Ford Muscle Cars Tech Forum banner
361 - 373 of 373 Posts

22,096 Posts
I think that style started with '64, not sure on 63.5 but '63 is more like the '63 Tbird. Square backed with an insert in the whole center area. At least that's how the '63 seats looked when I was engine hunting and was going to buy a complete '63 Tbird. Noticed the seats weren't like mine so postponed the buying to see if I could find a different option. Funny I didn't want it cause the seats weren't like mine. I have my own little guidelines I guess!🤪 '64 birds did have the same. Was odd to me also when I first noticed they were all the same just different patterns of seat cover and like you mentioned, the panel on the back of the turtle shell. Makes for more options when needing seats though!

I saw that the power steering system is almost the same through many years and in GMs also. Small differences or the size of this or that is different but all basically the same. Really noticed it when I was doing mine and there was a early 70s vette on the lift next to me. They were going to be swapping out some ps parts on it also so it all worked out for us all. I got to use a lift and they got to see how to do it. Which really they would of figured out regaurdless but made it a bit easier for them in plan of attack.

As for pinning, this is a very well done write up and covers a lot of areas. Makes for a great first stop when trying to find answers questions. Even if not same year I bet there's many cross-over things, like the upholstery that works for any year on the basics. You're almost up there with JC, without all the quotes! I better watch out as his 'friends' might get me if he sees this!👀😂 But can't argue with the details!

Hello ShotRod64,

You know sometimes I can be so obtuse, I didn't even realize till your post here that the bucket seats for the '65/'66 XL/7 Litre package are carry overs from late second gen full size Fords. Then the idea was cemented this last Friday as we went to a local car meet and there was a '64 galaxie 500 XL with the seats I could see in person. The material pattern is different and I think the centre back aluminum beauty trim changed with a washboard effect by '66 but otherwise those are the same seats.

The funny thing I noticed about these seats is that they are actually more comfortable than the bucket seats in both of our '68 XL's. Obviously I couldn't make a determination till after one was refurbished as our '66 bucket seats were just destroyed in that old Texas car. Plus I wouldn't have thought such a thin seat could be comfortable and by contrast the '68 factory bucket seats are very thick and it gives the illusion of more comfort.

Now for the bottom seat portion of the '66 buckets we did not pull the centre down with those listing rods and left it more convex in shape just because we felt it would be more comfortable. Maybe that helped, maybe it hindered. Dunno, it was just our decision to try it that way and deviate a bit from the factory design.

As a side note thank you for pinning this post. I hope others can find it useful, there is much in here. Plus it makes it easier for me to find when I update it :)


1,919 Posts
Discussion Starter · #362 ·
Front Seats Restoration Part 11

We finally finished the front seats. Turns out the drivers side had broken seat tracks that I didn't even catch because they were covered in nasty. Let's face it that whole car was just covered in nasty.

It's still smokey at times here because of the New Mexico fires, so some days it's best to work inside with the windows closed and air con on. Perfect for upholstery.

Just a quick side track, here's the fires from our front porch. Kind of cool photos.

That's a 200 mm telephoto.

And a 500 mm telephoto. My better half is an avid photographer and took these shots. That fire was so hot they were reporting that trees 1/2 mile in front of the fire line were exploding from the quick boiling of water and sap. They stopped the aeronautical dropping of water on the main fire because a 2000 gal water drop never made it to the ground. Now that's hot!

Anyway back to the ol galaxie.

The drivers seat:

That's the main section of the seat bottom done, it sat and stretched whilst we worked on the top.

This is the old burlap with the rods.

Old rods in new burlap.

Slicing new channels in the 1965 foam for 1966 seat covers.

The seat cover with the rods in the seat cover tied back to the rods in the seat frame and the upper burlap area installed.

The top cover more or less on.

Continued in next post.

1,919 Posts
Discussion Starter · #363 ·
Front Seats Restoration Part 12

Exploring for the holes and poking new holes in new covers always adds a certain anxiety. But the top slide brackets are in.

