Donald Farr
Former Editor, Mustang Monthly
August 1, 2007

Last month, we introduced you to our new Timber Wolf '69 Mustang project car. Obtained as part of a Timber Wolf Moist Snuff sweepstakes, the Boss 302 clone is currently undergoing a transformation at Flores Motorsports. Rick Flores, with assistance from Rusty Mahan and Gary Cass, will build the fastback into a modern Boss 347 restomod.

After its delivery to Rick's shop in San Antonio, the Mustang was partially disassembled and delivered to SoTex Soda Blasting in New Braunfels, Texas, for paint stripping and body cleaning. Similar to sandblasting, sodablasting uses sodium bicarbonate-baking soda-to remove surface coatings. Even though the car doesn't have to be completely dismantled, this method ensures the safety of the metal or surrounding components, including the aluminum, fiberglass, chrome, stainless trim, and wiring harnesses; there's no warping, bending, pitting, or scarring of the metal surfaces. Sodium bicarbonate also acts as a rust inhibitor, allowing time to pass before the surface must be painted.

The freshly stripped body was then trailered to Austin, Texas. Rodney Austin of Austin's Collision handled the body work and paint. Unfortunately, the sodablasting uncovered some amateur body repair. Nicknamed "Frankenstein" by Rodney and his staff for its stitched-together appearance, the body was undergoing a sheetmetal revitalization during our visit in preparation for its color change from orange to silver. The car's ill-fitting fiberglass hood will be replaced by a new sheetmetal version from National Parts Depot, while the former Boss 302 striping will be dumped in favor of custom "Boss 347" stripes from Graphic Express.

With the body in the paint shop, Rick began collecting the products needed to transform the vintage Mustang into a modern restomod. For power, we're going with a Ford Racing 347 short-block-based on the new Boss 302 block-with Ford Racing aluminum heads. The four-speed Top Loader will be replaced by a Tremec five-speed conversion from Keisler Engineering. Rick plans to retain the existing Lincoln Versailles 9-inch rearend.

This is how the '69 Mustang looked when it arrived at Flores Motorsports in San Antonio. As we pointed out last month, a previous owner built the car into a Boss 302 clone, complete with rolled fender lips, a shock-tower reinforcement, and filled-in rear quarter-panel scoops.

Rick also dug into the boxes of goodies from Total Control Products and Stainless Steel Brakes Corporation. To modernize the front suspension, he looked to the blue coilover components from Total Control, including upper and lower A-arms, coilover struts, and strut rods. TCP's rack-and-pinion steering is also part of the suspension transformation. For the front and rear brakes, Force 10 Extreme kits won't only stop the 347's forward motion, but they'll also look great, with big slotted rotors and black-powdercoat calipers behind Rick's 18- or 19-inch wheels and tires.

Our project is basically a restoration with performance parts added. For restoration components, including the interior, Rick shopped at National Parts Depot, which delivered the parts almost before the car arrived in Texas.

The best part of this project is that when it's complete, you'll have a chance to win the Boss 347 clone. This is how the contest works: Look under the lid of every Timber Wolf Moist Snuff can to locate a code. Enter that code at www.twspeedshop.com, select the Mustang-among five other cars that other magazines are building-and estimate how much you think it will be worth once the transformation is complete. For a better estimate of its value, watch the videos of the car's makeover on the Web site, and keep an eye on the articles in Mustang Monthly. If you're the first person whose bid is correct, the car is yours. Every lid is a bid and the more Timber Wolf lids you collect, the more estimates you get-and the more chances you'll have to win. The contest ends November 1.