Category: Car Restoration




The Single-Rail Overdrive, otherwise known as the SROD, is considered a “wide-ratio” 4-speed gearbox and features a smooth aluminum case with fully synchronized forward gears.
The reverse was left unsynchronized. The input shaft is a 10-spline while the output shaft is a 28-spline. On the VIN Door Tag, the Transmission Code is the number 6.
Because the SROD is unable to handle the increased horsepower, they are rarely seen being used in anything other than in a restored Ford Mustang.

Gear ratios for the SROD Mustang Manual Transmission are:

1979 To Early 19833.071.721.00.703.07

The SROD can be found behind:

  • 1979 Ford Mustang GT 5.0L V8
  • 1982 to early 1983 Ford Mustang GT 5.0L V8


The venerable T5 Transmission is the longest-running transmission style used in the late model Mustang.
The heavily ribbed cast aluminum case serves as the home for fully synchronized 5 forward gears and reverse and features a 10-spline input shaft with a 28-spline output shaft.
There were many variations over the years, so stick with me here. 1983 1/2 to 1984 Mustang T5 manual transmission is called a Non-World Class, or NWC.
They are the least desirable of the V8 T5 manual transmissions as the gear metallurgy, synchronizer design, and bearing arrangement were based on old technology.

In the 1985 Mustang model year, the T5 was “upgraded” to a World-Class, or WC unit.
This added a much better synchronizer design, wide-ratio gearset, needle bearings for 1st, 2nd, and 3rd speed gears, and improved metallurgy throughout.
In 1989, the metallurgy was once again improved on the 2nd Speed Gear, 3rd Speed Gear, and Countershaft Cluster Gear.
The tooth pitch of 2nd and 3rd was revised for strength and the gear ratios were slightly altered. 1992 brought about a welcome upgrade in synchronizer facing material from organic to carbon fiber.
The reverse synchronizer assembly was also revised for better engagement.

In 1993, for the Cobra and Cobra R Mustang, the countershaft cluster gear received a special coating and the input bearing was upgraded from a Torrington style to a tapered roller bearing.
1994-1995 Mustang T5’s shared the same features as the Fox last variants, but the input shaft and input bearing retainer were a longer length.
1994-95 T5 will not fit Fox Mustang and 1983-93 T5 will not fit 1994-95 Mustangs without extensive modification.
1983-1989 Mustang T5 was equipped with a yellow 7-tooth speedometer drive gear and 1990-1995 Mustang T5 was equipped with a light green 8-tooth drive gear.
Gear ratios over the years for the Ford Mustang T5 are:

1983 1/22.951.941.341.00.732.76

The T5 can be found behind:

  • 1983 to 1993 Ford Mustang LX and Mustang GT 5.0L V8
  • 1993 Ford Mustang Cobra and Cobra R 5.0L V8
  • 1994 to 1995 Ford Mustang GT and Cobra 5.0L V8


This Mustang transmission justified its own mention due to its significance in the aftermarket as both a restoration and a performance part.
Basically, the T5 “Z” spec takes all the good updates and rolls them into one transmission.
The aluminum case is the latest revision and is the strongest offered on a production T5. Second, Third, and countershaft gears are all double moly.
All of the synchronizers are the latest revisions, with the 3rd and 4th featuring a carbon fiber facing. It has the 93 Cobra-style input pocket bearing and is already equipped with a steel input bearing retainer.
It has the standard-issue 10-spline 1-1/16 input shaft and 28-spline output shaft.
The speedometer drive gear is the desirable 7-tooth.
Gear ratios for the LRS-7003A Heavy Duty T5 Manual Transmission are:

Year1st2nd 3rd4th5thReverse

The Ford Racing M-7003-Z T5 is a direct bolt-in for:

  • 1983 to 1993 Ford Mustang 5.0L V8

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Rather than make glue out of old ponies, Ford whipped up a dealer-installed package to sell used Mustangs – Thomas A. Demauro @Hemmings


Late Sixties Branded kits even made their way to new Mustangs

Leave it to Ford to so thoroughly support its already hot-selling Mustangs that it created a dress-up kit to make its pre-owned ponies stand out on dealer lots. A runaway hit like the Mustang could’ve easily created a glut in the used-car market when they were traded in to dealerships in high volume for newer models. One way to move those second-hand gems more quickly was to provide them with affordable visual enhancements. Thus, Ford created the “Branded Kit” and tasked DSI Corporation of Plymouth, Michigan, with producing it.


An emblem for each C-pillar was included in the Branded Kit.

