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Topics - 85CougarCobra

1
Engine Tech / Front Accessory Drive Modifications
I haven't had working A/C since swapping in the 5.0 a decade plus ago ... a lot of the parts have just remained as place holders.  I decided I was going to try to clean some stuff up and overhaul all of my front accessory drive components.  So, in no particular order:

-3G alternator upgrade
-Smog pump and associated values/plumbing deleted
-A/C delete and relocation of power steering pump
-Underdrive pullies
-Polish belt tensioner and swap idler pulley
-Electric fan
-Powder coat brackets

I went to a small local car show this past Saturday and then started the tear down when I got home.  I got just about everything removed from the car.  Modified the alternator bracket and test fit the 3G.
2
Misc Tech / Electric Fan Opinions
Considering swapping to an electric fan set up.  Just wanted to get opinions on what folks have used and how happy (or unhappy) you are with it.
3
General Fox T-Bird/Cougar Discussion / Good Score
Found a Craigslist ad the other day for a guy parting out an '85 Turbo Coupe, somewhat close by, and decided to check it out.  I just missed out on getting a spare turbo front bumper, but I was able to pull almost all of the charcoal interior.  The front seats were already gone, but I took just about everything else that wasn't Tbird specific (since I have a Cougar).  I'm sure others have similar "color" problems, but '85 Charcoal is getting to be a tough interior to find (at least for me).  The color was used in '83 and '84, but those are a different overall interior from '85 up ... in '86 the color switched to the darker "Smoke" color ... close to charcoal, but definitely darker when you put two panels up against one another.  I usually run into the lighter gray for the '85 up interiors.  Anyways ... made my day to find this ... even more so at $60 for everything (ignore the exhaust in the photo and the dog's pink ape ... lol).  The dash was a bear to get out with all the wiring in a pretty optioned out car, but amazingly enough, it was un-cracked ... I'm afraid to even look at it the wrong way because I can tell it's brittle in the usual spots.
4
T-Bird/Cougar Parts & Cars WANTED / Under car parts wanted
Located in Pennsylvania and willing to make a small day trip for two items if someone has them.  Looking for an 87/88 gas tank shield/cover and then the small crossbar that runs under the rear seats and the exhaust passes through.  I have some salvage cars around here, but most are sitting on the ground and inaccessible underneath.
5
Misc Tech / Rear Underbody Resto/Gas Tank Install
Well ... the car has been out of commission for over a year now.  It wouldn't start one day and I eventually diagnosed a fuel pressure issue.  Pulled the tank to find the fuel hose inside of the tank had split and thus not allowing the system to build much/any pressure.  In classic "while I'm at it" fashion, I decided to take it further ...

Once I pulled the tank, I figured it was a good time to address some corrosion on the underside of the car.  A little history ... my parents bought the car brand new around Christmas of '84 and pretty much gave it to me when I graduated from high school in '97.  It needed some minor stuff at the time, but they gifted it to me versus trading it in on their next vehicle, and I worked on addressing the minor stuff it needed.  The "bad" thing in all of this was that we lived in northern lower Michigan at the time ... a place where winter can last months (from October to May one year while we lived there).  The car got driven in plenty of foul weather and was exposed to a lot of salty roads.  I tried to keep it clean and wash it, but there's only so much you can do when it's below freezing.  I undercoated it at least twice, but I knew I was just covering up some of the issue.

