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post #16 of 124 (permalink) Old 03-15-2014, 10:39 PM Thread Starter
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Re: 68 Cougar XR-7 Build


I also sprayed the grill. The paint that I'm using is a satin, with a self etching primer built in. Pretty cool stuff. Once the paint's set, I'll go back through with a towel and acetone, and remove it on the large chrome stripes.


It's starting to look like a car!!

Anyhow, to finish things up, I thought I fixed the two tiny cracks in the passenger side headlight assembly (JB Weld is wonderful stuff...but it doesn't work well on potmetal, lol) I got off eBay. I did some research and found some stuff called 'Muggyweld' that is supposed to work better. I'm going to order some of that shortly, get the other grill fixed, and get it painted also.

~These are just some of the drawbacks we...as guys who like to go mach 10 with our hair on fire and these little motors screaming at rpms that make other guys cry...have to deal with.~
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post #17 of 124 (permalink) Old 03-15-2014, 10:43 PM Thread Starter
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Re: 68 Cougar XR-7 Build

Which brings us to this last week lol.

I spent some time doing a quick and dirty resto on my tail lights. Basically I just separated the housing, cleaned everything, buffed the lenses, scuffed/sanded all the chipped areas of the chrome, and repainted them. For the short term this will have to do. Like I said...I need to get the car moving, lol. Once that's done, I'll go back and revisit sections of the car at a time. I know that sounds backwards as it's 'easier' while everything's apart, but I genuinely hate having a project around that I can't drive within a reasonable period of time.

Anyhow, I'm pretty happy with how it turned out...here's a couple pictures.




Not too bad. 100% better than the way they were (hopefully you can tell which I had already finished lol).



On the car.

So that's that...one more post with the (hopefully) final direction the motor has taken...and we're up to date!

~These are just some of the drawbacks we...as guys who like to go mach 10 with our hair on fire and these little motors screaming at rpms that make other guys cry...have to deal with.~
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post #18 of 124 (permalink) Old 03-15-2014, 10:52 PM Thread Starter
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Re: 68 Cougar XR-7 Build

So...I discovered an annoying issue with the Canfields. The springs were NOT new Iskys (as advertised), and NOT the right ones for the cam (as advertised)...and in order to fix the issue it I was going to have to drop $600 more on springs. That wasn't going to happen. Soooo, I sold the Canfields to a friend, and am using the money (along with the money from selling all my carb parts) to pick up some lifters to run with the top end setup I already had on hand.








Any of you guys recognize these? AND NO HINTS from you guys who've seen my thread on TooNuts, lol!


~These are just some of the drawbacks we...as guys who like to go mach 10 with our hair on fire and these little motors screaming at rpms that make other guys cry...have to deal with.~
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post #19 of 124 (permalink) Old 03-15-2014, 11:06 PM Thread Starter
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Re: 68 Cougar XR-7 Build

@Jetfixr...those headers are designed to fit a High Port in a 67 Mustang (same engine compartment). These heads have a 3/4" raised exhaust just like the High Ports.

Now you see why I was looking up shock tower notching posts??


~These are just some of the drawbacks we...as guys who like to go mach 10 with our hair on fire and these little motors screaming at rpms that make other guys cry...have to deal with.~

Last edited by Is1BadFord; 03-15-2014 at 11:09 PM.
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post #20 of 124 (permalink) Old 03-16-2014, 04:58 AM
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Re: 68 Cougar XR-7 Build

Looking good my friend. Lots of work on that one, but true car guys just shrug it off and never look back.

Glad that the heads and intake are seeing daylight again. Should be a frigg'in awesome powerplant for the 68! Hope the T5 can handle it once you get the combo sorted out.

Dennis

65' Stang Street/Strip. Dart 434W NA, Victor heads, G101A 4 Spd, 4:56 rear gear, on 93 octane pushing 3550lbs. [email protected]
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post #21 of 124 (permalink) Old 03-16-2014, 05:25 AM Thread Starter
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Re: 68 Cougar XR-7 Build

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Originally Posted by dennis111 View Post
Looking good my friend. Lots of work on that one, but true car guys just shrug it off and never look back.

Glad that the heads and intake are seeing daylight again. Should be a frigg'in awesome powerplant for the 68! Hope the T5 can handle it once you get the combo sorted out.
Thanks man .

I guess I skipped the post about my transmission somehow when transferring my progress. I picked up a dog ring g-force t-5… mcleod scattershield, triax shifter, and a centerforce clutch with both a dual friction disc, and a promotion disc. I mean, a stock t5 can be made to live longer than people might expect, particularly on the street…but at this power level, going into third under full throttle with any amount of traction would spell the end, lol.

