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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
we got started a week or so ago on a little project. my neglected 89 Mark VII has been sittin on a pad out behind the garage almost 5 yrs, rust set in permanently(was pretty well on its way when parked). kept it running, drove it around the backyard every once in a while, but its just too rusty to put any effort into.
I told my kids I would HELP them get a car, but wasnt going to GET them one- they would have to put it together...want them to get more familiar with cars than turning a key and asking for gas money. found a SUPER clean '90 MarkVII for a few hundred bucks that they wanted outta there asap type of thing...perfect timing.
in need of air suspension(mines got new coilspring conversion)/brakes(mine are new)/fueltank/pump/sender(mine new- 700 bucks there alone), both center taillights were cracked (mine are fine) wheels severely pitted/leaking(mines sitting on centerlines)
soooo... got the brakes back together, airsprings out, doors apart(lock actuators- mine are fine), stereo out(mine works), etc...
after tearing apart/cleaning a little- the car is really even better than I thought. both front fenders have small holes in the front bottom corners where leaves collected under it, one shock tower has a little rust- but the underside looks more like a 4~5 yr old car than a >20 yr old :)
figure with a little 24" piece of tin from the hardware store and a couple hours cutting/welding the fenders will be fine, shock tower looks easy too, hoping in a couple weeks it'll be roadworthy/looking great- and when we haul the remains of my old white Mark to the 'yard, should get almost the same scrap as what his black one cost...depends how many spare parts we pull off it I guess.
gonna repaint trim-down in black and possibly reclear the whole thing, ought to be a really nice 'almost free' car. it WILL get a new throttle linkage though...half throttle is more than enough on that car I know, dont want him to be as stupid as I was at 16 with my 429 galaxie...hoping with all the elbow grease he'll have in it, maybe he'll take better care of it than most kids too.
much as I hated to even think of scrapping my old 'favorite car' (before the 06 mustang came along), think opportunity was just knocking too loudly on this one...whats the odds of finding exactly what you needed and reasonable to boot.
I'll get some pics as it comes along
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 · (Edited)
a couple pics...the poor old white one still intact, but not for long...on the black one, got the front fenders off to fix a few small rust spots, already polished the headlamps,'rusted solid' brakes are redone...
this weekend might not get to it with Easter going on, but hope to get the gastank out of the white one- if its all clean, will just install it in the other car, guessing might need to flush/etch/seal due to sitting for a few years- although the fuel in it was freshened every year, and pumps clear- we'll see...
the trunk/quarters on the black car are perfect, rockers too- a little spot above rockers at quarter joint just behind both doors (light surface rust only) will be all that needs touched up on the firewall-back part of the body- up front I do have to weld in one patch on the drivers tower- but it looks like should be pretty easy. we started patching the fenders, I'd left my argon on though months ago, now its ar-gone :)
I *think* all thats wrong with the black cars engine was the fuelpump- shot some gas in it and it fired up...if it runs OK with the clean tank/new pump, great- if not the white car has a great running engine/tranny to swap over (otherwise will keep as a spare).
My oldest has done more on it already than he's ever done in the garage to date- younger boys pitching in too- my 12 yr old did great with the MIG for the first time- till we ran out of gas.
Oldest got temps yesterday, took him out driving for about 1/2 hour today in our Marquis - he's nervous of course, but did pretty good...cant believe he's 16 already. Our 13 yr old is already looking for a ranger or two to start on for himself :)
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
oldest was 16 in march, two middles ones will be 13/14 on wednesday and thursday (same age for one day), plus we added one since the pic collage you made us of Bens car- he was 4 in January... our almost 14 yr old was the one with all the heart troubles, born on Easter Sunday '98 with no chance of survival- heck he's a wrench turning, Saxaphone playing bundle of energy now, zero heart/lung issues(but skinny as a rail). we had a rough '08, the little guy was only 7 months old and the wife had a heart attack/doublebypass/pacemaker at 36- radiation/chemo for lymphoma back in 2000 kinda screwed up her heart...but everyones healthy/dong good again for now.
Scary how fast the kids have grown though- my 16 yr old is taller than me, outweighs me by about 10 pounds too.

yeah, odds of finding a clean body in Ohio is pretty slim, letalone reasonable like this...he should wind up with a really nice car for almost nothing...only thing it HAS to have is a new set of tires, but the old old old ones on it should be ok at least to get it testdriven.
Tim
 

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I remember the wife having the heart attack and all that and the little one with big issues. But wow, doesn't seem like that long ago!!! 16??? Amazing it has been so long already!

