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  • Originally posted by YellowRose View Post
    Hi Steven! Thanks for the additional pix! She really looks nice with the white top I think! She is looking great!
    Back at you Ray...that Yellow Rose with the white roof may have been subliminal inspiration for this rooftop change!

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    • Foolhardy Tropical TBird Project

      Here is what Steve had to say regarding the work on his Flairbird!

      "Hi Ray, The TBird project keeps moving along. The focus is on the engine now. Headers and top end parts arrived. The engine was pulled and the engine bay is getting refreshed. When the engine was removed, Dan saw the timing chain needed replacement. Now looking at new pistons and perhaps stroking. I will visit the shop in 2 weeks. I ordered custom wheels that look a bit like the originals. In short, getting more mods than I originally thought I would. All the best, Steve."

      Ray Clark - Squarebirds Administrator
      The Terminator..... VTCI #11178
      Contact me via Private Message for my email address, or Call (Cell) 210-875-1411

      https://www.squarebirds.org/picture_gallery/TechnicalResourceLibrary/trl.htm

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      • Hi Guys, If I may ask, what is the Sanderson part number for those shorty headers . ? May be something I want to do on my 428....Thanks !

        Faron

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        • Foolhardy Tropical TBird Project

          Here is the latest report on Steven's '66 Flairbird restoration directly from him.

          "The '66 Bird in Shrewsbury is pretty much finished except for the engine work. It has been at the engine shop recommended by Dan for over a month...apparently they have a backlog of work due to the race season there, but they have prepped it. They also found a ring that was broken and that had not been caught before; surprisingly compression was fine on all cylinders before the engine was dis assembled."

          So there ya go!

          Ray Clark - Squarebirds Administrator
          The Terminator..... VTCI #11178
          Contact me via Private Message for my email address, or Call (Cell) 210-875-1411

          https://www.squarebirds.org/picture_gallery/TechnicalResourceLibrary/trl.htm

          Comment


          • It has been quite some time since I last heard from Steve & David regarding the restoration and repair work being done on Steve's 1966 Flairbird. I just heard from Steve and then from David, with an update and a lot of pix. Here is what was said.

            Hi Ray,

            I hope the new year has been shaping up well for you.

            Haven't provided an update in awhile - sorry for that. On the whole, the Tropical Bird project stalled significantly last year, mostly regarding shifting priorities leading to availability of mechanic resources at the shop, including a shop move to a significantly improved facility.

            I believe I last wrote about the changeover of the hydraulic windshield wiper unit to an electric one. That was quite the effort and the result is excellent. Dan’s team documented how to do that if anyone needs to do that in the future.

            Mechanically, the car is mostly complete now. Engine is running very well. If you remember, the 428 was bored and stroked, with a complete new top end installed - intake manifold, air filter, heads and roller rockers, headers, EFI, etc. That led to additional necessary changes, like upgrading the brakes to a hydro boost system, installing a vacuum canister system (where the factory one was missing), MSD ignition, controller, high-end (and quiet) fuel pump/system with flow regulator, thick exhaust gaskets, and many other items.

            We had a small debacle when it went out for the new exhaust system. The first shop managed to smash a fuel line by bumping the temporary exhaust into it and rupturing it while driving the car into their shop. They ultimately decided to not do the work as they thought it was too hard to do given the headers angles and the exhaust route. After recovering the car, replacing the fuel line, and finding another shop, we were treated to what is probably the most solid exhaust I’ve personally ever seen. I’m certain I could do pull-ups on any section of it!

            We added a few other items such as an on-board compressor and air horns in the front bumper, upgraded halogen headlights, repainted headliner panels (the moon skin headliner [or is it mouse skin] never stayed attached), and other.

            We’ve struggled with the final drive options and don’t think we will change anything at this point. As you know, the final drive is quite high, and when mated to the C6 3-speed transmission, the gearing is directed for cruising. Basically, off the line, the car is sluggish. Understanding this is a cruiser, it feels like we’re leaving a lot of power in that drivetrain and not applying it on the road. Our current direction is to get out and drive the car as-is and decide on any changes, if necessary, later. Open to ideas especially on final drive ring and pinion options for that pumpkin.

            As Steven noted, we moved to paint. Our approach was to just paint the areas we repaired around the frame rails, rocker panels, lower quarters around the wheel wells/skirts, and a few nicks and chips around the car, then blend the paint, wet sand, and polish. As we prepped for paint, we realized that there were so many spots that would need blending that it made sense to just prep the whole surface and paint it.

            As with anything restoration, that led to some more discoveries. Rust was developing in the trunk seal channel around the trunk. That was a great catch and luckily it was just surface rust so it is now in bare metal ready for priming. While blocking and prepping for the new paint job, we found that the existing paint was very easily flaking-off and separating from a previous painted surface. This seems to be a widespread issue and we’ve gone down to bare metal on most of the external panels. Clearly something went wrong on the last spray about 10 years ago and is just flaking and peeling off.

            Not to be done with discoveries, we have found new areas that were repaired incorrectly. We found a crease on the passenger side quarter (above the repair we did some time age) and onto the door that were stuffed with bondo and shaped instead of repairing the metal.

            That said, all of the metal we’ve uncovered is in very good shape and easy to work and fix correctly as needed. All surfaces will be epoxy sealed, skimmed, blocked, base painted, clear coated, and wet sanded and polished. So that’s where we’re heading! David.


            Ray Clark - Squarebirds Administrator
            The Terminator..... VTCI #11178
            Contact me via Private Message for my email address, or Call (Cell) 210-875-1411

            https://www.squarebirds.org/picture_gallery/TechnicalResourceLibrary/trl.htm

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            • Looks like a lot has been accomplished and the end goal can be seen
              Dano Calgary,Alberta Canada
              Thunderbird Registry
              58HT #33317
              60 HT (Sold )

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