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My first test drive!

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by 1971BB427, Jun 19, 2013.

  1. 1971BB427
    Joined: Mar 6, 2010
    Posts: 5,684

    1971BB427
    Member
    from Oregon

    Well the Falcon is gone now. Had fun building it, and fun driving it for some time now. But all good things must end someday! I purchased a '39 Chev coupe project at a swap meet earlier this year, so the Falcon needed to go away to make space to build, and funds to build with.
    I owned a '40 Chev coupe in '68 right after hi school, and always regretted selling it. But also always liked the earlier grilles of the '37-'39 Chevys too. So when I spotted this '39 at a reasonable price, I made a deal at an even better price. The '39 and I have become well acquainted over the recent months, and it's moving along pretty quickly. Spent 3 months just replacing rotted and rusty steel. Then went on with drivetrain and suspension. Hope to be driving it by next summer, even if it's not cosmetically done.

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  2. New project and new fun, I'm sure it will turn out great like your others. This 39 has been a race car since 59 with the same owner driver, he parked it in 68 then brought it back out in 2008, same paint, suspension. FB_IMG_1574911107684.jpg
     
    Ron Funkhouser, 41 coupe and Baron like this.
  3. Baron
    Joined: Aug 13, 2004
    Posts: 3,423

    Baron
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    Congrats on the new project. What are your plans for the Chevy ?
    And Happy Thanksgiving !
     
  4. 1971BB427
    Joined: Mar 6, 2010
    Posts: 5,684

    1971BB427
    Member
    from Oregon

    My plans are a pretty much street driven car, with maybe once a year run at the drags for fun. I put together a 350 Chevy with 487x heads and all new SS valves, hardened seats, and the works. The cam is a Howards roller cam with .513" lift and around 286 duration. 109 LSA. Not sure which intake yet, as I have 3 or 4 to choose from. Rear axle is an 8.8" Ford limited slip with 3.73 gears, and trans is a 700R4 overdrive so I can take some long trips with better mileage. Steering column is a late 80's Chevy pickup tilt column, ran to a Vega box set up to steer front side.

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    Since this is a Master Deluxe and had control arm suspension I swapped in a later 50's Chevy truck front axle. Had to narrow it about 5" to get it inside the fenders. I also have done a lot of work to lower the car, as I want a gasser style build, but not one with a lot of altitude to the stance. I dropped the rear about 4.5", and the front will be slightly higher than stock, but not more than an inch or so.
    So far I've replaced the bottom 4" of the entire car. New floors, rockers, lower doors, lower 1/4 panels, tail panel, lower cowl. But amazingly the car was super solid and super straight above 4"! Right now it's still in primer, and some rattle can over the welded panels. I have painted the dashboard, and firewall, but nothing else. Need to shoot epoxy primer soon before doing the bodywork. I have the holes welded up in the firewall, and extra reinforcement added to the firewall for the Corvette master cylinder mount.

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    I've got the brakes plumbed, but not bled as I needed to remove them to paint the firewall. I am putting the lines back on this weekend and then I can bleed them.

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    This old '52 Pontiac steering wheel was in the car when I bought it, so I cleaned it up, and used some Duraglass to repair cracks. Painted it "desert sand" to match the dash and installed it on the late model column.

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    Built up a gauge panel with new gauges, and covered it in burl wood. Did the clock delete plate to match.

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    Just finished the exhaust system. Running from the fenderwell headers to a pair of electric cutouts, over the axle and out the tail panel to keep things quiet inside.

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    I still have to do all the wiring, plus setup the radiator, and figure out an electric fan or mechanical. Need to get the one piece fiberglass tilt frontend inside the shop, and see what I need to do for building a tilt mechanism, and structurally reinforce the frontend to allow me to attach a framework to the glass nose.
    Also need to do all of the interior work, and of course the exterior bodywork and paint. Plenty to keep me busy all winter and more!
     
