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1961 Mercury Meteor 800 restore

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Hello all,

I thought I would start a thread for the 61 Merc project that I'm starting to tackle. I have allready started tearing into it and I will post pics as I go. The car has 89000 original miles on it and 100% all there. Hope you enjoy the progress.


Edited by Laughing Coyote (see edit history)
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Here's some more pictures of the progress. Rebuilt the power steering pump, generator and radiator tank. I took apart a new lift lever radiator cap and used my old original top and lever so I can keep the original cap. You can see how bad the rust was in the trunk. I did a rough cut on the rust, but have to cut more out.












Edited by Laughing Coyote
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Well, been working on the trunk patch panels that go on the sides so far. Had to make templates and hand hammer them to fit the curve of the floor sides. Used a shot bag and body hammers to do this. They fit pretty nice. Now I just have to paint the fuel tank support bar and get ready to start welding in the patch panels and clean them up. Then start on the back half of the trunk. I also pulled off the drivers door and rear panels and they still had the original plastic on it. I also included some before and after pictures of the rear ashtrays. Will post more as it progresses.








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I know Roger. The rust ate into the sides pretty bad and the replacement pan won't go that far to cover. It's proven to be a challenge but making progress. Once the sides are all finished then the pan will be fitted, welded and ready to seal and undercoat. As for the ashtrays, I used a buffer with hard and soft buffing wheels. Used a medium buffing compound on the hard wheel and a fine compound on the soft wheel. They came out pretty good. The insides I used a small wire brush to knock of the heavy stuff. Then came back in with 400 grit sandpaper and got it as smooth as I could. Then a green scotch brite pad and a final wipe down with laquer thinner. Then I sprayed the inside with Rust Oleum "chrome" spray paint. I know its not real chrome, but it looks really nice and it actually has a good reflection after it dries. Not like the bright silver paint that they say is chrome. The secret is to get it area smooth just like you are painting a car and it lays down nice and give a good finish. I'm using it just to bring back a luster in areas that aren't really going to be seen unless you look.

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Thanks GaWajn,

You have a nice project going yourself. I should have some more pictures coming next week. Hope to have the trunk pan all finished inside and out by Xmas.:rolleyes: Here are some pictures of one of my earlier project. Never built a bike before. Watched a lot of those bike shows and figured if they can do it I can too. Had it for a couple of years and enjoyed it and then decided to move on to a car. That way the whole family can go some where.








Edited by Laughing Coyote (see edit history)
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Been working the trunk side pieces still.:rolleyes: One side is starting to take shape and not look to bad. It's been a challange to get the curve to flow right. I undercoated the fuel tank support bar on the inside and drilled holes for spot welding for when the pan goes in. I just have to work the worst side and be ready for the pan fit and finish.




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  • 2 weeks later...

Hope all you folks had a nice Turkey day. I got back on the trunk and got all the side trim pieces done and trimed out for the pan. I have it all posistioned where it's going to go now I just have some final trimming and will be ready to weld it in. Hope to be seam seeling it in a week and then the final coating.





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Thanks, but I have more to do to get to the final result. The gold looking pegs are called "Clecos" They are used alot in the aircraft sheetmetal industry. They are like having little hands holding everything in place why your working. I will attach a video of how they work (hopefully it works). You can buy them on Ebay for about $20 a set. Hope this answered your question.

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I got the trunk pan all welded in and cleaned up this past weekend. Now I have to clean the old trunk coating and get everything de greased and ready for the seam seeler. Once that sets up then its time for the final texture coat. After that's all cured then I will be rolling the old girl out and get it up on stands and power wash the under side to get it cleaned. Then back in and garage and start getting ready to undercoat and paint the frame and body pan.



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  • 2 weeks later...

The trunk repair is coming along and all I have left to do is the final seal coating of the trunk and I will be done. I cleaned the trunk area and pan, then seam sealed it and sprayed a coat of undercoating on it to give the final sealer a rough surface to bond with. Should be ready to do that this weekend if the weather stays some what warm.






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The trunk pan repair is now completed. Finished it out with a bed liner coating to give it the texture like the original spray in coating. I also attached a before and after picture of the horns. I also had my neighbor who is a electronics whizz check out the radio. He found one bad tube and decided to change out just about every capacitor since it was 50+ years old. Basicly redid the entire radio. He also made a modification so I can hook up an MP3 player with out changing the look or any other parts of the radio. Just had to add a few wires and resistors and now I can listen to updated tunes or just AM. Works like new. I hope to start to tear into the rear differential shortly.





