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 The insanity continues - Mustang II #7
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SteelSteeds
Advanced Member

USA
3285 Posts

Posted - 04/13/2017 :  2:31:33 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Yup, lucky number 7. I'm really just waiting for the men in white coats to show up at this point. I swore I was going to sell a couple of them, not add to the fleet. But, sadly, it's much easier to find another one for sale than it is to make the time to work on one and get it ready to sell...

So, someone posted a link on Facebook to an eBay auction for a Midnight Blue King Cobra. Lo and behold, it was relatively close to me. But, the price was a bit more than I wanted to spend for yet another project. The starting price was $2500, for a rough but very original King Cobra in Midnight Blue with the standard chamois interior, AT, and t-tops. Other options include the clock, rear window defrost, AM/FM 8-track stereo, and tinted glass. The auction closed with no bids. The seller relisted it at $1700, and I thought hard about it, but decided I really wasn't going to go for it unless I could get it for $1500. A couple of days later, the starting price dropped to $1350 with no reserve. So... I placed my bid. And I was the winning bidder until there were 2 seconds left in the auction and someone sniped it. I smiled ruefully, and figured it was for the best.

I had been in contact with the seller to ask a few questions, so she had my number. About 5 days later, I got a text from her saying that the buyer was not responding and had not paid the deposit. She wanted to know if I was still interested. Right...
Another few days passed, eBay processed the non-payment, and I received my second chance offer. $1510
I will be picking it up on Saturday the 22nd. And now, pics from the seller:





At some point along the line, interior pieces from a Ghia Sport were transplanted into this car. The front seats, rear seat bottoms, passenger side dash bezel, and the console are not original to this car.









The seller is unsure if the passenger side engine bay brace is available, she said she would look for it.



I'm hoping to get a better copy or scan of the Marti Report, but it's nice that I won't have to spend the money to get one.

I will be the third owner. The story goes that a gentleman in Washington state had ordered a brand new '78 Mustang and waited some time to receive it. Unfortunately, someone along the line made a mistake, and his Mustang had not been produced in a timely fashion. The dealership he was working with offered him this King Cobra instead, and he made the deal. It apparently wasn't exactly what he had hoped it would be, and he sold it to a friend of his within 6 months. That friend thoroughly enjoyed the car, and over the following 29 years racked up 133k miles. In 2007 it developed carburetor problems and was parked in the garage, where it awaited his attention. Sadly, a series of strokes rendered the owner unable to perform the work to resurrect his beloved hot rod. Several months ago, the owner passed away. The seller is the daughter of the owner, and she is very happy that her father's King Cobra is staying in the Northwest.

For the last couple of months, I have been diligently working on my '77 Cobra II, and am now very close to firing it up for the first time since 1998. Once I have it running, I anticipate that it will continue to need the bulk of my attention for a few months while I work the bugs out, and then my work situation is going to render me unable to work on anything until late summer. At that point, I will have a blank slate, and will need to decide what car to focus on. This new King might end up being a good candidate. I can't wait to get it in the shop and start going over it.

For those curious, here is the Mustang II fleet, with status:

1. 1977 Cobra II - black/black, V8/AT hardtop - Non-operational since '98, will be running again very soon.
2. 1978 King Cobra - orange/black, V8/5-speed t-top - The Calypso Coral King! Running and looking great.
3. 1978 Rallye Appearance Package - white/black, V8/4-speed t-top - Long term project, no projected date.
4. 1978 King Cobra - white(blue graphics)/black, V8/AT hardtop - Long term project, no projected date.
5. 1978 Rallye Appearance Package - black/black, V8/AT (originally 4-speed) hardtop - Running and driving. Intend to do some cosmetic improvements and sell in the near future.
6. 1978 Mach 1 - Midnight Blue/Red, V8/4-speed hardtop with aftermarket sunroof - Non-operational, intend to get it running, clean it up and sell it.
7. 1978 King Cobra - Midnight Blue/Chamois, V8/AT t-top. Even though this one is a project, it's less of one than either of the white cars.


Lance
'77 Cobra II - 302/C4
'78 Rallye Appearance Package - 302/C4
'78 King Cobra - 351W/T5
'79 Bronco - 429/C6/NP205
'08 Shelby GT 500
'16 Focus RS



Edited by - SteelSteeds on 04/17/2017 12:57:34 PM

GhiaBill
Junior Member

USA
370 Posts

Posted - 04/13/2017 :  4:02:54 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Congratulations Lance! The guys in my club started teasing me about that one when it came up on ebay saying I didn't have a blue one. I would have been interested in it if it hadn't been on the exact opposite corner of the country. I'm glad you got it because I know you will give it the care it deserves. Keep us up on the progress.

