Last month, we introduced Hypersilver, our '88 GT that we're building to commemorate the 25th anniversary of MM&FF. We want this project to be the wildest, highest-end Muscle Mustangs project car ever built. That is certainly a sizeable task, and since we're revealing it at SEMA in October, we're on a tight schedule to boot.
We've vowed to not give everything away up front, that way there will be surprises left on the table at the unveil. We will be gnawing away at every little fragment of this project—piece by piece—each month so you can follow along. Granted, some of the things we include in this build are unconventional, but you will no doubt be informed and entertained at the least. And maybe all of this may encourage you to tackle your own project, or take your current project to the next level.
1. For the sum of $348, we acquired every piece that Scott Rod Fabrications makes for the Fox-body engine bay. We opted for the steel versions, but SRF also makes natural and colored-aluminum versions that rivet in.
When we found this '88 GT in an ad on Craigslist, it was a bare shell, emphasis on the bare. It was in the beginning stages of becoming a drag-only car, and the owner had mounted it to a rotisserie and had it sand-blasted. Prior to the blasting, he removed every nut, bolt, screw, and clip from the body—there is no paint, rust, or plastic filler. After it was blasted, he then had it coated in etching primer to preserve the bare metal beneath. The owner got married and had a kid, so the project was pushed to the back burner in the corner of his dad's shop.
We couldn't resist the opportunity to buy it; for just under $2,000, we rolled it into our enclosed trailer and hauled it to our warehouse. There it sat for about a year, looking like a shadow of its former self. The doors, hatch, and bumpers (all bare as well) lay inside of it, awaiting the resurrection. With such a blank slate on our hands, the wheels began to turn.
We were anticipating our 25th anniversary, and knew this would be the ideal foundation for a project that significant. We called our buddy John McBride to sketch out a rendering, decided on the main components and theme of the build, and started ordering parts.
2. At Demon Motorsports, owner Ryan Lowther prepped the engine bay by wire-wheeling the su
3. The SRF pieces are all trim-to-fit. Due to tolerances during the build process dimensio
4. We also decided to keep a couple of holes, so Lowther simply marked and trimmed the blo
5. Lowther then fitted and tacked the pieces in place.
6. He then went back and stitch-welded the entire perimeter of each piece.
7a. In these close-up photos, you can see just how nice Lowther’s welds really are—we’ll p
7b. In these close-up photos, you can see just how nice Lowther’s welds really are—we’ll p
8. With everything removed from the engine bay, you can clearly see the Swiss-cheesed fend
9. Lowther cut out the trunk floor between the framerails. After finishing the tubs, he’ll
Cutting and Welding
The first stop on our journey is the chassis shop. Demon Motorsports in Crystal River, Florida, came highly recommended by some reliable sources. So after checking out some of its work, we hauled our skeleton an hour and a half north of our office to Demon. Owner and welder Ryan Lowther does a little bit of everything in the automotive fabrication world—off-road vehicles, pro touring muscle cars, 6-second Hot Rod Drag Week sleds, and a slew of Mustangs.
We have an extensive list of tasks to accomplish while at Demon. We're installing the wheel tubs and coilovers, mounting the fuel cell, smoothing the engine bay, and installing a rollbar and through-the-floor subframe connectors. We're using Scott Rod Fabrications weld-in steel engine bay panels and a pre-cut wheeltub kit—the rest will be built custom by Lowther.
Lowther wasted no time putting our GT under the blade, cutting out the stock rear wheel housings and trunk floor. This is not a job for the faint of heart, and we're certainly glad that Lowther was wielding the cutoff wheel. He had all of the stock wheelhouse cut out before we realized we had the wrong wheeltub kit. We ordered a mini-tub kit but really we need a full-tub kit. So it's back to the drawing board on the tubs for now—more on that next month.