Cougar Restoration

01-20-2004, 10:44 AM
Just thought it would be interesting to post the details from my 1968 Cougar resto project on this forum.
Let me first start by saying never, ever, ever buy a cougar without thoroughly checking the front floor pans and torque boxes. I didnt know what a torque box was when I bought my cougar and ended up with many headaches because of it. The torque boxes in these cars are a major headache to remove and replace. If you dont have the ambition or the tools, dont buy the car.
That said I am enjoying the resto process as a whole.

Progress has been slow to date but since g/f moved out I have had more time to put in on the car. Hopefully will finish up with the floor pans/torque boxes this week as well as patching up some minor holes in trunk. The engine has been removed, rebuilt and waiting to be reinstalled. The interior has been gutted. Most of the chrome on the car is in pretty good shape. I have another parts cougar so I will just have to mix and match for the best part. Gas tank has been removed and painted. Tranny still need to be cleaned thoroughly as the car had an oil leak sometime in the past. Exhaust system removed and front brake system rebuilt. Am also cleaning and painting engine compartment this week or next week. I will try to keep this updated as the work progresses. And hopefully by late spring I will have some pictures of the completed project on this forum. That is if someone can tell me how to post pictures. Later.

01-24-2004, 09:46 AM
cant wait to see those pics,not to many people into cougars..i have had 2,a 69 and a 75...69 351 windsor 75 police 460 package..not bad performance from either one good luck with your restore....

03-15-2004, 07:52 PM
i have a 70 cougar, i love it. i did not have the tools to do the box job so i had to pay the big bucks but it was well worth it. not fully restored but not a bad car. 351 C. 5-speed. love it.

04-08-2004, 10:42 PM
Been busier with school this semester than I planned. Got all the sheet metal work done and started on engine compartment. Then decided to remove tranny and rebuild it. LOL. Cant get the damn speedo cable to disconnect. Gonna try again this weekend. If it doesnt come out I dont know what Im gonna do.

04-14-2004, 10:08 PM
Gave up on the transmission. It will just have to wait for a rebuild. I dropped the motor back in this evening and dry fit everything. Looks great. Everything is going together. Couldnt find the motor mount bolts. duh. So had to go buy some. Bought a new fly wheel also. Realized the old one was missing teeth. Air filter sits a little high so will have to put on a scoop or get a smaller filter. Havent decided yet. Would like to do a cowl induction hood but not sure how that will work on a Cougar hood.

04-18-2004, 10:50 AM
Try a smaller air cleaner first. A custom cowl hood get into a whole big bodywork issue and it sounds as if your hands are full anyways. Is the intake manifold not stock?? Maybe try a 14 inch air cleaner with a 1 or 1.5 inch K&N element.
I hear you on torque boxes too. I learned about them on my '67 Lincoln.
A buddy had a '70 Couger convertible which collapsed in the middle from rusty torque boxes. After he drove over the curb at the foot of his drivway, the doors would not open.

06-04-2004, 11:09 PM
YAY!!! The cat is runnin. Not driving yet but at least it runs. Just got the exhaust from Fed Ex two days ago. Had to do some cutting so its going on slow. Bought another cougar and someone chopped a hole in the hood so Im gonna use it on this car so I dont have to buy a new air filter. This car is going to get sold when Im done anyway. The new one is in better shape than my present project. The only major project left is to get the new trunk floor extensions welded in and paint the beast. Just need to get some bits and pieces and should be able to drive it soon. I want it done and sold so I can start on my other Cougar: white with marroon interior which is near mint, torque boxes are in great shape as well as all the frame rails, should only need floor pans and body work. Going to use the money from the first Cougar to finance a better build for the second one. Just have to decide on a stroked 302 or a stock 390. Wont have the fundage to stroke the 390. If anyone has any advice on this then let me know. Later all.

Mike Cougar
06-18-2004, 06:53 PM
Hi , I'm new to the forum and new owner of 1967 Cougar .
It's been years since I've been into Hot Muscle cars . Gave it up to raise a family . Now they are all grown and , it's time to have some fun !
I picked up a '67 Cougar w/289 V4 . The body is in fairly good shape and should be alright with just a good coat of paint and minor fixing .
The last motor I beefed up was a little 260 in an old '64 Falcon . That was in 1970 while I was in high school . So , it's been a long time for this guy but , I can't wait to pull the small block in this "cat" and start having fun .
You guys have a nice forum here .

06-20-2004, 06:34 AM
Can anyone tell me how many 1967 (S) code 390 GT standard hardtop Cougars were ordered with the bench seat.

