Author Topic: Re-restoring SFM5S003  (Read 607 times)

CharlesTurner

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Re-restoring SFM5S003
« on: November 26, 2019, 12:43:20 PM »
There has been a lot of conversation/threads about 003 since this past weekend (as expected).  This post is to help better explain how things transpired over the past 18-24 months and help folks understand how we got to where we are now and plans for 2020.

003 was sold to a new owner in 2018, the new owner had the car delivered to John Brown to address some improvement areas.  John took care of many of those and it was coordinated that myself and 2 others very knowledgeable in 65 Shelby's do an overall inspection.  That inspection turned out additional items that needed to be addressed.  I was approached about taking care of those by the owner and then began discussing the when/how.  The car eventually came to my place in N. Carolina in March of this year.  It was very clear by everyone that what we were doing was for the benefit of the car and making it the best it could possibly be.  The thought was that being the first GT350, it deserved the very best treatment.

The original plan was to correct as many or all of the items on the list.  One of the big ones was to respray the engine bay, which would require significant disassembly.  It would be easy to address other items when the engine/trans were out and then everything would go back together with all the improvements addressed.  As the car came apart, some other areas became evident that needed attention.

Then, we started discussing the paint.  It had been cut/buffed to perfect glass, gorgeous paint job, but not historically correct.  The thought was that the car may have had show car treatment and polished in the SA show car department.  We went around and around on this for weeks and could not come up with any documentation to prove it.  That, added to the fact that there simply was not enough paint on these cars originally from Ford to sand/polish that well, we had no choice other than a complete re-spray.  The engine bay had to be resprayed and also the interior, the inside of the car only had red-oxide, so that needed white also.  It became evident that a total strip to bare metal was the most sensible thing to do.

We originally had  plans on taking care of the improvements and showing the car at SAAC/MCA/MCACN this year.  It was obvious that there was no way we would make SAAC/MCA with having to do a total strip/re-spray.  We then thought that maybe we could still make MCACN in November.  Still very aggressive, but possibly do-able.  We talked to a couple shop owners about body/paint and were lucky to have Jason Billups agree to our tight timeline.  We agreed that Jason would shoot for having the car done by early September.  During that time, parts re-restoration/staging would take place and everything would hopefully come together for MCACN.  003 arrived at Jason's shop in Oklahoma in early June.

Not long after 003 arrived at Jason's shop, I found a San Jose coupe with a scheduled build date 12 days before 003.  We bought the car and had it delivered to Jason's shop as there were some body panels that he was asking if we had better ones (fenders, front die-cast pieces).  All the parts from the coupe were perfect and date correct, so Jason ended up using the fenders from that car.  The fenders that were on 003 previously were not original either, so this was a nice additional improvement that we didn't have on the original list.  Jason finished 003 in September and it was delivered to my place on September 26th.

We knew when the car went to Jason's that making MCACN was going to be a significant effort.  While we originally set out to have it there in it's original GT350 prototype configuration, the thought of taking it there as the Mustang build came up.  Since we weren't doing the 3 big shows in 2019 and only MCACN, we thought it would be a unique opportunity to show it at MCACN as San Jose built it and as it would have been delivered to Shelby American in 1964.  This decision was actually the only reason the car was able to make it to MCACN.  There simply was not enough time to do the regular Mustang restoration and also the Shelby modifications.  Some may say it was a waste of time and money, but it actually was easier to do it this way first. 

Mark H had planned at some point to have a display of Mustang take-off parts and when the car was sold, the parts he had acquired went with the car.  Specifically, a date correct 4V cast iron intake, hipo 4100 carb and a few other items.  The parts coupe had some of the other pieces missing and they were in great shape, so it wasn't terribly difficult to fill in the missing pieces.  The current owner plans to follow through on Mark's original vision and have some type of display with all the 'take-off' parts.

Some may be scratching their heads on the fender emblems.  We know that the first 3 cars had fender emblems and that a call was made to the San Jose plant manager asking if those could be left off of subsequent orders, which they agreed.  002 had it's original fenders and the original, filled holes could be seen on the back side.  While this is one area that could be seen as unnecessary, we wanted to do the conversion as historically accurate as possible.  Maybe if we had the original fenders from 003, we would have maybe done magnets or tape to attach the emblems and not disturb the original holes, but we didn't.  The only way to do this correct is to braze the holes and then re-spray the bottom of the fenders.  We plan to do this later when doing the GT350 conversion.