The back cover ready to go on. Just left it original blue for funzies on the inside.

The seat bottom prepped for the upper to attach.

Geeze you need to eat your Wheaties to manually spread those pivot arms on the top to go over the fulcrum stubs.

The seat back hardware is a bit different than the passenger side seat. Weird.

Both seat tracks were broken at one time probably from an overweight individual rocking in the seat and fractured metal on both sides, now someone had welded them, but good grief that's terrible.

There's some plate they added and it doesn't sit flush at all with the floor. So I cut this back apart and removed that plate and used the floor as a jig.

Continued in next post.

1,919 Posts
Discussion Starter · #364 ·
Front Seats Restoration Part 13

I repaired one seat track already and this is the picture of the second one. So I check to make sure the seat tracks are flush with the floor braces, level with respect to each other and the seat holes are in square. Then I used 4130 TIG welding rod (lord this stuff skyrocketed in price) and TIG'd the pieces back together mostly whilst attached to the floor. 4130 rod is a good alloy that resists cracking from constant flexing. I made the weld wide and hoping for good flow into parent material to imbue this property in the molten zone so no extra plates are needed. Plus this 4130 rod is harder and stronger than ordinary Er70.

Here's the finished repair on one of the tracks. You get the idea for the other one. Also the extreme weight of the individual splayed the tracks U section apart so I had to squeeze it back together. These poor things were so abused.

All back together, greased and the cross linkage adjusted.

Holy smokes (quite literally outside) these puppies are done. These were hideous to do and such a time vampire.

Just to recap what these looked like.

What a pile of ........... :poop:


This concludes the seats.

My better half tackled the package shelf.

All the insulation just disintegrated that was glued to it.

The top needs some scrubbing. Now this is interesting as I have seen '66 gal 500 XL's and 7 Litre packages with a pressboard one of these and it they just fall apart. This is metal one. It's nice in that it's easily cleaned and painted but geeze will you crack the base of your skull on that high rear crown behind the seat if someone rear ends you. So just put the people you don't like in the back seat :unsure:.

It came out pretty good in the new colour. Still have to sort out the emblem in the middle of the speaker grill area, but otherwise this is done.

Continued in next post.

1,919 Posts
Discussion Starter · #365 ·
Cowl Replacement Continued.

After the coats of POR 15 in the interior of the cowl, the 3M seam sealer was applied to the interior.

Next the splash guard had to be welded back in. So I prepped the area and welded that in.

Prepped the side piece and welded that in.

Same thing applied to this side.

So this cowl is mix match of pieces of different cars and you would think the stampings would be similar and they should interchange easily. No. They didn't. I had to massage quite a bit on this side to get the seams closed. It's clear they had different dies for different cars (heater only vs factory HVAC) or different factories. Dunno, but they are different. I spent quite a bit of time on this. Even the front section lines up different. I doubled and triple checked the critical dimensions on everything and all seems well. Just drove me nuts.

Continued in next post.

1,919 Posts
Discussion Starter · #366 ·
Cowl Replacement Continued.

I gave it another coat of POR 15 over the welded areas.

I know I seem like a anti corrosion religious zealot, but having grown up in the rust belt I'm paranoid after loosing a couple cars to insidious rust. I want to be able to drive this thing in all but the worst conditions and know I don't have to worry about it.

The cowl welding is done! All that's left is to install the door nut plates.

In the midst of this I did cut the hole for the floor shift.

This is the centre console and I needed to mark out a proper size hole and not the meteor hole Ford originally cut.

This is the piece of the original floor with the hole cut by Ford, or rather Ray Charles by the looks of it. I have what I believe to be an adequate hole marked out in the floor above it. Big difference.......

Seems to work just fine in that small hole. One nice thing about an HVAC firewall is that cavernous centre opening so I can stick myself through and shoot this photo.

I bought a generic boot but being the fulcrum is up top and not under the tunnel it won't really work well. I shall have to return to the mothership to have a think about this further on what to use as a boot for the long term.

More to come.

