Hi guys,
I'm just getting started on my Pantera restoration, and thought I'd introduce myself. I have had my car since 2008, when I picked it up in it's current state/condition. It has been waiting patiently ever since. At the time I bought it, I was in the first stages of an RCR GT40 build, then a custom 69 Mustang Mach...then a...then a... long story short, it's finally time for the cat to get her attention. To date, the only mileage I have put on the car is a half mile at a time for runs around the block to keep all the goodies lubed. So, I'm really looking forward to getting to finally drive her after completion.

Here she is at arrival in my driveway in 2008. Delta wing was the first step in the process..I removed in on day two (long since sold ;-).


A few weeks ago we rolled her into the shop and got the ball rolling...






We power washed the engine bay and were quite pleased with the general condition. Really no rust issues to speak of (yahooooo).




Today I pulled the rear suspension and fuel tank before the family woke up. Getting ready to head to Germany for the week, so unfortunately I'm done for the day. But, before I left...thought I'd start a post to say "Hi" and introduce myself. Big Grin

Thanks,
Original Post
Hi guys,
Thanks for the warm welcome.
Yes, I truly appreciate the fact that my younger daughter enjoys my car hobby as much as she does. I love spending the time with her.

I got back from Germany last night and am heading out to the garage now. Hoping to keep the momentum ;-)
OK, so managed to get about 5 hours in on Sat and another 5 on Sunday. Made some good headway, resulting in a lot of parts now on the floor. The bad news....I broke the original windshield pulling it out. Damn..damn...damn... Mad I was pulling it like I have so many others, by flipping the lip back while someone applies steady pressure, but the gasket was being stubborn. I should have stopped and cut the gasket, but instead I asked my daughter to push a little harder. Those dance legs of hers are a bit stronger than anticipated. Really a shame as it was in nice shape. Anyone have a windshield....??

Anyway...once I stopped crying I got back to it. The interior is now just about gutted, and the front trunk/radiator area are stripped. I think the toughest part of the job so far was pulling the wire harness. The casing was about as flexible as petrified wood. I think I'll have to cut it all off and tape wrap when it's time for reassembly. At this point, all that's left is the front suspension, headliner, and door window mechanisms.






Hopefully will be fully disassembled and heading for media blasting next Sat.

Can anyone give guidance on how to get the side windows and mechanisms apart. I was looking them over and don't see an obvious method. Thanks...
Perhaps you can be more specific. Based on what you have accomplished, it would seem that you have the acumen to extract the main side window apparatus. Glass removal is two nuts and rubber protected bolts and it pulls up and exit the rail toward the inside of the car. Start with it 3/4 down. Pretty easy.

The front side windows are held in by the vertical trim that is removable after finding the screw, in the upper door trim behind the seal, that holds that piece of trim in place. The fastener is right behind where the vertical trim meets the upper horizontal trim. With the trim gone, slide the 1/4 window back and out.

The question that you should be asking is "Do I remove the trim?" I have removed the trim on every restoration except the last when it was attached so tightly, it was on the threshold of damaging it in removal. I managed on piece off and it had a minor warp after the exercise. That scared me. I surrendered and left the remaining trim in place. Fortunately, the piece I removed went back on looking perfect. But, the experience gave me religion.

Kirk Evans informed me that he never removes the trim. I never appreciated that until now.

Let me know if I missed your question

John Taphorn
HI guys,
Thanks for the info. I'll poke at it a little more. My reason for wanting to remove the trim is that I am bringing the chassis in for media blasting. I was considering leaving the trim on and protecting with duct tape, but that just feels wrong. I feel like to "do it right" it needs to be fully disassembled. Am I being too anal?

One big question I have... is about Ron's avatar.... That's a funny lookin Pantera man. Is that a left over pic from some other forum...just spit ballin of course... Big Grin roll on floor
Rob, my preference is to remove the trim as well. I suppose that I should have qualified my previous remarks. All the trim attached to the chassis comes off very easy as it is attached by rivets. Also, the lower door outside window trim adjacent to the door skin is a definite removal as it is held on by screws that also hold the cat wiskers.

The challenging trim surrounds the rest of the door window frame and is pressed on both the
inside and outside. This is the delicate stuff that can be stretched and damaged when removing it.

