May 10, 2006

If you're starting a new classic-Ford project this year, you have a lot to consider. The variables include budget, work space, time, ability, and more. Even with all the hard work, few things are more fun than the hunt for a new labor of love and the process of creating the car you've always wanted. As you progress through the project, there will be many great moments, and one of the best is the first testdrive in the finished result.

So, first things first. What is your project going to be? We all love Mustangs, and of course they must be included on any list of potential project cars. However, there are many other great Ford cars you could consider for your next project. Some of us may already have a Mustang and might want something different for a second car. (That would be me!-Ed.) If you're not dead set on a particular model, keep a lookout for a killer deal on a classic-Ford that's too good to pass up. Although you may be looking for a Fairlane, don't ignore a great deal on a Falcon.

We love all Fords, but from a high-performance-project standpoint, some years and models are better than others. While we have nothing against a hopped-up Edsel or a four-door Maverick, we want to look at the brightest examples in the vintage-Ford spectrum for performance modification, mostly from Ford's Total Performance years.

If you're in the game of creating a modified classic-Ford, there is a wide variety to choose from. We'll look at some Ford engines and see what modifications have been done to enhance both looks and power. Finally, we'll see a couple examples of each type of car equipped with modifications from mild to wild.

All Things Considered
We all have our dream projects but not all of us have a dream bank account. You're setting yourself up for failure if you live on franks-n-beans and you're looking for a '67 Fairlane to receive a supercharged modular, pie-plate disc brakes, 18-inch wheels, trick suspension, and a full custom interior--did I just describe my own dream project?

Take your time and shop around. While it's true that many of the classic Fords we want are escalating in price every day, and there are fewer examples out there to be found, you can still find a decent deal with patience and persistence. Know what you want, what your budget can handle, and work from there. Don't know a thing about paint and body? Then find a solid car that doesn't need any metal work, and then drop your drivetrain du jour into it.

You can always work up to your dream car. Maybe you want a '63 Galaxie with a Cammer and an old-school four-speed, but that Cammer engine is going to cost more than the car you currently drive to work every day. Find yourself a Mustang hardtop or a clean Falcon to start with instead. Get your feet wet, build a nice little restomod, and then use the profits from the sale of that car to fund your true dream project. You'll get project experience, time under the hood, and enjoy a fun driver. We've even heard of people taking an older project and trading it with some cash or other valuables for their dream project.

So what are you waiting for? Get started today, and don't forget to show us those great before and after pictures, and tell us all about your project. -Mark Houlahan

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