Mark Houlahan
Brand Manager, Mustang Monthly
September 1, 2008

Finishing a project car can be a religious experience for some-a huge weight or burden off their shoulders. No more late nights grinding away at a metal hulk; sanding for untold hours until your fingertips bleed; or taking that first nervous drive down the street after installing the running gear and hoping you put the brakes together right. Once your project is complete, tagged, and insured, the short trips to the corner gas station or a few laps around the block begin. Success leads to longer and longer trips as your confidence builds in what you've taken so long to painstakingly build in your garage or home shop.

We're happy to announce that we've come to the same point in our Factory Five Cobra replica project. We've installed the last part, thrown away the last box, and had our project car tagged, insured, and aligned. Now it's time to put some miles on it and see what she'll do.

Our Roadster has been a very enjoyable project from many aspects. For starters, there's the something-different factor. Sure, we get a thumbs-up or "nice car" when we drive our '66 Mustang, but when you're driving the Roadster, you're undeniably a rock star! You can't stop for gas without a 15-minute conversation about the car, and for the uninitiated, when we tell them we built the whole car ourselves, save for the engine and paintwork, the questions start right back up (which is why we keep FFR DVDs in the car with us).

We can say that the build of our Factory Five Roadster has not only been rewarding but also fun and educational. Meeting fellow builders, attending their build parties, and discussing upgrades and options at events and on the ffcobra.com forums is something we don't see too often in the Mustang world. Building a project like this also taught us new procedures we've not used in the past, and allowed us to purchase tools we didn't have (hey, it's always good when you can use your project as a valid excuse to hit the tool store). We're looking forward to displaying the completed project during the fall show season here in Florida, and who knows where we'll take it in 2009? Look for a full feature on the Roadster with specs, build costs, and more in an upcoming issue, but for now, let's wrap up our build with a few safety items, an alignment, and a road test.

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