1975 Silver Luxury Ghia
1976 Silver Luxury Ghia
1977 Convertible
2 - 1978 King Cobras
1978 Rallye
1996 GT Convertible
1977 Free Wheling F-100
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SteelSteeds
Advanced Member

USA
3285 Posts

Posted - 04/13/2017 :  6:39:11 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Thanks Bill.
I think my next King Cobra needs to be a 4-speed hardtop. You know, since I now have an AT with t-tops, an AT without t-tops, and a MT with t-tops... Or maybe a billboard '78 Cobra will finally fall into my lap!

But first I need to sell something.


Edited by - SteelSteeds on 04/13/2017 6:39:44 PM
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77Ghiall
Member

Canada
715 Posts

Posted - 04/14/2017 :  11:52:25 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Way to go Lance!!!! I didn't think that story was going to end with the failed eBay bid, it was kind of destined for you. Although, you may have to add ceiling parking in you shop to accommodate another vehicle Look forward to seeing it in October on our way through.

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minisho
Junior Member

USA
106 Posts

Posted - 04/17/2017 :  08:55:01 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Nice find Lance


Those who would give up essential Liberty, to purchase a little temporary Safety, deserve neither Liberty nor Safety. - Benjamin Franklin
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Scot
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vince_78kc
Junior Member

Canada
359 Posts

Posted - 04/17/2017 :  10:36:47 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Very nice! You've got the space to store the cars, and they don't cost much, so nothing wrong with getting another. It wouldn't have been right to let that one get away!
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SteelSteeds
Advanced Member

USA
3285 Posts

Posted - 04/18/2017 :  6:42:31 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by vince_78kc

Very nice! You've got the space to store the cars, and they don't cost much, so nothing wrong with getting another. It wouldn't have been right to let that one get away!


I like your line of reasoning Vince! Or is that rationalizing? I get those confused sometimes...

I'd hoped to have my '77 running by this weekend, but that's not going to happen. It will be running by the end of the weekend though. I've got nothing on the agenda all weekend long that isn't Mustang II related. Drive up Saturday morning to retrieve the new King, bring it home to the shop and shuffle cars around, clean/inspect the new one, and resume the process of getting the new motor and trans into the '77. More news and pics to come.

Lance
'77 Cobra II - 302/C4
'78 Rallye Appearance Package - 302/C4
'78 King Cobra - 351W/T5
'79 Bronco - 429/C6/NP205
'08 Shelby GT 500
'16 Focus RS


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Black sheep
Junior Member

Canada
176 Posts

Posted - 04/19/2017 :  06:49:31 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
and,so it continues.........congrates

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vince_78kc
Junior Member

Canada
359 Posts

Posted - 04/20/2017 :  12:23:40 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Lance - I secretly want you to buy these cars so that in a few years when I'm looking for another project, I know who to call!
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SteelSteeds
Advanced Member

USA
3285 Posts

Posted - 04/20/2017 :  1:43:15 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by vince_78kc

Lance - I secretly want you to buy these cars so that in a few years when I'm looking for another project, I know who to call!


LOL, I know what you mean! I've had those same thoughts about other hoarders I know...

I fully intend to sell two of the ones I currently have, hopefully this year, and put the money into fixing one or two of the others. I've been fired up again the last couple of months, and making good progress. Doing the mechanical work is so much more rewarding than electrical work. That's just frustrating.
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campbell77
New Member

USA
54 Posts

Posted - 04/23/2017 :  11:54:41 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Lance backing his new king into the shop.
[URL=http://s749.photobucket.com/user/Campbell774/media/0EB3A668-A470-40B0-9CB3-8CF8942676FC_zpskdae5h5e.jpg.html][/URL]

74 T-top 2.3 turbo. PDX
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SteelSteeds
Advanced Member

USA
3285 Posts

Posted - 04/24/2017 :  3:47:27 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Well, the retrieval of the new King wasn't without issues, but the car is safely tucked into my shop.
I'd received regular communication from the seller, assuring me that all was good. I reserved a trailer, and she checked in with me to say the car would be ready and they would air up the tires. I guess that means they don't hold air for long...
The drive up went without incident, other than the pouring rain and watching the gas gauge in my Bronco drop like a stone. Upon arrival in Aberdeen, I texted the seller and stopped for a burger. No reply by the time I went to the house, which I found easily enough. I parked near the garage, which the door to was partially open with music audible, but the gate to the driveway was closed. I went to the front door and knocked, but my only greeting was the insane barking of three deranged canines. After several long minutes of this, I went back around to the gate and called out, but the music was quite loud and I got no reply. Tired of standing in the rain, I opened the gate and let myself in. There was a gentleman in the garage, and it turns out he was basically deaf. Nobody else was home, but, there sat the car. On four flat tires. The gentleman was attempting to get a small air compressor running, and failing.

All righty then.

