid reasonably well and without hassle even though my car was 30 years old at the time. Your biggest problem is your age; under 25 and male is something that any insurance company wants big bucks to insure. I would predict that insurance will be your biggest expense.

An original '66 Mustang with power brakes would have been drum brakes. The disc brake option on a '66 had no power booster. However, I would disagree that its a difficult car to drive. I have a few social security checks under my belt and I have no problem driving our coupe in town or cross country. It has neither power steering nor power brakes but automatic, A/C and a non-original cruise control (for highway only, they are dangerous in town). When I was 20 the cruise control wasn't as important to me as it is today. With factory stock exhaust and original sized but radial tires it is neither hard to steer nor all that noisy or tiring to drive. We covered as many as 670 miles a day on the freeway between here and West Virginia where the common question was: You DROVE that car here? My reply was: Why not? That's what cars are for.
 

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So my car is worth about 15000
I am younger (under 25) and also male.
I do have a clean driving record, and my insurance is affordable
Gas here today was 2.8 and I get 20mpg. If you math gas out it would cost $2.1 a day for 15 miles. I use more gas with a 17-20 mile commute.
In the passed year there has only been 1 time that I had issues with the car, for a tranny rebuild since it had never been rebuilt.
A lot of people think it's crazy but with the right car it is completely possible.
 

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I seen thin on another thread and the car described seems reasonable and those numbers do not add up to 20k+
I also think this is a reasonable breakdown.


Typical values:

Paint $3k+ bodywork
Upholstery $1k
Glass $ 800
Chrome, trim & misc $1000
Engine/cooling system/Etc $ 3500
Trans $1000
Driveshaft/u-joints/yoke $ 300
Differential $1k
Front suspension $1k
Rear suspension $ 500
Brake system $1000


Exhaust (including headers/manifolds) $1200


HVAC $1500

(FYI...worst case scenerios)

[/QUOTE]


Also

I believe you are quoting a fastback...

A reliable 66 Mustang for $13 K ??
Also it's not an easy car to drive compared to today's car.
I consider my 65 as driving fun and like a motorcycle it's also work to drive. That's what makes the car exciting.
A daily drive like my 65 will sell anytime for $25 K and is appraised at $28 K
I had no problem building it from a $3200 granny body frame plus another $20 K in receipts.
It's a daily drives that didn't cost Me $50 K plus and also won't depreciate if taken care of.
Still it's better having the Mustang as the 2nd vehicle cause a 50 year old car will always have some type of issue.
 

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coltman I think you are a little light on your values but close. imo add 20 percent to them
 

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A relative, several years ago, bought a '66 for $600 (as punishment to their teenager who couldn't stop racing and getting speed tickets) a rare event but it can happen

I purchased mine for $6300
All it needed with rear end, purchased on for $500 (9'' inch rear)
It needs shorty headers because the exhaust it touching the clutch cable

for my preference, I will do wire tuck.
 

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coltman I think you are a little light on your values but close. imo add 20 percent to them
Those values where posted by somebody else.
But I thought the where reasonable.


Maybe I think it lower because when I bought my car I got a huge deal. It had an engine with 30000 miles on it, it also had a brand new suspension and steering components. It was reasonably rust free and basically needed interior and paint for 3k.

Deals like mine do exist though.
 

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if you are still looking for a mustang you should consider the 64-66 coupe as well as the fastback. with a coupe you will get more car for what you want to spent. I have seen a few on ebay down around the LA area. That is where I got my 65.
 

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if you are still looking for a mustang you should consider the 64-66 coupe as well as the fastback. with a coupe you will get more car for what you want to spent. I have seen a few on ebay down around the LA area. That is where I got my 65.
Fastback is much more expensive.

Although it does look better (to a point) but if it's a daily on a budget (like me). To OP, skip the fast back, they are -not-going anywhere.
 
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