Build Thread Lavron's '64 Comet Budget Build

lavron

Well-known member
I am going to add a few things here and hopefully the Falcon guys will accept my Comet, if not I can move to the "Other" section.

I had some of this in my 250 engine build thread and maybe that was an inappropriate place for other work I am doing on the car, not sure this will be of interest to anyone here but if someone wants to see pictures of something I have built just let me know.

First I have a somewhat complete list of what I have done or I am doing on my 1964 Comet 2 Dr Sedan. This really is a budget build, most of the parts are from the junkyard or gleaned from the internet (new and used) some stuff would have been cheaper to just get a kit probably because I made few mistakes along the way that means I bought some stuff and couldn't use it, but if you don't make that mistake you can save money.

Lastly, I fabricate a lot of stuff, I don't have a nicely equipped shop (lucky to just get my car in out of the weather) so most stuff I build is done with hand tools and a cheap HF MIG welder (I don't make the prettiest welds, I am good with a grinder).

This is a work in progress, below is my list of parts, etc.

SUSPENSION
REAR - 4-link (Johnny Law/Hoffman Group universal kit purchased off eBay), 8.8 rear out of a '98 V8 Mercury Mountaineer with 3.73 trac-lock & disc brakes, narrowed at home to 56 3/4" by using a second passenger axle on the drivers side, Airbags (Slam Specialties SS-6 Bags), Rear Shocks from 1997 Mitsubishi Montero Sport (KYB KG4034), misc homemade brackets (upper shock mounts, etc)
FRONT - 1974 Mustang II manual R&P, MII 2" drop spindles.
crossmember (Welder Series 56.5 wide, plus homemade parts), Tubular Lower & Upper Control Arms with lower bag plates (GearHead off eBay), Airbags (Slam Specialties SS-5), Disc Brakes (pieced together including; 11” rotors, brake brackets & metric calipers from Speedway Motors), Front Shocks 1982 Checker Marathon Cab (KYB KG5404 with bar pins removed) on a custom fabricated bracket, Modified Steering column sleeve out of a floor shift early ‘60s Mustang fabricated steering shaft by cutting original from steering box and adding bearing and parts from farm supply store, Sway bar Helix 56.5" kit (HEXSBK4).
ONBOARD AIR SYSTEM - Many fittings that are push to connect (PTC) DOT certified from Bag Riders and Michigan Truck Brakes?, Manual paddle valves in a fabricated box - Tank and Compressor not purchased yet
TIRES & WHEELS - Tires Douglas Tires from Wal-Mart (P225/60R16 rear, P195/65R15 front), modifying rear wheel wells outer housing to clear, set the rear back 1-1.5“. Wheels are American Racing Torque Thrust 2 in 16x7” (4”BS) rear and 15x6” (3.5”BS) front.

BRAKES - 4 wheel disc listed above (’98 Ford Explorer & Speedway Metric), 1985 Lincoln Town Car Brake master cylinder (Cardone 13151:cool:, Wilwood portioning valve (260-8419), 3/16” Copper-Nickel brake line with self installed flare nuts

ENGINE - 250 cid inline 6 out of a '77 Maverick bored .020 over, Silv-O-Lite pistons for an Australian 250 (part 3332H+.020) rods from 1986-91 Ford Tempo/Topaz (2.5L HSC/OHV) ARP connecting Rod bolts (ARP-154-6002), Stock oil pump (Sealed Power 22441165), GMB OE replacement aluminum water pump (125-1380); Head ’72 200 cid “M” Flat Log with 1977-82 intake (1.76) and exhaust (1.3:cool: valves and hardened seats, 302 valve springs, Adjustable rocker arms from an early 144-170 Ford 6, Self made cast aluminum 3x2 intake with 3 1983 Ford Escort Carbs (Motorcraft 740/5740 progressive 2 barrel),'67-'72 250 stock timing chain set, custom fabricated rear sump oil pan, still to be determined; cam, lifters, pushrods, gaskets, distributor and bearings.

