A blog about finding and keeping my 1973 Mustang Grande (V8 - 351C 2V). Produced on July 6, 1973. Sold in Florida, USA.

Monday, October 10, 2016


I'm going to try and become Car of the Month on the 7173Mustangs.com forum. It's a great forum with a lot of very helpful people owning a 7123 Mustang. Fingers crossed! :-)

Saturday, October 1, 2016

Installing a high torque mini starter

Yessah! Today I'm replacing my starter with one that will actually start when my car is hot. Hold on, my car always looks hot, I mean: when the engine is hot! ;-)

Here's some science for you to understand why the old starter sometimes doesn't crank well when the engine is hot: The original starter has a LOT of copper wire inside that make up the coils required to create a magnetic field. A lot of copper makes it a strong magnet when current flows through the copper but as the temperature of copper rises, its electric resistance increases. The increase can actually be so much that less current can flow through the copper and... less current = less power. And when there's not enough power to crank, the starter will tell you with a lovely whining noise.

So this new high torque mini starter (see previous blog post) uses a permanent magnet(instead of copper coils), that's the "PM" in "PMGR starter". "GR" stands for "gear reduction".

So here it goes!

A month ago I got myself these bad boys to lift my car up, freakin' awesome when you don't have a carlift or are limited in other ways. I had to first drive it up there because I don't have enough space to push all 1600 kilos up... Then I used the footpump to lift the car. Don't forget to put your car in neutral because while lifting it, it will also be pushed back a fair bit and if it can't move freely you get tension in your tranny and you don't want that.
When the car was up, I disconnected the battery.

So there it is, the old starter. It's a brick! I always thought it would be attached to the engine but it's actually attached to the tranny, a C6 in my case.

Back to the electronics. This is the fender solenoid. It's purpose is to switch the high current needed for a starter motor. The thick cable on the left is attached to the positive lead from the battery. The one on the right leads to the starter. Because the new starter has its own solenoid the thick cable from the right will be moved to the left and the other end will be input for the starter-solenoid.

This is the ignition cable that came with the starter.

The new thinner cable will be used to re-direct the ignition switch to the starter solenoid. The thick cable that was on the right is now on the left.

Lead the red cable down aside the thick cable that's already there.

I guess this starter isn't as original as I thought because I don't think they had ISO 9001 in 1973...  And this one was issued in 2002 by the looks of it. Please correct me if I'm wrong.

Anyways, look, it's gone! One of my biggest concerns was how I'd actually get the starter out of there. Well, it fits through the gap in this red circle.

Voila, one brick starter.

Peekaboo! You can now see the teeth on the flywheel.

Here is a picture to see the differences in size.

From a slightly different angle as well ;-)

Bolting in the new starter is easy-peasy. The one I got from DB Electrical fits perfectly!

The hardest part was attaching the thick cable because I want to keep it away from the exhaust as much as possible but as you tighten the bolt it keeps totating towards the exhaust.

And that's it!

When I tested it I had to get used to the new starting noise, it's quite different from what I'm used to. But it started well and powerful.


Mission accomplished!

Friday, September 16, 2016

The high torque mini starter

YES! Today I received the high torque mini starter I ordered in the USA. I thought I was ordering "Made in the USA" but it's still "Made in China". It looks OK though. The little installation guide can be confusing because the image of the solenoid is actually mirrorred from when you look at it in your car..

Here are some photos of the starter:


Saturday, July 16, 2016

The small ignition improvement

So this week I received a new distributor cap and new spark plug wires. Alltogether they don't cost too much and it's an easy way to check if this fixes the starting troubles I had last time.

I don't know how long the old wires have been in there but last time I found that the engine was running erratic and I think not all 8 cilinders were firing.

This is the inside of the old cap. Looks a bit worn out to me...

The new cap.

I should've also ordered a new rotor but I forgot. So I just fixed this one up a bit. (This is "before").

After replacing everything the engine fired up on the second attempt. Very happy wth that.

I took a quick testdrive to the airport where I also made some dusk-shots.

Nice :-)

Sunday, June 5, 2016

More questions...

For some reason my Mustang ain't starting up very well. It takes about 5 times tryin' and when it starts running it runs rough. As the engine warms up it gets better. I keep smelling fuel in the exhaust though, too rich I think. But what do I know? I might get new plug cables and maybe even upgrade to electronic ignition...

Anyway, I also noticed something else today that has me a little worried.

The bit in the red circle is shaking a bit and I'm wondering if this is normal.

Here is a short movie that makes it a little clearer:

Tuesday, May 24, 2016

Installing the new waterneck

Today I cleaned everything, removing all the old stuck gasket and oily bits. Pictured is the old thermostat.

I put in the new thermostat and then installed a new gasket and housing. I used gasket sealant on both sides of the gasket and anti seize on the bolts.

I have no leaks after attaching the hose and re-filling the coolant. The engine ran fine after this, gotta take it for a test drive soon!

Monday, May 2, 2016

Removing the thermostat housing bolts

Soooo, the bolts. The stuck, bolts.

There they are. I had already started drilling but I centered the left one off-centre :-/

I was scared the holes wouldn't be blind, leaving metal in the water after drilling. It seemed they were blind holes thankfully.

When trying to re-centre the off-centre hole the bolt unexpectedly came out. Lucky me! Unfortunately the other one was the opposite and it was really stuck. Left turning drills didn't get it out. Vast amounts of penetrating oil didn't do a thing and I didn't even start welding a nut on being so close to the fuel line.

So the only option left (I'm not even taking easy outs into consideration) was to completely drill it out. Thankfully I centered this hole nicely. Being a 5/16 bolt I ended up using a 6.4 mm drill which separated all the threads and made the bolt come apart after which I only needed to pick up the pieces and clean the thread a bit.

I was very pleased when I got this bolt out and it's made me more confident for when it happens next coz I'm sure it will some day!

I did notice one sensor that is not connected to anything. It's not the temperature sensor because that's actually behind the hose (connected to the black wire)...