As far as other 'waste', the exhaust was something I had on-hand and was actually already slated for another car, so the current 003 owner did not have to spend anything on that.  Otherwise, there wasn't that much more expense... NOS steering wheel/horn ring, shocks, used 13/16" sway bar, emblems, oil pan (from the coupe), chrome valve covers (from coupe that were chromed).  Yes, it will be a little more labor to remove the parts, but we think it was worth it to show the car in the San Jose configuration and educate folks on what a GT350 looked like before the conversion was done.

Going forward, the plan is to do the GT350 conversion this coming Spring, probably April or May.  This will be done at the owner's facility in Florida.  We are hoping to involve ex-Shelby American employees and relive a unique part of history.  It's our hope to do extensive photo  and also film documentation.  We have been discussing a film documentary, but still in the early stages of that.  We plan to show the car at the SAAC convention at Indy and have it judged in Div 1.  Then the MCA Grand National in Florida in Thoroughbred and then back to MCACN for Pinnacle judging again.  We want there to be no doubt as to the level of the re-restoration.

Please understand that the only motivation for the recent efforts were to make the car the best it could possibly be.  The owner is passionate about his cars and we share the same sentiment that the most important thing is for the benefit of the car.  We have deep respect/admiration for Mark Hovander and those previously involved with 003 and hope that over time they will appreciate what has been done.

Hope this sheds some light on the sequence of events over the past year.  We had an overwhelmingly positive response at MCACN and believe that when others see the car next year, they will better understand the path taken to make the car the best it can be.


« Last Edit: November 26, 2019, 07:21:19 PM by CharlesTurner »
Charles Turner
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Re: Re-restoring SFM5S003
« Reply #1 on: November 26, 2019, 01:26:20 PM »
Excellent Charles, Well worded information.

Looking forward to the next stage.

 :)

chris NOS

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Re: Re-restoring SFM5S003
« Reply #2 on: November 26, 2019, 01:43:47 PM »
Charles I want to thank you for your time to explain the whole thing here ,i really feel the dedication to the car , to get it as best as you can , i hope i'll see it  one day , please keep SAAC inform , i m pretty sure a lot of guys here will appreciate ! thank you again .
Chris

Drew Pojedinec

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Re: Re-restoring SFM5S003
« Reply #3 on: November 26, 2019, 02:13:35 PM »
I give you and all involved a ton of credit, doing it right is an insane amount of work.
Hope the rest goes well without too many snags.

GT350Lad

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Re: Re-restoring SFM5S003
« Reply #4 on: November 26, 2019, 04:58:49 PM »
Thanks Charles. What an undertaking. Keen to see the next stage and keep us posted.

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Re: Re-restoring SFM5S003
« Reply #5 on: November 26, 2019, 06:38:48 PM »
Although no explanation was needed, thank you for the explanation of the path taken.

There has been a lot of conversation/threads about 003 since this past weekend (as expected).  This post is to help better explain how things transpired over the past 18-24 months and help folks understand how we got to where we are now and plans for 2020.

003 was sold to a new owner in 2018, the new owner had the car delivered to John Brown to address some improvement areas.  John took care of many of those and it was coordinated that myself and 2 others very knowledgeable in 65 Shelby's do an overall inspection.  That inspection turned out additional items that needed to be addressed.  I was approached about taking care of those by the owner and then began discussing the when/how.  The car eventually came to my place in N. Carolina in March of this year.  It was very clear by everyone that what we were doing was for the benefit of the car and making it the best it could possibly be.  The thought was that being the first GT350, it deserved the very best treatment.

The original plan was to correct as many or all of the items on the list.  One of the big ones was to respray the engine bay, which would require significant disassembly.  It would be easy to address other items when the engine/trans were out and then everything would go back together with all the improvements addressed.  As the car came apart, some other areas became evident that needed attention.

Then, we started discussing the paint.  It had been cut/buffed to perfect glass, gorgeous paint job, but not historically correct.  The thought was that the car may have had show car treatment and polished in the SA show car department.  We went around and around on this for weeks and could not come up with any documentation to prove it.  That, added to the fact that there simply was not enough paint on these cars originally from Ford to sand/polish that well, we had no choice other than a complete re-spray.  The engine bay had to be resprayed and also the interior, the inside of the car only had red-oxide, so that needed white also.  It became evident that a total strip to bare metal was the most sensible thing to do.

