Mustang MonthlyNews & Views
1965 Mustang Convertible Group 2 Autolite - Resto Roundup
Concours Expert Bob Perkins Handles Your Restoration Questions
I have a '65 convertible that was built on April 6, 1965. The car is very plain with a 289 two-barrel engine and no power options. What would have been the original battery for this car? I currently have a Group 2 Autolite because it is the only reproduction available for a '65 Mustang. Several people have told me that the Group 24 was actually the optional battery. What was the standard battery and is it available today as a reproduction?Donny MurthaMiami, FL
The standard battery for '65-'66 Mustangs was the Autolite Group 22, which had raised yellow lettering on the top from '65-'67. Sometime during the '68 model year the yellow lettering was replaced by a warranty tag, similar to the ones used on the current reproduction batteries. ECS Automotive makes an excellent reproduction warranty tag for the Group 24, 27, and 29 series Autolites.
A Group 22 series battery is a rare find regardless of the date on the case. It has not been reproduced, which surprises me because it was the most widely used battery for first generation Mustangs.
I'm looking for someone to restore the Rim-Blow steering wheel in my '70 Mach 1. The wheel is in very good condition but the woodgrain is worn and the rubber switch is so hard that it's difficult to activate the horn. I'm a little reluctant to send it off but it definitely needs a restoration.Johnny WelchMemphis, TN
I highly recommend Bill Herndon at Pony Warehouse. He has been restoring steering wheels for over 20 years and I've always been satisfied with his work. You can call him at 919/435-8396 (North Carolina) or send an e-mail to email@example.com.
I ordered and purchased a '66 Mustang fastback from a Ford dealership in Oklahoma City in the fall of 1965. I'm the only owner of this car, which is currently going through a complete restoration. What were the original shocks-Motorcraft or Autolite, black or red? There seems to be some confusion with some of the parts companies. Some list Motorcraft made by Gabriel for concours replacement but they are red for both front and rear. The Ford parts book shows red for the rear and black for the front. Can you help?Ira SatterfieldSt. James, MO
The original shocks for your '66 Mustang were black for both front and rear, identified by either FoMoCo or Autolite depending on the build date. You will need to paint the currently available Motorcraft shocks in semi-gloss black as an alternative to the original Autolite shocks, which are hard to find today. They do show up for sale on eBay from time to time.
In the Details
I have a couple of detail questions for my '69 Mach 1, a 428 Cobra Jet/automatic car that was built December 14, 1969, at the Dearborn Assembly Plant. What is the correct finish for the front coil springs, natural or black?
My second question concerns the fender bolts. My car has three different manufacturer markings on the fender and underhood bolts. Should I use the originals, which have been replated, or use the ones manufactured for judging at concours shows? I also have a set of the flag logo bolts from AMK if you think they would be less controversial to judges.
Finally, should the four bolts attaching the hood to the hood hinges have the larger washers? I have three '69 Mach 1s and two of them use the regular size fender washers while the other has the larger washers. What do you suggest?MarkVia the Internet
Great questions, Mark. The front coil springs were finished in semi-gloss black with the appropriate identification codes.
As for the fender and underhood bolts, we always use the original factory hardware, if possible. Multiple brand markings for fender bolts and underhood components are normal production. As long as the finish is correct and the hardware is appropriate for the model year, a good judge should not deduct points for multiple manufacturer markings.
The bolts that attach the hood to the hood hinge should, but don't always, use the larger washers. Again, I would not deduct points for either style.
Send restoration questions to: Resto Roundup, c/o Bob Perkins, Perkins Restoration, North 2123 Hwy. 16 & 26, Juneau, WI 53039. Send email to firstname.lastname@example.org.