Mustang Indy 500 Pace Car 1964 1/2

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Here’s a 1964 1/2 Mustang Indianapolis 500 Pace Car. This car has been in the customers family since the early 70’s It was later found to be an Original Indy Pace Car, The paint code and some special options gave it away. The car is the shop for a New Paint Job. Indy White of course!

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The Mustang has some area that need to be investigated, the cracks in this rocker panel indicate heavy bondo filler. This will need to be ground down to metal and corrected. The cracks in the upper passenger quarter look to be stress. These areas need fixed during the bodywork phase.

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This Mustang has had some work on the drivers quarter. It was replaced at some point, the job looks clean, but there are little cracks that need to be investigated and fixed. we want this car to look factory new, so we cant have little cracks coming back.

The Mustang has some areas that need attention, the rear window has been held in with Duct Tape for a while. The tape is pulling the paint off the car, so these areas will need to be sanded to base metal.

The car has to be pulled apart to be able to paint it correctly. Lights, bumpers, trim, door handles and everything. The pieces need to be painted individually. After the car is pulled apart the body work will get started.

Even the front section is pulled all the way apart. The hood, trunk and other parts will come off after the body work is complete. The exterior is almost all apart. Next up is digging a little deeper into the areas with cracks.

We started by grinding down some areas close to the trunk lid. Some cracks were as simple as body filler cracks, while others are rust. We still need to get rid of all the cracks and make sure there’s nothing serious.

Now that the paint is removed, we find the seem where the new quarter panel was installed. There was lots of dirt and rust in this area, some new metal to remove rusted areas will be required. Looking close there are some holes to fill. This area may be the most difficult.

The interior needs to be taken apart to make sure the paint gets done right. The door jambs, dash and steering column will get painted before the outside gets painted. The interior is also removed so the sanding dust can be cleaned out easier.

The headliner and door panels are all removed. The interior will get cleaned up before the Owner puts in the new pieces. The car is in for a paint job and then a headliner. A New Dash will also get installed before we’re done.

The old dash was removed so we can get paint everywhere it needs to go. The hood had some old paint that needed to be removed with a razor blade. Some of the old paints are impossible to sand off.

Now that the first layer of paint is razored off the hood, we can start smoothing things out with a sander. Taking most of the paint off of certain areas will help with the bodywork. The drivers rear quarter is getting a pretty good work out, the seam is being smoothed and the bodywork started.

The hood is smooth, but its far from flat. You can see high and low spots that show up while sanding. The passenger front needs lots of work, this fender is really wavy.

The rear quarter is starting to look pretty good. It will take more bodywork to get it perfect. As good as a car looks, it could always use more bodywork. To get a good paint job requires smoothing the whole body, to get a great paint job requires smoothing and blocking…then doing it again.

The bodywork continues on the Mustang Coupe, we are taking the paint off to eliminate any cracks or future problems. The body looked pretty good to start with, we are finding little patches of bondo and filler in different areas.

The area on the fender and the rear quarter has a little body filler. we will remove it to make sure the body is pulled out as much as possible. This will eliminate the filler from being too thick and possible cracking.

The Mustang had some cracks in the rocker panel, so upon closer investigation we found some very thick bondo. Looks like a large dent being covered up, the bondo is removed to uncover how serious this problem is.

Here’s a couple more shots to show how thick the filler really is. It looks as thou the rocker panel will need to be replaced. This is a pretty rare car, repairing the rocker panel doesn’t make much sense. A new panel will keep a better value for this car.

The rocker panel for the Mustang needs to be removed. In order to gain access, we needed to remove the passenger door and the front fender. This will give us access to the factory spot welds.

The amount of spot welds in a single rocker…crazy, we are drilling out the spot welds. The new piece will be welded into place from behind the original spot welds, this will give it a smoother overall finish.

The rocker panel on the 64 1/2 mustang is almost all removed, the work required to remove it and get the car ready for the New Rocker Panel is pretty extensive.

This is the interior rocker panel area. The new piece will be welded into place and be as good as new. This is a little more work than pulling the old piece straight, but you would never get it right. The object is to never have the body filler thicker than 1/8″ in any given area.

The Mustang rocker panel is fitted and all clamped into place, this takes lots of time to get it to fit exactly like the original. These after market metal parts are never a perfect fit without some effort.

Once the metal rocker was clamped into place, we welded all the original spot welds back like they were and got the clamps removed. The passenger rocker panel already looks so much better.

With a little seam sealer, light weight filler and some gray primer, the rocker panel is good as new! Now we can get things back on track and continue with the bodywork.

Now it’s time to start the serious bodywork, the Mustang needed the passenger rocker panel fixed before we could start the whole body work process.

The drivers fender and door area gets started first, we need to work our way around the outside and get the car roughed in. This is a process where you pull small dents and apply any needed filler to get the car looking good.

The Mustang is now in full swing, the bodywork can be done all around the car until its ready for primer.

The 64 1/2 Mustang is getting the heavy bodywork out of the way. All the filler you see on the car is put on in thin layers and worked until the areas are straight. This process is not the most exciting, but it’s what gives you a really great paint job.

The bodywork continues on the 64 1/2 Mustang, this is the rough in stage. Once the major bodywork is all done, the car will get Epoxy Sealer applied and the next stage will start.

Good bodywork takes time, the car will be straighter than ever once we get finished. The cost of a great quality paint job is expensive, the hours of labor plus the expense of paint take most of the dollars spent.