On a semi related note…did I mention that there's three different e85 stations within a couple miles of my house? Good thing too, or those flat top pistons and these 45cc chambers would be a big no no!


~These are just some of the drawbacks we...as guys who like to go mach 10 with our hair on fire and these little motors screaming at rpms that make other guys cry...have to deal with.~

Last edited by Is1BadFord; 03-16-2014 at 05:28 AM.
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post #22 of 124 (permalink) Old 03-20-2014, 11:43 PM Thread Starter
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Re: 68 Cougar XR-7 Build




Sooo...is this considered 'progress'?...or 'demolition?



I'm probably going to change a few things. First...I may fab two brackets to run coilovers in place of the stock spring/sock/perch setup. Reason being...I have the right size threaded body coilovers sitting around from the dirt track cars...and I've got about 50 different sets of springs sitting around also lol. The only real benefits I expect to see are maybe 20lbs off the front end (in a good spot!!), and more room to open up the shock towers. The top bracket will bolt under the existing upper shock bracket (which will be removed), and the bottom one will replace the spring perch. I'll use simple stock car shock mount brackets welded to the appropriate sized plates to make the brackets. All of my shocks mount via rod ends at both the upper and lower positions.

Anyhow...that's just something I'm kicking around...I've got a bit of time before I decide...but less shock tower (and thus more room!), is always a good thing.

On the cylinder head front...I should be ordering the reaming tool for my lifter bores here this week. I'm also going to be ordering my Megasquirt kit shortly as well. I'm going with the MS3x, and will be running full sequential spark and fuel (distributorless with LSx coil packs). The best part is that later, I'll be able to run stacked injectors (2 injectors per port). The primaries will be sequential, smallish (perhaps 36's or 42's), mount very low, shoot basically horizontally into the port, and handle all the low load/rpm fuel supply. The secondaries will probably be 60's, and will run off of batch fire. My biggest problem with the fuel injection setup I have at this point...is figuring out an air filtration solution which first...is capable of supplying 3000+cfm, and second...doesn't cost $400 plus. I REALLY like the K&N sprint car air boxes (and they should be very easy to fit to this intake system), but they're crazy expensive. I mean...$408 for JUST the freakin filter?? Seriously?! Here's a picture:



So there's that. Maybe I'll try Racingjunk for a used one, lol. Any other ideas on that front would be very much appreciated.

Sooo, there we have it. Moving along slowly but surely. I'm hoping to have the thing running and driving by the end of summer (maybe, lol). Part of me thinks if I get it driving in the next 6mos...I'll have really pulled something off though =p.

~These are just some of the drawbacks we...as guys who like to go mach 10 with our hair on fire and these little motors screaming at rpms that make other guys cry...have to deal with.~
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post #23 of 124 (permalink) Old 03-23-2014, 02:52 PM
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Re: 68 Cougar XR-7 Build

Looking good! And yep I see the reason for notching the towers. LOL
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post #24 of 124 (permalink) Old 03-26-2014, 07:17 PM Thread Starter
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Re: 68 Cougar XR-7 Build

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Originally Posted by Jetfixr320 View Post
Looking good! And yep I see the reason for notching the towers. LOL
Welll...I tried it out, lol.



Thankfully, before I started welding things up, I decided to go ahead and drop a spare 302 block in using the factory motor mounts...so I could put my heads on and see what was what.



The lowest chalk line, is the level of the control arm mounts. I'm thinking that there's no way my headers will be fitting in there...but I'm still going to drop them in there if possible, and see. It might be that lowering them 1.5" or whatever it is, and losing that much more shock tower...will make some difference.



Yeah...going to have to run the Wilwood compact master cylinder I think.



The camera is sitting on the inner fender here, and the tailshaft of the transmission still needs to come up about 1" or so. What I'll probably do instead however, is leave the transmission where it is (weld tabs to my crossmember), and lower the motor with the plates when I lose the motor mounts. The only reason I'm mocking it up with the factory mounts at all is to get a baseline position.


About 5" to the center of the hood. From the top of the intake as/is, I need 3" in throttle bodies, and probably a 5" air filter as pictured above. Yeah, I think this thing is going to be getting a scoop...lol.




Here you see the T5 setup. The crossmember is simply a slotted C4 unit, with the C4 mount bushing. I've never had to weld tabs to it to make it work like I hear others do (this is my third conversion). When I do them for my cars, I slot them the entire length...just in case the motor needs to slide forward, then back when getting the headers to fit (the bolts are just loosely in there when I'm installing headers). Like I said above, I'll probably leave this one dropped an even inch from the factory location. That'll put the shifter base just below the tunnel, and let me drop the motor a bit as well.


I dunno...I've never seen a big block in one of these cars in person...but with those heads, intake, and valve covers...this thing doesn't look like any small block I've ever seen, lol. Can't wait to get it in there permanently!