We originally had  plans on taking care of the improvements and showing the car at SAAC/MCA/MCACN this year.  It was obvious that there was no way we would make SAAC/MCA with having to do a total strip/re-spray.  We then thought that maybe we could still make MCACN in November.  Still very aggressive, but possibly do-able.  We talked to a couple shop owners about body/paint and were lucky to have Jason Billups agree to our tight timeline.  We agreed that Jason would shoot for having the car done by early September.  During that time, parts re-restoration/staging would take place and everything would hopefully come together for MCACN.  003 arrived at Jason's shop in Oklahoma in early June.

Not long after 003 arrived at Jason's shop, I found a San Jose coupe with a scheduled build date 12 days before 003.  We bought the car and had it delivered to Jason's shop as there were some body panels that he was asking if we had better ones (fenders, front die-cast pieces).  All the parts from the coupe were perfect and date correct, so Jason ended up using the fenders from that car.  The fenders that were on 003 previously were not original either, so this was a nice additional improvement that we didn't have on the original list.  Jason finished 003 in September and it was delivered to my place on September 26th.

We knew when the car went to Jason's that making MCACN was going to be a significant effort.  While we originally set out to have it there in it's original GT350 prototype configuration, the thought of taking it there as the Mustang build came up.  Since we weren't doing the 3 big shows in 2019 and only MCACN, we thought it would be a unique opportunity to show it at MCACN as San Jose built it and as it would have been delivered to Shelby American in 1964.  This decision was actually the only reason the car was able to make it to MCACN.  There simply was not enough time to do the regular Mustang restoration and also the Shelby modifications.  Some may say it was a waste of time and money, but it actually was easier to do it this way first. 

Mark H had planned at some point to have a display of Mustang take-off parts and when the car was sold, the parts he had acquired went with the car.  Specifically, a date correct 4V cast iron intake, hipo 4100 carb and a few other items.  The parts coupe had some of the other pieces missing and they were in great shape, so it wasn't terribly difficult to fill in the missing pieces.  The current owner plans to follow through on Mark's original vision and have some type of display with all the 'take-off' parts.

Some may be scratching their heads on the fender emblems.  We know that the first 3 cars had fender emblems and that a call was made to the San Jose plant manager asking if those could be left off of subsequent orders, which they agreed.  002 had it's original fenders and the original, filled holes could be seen on the back side.  While this is one area that could be seen as unnecessary, we wanted to do the conversion as historically accurate as possible.  Maybe if we had the original fenders from 003, we would have maybe done magnets or tape to attach the emblems an not disturb the original holes, but we didn't.  The only way to do this correct is to braze the holes and then re-spray the bottom of the fenders.  We plan to do this later when doing the GT350 conversion.

As far as other 'waste', the exhaust was something I had on-hand and was actually already slated for another car, so the current 003 owner did not have to spend anything on that.  Otherwise, there wasn't that much more expense... NOS steering wheel/horn ring, shocks, used 13/16" sway bar, emblems, oil pan (from the coupe), chrome valve covers (from coupe that were chromed).  Yes, it will be a little more labor to remove the parts, but we think it was worth it to show the car in the San Jose configuration and educate folks on what a GT350 looked before the conversion was done.

Going forward, the plan is to do the GT350 conversion this coming Spring, probably April or May.  This will be done at the owner's facility in Florida.  We are hoping to involve ex-Shelby American employees and relive a unique part of history.  It's our hope to do extensive photo  and also film documentation.  We have been discussing a film documentary, but still in the early stages of that.  We plan to show the car at the SAAC convention at Indy and have it judged in Div 1.  Then the MCA Grand National in Florida in Thoroughbred and then back to MCACN for Pinnacle judging again.  We want there to be no doubt as to the level of the re-restoration.

Please understand that the only motivation for the recent efforts were to make the car the best it could possibly be.  The owner is passionate about his cars and we share the same sentiment that the most important thing is for the benefit of the car.  We have deep respect/admiration for Mark Hovander and those previously involved with 003 and hope that over time they will appreciate what has been done.

Hope this sheds some light on the sequence of events over the past year.  We had an overwhelmingly positive response at MCACN and believe that when others see the car next year, they will better understand the path taken to make the car the best it can be.
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Dkutz

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Re: Re-restoring SFM5S003
« Reply #6 on: November 26, 2019, 08:53:15 PM »
Wow, what a lot of work. Glad it will be done right