The roof on the 64 1/2 Mustang is the next big area that needs work. After stripping off the old layers we can see the bodywork is pretty straight forward. Many many little dents to fix, but nothing major. 

Just like the rest of the car, we will skim coat the entire roof with Body Filler, then start the long process of getting everything smooth and flat. The before and after shows just how important this step is. We always try to do any Hammer and Dolly work to get the areas as close as possible, then the skim coat phase.

The Pace Car is almost ready for a heavy coat of Primer. The booth is occupied, so it will be going in real soon.

This part of the paint job is a good sign, it means all the heavy bodywork is over.

Once we get the heavy coats of primer applied the final sanding process will begin. The body feels straight, but fine sanding with various blocks will get this Pace Car really straight.

The Mustang is in the booth and has its first coat of Primer Sealer applied. The car already looks really good.

The entire outside of the Mustang gets a Seal Coat. The body looks great, really straight.

The roof of the Mustang Pace Car is really flat and straight, the major portion of bodywork is finished. 

Next up for the Mustang is time to let the primer sealer cure. After the sealer is dry the Mustang will be blocked sanded until all the imperfections are gone.

The Mustang Pace Car is un-taped and curing outside the booth. The car can get worked on in the next week or so, you don’t want to rush the cure time. The next stage is to start block sanding the car until it is smooth and straight.

The Mustang Pace Car needs to have the Interior dash and door jambs painted. The Interior needs to be cleaned up before we can start to sand and prep the areas.

The seats have been taken out and any old carpet removed, the floors will be cleaned so removing sanding dust will be easier. There’s a lot of sanding that has to be done to get these areas ready.

The interior is all stripped out and being cleaned up. The seats will go over to the Upholstery shop and get torn down. All the old materials will get thrown out and new upholstery installed.

The interior is getting cleaned up and almost ready, you can see where it looks like something was living in the floor wells.

The hat tray area has been taken apart and the speakers removed. This is a collection of original carpet, headliner and insulation that was removed.

The 64  1/2 Mustang is being painted the Original Pace Car White. The deck lid and hood need to be painted on the back side, the seals are protected with tape and the panels prepped sanded.

The hood has been sanded and ready for paint. The pieces are setup in the booth tacked off and ready to spray.

The 64 1/2 Mustang Pace Car is prepped rolled into the booth and ready to be sprayed.   The jamb areas will be painted original Pace Car white just like the outside. 

The door jambs are sanded smooth. The dash was the most difficult part to get ready for paint. It took time to get the car to this point, the dash has so many curves and is difficult to tape off.

The interior painting is just as important as the outside, the areas are sanded smooth, blemishes removed and masked off to prevent over spray.

Ok, the Mustang Pace Car White has been applied and the color looks great! The paint will be given time to dry before the car is unmasked. This Mustang is getting closer to having the exterior done.

The doors have an interior panel that gets inserted in the door. Now that the interior areas have been painted, the outside will be finish sanded and ready for paint.

The dash came out great! the paint should look very seamless, continuous to the exterior. This car is a rare item, getting the details just right are important to keeping the value.

The paint for this Mustang was a little difficult to find, pace car white was only used on these models. This car will always hold its value as long as the integrity of the work being done is top notch.

The mustang seats are ready to be taken apart and get New Upholstery. We will start with the rear seat, the Original cotton looks to be in pretty good shape.

The seat cover went on pretty good, these pre-made covers fit prety good, but there not the same as hand made custom Upholstery.

The front buckets are covered with several seat covers. Once we take these covers off we will remove all the old foam. There are companies that repoduce the foam for these seat, so we will replace all the materials.

The seat cover fit really tight, it took so much work to get these covers over the new foam. I feel sorry for the guy trying to put these on in his garage. It took steam and a lot of stretching to put these covers on.

Here’s what’s going on with the 1964 1/2 Mustang, the body looked pretty good, but it wasn’t up to our standards. The bodywork has to be great, otherwise the paint will reflect everything. We want it right!

The Mustang Pace Car is painted, the color is Original to Indy Pace Cars only. The color is a single stage and looks great!

The car is all painted and the front valance pieces as well. We still have some interior and exterior pieces that will need to be painted next.

The Mustang Pace Car  is sitting idle, we need the paint to cure before we start to buff it out. While it cures, we can start some of the interior pieces. The headliner can go in and maybe some  outside parts can get bolted in place.

Headliners are never easy, when you make it yourself you have creative control. If you install something that was made in a factory, you never know how things are going to fit. This one seems a little tight to begin with.

The dash pad can also go in, the blue is a factory correct color for the 64 1/2 Mustang. It still need to be bolted in place, but with things apart and no front windshield it goes in pretty smoothly.

The Interior of the 64 1/2 Mustang Pace car is being installed. The insulation and carpet went in first, then the rear panels and seats. It’s starting to look like a car again.

The Original Interior in this Mustang was white. The Owners want to bring this car back to it’s Original condition. There’s still plenty of little details that need to be finished before this car is done.

The 64 1/2 Mustang pace car is getting close to being done. The bumpers and trim are pretty much all back together, the interior has some details left to be assembled.

The Mustang Pace Car is finished, this project was more than just a paint job. It started out is body and paint, it ended up as body paint and Interior work. The car looks amazing, keep checking back to see the end results after it get’s the vinyl graphics.

 

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