EXHAUST - Dual out stainless header (from eBay), Dual in and out Muffler for 2-2.25” or 2-2.5" pipes (Magnaflow MPE-11385 or MPE-113790).

TRANSMISSION - 1996 3.8L Mustang T-5 Borg Warner, Tag Number 1352 238 gearing; 265 3.35 1.93 1.29 1.00 0.73, Input Shaft Length & Diameter 7.85-0.668. Clutch 2002 Mustang V6 (LUK 07114) , 96 Mustang V6 3.8L bell housing, 2002 Mustang 3.8L V6 168 Tooth, zero balance Flywheel (SACHS NFW1175), ARP pressure plate bolts (ARP-134-2203) & ARP Flywheel bolts (ARP-200-2802), Home Fabricated Hydraulic clutch setup (1986 Toyota Land Cruiser master [AISIN CMT032], 1992 Isuzu Rodeo slave [Centric 139.43005]) homemade brackets, AN-3 36" braided SS hose. Aluminum Driveshaft from a 2009-11 Crown Vic Police Car.

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My '64 Comet currently

Just a sample of a couple of thing I have fabricated;

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T5 transmission mount, might hang a little low and I may redo it someday but it is made from 1/2" steel bar.

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MII with air bags, this is at ride hight, I am changing the way the sway bar is mounted I think it hangs too low.

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The rear 4 link with air bags (bags are not installed in the picture)

I do have a build thread over on Comet Central forum but I can add some stuff here if anyone wants the references.

See Ya,
Mike
 

lavron

Well-known member
bmbm40":a0kjge3j said:
Not a lot left you could do to it. Awesome project you are building.

Thanks, I am enjoying it, I wish I had a better equipped shop but if I waited until I didi I would never get anything done.

Here is the clutch slave cylinder and mount on the T-5 bell housing.
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And I mocked my '68 T-Bird buckets in the car so I could check if the shifter location was good, it is IMO, getting ready to build permanent seat mounts and locate my floor emergency brake and the air bag paddle valves (currently one of the things I am working on)
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See Ya,
Mike
 

lavron

Well-known member
Repaired this NOS DS1 distributor today, I bought it off eBay a while back expecting it to be a DS2 but it is not, it had an odd part "number" scrawled on the side.
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It appears to have once had a designation "number" added I can make out the first and last letters to be S an T with what appears to be two letter/numbers in the middle, maybe "hi" or "h1" :roll:

Eventhough I believe this a brand new distributor (it certainly appears to be) the breaker plate was completely seized up on the breaker plate base, it almost looked like someone tried to pry it off without first removing the snap ring, I had to tap it back down and remove the snap ring and then basically pry the breaker plate off, the center part was gummed up with something, maybe some kind of hardened grease, I cleaned it with some fine wet or dry 220 sandpaper and brake cleaner, got it operating smoothly and applied a little lithium grease to the mount and reassembled everything.
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I cleaned the case up and removed all the extraneous markings in the process, everything appears to operational and smooth rotating now when I suck on the vacuum advance port. I am not sure what cap and rotor to use but I think it is just a the regular load-o-matic cap, I looked up a '74 Maverick 250 on RockAuto and they showed the OEM part number as F2111 and it looked like a regular cap.

I think I will build my own ignition box using a 4 pin HEI module once I run down the directions again :roll:

See Ya,
 

powerband

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The DS I (1) Distributor used the same 'Points cap and wires as you mention. the DS II moved to the larger (blue) cap with Pin terminals requiring different plugwires as well, also retains the 'early' look if desired. Points ignition or DS I seemed to be determined by DSO origin. Mavs' may be points thru @ 74. The 'dual' diaphragm emissions distrib inner vac chamber is left open for max advance.