As I mentioned before, my experiences, prior to last, was that I was able to carefully work it off w/o issue. Frankly, others had told me what a bear it is to remove and that had never been my experience. That is until my last project - it did not want to come off. I ended up taping it over. It would present a problem if your intention is to powder coat them. Then, I have my fingers crossed that the pressed on door trim removes easily. Let us know how it works out.
Rob; This is Pantera 3639 where we have both posted our vehicles in the tear down/rebuild stages. I, too, wanted to remove the window trim; however, as you will notice in my picture of "ready for paint" the windows are taped over with tape and cardboard for the very reason JTpantera points out - the trim is press fitted and the experienced fabrication shop doing the work on my car forewarned me that more damage could be done attempting to take the trim off vs. cutting a fine line where the trim meets the paint. Therefore, the trim remains intact. The car was bead blasted with the doors off and double taped, being careful not to "blast" the window trim area. Everything seems to be OK.
Hi guys,
Thanks for the insights. I was looking it over and considering the windshield "incident", simply decided not to make my life more difficult just for the principle of wanting to "fully" disassemble the car. The car is so rust free, that I'm really not worried about any hidden nastiness lurking under the trim.

On Friday night I finished the dis assembly. Sat morning I dropped it off at the media blaster. I should be picking it up this coming Sat morning. I'll post pics when I pick her up.

Thanks again for the help.
Hi guys,
Quick status update...
Picked the car up from the media blaster. Very pleased with the job and not too much ugly uncovered. Did find some light body damage left front corner and some corrosion at the radiator support (known) and lower rear corners of door jams. They will need some surgery to get them right, as the previous repair work was beyond crappy.

Decided to build a temporary wall in the shop to keep the heat, dust, paint stink in the shop. Seems to work great so far...we'll see if I can make it through the winter w/o poking a hole in it while moving stuff around... Big Grin



















First task now is to get the chassis cleaned up. I've spent about 4 hours so far trying to get the insides of the frame sections cleaned out. I've collected about 3 gallons of media in the shop vac so far.
Hi Rob,

Car looks good---congrats! If you need any tec support or restoration suggestions, feel free to drop me a note off line to my amerisport@gmail.com account or call. I have a fair amount of hands on experience and pass it on when needed. Also have many small bits and pieces if you're looking for original parts and I'm fairly close in NW Ohio. Good luck.

Kirk Evans --- AmeriSport ---

http://amerisportindustries.com/
Hi guys,
Sorry...was off the grid for a bit...up north skiing with the family. Enough of that family stuff... Big Grin .... back to the garage...

Yep, I'm quite pleased with the condition of the chassis. I have a small hand full areas of corrosion and two spots of damage to repair. I consider myself very lucky. I haven't yet determined repair methods for all yet, but I'll show what I do. The lower radiator support will likely get cut out and replaced. The other areas I will likely cut out the rust and fabricate patches to weld in place...let's see.

My garage has proven to be very functional. It's my third, so really put a lot of planning into it with lessons learned from the previous. I've restored/built quite a few cars in there over the past decade and can really say I'm quite pleased with it. Only a few things I'd change... for example I didn't plan any venting of the area...this was a BIG mistake. I'm considering the plastic wall a trial...If I really like it, I may built a real one to close off the shop.

I love having my girls work in the shop with me. Frankly...it slows me down A LOT, but it's totally worth it. My older daughter isn't really interested. She'll drop in every now and again. The younger one really seems to appreciate cars and likes working on them. So...luvin that! Not so sure about her taking it to school.... however she has "claimed" it as hers. In her words "when you get old and decrepit...it's mine" Smiler She always reminds me..I didn't say when you're dead..I'm not waiting that long... She's a real character!

Thanks for the offer Kirk, actually thanks to all you guys for your insights. Greatly appreciated.

Heading out to the shop. Let's see what I can get done this afternoon.....
quote:
I love having my girls work in the shop with me. Frankly...it slows me down A LOT, but it's totally worth it. My older daughter isn't really interested. She'll drop in every now and again. The younger one really seems to appreciate cars and likes working on them. So...luvin that! Not so sure about her taking it to school.... however she has "claimed" it as hers. In her words "when you get old and decrepit...it's mine" She always reminds me..I didn't say when you're dead..I'm not waiting that long... She's a real character!

Right on Rob! That's totally awesome! Surprisingly, of my 3 kids it's my youngest daughter who has taken the most interest in cars. My 66 Mustang (GT350 clone) was laid up on jackstands for 11 years and she kept telling me I had better get to work on "her" car. I told her if she helped me turn a few wrenches, she might get to drive it occasionally. We completed the mechanical restoration and got it back on the road and she loves driving it (occasionally). She wanted to learn how to do a burn out, so I took her to a nice large parking lot with no light posts or planter boxes and taught her how to properly do a burnout without breaking or abusing the car. Had her do a few donuts too! She had a perma-grin the rest of the evening. She also got to drive my Pantera the first day I got it back on the road after a 5 year engine rebuild - more big grins!