For a dealer cost of $47.25 in 1968 dollars (about $385 today), the kit was delivered in a mailing tube that contained the ready-to-install vinyl top, which was available in 15 different bold patterns/colors across four categories: sculptured, tweed, paisley, and leather. Also included were “Thoroughbred” tape stripes in blue, white, red, gold, or black; a pair of C-pillar running horse emblems in silver or gold tone; chrome trim for the top’s lower edges; plus two cans of adhesive and installation instructions.

The “B” version was marketed for 1965 to 1966 Mustangs and “A” was for 1967-’68 models. In some instances, the over-the-counter Branded Mustang Kits were applied to new models, as well

Courtesy of Fran Cosentino
This NOS Branded Kit reveals its contents and how it was shipped. Fran relates that the screw-on C-pillar moldings were specific and had their own Ford part numbers cast into the back, as seen here.

Finding a Branded Mustang

Marlene and Keith White of McKees Rocks, Pennsylvania, purchased this Branded 1967 Mustang in 2019. “Our friend Fran Cosentino had the car restored, but found that he was not getting it out enough for people to see and enjoy,” Marlene recalls. “I love the color and the way it complements the roof, so when he thought about selling it, I knew I had to have it.”

Fran says he’s always been on the lookout for interesting special edition Mustangs. He recalls that, once he began delving deeper into the Branded cars, “All things ‘Branded’ started coming to me.” He ultimately acquired six Branded Kits, a set of uber-rare Branded cufflinks, and, in 2011, this Mustang, which even sported a seemingly one-off Branded fender emblem.

He didn’t reinstall the badge during the car’s subsequent restoration because, “It had been difficult enough to convince people that the Branded Kits from Ford actually existed,” he laments, “so I didn’t want to confuse the issue further with an item I couldn’t verify as being part of it. The badge may have simply been made by a dealer trying to take the package a step further.”

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Let there be (the correct) light(s) – S10 Headlamps


After many years of owning the Chevy S10 Xtreme I finally got around to securing a pair of RHD headlamps from a UK market Blazer.

Understandably due to the age and coming from a breakers they are a little crusty. Don’t be fooled, they are are in great shape for the cost involved. The breaker also included all the bracketry and clips in the very well packed box.

Look forward to cleaning these up and fitting them, being able to see properly at night will be a real bonus!

Variety of vintage vehicles va-voom up very gravely valleyside – David Conwill @Hemmings


Jalopy Hillclimb provided an outlet for those dampened by TROG

October 22, 2022, was on everyone’s lips in Wildwood earlier in the month. As The Race of Gentlemen wasn’t unfolding, folks with hopped-up Model As and other sorts of traditional hot rods (that is, the kind that look like they did in the ‘50s and before) were looking for one more place to go fast before weather brought the driving season to a near-complete halt. For those who lived in or near New England, Campton, New Hampshire, was that place.

Held on private land and advertised almost exclusively by word of mouth, the Jalopy Hill Climb started in 2021 more or less on a whim, when Alan Johnston decided to try and get his ’39 Ford pickup to the top of his brother’s mountain/sand-and-gravel pit, which happens to include a steep dirt road and spectacular views of the White Mountains. The flathead-powered ’39 made it and spawned the idea of inviting other cool old (pre-’62) cars to attempt the feat themselves

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More than just 950 old trucks, the Nebraska Truck Hoard is also 950 stories about old trucks – Daniel Strohl @Hemmings


Thirty years’ worth of collecting will get dispersed at auction later this month

Rob van Vleet has so many old cars and trucks—mostly trucks—scattered across the grasslands of western Nebraska that he has entirely forgotten about some in particular and has lost track of precisely how many he currently owns. Somewhere between 1,500 and 1,800, he figures.

On the other hand, he can still rattle off the names of the previous owners of some of those vehicles as if he talked to them yesterday, recalling exactly where they lived, the conversations they had, and how that previous owner employed that truck to make a living, whether it be hauling watermelons from Florida to Toronto, shipping produce from western Colorado over the mountains to Denver, or shooting blue flames out their exhaust stacks running propane through Hall-Scott engines.

“Whenever I see an old truck, I like to know what the old guy did with it,” he says.

And, as the size of his collection attests, he usually succeeds in purchasing the old truck and bringing it home with him. But now, he’s realized it’s time to disperse most of those trucks and their stories via what Kraupie’s Auctioneers has called the Nebraska Truck Hoard Auction, an online sale of more than 950 vehicles.