Under the advance plate you can see tthe maximum advance window stamped @ 13 - 22 ( X 2 crank rpm...



in
have fun
 

bubba22349

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Nice work Mike, so you can use a DuraSpark I cap and rotor or the 1968 to 74 point cap and rotor they look the same. Or you can get the stock DuraSpark II cap adapter, wide cap, rotor, and wire set it will all fit right on. (y) :nod:
 

Econoline

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Like said, you can go with a DSI set up or convert to a DSII wide cap, the distributor itself is the same. :beer:
 

lavron

Well-known member
Guess it has been a while since I posted any progress, short block still at machine shop, I have a call in to the guy for a progress report and have not heard back yet.

In the mean time I have been working on several things, I got my console started and got the e-brake handle mounted as well as the air ride valve box and found a place for the fuse boxes to live.
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I replaced my front core support and right front inner fender (battery tray) on the car with ones from my parts car.
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And got my shock tower holes covered with some steel plates (13 gauge) I cut out and bent up.
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Trying to get the jewel box done before my gem shows back up :p

Soon I am going to strip the car back down an flip it up on it's side and clean up the bottom, check all the welds and re-weld anything that needs it before painting the bottom of the car.

I will get there eventually I hope.

See Ya,
Mike
 

lavron

Well-known member
Just a quick update. While waiting on the motor to eventually get done I have been working on getting my gas tank and trunk floor done.

I am putting a '69-'70 Mustang 22 gallon tank in and my floor is in terrible shape (was) after doing a bunch of different patches with whatever scrap metal I had laying around I went and bought a 4'X8' sheet of 18 gauge steel and made a new trunk floor.
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Not too bad considering I don't have the proper equipment to do this, like sheet metal break :roll: do most of my bending using my 16' trailer and some pieces of angle iron clamped to it.

I also made a new back for my driveshaft tunnel because the air ride system, when lowered the driveshaft and floor were really close to touching. I bent the original floor up to meet the replacement floor. I am not putting a back seat in my car, BTW.
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Everything is just screwed in right now because it has been entirely too hot to weld and I need to make a few pieces of under structure for the trunk floor.

Bunch of other stuff I have done as well but this is supposed to be a quick update :p

See Ya,
Mike
 

bubba22349

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The Floor sheet metal repair work looks very good Mike! Did you need to mini tub the rear wheel wells for wheel / tire clearance? (y) :nod:
 

lavron

Well-known member
bubba22349":1l3vp4uy said:
The Floor sheet metal repair work looks very good Mike! Did you need to mini tub the rear wheel wells for wheel / tire clearance?

Thanks, I am actually replacing the outer wheel tubs the inner ones are fine, the outer ones (which are rusty anyway) touch when the car lowers because of the curve at the top of the wheel well, I could have used a slightly different wheel offset and been fine, my tires are not terribly wide (225/60R16) so the plans currently are to use a trailer fender and mod it to fit for the outer well.

The main reason for the trunk floor replacement was rust and then installing the triangulated 4-link and air bags, but most of that would have worked under the stock floor but because it was rusty I cut most of it out.

See Ya,
Mike
 

lavron

Well-known member
I got the driveshaft hump welded in today so now to get the trunk floor finished.
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See Ya,
Mike
 

lavron

Well-known member
I got all my trunk floor welded in, still need to grind some welds and get it all primed.
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I installed my air tank (mocked it up) an located where the compressor was going to live and got a bracket welded in for the compressor.
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I took out my rear window in the process and did not damage it, I was happy all the metal looked good around the window so I don't have any repairs there.
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Going to mock in the rest of the air ride system and get my rear bags back in the car so I can get it off the jack stands.

Still waiting on more motor stuff to happen, in the mean time I have plenty of other stuff to do.

See Ya,
Mike
 

lavron

Well-known member
While waiting on the head to return I have not been idle, I completely stripped the car back apart, pulled all the glass, suspension and interior.

