I’ve been working for close to 2 weeks on the pushbutton start / ignition system with RFID security. I’m not mentioning the companies name because I dont think it was an issue with them. They gave me good support and I believe they make a good product. I just dont believe their product is designed to work well with my setup.
So I gave up. I tried so many different ways, but every time I overcame one issue, something else wasn’t working as designed. And I mean the problems changed… one time the RFID wouldn’t program but the starter did kick in. When I fixed the RFID, then the starter would only engage when releasing the button. It just went on and on and I finally gave up. In 15 minutes, I removed the pushbutton start / RFID and had the Factory 5 keyed ignition installed and everything working.
With the keyed ignition, the Boss 427 finally gets to turn over! (Sorry about the noise in the video… had the big shop fan running)
And finally, my custom made gauges from Speedhut arrived. I designed everything about these… the font, the tick styles, the needles, the colors. The speedo is GPS driven. Although its a totally modern setup, yes the speedo operates backwards just like the original AC Ace and the Shelby Cobra.
History on the backwards speedo goes back to the AC Ace, the car that the Cobra was created from. Rumour is that when originally designing and building the car, the mechanical cable that ran from the transmission to the speedo was turning “anti-clockwise”. Normally, this would be fixed by a small gearbox on the back of the speedo. But AC decided to not add additional parts and simply operate the speedo backwards. When AC lost their engine contract and Carroll Shelby approached them with the idea of placing a Ford small block V8 in their car, he opted to leave it as is because he thought it was cool.
While I’m not building an exact replica by any means, I am proud to pay respect to the original in several ways. This is one.
And just as a side note, the 427 Cobra soon became the fastest production car in the world, capable of 0-100 and back to zero in less than 10 seconds. Backwards speedo or not. 🙂
Worked for a week on the engine front accessories. I’m running a 1-wire alternator, standard rotation Ford Racing water pump and power steering. After lots of research and looking, I decided on a setup from Jones Machine Racing Products. They make everything in house, including their power steering pumps and alternators. After buying their kit for a small block Ford, of course I ran up against a few potholes. First, the power steering pump with integrated reservoir would not install… hits the steering shaft hard. So had to trade in for a slightly different pump with a remote reservoir. This means I also had to buy the material to make a -10AN supply hose.
Installing the crankshaft and water pump pullies was no issue. But did find that since the small block Ford kit is designed for a 302 and not a 351 based engine, ahem, the deck height is different and required a new, longer belt. Jones got me the right belt (with a spare!) and accepted the trade of my kit belts.
Now to install the alternator… looks like the kit is setup for a different standard rotation waterpump as some of the standoffs are not right. Quick call to Jones and they got the proper parts coming to me right away. One more quick hacksaw adjustment to the standoff behind the alternator to line up the pullies and voila… we have accessories!
Tomorrow I’ll finish up the heavy electrical and see if the car accepts power. Heard my custom gauge set from Speedhut is on its way…
Here’s another gratuitous picture of my girl because, hey, it’s my blog!
Difficult to show electrical work, which is most of what I’ve been doing. Brother Bwana came up for a long weekend and even though I was battling sickness, I took advantage of the help to get the engine and transmission in. Just FYI, here’s some details: You know the engine (Ford crate Boss 427W). Parts I had to order and add: Ford billet steel zero balance flywheel, McLeod Super Street Pro clutch, all ARP bolts, Quick Time bellhousing and a Tremec TKO600 5 speed transmission with the cruiser overdrive.
So we got the engine in and secured. Bwana headed back to Asheville and I went into a medicated coma for about a week.
Took about 2 days to get it all wired in… and it wont turn on. Lots of troubleshooting later and I’ve done everything right. Both the RFID and the ignition will come on, but then cut right out again. Hint: I dont have a battery hooked up yet, so was using a 6amp 12v battery charger…
After talking to the head engineer at Watson’s, we figured the issue was the power source I was using. He suggested getting a good charged battery installed and properly wired and then try it. I tend to agree.
So lets do some battery! Not a lot to show, except I’m custom building every cable. 4ga from battery + to start solenoid, 4ga from battery – to chassis ground, 4ga from chassis ground to engine block. Also a 10ga from the alternator + to a cutoff switch and then to the battery +, and a 10ga negative cable from the alternator case to the engine block.
Still have some small details to finish up, but will be slapping some battery power to the Boss tomorrow! Hope I dont let all the smoke out…
I came up from Asheville for a long weekend to work with Boyd on The Boss. We spent two days of full-on work. Saturday was spent assembling the transmission to the engine and all that that entails.
A healthy flywheel mounts to the end of the engine crankshaft, then there’s a clutch, pressure plate, bell housing, assorted clutch actuators, then the transmission.
One item held us up significantly: three small pins that align the pressure plate to the flywheel. We did not have these and could not go any further without them. Luckily, we found them at a local Ford dealer. We had to wait several hours, but the dealer came through and we got back to work.
Been keeping busy on the Boss, just not doing stuff that’s very photogenic. Lots of wiring up switches and running harness’s mostly. Started working on the footbox fans and will update you on that later, but for now…
My brother Bwana came up from Asheville for a long weekend and we decided it was time to do some major stuff. He got to dig in and turn some wrenches on The Boss, so I’m going to let him do a Guest Blogger Entry and post his own pics and update. Keep watching… but here’s a teaser