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Old 05-25-2004, 12:53 AM
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first post - IFS or rebuild stock?

I have been debating this issue for a year now. I have a 64 ½ mustang that is in need of a suspension overhaul. Its old, stock, and since I am rebuilding the car anyway – why not make it nice. I am planning on installing a performance 302 in the bay, and am not concerned with originality at all. Here is the dilemma:

Firstly, I would like the car to have modern benefits: eliminate bump steer, remove steering box and go with a power rack and pinion setup, perform a 2 inch drop, allow for better handling, have disc brakes, and overall greatly increase how I enjoy the car.

I plan on driving the car everyday. It will be a toy; yet will never see the tracks. I want “track-worthy” performance though, yet be able to drive comfortably and enjoy it.

My options are the following: purchase a stock rebuild kit from mustangsplus, upgrade the stock suspension by adding performance geared parts such as global west, TCP, and flaming river, OR purchase the all in one rod and custom IFS kit.

In the mustang world, the IFS kit is shunned upon – and this is why I am here today – since yall use this all the time, is it what I really want?

I mean the savings are incredible, there is NO WAY I could come anywhere close to the price of the R&C, heidts, or fatman packages than utilizing the shock towers, rebuilding the suspension, and purchasing the rack and pinion, tilt column, disc brakes, etc separately.

Yes, I understand that a lot of hacking away is required, and that I will never be able to return my car to stock condition, but I don’t care. I want something that will perform like global west, and TCP – yet will I find it in these parts? I know these are not “performance parts”, so would it be best to just buy the 1000 dollar kit and keep the technology in the 60s?

Any suggestions and comments would be greatly appreciated.

Thanks in advance
-andrew

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Old 05-25-2004, 02:36 AM
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This FAQ from -DVS Restorations-

Quote:
Q. - You list three choices on front suspension - original, Mustang II and Macpherson Strut. What is the best one to use?


A. - It really depends on what you want. All three have their advantages and drawbacks. Here's my personal opinion, this and five bucks will get you a cup of coffee at a trendy coffee shop.

Original Ford Suspension

Advantages:

1. Lower cost - use what's already there.

2. This suspension was designed with the original Mustang frame weight.

3. Fairly easy to do.

Disadvantages

1. Wasn't a fabulously great design 40 years ago.

2. Requires modification and fabrication to the shock towers.

3. You need to convert to a front sump oiling system to clear the suspension components.

4. Potential heating issues with steering gear and exhaust.


Mustang II

Advantages

1. Very small and compact.

2. With no shock towers there is TONS of room.

3. Readily available parts from the street rod world, and kits specially designed for Mustang are available now.

Disadvantages

1. 30 year old technology (the first Pinto debuted in 1970).

2. Higher cost (2-3k range).

3. It's great for street rods that cruise around parks, but we're talking serious horsepower mated to a much bigger chassis. Do you really want to put 320 horses on a system designed for V6 Pintos?

4. Major fabrication as you need to remove the shock towers and welding is involved. Not for the novice to attempt.


Mac Struts

Advantages

1. Latest technology available.

2. Designed to handle the Cobra motor and drivetrain.

3. A majority of the engineering efforts are going for this platform, not the 60's platform.

4. Tons of aftermarket support.

5. Though not nearly as much room as the Mustang II option, allows for more room for the big motors.

6. It's overkill - I like that.

Disadvantages

1. Very expensive (5k and up range).

2. Major fabrication job - expert builders only range. Requires custom built sheet metal parts and major modification to the existing frame.

So the choice comes down to what do you really want and what can your wallet handle.
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Old 05-25-2004, 06:06 AM
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In my opinion there is no reason to "hack up" your car for a good handling suspension system. All it will take is the selection of some Shelby Mustang components and it will handle better than 99% of the aftermarket IFS systems you can find today. It'll be way less expensive as well.

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Old 05-25-2004, 06:27 AM
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Thumbs up

It's really difficult to tell or advise a person how to modify their car. I usually just post the acceptable methods and let the person go from there.

I agree that the stock suspension is more than adequate for the car (with modifications). The trouble comes from the steering system employed, especially power steering. The system sucks. It sucked on '57 FORDS and it sucked on the intermediates.

Having found an acceptable means of installing a rear steer R&P (on another post), it answers the shortcomings of the old steering box and power assist nightmare FORD bought from GM.
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Old 05-25-2004, 07:12 AM
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Quote:
Originally posted by KULTULZ
It's really difficult to tell or advise a person how to modify their car. I usually just post the acceptable methods and let the person go from there.
I agree but rhurley said he wanted “track-worthy” performance and it's been my experience that almost all aftermarket IFS systems are adaptations existing production type systems and will not necessarily give "track worthy" performance.

