Jesse of BarnFinds.com shared this story of a barn find with this ’64 ½ first generation Ford mustang back in June, 2014. It is a very interesting take on an iconic American muscle which Jesse and the team of Barn Finds chronicled from the time they bought the Wimbledon white ’64 ½ Mustang from a seller they stumbled upon Craigslist for a price tag of $3,500; until the Mustang’s sojourn during the 2014 Northwest Classic Rally; and finally until it was auctioned in October of the same year.
It wasn’t in Jesse’s checklist to buy any car during that time, but he saw the Craigslist ad for the Mustang with a very tempting price of $3,500, he know that he has to go out and personally take a look. After a little haggling, he went home as the happy, new owner of a ’64 ½ Mustang with a rock bottom price of $2,800. According to Jesse, other than the exhaust being shot and the clutch pedal that badly needs adjusting, the 200 cubic inch inline-six engine otherwise runs great. “There is just something cool about old Mustangs that everyone can appreciate. Ours drove like a truck, but everyone else seemed to loved it,” Jesse said. There was rust in the rear quarters and a few other small spots here and there, but overall the body is straight without any major damage.
Upon arrival back home, they were pleased to find upon further inspection that the last owner used the trunk as storage locker for spares. It was quite unusual at first, but knowing that he saved many important screws and trim pieces from the interior that proved to be handy later. Jesses explained, “Most of the stuff will get thrown away, but we would rather buy a car from someone who saves everything than from one that throws everything out.”
Every car has a story to tell, and this ’64 Mustang surely has one. Jesse noticed a 22 caliber bullet hole near the right side door of the car, probably from the wilder days of this brute. There were also clear attempts of customization as seen on the rims that were previously installed. With so many things to work on, Jesse and his team decided to tackle first the issues involving the car’s exhaust and clutch. Aesthetic refinement will later follow.
Once all the preliminaries were out of the way, Jesse decided to test the mettle of their ‘new’ found Mustang by having it join the Northwest Classic Rally held in Oregon. Luckily for them, the previous owner already did a pretty decent job of rebuilding the transmission completely since the ’64’s original has no synchromesh and has a bad reputation of being fragile. Couple this with several other repairs on the carburettor, fuel tank, radiator, new heater core, water pump, thermostat and brakes and the Mustang is breathing well once again.
Next to be taken care of is the car’s interior. Jesse is very much aware that having a comfortable one can spell the difference between going through the NW Rally in a breeze, or losing your sanity in the process. “Had we left our old smelly interior alone, we would have already gone insane. The seat cushions were nearly disintegrated to nothing, the vinyl covers were torn, and the carpets were dirty and covered in coffee stains. Worst of the entire car smelled like dirty shoes and vomit, neither of which came out easily,” Jesse quipped.
After nearly 1,000 miles covered in three daunting but definitely fun days, it is quite astonishing that Jesse’s Mustang (with #62 assigned to it) was still kicking, having no breakdown whatsoever at all. “We arrived back at our hotel feeling tired, but very satisfied. We had completed our first rally. It wasn’t anything like the high speed endurance rallies of old, but we still felt a little connection to those heroic men and women who raced on some of the most gruelling events ever held. We were especially proud of our old Mustang. Although ratty in appearance, she performed beautifully and to the astonishment of all the other participants, actually finished without a single breakdown,” Jesse said.
Jesse eventually parted ways with their Mustang, deciding to put it up for auction. It was eventually sold for $4,450 with 23 bids over at eBay. Well bought!