Anyhow...I'm currently researching my options on methods to ditch the factory upper a-arms, just in case lowering them won't work. I was initially leaning towards a Mustang II setup...but I talked to another friend with a 67 Cougar, and he used the AJE k-member with coil over struts. The way I figure it...If I want to go to the Mustang II at a later date, I still can. Wheras, if I decide I want struts after doing the Mustang II...that'll be a bit harder lol. Plus I hear that Cal Tracs like some front end travel, and the struts give something like 5.5" versus something less than that for the Mustang II.

Guess we'll see when the time comes .

~These are just some of the drawbacks we...as guys who like to go mach 10 with our hair on fire and these little motors screaming at rpms that make other guys cry...have to deal with.~
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post #25 of 124 (permalink) Old 03-27-2014, 03:51 AM
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Re: 68 Cougar XR-7 Build

That top end is monstrous!!!!! Hopefully it'll be built to scream as its already shouting "Look at me".

The MC ports that you have are facing the wrong way compared to stock, but with those valve covers I would go the more compact route instead. Sectioning the valve covers to make them lower would gain you more working clearance when changing plugs or whatever.

What's the screw looking thing under the intake that blocks the distributor from going in?

I don't see you getting the headers that you already have in there with the UCA's. Maybe a pair of 351w swap headers for a 65/66 Mustang??? Either way it looks like the UCA's need to go. The coilover route intrigues me, but I don't have the knowledge (or funds) to make the jump and I would first want to be sure that the structural integrity of the front end remains.

Thanks for the cool looking pics.

Dennis

65' Stang Street/Strip. Dart 434W NA, Victor heads, G101A 4 Spd, 4:56 rear gear, on 93 octane pushing 3550lbs. [email protected]

Last edited by dennis111; 03-27-2014 at 03:55 AM.
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post #26 of 124 (permalink) Old 03-27-2014, 07:16 AM Thread Starter
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Re: 68 Cougar XR-7 Build

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Originally Posted by dennis111 View Post
That top end is monstrous!!!!! Hopefully it'll be built to scream as its already shouting "Look at me".

The MC ports that you have are facing the wrong way compared to stock, but with those valve covers I would go the more compact route instead. Sectioning the valve covers to make them lower would gain you more working clearance when changing plugs or whatever.

What's the screw looking thing under the intake that blocks the distributor from going in?

I don't see you getting the headers that you already have in there with the UCA's. Maybe a pair of 351w swap headers for a 65/66 Mustang??? Either way it looks like the UCA's need to go. The coilover route intrigues me, but I don't have the knowledge (or funds) to make the jump and I would first want to be sure that the structural integrity of the front end remains.

Thanks for the cool looking pics.

Well, I hope it screams of course, lol. I'm sure the car will be slower at first. There's going to be a decent amount of testing, creeping up on the tune, and even more importantly getting a nearly 50yr old car that was basically growing weeds, ready for what should be 9 second power. I don't know if I'll ever actually be running in the 9's with it...but someday I'd like to.

The MC is an SVO unit for the disc/disc setup. I'm not exactly sure how the Wilwood MC handles dealing with 4whl discs...but they're inexpensive, and if it works out that's what I'll be running. Dropping the motor an inch is going to help valve cover clearance...but I'm really going to have to watch my lash with this setup, and right now, I couldn't get the valve cover off if I tried. Also, when it comes to sectioning the valve covers...there's no room lol. When you look through the breather holes, the rockers are right there. I thought about cutting down the outboard edge like a Cleveland, but the way the rockers are twisted prevents that too. Fun stuff.

Screw looking thing...oh!...I think you're looking at the other fuel rail. It's just laying in the valley, lol. Nice thing about that distributor hole though, is it'll be filled with a cam position sensor versus a distributor. That IS fun stuff .

On the headers...I don't know. I know that on the last motor, it didn't look like there was room for them against the shock towers either...but they eventually fit. If/when I swap to the AJE setup on the front (here's a link to some cool install pictures: 68 Mustang K-Member installation - 460 Ford Forum), I was told Fox body type headers will work. What I'd probably do though is send my heads to George, tell him I'm running the AJE setup, and let him make a new set. Either that, or have a set built here. I'm going to do my best to get things set as/is though. Need to order an upper control arm drop template.

On the pictures...I've found though that it's actually a big help for me to be able to go back and look again at the pictures and notes I made while doing it, as I move around to other parts of the build then come back to whatever I was working on. Additionally...writing things out like this...once I'm not in the middle of DOING it, has kept me from making some pretty bone headed mistakes, as well as helped me solve problems I was way too close to while actually working on the thing. Then there's the fact that you guys always have great ideas yourselves. I've gone in directions with things that I might never have thought of myself as a direct result of suggestions and comments I've got from you guys in these types of threads. Honestly...I've come to enjoy this part of the build as much as doing the actual work.

