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Vicfreg

1970 Convertible Restoration

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Thanks for your picture. Street or Track did an article on adding inner vert rockers to a 65-68 fastback. They shortened them and added flanges to tie them to the outside of the torque boxes. What do you think of this approach? Does the rocker "end" in your car where I have drawn the line in the attachment rocker.doc?

 

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rocker.doc

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Terry, I did mine like the above photo and they worked fine. It's a different chassis than before, and well worth the effort for me. But then I added an 8 point roll bar, so...

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20 hours ago, Vicfreg said:

I am attaching one that may help.  I will ask Mike to also attach a pic, as he has my car, and also, his fastback I believe has the convertible rockers.

 

 

 

I installed them to the rear torque box, much like everyone else, but I did a fillet weld instead of tabs. I wanted a little more contact area, plus it was fun :)

 

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Sorry Vic, I should be arrested for hijacking. Yes it would be easier to put in SFCs but I've seen a test that shows that they do zero for torsional twist and inner rockers are the way that Ford decided to strengthen the vert when they took the roof off, so I'll stick with that. 

Latoracing from your picture it looks like the rocker only extends back about 6-8" more from where you welded. I like the fillet you did and wondered why Street or Track didn't do that also.

Ridge you are always a wealth of information. Do you think that could be done if the floor was left in- my floor is still in excellent condition. I plan on custom sheet metal for the inner rockers that won't require me to cut the floor from the outside rockers. I should probably start a post on this and get all of your expertise.

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You have to slice the floor 1/4 inch from the original rocker for the convertible rocker to pass through ,the floor will now weld to the bottom of the convert rocker same as a convert would the rear box is cut for a tight slip fit ,but you must brace the back half because it cuts the torque box loose ,the front is fairly simple ,you cut for a slip fit and knock the convert rocker in from the rear ant it will weld to the front of the torque box with plug welds or cut  a slot and fill weld . The floor remains in the car . Adding the convert seat box will also stiffen the structure ,especially since you still have a roof unlike a convert

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I have been scoping out the exhaust and seeing what types of fitment issues are going to raise their ugly heads. Vic had a Pypes stainless 2.5" X pipe kit to start with. The generic fitment was surprising as the X and both tail pipes kinda fit without cutting, YET! I spent some of his hard earned money on items needed to hang this system along with some MagnaFlow mufflers.

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These things will get cleaned up as they are not going to stay looking like this. I started at the headers with the collectors. The fuel injection system needs an O2 sensor for obvious reasons so I installed the appropriate bungs and mostly welded them in place, then stuck them on the car.

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I added another bung on the passenger side as I am not so sure if something might interfere on the drivers side. Either one can be plugged off if not used. 

Messing with the X pipe it will be cut into several pieces shortly as the width is way too tight..

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and i want to center it a little better for drive shaft yoke clearance.

The down tubes are MIA on this kit so I have a bunch of mandrel bends to help snake this through the tunnel and get it fitting with the pan-hard bar in the rear.

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This setup is tight, but once it is all in position I'm going to make it fit without spacing the cross plate (I may eat my words on that one later lol) and keep it tucked up nice and tight. I'll be cutting up stuff next...

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NIce work Mike.  Yeah, on the drivers side I have a Lokar kick down cable that has to go down that way, so thanks for thinking of the O2 sensor on the other side......

Magnaflows look pretty good, understand now what you meant by cleaning them up.

 

 

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Got started fitting tubing into its new home. I have sorta mapped out how I hope this will run, so I started with the collectors... obviously. Since I'm playing with 2.5" tube my saw guide needed a new block to help hold stuff in place. I didn't have any more UHMW so this one is out of treated lumber. It will do for now.

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A few measurements and several checks for the proper degree, the bends were cut to 52 degrees for both sides. The first part I cut had just the right amount of straight on it so it got tack welded to the collector and the extension. 

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Checking for fitment on the car, it looks pretty good, not quite as high as I want it, but the trans brace is going to dictate it's location. The tube is a tad bit higher than the trans pan. 

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I am going to cut off the slip fit on these parts as I like the clean look of butt welds, plus this slip fit is going the wrong way :) I removed the O2 sensor from the drivers side and installed it on the passenger side. Measured the straight section from the collector to the elbow, cut and tack welded it in place along with the other extension. I stuck it in place to check for fitment.

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So far, so good. I'll be messing with the X pipe next to do some surgery on it so it will play nice with the tight confines between the seat reinforcements and removing stupid stickers from all these parts. They don't want them coming off...

 

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1 hour ago, Mach1 Driver said:

I like your little fixture on the band saw

It is very helpful. I used it a bunch when I did my headers. Very accurate angles and nice straight cuts. All built out of leftovers...

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Measure, cut, tack, cut apart, repeat... fitting a 2.5" X pipe to a convertible is fun. I'm half tempted to get my rotisserie out and put this thing on it (not really, but it would be easier). Getting all the angles to work together, and keep the O2 sensor bungs in position. I am going for maximum clearance at the transmission yoke and fitment through the "tunnel" along with keeping the front portion tight to the body. The C6 cross member doesn't have much clearance for exhaust on the drivers side so I kept both sides at the same height. The pipe sticks down about 1.75" beyond the floor supports. 