So ... with the tank out, I decided I would scrape and chisel off all of the undercoating (from the rear seats back) and wire wheel any rusty areas I came across to clean them up.  I then used the POR-15 three part process to address the rust and re-coat the underside of the car.  After all of the wire wheeling, I degreased the underside, rinsed it, then treated it with a metal prep solution that etches the metal and leaves a white residue in the diseased areas.  When that's all done, you rinse it all off again and let it dry.  These areas aren't horrible, but here's a little of what it looked like before I started the painting process:
8
Lounge / Decided to spruce up the garage a little ...
Did some painting last fall, still need to finish the ceiling and do some touch up, but decided I would try to put some "vintage" ads on display as well.  My antenna is in the way of the first one.
9
T-Bird/Cougar Parts & Cars FOR SALE / 87-88 Turbo Coupe front seat upholstery
Selling the factory front seat upholstery out of an 87-88 Turbo Coupe.  Dark blue, but has the usual fading.  Includes headrest cover, seat back cover, seat base cover, pull out knee bolster, and dark blue plastic seat belt bracket and seat back release surround and lever.  Asking $50 + shipping.  Make me an offer, I have no plans to use these and don't want to just throw them away if someone can use them.  Can provide better pics if needed, sorry, poor lighting.
10
T-Bird/Cougar Parts & Cars FOR SALE / Passenger side Corbeau seat track for sale - $25 plus shipping
Passenger side manual seat track.  Basically new, bought, installed in car, didn't care for the position/feel of the seats so pulled them back out.  I only bought the passenger side to test the fit before buying the drivers side, so this is the only one I have.  Fits Fox Tbird/Cougar and some LTD's.  I don't have any plans for it so hoping someone here might want it  instead of it collecting dust in my basement.
11
Body/Appearance/Interior / Seat upgrade ... attempt #2 ...
Ok, so after my quasi failed attempt at installing Corbeau GTS II seats in my Cougar ... it was back to the drawing board.  I was able to physically install the Corbeau seats, but just wasn't happy with my driving position.  Instead of deciding to just live with it, I pulled the seats back out, sold them, and reinstalled the '87 Mustang GT buckets I've had in the car for several years.  They're great seats, but they have always irritated me a little because they are a lighter gray than my charcoal interior and the driver's side seat suffers from the usual worn out lower leg bolster and it also has a bit of the gangster lean to it ... not my doing, it was like that when I pulled them in the junkyard.  I decided staying with a factory setup was going to ultimately get me what I wanted ... something that maintained my current driving position while keeping the seats powered vs. manual, while being able to upgrade the bolstering and materials to better match my charcoal interior.

Here are Mustang seats that have since been removed from the car and sold:
12
LEADS on T-Bird/Cougar Stuff For Sale / 88 White XR7 for sale on Craigslist
Not my car ... but I have communicated with the guy through email a little.

http://decatur.craigslist.org/cto/6207039829.html

Car would need picked up and towed, but would probably be a worthwhile project.  It's been sitting for 12+ years but ran when it was parked.  I received some additional pictures from the seller and will post them as well.  Dual power seats, two-tone Raven leather interior.  The seller told me that he bought it as a project and just never got around to working on it.  It has a few spots of paint bubbling/surface rust that he cleaned up and primed, but he said that there were no holes or severe pitting.  He said the worst spots are the trunk lid and drivers door bottom.  Will need some TLC for sure but looks like a decent project for the price ...
13
T-Bird/Cougar Parts & Cars FOR SALE / 1986 Cougar 5.0 for sale / parts - $500 - Pennsylvania
Just wanted to post this in the event someone would be interested.  I have a contact who is selling a 1986 5.0 Cougar.  I have asked him to provide me some pictures and will post them once he sends them to me.  I saw the car in person several months ago in the dark.  It is white with a light gray interior.  It has the standard base cloth interior and base electronic cluster ... no real bells and whistles outside of being a 5.0 car ... which by the way, the engine is probably no good.  The car will start, but the seller said that the engine is blown because his son forgot to put oil in it.  I also noticed that most (if not all) of the front of the car had been replaced ... fender, hood, header panel ... they were all rattle canned white.  The hood is actually a turbo coupe hood.  The car is located in the Allentown, Pennsylvania area if anyone is interested and the seller is looking to get $500 for it.  The car has some rust starting in the usual spots, but nothing that I thought was too crazy, no holes to speak of anyway.  Worst spot that I remember off hand was a spot on the rear passenger quarter panel behind the wheel at the bottom of the body.  I think the wheel wells were all relatively good and the lower door seems were not horrible either ... they were not rusted through anyway.  It would be a decent parts car if you were thinking of doing a 5.0 conversion and needed all of the associated wiring and accessories.  Let me know if you are interested and I can put you in touch with the guy.
14
Electrical Tech / Analog cluster question
I currently have the analog cluster out of my car to replace the old white face gauge overlays with a new set.  I got the new overlays installed, cleaned everything up, and then just did a quick "test" re-install last night.

Question - does anyone know (or can you confirm) that the below spiral cable on the back of the cluster is some type of heat sink?  I plugged the cluster in and turned on my lights to illuminate the gauges and double check all of my bulbs.  The lights were on for maybe a minute or so before I removed the cluster from the car again.  When I reached back in to do so, this cable was pretty darn hot ... enough to burn skin upon touch.  I just wanted to see if anyone knew if this was supposed to be that hot or if I have some type of issue brewing.  All of the bulbs are standard replacements.
15
Body/Appearance/Interior / Poll Question - Head Light Cover Thoughts
I've been recently toying with the idea of going back to the "stock" 4 eye headlight look versus my headlight covers and just wanted to get some opinions.  The car is modified and I think the headlight covers really go well with the overall appearance.  It's easy enough to use them/not use them, just need to remove the mounting tabs.  Just wanted to see what you guys think, sorry the pictures are not better, the car is currently in pieces.