In the process right now of repairing rust. As most of you probably know, there are no replacement body panels for a '64 Comet so your choice is finding a good set of used replacements or making your own, I did a little of both. I have a parts car that has earned it's status, there is not much good on that car (I bought it for the front core support) the rear quarters were pretty bad but I got to studying and decided I could use them to fabricate some patch panels for my car. I know most people would not do this :p
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(I know this is the left rear quarter but the right is the same or a bit better condition) The lip opening itself is made from a piece of new 18 gauge steel

This is the bad stuff on my car, I cut down my "patch panel" and clamped it up on the car. (the red line indicates how much of the patch panel I used)
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Then I cut all the rust out and welded the patch panel on along with a couple I had to make that were bad on both cars. (the patches are cut from parts of the quarters I did not use in the first picture)
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Slow and easy welding, cooled with a damp sponge and I didn't get any warping. made a final patch to the rear and threw a little temporary coating on it as I wait to do the body filler.
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Next will be the other side, I started it today (the patch is made already)

When I flip the car up I will build the inner fender parts I need to make, my replacement panel I welded a 1/4" steel rod around the wheel opening (bent them from old truck jack handle cranks) so I can have a thinner profile so hopefully I will be able to get my rear tires off and on, instead of rolling the fender lip.

See Ya,
Mike
 

lavron

Well-known member
bmbm40":2b64k3ls said:
Nice work.

Thanks.

Built a "redneck" rotisserie and rolled the Comet over on it's side so I could get the bottom cleaned up and repair my torque boxes, and check all my welds and generally pretty everything up and get it painted.

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I have cleaned and checked the welds on the right rear, cleaned the bottom some with a wire knotted brush in the angle grinder and I am currently building a set of subframe connectors.

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As soon as these are done and welded in I am going to get the outer wheel wells replaced with some custom ones I am building that will allow the car to settle over the air bags without touching the tires (plus they had some rust) and get the replacement bottoms welded into the front torque boxes. After those are done I am going to roll it the other way to finish the frame rails on the opposite sides before painting the whole thing and running fuel and brake lines.

Hopefully soon I will be bolting the car back together for the final time.

See Ya,
Mike
 

bubba22349

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:wow: Mike great job on building your own rotisserie, lots of great progress on the Comet too! I am sure enjoying your build and can't wait to hear how well it drives and handles. Good luck (y) :nod:
 

lavron

Well-known member
bubba22349":notks1lk said:
:wow: Mike great job on building your own rotisserie, lots of great progress on the Comet too! I am sure enjoying your build and can't wait to hear how well it drives and handles. Good luck (y) :nod:

Thanks Bubba, rolling the car up was probably one of the better ideas I have had, I know it seems a bit like overkill but when you are a marginal welder, like me, you need all the advantage you can get :p and I want a safe car I can have confidence in and I have done a lot of modification/fabrication that needs checked and touched up.

Here are a series of pictures of what I have gotten done so far in the week it has been tipped up.

I got the subframe connectors all welded in (top side)
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Figured out where the fuel pump was going to live and welded a mount bolt in for it.
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Got my rear wheel wells all fabricated and welded in.
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Repaired the left front torque box.
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And I have a done a lot of cleanup and weld touchup on the front crossmember with the last thing I got started bending and welding an end cap on the crossmember.
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A couple of other things and I will be ready to roll it the other way and get this part finished up so I can get it back upright.

See Ya,
Mike
 

lavron

Well-known member
I have flipped the Comet up the other way and I am almost finished welding everything that is there (ran out of shielding gas and need to get more), need to fab up the exhaust system, re-do my e-brake brackets and run my fuel and brake lines and then I will be ready to prime (using Eastwood Rust Encapsulator), seam seal and paint the bottom with bed liner.
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All of it seems to be working out for me, I am really happy with it, been fighting with mounting the front sway bar to clear everything, not a lot of room up there to miss the tie rod ends and air bags but I will get it licked (running an 7/8"-1" sway bar that was already on the car, so stock style for a '64 Comet)

I am probably over welding everything but I want to make sure everything is well attached :p sometimes I make really good welds like the upper left one in this picture where I welded on the sway bar bracket, I am just not very consistent (the messy part in the middle of that weld is where I tacked it on initially).
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As soon as I can get this painted and flipped back up I can start bolting it back together and concentrate on the motor.

See Ya,
Mike
 
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