This is a diary of your average “Tim the Tool Man Taylor” who has set out to build a Factory Five Roadster (1965 Shelby Cobra).
I am not a “motor head” but I enjoy working with my hands. I have never taken on a project of this size before but once when I was a teenager I replaced the piston rings on my Honda 90 motorcycle. My dad taught me about cars back when you tune a car by listening to the engine as you rotated the distributor.
I have your average set of tools that I have collected over the years. I will mention tools I had to go buy or rent as I go along.
I am attempting this project in a two car garage. I wish I had a bigger place but Santa was all out of 4 car garages this past year.
I know many of you may like to build one of these Cobras for racing but not me. I am building this Cobra just to cruise around it. However there may be an occasional need for speed. If you are interested in racing then you probably won’t make some of the decisions I make along the way.
If you want to see what it takes, stroll through the pages and watch the adventure unfold.
- It all started in July 2003 when I purchased a Mustang donor
- August 2003 – stripping the donor
- September 2003 – pulling the engine
- October 2003 – bye bye donor
- January 2004 – preparing the parts
- March 2004 – engine arrives, the kit arrives, first rivets, installing the front suspension
- April 2004 – steering and rear end installation, a rolling chassis
- May 2004 – pedal box and floor boards, engine and foot boxes
- June 2004 – steering column, front brake lines, rear brake lines
- July 2004 – running the fuel line, brake pedal and engine prep
- August 2004 – gas pedal and battery box
- September 2004 – clutch and engine install, heater modifications, radiator install, rear wiring harness install, more wiring
- October 2004 – air intake manifold install, donor wiring diet, wiring harness and header install, computer and engine wiring
- November 2004 – gauge pod and side pipes, trunk sheet metal and lights, first attempt to start, second attempt to start, third attempt to start
- December 2004 – interior aluminum panel install
- January 2005 – first go kart ride
- February 2005 – putting on the body
- March 2005 – dash wiring and install, dash details, windshield and running lights, gas cap and splash panels, front nose and striker aluminum, trunk hood and doors install
- April 2005 – hood hinge install
- May 2005 – trunk, rear and front bumper install
- June 2005 – wipers and doors
- July 2005 – door latches, seats and emergency brake
- August 2005 – emergency brake, seat belts, mirrors, visors, wind wings and grommet install
- September 2005 – Texas state inspection and registration
- October 2005 – road test
- December 2005 – shake down completed
- January 2006 – body goes to the painter
- February 2006 – more final touches
- March 2006 – waiting for the body
- April 2006 – body meets chassis, done on April 29th
- June 2006 – finish pictures
- November 2006 – adding door panels
- January 2007 – Austin Hotrod Show
- March 2007 – adding power steering
- 2008 in review
- 2009 in review
- 2010 in review
- 2011 in review
- 2012 in review
- 2013 in review
- 2014 in review
- 2015 in review
- 2016 in review