May 1, 2005

Bullet-Style MirrorsWhen I purchased my first car, a '65 Mustang fastback, in 1976, someone broke the outside rearview mirror while I was in class at high school. So I went to my local Ford dealership to get a replacement and, of course, they didn't have one. I asked the parts guy if he had anything that would work. He went back to the parts shelves and brought out a box that said "Mustang 2+2 racing mirrors" with about an inch of dust on it. Inside were two beautiful Shelby bullet-style rearview mirrors. So I bought them for $20 and installed them on my Mustang. Some years later while having bodywork done, the mirrors disappeared. When I went to buy a new set, I noticed they were twice the size of my original racing mirrors, which had glass about 2 inches across. I really loved the look of the smaller mirrors and I'm hoping you can help me locate a set. I've been looking for five years without success.Lynn JohnsonMorrison, CO

Outside rearview mirrors weren't standard equipment on Mustangs until the '66 model year. Outside mirrors on '6411/42 and '65 Mustangs either had to be ordered with the vehicle or installed by the dealer. With so many mirrors available, a dealership could install whatever style mirror they chose, including aftermarket, non-Ford mirrors.

I'll assume the mirrors you had were Ford mirrors that came as standard equipment on '66 Shelby GT350s because they were indeed referred to as "Shelby Bullet-style." These mirrors were small with the glass area the same diameter as the main body. The '65 Shelby GT350s, like other '65 vehicles, had dealer-installed mirrors that were larger in the glass area than the main body. They were actually copies of the English Talbot mirrors. Both styles are coined "bullet-style," thus the confusion.

I suggest you contact Tony D. Branda Shelby and Mustang Parts (1434 E. Pleasant Valley Blvd., Altoona, PA 16602; 800/458-3477; as they have specialized in Shelby parts for many years, so they are well versed in unique Shelby components. Branda calls them Rotunda outside mirrors because they were originally sold through Ford's Rotunda accessory line along with seatbelts, tachometers, and such. These mirrors have just been reproduced with a larger base area to include a wider spacing between screw-mounting holes to cover up the holes from other wide-spaced mirrors. The new mirror will allow you to cover up the holes from a previous mirror installation

Oil Under PressureI have a question about oil pressure in a newly rebuilt 351 Cleveland four-barrel engine for a '73 Mach 1. I've had four oil pumps installed. Three pumped the pressure to 80 pounds and one to 70 pounds. This was done by hand-turning the pump. I'm thinking even 70 pounds is too high. I would like to resolve this before installing the engine.John BarryCovington, IN

Hand-priming a freshly rebuilt engine will always indicate an unusually high oil-pressure reading. Oil pressure is determined by the amount of difficulty, or restrictions, the oil must pass as the pump tries to push it through. When the engine is running, oil passages line up many times a second; when the engine is not running, those passages may be blocked off. Oil feeds in the crankshaft and lifters inside their bores are two examples. Therefore, oil pressure measured for a running engine will be less than that produced by a manually operated pump on a static engine.

The oil pump could produce well over 200 pounds of pressure if it didn't have an internal bypass valve. The bypass is controlled by a coil spring, thus the amount of pressure a pump can produce is determined by spring tension. I believe the difference you have noted between your oil pumps is simply a slight difference in spring tension, and you are well within tolerance. Your 70 to 80 pounds of pressure is typical while hand-priming and I'm sure it will drop into a more normal range once the engine is fired up.

Switch FixI own a '6411/42 Mustang and can't find information about repairing the backup light switch. I think it's the same switch as the neutral safety switch. Is it located on the side of the automatic transmission? How do you check it out or repair it?Ray ManleyVia the Internet

You are correct-the neutral safety switch and backup lights share the same switch unit. Yes, it's located on the transmission.

The unit is actually two separate switches combined into one housing, so it's possible to have one circuit functional while the other is not. Should either the neutral safety switch or the backup light section of the switch fail, the entire unit must be replaced. However, if the switch is out of adjustment, it can disable both the neutral safety and backup lights simultaneously. I believe this is your situation.

Loosening the two mounting screws and rotating the entire switch slightly clockwise or counterclockwise easily adjusts the switch. Try adjusting the switch with the ignition key on and the transmission selector in reverse while an observer watches the backup lights. Should the lights come on while rotating the switch, tighten the mounting screws, then check the operation of the neutral safety switch. You may have to tweak the adjustment slightly in one direction or the other in order to get both the backup lights and neutral safety functions. Intermittent operation is typical of a worn switch and will require switch replacement, which involves removal of the kickdown linkage-arm adjustment of the new switch, per above. Be certain the backup lights work by jumping the switch connector, and observe safety precautions while under the vehicle.

