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77 Thunderbird needs some help... and I do too!

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  • 77 Thunderbird needs some help... and I do too!

    I had been studying hard for a while to take a certification exam and promised myself a reward if I passed my test. That day finally came a couple of weeks ago and my reward was a 1977 Thunderbird that I had my eye on for a while.

    With the exception of the roof, the body panels are in awesome shape and still have the original color. That was one of the big reasons for taking a flyer on this particular T-Bird.

    Now over the past couple of weeks, I've been digging in to restore her. The biggest issues so far are:
    • Multiple rusted through areas of the floor pan
    • Completely rusted through battery tray
    • A few small rusted through areas of the trunk pan
    • I think it needs a new fuel pump
    • Both interior door panels and arm rests are in really bad shape

    Some of the more minor things that it needs are (minor until I get into them, at least!):
    • New oil pan gasket
    • Fuses and light bulbs for the dash
    • New carpet
    • Loose shifter
    • Cracked tail light (but the guy I bought it from gave me a good one he had so I have a replacement ready to go.
    • Some areas of the window trim are a little beat up

    It is definitely going to be a long process but I'm really excited about the prospects of getting her back in good shape and back on the road. For what little I paid though, I figured I got what I paid for and the sky is the limit from here.

  • #2
    77 Thunderbird needs some help... and I do too!

    Matthew, congratulations on passing your certification test! I see you have some problem areas that those of us who own Squarebirds have run into. Floor pan, battery tray and trunk pan rusting. For us Squarebird owners it was a matter of finding a parts car, and either cutting out good floor pans and welding them in, or fabricating new ones. You can replace the battery tray from a parts car or Tbird parts vendor. Since you live in Virginia, I would contact the guys at the Bird House in Delaware or the Bird Nest in Oregon, to see if they happen to have a '77 Tbird parts car in their inventory. Or see if they know where you can find one at. Most of our Tbird parts houses only have parts for '55-'66 Tbirds, so it might be hard to find parts for a '77 from a Tbird parts house. All the major Tbird parts houses are found in the Advertisements Forum. You might have to call around to see if anyone does. You will need a '77 Tbird shop manual, and you might be able to find one on eBay. There are a number of NOS or Old Parts houses in the Advertisements Forum, and they might have what you are going to need. Some of them are going to want you to give them the Ford part number though...

    Another thing you can do is to post in the For Sale / Parts Wanted Forum for what you are needing. Anyone on here might be sitting on a '77 Tbird parts car that we do not know about...

    Ray Clark - Squarebirds Administrator
    '59 Tbird "The Yellow Rose Of Texas" aka "Tweety Bird"
    "It's Hip To Be Square"
    Thunderbird Registry #33025 VTCI #11178

    Contact me via Private Message for my email address, or (Cell) 210-875-1411 (Home) 210-674-5781