    Lil'Alb, oldsjoe, swade41 and 3 others like this.
  5. 1971BB427
    Joined: Mar 6, 2010
    Posts: 5,684

    1971BB427
    Member
    from Oregon

    And these are the tires and wheels a chose for the '39:

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    Lil'Alb, UNCLECHET, oldsjoe and 4 others like this.
  6. Baron
    Joined: Aug 13, 2004
    Posts: 3,423

    Baron
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    Your moving right along. All the "right parts". Nice to see you able to build this one inside and not in your driveway beside your house. :)
     
  7. 1971BB427
    Joined: Mar 6, 2010
    Posts: 5,684

    1971BB427
    Member
    from Oregon

    Yes, I had plans to build a fairly large shop in the backyard, but me and the city couldn't see eye to eye, so I finally caved and dropped that idea. Instead I built a smaller one car shop, but at least it's a metal building with a good floor, and I added the garage flooring also. I can't begin to say how much I enjoy the garage floor tiles! Regardless of temperatures the flooring is never cold when I lay down under the car. If there's any drawback it's the fact things slide easily on the floor tiles. Sometimes that's good, and sometimes not so good.
    Being comfortable, dry, and fairly warm makes a huge difference!
     
    oldsjoe, Baron and swade41 like this.
  8. oldsjoe
    Joined: May 2, 2011
    Posts: 2,523

    oldsjoe
    Member

    I really like the steering wheel, in the picture it looks almost two tone. I know it's probably a shadow but the effect is cool! Joe

    Sent from my XT1710-02 using The H.A.M.B. mobile app
     
  9. 1971BB427
    Joined: Mar 6, 2010
    Posts: 5,684

    1971BB427
    Member
    from Oregon

    Yeah, I'm not that talented to do a fade paint job. It's all one color.
     
  10. 1971BB427
    Joined: Mar 6, 2010
    Posts: 5,684

    1971BB427
    Member
    from Oregon

    I got the body stripped to bare metal, shot epoxy sealer yesterday. I was pleased to not find any body filler or dents anywhere under the primer that was on the car. I didn't strip the rear fenders or the deck lid as the fenders had already been skim coated and smoothed. And the deck lid is fiberglass so brand new.
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    The wiring harness I bought is in, and connected to dash, gauges, and steering column. Soon I'll mount the taillights and hook them in. Then I can set the one piece glass frontend on and get wiring, and framework done to provide a frame for the tilt mechanism.
    Also got the rest of the sound insulation done for the interior floor and side panels.
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    Lil'Alb likes this.
  11. 1971BB427
    Joined: Mar 6, 2010
    Posts: 5,684

    1971BB427
    Member
    from Oregon

    Finally set the one piece front clip on last week, and got a big shock at how ill fitting it is! I'm guessing the clip sat somewhere unsupported, or even with crap sitting on top, so it was sunken across the cowl area. That created big issues with the hood touching the center of the cowl and the outside corners sitting almost 2" high!

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    I was so ticked off I just closed the shop and went in the house for a couple days. Then I decided I'd make it work somehow, even if it meant cutting the whole hood off it and reworking that. I started by removing the brace on the backside of the hood area, and making multiple cuts partway through the hood to relieve it, and allow it to bend.

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    Then once I finished the cuts i test fitted it again, and saw it had dropped a bit, but still way off. So I totally removed the brace and went after it with a flapper disc on my angle grinder to thin it. Using the cuts as reference I was able to judge how much thickness I removed, and not grind through. I took enough off the thickness to make the glass the same thickness as the cowl step. Did another test fit, and it had moved a great deal!

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    Still a bit high at the corners, so I'll pull it once more and remove a little more glass inside the hood corners. Once I get the corners to drop I'll use some 3M 8115 body panel adhesive to glue in box tubing on the inside and that should hold the shape.
    I'll bend up 1" OD round tube to make up a framework for the tilt mechanism and use the 3M 8115 for attaching the tube frame also. For now I'm letting it sit with some weight on the fenders to hold it and maybe let it settle a bit more.

