Wayne Cook
November 1, 2008
Photos By: Jim Smart

Chad McCance of Atlantic, Iowa, is the longtime owner of this '65 Mustang coupe. He was only 19 years old when his father bought the car home as a project in 1986. He was pleasantly surprised when his parents gave him the coupe for his 20th birthday. To put it mildly, "it was a bit of a mess at the time." The rear quarters were rusted out and the Mustang had orange shag carpeting. It also had long rear shackles with the original wheels and hubcaps. Chad was lucky because from the very first day he was able to enlist the help of his dad, who is a Ford enthusiast and professional mechanic. Modifications started right away as they tossed the 289 and replaced it with a 302, graciously donated by his grandma's Comet. Chad and his dad rebuilt grandma's engine with a radical cam and 351 Windsor heads. He drove the car with that engine for many years.

Since he has owned the Mustang he has gone through it several times. For example, this is the third paint job in the 22 years since he has owned the coupe. He has replaced leaking cowls, both quarter panels, both fenders, the radiator support, the hood, the driver's door, both rear subframes, and both front floor pans. When he finally decided on a completely new engine, he knew that he wanted to build it himself. He ordered a PAW short-block and then added the Edelbrock Performer Power Package top end kit. Dad came out to oversee the installation and to be sure that Chad didn't mess anything up. He found that the new engine transformed his car into an excellent daily driver.

Boost Is Better
However, Chad felt that his Mustang looked just like everyone else's at the car shows he attended. He began to ponder what could be done to set his car apart from the crowd. When he saw Paxton advertising its updated supercharger kit for small-block Fords, he knew what he wanted to do. He ordered one and, once again, his father was on hand to assist with the installation. He says that he loves the way the supercharger works. There was no change to the nice cruising manners his car had and when he hits the throttle the car "goes like mad." He chose the polished version, saying that it does get a lot of attention every time he lifts the hood.

Chad wants to thank a lot of people for helping with his project, especially his dad. Ron and David Bramlett of Mustangs Plus have been of tremendous help and he considers them both to be good friends. Mark Montoya of Ray's Paint and Body in Price, Utah, did a great job, and Chad was also careful to mention that his wife has shown "extreme patience." She also gets credit for picking the colors. Chad has enjoyed working on his Mustang, but he says it's not his favorite thing about the car. To Chad, the best aspect of ownership has been that a shared interest in the Mustang has kept his family close. He has had to call home countless times to ask his father questions. Also, his parents traveled over 700 miles to help with the installation of the supercharger. Finally, Chad hopes to bring the next generation of his family into the hobby. He wants to instill the same passion he has for Mustangs into his son, Bryce, and he recently bought a '67 Mustang coupe in pretty rough shape for the two of them to work on (Boy, that sounds familiar! -Ed.). Bryce is somewhat intimidated by the magnitude of the project before them but, at 15 years old, he has lots of time.

Photo Gallery

View Photo Gallery