Robs Stupid '68 Mercury Cougar Land Page

 

This is Robs Stupid Cougar Page documenting my progress in the year 2001. It is Stupid.

March 5, 2001. It has been awhile since I have thought about Cougar stuff, but now that it is warming up outside, it is time to get rid of the C6 in favor of a toploader.

Most of the things on my car are pretty easy to work on, but the headers add a bunch of difficulty points to anything they are in the way of. In this case, the headers are in the way of pulling the tranny, so I had to remove the headers. To remove the headers, I had to undo the motor mounts, etc.

Nice pic of the rear of the motor getting ready for a new tranny.

You can see what a production this is. The C6 bellhousing is not removable, so I have to raise the whole car up to get it out from underneath. I am using 4 jacks, an engine hoist to stabilize the motor when the tranny is removed, 2 car ramps, lots of bricks, and even more patience. About 15 hours into it, I am almost ready to install the tranny. Too tired tonight though. Looks really cute up on blocks though.

Im planning on telling my neighbors that Im waiting for a huge glass dome for a full sized display.

March 20, 2001. The toploader went in pretty easy. I dont have pics of the actual installation of the 4 speed, but I do have a whole page of stuff relating to the hydraulic clutch setup.

A whole page of hydraulic clutch stuff.

May 10, 2001. The pearly metallic paint looks good in the pics, but it is far from perfect, and Im ready to make it right. I plan on painting it a non-metallic, non-pearly color that should be much easier to get right. This time, Im going to completely disassemble before painting.

The back half and roof was pretty easy. I even detailed the taillights while they were off

Back half looks pretty good.

May 22, 2001. The rear has been painted, now time to do the front.

Stripping down the front now.

Doors and cowl are done now.

Fenders back on

Doors back on too!!

June 04, 2001. All done reassembling after painting. I got a couple runs I have to rub out, but it is very happy with the new color and so am I.

Just got done reassembling after painting it brilliant blue. I painted the grills on the taillights gloss black while I was at it. Looks pretty sweet.

I think I am going to paint the front grills black also. It made the back look so much better, couldnt hurt the front.

June 10, 2001. My Cougar is one of those that have the sequential blinkers. In 68, it took a collection of several relays, complicated switches, and even one with a motor on it. My main problems came from the switch with the motor on it turning too slow, and the main relay that has about 20 wires on it. Replacing the motor in the motorized switch, and cleaning the contacts in the relay helps for awhile, but Im not crazy about by blinkers not working perfectly.

I got tired of the blinkers mostly working, so I built a microprocessor board to replace the 4 relays and motorized sequencer box. It plugs in the existing harness. I used an Atmel AT90S1200 RISC CPU to control all the logic, so later I can make it do some cool stuff.

The microprocessor board installed in the car, but not tucked away.

Later I realized that the front blinkers need their own transistors to keep them from coming on when hitting the brakes. Addind an 8th transistor and reprogramming the CPU was pretty easy.

Since I was building a new dash panel with new gauges, I ran a cable from the CPU board to 6 LEDs in the dash to show the blinker and brake light action. I didnt realize it when I built the board, but when a bulb burns out, or comes loose, the residual current is just enough to light the indicator, so I know immediately when I have a problem with a turn signal/brake light element in a bulb.

Ive got the dash panel finished and the new Autometer gauges installed in it. Sitting next to the original panel. Notice the 3 indicators for the turn signals.

New panel looks way better than the ancient one.

June 17, 2001. After my cars first voyage out of town, I noticed a slight tick in the motor on my way home. I checked the oil, I found it was 2 quarts low!!! Strange. In the last 1000 miles of in town driving, it has never used any noticeable oil. After topping off the oil, going to work and back, it started ticking again after it warmed up in the driveway. Off comes the valve covers for inspection.

It seems like the valve seals slid up the valve stems. This could explain the oil consumption.

August 16, 2001. When I bought my car, it had a cheesy aftermarket flip up roof that was cracked, bent, scratched, etc. I figured that I would just take the roof out and weld the hole shut. I just happened to have an 85 Honda that I was cutting up, and I figured that if it fit, great, or I could always go back to the original plan. As it turns out, it fits perfectly. I took about 4 inches of the roof sheet metal around the hole from the honda to make a nice lip. I made some simple brackets to mount the frame from underneath, and JB welded the Honda sheet to the underside of the Cougar roof sheetmetal. It has been in for about 3 months now, and works great, but the JB weld is cracking, and I really didnt want to post pics until I got it welded in good, and the paint touched up, but it has been awhile and I havent got around to getting it welded yet. The red parts around the lip is the Honda roof sheet metal part

I put a sunroof from a 85 Honda Prelude in my car.

I put a sunroof from a 85 Honda Prelude in my car.

I put a sunroof from a 85 Honda Prelude in my car.

October 10,2001. It has been awhile, but I have accomplished alot lately. New valences, almost finished my console, several new perishable items like switches and stuff.

New dash, been in for awhile, just havent got around to posting pics.

In the dark with the dash lights on. Ooooh Aaah.

November 2, 2001. The marker lights that originally came on my car are amber versions that are hard to find versions of a pretty common clear bulb. Since the clear ones are much easier to find. I decided to modify my marker lenses to output amber light with clear bulbs. I put some amber tailight repair tape on the clear lens, then 2 layers of tint over the tape for a blackout look. Looks pretty cool.

Looks black when they are off.

In the dark with the marker lights on. Ooooh Aaah some more. Looks like a light orange, perfect.

November 18,2001. Several people have asked me why I have 2 shifters in my car. First I tell them that my other 2 vehicles are 4x4s and my car was jealous, so I added another to make it happy. Seriously though, the toploader transmission takes a bit of grunt power to shift gears quickly, and reverse being between 1st and 2nd gear towards the driver and back, it wanted to go into reverse when excitedly shifting from first to second gear. To avoid this tendency, I modified the shifter to confine it to an H pattern, and made a separate shifter for the reverse action.

Since my shifter assembly is a tad wider than the stock shifter, I had to make my own console. I still have to paint the panel that the sunroof control is screwed to, and maybe get another shifter boot for the main shifter. It is stained permanently from the paint mist when I painted my car. I even put it through a cycle in the dishwasher to try to get it black again.

Robs Stupid Dual Shifters

Tell me how stupid my Cougar is