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  12. 1971BB427
    Joined: Mar 6, 2010
    Posts: 5,684

    1971BB427
    Member
    from Oregon

    So after fighting this shitty deformed fiberglass front clip I finally threw in the towel. It's so out of whack that I ended up cutting the hood loose from the fenders in hopes I could save it. Even considered bolting the fenders to the car in regular fashion, but they wouldn't even fit the body correctly after separation.
    Then I figured I'd make the hood better by removing the sides and leaving them off, but it too was distorted, and wouldn't fit the grille properly. It was sprung, and flat on one side of the nose. Just more badly built glass.
    Then early this week a pair of very nice steel fenders showed up on Craigslist. After weeks of cussing and struggling, with no results; I jumped on real steel fenders! And they came with headlight housings too! I brought them home and immediately set to stripping the passenger side that had surface rust all over it. It wasn't pitted, and came off easily. Found one small rust hole at the bottom, and driver's side found one crack that's easily welded.
    I hung the fenders the next day, and they fit great!

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    Went over to my local Old Car Parts and asked if he had a chin piece for under the grille. He did, and after pounding out some minor dents it was perfect.
    Got the grille bolted in place today, and it fit great! Before bolting it in I made up a sheet metal plate for the chin piece just to reinforce the area. I shot it with etching primer on the back and then pop riveted it in. Gave the top side a coat of more primer so I can just paint it later.

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    One of the upper fender supports that bolts into the headlight housing was gone, so I cut up some cardboard and made a template off the other. Reversed it and bent it up from a piece of 18 ga. sheet steel. The original is a stamped sheet metal piece, so I duplicated that. Had to cut internal corners, and then weld it together after making the bends.

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    I drilled the single hole with the unibit, and then clamped the bracket under the fender and drilled the two holes that go inside the headlamp. Bolted it up under the fender, and I'll make braces that go from the frame to these later.

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    Bolted the grille in with 1/4-20 bolts, and the biggest fender washers I have for better support.

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    Then I made up another sheet metal plate for the top of the grille. This will serve several purposes. Strengthening the grille so it wont flex. Keeping the incoming air trapped so it has to go through the radiator, and wont go over the top of it. And a place to mount my front hood pins that will hold the front of the hood down.

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    Tried the hood back on and the fit was much better! It needs very little beyond some surface grinding to lower the side I built up. I also needed to take some material off the edge that contacts the grille top trim. It touched on the driver's side, but was 1/4" off on the passenger side. So I traced along the edge with a felt pen and took some off with the flapper disc.

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    You can see here where the passenger side was just a tiny bit higher.

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    A little skim coat of filler and some hand blocking, and the hood will be ready for primer.

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    Tomorrow I'll begin making the support braces to hang the fenders and grille off the frame, and tie them together behind the grille. I'm using a '32 Ford repro radiator in aluminum so the stock radiator support wont fit. I'll build something up to do the job and maybe be sleeker than the stock support too.
     
    Last edited: Feb 14, 2020
  13. Baron
    Joined: Aug 13, 2004
    Posts: 3,423

    Baron
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    Got a lot accomplished now that you have some parts that fit Val. Got a nice fit on the hood. Looks good. As I always say, "Enjoy the build".
     
    kidcampbell71 likes this.
  14. 1971BB427
    Joined: Mar 6, 2010
    Posts: 5,684

    1971BB427
    Member
    from Oregon

    Thanks Baron! The hood looks rough now because the Duraglass over the glass cloth is tough to get smooth. But it needs some material removed, and then a little filler should make it presentable.
     
    Baron likes this.
  15. 1971BB427
    Joined: Mar 6, 2010
    Posts: 5,684

    1971BB427
    Member
    from Oregon

    Fired up the heater and went to work building braces today so I could get the jackstands out from under the front fenders. I have no idea how the fenders were supported, but I've got none of those parts, so this was my plan. I made up these vertical braces to hold it up.

