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Reinforcing the Falcon Unibody -- Boss Modifications

Moderator: Mod Squad

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CoupeBoy
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Reinforcing the Falcon Unibody -- Boss Modifications

Post #1 by CoupeBoy » Tue Mar 24, 2015 5:34 pm

Shock tower stresses and cracks are fairly common on their own, and when Ford was hitting their stride in the Trans Am Racing series they added additional bracing to the lower portion of the shock tower, commonly called Boss modifications, to really take the abuse of road racing.

There are a few articles on the internet of people doing these modifications to Mustangs, I've posted this one on here before.
Building Export Brace -- FordSix Forum

They typically look like this once welded in place.
normal_2010-08-15_-_Shock_Tower_Reinforcement_001.jpg

From another website, this is how the installation goes together.
Shock tower reinforcement - Day 2 -- StangFix.com
It is his description that makes me want to do it..
Well, after two days of toil in hot weather, I finally got my shock towers stripped and my shock tower reinforcement plates installed... mostly.

I started with a Pro-motorsports reinforcement kit for the 65 Mustang and after A LOT of messaging, I finally got it looking half-way good. Each piece had to be heavily modified to even come close and even then, there are pretty large gaps at the bottom of the wrap-a-round pieces. In order to make the setup a little stronger and to ease installation, I drilled 1/2" holes in the 1/8" plates and spot welded each piece to the tower. Next step is to stitch weld the top and bottom joints. I would have completed the job today but I ran out of welding wire.

Lesson learned:
•I should have sourced the metal myself and done this.. but cutting out the 1/8" steel would have been a pain in the ass.
•I know it's hard to get a pre-fabbed kit like this to fit every car, but I had to do a lot of re-bending and forming to get these pieces to fit right
•My welder, a Millermatic 211, kicks major ass. It did everything that I need it to and it makes spot welds like a champ
•I don't think I'll ever willingly want to do this ever again.. :barf
You can buy Mustang Kits though places like Opentracker Racing Products
Shock tower repair/ reinforcement kit (1967-1970) $199
or
Pro-Motorsports
Mustang Shock Tower Repair/Reinforcement Kit $219.65 (plus $65 for 65/66 -- ouch)

But I'd never seen a kit or that anybody had done it to an early Falcon until yesterday when I was reading a thread on TFFN.net
Craig510 -- 1963 Falcon Futra 500 -- TRFN.net

These are the braces he used on the inside of the shock tower, all made from 1/8" CRS plate.
Image
The first layer in place
Image
He ground the welds flat and added a second layer.
Image
And hid it all under a layer of black paint.
Image

I hit a URL limit, grr..
You do not have the required permissions to view the files attached to this post.
1968 Mustang Daily Driver Rebuild (on hold for the Season 3/1/2015)
1963.5 Falcon Convertible Build (just getting started 3/15/2015)
Case 1830 Skidsteer FordSix Repower Thread (started 4/4/2015)
1970 170/C4
1967 200/C4
1965 240/bellhousing/flywheel/clutch/3.03 bell pattern
1975 250/flexplate
1975 300/flywheel

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CoupeBoy
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Posts: 3439
Joined: Fri Nov 08, 2002 12:17 am
Location: Fargo, ND
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Re: Reinforcing the Falcon Unibody -- Boss Modifications

Post #2 by CoupeBoy » Tue Mar 24, 2015 5:36 pm

The outside bracket went on like this to strengthen the new lowered Upper Control Arm mount bolts.
Image
Ground down and painted black
Image
Much later in his build he added the outer shock tower brace below the UCA mount. His looks a little different than a standard kit because he moved his bump stop from the outer shock/spring cover plate which would hit the UCA ball joint bump, to a point on the LCA.
Image

So with all this information in hand, I think I'll use the his installation as a guide, but I will pattern my own kit after the '65 mustang kit, with longer brace plates where the UCA bolts on. I'll also add the wrap around braces and the L-brackets on the front and rear.

If anybody had more information or another thread on an installation like this, I'd appreciate it.
1968 Mustang Daily Driver Rebuild (on hold for the Season 3/1/2015)
1963.5 Falcon Convertible Build (just getting started 3/15/2015)
Case 1830 Skidsteer FordSix Repower Thread (started 4/4/2015)
1970 170/C4
1967 200/C4
1965 240/bellhousing/flywheel/clutch/3.03 bell pattern
1975 250/flexplate
1975 300/flywheel

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