08-04-2004, 09:18 PM
Ran into some issues. Thought I had the car all set to drive but all of a sudden it wouldnt turn over. The starter would engage but wouldnt crank the motor over. Replaced the starter but that didnt help. Thought maybe the tranny pump had seized because I ran it without fluid for a little while. Pulled the motor out far enough to hand turn the torque converter and found tranny not seized. Was the motor itself. Really started freaking out at this point. Pulled the motor and started disassembly only to discover that when I pulled the heads the motor was very easy to turn by hand. Checked the pushrods and lo and behold they were way TOOOOOOOO long. Ooops. The valve springs were binding and thats why motor wouldnt crank. Replaced the pushrods this week and dropped motor back in. Had to buy a bunch of new gaskets and deal with the headache of pulling and replacing motor. AGAIN! Going to spend all day tomorrow reassembling stuff and hope to have it running, AGAIN, and have good news for everyone. lol Steve

08-20-2004, 01:00 AM
Yahooooo. Its running!!!! IT LIVES. Just gotta finish up interior and tune motor then it will be for sale. Check out my ad and description in the buy/section of the forums. Drove it around a bit and it has gobs of more power than it did with stock engine setup.

11-13-2004, 09:52 PM
My 1968 Cougar is finally as complete as Im going to make it. Its running great and looks pretty good for a car in primer grey. Check the buy/sell section for more details. Interior is complete and its running excellent. I have too many projects now and need to thin them out before winter. I have lots of pics of the car if anyone is interested.

11-27-2004, 12:33 AM
I just got a 68 cougar today and i know it's bad to start up an old thread but i was wondering how much you ahd to spend on your restoration, i jsut wanted to see how muhc money i'd have to spend.

12-01-2004, 07:27 AM
Well integraboy, it really depends on what kind of initial shape the car is in. Does it need major body work? How rusted is the underbody? How does the motor run? What does the interior need? What parts can be reused? ETC. If you give me some idea of the cars condition I can better help you. Steve

12-01-2004, 09:25 PM
Well i don't have the car yet it's getting towed to me this weekend since the car has been sitting for 17 years. The engine does ruin the carburator judt needs to be rebuilt but most likely i'm throwing in a new engine. The 1/4's are rusted through but comes with brand new ones and same with the floor pans. The interior is in decent shape but couldn' see muhc when i was looking at it since a bucnh of stuff was in the car. but once i get it i'll give more detail since it was getting dak at the time and don't remmeber to much but i got a great deal on it only 300, includig the free parts and all.

01-13-2005, 10:07 PM
I just bought a 1968 Cougar XR7. I can't seem to find body parts anywhere online. I was wondering if you know anywhere that I can go to find some "good deals".

01-24-2005, 10:40 PM
Wish I could say Cougar parts are easy to find but sadly they arent. There are aftermarket rear quarters for 69-70 Cougars and thats about it. There are patch panels for some pieces but they are primarily Mustang patches adapted for the Cougar. You can try for used parts. Its in michigan however and will probably cost a fortune to ship body pieces. Good luck. Oh. I would also keep tabs on ebay. I buy and sell many Cougar parts there. Steve. I also have some 68 Cougar fenders and a hood for sale on ebay. Will eventually have some doors for sale.

07-11-2005, 06:46 PM
On that 302 4V (If its an orginal 68 302) the valves on those heads are oversized for racing. Also note that the Cooling ports are larger than the gasket holes when you put the heads back on. I bought a 68 california car and never a had a problem with overheating until I moved to New Mexico. Took me forever to find this "little" deal that restricted flow. The car would slowly overheat on hot days 40-50 miles down the road.

That 302 is an expensive one to find the parts for as the difference between the 68 and 69 can be night and day.

07-11-2005, 06:56 PM
The 67 is easier to find parts for than the 68. The 68 is a little weird. Most came with 390's and VERY few came with 302's just enough to get the thing on the track. The frontend on the 68 really couldn't handle the 390's torque and weight.

My 4v was very tight and I traded it out for a FI 302 out of a 95 Van and $500 boot to me. Since porting and polishing a 68 302 will pick up 50 hp without any other modifications(Because of those wonderful heads).

I intend to build up my 68 with more modern and light weight 302.

I had plans for putting a 352 interceptor in there but you really need one of the cars that orginally had a 390 in it to use that engine.

12-07-2006, 01:58 PM
Well back in the day, There were a lot of Cougars using the Mustang style Teardrop hood. I remember seeing several...Just a thought. I know Crites sells some

Frank MW
02-02-2007, 12:19 PM
I am rebuilding a 1968 cougar. Does anyone know of any web sites or any one that I could go to find interior parts. I found a dash but I need door handles, door panels and window cranks and I also am looking for the electronic sequencer for the tail lights.
Frank MW

Muscle love
05-04-2008, 07:00 PM
Hello everyone. I am restoring my 1973 cougar xr7 and i need both front fenders and and the front clippings and bumper. Does anyone know where i could possibly obtain these parts? If so please email me at

05-04-2008, 07:06 PM
Please check the date of the last post in the thread and avoid replying if that date is longer than 3 months from the current date.You can start a new thread with your request, rather than resurrect an old one.

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