Of course you can get a nice ride from these systems but when you factor in cost of components, amount of fabrication involved and what the person said he wanted, it just seems to me that the addition of some selected Shelby components would be a LOT easier in time, work and on his pocket book.

But like you said, he needs to decide what he ultimately wants to do.

Centerline
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Old 05-25-2004, 11:36 AM
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Firstly, thank you for taking the time to post your comments. I just wanted to clarify some issues:

The Rod and Custom kit contains the following for $2000 complete:

1. rack and pinion setup ($1200 from flaming river)
2. disc brakes and large rotors ($600 on a good day)
3. brand new tubular A and lower control arms ($900 from GW)
4. gas shocks and springs ($100)
5. new strut rods, adjustable ($200 from a good dealer)
6. replaces my damaged shock towers ($200 plus fab time)
7. motor mounts ($100)
8. one inch sway bar, joints, and acc. ($100)

When I add all this up, I get a figure around $3400 dollars for the setup I would "love" to have (stock rebuild).

It just seemed to me that I would save alot of money, and get all the parts I wanted in one, nicely packaged, economical choice.

Would the IFS kit preform less than a good stock rebuild, and if so, is that decrease in quality worth the 1400 dollar savings?

It just seemed to me that it WOULD handle slightly better than a stock rebuild, and well hey - since it saves me 1400 along the way, it must be the best choice.

That was my logic throughout this. Now, after eliminating the cost issue, I want to tacle the preformance quotes.

The IFS kit that I picked out is designed for mustangs, just I would hope the engineering behind the kit's philosophy would take into the account of the weight, unibody, and structure of the car itself. It removes alot of the "primitive" features of the mustang - such as the steering box with universal joints, the shock towers, drum/single resovour braking system, and upgrades many components to what I would consider modern technology (tubular arms, coilovers, larger rotors and dual pistoned equpited calipers).

The IFS kit I picked out also requires little fabrication. Just a small notch must be removed in the frame, and then the fully assembled crossmember is welded in place.

I understand many of the typically issues and concerns people have concerning the change-over. What I would really like to know is - can this suspension really handle a daily driver? Can the suspension take a heavy 302, and keep up with some rough and wild driving?

I know for a fact that IF i rebuild to stock, and use alot of preformance parts, I will have the quality I desire. I know this, been in the cars, and loved it. But they require over 50% more pocket book - and I am just looking for a way around the cash issue and hope to land on my desired quality.

I am willing to take the extra fabrication time (i mean, its the real reason I have the car - i love projects), to save myself a NICE AOD.

Thanks again
-andrew
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Old 05-25-2004, 04:16 PM
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Oh, decisons, decisons, eh Andrew?
Take your time and think things through. Then whatever you decide is oakely-doakley!
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Old 05-25-2004, 06:00 PM
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I don't biuld cars to sell. I do consider the sellability of a car with changes that I want to do. Very few people build a car and keep it until they or the car die. That being the case, I don't want to make changes to a car that would make it extremely difficult to sell later. People always complain about how they loose so much money when they sell their car, after they put all of that money and work into it. You can put the larger disc brakes on it, and feel beter about the stopping, without much of a problem at selling time. You can also make subtle changes with the modifications of using Shelby handling parts, and have better handling without hurting the sellability. When you make huge changes like you are considering, it may make it difficult, at best, to sell it later.

Just my thoughts. Do what ever you want, but think of the consequences.
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Old 05-26-2004, 06:31 PM
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We have built all of one 66 Mustang that is a 97+% original. We started with a low mileage (68,000) convertible that had been disassembled for the purpose of a 100 point restoration when the previous owner found one complete. We bought the boxes of parts, sheet metal etc and built it back to a beautiful rag top. The non original mods were the Granada disc brake mod and a bunch of repro parts. The weak sisters have been mentioned above. The power steering (all rebuilt/reproduced parts) certainly is not worth the expense. We would have gone with Fatmans bolt in set up for rack and pinion and struts, but it was not completed at the time we needed to move on. We most probably go back and install it at a later date. I personally consider the front end of these old Mustangs wimpy and without putting a real frame under it, will never be a safe, hard driving vehicle. But what a great looking ride and fun to cruise around in!!! I'll try to post a couple of pics in my album

Trees
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Old 05-26-2004, 08:30 PM
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amazingly enough


http://cgi.ebay.com/ebaymotors/ws/eB...903030182&rd=1
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