I finally got a text back from the seller, she said she was on her way. I relayed the message about the non-functional compressor, so she said she would get an air tank so we could air up the tires. I killed time by going through the car and inspecting it.
The car was a bit rougher than expected from the photos, but that wasn't entirely surprising. The first real disappointment was that one of the quarter window was broken out, which had not been revealed previously. They gave me a plastic bag and some duct tape to cover it up. My second disappointment was that the battery tray is completely rusted out. I should have asked, I got many pictures of fenders and floorboards, which are all pretty good, so I spaced the battery tray. The only other real rust on the car is around the rear driver's side marker light, and some on the hatch and underside of the hood.
On a positive note, I found the passenger side t-top brace laying in the back of the car! I also found the horn button, or what's left of it...
The hood would not latch, as it was massively out of alignment. The header panel/grill surround has a break in it, so there may have been an impact that threw things off a bit. A few minutes with a ratchet and I was able to get it lined up with the latch. I did *not* want that hood to fly up on the drive home!
The tires, while almost new as far as tread goes, are all severely cracked and dry rotted. Once the air tank arrived, I was able to air up 3 of the tires. The 4th was off the bead, but thankfully the spare held air, so I changed that one out.
Once it was ready to roll, I backed in and left some room to get a run at the trailer. Well, that didn't happen. With three of us pushing with all we had, it rolled forward very slowly, making groaning and grinding sounds. Right. So, a pair of come-alongs were pressed into service.



Fifteen minutes of ratcheting later, the King was on the trailer and strapped down. It was at that point that I was given my biggest disappointment of the day. I was handed an envelope with the documents for the car. Which consisted of a bill of sale.
No title.
The seller didn't think that was a big deal, since I was from out of state. I know it's not a big deal in some states, but it is here. She thought it was in the ad, but the ad actually states twice that the car has a "clean title." In *my* mind, that means you actually have the document in your possession. They claimed that it had been so long, and several moves ago, that they have no idea where it might be. Also claimed that filing for a lost title on something that hasn't been registered since '94 triggers a salvage title. I don't believe that, but will need to do some research and get back to them. Hopefully I'll get some cooperation from them after the sale, but I'm not going to hold my breath.
The drive home was similar to the drive up, though a bit slower.





The weatherstripping on the car is almost non-existent, so I duct-taped the window and t-top seams to keep some of the rain out.






Thankfully when I arrived in Portland, the rain had stopped, so Jeremy (who took the picture in the previous post!) and his brother Jesse helped me shuffle vehicles and unload the King.

This pic is for you, Terry:








So. Looking through the engine compartment at the heavy layers of corrosion on everything, and the various missing pieces, and any thoughts I had of simply trying to get it running with a different carburetor on it evaporated. It will need to be completely gone through. It's still a decent buy, IMO, but not quite the easy project I had hopes for.
And then there's the title issue. I'm not going to do a thing to the car until that can be resolved.

For now, it's in secure, dry storage, and I am back to wrenching on my '77 Cobra II. I'll research my title options and report back. If any WA residents have any insight to offer, I'd welcome the feedback.


Lance
'77 Cobra II - 302/C4
'78 Rallye Appearance Package - 302/C4
'78 King Cobra - 351W/T5
'79 Bronco - 429/C6/NP205
'08 Shelby GT 500
'16 Focus RS



Edited by - SteelSteeds on 04/24/2017 3:56:39 PM
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77Ghiall
Member

Canada
715 Posts

Posted - 04/25/2017 :  1:26:58 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Wow!!!!! that story takes me back to my late 20's when I was into Chevelles, dragging them out of fields, barns and what have you (including snowbanks.....brrrr). Been there, done that!

Hopefully you can resolve the title issue as that could be a deal breaker, too bad she was not a little more honest with you. Note to self, have seller send pictures of Title before purchase.

Love the "stacking hoist", thanks for the pic's...........

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vince_78kc
Junior Member

Canada
359 Posts

Posted - 04/26/2017 :  01:18:55 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
I love seeing these old survivor cars - thanks for sharing the pics! It looks solid...might require a bit more work than expected but I think the price was fair.
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SteelSteeds
Advanced Member

USA
3285 Posts

Posted - 04/26/2017 :  3:21:58 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by vince_78kc

I love seeing these old survivor cars - thanks for sharing the pics! It looks solid...might require a bit more work than expected but I think the price was fair.


I agree, the price was fair. As mentioned above, my biggest disappointment with the car itself was the battery tray:



Not insurmountable, but I have no experience whatsoever with replacing these battery trays with something that looks original. I have the same problem with my white Rallye car, someone foolishly put a piece of foam under the battery, which held water there constantly. It's much farther gone than this King!

I've requested more information on the title problem, we'll see what happens.

Lance
'77 Cobra II - 302/C4
'78 Rallye Appearance Package - 302/C4
'78 King Cobra - 351W/T5
'79 Bronco - 429/C6/NP205
'08 Shelby GT 500
'16 Focus RS


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