1,919 Posts
Discussion Starter · #367 ·
Interior HVAC Plenum Part 1

I have two HVAC plenums to go, I finished the heater core plenum and decided to tackle the interior plenum next. These are all pretty roached so there is a high probability that yours will be in better shape. I guess these are more worst case scenario situations.

Wood Bumper Motor vehicle Automotive exterior Engineering

I picked one out of three to redo. They are all about in the same condition.

Automotive tire Gas Composite material Wood Machine

The other two will be part donors if need be.

Motor vehicle Combat vehicle Self-propelled artillery Gas Wood

Motor vehicle Hood Automotive tire Bumper Vehicle

SITREP: The foam is either missing, or falling apart. The rubber on the fresh air door is starting to delaminate from the steel door. The steel evaporator inset is rusting, the plastic case has cracks, but the air door servos are still good, so that's something.

Blue Bumper Automotive tire Motor vehicle Automotive exterior

First step is removing the main foam section to expose the rivets to drill out in order to separate the steel surround plate.

Motor vehicle Wood Bumper Automotive exterior Gas

Then drill out seemingly a million other rivets to take the whole thing apart. Ford packed parts of this with Automotive Bedding Compound and it's a pain to remove and clean. It's just slightly less annoying to deal with than butyl.

Table Motor vehicle Automotive exterior Bumper Wood

This is after walnut blasting. The plastic is in decent shape, and I decided to fix the broken spots and just clear coat this one inside and out. Since this plastic plenum is on the inside of the cabin it sees less heat and hydrocarbon exposure so it isn't degraded as the engine bay side plenums.

Plus I did find a little bit of body seam sealer in here, which of course is Asbestos in a rubber binder from Ford. So it's a good thing to have that removed.

Product Hood Motor vehicle Bumper Automotive design

After countless hours of blasting, repairing and painting, here's the parts ready for reassembly.

Hood Automotive tire Audio equipment Gas Automotive design

Here's where I am going to do things a bit different than factory. I am going to use this very sticky insulating tape on parts of the steel evaporator inset.

Hood Automotive design Bumper Automotive exterior Wood

The reason for this is this steel inset piece sees the cool air from the evaporator and on a muggy hot day this will sweat like mad in the plastic plenum. Now the unique design of the plenum exposes the back side of this steel inset to the defrost (windscreen passage) and heat (floor) passage. If this starts condensing water from the interior it will start raining water out of the heater vents from the plenum.

One problem I have noted with these air con systems is the evaporator temperature is controlled stritctly by the thermostat and not refrigerant pressure as a more modern vehicle would be. That means if the thermostat has a set point lower than freezing it will take the evaporator down that cold. In my '68 XL on full cold the air coming out of the dash vents is so cold it hurts your hands. Add a muggy day and it would be raining condensate from the back side of this metal insert and all over the carpet by your feet. In order to mitigate that, if I insulate the back and side, that should preclude that possibility.

Continued in next post.

1,919 Posts
Discussion Starter · #368 ·
Interior HVAC Plenum Part 2

Hood Blue Wood Composite material Bumper

This is the idea to start.

Black Rectangle Wood Gas Font

White Light Black Blue Guitar accessory

Hood Bumper Trunk Motor vehicle Automotive exterior

To get a better idea of what I'm talking about, that metal insert goes straight in. The upper air channel is the defrost to the windscreen section and the lower portion is the floor heat air channel. That metal insert divides three distinct air channels (heat/defrost/air con to centre dash vents). It's clever in an ignorant way. This is because whilst is a good use of limited area under the dash, the whole system is a bit retarded because you cannot get dehumidified hot air to the windscreen where it would really help reduce fogging than regular heated outside air, which of course is what you get with these 65-68 full size systems.

Food Ingredient Material property Font Cuisine

I am going to use a host of this generic aftermarket EPDM weatherstripping to put this back together.

Wood Rectangle Art Automotive tire Hood

Instead of packing the underside with gobs of nasty Automotive Bedding Compound I am going to use weather strip to seal it off.

