The '68 Mustang is a staple of American muscle. Not only was it the first year of Ford's iconic 302 V8 engine, but Steve McQueen pushed the car to icon status in his dramatic thriller "Bullitt." It's no surprise, therefore, that Reddit user MustangGuy68 pounced on the opportunity to purchase one off Craigslist and restore this beauty back to its glory days.
Despite having almost no experience working on cars, this high school kid, his father and brother took on the epic task. They documented their incredible journey from start to finish — join us and take a look at these photos!
“After a long trip, she was finally home. (15 year old me)”
A view of the rear.
“OUT COMES THE ENGINE”
“The engine that came with the car was a 289ci V8. Not in the greatest shape, but sure had some power. We later learned that there were many aftermarket parts on it.”
“This stuff [paint stripper] is nasty. It will burn your hands off if you let it. (If you are ever using this stuff, use a mask and gloves!)”
“After finding a lot of Bondo (body filler) on the car, my curiosity took over and I wanted to find out what was under all the paint.”
“Using a palm sander, I was able to uncover the history of this time capsule. It came from the factory in Meadowlark Yellow paint. The next person painted it green, the next red, and finally black.”
“THE WORK BEGINS”
“When we got the car, there were new floors but there was a problem. Someone along the way screwed and caulked the gaps so no water would get in. If anyone were to get into an accident in the car at that time, the car would most likely have crumpled.”
“FINAL PRODUCT OF OUR WELDS”
“Not too bad for rookies. (We would later seam seal the rest).”
“TIME TO TAKE THOSE RUSTY QUARTERS OFF”
“It was very odd seeing the car like this. We also uncovered more rust along the way.”
“We had to sand and re-sand every inch of metal on the car to ensure there was no rust when we put our sealer coat of primer on.”
“It was very grimy when we took it out. This picture was after power washing it for a good half hour.”
“ENGINE AFTER PAINT”
“After cleaning the engine up, we painted it factory Ford Blue. This is where the car really starts to come together.”
“I know, looks like rust but its just primer.”
“After seeing the whole car in primer was a sight to see.”
“FINALLY SOME PAINT!”
“Everything was starting to look nice and clean for the first time in a while.”
“This has to be one of my favorite pictures out of my collection. It really shows how hard work will pay off.”
A look at the newly seated engine.
“THE BODY WORK BEGINS”
“This was probably the most time consuming part of the restoration. At first we didn’t know what to expect, but after talking to some people and learning some tricks, we got the hang of it.”
“At first, we wanted to throw the hood out because it was so beat up, but after the work we had already put into it, we just finished what we started.”
“HIGH BUILD PRIMER”
“At this point, we were at the block sanding stage. Between the two of us, we had ~400 hours for body filler and high build primer. (We never did any of this before)”
“For anyone doing a restoration, make sure you take your time when you are in the block sanding stage. This is the most important part.”
“It [sanding] basically determines what your final product will look like all the way until the paint stage. (Look down the side of any car at a car show and take a look for yourself).”
“This paint is worth its weight in gold (or at least to me). For those who are wondering, the color of the paint is Kona Blue.”
“This was a very difficult part of the painting process. It took us 7 hours to tape everything that had to be painted. We had no guide points so we had to measure (and hope) to the center of the car.”
“AFTER WHITE STRIPES ARE PAINTED AND TAPE IS REMOVED”
“After white stripes are painted and tape is removed — The color white (yes, there are surprisingly many variants of white) we used is called Toyota Super White.”
“My Dad and I attaching the front falance.”“It took my Dad and I 52 hours in 4 days to paint and clear everything.”
“A lot of blood sweat and tears went into her, but the end result is priceless. I not only have learned so much about these old cars, but I have built an appreciation for them. Something that is more valuable than that is being able to spend the time working on the car with my dad.”
If you want to see more amazing pictures and details about how this restoration was completed, visit his Reddit post.