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    Once bolted on it felt really solid. But then I grabbed the fenders and wiggled them laterally and they moved quite a bit. There's a lot of tin hanging out there, so I made lateral braces from the frame out to existing holes in the lower fender lip. I couldn't find any info on lower braces either, but found holes on either side of the bumper bracket reliefs in the fenders. So attached to those holes, and they worked great to tighten it up.
    I grabbed my nutsert tool and installed nuts into a bunch of existing holes, which saved a lot of time, and let me use blind holes. The more I use the nutserts, the more I love them. Used up all my 5/16 nutserts, so need to order more soon!
    After that I got out the '32 Ford radiator, and built a pair of bottom brackets to hold it. The mounts were 1.5" narrower than my frame rail width, so I added 2.5" to the bottom of each frame rail with plates, and bolted them in to the frame lip. One hole was there, so only needed to add a 2nd to each side. Then a single bolt through the radiator mount, and some rubber under it to isolate it.

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    Radiator is REALLY close fitting! The brackets on the upper sides are less than 1/4" from the fenders, and that's moving it back close to the fan to get to a wider area.

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    I still have to fabricate upper mounts from some point to the two side brackets. There's also a center top plate that could be used, but I'd like to not use the two stock rods back to the firewall. If I can locate some nice chrome, or polished aluminum 3/8"rods I'd use them, but otherwise I make a bracket to tie the radiator into the grille top.
    Top hose is a gimme to find and install. Bottom is a very short 90 degree hose that isn't maybe 12" total. Might be interesting to see what i can find in a 1.75" hose that's a short 90!
    I may add an electric pusher fan also as the engine sits low in the chassis and the mechanical fan covers the bottom 3/4 of the radiator. An electric pusher on the front set towards the top can be wired into a thermostat and come on if things get a little warm.
     
    kidcampbell71 and swade41 like this.
  16. 1971BB427
    Joined: Mar 6, 2010
    Posts: 5,684

    1971BB427
    Member
    from Oregon

    I got my cross brace built and installed to tie the fenders together today. Took no time at all to build it, but a lot more time to take everything apart to sandwich it into the fenders and my other braces. It stiffened things up so much I bet I could stand on those fenders now! The U shape will give me plenty of clearance for the fan.

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    I also made up my 3/8 radiator support rods. That took way more to thread than I ever guessed! I figured it's aluminum, so couldn't be that hard? But the short threads at the radiator end were brutal to get done. A 1/4 turn at a time or the die stuck to the rod! I decided the other end's 2" of threads would be impossible at this rate, so I turned the rod down on my 1" belt sander to reduce diameter. I think the 3/8" size they call it was much larger! Even after reducing it was tough, but not nearly like before!
    After threading both ends I bent the offsets to get them widened, and drilled holes at both ends. They went in great, and the radiator is also really solid now.

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    Next I bent up some 1/8" x 1" steel flat bar and drilled two holes in it for my hidden hood pins. I drilled two pilot holes first, and laid it on my grille top plate and then opened all the holes up to 1/2". I bent up the flat bar so it contoured to the inside of the hood. Then spaced it up and put it over the hood pins so I could bond it to the hood. At this point things went a bit sideways as they sometimes do. I set up the 3M panel bond in the double caulk gun, but no matter how hard I squeezed only the gray half moved! The cream colored half wouldn't budge at all, and eventually it started bending the caulk gun. So I stopped and removed the tubes from the gun. I grabbed my band saw and cut the ends off of both tubes, and used a paint stir stick to dig it out of the tubes. I mixed it together on a pallet, and applied it to the inside of the hood where I'd pre marked it. Then sat the hood in place over my bracket and let it set up. It worked fine, and the bracket is extremely solid. I'll need to open up the holes in the bracket slightly so the bracket slides over the hood pins easier, but not much. Maybe 9/16" should do it.
    Stripped both headlights, and shot them with primer. I need to weld these holes up on the side, so didn't bolt them down yet. There's one hole per light, but both on the right side, so maybe these were off two different cars and both from the same side?

