The Snowball Saga - '68 Standard Revitalization Project

From dusty barn find to daily driver, it seems our cars are never really done. This is the place to share your progress on your project car. We will celebrate your victories and commiserate over your tragedies. But most of all this is a great place to learn!
Messenger
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Re: The Snowball Saga - '68 Standard Revitalization Project

Post by Messenger » 08 May 2015, 18:48

Note on the decal: make sure you test-fit it before peeling off the backing. I'm glad Don mentioned this to me while I was doing this. The decal is a little too big, so I had to sand down the edges a bit before it fit properly.

Here's a fancy "finished" shot.
Andrew, Is black the correct color for the insert on a polar white car?
Les
CCOA #9179
1967 Cougar, 302-2v

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jcbingcougar
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Re: The Snowball Saga - '68 Standard Revitalization Project

Post by jcbingcougar » 08 May 2015, 20:45

Messenger wrote: Is black the correct color for the insert on a polar white car?
Black is the correct color for the insert on every 67 & 68 Cougar.
Jeff Bingaman
1970 Cougar
1956 Ford F100
1960 Dodge Phoenix
2017 Mustang GT Premium
2017 F150 Platinum

http://www.cascadecougarclub.com

Messenger
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Re: The Snowball Saga - '68 Standard Revitalization Project

Post by Messenger » 09 May 2015, 06:44

MM white.jpg
MM white.jpg (84.08 KiB) Viewed 420 times
So why do I keep finding white ones? Reproductions??
Les
CCOA #9179
1967 Cougar, 302-2v

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jcbingcougar
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Re: The Snowball Saga - '68 Standard Revitalization Project

Post by jcbingcougar » 09 May 2015, 07:39

Nope. They are faded. I've seen some fade to gray, some to white and some to pink but they were all black to begin with.
Jeff Bingaman
1970 Cougar
1956 Ford F100
1960 Dodge Phoenix
2017 Mustang GT Premium
2017 F150 Platinum

http://www.cascadecougarclub.com

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Mike_B_SVT
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Re: The Snowball Saga - '68 Standard Revitalization Project

Post by Mike_B_SVT » 09 May 2015, 11:12

Awesome update, Andrew!
Mike B.
CCOA # 9553

1970 Cougar Eliminator (Competition Gold / Black Decor Interior)
1 of 70 with 428SCJ, Ram Air, 4-speed.
Cat Bites Man!

Looking for an Eliminator? Then be sure to check out the "Eliminators on the Market" thread in the Classic Cougars For Sale section of the forum!

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CougarCJ
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Re: The Snowball Saga - '68 Standard Revitalization Project

Post by CougarCJ » 09 May 2015, 15:16

To replicate the black oxide? look on suspension and other parts without painting, many professional restorers are using gun blue as used on firearms.

Jeff Speegle describes the process on a drive shaft here: http://www.concoursmustang.com/forum/in ... sg41#msg41
Scott Behncke 1968 XR7
Carcheologist - West Coast Classic Cougar


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1969XR7Vert
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Re: The Snowball Saga - '68 Standard Revitalization Project

Post by 1969XR7Vert » 09 May 2015, 15:24

CougarCJ wrote:To replicate the black oxide? look on suspension and other parts without painting, many professional restorers are using gun blue as used on firearms.

Jeff Speegle describes the process on a drive shaft here: http://www.concoursmustang.com/forum/in ... sg41#msg41
Eastwood sells phosphating solution (a kit of a jar and a bottle of green phosphoric (and what else?) acid). Works great, I used it on a TON of Isabel's fasteners. I follow up the phosphating with matte clear to simulate the oil and keep them nicer longer.

