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1986 Coupe

We'll, I've done it again. I felt motivated to try and save this old coupe. My brother-in-law had it. It has been parked outside for many years. The lower radiator support is rusted, as are both doors and one spot in a lower quarter panel... just in front of the rear driver's side wheel. It's originally a 4 cyl, but has no motor or transmission. The interior is still full of ants, stray cat excrement, trash, and old spare parts. Most of the interior (red) is still there. From what I could see, the floor pans and shock towers are ok.

First, I had to hook up a tow strap and pull it out of the mud.

Next, I put some new shoes on her. I had some 10-hole wheels lying around. I got a couple decent tires off a buddy and 2 new ones from the tire shop. The old tires were absolutely done.

Got it home later that day. Took the pressure washer to it to remove the years of crud.

And that's where I am at this point. I'm back to work for 28 days. I'm hell-bent on getting the pace car on the road when I get home as well as getting the 88 hood painted and 5-lug swap done. However, I'm going to at least tackle stripping the seats and carpet out of this thing so I can get a better look.
I managed to score a few parts to get this thing looking like a car again. A set of doors, hood, and front nose/ bumper cover. The hood, although not rusted, is a little beat up. I was really wanting to go with an 82gt-style hood with with the scoop. A buddy decided to sell some of his parts, which included an 82gt hood with scoop and matching bumper cover, complete with lower air dam. I haven't decided whether or not I'll use the nose piece, but I'm definitely going with the hood. The price was just too good to pass up. Plus, you never know when I might need some of this stuff for my 82gt (if I ever get around to starting on it lol).
Thanks, photobucket, for ruining the internet. Sorry about the pics. I'll eventually post some more. But I thought I would update this with a few minor touches. The car did not come with a set of keys. I ordered a complete nos lock cylinder kit. I drilled out the ignition cylinder and replaced it. Also, I managed to get the trunk open and remove the lock cylinder. I had a locksmith rekey the new trunk lock cylinder to match the new door cylinders. I just have to install them.

Another thing I did was take the driver's rear brake shoes off. The wheel was completely locked up. I can now roll it and steer it. This is important because I spoke to a neighbor buddy who's going to replace the floor pans and lower core support for me. I've been working way too much lately, so I decided I would farm out some work to keep things moving along.
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Have you done anything else to this one?
I've been wishing I had the time and money to start working on my '84 coupe.

Is the thread title a typo? Or has the front bumper been previously changed? The pics show an '83-'84 front bumper cover. Not an '85-'86 cover.
Good eye! Yes, the front bumper has been changed. Currently, a buddy/neighbor just down the road from me is working on replacing the floor pans. I have a motor in the machine shop now. They did all the machine work and assembled the short block. I have most everything to assemble it (intake, headers, timing cover, etc. I need a gasket set, oil pump, oil pan and heads (that last one is a big one, of course). I hope to start updating this thread more this summer. The motor is a 351w stroked to 408 with forged rotating assembly. Still planning on using a 4 speed toploader transmission. Should be a fun car when it's finished, but it's a slow process with a couple other projects going on.
Just to update this thread, my neighbor is slowly replacing floors. He's just working on it here and there in his spare time. I told him no hurry, since I already have too much on my plate as is.

But on the parts-collecting/plannig front, I have been doing some work. I keep changing my mind on transmission choices. I've been back and forth on the toploader/c4 idea. I finally decided that the amount of power in planning on making will test the limits of both. I spoke to my buddy and his dad today. They're the transmission gurus around here and it just so happens they're die-hard Ford guys. It looks like I'll either be going with an upgraded 4r70w (manual vb or electronic controller) or AOD with 4r70w internals.