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  17. DDDenny
    Joined: Feb 6, 2015
    Posts: 13,440

    DDDenny
    Member
    from oregon

    What did you use for thread cutting fluid?
    Was your threading die dull?
     
  18. 1971BB427
    Joined: Mar 6, 2010
    Posts: 5,684

    1971BB427
    Member
    from Oregon

    I have always used Tapmatic, and never a problem. The die sure hasn't ever been an issue, and not like I could wear it out with the occasional use it's got on it. I think the biggest problem is simply oversized rod.
     
  19. DDDenny
    Joined: Feb 6, 2015
    Posts: 13,440

    DDDenny
    Member
    from oregon

    Val
    I was a machinist for 30 years and also ran the toolroom, bacķ then there was a Tapmatic that was specifically formulated for aluminum, I've heard they have reformulated it.
    I had a near disaster on a personal project once while machine tapping aluminum, the tap srarted to smoke and seize up when reversing, noticed I had grabbed the Tapmatic made for steel everything was fine once I got the correct lube for aluminum.
     
  20. 1971BB427
    Joined: Mar 6, 2010
    Posts: 5,684

    1971BB427
    Member
    from Oregon

    That's good info Denny! I did not know aluminum needed a special Tapmatic. So next time I'll see if I can find some! The die was sticky even turning it off the threads after threading the rod. I added more tapmatic while removing it and that helped. But nuts went on without an issue, and fit well. The right cutting fluid sure would have made the job easier. This aluminum rod is a pretty hard aluminum, and surprising that it bent and threaded with some work. It should hoold up well to stabilize the radiator for long term use.
     
  21. 1971BB427
    Joined: Mar 6, 2010
    Posts: 5,684

    1971BB427
    Member
    from Oregon

    Got the rust hole welded up on the passenger lower front fender, and the crack in the driver's front fender welded up. Also welded up the two 5/8" holes in the headlight housings. Then I stripped the rest the paint off the driver's side fender and after prepping both fenders I shot them with primer to make sure they don't flash rust.
    Got out the Rustoleum gloss black and painted the inside of both fenders also. Should have done the weld repairs, and painted them inside and out before hanging them as it would have been way easier. I ended up with gloss black everywhere I could get it on me! Hands, face, hair, you name it. Not a fun cleanup, but they're ready for bodywork now.
     
  22. 1971BB427
    Joined: Mar 6, 2010
    Posts: 5,684

    1971BB427
    Member
    from Oregon

    Well the first light of day in over 6 months! And I'm very happy with the stance, and pretty much everything so far. Got a tow strap on the rear and pulled it out front with the old Suburban this morning. Took some pictures while I waited for my nephew to get here. It's on our sloped front yard, so sitting low on the passenger side, and high on the driver's side. But just slightly uphill in front.

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    My neighbor came over to see it also, so the 3 of us pushed it back into the shop easily.
     
    Last edited: Feb 29, 2020
    Thor1, kidcampbell71, swade41 and 2 others like this.
  23. 1971BB427
    Joined: Mar 6, 2010
    Posts: 5,684

    1971BB427
    Member
    from Oregon

    Sold the old glass fenders to guy off CL cheap, so glad to see them go! He's building one of those R rods, and I guess he didn't care about fit.
     
    kidcampbell71 likes this.
  24. 1971BB427
    Joined: Mar 6, 2010
    Posts: 5,684

    1971BB427
    Member
    from Oregon

    Another gorgeous day here in the great NW! I did the final fitting on my hood, and then painted the inside gloss black. I adjusted my front hood pins to match the bracket I mounted inside the hood and locked them in. I added a flat bar to the back side of the top grille plate, just to ensure it was very solid, and strong.

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    Also added a double plate to the bracket inside, as it's narrow and I wanted it to be thicker.