Rebuildable Fuel PumpsIn the July '95 issue of Mustang Monthly, there was a detailed article, "How to Identify Mustang V8 Carter Fuel Pumps." I have a '6511/42 hardtop, a '65 GT convertible, and a '66 GT fastback, all of which have a Carter fuel pump of the sheetmetal crimped-flange type with the top-mounted damper spring. According to the article, the pump for the '6411/42 should be the three-piece type, but as the owner of the car since June 1965, I can't remember it being that type.

My problem is, two of the three are beginning to leak and therefore need to be replaced. Over the years I've been able to find replacements with the correct ID numbers at the local swap meets, but they've become scarce. I would prefer to keep my current pumps for show purposes. Do you know of anyone who can rebuild the pumps with the crimped flange?Bob KiesValley Center, CA

Unfortunately, fuel pumps with the crimped flange are not currently rebuildable. To disassemble the pump, the crimp must be opened, which ruins the lower section of the fuel pump. If a new lower section was available, the pump could be rebuilt easily as the internal pump components are basically the same as the rebuildable three-piece pump.

I'd save the old pump because I believe someone will eventually reproduce the lower section. With today's modern manufacturing techniques, it's becoming increasingly cheaper and easier to produce a stamping like the fuel-pump section. A similar situation has occurred with the distributor's vacuum-advance unit, which also utilizes a crimped stamped-metal cover. Vacuum-advance covers have recently been reproduced, allowing us to finally rebuild an obsolete unit.

What's The Bore?In the Nov. '04 issue, the In Search of Mustangs column indicates that a 289 engine bored .040 should be considered a "throwaway" when rebuilding. What is the maximum bore you recommend?Birl AdamsWhitefish, MT

Engine-block castings do not have to be absolutely identical to each other because precise areas will be machined to perfection after the casting is complete. A good casting is one that allows for the original machining without regard for future machining operations. Ford small-block engines have enough material in the cylinder-bore area to allow for a finished cylinder diameter of up to 4.030 inches and still provide enough material for proper cylinder-wall strength. This is common to any typical block casting from the Ford foundry. Some castings may have come out better than others and will have a more uniform, thicker cylinder-wall area that allows for an additional overbore, up to .060 inch in some cases. Simply stated, all small-blocks can be safely bored .030, while some can tolerate up to .060.

To determine a cylinder wall's thickness, the engine builder or machine shop can perform a sonic test. Should the block prove to be exceptional with thick, round walls, an .040 or .060 bore is OK. Sonic testing is expensive and not all machine shops have the equipment to perform the test. It's much simpler to use any block and limit the overbore to .030.

Power AlignmentI have installed power steering in my '69 Mach 1. The water-pump hose is on the left side, but my power-steering bracket might be for a right-side water pump. The bracket is a little off. Is there a difference between righthand and lefthand brackets?Gary MakarVia the Internet

The brackets do indeed differ slightly and can lead to alignment problems. As you mention, the problem is relatively small. With a bit of filing and a few spacers, the power-steering pump can be properly aligned.

Head SwapI have a '67 Mustang fastback with the 289 two-barrel engine. I recently upgraded to a four-barrel Edelbrock intake and carburetor, and recently got my hands on a set of stock heads from an '89 5.0 engine. Would it be worthwhile to install these heads? I also obtained a set of 1.7 rocker arms.Larry WaughColorado Springs, CO

Because the late-model 5.0 heads are basically a copy of the 289 heads currently on your engine, there is no advantage if you install them. The roller rockers, however, increase the camshaft parameters, but not as much as they would with a 5.0 camshaft. I suggest you switch to the Edelbrock camshaft that's designed to complement the carb/manifold combination. The Edelbrock folks have spent countless hours on the dyno to develop these packages, and they make good power without sacrificing driveability. A good performance exhaust system is also in order, utilizing headers as your budget permits.

Six-Cylinder DiscsAs a new subscriber, I don't know if you've answered this before. I've owned a six-cylinder '66 convertible for nine years. I rebuilt and installed a 351 Windsor, FMX transmission, and a 9-inch rearend out of a '69 Cougar. My only problem is the factory four-lug six-cylinder brakes on the front. All of the disc-brake kits do not bolt to the six-cylinder spindles. What's my best option to get better braking and possibly a dual master cylinder for safety?Dan BaberBuchanan, MI

You'll have to install V-8-style spindles in order to install disc brakes on an early six-cylinder car. Replacement of the small spindles is a good idea regardless of brake choice because the six-cylinder spindles are prone to breakage. They also utilize undersized wheel bearings that are prone to failure.