How the Hoard came to be

It’s not the first time he’s amassed a sizable collection of old cars and trucks. By trade, van Vleet hauls heavy and oversize scrap around the Midwest and Rocky Mountain regions, so he’s often coming across older cars and trucks out sitting in fields or parked in back forties. “Out here in Nebraska, there’s no trees, so you can see those trucks way off in the distance, and a few hours later, you’ll finally reach them,” he says. “Out here, we have nice old stuff—not fancy, but good.”

He started knocking on doors to see if he could buy the older vehicles, partly because they interested him, and partly because he could always fire up his scrap-processing machinery to liquidate the old vehicles if necessary. “My formula when I was going around is that I’d buy them for $75, knowing they were worth $650 for scrap,” he says. “It was really a rationalization to buy more old trucks.”

More often than not, he’d simply hang on to the vehicles. He had the wide open spaces, and the climate in his corner of Nebraska does a good job of preserving anything left outside. By the late 1990s, his collection topped 600 old trucks, but then he had to sell them all at auction to satisfy a bank loan. “A lot of good stuff went to new homes,” he says. “And a lot of good stuff got away.” Rather than sulk about it and regret selling that collection, however, van Vleet did what he does best: He started scouring the countryside every weekend to once again build up a fleet of derelicts.

He insists that he doesn’t run a junkyard, just a stash, so pretty much everything he buys remains in the same state as when he hauled it to where it now sits. By his estimation, most of what he has could be made to run after a day or two of wrenching. He, however, has never made the time to do so, and he’s coming to realize that he probably never will with such a sizable collection, so he’s made the decision to sell it all off again. “I like them, but I go out and look around and wonder what the hell I’m doing,” he says. “There just comes a time when you’ve got to move on.”

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1947 Ford Super Deluxe Packs Ford Racing Surprise Under The Hood, Oozes Restomod Swagger – Benny Kirk @Autoevolution


Without further delay, this is a 1947 Ford Super Deluxe. And no, it does not come with curly fries. In fact, in fast food terms, this 1947 Ford’s underpinnings were the equivalent of a wayward fried cheese stick that fell under your seat the last time you went through the Arby’s lord knows how many days ago. In the frankest terms possible, it was warmed-up technology from before the Second World War.

The basis for which this 1947 restomod finds its basis made its debut six years prior in 1941. Why? Well, it was at that time that the United States decided to join the Second World War. Suddenly, factories building cars and trucks for civilians started building tanks, airplanes, and artillery pieces instead. In their day, the 1941 Ford series of cars and trucks came sporting either a 90-horsepower L-head straight six engine or the ever-present Ford Flathead V8. Service engines in their day, but what Roseville Rod & Custom of Roseville, California packed under this one’s hood dwarfs any engine from the 40s.

It’s a modern Ford Racing engine, a 302-cubic inch (5.0-liter) X2302E Boss V8 rocking goodies like forged steel pistons, connecting rods, and hydraulic roller camshaft and Ford Performance cylinder heads similar to those found on a GT40 LeMans racer. Needless to say, it’s packed with technology the average engine designer of 1947 would call witchcraft. Getting everything to work harmoniously required a nearly full body-off-frame job, stripping the car to its bare body shell without its quarter panels and just the bare frame remaining underneath.

From there, Ford Racing 302 V8 is ceremoniously fastened with custom motor mounts to the stock chassis. Don’t be fooled. This isn’t another Art Morrison frame with a classic body on top. There’s even a chassis number you can look up for yourself. With that sorted, a four-speed Ford AOD transmission was paired to the engine. Why? Because as Brian of Regular Car Review once said, “some call it archaic, I call it durable.” Safe to say, an engine this nice deserves a durable gearbox. This leads to a Truetrac 9-inch diff and 3.78:1 gearing

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Compacts like this 1961 Ford Falcon make first-class commuters. Here’s how I’d build it. – David Conwill @Hemmings


There are the first cars we find thrust upon ourselves and there are the first cars we choose for ourselves. The first car I chose for myself, and my fourth car overall, was a 1961 Ford Falcon Futura. What I was looking for at the time was actually a 1961 Ford Falcon Deluxe Fordor—very similar to the one with 80,000 miles that I just found in our classifieds. Thanks to their simplicity, affordability, and relationship to the early Mustang, Falcons are some of the finest collector cars for someone wanting an easy old car to own and drive.