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    Did a weld on each end of the double plate, and a few tacks on the edge. That should make it plenty strong.
    Once I got the hood and pin setup done I bent up brackets to mount the electric fan. It came with those cheap wire ties that you push through your radiator, and I've had issues with those breaking, or damaging the core. So I prefer mounting it slightly off the radiator and hooked to metal near the radiator. The grille mounting bolts were a good spot to attach brackets, and keep them short.

    I also sanded the exhaust pipes between the header collector, and the cutouts, and then shot this part satin black VHT. The pipes are kinda out there, and they detract from the look, so I think the satin black makes them blend in better.
     
    kidcampbell71 likes this.
  25. 1971BB427
    Joined: Mar 6, 2010
    Posts: 5,684

    1971BB427
    Member
    from Oregon

    Temp dropped like a rock today! About 15 degrees colder than yesterday, but I spent the day on the car anyway. I reworked the holes slightly for the hood pins, and then installed the stainless scuff plates on the hood.
    After that I measured up where to penetrate the floor and routed all my front wiring. Once it was routed I began the tedious chore of wrapping, and securing it. Added grommets and black plastic covering where it could see any harm, and tied it all up in place. Didn't get to actually hooking any of it up as it just took so long to route and dress it down.
    I cut down the 12"x 12"x 1.75" 90 degree lower hose and installed it on the radiator. Put the thermostat housing on and discovered the upper hose is the wrong diameter. The bozos gave me another 1.75" instead of the 1.5" I needed. So just stopped there, and quit for the day.
    I also discovered my wiring harness uses a 80a. fusible link that's a plug in type, but they didn't supply the link. So need to pick one of those up also. Have to spring for a battery soon also as I need to test everything I've wired before long.
     
    chryslerfan55 likes this.
  26. 1971BB427
    Joined: Mar 6, 2010
    Posts: 5,684

    1971BB427
    Member
    from Oregon

    Yesterday was time to make the first run on the engine in the '39. I am batting 50-50 on whether the distributor is in, or 180 out, and this time it was in! So that was a good start as the engine immediately fired, but died just as quickly. Several more tries with some gas dumped down the carb had similar results.
    Then suddenly gas began flowing everywhere, and a quick look showed it was pouring out of the sight glasses of both bowls on the 700 cfm Demon carb. So had to halt the trial, and order new sight glass kits. But when I went to order them I got into my usual distracted mode and found myself searching the internet for carbs. The Demon I have is rebuilt, but didn't come with sight glass kits. It also had the choke deleted, so that's another issue for starting and running. I found a Quick Fuel 650 double pumper at Holley's site on sale for under $250 shipped to me! So I decided I'll rebuild the Demon for some other use, and put the QF 650 on and have a new carb with electric choke also.

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    Thor1, chryslerfan55, swade41 and 2 others like this.
  27. loudbang
    Joined: Jul 23, 2013
    Posts: 29,116

    loudbang
    Member

    Man don't know how I missed this one, really liked your Falcon build and will follow this new one. :)
     
  28. 1971BB427
    Joined: Mar 6, 2010
    Posts: 5,684

    1971BB427
    Member
    from Oregon

    Thanks. Seems my images aren't showing up here for some reason? Many I posted that showed before are blank X's now?
     
    chryslerfan55 and loudbang like this.
  29. Val I see everything on this page, no x's for me, great come back with the front end, reminds me of putting the front end together on my black 41 p/u.
     
    loudbang likes this.
  30. 1971BB427
    Joined: Mar 6, 2010
    Posts: 5,684

    1971BB427
    Member
    from Oregon

    Thanks for letting me know that! I wonder why they don't show up on my view?
    I was thoroughly disgusted with that one piece frontend, and really dashed when the fit was so poor. I really wanted to use it since it is such a rare piece. But it just couldn't be saved. I was extremely excited that the steel fenders suddenly showed up for sale exactly at the right time when I'd given up on the glass fenders.
    Hopefully my new carb gets here next Wed. and I can get it running, and post a video. I'm anxious to hear that big Howards roller cam, and hope it's as good as expected.
     
    chryslerfan55, swade41 and loudbang like this.

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