The gun blue sounds right for weld heat bluing (like on driveshaft), not sure it would look right on bolts and such.
Isabel, the realization of a seven year long dream:



Canted--Texan on the351cforum: "One of my most impressive attributes is that.......a lot of people don't like me.....or the horse I rode in on"

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Re: The Snowball Saga - '68 Standard Revitalization Project

Post by 8F91F » 16 Jun 2015, 10:15

Andrew,

I just finished reading through the entire project thread. Wow, inspiring. Awesome work and attention to detail. I've owned my '68 for 28 years and have yet to begin the type of resto that you've undertaken. In fact, I'm just working on getting mine back to basic operational status all after 19 years in storage. Sometime soon, I hope.

A couple of questions:
The August '14 open house photos (pg 16 of the thread) exhibit some stellar looking wheel covers. Did you recondition them? If so, I'd love to see a post (or video) on your process and the materials used, especially those Walking Cat center medallions.

Also, are you planning to pin stripe after all the body panels are reinstalled and aligned?

I'll be in the Bay area for a conference later this month and may have an opportunity to spectate a little at this year's Western National Show. Maybe Snowball's ready to attend, too?

Cheers,
Nate

1968 2-Door Hardtop | 8F91F587473
302 2V / 3-speed Manual / 2.79:1
Saxony Yellow / Med. Saddle Vinyl / Decor Group
Purchased 5/26/1987 @ 94,167 miles

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Blitz
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Re: The Snowball Saga - '68 Standard Revitalization Project

Post by Blitz » 16 Jun 2015, 11:09

Thanks Nate! It's been a long, daunting process and sometimes I feel in over my head, but it's getting there! It's been almost 4 years now since I was last driving it around, and the memory of being behind the wheel is part of the motivation to finish. That said, I'm slow and methodical, and don't always dedicate enough time to work on it. So it takes forever.

Answers: The wheel covers are just really nice originals I got at WCCC. I've also tried in vain to find someone who can reproduce the red center medallions. If I got my hands on some, I'd find a set of non-scratched wheel covers with good chrome, redo all the black paint and stick new emblems on. I think that would look great, to me the hubcaps and whitewalls look classy. Plus most people go with styled steel wheels or Magnums or whatever, it's actually pretty uncommon to see a car with nice hubcaps anymore, which makes it kinda cool IMO. Depends on the personality of the car of course.

Yes I will definitely pinstripe the car when it's ready for that. I may either use one of those tape-on templates and paint them on myself, or have a pro do them by hand.

I'll be at the show, but the Snowball will not. :( Still got a ways to go.
-Andrew Chenovick
Photo/Video guy for WEST COAST CLASSIC COUGAR, INC.
Side Gig: FLYING A PHOTOGRAPHY


RIDES:
-1968 Mercury Cougar: original family owned, Polar White, 289-2V, auto, AC / "Snowball" view project thread
-1973 Opel Manta: 1.9L, 5-speed (restored)
-1991 Mazda Miata: fun driver
-1986 Volvo 240: dependable beater / "Goldilocks"
-1979 Volvo 245: magnificently ugly brown wagon

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Blitz
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Re: The Snowball Saga - '68 Standard Revitalization Project

Post by Blitz » 03 Dec 2015, 13:42

Well I think I'm past due for a random update... most of these things happened months ago, I was just too lazy to post! Let's get up to speed now.

Picking up where I left off, I was getting ready to put the fenders on, which meant I had to finish with the kick panel speakers first. I finished off the holes in the sheet metal, threw a little paint on the bare edges, and installed the aftermarket buckets and speakers.

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Generous amount of sealant for good measure...

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I have the wires run to the trunk area because the current plan is to use an amplifier. I'm going to see if I can make some kind of mounting plate to attach the amp the the underside of the package tray without creating any new holes in the car. Will cross that bridge later.

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I also had to fix up my LH front splash shield. The rubber was much more brittle than the other side for some reason, and broke into a few pieces when I took it off the metal bracket. So I ordered some sheet rubber online and made a replacement.

