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RPM PROJECT CAR

1: One step forward and another step back. Michael Lee of Mykal’s Custom opted to pull the stretched fenders off and work on the custom Harwood fi erglass hood and mounting points for the Ring Brothers billet hinges.

WING AND A PRAYER story by

PART 24 >>Project aPocalypSe Horse gets a new pro stock wing and inches closer to paint

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art 24. Twenty FOUR. This project has been such a long time coming we’ve been tempted more than once to just stop counting. But this

april 2016 | RPM Magazine

isn’t some sugar-coated pseudo-reality mag. This is RPM. We give it to you straight and the truth is this project has taken longer than we thought it would. However we have hope that it just might

be coming to a real milestone very soon. Working toward that goal has been Michael Lee of Mykal’s Custom Autobody. This month, Lee tackled the task of working on the

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Toby Brooks

as-yet-unfinished custom stretched Harwood cowl induction hood, reworking the custom Ring Brothers billet hinges, and getting the body prepped for paint. With the front fenders


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2: Lee added several layers of fi erglass to the opening for the 2014 Boss Mustang heat extractors we decided to put in the hood. The added thickness provided enough material to flush the vents for a smooth, integrated look. off nd the body stripped to bare mtal, we are clinging to hope that it will only get better from here. To begin, Lee added several layers of fiberglass to the undersurface of the hood to add strength and also provide adequate material so that he could sink the factory take-off 2014 Boss Mustang heat extractors into the top surface. Using his newly-acquired AlumiCraft/GoToBlocks billet aluminum sanding blocks, Lee created a stepped lip in

3: With the additional layers of fi erglass set up on the bottom side, Lee turned his attention to the top of the hood, where he transcribed the factory 2014 Boss heat extractor flange o the opening he cut previously. Using the small block from Alumicraft, he then sanded in a relief to allow the unit to sit flush

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both openings that would allow him to flush mount the grilles for the sleek, integrated look we were after. Anything less would have looked tacky and disrupted from the clean lines we are after. While Lee suffered through the unmistakable pain and itch of working fiberglass and trying to avoid inhaling the dust, talented fabricator Mark DePriest of Badd Habit Customs decided to play the role of wing man... literally.

5: This set of billet aluminum sanding blocks from AlumiCraft/ GoToBlocks has come in handy already. We got them for Lee and he says they have been a great addition to his tool arsenal. This set retails for $199.

4: The finished piece sits flush just like the factory intended, giving our Harwood hood added style and helping to keep underhood temperatures down.

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8 6 & 7: Our pal Mark DePriest builds some of the baddest wings we’ve ever seen, so we were happy when he asked about not only scratch-building one for our project but also installing it himself. His craftsmanship is superb and his attention to detail is second to none. After fabricating a sick adjustable wickerbill aluminum wing in his shop in West Virginia, DePriest travelled all the way to Illinois to install it. Using a local 2005-2009 Mustang as a guide, DePriest whipped up a tight-fitting top that hugs the rear line of the deck lid without actually touching, then also bent up some trick heavy duty spill plates on his sheetmetal brake to finish it off. Although the piece could have been built from carbon fiber or even a lighter-gauge aluminum, we opted for the increased

durability of a thicker material on the sides. With the piece cleko-pinned in place and supported on a body stand, DePriest then marked the mounting points for a set of cool adjustable supports from Ed Quay Race Cars. Although the struts come equipped with a quick pin to make opening the deck or hatch relatively painless in the event they are mounted to the bumper, DePreist made trunk access even easier by attaching them to the lower portion of the trunk lid.

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8: Here you can see the tight fit of the wing right up to (but not touching) the top surface of the decklid. The wickerbill at the trailing edge is adjustable using stainless button-headed fasteners. The spill plates contour nicely with the factory quarter panel and overall the added length really helps to balance out the proportions of the car with the 5-inch stretched nose. 9: With the brackets mounted to the rear of the decklid and cleko-pinned in place, DePriest propped the wing up on a body stand to mark the mounting points for the Ed Quay wing support struts.

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RPM PROJECT CAR DePreist mounted the wing temporarily, and after he was satisfied with the end result, he pulled it back off o that Lee could get back to work on the rest of the body in preparation for paint. The first task was to pull the factory steel back to bare metal before closely scanning for dents, dings, and other

10 10 & 11: The lightweight support struts from Ed Quay Race Cars added form and function, providing some much needed rigidity and stability...not to mention a really cool look. The best part is that thanks to the shape of the Mustang decklid, the lower attachment points did not have to be mounted to the bumper, making opening the trunk much easier. Additionally, the vertical opening of the Mustang factory hinges meant we didn’t have to worry about added weight pulling the lid closed. Score!

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imperfections. “Even on newer cars like this, there are oftentimes small waves and ripples in the factory sheetmetal, especially in areas like the door handles and wheel openings where the metal was stamped,” said Lee. To combat that problem, he applied a light skim coat of body filler and started the first of five


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12: Before moving forward, Lee sanded the car down to bare metal. We can’t wait to see some color on this steel!

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13: Lee shaved the factory third brake light opening, lock opening, and other mounting holes in the deck lid before applying a skim coat of filler o the bare metal. The vast majority of what you see here will be sanded completely away.

14: There’s no one to blame for this pock-marked roof other than Mother Nature. It seems our Ford suffe ed at the hands of a mild West Texas hail storm at some point. Lee scanned the surface and added filler as needed.

rounds or more of slow, tedious, but completely necessary block sanding to whip the Ford into shape. Helping the cause again were our new set of AlumiCraft Grilles/ GoToBlocks billet

sanding blocks, making quick work of the task and ensuring that the body lines remain laser straight. Although it seems like a lot of filler initially, by the time it has been adequately blocked,

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RPM PROJECT CAR the reality is that very little filler will remain. As usual, we were working away right up to press time and didn’t quite get the Horse in primer like we had hoped, but tune in next month as we get closer to paint,

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have Nitrous Supply plumb our intake, and finally start putting some color on some of the other parts and pieces...as we continue our quest to usher in the Second Coming of Pro Street!

15 & 16: Again using the GoToBlocks, Lee tackled the sheetmetal to get it ready for the first oat of primer. Although tedious, this process of block sanding, heavy primer/fille , and repeating up to fi e or six times is what separates a typical backyard paint job from a show-quality one. There are no shortcuts if you want that laser-straight look. Check out all the dust on the fl or...that’s evidence of the job being done right!

SOURCES Mykal’s Custom Autobody http://on.fb.me/1mJcqMx 618.842.7676

Harwood Industries www.eharwood.com 800.822.3392

Ring Brothers www.ringbrothers.com 608.588.7399

AlumiCraft/GoToBlocks www.alumicraft.com 814.742.7405

Mark DePriest/Badd Habit Customs Keyser, West Virginia 304.813.6459

Ed Quay Race Cars www.edquay.com 800.447.5786

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1604 part 24 wing and a prayer  

Part 24 Wing and A Prayer