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Jesse 69 Fastback

1969 Flashback

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While I was in high school, i stumbled across a red 1969 Mustang Fastback for sale.  The asking price was $6K and it was in pretty decent shape.  The downside is that as a high school student I didn't have the $6K.  But I was able to secure a personal loan from a family friend, with the agreement that I had to pay it off within 1 year.  I worked my ass off that year and made the final payment just before the 1 year mark.  Later that same year, I enlisted in the Marine Corps, and after several months of basic training and then technical training for my job within the military, I went home on leave and picked up the Mustang.  I drove it to Virginia, and then several months later I crossed the country with it to San Diego, CA.  I planned to be in San Diego for at least 3 years (I never left), so I decided to take the opportunity to go through the car, restoring and repairing what I could.  Unfortunately, I bit off more than my wallet could handle at the time (hey, who hasn't with these things?), so the project ended up taking much longer than I had originally planned.  So much that I eventually, and very reluctantly, decided to sell the car to an older gentlemen that was planning on finishing the restoration with his son.  I have no idea what ever happened to that car, but I hope it's still on the road and not sitting in a junk yard somewhere.

I always regretted selling that car, and over the years I'd looked casually at picking up another one but it never seemed like the right time.  That is until last year, when I was window shopping online and found another red 1969 Mustang Fastback for just the right price.  Not perfect, but not a bucket of junk either, which is exactly what I wanted.  So after a few exchanges with the seller, I took a road trip to Vegas to see the car in person.  I test drove it and it was like a freaking time machine.  As soon as I sat behind the wheel I felt 18 again.  I bought it on the spot.

So that was a year ago, and I've been slowly going through the car making upgrades and improvements.  I replaced the cooling system, swapped in a completed MSD system, and upgraded the stock dash instrument cluster with one from Dakota Digital.  Then earlier this year I came across a local body shop that does absolutely amazing work (Sylvester's Customs).  I drove out to see the owner and spent a few hours learning about his shop, his employees, and his process.  At the end of the conversation he agreed to put my car on the waiting list and I couldn't be more excited!

Now it seems that I'm all in on a restoration/rejuvenation.  I'm not planning on going all original, since I like the idea of taking advantage of the 50 years of auto advancements since the car was launched, but I'm mostly keeping with the original look of the 69 Mach 1.  I'll be using this thread to keep track of all the work that I do to the car over time.  Right now I'm in the middle of swapping out the Ford 8inch rearend with a 9inch from Currie, and replacing the C4 with a Tremec TKX swap from SST.

My original Mustang from high school:



My new Mustang:


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Back in May I swapped out the old radiator and crappy fan with a complete kit from West Coast Classic Cougar.  The kit includes a new 3 core 24” big block radiator, fan shroud, big block fan with clutch, and all the mounting hardware.  The swap was easy and fit was great.

Cooling System Upgrade Kit

Radiator Diff:


Install Finished:


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I installed the 9 inch last week.  Pretty much everything is new except for the leaf springs, which i cleaned up and painted to match the rest.  Just need to finish running the brake and e-brake lines and fill it up with fluid.  Then on to the TKX swap!

Currie 9inch

  • 31 Spline Axles
  • Sportsman Nodular Iron Gear Case
  • 3.50 Gears (Polished)
  • Eaton Truetrac Posi
  • 1350 Nodular Iron Yoke
  • Wilwood 11" Dynapro/D/S/Red
  • Powder Coat, Gloss Black

Calvert Racing CalTracs Traction Bars

Koni Special Adjustable Shocks





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It's been a while since I posted an update, and a lot has changed!

After sitting about a year and a half on the waitlist, my body shop is ready to start on the car.  I stripped the car of every last panel and bolt, in preparation for sending it off to Xpress Metal Cleaning in Phoenix, AZ.  There I had it acid dipped to remove everything but the steal.  Next week it gets picked up and delivered to the body shop to start the real work! 

The car did look pretty good before the dip, and people would ask me, "Why are you doing this, the car looks great as it is!"  Well, one look at the quarter panels after the acid dip is all I needed to know that I did the right thing!  Once we have it back and can look at it in person, we'll determine of the quarters will need to be reskinned.  Right now I'm thinking yes. 


Teardown begins!







Loaded up for transport:





Squeaky clean after the dip:





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Too late to turn back now :)  Heck, from what I can see your quarters are in better shape than mine that were repaired. I hope you're quicker than me after I took mine down to bare metal, 17 years for me before I drove it again :(

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Well, a LOT has happened since I last posted an update.  When we got the car back from the acid dip in Arizona, it was very clear that bad thangs had happened in this car's 50+ years of life.  At some point, the car had been hit pretty hard in the rear, and there was also some pretty decent damage to the front passenger side.  Might have been part of the same accident, maybe not.  Either way, the person or persons that "fixed it" did not do a very good job.  In the rear, the frame had been cut and then "repaired" and very poorly.  The front was not much better.  On top of that most of the sheet metal was pretty bad in areas, and after a lot of back and forth, me and the shop owner decided to go with new sheet metal wherever we could.  I'm still on the fence about if this was a good idea or not, since repop metal is a crap shoot, but here we are.

So after creating a jig in the car to keep track of anchor points, the car was chooped up pretty good.  Since then, he's been slowly working on getting all the new metal installed.  New torque boxes, new floor pan pannels in the front, new passenger inner fender, new core support, new fenders, new hood (that one because the acid dip place dented the crap out of the original, so they bought me a new one).  The whole rear end has been rebuilt, and I've decided to install a mini tub kit as well, which should be going in next week.

I'd love to share some pics of the car along the journey, and the current status, but pic uploads don't seem to be working...


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Highly unlikely.  But I'm in for next year for sure.  When I finally get the car back from the shop, it's gonna be a long journey to get it back on the road.  I'm planning on being very meticulous with the reassembly.  Every singe part is gonna be refurbished or replaced.

Also, any ideas what's up with not being able to upload images?

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