The tires on the shotrod were really bad but good for slow test driving. They were like driving on sponges or something. AND i still have trouble with the real name! LOL Some things never change!
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
got the old(new) gas tank out of the white car- Sta-Bil ROCKS! the gas in that tank was almost 5 yrs old, other than a gallon or so added a year, tank is absolutely like new inside still... the black car had only sat a few years, tank ras rustier inside than the exhaust!
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
with the clean tank/fresh gas, the black cars engine started- sputtering like a couple dead cylinders, but running...Nick drove it around the lot fenderless just because it was mobile :)
anyway tonight as the kids stripped more off the white car, I looked over the wiring on Nicks- looking for missing/chewed up plug wires, nope. went thru the firing order, found two wires swapped- was curious as when we picked up the car, the rubber 'boot' was just laying over the distributor... thing runs GREAT! I dont think it even needs a tuneup even though it sat over 3 years
will maybe get mufflers/tails on it this weekend, then its just fixing up the rather trashed interior, mixmatching undamaged parts from the white cars interior soft aluminum trim- lots of it was scraped up in the black car by previous owners 'stereo installation', think we have all the stuff it needs, just need to swap aluminum/carpet as ones black/ones red...same aluminum bits though.
Marks have tight muffler space- replaced the white cars several times over the years, was always having issues with driveshaft rubbing- black car was same way...putting cherry-bombs on it, should have a lot more room. I ran straight 2" pipe on mine for a few years, wasnt that loud at all- 2" full pipes behind 4 cats were pretty quiet even open, but kinda 'poppy' at WOT...I'm reducing the max throttle to 30~50% before hes driving it on his own, with glasspacks it should be quiet enough not to get him in trouble, yet still have a decent rumble. wish I coulda put my spare 05 stainless mufflers on it, but way too big
 

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What a difference! If my dad used his gas tank i'd have to suggest it to him. But guess a bleach bottle wouldn't have that issue. But would be good for other areas but at one gallon at a time it would be a pain.

Being mobile means it must be mobilized! LOL Sounds like you are making some good progress and economically also with the extra car for parts. The best way for a project! Good idea on the throttle!!
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 · (Edited)
a gallon of clear urethane, a quart of black basecoat- only cost Nick 125 bucks, thanks to a buddy with a bodyshopwho hooked us up with some decent/cheap paint :) took us a total of 21 hours in prep/cleanup- we're all wore out from sanding...he's happy, I'm happy as heck- I'd never sprayed a black car before, and every little thing shows... figured on a 300 dollar car it would be ok- but it turned out way better than expected, a fair bit of dust in the paint to polish out, but it already looks way better than I woulda thought after polish :)

think hes put about 700 total in the car so far- plus a couple K in parts pulled from my poor old white Mark that I donated to the cause...I had some paint stuff to use too- love PPG K36 fast build epoxy primer, had about a pint left, use that for levelling/blocking...a lot faster than bondo.
its got a ways to go yet, but think its gonna be a heck of a nice first car. runs good, sounds good, now lookin kinda good too. I'm gonna turn up some adapters to snap the LSC stainless centercaps into the centerlines, and once we repolish the wheels and buff the paint, think its gonna look like a lot more than a 700 dollar car :)

really been fun working with the kids... although tiring :)
 

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Looks really good!! It reminds me of my first car that I bought myself. A 69 Pontiac Grand Prix. It needed some work and my dad helped me fix the things that were wrong with it and I loved that car! Drove it from the time I was 16 till I was almost 20. Its been 32 years since then. Time flys and then.......
 
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