Jon H 1964 Ford Mustang 2dr Convertible

The airport car gets a new pilot, son of the original

Back in 1964 my dad was flying 707's for Pan Am. He had been driving a 1949 Chevy Delux. But that is another story...(the one that got away!) Any way, life got really fun when he brought home that 64 Mustang. He put the top down and we piled in; my dad and mom in the front and some of my siblings in the back. I probably got the hump middle seat as i was only nine years old at the time. We drove to a restaurant called The Plumed Horse. When we drove up, that car got a lot of attention.

The years went by and that old mustang was a multi-pupose car. Dad always drove it to San Francisco Airport when he went out on a trip. All the kids enjoyed driving it to high school when they could (with the top down of course). My brother seemed to get the most performance out of that six banger. He hit 90 mph going down hill on a neighborhood stretch of road that rarely saw a car manage 50. The speed limit is 35 mph. He spun out twice while i was a passenger. I drove the Mustang to Yosemite. The clutch was going out when we returned and i had to throw the bridge toll coins to the man as we chugged through in first gear. We hit cars, trees, deer and who knows what else. My dad did five clutch jobs and had the transmission overhauled three times. Earl Scheib put a paint job on it but by then it was not $29.95. The kids all left the nest. My dad worked on that car up to about age 85. He passed away in 2008 at 88. The mustang mostly sat in the garage and was registered only as non-operational. My brother and i would start it every once in awhile and sneak it out onto the neighborhood stretch of road but stayed under the limit of 35 mph. The tires were brown and cracked. Eventually it would not start. Mice moved in.....

About a year ago a friend suggested with his connections and skill set we could breath new life into the Mustang. And so we did. We removed the seats and the mice nests, we removed the six banger and three speed transmission and poor clutch that labored all those years with that tall first gear. Out with the four lug hubs and spindles, the sagging leaf springs and coils, the drum brakes, the cracked oversized steering wheel, the old rear end, old fuel lines and brake lines, exhaust went a 289 with a four barrel carb, four speed transmition and new clutch, new interior and dash, new top, power steering, front disc brakes, new suspension, new rear end, pony mag wheels and new non brown tires and some new gauges.

It still needs body work and a new paint job, but it is "on the road again" as Willy would say.

Well, fifty years later, the pilot's son can drive it to the airport to go his trip. And that car still gets a lot of attention!

I could easily hit 90 mph on that neighborhood stretch, but then that would be crazy wouldn't it?

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