Hood Bumper Automotive exterior Gas Auto part

Here's a better shot where you can see the lower heat passage formed by the metal insert and the upper defrost passage formed. Not less forgetting the obvious air con dash passage formed in the centre. This is a test fit.

Automotive exterior Gas Automotive tire Bumper Auto part

Before you can install the big metal evaporator insert this side heat vent must be installed. Now this was all originally riveted together. I am choosing to use stainless fasteners rather that rivets for two really good reasons. First the plastic is aged and getting brittle and any unnecessary crimping force can split/crack it. Secondly Ford used Rosette style rivets because they spread out the load and do not crimp as hard. Those rivets are very hard to find and expensive when you do find them. The stainless hardware I used is expensive but easy to source and I can control how much clamping force to use.

Wood Hood Bumper Automotive exterior Computer keyboard

I decided to acorn nuts because I still have loads of custom wiring to do in this confined dash space and one of pet peeves is sharp items cutting my hands. Using regular nuts or KL nuts would probably lead to that. Plus I think the acorn nut looks nicer.

Hood Motor vehicle Automotive tire Electronic instrument Bumper

Now this can get installed.

Continued in next post.

1,919 Posts
Discussion Starter · #369 ·
Interior HVAC Plenum Part 3

Automotive tire Gas Auto part Font Engineering

These items when attached also hold the big metal insert into the plenum.

Bumper Motor vehicle Gas Audio equipment Electronic instrument

Bumper Automotive exterior Office equipment Gas Motor vehicle

Here's a better view of the insulation tape I used to control condensate from the air con in the defrost passage.

Bumper Typewriter Office equipment Gas Automotive exterior

And the heater/floor section. You can see it would just dribble out the floor vents if allowed to build up.

Blue Automotive tire Bumper Automotive exterior Office supplies

Evaporator support goes in next.

Gas Technology Bumper Machine Wood

Asphalt Font Sky Art Cloud

Next I installed the hose straps.

Wood Rolling stock Motor vehicle Railway Bumper

Originally they were up-side-down, this arrangement seemed to make a little more sense.

Automotive tire Wood Font Gas Tree

Next are the brackets to hold two vacuum servos on.

Automotive tire Bumper Motor vehicle Gas Wood

Now on those I had to use KL nuts because the servos wouldn't clear the acorn nut, but since the servos cover the KL nuts it doesn't matter.

Continued in next post.

1,919 Posts
Discussion Starter · #370 ·
Interior HVAC Plenum Part 4

Blue Paint Font Asphalt Art

Next was to install the defrost/floor (heat) mode door. In heat mode, you can either get heated outside air to the windscreen or floor. This is the door that selects that by allowing incoming air to the upper passage or the lower passage in this plenum.

Automotive tire Motor vehicle Bumper Trunk Mode of transport

It's hard to visualize this without the other mating plenum but the heated outside air is coming from straight in. The door just directs that air either up or down.

Automotive tire Audio equipment Gas Wood Composite material

This is the defrost/floor(heat) mode door servo.

Fluid Font Gas Transparency Stain

For the push on retainers I found these at McMaster.

Font Circle Fashion accessory Metal Pattern

More than you'll ever need at a reasonable price.

Automotive tire Hood Motor vehicle Bumper Automotive exterior

That's installed and adjusted. You adjust by sliding the servo on elongated mounting holes so the door goes all the way to the top of the plenum in default spring loaded position.

Blue Automotive tire Wood Gas Circle

Next is the recirculation door. I just used generic aftermarket automotive grade sealing foam.

Blue Rectangle Floor Font Gas

There's no reason to cover the entire door, the perimeter will do just fine.

White Laptop accessory Bumper Gas Automotive exterior

Bolt that one back in.

Blue Wood Gas Engineering Composite material

The recirc door servo goes in next.

Continued in next post.

1,919 Posts
Discussion Starter · #371 ·
Interior HVAC Plenum Part 5

Trigger Motor vehicle Air gun Bumper Automotive exterior

Installed and sanity checking both doors for proper operation.