I hope to be starting on body work and paint later this summer, along with picking up a set of heads and oil pan for the 408w. If everything goes as planned, I'll have it at the track next spring. Of course, nothing ever goes as planned around here.
Forgot to add that I'm picking up a good used Kirkley knock-off aluminum seat tomorrow on my way to visiting family in VA. On my way back, I'll be picking up a low-mileage roller 351w. No plans for it at the moment, but I'm sure I'll figure out something one of these days.
On one hand, I'm looking forward to getting it back. On the other, it's getting pretty hard to juggle vehicles around at the house. Throwing another heap in the mix that doesn't move under its own power doesn't help one bit. I'll have 5 foxes, an old bronco, my truck, the wife's car, and both the step sons have suv's. I need to buy or build me a shop. If I could find a place close to the house, I'd probably jump on it, but property is ridiculous around here. I can find cheaper land, but I'd be better off just parking them on the side of the road and letting the thieves have at it. I'm seriously considering selling the 88gt.
I bit the bullet and got a bunch of parts to finish up the motor. Heads (Promaxx 60cc 210 intake runners...more on these later), oil pan/pick-up, oil pump, gaskets, water pump. Everything is sitting at the house waiting on me to get back in town and start wrenching.

More on these heads:
I did a lot of research here. I planned on going with AFR 205 58cc. I just couldn't justify spending that kind of money ($2100). I was also looking at similar Edelbrock heads...Vic Jr 210, iirc. The price was better at around $1600, but the flow numbers were noticeably worse than the AFR's. I've been looking at these promaxx heads for a while and really wanted to take a chance with them. Although I'm presuming a Chinese casting, Promaxx is located in Alabama and has a great customer service reputation. I believe they are assembled here in the US. Flow numbers appear to be similar to the AFR and same price as the Edelbrock. These are the CNC version (Shocker Series) and are supposed to be nicer than the cheaper "as cast" heads. Promaxx is, I believe, formerly "Patriot". My research on the Patriot heads show some good reviews and it looks like Promaxx is following the same route, with more good reviews concerning performance and quality control.

Not trying to sell you guys on off-brand heads... just explaining my reasoning here. I feel they're actually a pretty good company. You can check them out on FB, if you're interested.
My buddy is still working on floor pans. He's just doing a little here and there. I believe I may go ahead and order an 8-point roll cage.

Do any of you have any suggestions? I really don't know much about them. I see Summit sells Rhodes Racing. I can get a mild steel 1 3/4" 8 pt cage delivered for around $300. I saw someone in one of my local FB groups suggesting them. I'm not sure about quality. Jegs has their version for (iirc) around $375 before shipping and most of the reviews I read said that fitment wasn't great. Of course, I don't really expect fitment to be great on any type of cage. They're basically a cut and weld to fit kinda deal.
Not sure on the Rhodes roll cage. I've never actually heard of them.
But I've always heard good stuff and fitment for the Maximum Motorsports cages. You might even could take a look at Team Z, Wolfe Racecraft, or Wild Rides for cages as well
Also I believe that a cage is one of the areas that you wouldn't want to... um... "cheap out" on.

I've heard decent stuff from the p
Promaxx heads as well. Though not too many reports of how they've actually performed compared to the more well known brands. I might have read that they are copies of the Edelbrock Vic Jrs or the like.
Make sure the springs are up to the challenge for the cam, rockers, and planned rpm.
I haven't heard about any valve guide or deal failures on those as I have the old Pro Comp heads.
It looks like the MM cages are all DOM. The Rhodes are available in mild steel, DOM, or chromoly. I'm not exactly sure what DOM is and whether or not I need it. It doubles the price of the Rhodes cage. Both manufacturers use 1 3/4" tubing. The Rhodes is 8pt while the MM is 6pt. I guess I'm going to have to dive in and start researching again. I'll do that till my head starts spinning, as usual lol! Just like the heads I chose!
After some reading, it looks like DOM is basically a rating that covers a lot of different materials... including most mild steel. From what I gather, both will work well. The DOM is obviously stronger, but also more brittle and doesn't provide much "give" in the event of a crash. I know it seems counterproductive for a cage to bend, but a harder, more brittle cage can crack or break. The chromoly steel is even harder and more brittle. Not arguing that stronger isn't better, so don't get me wrong. From what I'm understanding, both will provide similar protection. In the event of a crash, the DOM or Chromoly cage will most likely show damage in the area of impact, while the mild steel will likely transfer throughout the rest of the cage. So more damage, but also more absorbing of energy.

Hope that helps you guys!