A 51-Year Survivor’s Tale: Rob Simons’ 1969 Mach I Mustang

Most of the general onlookers who notice Rob Simons’ 1969 Mach We Mustang at car shows merely don’t understand the significance of the vehicle. They think it’s just another Mustang that could use a new paint work or reupholstery work. They’ll request Rob why he has it moved into in the show. He just huge smiles, knowing just how rare his “survivor” Mustang is.

To the general onlooker, it’s a car appearing to be an excellent candidate for restoration. To Take advantage of Simons and other hardcore enthusiasts, traveling this Mach I is like really stepping back over 50 many years back into time.

Many high-end auto shows determine their survivor categories with the requirements of “original body paint, framework, upholstery, engine compartment, etc . that are basically as delivered. ” Definitions may further specify that a survivor can be “50-percent unrestored, un-refinished, or unaltered; and retains qualities good enough for a guide for restoration of a vehicle just like it. ”

“Everybody modifies a Mustang, ” Simon says. “You don’t observe survivor muscle cars. In my better St . Louis area, I have the only real survivor muscle car from some of the shows I’ve attended. Guys whom realize what it is think it’s amazing. ”

Maybe the particular years haven’t been overly type to the ‘ol girl over 5 decades. Time may have been harsh at the paint and striping, but you are usually touching an original 1969 Mach I actually.

Though “survivor” has become a buzzword in today’s sophisticated auto auctions, Rob’s Mustang was obviously a survivor before the phraseology arrived to popularity. “For me, it’s usually held that interest that the Mustang is as original as possible, ” he admits that. “I got her going in 2016, but I’ve owned this vehicle since May of 1978. ”

A couple of weeks after this individual bought the car, he met their bride, Lisa. At first, he could not afford two cars, so this individual bought a $50 junker to drive within the rain and snow and held the Mustang out of the weather. “She sat unless the weather was fairly, ” Simon remembers. “Lisa and am got married in 1982 and relocated to Houston. That weather was going to rip her up, so I brought the girl back to St . Louis in 1983 and put her into my brother’s garage. It sat there till we moved back to Illinois within 1987. ”

  The stock FMX transmission is still working fine. The final time I changed the essential oil was in 1979. I have not handled it. I fired the car support in 2016, and she took off. – Rob Simon

When he parked the Mustang, Simon had filled the container with unleaded gas to the top. Anytime they returned to The state of illinois, he started the car. “When we shifted back, I started her in my own garage, ” he says. “By the time 1990 rolled around, the girl said I’m not going to start any longer. The upper part of the engine had full of varnish from that rotten gasoline, literally a quarter-inch thick. ”

The original 351 Windsor engine and the stock nine-inch Kia rearend are still in place. Simons offers stocked the trunk with OE and upgraded items to use, yet he just can’t bring himself in order to swap anything out until essential.

In 2014, Rob decided it was time to have the old girl out and back again on the road. “Rotating the engine manually when I started working on her, We bent a whole bunch of pushrods and bumped the rocker stud out of the mind, ” he says. “It shocked me personally to see that kind of damage. I actually pulled the heads off, reworked them, and put the hardened control device seats in it. I hit the road once again with her in 2016. Aside from getting the heads redone, replacing rubberized brake lines, and other rubber items, she’s all 50-year-old stuff. ”

As the second proprietor of the car, Simons bought the particular Mustang from a girl who acquired bought it new in 1969. “She told me a tree fell around the hood, ” he says. “There can be checking in the original striping contained in the bondo used to repair it in the tree. I left it with regard to keeping her as original as is possible. ”

Rob lets us know that the interior is absolutely original. Whenever he was much younger, he or she pulled the original AM radio instead of a stereo system. “A guy had been willing to give me $800 if I may find the original radio. Now, I am searching for one myself. ”

The driver’s door has been stolen when the original owner acquired the Mustang as well. “She visited visit her grandma in The month of january, and someone stole the door from it, ” he says. “So, that is different. ”

And had to put in an aluminum rad due to an eventual overheating issue. Simons still has the original rad with factory tabs.   This individual originally attempted to have a radiator recovery shop rebuild the original, but the excessive heating persisted, so he changed to a new aluminum model.

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He has stored the original yet unusable hardware from the car, like the radiator. It is very permissible to maintain survivor car status, yet replace consumable components that can’t withstand the normal test of time.

He or she added the exhaust to the vehicle when he first got the vehicle. “It’s an open differential, ” he admits that. “It came as a single exhaust system originally. You could get single exhaust Mach Mustang back then. The exhaust that is on it now, I made once i was 19 years old. ”

Contributing to his stored original components, Take advantage of still has the original wheels and tires, combined with the original spare and jack within the trunk. “What’s on it now are usually 17-inch Torque Thrust wheels from the Mustang GT. The original wheels and tires are usually stored, but I don’t trust all of them after all these years. ”

When you look into the internal, it is original, yet imperfect. The particular seats are not really torn upward too badly for the car’s age group, but the dash exhibits the possible risks with time with some cracking.

Simon laughs as he tells their radio story. “I did change the AM radio, ” Take advantage of says. “A 19-year-old kid desires a good radio. So , I picked up the AM radio and put a good aftermarket radio in it. I clearly remember after moving into our house regarding ten years ago, cleaning up and tossing the old AM radio away. Besides that, it’s all the way it came from the particular factory. ”

Whether it is OEM original decals or several bumper and windshield stickers in the ’80s, they show off the Mustang’s life as a cared-for driver.

When Rob made a decision to get the car back out, it had been like all the memories flooded in, and he was thrilled to get the girl back out of the garage. “I’m no emotional person, ” he says. “Truly, I am not. But when I very first pulled her out of the garage, provided her a bath in 2015, opened the door, and sat straight down in the seat, I bawled like a child. ”

Simons has been at a big car show plus there were no other survivors around. He or she told himself he couldn’t perform anything to it. Looking at all of the little hardware that was original from 1969, he rationalized that if he wished to modify one, he would go purchase another Mustang and leave this alone.

Take advantage of intends to keep his survivor just like it is, even though he’s more economically stable now and could restore this if he wanted to do so. “Once college was paid for, the cars purchased, and I had a little change inside my pockets around 2014, I began thinking about waking her back up, ” he says. “I had this lengthy laundry list I wanted to do. I used to be thinking I would put an Endstück Four-Valve in it, five-speed transmission, plus was going to put an Explorer four. 11 positraction differential in the back again because they bolt in. I could possess turned her into the car I usually wanted. It is my intention how to leave her alone, drive the girl, and enjoy her. ”

He changed his mind 5 or six times, thinking about repairing the Windsor, upgrading things, the entire nine yards. “Right when I had been getting to it, I looked at the whiteboard at work where I had place all this down, ” Rob states. “I had saved the money to purchase this stuff, and a light switch proceeded to go off in my mind. ”

What caught our eyesight when we first saw the car in a St . Louis area car display was a simple paper on the splash that showed Simons at 2 very different ages, with the same vehicle.

So , he’s left the car just as he recalls it from the past and will maintain it like this. He’ll continue to take it in order to car shows and smile once the naysayers ask him why this individual doesn’t “fix it up. ” Plus, he’ll revel in the admiration of these who appreciate the Mustang when they see the sheet of paper on the windscreen that shows a teenaged Take advantage of in front of the same car.

This post was originally published on this site

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