January 13, 2004

16 Clutch Fixes

This is the Centerforce Dual-Friction diaphragm-styleclutch. Those little flyweights are what make this clutch work soeffectively. The faster the engine spins, the harder the clutch holdsthe disc

Clutch pedal effort is one of the biggest Mustang gripes ever. We hate the way they feel because they are so stiff. However, we're glad if the darned things work at all. Despite the two basic methods of doing away with classic Mustang clutch linkages, there is a solution. First, replace the entire clutch linkage, beginning underneath the dashboard with the pedal support and working your way down to the equalizer bar, bushings, rods, springs, and the like. Replace all of it. Then lubricate the pivot points and bushings before replacing the three-finger Borg & Beck clutch with a Centerforce Dual-Friction clutch, which reduces clutch pedal effort because it isn't stiff. If you've had all you can stand with the 19th century equalizer shaft and linkage, we have two promising solutions. The hydraulic-clutch conversion kit from JMC Motorsports installs in your classic Mustang over a weekend, and it will make shifting easier than ever. Another solution is the cable-clutch conversion kit from D.B. Performance Engineering. With the cable-clutch kit, you're installing late-model Mustang technology in a classic Mustang. When you complement these clutch actuation kits with a Centerforce Dual-Friction clutch, shifting will never be dull again.

17 Braking Upgrade

If you've ever driven a classic Mustang with factory original brakes, you understand how woefully inadequate those old drum binders were. Here's a fix that can save your Mustang, and your life. With Master Power Brakes disc-brake conversion kits, you not only get front disc brakes, you get a dual-braking system to replace the single system on '65-'66 Mustangs. The dual-braking system is designed to give you brakes front or rear should one system fail. All '65-'66 Mustangs need a dual braking system to maintain a suitable level of safety. For more information, contact Master Power Brakes, Dept. MM, 110 Crosslake Park Rd., Mooresville, NC 28117, 888/251-2353, 704/664-8866, www.mpbrakes.com.

18 Engine Runs Hot

We hear this one a lot, especially in the summer. Overheating problems occur when we're not removing enough heat from the engine. The solution starts with a healthy radiator and plenty of airflow. The minimum you should have is a four-row Desert Cooler radiator from Mustangs Plus. Next, don't forget the fan shroud, which channels air through the radiator with authority. Make sure the cooling-fan blade tips are halfway out of the fan shroud, which ensures airflow through the fan. The most efficient cooling fan is a thermostatic clutch fan, which cools as needed. When it isn't needed, it freewheels to conserve power. With a sufficient fan and radiator in place, consider your Mustang's hoses. The lower radiator hose must have a support spring inside. If it doesn't, the hose can collapse at highway speeds, cutting off coolant flow from the radiator to the engine, causing overheating. And, finally, improper installation of cylinder-head gaskets can cause overheating with small-block Ford V-8 engines. Cylinder-head-gasket cooling passages must be located at the rear of the block during installation, which allows coolant to flow at the rear of the block. "FRONT" means front on those head gaskets. Always position the word "FRONT" at the front of the block when you're installing head gaskets. Finally, check your fan-belt tension. A slipping belt will cause overheating.

19 Instruments Acting Weird

Few things befuddle us more than instruments that aren't making sense, like a bouncing speedometer needle, a fuel gauge that registers empty when the tank is full, and a temperature gauge pegging "H" when we are positive the engine isn't overheating. Sound familiar? A bouncing speedometer needle indicates a speedometer head and cable that need lubrication; lots of white grease and WD-40 needed there. Clean the cable and head, then add liberal doses of lubricant. If that doesn't work, replacement of the cable and/or speedometer drive gear may be needed. Electrical instruments work off current flow across the instrument. If all instruments have the same problem (such as all of them reading maximum or all reading nothing), the instrument voltage regulator (also called a voltage limiter) is defective. If one instrument fails to read or reads maximum, the sending unit is defective. It's rare to find a defective instrument. Most of the time, it's a defective voltage limiter or sender.

20 Rock and Roller

You could term this one a "fix." If you're doing a cam swap or building an engine, install a hydraulic roller camshaft from Crane Cams. This camshaft grinder on the Florida coast has a roller-hydraulic-camshaft kit for vintage small-block Fords that enables you to run a more aggressive cam profile without the penalty of a rough idle or excessive engine wear. You get power when the revs come on, yet civilized performance for the daily commute. For more information, contact Crane Cams, Dept. MM, 530 Fentress Blvd., Daytona Beach, FL 32114, 386/252-1151, 386/258-6174 Tech Line; www.cranecams.com.