Fluid Gas Bumper Audio equipment Solvent

The last door is the fresh air door. The tinermans go in first.

Gas Wood Automotive exterior Audio equipment Plumbing fixture

Input device Gas Computer keyboard Electrical wiring Wire

Unfortunately all these fresh air doors had rubber that was starting to delaminate. So I smeared some ultra black RTV around the areas where the rubber was lifting off to stop it from progressing. The rest of the rubber is extremely pliable and serviceable.

Automotive tire Bumper Automotive exterior Motor vehicle Gas

Door installed and servo attached.

Blue Gas Kitchen utensil Bumper Automotive exterior

It's not pretty, but given the unique construction of the door (vulcanized perimeter) this will do for many years to come.

Motor vehicle Naval architecture Automotive exterior Vehicle Bumper

All the doors were checked now and everything is working smoothly.
Now to prep for the steel outer ring on the plenum.

Blue Automotive tire Gas Auto part Font

The large tinnermans are installed.

Grey Asphalt Tire Automotive tire Concrete

Along with the lower shield studs.

Motor vehicle Automotive tire Bumper Automotive exterior Automotive design

Continued in next post.

1,919 Posts
Discussion Starter · #372 ·
Interior HVAC Plenum Part 6

Wood Electrical wiring Gas Audio equipment Engineering

This is the material Ford used on this originally. It's messy so I want to use it as sparingly as possible.

Motor vehicle Automotive exterior Bumper Gas Auto part

I experimented with applying this and found the small thin bead laid closest the interior was the best route.

Wood Bumper Automotive exterior Gas Machine

This too was riveted on but now I will use stainless hardware.

Motor vehicle Hood Automotive design Vehicle Bumper

After much hardware assembly.

Hood Automotive design Motor vehicle Bumper Automotive exterior

I know the gasket is piecemeal, however I chose this route for a couple of reasons. First finding a sheet of EPDM high density foam is difficult, expensive and time consuming to then cut to fit. It could take an additional 2 to 3 weeks depending on delivery, availability, labour of cutting and testing. The most important seal is the lower one as condensate from the evaporator has to run off the tray and not be allowed to leak back into the interior via down the firewall cabin side.

This is done aside from using a dremel to cut holes for the main screws in the weather stripping seals.

Motor vehicle Bumper Gas Office equipment Engineering

Motor vehicle Bumper Gas Engineering Automotive design

For something seemingly so simple it was still loads of work.

Now for those who might say why didn't I try that seal kit they are making for these rather than go this route... well......

Textile Wood Publication Book Automotive design

I did..... and guess what.... it's going back.... The main foam is the wrong density (to light) plus you have to glue this stuff on and it's not an easy 3M double sided tape. The density is also way off on the foam that butts up against the evaporator. In a nut shell this kit was close and from what I saw they did a nice job on modeling/cutting it, but still missed the mark. It is my personal opinion you will have water leaks with this kit and for 100 bucks and then having to pull this all apart again to seal it, it's not worth it at all!

That's it for this plenum. One more to go.

More to come.


22,096 Posts
Just now saw the fire photos. Pretty and pretty scary both as they can move so fast!!! I bought the new Canon R6, spendy but I'd always wanted a full frame and since they had an adaptor for my other canon lenses I went for it. I have a 600 zoom I call my sasquatch hunter. Had it a few years but on a full frame it's just 600mm, the crop one it's more like 800 maybe? But the cool thing about the new cam is I can switch it to the crop sensor mode so if i want to see further. It's like having 2 cams in one. I'd thought of other brands but besides having canon lenses, everytime i bought a dif brand point and shoot i was disappointed about some things and wanted to go back. lol

Didn't find no big foot but here's a cool pic of the wind blowing the snow on Mt Rainier.
Sky Snow Mountain Slope Ice cap

Same area but more left and windy. Still no big foots. lol
Sky Mountain Snow Plant Slope
361 - 373 of 373 Posts