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Well I have been picking at different parts on the car and I decided to pull out the heater fan motor since it was easy picking and not alot of work to remove it. Went to check it out and no go. Disassembled it and found the the board that holds the brushes was broken. I repaired the board and reassembled it and it works nice now. Cleaned it up and repainted it. Looks like new. I also pulled the heater housing of the fire wall. It had a good size hole where some on kicked it. I repaired that and in the process of the final detailing of the housing. I will post the pictures of the progress. Found alot of goodies in the defroster vents too. Suprised they even blew out any air with all the stuff in them.

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Here are some pictures of the blower motor all ready to go. I also included pictures of the heater housing. After doing the reapir I spray painted the housing with a dark grey primer that was very close to the original fiberglass color. Then I used a acid brush and fanned out the bristles so I can duplicate the light color fiberglass strands in the housing. I used white craft paint. After I did the faux strands I then lightly hit areas with the primer again to knock down the brightness of it. Once dried I applied a semi gloss poly clear to give it that factory sheen and bring the darker color back. Then I painted the rivets with silver model paint and then assembled the back panel. Just have to work the heater core and water control valve and it's off my list. Now onto the emergency brake assy.












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Well I finally got the rear seats pulled and was able to see what was hiding under there. Just your typical loose change, gum wrappers, and more beer can openers. I cleaned it out and wiped everything down so I can see what I will need to do for the back half of the floor. Not too much rust, at least not as bad as the trunk. Still has good metal except for the left passenger side floor pan which has a few bad spots. I guess I will be doing another pan job. At least it's not as big as the trunk. I will fabricate this one from scratch. I know they have after market ones, but they don't look the same. I also pulled the parking brake assembly and drivers side fresh air vent. I sandblasted them and gave them a fresh coat of paint. I will post some photos tomorrow.

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Thanks guys. Having a blast doing this restore. I know some of the pictures are not that great, but a cell phone and a dim lit garage doesn't help. I got the foam material for the internal heater box doors. Got it from McMaster Carr. It's 1/4" thick and has an adhesive backing to it. A 24" x 24" sheet was $12.00. Just like the factory foam padding. Works great. The number for it is 86225K53. I also attached the photos of the back half of the inside of the car. Not much excitement to it. I will try to start to fab up a new pan in a day or so. I'm shooting for early February to have the floor all coated and done. I will post the progress of the floor pan as I go. I can't wait to get it a done and drive it.








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I made my template and fabricated the new floor patch pan. I know it's not a OEM Ford replacement part, but you can't beat the price.:D Now just have to set some time aside to start cutting and preping to install it. Hope to have it all in in a few weeks and ready to seal it up.





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Yep, a few hours of shaping and we have a pan. You're right Roger, the after market ones just didn't look all that good. Wanted to keep it looking like a factory stamping. As far as making it Landman. I made a simple die and form. Then used my neighbors 20 ton press and made a good inprint. Then I used some round bar and a shot bag and pounded away to get it where I wanted it. A bead roller would be nice. Thought of buying one, but would have to do more of this work to make it a worth while investment.

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Well I decided to start the pan next week. I took the power booster of the firewall to check it out and it's not bad, but a rebuild will be in order for it. I also starting to work the drivers fresh air vent that was missing a louver and the bottom piece. Looked all over the place for a replacement and no luck. So I will fabricate a few pieces and mold in the rest and clean it up. Fresh coat of paint and that will be done.



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Looks like I'm not going to have much time this week to tackle the pan repair. Worked on some smaller parts. I was able to get the master cylinder cleaned up. Sand blasted it and put a coat of clear on it to seal it up. I will be blasting the outsides of the power booster so that will be ready for the rebuild kit when I get it. I also finished the fresh air vent and voltage regulator. Just waiting for the decals so I can put the final clear on it and put in the done pile with everything else so far.








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Today I had to make another little patch panel that will have to go on the side area of the pan I have to replace. At least it was a simple one. Since I had the steering wheel pulled I cleaned it up and started to repair the cracks. I had a friend of mine get me some good adhesive they use in the aviation world. Needless to say if it works on a jet that does 9 g's then I think it will work on a steering wheel. I also took my heater core to a radiator shop and had them double check it. It's shot and I can't find replacement. So I figured if it's no good I would de-solder the ends and try to find a new core blank. Just have to do some research. I'm sure someone makes them.





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It's been a busy week last week so I didn't get much car time. I did manage to change out 6 body rubber mounts and got the pan clipprd in. Now I just have to pull it back out, clean it up and weld it in. Then I can do the side patch and get ready to re-seal all the seams in the floor and getting looking pretty again. The adhesive I used on the steering wheel is all cured and ready to start sanding on it. Still have a bunch to seal up.



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