The rusty hulk, or what was left of it, was delivered to Car Concepts and the real work was about to begin. With any complex car build, final success is heavily dependent upon the planning and forethought that is done prior to ever hanging the first body panel and this project was no different. We spent countless hours pouring through project photos and build books from other notable projects before arriving at an overall theme for the car. When working from a clean sheet of paper as we were with this build, it is all too easy to simply assemble a bunch of non-related parts when, in reality, the goal is to make sure that everything works together, and supports the overall theme which, in our case, was simplicity and elegance. With an overall concept in mind, we were off to the races!
Scott Brideau believes that one of the drivers for making a custom car build successful or not is proper definition of ride height, wheel size and design, and supension system requirements. Rather than waiting until the end of the project and making them an after thought, we started with the wheel definition and design. We worked with Boze Alloys to come up with a custom design that would define Isadora from the ground up. Basic sketches and, finally, a set of CAD drawings were produced to arrive at the final design. We settled in on a set of wheels that, when combined with a moderately low profile tire, would give Isadora an elegant yet powerful look and, importantly, still provide a nice smooth driving experience.
The design ended up as a convex 5-spoke wheel, 18×10 with a 4.5″ backspace for the rear and a 17×8 with a 5″ backspace for the front. The tires we selected are BF Goodrich G-Force Sports; 275/40R18 in the rear and 235/45R17 in the front. Now that we had the shoes it was time to define what would go in them.
Since we had previously determined that we wanted to go with a chassis design we started the process for identifying our supplier. There are a number of custom chassis suppliers so we did some basic research to determine which best suited our needs. Art Morrison has been fabricating chassis desiogns for many years and, among other products, they offer a chassis that is suitable for unibody construction including the Mustang. With the wheel and tire selection behind us, Scott set out to specify the chassis ride height and suspension configuration. We selected a chassis with coil-over independent front suspension, triangular 4-Bar rear suspension, Detroit Speed and Engineering power rack and pinion steering, Ford 9″ rear end with 31-spline axles, and Wilwood 12″ brakes all around. Scott worked closely with the Art Morrison crew to get the dimensions exactly right including designing the specific placement and alignment as well as rotation of the chassis internal rails to result in cockpit dimensions and floor height nearly identical to a stock ’67 Mustang and still provide room for the modular engine (which is physically much larger than the original stock 289), exhaust, and transmission.
With the chassis on site and assembled it was then time to go shopping for a motor.