Mark Houlahan
Tech Editor, Mustang Monthly
February 1, 2002

After detailing the engine compartment, dash, and interior, we've finally reached the rear of the car. Now it's time to detail our hardtop's trunk. When the project was debuted-fresh from the paint booth-at last year's MCA Grand National, we installed the gas tank, the taillights, and the rear bumper so we would have a sealed "storage" area for our trip to Raleigh-Durham. But once we returned from the show, we removed everything from the trunk area so we could document the detailing properly and not omit anything.

Although the trunk area is the least seen, even at a show when the trunk is open, it's one of the easiest areas to properly detail and quite possibly one of the most economical as well. Of course, your costs will be determined by the type of parts-N.O.S., repop, or good-used-you choose to restore with. In our case, we restored our trunk (and rear body area) with reproduction parts, and our total was right at $600. Yes, that sounds like a lot of money for trunk detailing, but it includes a new Styled Steel wheel and tire and a new wiring harness. You can also put these costs into perspective when you consider the cost of a complete interior restoration.

You may not need all of these items, but we suggest that if you're completing a full restoration, don't skimp on the cost of a new fuel tank. The cost of a new tank is good peace of mind when you have all-new fuel lines, a new fuel pump, and a completely rebuilt engine all relying on the fuel coming from that tank. The headaches you prevent will most likely be your own.

Next month, we'll build up our V-8 spec C4 transmission with the help of the tranny gurus at Dynamic Racing Transmissions, while we keep our fingers crossed on our latest 289 to go to the machine shop. Shortly afterward, we'll finish our hardtop's exterior trim application and present the 289 engine buildup and installation for you, hopefully in time for Silver Springs 2002! Keep an eye out for these updates.

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