Buying a 66 T-bird Tuesda
Join Date: Jan 2006
Location: Mashpee, MA
No Car Bought -- not driveable safely
Sorry about this, but the car not able to be driven safely without a LOT OF WORK, tons of it in fact
The 66 Tird did not pass the testing, and my Dad is not going to buy it. Turns out to be a good thing after all. If anyone out there wants it, and the parts car that goes with it, it is still for sale on Cape Cod. It islocated on Rt. 130 in Sandwich, MA near the border of the town of Mashpee. I think the address is 42 Rt 130. The owner wants $7500 firm, because it comes with two cars.
Here are the details we found out.
First, the test frive my Dad took it on was just around the guy who owns it back yard area, and was never taken out on a real road. It wasn't registered and no one wanted to get a ticket. The police in MA don't have a sense of humor about this stuff.
When the car got to the shop my Dad uses, Falmouth Motorcar Inc., they looked it over really good. The first big thing they saw was the drivers side wheel well and how it was chopped so the A/C unit would fit with the 460. By doing this, they used a piece of flat steel plate about a 1/4" thick. If the drivers side wheel were turned hard to the right it would have hit the edge of this plate, and a highway speed might have ripped the tire apart. Bad thing #1...
As far as ever getting a igway speed, te car would probably shake its self apart trying -- the drivers side idler arm, whatever that is, is completely worn away. the way it is worn looks like it happened soon after the newest arm thingy was put in, caused by the way the front suspension is put together -- this is Bad thing #2....
Moving on to Bad thing #3 that causes #2 -- the front suspension on the driver side was moved around to make room for the 460 motor...
(it's starting to look like the 460 ci motor was a VERY bad idea for this car!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!)
.....we were told the shock tower (I'm reading all this from the paper we got from the shop) had to be moved to a new and weird location for this big 460ic motor to fit under the hood. This is putting weirder stresses on the front suspension, making it move funny, that will get worse the faster the car moves. there is no way to straighten out the suspension because of how it is put together -- this caused the idler arm thingy to get eaten....
Moving on to killer Bad thing point #4, the brake system is shot. Not just shot but needs to be completly scrapped and replaced. the power booster is leaking, the front rotors are gone, and back brakes are "a joke" (the guy at the shop said this very bunch of words!!!). Very big bucks to fix.
This brings me to the final kick (Bad thing #5) - the shop refuses to touch the car in any way shape or form!!! In fact, they told us no reputable honest shop would be willing to fix this car so it can be safely driven. Because the front suspension has been changed so much from the way it was originally built, they will not bewilling to take responcibility for this car to be driven safely. If they fix the brakes so it will stop, and tell us it can be safe to drive, and then the funky shock tower thing causes the carthe loose control and hit something big, like a really big truck, the shop would probably be sued by my Mom for killing me and my Dad -- they refuse to put themselves in that position, and so would any other shop with a good reputation.
If someone wants a Tbird that they can do all the work on, and is willing to rip into this one, move the shock tower back after putting the 390 from the other Tbird back into this good body car, then they should buy it. Years ago my Dad could have done this, but he's handicapped now and isn't able to do this type work any more.
I'm very sad, because the car looks GREAT. On the good side the shop said the body and the frame are very good and the lights word good too. The interior is a little worn but all there and looks really pretty with white leather ribbed areas surrounded by black leather. It has all the emblems, and the junk car it comes with also has all the chrome emblems, three extra hubcaps, a lot of nice bits inside the car (dashboard doesn't have cracks, the area with he gages look good....etc) The seats in the junker car are bad, but are solid as far as the framework goes.
The guy who owns it is named Walter Burke, and his cellphone number is 508-294-3570. He didn't know much about the cars, and was very nice about letting my Dad have it carried on a flat platform tow truck to be checked out. Walt didn't know any of this, and thanked my Dad a lot for payingto have it checked by a good shop. My Dad was also happy -- saying it was worth every penny to get it checked. He said he would have been REALLY mad if he had bought it and THEN found out how much trouble it would be to get it running safe enough to let me drive it. There is no way he would let me drive it with three of my friends in it unless he knew it was as safe as possible. Just the thought of four teens in a car having an accident wouldn't let him sleep at night!!!!
Too bad - it's a VERY pretty Tbird. I hope it finds a good home with someone willing to make it safe to drive around, and not just a car to carry to a car show, then be carried home to live in a garage.
Sorry everyone, I was hoping to join this club of old Tbird owners. I might get lucky and find one for a little more money that is okay, with the right engine in it and no major parts moved to the wrong place. Good luck everyone. I'm going to keep looking for a car, that costs around $10k, that is safe enough for me to use.
Greta -- call Walt and buy this pretty car from him!!!!!!
(Photo = me and Dad's Jaguar!!!)