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post #1 of 4 (permalink) Old 03-08-14, 01:00 PM Thread Starter
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77 Tbird: A Few General Questions

So I've just registered here on the forum. I was looking for a place where I could post some general questions ,and this seemed to be the best fit considering most other ford related forums are specific to a make or model.

I'm currently a high school senior and I drive a 1977 Thunderbird Town Landau. I picked it up last summer for around 1800 bucks including tax and tags. I got it so cheap because I got it from a dealer that specialized in super cars and euro imports, and they simply didn't want the thing. The car to my knowledge only had one owner before me, and the story goes the old man passed away after falling from a ladder.

It was a three month fiasco to get it in proper legal driving condition and I was convinced the old guy cursed the thing. Finally around 1500 dollars later it has been running very solid. I put in a new radiator, the exhaust system was patched, a new oem 2V carb was put on, new filters and fluids, and the last thing I recently replaced was the battery.

So when I got the car I didn't know a damn thing about this generation Thunderbird; I nor my family are really Ford people so I was going in blind. I found out it has a 400, which I had never heard of up to then, and after a lot of research it turns out the 400 is a really under appreciated motor that has a lot of untapped potential due to all of the smog bull crap spliced onto it.

My only questions with the car now is, what kind of suspension upgrades can I do to this? Through my internet research I've heard people say that my gen tbird has the same platform as the previous, is this true? Also if I'm looking to make more power, should I start with a duel exhaust system first or engine bolt ons? I'm going to guess start with an exhaust to help lesson the back pressure, but I'm not any type of expert.

Thanks in advance for all of the help, and I hope to enjoy my stay.

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post #2 of 4 (permalink) Old 03-09-14, 07:17 AM
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Re: 77 Tbird: A Few General Questions

I went looking up part numbers for suspension parts, and the older gen's seem to fit yours; however, just because two vehicles share the same platform, doesn't mean that all the under pinnings are swappable. What are you looking to do with the suspension, just stiffer springs, or a little more?

As far as power, if you're going to add to the engine, you really want to upgrade the exhaust first. In most states, the catalytic converter is no longer needed, so get rid of that and I think I'd look at the cam second.

Ever notice that there's so many high performance parts available for GM products?

Did you ever think that maybe they NEED them?
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post #3 of 4 (permalink) Old 03-09-14, 09:12 AM Thread Starter
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Re: 77 Tbird: A Few General Questions

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Originally Posted by CatSkinner View Post
I went looking up part numbers for suspension parts, and the older gen's seem to fit yours; however, just because two vehicles share the same platform, doesn't mean that all the under pinnings are swappable. What are you looking to do with the suspension, just stiffer springs, or a little more?

As far as power, if you're going to add to the engine, you really want to upgrade the exhaust first. In most states, the catalytic converter is no longer needed, so get rid of that and I think I'd look at the cam second.
Well as far as suspension goes, I'm just looking to stiffen it up a bit. I'm sure you know how smooth they ride, but they throw you around a lot at higher speeds.

As far as the engine goes I think I'm going to do a 4 barrel and a new intake, because a 2V carb seems really wheezy for a 400. The cam is a definite second, but would I have to replace the timing chain and gears?
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post #4 of 4 (permalink) Old 03-09-14, 06:05 PM
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cool Re: 77 Tbird: A Few General Questions

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Originally Posted by RoadBoat77 View Post
Well as far as suspension goes, I'm just looking to stiffen it up a bit. I'm sure you know how smooth they ride, but they throw you around a lot at higher speeds.

As far as the engine goes I think I'm going to do a 4 barrel and a new intake, because a 2V carb seems really wheezy for a 400. The cam is a definite second, but would I have to replace the timing chain and gears?
It's cheap insurance to put a new timing set in when you do a cam. For more info about your Bird, might I recommend the Vintage Thunderbird Club International's forum. Lots of great info there, I'm not sure about the 77-79 generation, but join and give it a look. There are allot of great T-Bird books, and the VTCI's main site sells some good books on the T-Bird in their Country Store.

Vintage Thunderbird Club International :: Index

Vintage Thunderbird Club

Master ASE Certified L1 Chrysler Technician- still a Ford fan at heart.
1964 Thunderbird Hardtop- Chantily Beige- 390 FE 4V V8-Uncle's Car
1966 Thunderbird Convertible- Red- 390 FE 4V V8- Uncle's other car- waiting for paint and body work!!!
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