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The new rubber was the right thickness, but not as rigid as the original stuff. I did some research and picked the one that sounded the best for this application... there are a lot of different types of rubber! I don't remember now what type it is, but feel free to chime in if you know what the proper type of rubber would be for this. I didn't use the reproduction kit because not only is it for Mustang, thus shaped incorrectly for the Cougar, but the rubber is even thinner and floppier. It sounds like a Cougar version may be in the works, which would be great, but for the time being I think my solution will work fine.

Anyway, test fitting onto the [sandblasted] bracket so I could poke through the staple holes to reuse them:

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And fastened in place with wire after painting the bracket:

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Next, it was time to get the fenders themselves ready. I wanted to undercoat the inside of the fenders for good measure / original-ness, so I embarked on a journey of masking the entire outer portions so I could do just that. This took a while. The giant piece of foam was a lifesaver, I highly recommend having one around.

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Then carefully set it down outside to do the undercoating:

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Next I revealed this front flange and refined the masking on the leading edge, so I could paint this area semi-gloss black. I know it would have been body color originally, but my thinking is that it will look cleaner behind the grille if everything is blacked out.

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Ta-da:

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Unmasked and pretty:

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... and then did the same thing to the other fender, of course. Guess I don't need to show you those pics. You get it.

Now it was time to put them on the car! Kind of exciting to put such big pieces on.

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But first, don't forget these clips (I used this kit)

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...and also a line of goo, kinda like factory, to seal the fenders to the aprons. Same 3M "strip caulk" I've been using all over the place.

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Fast forward after some fiddling around, trying to get it lined up to the door and hood, going from one end to the other snugging bolts down, and:

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Gaps looking decent, for a noob:

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Repeat process on the other side:

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Another look at gaps:

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Yay! It looks more like a car now. Pretty cool to see it with most of the major panels on, finally. Speaking of major panels, next up was the trunk lid. Given the issues I'd had with my painter, whose current whereabouts is unknown, I decided to just paint the hinges and rods myself. The Duplicolor "perfect match" Wimbledon White is a pretty good match for Polar White (same color code) so I picked up some rattle cans and primed, painted, and cleared these parts. They came out pretty good.

Sandblasted:

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Done:

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Installed:

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Definitely scratched my paint up trying to install the rods... will have to touch these areas up. The rattle can paint is probably not as durable as real automotive paint.

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Meanwhile, here's the bottom side of the tunk lid, before and after installing the latch and weatherstrip.

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By the way, notice how I got a little overzealous with the weathersrtip adhesive? Anyone have any tips on how I can clean that up without messing up the paint? A solvent perhaps?

Finally, here it is on the car. I ended up laying in the trunk with a socket and flashlight to adjust the hinges while a helper made adjustments to make sure it was on straight / even gaps.

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So... remember how I had the rear window channel patched with 2 different used pieces? (This was before the new patch panel was available) Well, I just found out that the contour wasn't quite done right, so the forward edge of the trunk lid actually sticks up a little. Bummer.

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Anyway, how about a little educational segway about trunk lid installation? This is a short video I made on how to install the torsion bars, using this tool. Also I show which side is which (the bars are side-specific) and mention the anti-rattle strip.



So... that was back in June, and that's basically the last major thing I've done. Wow... I've been slacking!

I hope to have more updates soon, but we'll see if that actually happens. One of the current things I'm working on is polishing the stainless window frames for the side windows. Still need to do some sanding, buffing, and reassembly... then figure out how all the mechanisms and stuff go in the car. Luckily there are plenty of other Cougars nearby to look at. Until next time!
-Andrew Chenovick
Photo/Video guy for WEST COAST CLASSIC COUGAR, INC.
Side Gig: FLYING A PHOTOGRAPHY


RIDES:
-1968 Mercury Cougar: original family owned, Polar White, 289-2V, auto, AC / "Snowball" view project thread
-1973 Opel Manta: 1.9L, 5-speed (restored)
-1991 Mazda Miata: fun driver
-1986 Volvo 240: dependable beater / "Goldilocks"
-1979 Volvo 245: magnificently ugly brown wagon

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