I’m actually on the fence as to whether this is really a 1961 Falcon. There are a shockingly large number of Falcons out there registered as a different model year from what their appearance would suggest. I think this is partially a result of a lot of states still registering cars based on when they were sold, rather than model year, in the early ‘60s, and partially a result that a lot of Falcon wrecks were rebuilt over the years without regard to whether the trim and the title matched very closely.

Evidence that this is a 1961 includes the grille; evidence that it might be a ’60 with a ’61 grille includes the absence of the bright-metal side trim typically found on ’61 cars when the “Deluxe Trim and Ornamentation Package” was ordered. The white steering wheel, horn ring, and bright-metal window trim all imply that this is definitely a Deluxe Fordor of one year or another, anyway.

I’m actually on the fence as to whether this is really a 1961 Falcon. Note the side trim on this brochure image. It wasn’t used on 1960 cars.

Model year notwithstanding, any early Falcon (1960 through 1965) makes a great, low-stress old car to own. The original Thrift Power 144- or inline six in this car, if that’s what it still is, could be readily upgraded in a couple ways. The easiest way would be to find a complete six-cylinder takeout from a 1967-’69 Ford. Architecturally, it’s the same engine but boasts not only 30 to 56 more cubic inches, but also mixes in seven main bearings, a better ignition system, and the correct carburetor to go with said ignition.

The original engine isn’t totally a lost cause, however, and I’ve met at least one Falcon owner who has had great success running the dinky little 144 backed up with a Borg-Warner T-5 five-speed. Mix in an Offenhauser 3×1 adapter and a Davis Unified Ignition HEI-style distributor (last I knew, they still offered one with the skinny shaft to replace the original Ford Load-o-Matic unit) and you’d have an improved package with great fuel economy.

A third option would be to reinforce the chassis (as Ford did, starting in 1963) to accept a Windsor small-block. A mild build with a 2100-series Autolite two-barrel, dual exhausts, and Ford Duraspark II electronic ignition would motivate the lightweight Falcon easily and be a lot more readily understood by the uninitiated come resale time than a hopped-up six. Changing to a V-8 engine and transmission should also be accompanied by changing to a stronger rear axle (necessitating driveshaft changes due to the tiny U-joint used on the original Falcon unit) and likely the five-lug suspension from a 1965 Falcon equipped with a V-8. While that does increase the cost of the project significantly, it’s not a difficult proposition as the ’65 Falcon shared all those parts with the ’65 Mustang, save for the centerlink—and the Falcon-specific centerlink is reproduced for exactly this situation

The blue paint on the block and cylinder head, plus what looks like a positive crankcase ventilation system suggest that this is a later engine. That could be a boon to our potential commuter build

In the spirit of keeping it simple, however, I would probably take a mixture of the first two six-cylinder routes, potentially retaining the 144/170 if a 200 didn’t show up immediately and simply replacing the points in the Load-o-Matic with the hall-effect sensor of a Pertronix Ignitor and living with the original single Holley. I miss driving a four-speed, so I’d likely seek out a Ford “imposter” Toploader four-speed (like the muscle-car transmission, but with third gear replaced by an overdrive gear and the shifter linkage reversed to make direct drive the new third speed) or an SROD (a similar transmission, but with an integrated top shifter instead of the old levers on the side). The advantage to the imposter Toploader, in my mind, is that one could hook up the four forward gears to the old column shifter and utilize an overdrive-style T-handle under the dash to engage reverse—retaining the stock looks and simultaneously making the car harder to steal.

The Falcon chassis is perfectly adequate for what it was intended as: a commuter car. If you don’t go nuts with the power, it’s still well suited to hauling you to work, the grocery store, friends houses, etc.

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Corvette as a luxury car? One 1964 ad suggested it – Jeff Koch @Hemmimgs


America’s personal-luxury car scene exploded in the late ’50s. Studebaker’s Golden Hawk was among the first, back in ’56. Ford’s Thunderbird helped prove the market when the four-seat Squarebird came out in ’58. By 1963, Buick’s Riviera had eased onto the scene, and suddenly most car brands wanted in on this new niche. Chevrolet naturally sought a way to capitalize on the near-luxury-car game, but the Impala was too big (and the ritzy Caprice was coming for ’65 anyway), the Nova was too small, the Chevelle was brand new for the year and just finding its feet, and the Monte Carlo was half a dozen years away.

Why not try it with the Corvette? This ad is trying to convince people to see the Corvette’s softer side. It’s printed in color, but the image is a study in black-and-white contrasts. Black suit, white dress. Black pavement, white Corvette. Black tires with whitewalls. And maybe the ultimate contrast: presenting the Corvette as a luxurious proposition.

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