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Before I chopped up the X pipe, I laid out where I wanted it to land in the car. The trans is 1" to the drivers side and I wanted the X centered on it, basically for the yoke to clear, but I would go nuts knowing it was out of center. Getting it all butchered up and removing all of the slip joints the fitting began. If you notice in the following picture, the X is going up hill. This was really fun to calculate the angles for. I cut the back sections of tube off a little staggered, as they are fixing to switch sides next time out. 

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Most of all the joints fit really tight but the Pypes tubing is just a little larger than the mandrel bends I was using to fit the parts. I'll get them hammered in place to smooth out the connections. I'll be removing this section to get it on the table and fry all the pieces together as it is a little more manageable in this state. 

Looking up from the floor, it looks quite simple...

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Removed the pipes from the car this afternoon to get this section welded up. I tack welded a piece of stainless angle between the inlets to help hold them in position while welding. It would be really bad if these things moved a bunch and didn't fit the headers any more.

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The usual skipping around method works well on pipe systems too. It keeps everything nice and cool (so I don't get burnt to pieces), less distortion and less moving of the pipes (cause I'm lazy). Just weld everything you can get to and move everything around to get to the next area. it took a little bit, but eventually I got all the joints welded shut. Once it all cooled off I removed the angle and started getting this section cleaned up. A little red scotch-brite and it will look presentable. 

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One side almost cleaned up compared to as welded side. I like the cleaned up side without the HAZ around the welds. I'll get this bolted back on the car and continue fitting pieces of the puzzle together. 

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Mike, nice work....

Scratching my head about the 1" toward the drivers side....    I don't recall any lateral (side to side) adjustments on the trans crossmember.  So, since my engine is set towards the passenger side, using the adjustable motor mounts, the trans crossmember acts as a pivot point and causes the back end of the trans to be 1" closer on the drivers side?

 

 

 

 

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OK give me a sneak peek at what Mike is conjuring up for my exhaust.   I wanted exhaust to the valence not under it, and I want my reverse lights gone so that’s were headed stay tuned ....

 

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The fun things you can do with a CAD program and a printer...

In order to get to the tip customization I gotta get the pipes ran out the back. I trimmed and fitted the pipes from the X pipe to the mufflers. Attempting to keep them the same height and end in the relative same place was interesting. As all this is tack welded together past the X, it will have to come back down and get fully welded before I get the hangers fabricated. I have thought about using the V band clamps before the mufflers or after, but as these exhaust systems are heavy and the only hangers are in the rear of the car, I chose to locate the clamps forward of the mufflers.

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The mufflers are 14" long plus the inlet and outlet tubes. I trimmed about half of the inlet tube and attached the other half of the V band clamp to see how it would look on the car.

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It fits, but might need another inch out of the flange to help with the over the axle portion. The outlet flange will also pretty much disappear to get the pipe centered over the axle. 

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I'll chop up the driver's side muffler, tack the V band fitting to it and see what I have to cut up next. Hopefully everything will fit and I can get the middle section welded to the front section for good. 

I did get Vic a driveshaft ordered so he wouldn't have to worry about breaking my PVC shaft, its a rare piece ;). It should be ready next week. 

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Had a fun day of fitting and getting a lot accomplished with these pipes. I had to trim the muffler inlets and outlets first thing. Got them cut and the flanges tack welded in place. The mufflers fit really nice so the flanges were welded solid. I'm getting use to new contacts and I am having fun with depth perception, my welds are suffering...

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I removed the exhaust and finish welded all the connections and flanges. With a little adjustment after it cooled off it was ready to get cleaned up. I used red scotch-brite to remove the discolored areas and give the pipes a uniform look. I did not remove all the surface imperfections so there are some deeper scratches and manufacturing defects in the tube. Using the strip of material like a belt I quickly got it looking better. 

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I picked up a weird little stand from work the other day as they were going to chuck it in the recycle bin (it was a brand new sample from someone) and set it up to help hold the pipes as I finished with the cleaning. It worked fairly well, might have to keep it around for a while.

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The cleaning took less than an hour total, but looks presentable. I stuck it back under the car, bolted it to the headers and installed the mufflers which are being supported by the stands. Once everything was in its proper position I installed the belly plate, just to see how everything cleared, which it did nicely. Laying on the floor looking up revealed this...

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So far so good. Now to build some hangers and chop up some tail pipes.

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Time to  fab up some hangers for this system. As I wasn't quite sure of how I wanted to go about doing this, I messed around with some 304 1/2" round rod to see if I could bend up something that might look the part.

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Wasn't too overly thrilled with the way that turned out and I wasn't sure it would do what I want it to do, so I made a rough template out of some poster board for a little more custom look.

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I'll probably make the bracket encircle the muffler outlet as this looks chopped off. A little bit of work needs to be accomplished to fab up the brackets and the mounts for the floor board attachment areas as well. The hangers will be 11ga stainless and have to be dressed up a little, and to lighten them up some too.

Went and picked up the custom driveshaft this afternoon. I have a shop up the road from me that does lots of custom drivelines for all kinds of vehicles and machinery. Got it back to the shop and bolted it in place. Looks like it belongs.

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