Anyway, great progress, and keep those girls busy in the garage.
OK, so got to spend a few hours in the shop yesterday. First task was to get her up on some teeny jack stands, so I can work more easily on the underside. In a total brain fart....I built the wall with the portable hoist on the wrong side of the wall. Doh..!!! So, had to string her up from the ceiling.





So, started looking hard at all the ugly areas, and determined the only way to really know was to dig in...found quite a bit of really ugly underneath.












There are many areas of the frame that are damaged. Looks like the car was pulled from ditches a few times.... Many frame holes are torn open or damaged. The one under the passenger seat is absolutely shredded.

I'm gonna cut this section out and fabricate a new section.

The parking brake reaction bracket appears to have come loose from the frame at some point, and has been cobbled back on. Unfortunately, I can't tell what angle this is supposed to be mounted at. Does anyone have access to a clean photo of theirs so I can reference what angle this bracket should at? It would be greatly appreciated.


Tomorrow I'll sand blast inside the rockers and see what I come up with....
Chris is correct- that was a factory mod after Ford pulled out. The sump drops down, then moves forward about a foot for removal and the brake is in the way as is the crossmember. There's a decent illustration of the removable factory parts in the black factory illustrated parts manual, or you can easily make your current bracket removeable by welding an angle iron to it and screwing the angle to the frame so the assembly is horizontal and approx. level with the subframe.
The crossmember is more complicated to convert but is actually held in by the front lower a-arm attach nuts. I made one from scratch- it looked easier than modding the stock crossmember.
I'm not surprised on the rust. These cars were just driven new.

Seemingly all European cars of the era had little or no consideration for protecting the tub for anything really past 5 years. Porsche is included in that list.

Anti-corrosion ideas in my opinion are actually something coming out of US cars. Laugh at that if you want to.

Japanese cars are also incredible rust buckets as well from the times.

The Japanese ironically called the solution, the "not invented here" solution.

What they mean by that is that eventually they accepted the idea that they would have to use others ideas and proven procedures even though they did not invent it. WITHOUT CONSCIOUS of stealing the idea.


We here in the US for a long time felt that the Japanese success was because they took our ideas, stole them as it were, and improved and applied them to their products.

All of the Europeans positively refused to do that. Ever try telling the Italians, or any other European what or how it should be done?

You shouldn't if you value your physical well being, your families safety or a general tar and feathering. I guess that's an American thing though? Maybe being pelted with empty Cinzano wine bottles filled with gasolene? LOL!

That I used to see from the "University students" on the "left bank" in Paris around 1970. The US Embassy was often a target of that, but I digress.


Looking at Detomaso cars. He actually really tried really hard to protect these things with about a hundred pounds of tar based undercoating. Unfortunately the concept of vat dipping the tub in electrostatic primer never caught on there at all. It is what it is though.


I personally have found that it is best to leave the windshield in place.

They are really touchy and crack very easily.

There are actually aftermarket windshields available here in the US, or at least recently were, by two different glass companies, cheap.

Try $275 each.

Problem is 1) they are aftermarket glass 2) they are thinner than the originals.

LAST time I looked, originals were about $1,200 each new. That was a while ago. I'm afraid to look now.

In an perfect Universe it would be best to remove the glass, strip off all of the paint and reprime, reseal and repaint.

In reality, you can leave it in place and run the new paint right up to the gasket and have it virtually undetectable.


When working on any of these cars it is difficult to know when to end your own personal degree of perfectionism and just learn to compromise?

In my case I have often found out this can be the cause of why what was supposed to be a 10 day project turned into three months or more.

I've been doing this stuff for over 40 years and you would have thought I would have learned better by now? That can't be considered a personality attribute on me? Roll Eyes


It's like worrying about your own personal possible medical issues, or developing them. You have to stop the paranoia for something that you can't control and just deal with everything the best you can when it is staring you in the face.

As James Bond was quoted, "you only live twice. Once when you are born, and once when you stare death in the face". (<...and survive it I presume?)


Maybe for me looking at rust and/or seriously twisted metal is the same thing? People like Johnny Woods are offering new injections of faith and hope? Wink


Best of luck on your project...and keeping it away from your daughter who is already claiming it as her's! roll on floor
Rob; Enclosing picture of my rear tub area and brake bracket. JAG13CAT here, #3639 restoration.
Envious of your work area.
Appears, like mine, bead blasting revealed more than what was expected.
Your post to me was we are near the same in the restoration process. With your aggressive approach, I'll still be afoot admiring your finished product. KEEP UP THE GOOD WORK - Enjoying the progress pics. Unfortunately, I'm stalled momentarily.
quote:
Originally posted by Bosswrench:
Chris is correct- that was a factory mod after Ford pulled out. The sump drops down, then moves forward about a foot for removal and the brake is in the way as is the crossmember. There's a decent illustration of the removable factory parts in the black factory illustrated parts manual, or you can easily make your current bracket removeable by welding an angle iron to it and screwing the angle to the frame so the assembly is horizontal and approx. level with the subframe.
The crossmember is more complicated to convert but is actually held in by the front lower a-arm attach nuts. I made one from scratch- it looked easier than modding the stock crossmember.