So thank you as well .

~These are just some of the drawbacks we...as guys who like to go mach 10 with our hair on fire and these little motors screaming at rpms that make other guys cry...have to deal with.~
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post #27 of 124 (permalink) Old 03-30-2014, 12:09 AM Thread Starter
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Re: 68 Cougar XR-7 Build

Sooo...I've pretty much decided on doing a coilover strut type front end. The price breakdown using a mix of aftermarket, aftermarket fox body, and OEM SN95 parts ends up being right under $1500. This includes strange adjustable coilover struts, QA1 adjustable tubular lowers, caster camber plates, and a brand new pinto rack. After that, its all going to be about packaging it to work with the early car's frame. I'm not going to do a k-member, as our cars had only a tubular bolt in support from the factory. I'm assuming I'll have to fabricate mounts off of the bottom of the frame, but since the lowers I chose mount with rod ends...that won't be too difficult. A friend of mine owns Fox Body Performance here in Glendale, so I'm going to run up while he has a car on a lift and take some measurements to see what I'm facing. I'm going to 'try' to maintain my factory front track, but if it ends up changing within an inch (probably wider) or so to accommodate easier mount locations...that'll be ok too.

Measurements of particular importance:
-Length of control arms from each chassis mount point to the ball joint.
-Distance from floor to each control arm chassis mount point at ride height.
-Distance from frame centerline to each control arm chassis mount point.
-Distance from floor to lower ball joint at ride height.
-Distance from floor to upper strut mount.
-Note any fore and aft difference from upper strut mount to lower ball joint in the placement of the strut for reference.

Basically my idea (if my above measurements show this swap to even be feasible) is to modify/mount the caster/camber plates in the existing factory spring pocket in the Cougar's shock tower, install the strut (without the coilover spring initially), SN95 spindle, and lower control arm assembly. Support the lower control arm so that the chassis mount points and ball joint are oriented properly (as measured at ride height above), and the spindle hub is properly located and oriented as well (I'm guessing perfectly vertical will be the best initial placement lol). Basically I plan on 'rebuilding' the factory fox body setup with the upper strut mount as the only fixed point. This should locate where my new control arm mount brackets go for me with a very small margin of error. Any minor variances should be able to be taken care of with the caster/camber plate, and the adjustable lower control arms. Once the assembly is mounted, that will determine my rack mount point, which should be hopefully somewhere in front of the oil pan. At this point I'll also assess the whole setup for improvements I can make to the suspension geometry, if there is any.

So do you guys see any glaring deficiencies in my plan? I've built front subframe for unlimited late model dirt cars that worked flawlessly...but they were SLA type stuff, never strut based. I did speak to a friend who built his setup using strange universal coilover struts, and this is pretty much what he did also, only he didn't have an OEM setup to pattern his off of. His car traps over 145mph, without issue...so I'm hoping it works out as planned.

Anyhow, just a small update!

~These are just some of the drawbacks we...as guys who like to go mach 10 with our hair on fire and these little motors screaming at rpms that make other guys cry...have to deal with.~

Last edited by Is1BadFord; 03-30-2014 at 12:13 AM.
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post #28 of 124 (permalink) Old 03-30-2014, 06:35 AM
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Re: 68 Cougar XR-7 Build

Wow...

I'm really enjoying reading about this... it's hands down more than I will ever do to my 68, but all your pictures really help me get an idea what I'll be getting into once I begin tearing it apart.

-David

1995 F150 4x4 - Regular cab, 5.0L, Deep Forest Green Metallic
1968 Mercury Cougar - 302 4V, C4, my dream muscle car!
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post #29 of 124 (permalink) Old 03-30-2014, 11:06 AM Thread Starter
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Re: 68 Cougar XR-7 Build

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Wow...

I'm really enjoying reading about this... it's hands down more than I will ever do to my 68, but all your pictures really help me get an idea what I'll be getting into once I begin tearing it apart.
Thank you my friend. That brings up the final reason I enjoy sharing my builds on forums like these. I still get PM's regularly from the Mustang build I documented here...and I've always enjoyed helping others where I can .

~These are just some of the drawbacks we...as guys who like to go mach 10 with our hair on fire and these little motors screaming at rpms that make other guys cry...have to deal with.~
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post #30 of 124 (permalink) Old 03-30-2014, 03:11 PM
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Re: 68 Cougar XR-7 Build

Chris,

Read through this site, TwinTorino.com

It could give you some direction if you want to go this far. And use a K frame and shock towers from a Mustang.

Jet
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