Have never seen a picture of that with the drive line out of the car. Anyone have one that they can post?
Hi Guys,
Thanks a lot for the pics and feedback. Very helpful. Now..one big question...based on the comments about sump removal...to be clear, are we talking about the oil pan, or some aftermarket deep sump something or another? If I can't get the oil pan off w/o lifting the engine...I might just consider such modifications.

OK, so hit the shop early this morning...knocked out the frame section replacement.











I'm pleased with outcome, other than a couple of the "spot welds" don't look like spot welds... I had the wire feed up a bit too high at first. I slowly dialed it back until I got the right rate. I was concerned not to bring it back too fast and burn through the floor.

Next project will be likely be removing a rocker panel...
Beautiful sheet metal work, Rob. I'm impressed by your progress. Yes- we're talking about oil pan access- the first of two access problems in a stock Pantera is the complete inability to remove the oil pan without raising it up a foot or two; most pull the engine/ZF. Rookie mechanics that assemble a 351-C engine for the first time sometimes install the oil pump driveshaft with the limiting star-washer missing or improperly positioned. Then someone else pulls the distributor, which lifts the little driveshaft up. Then it drops into the pan. And you cannot retrieve or reinstall it correctly without pulling the engine because the pan cannot be removed.

The other is, the fuel tank cannot practically be removed without pulling the engine. Moisture-holding crud builds up behind the tank, causing rust and sometimes structural damage.
Thanks, appreciated.
Hmm...interesting tid bits. I'll consider during assembly. I'm struggling with which/what mods to make, as I want to car to present as OE config.

OK, so decided to tackle the rear cross member next rather than the rocker, as I want to hit all the items that need the car so high in the air first.

Drilled out the spot welds and removed the badly bent bottom metal.



Straightened the structure...



Was talking with Kirk Evans last weekend and he mentioned the idea of incorporating jacking points into the car, I thought this sounded like a great idea since it doesn't really seem there are good locations to safely jack (i.e. w/o damaging sheet metal). So, while doing the straightening work, I came up with the idea to fill the rear cross member with plate steel with a split pipe for structure inside of the sheet metal. The idea is that the modification would be absolutely invisible (OE appearing) and would provide a rock solid jacking point. Here is the piece I created..



Here it is sitting in place (held up in place by the interference fitment).


Welding started. I will grind the welds clean and flush when done, then make a new bottom sheet metal section to finish it off. Thanks for the thought Kirk..great idea.
Rob love the solution for the rear support below the ZF...I did something very similar, but actually laid a 3/8" section of plate all the way across and it actually crossed over the frame section running the length of the car. Your idea of the half round tube welded to the underside of the plate is pretty sneaky to strengthen the plate!!!

I noticed there are heat marks around the sway bar mounting studs. Did you do anything to those? I cut the bottom of the mount channel off and slid a 1/4" piece of plating up inside that frame area and it is threaded where the two old bolts were...that way you can thread in new higher quality studs for the sway bars.

Also for the emergency brake, you can cut the old one off and there is a bolt on bracket that I purchased from one of the vendors that I'm sure you can make with your skills. It spans between the two frame rails and fits flush to the frame with the brake cables running on top. I'll try and find you a picture and post it.

While you are at the rear sway bar mounts on the rear A-arms tend to flex and bend...so I added a piece of 1/4" steel on the underside of the bracket and it is also threaded so you still thread the bolts into the existing nuts, but the holes in the 1/4' steel are bigger so the bolt threads through. Might be overkill but it's strong. I attached a picture.

You are making some incredible progress!!! Keep posting the pictures.

Attachments

Photos (1)
Rob,

When I did my door jamb repair I did it as I fit the doors. That is an area as you can see which has a lot of lead in it:

http://www.rc-tech.net/pantera1/door/door.htm

When I did some of my frame repair I also added support in some areas with notches and drain holes to ensure the areas still drain:





I also welded in some panels which helped clean up the look of the rear trunk:

http://www.rc-tech.net/pantera1/paint2/well.jpg
http://www.rc-tech.net/pantera1/paint2/wc2.jpg
http://www.rc-tech.net/pantera1/paint2/well6.jpg
http://www.rc-tech.net/pantera1/paint1/tub2.jpg

On the rear tail I added a plate to make sure it is a solid area which would not be damaged if I wanted to jack there:




Just some ideas

Gary

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