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Thread: Hello and Greetings from Coastal South Carolina

  1. #1
    Member RBachman's Avatar
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    Hello and Greetings from Coastal South Carolina

    Hi, and thanks for the add.

    I'm Richard and live near Myrtle Beach, SC. After much discussion and my DWs' permission to write a check, I decided to build a car. Actually, I decided to build a car when I was a kid, it just took 40 years to get around to it and have the finances to afford it. If it goes well, I'll most likely build another. I've found the second time you do something it's more fun because you avoid what you did wrong last time. LOL.

    About me, I'm a Mechanical Engineer by degree and worked as an industrial heavy equipment mechanic in a steel fabrication plant, and an auto body painters assistant to get through school. Then I played Officer and Gentleman (engineering) for a bit with the USAF and eventually went into corporate practice and project management. I retired early a few years back so the time is there and DW (dear wife) says I need a hobby. I have most of the tools I could imagine needing other than a hoist, buck and chassis dolly.

    As for a place to build, we're currently building a garage for our motorhome and my wonderful bride is letting me add a 30x40 auto garage onto it, 15' ceiling. The garage will also have a 2-post lift (probably a Champion.) I am told it will be complete the first of September. So I'm thinking of ordering the first of August. But I do have some questions.....

    I'll build either a MKIV or the Daytona but I have some nagging questions. Also, being an engineer and prior military officer, I'm rather detail oriented...so thanks in advance for the help and advice I'm sure to ask about. Here are a few of my thoughts prior to buying, and need to make some "ballpark" determinations based on them.

    Which car is more fun to build? To drive? I do want it to be street legal, though.
    Which sells better if I sell to build another?
    What engine? I have an SL (about 500hp) that'll do 4.0 to 60, and I want it to beat that.
    Are there some engines that fit better than others?
    Are some more reliable than others?
    How much is too much HP for these?
    Is there a peak HP I should stop at?
    Do the cars like one engine over another?
    Fuel injected or naturally aspired?
    Are the Blueprint Engine/tranny packages a good deal?
    Are they well matched?
    Is the clutch they use going to hold up with a 500+hp engine?
    Does Blueprint make it easy on the buyer if there's an issue? I've read some concerning comments/reviews regarding customer care and rude treatment, but have no idea how much credence to give those comments.
    What other engine/tranny suppliers should I consider?
    Which car (roadster or coup) has the better fiberglass fit and finish?
    What should paint cost assuming I let them do most of it?
    I've read where it's not unusual to have a body arrive with gelcoat cracks, damage, etc. Is this typical?
    How responsive is FFR? It appears they are nothing but a top notch customer oriented company.

    I keep reading about a 50% discount that was offered by FFR a while back, is this an annual sale? Should I wait to buy until the winter/fall?

    Thanks again!

    I look forward to reading, learning, enjoying and contributing.

    RB

  2. #2
    BadAsp427's Avatar
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    Hello and welcome... I'm just down the road from you in Summerville, SC. I'd be happy to meet up with you some time to discuss this and if you wish, you can check out my MK4... You have asked a ton and I'd be happy to go down each item from my perspective and opinion with you.

    Mk4 20th Anniversary #8690 ( #8 of 20 ) Purchased 8/18/18----Build Started 8/19/18
    Build Thread Click Here
    First Start 11-1-18
    ----First GoCart 11-7-18
    BluePrint Engines 347ci / TKO600
    Carb / Heater / Heated Seats / Cruise Control / Drop Trunk & Battery

    Gel Coat Driver 1/12/19 - 1000 Miles 3-23-19 / 2200 Miles 4-30-19 / 7500 Miles 8/16/19 / 9000 Miles 9/15/19.

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    Senior Member gtaroger's Avatar
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    Welcome to the forum. I had very few problems with my build and great service from FFR.If I were to build another car it would have to be the Daytona coupe .Roger

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    Senior Member SSNK4US's Avatar
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    WOW!!!! First of all welcome to the forum! Second of all thanks for your service. I could never do that so seriously thank you. Iíll try and make this short and just my prospective of what and why I did what I did. Iím an old gear head from the 60ís... Iíve wanted a cobra since I was 5. I donít care if itís 100 times harder to build or easier. Wanted a cobra. Resale is also not a factor for me either. Got my cobra so Iíll probably keep it till I die. If I build something else itís staying put. What would be your passion? Or are you just gonna build and turn it. Oh and third of all Iím really jealous because it sounds like your gonna have a really nice place to build whatever you decide on!!!! My engine... normally aspirated small block. Again gearhead in me. I want choppy idle etc etc of old school. Injection is just one more electrical thing. Same horsepower but yes overall itíll run better. Horsepower???? LOL!!!! Depends who you talk to. Some are good in the 350-450 range. Some will say you can never have enough. Coyote? Nice and turn key and raved about by so many people. I already have a car that shakes the house and rattles the walls when itís first started for thirty seconds and smooths out. Again back to gearhead. Iíve been on the forum for a few years and lurked for longer then that. Iíve never really heard any bad things about blueprint engines or mike fortes stuff as far as engines go. You will also find that FFR is a stellar company and you wonít really see any (legitimate) grips. Research research research.... there is NO right answer for anything... other than your choosing the right company. Your an engineer, read and weigh all the options. Go to lunch with Badasp and your gonna go small block. Go to lunch with Edwardb and your gonna say hands down Coyote....but anyway you look at it your in the right place on this forum (or the other one lol). These are the best guys in the world out here and are willing to do anything to help a fellow builder out. Paint and bodywork costs? Get ahold of one of the two Jeffís and they can clue you in. Not the best place to say Da bat painted mine for $500 and Kleiner does them for $30k ya know? Read lots of builds and just get more confused... Then go with what YOUR gut is telling you. But do it fast because the link at the bottom is one of the best sales youíll see. Even if you pull the trigger today your garage will be done way before your kit is ready. Just my 2Ę

    Kurt

    https://www.factoryfive.com/whats-ne...-Sale-Kick-Off
    Last edited by SSNK4US; 07-10-2019 at 12:20 AM.
    If everything seems under control, youíre just not going fast enough....

    Build thread

    MKIV complete kit # 9395 delivered 7/31/18

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  8. #5
    Senior Member TDSapp's Avatar
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    OK, so take what I say with a grain of salt because I have not built a Roadster or the Daytona. I am currently building the FFR Hot Rod so I am basing my opinion on building the Hot Rod and what I have read on this forum.


    Which car is more fun to build? To drive? I do want it to be street legal, though.

    Both Cars will be fun to build and drive. It really just depends on what you want and how much you are willing to put into it. It's easy to make them street legal, probably even easier to make them NOT street legal. :-)


    Which sells better if I sell to build another?

    I would say that it all depends on what you put into the build and how good your car crowd is in your area.


    What engine? I have an SL (about 500hp) that'll do 4.0 to 60, and I want it to beat that.

    Hard to compare the SL to either the Roadster or the Daytona. With just a quick look the SL is right around 4,000 pounds and the Cobra and Daytona will sit between 2,200 to 2,400 pounds. According to the FFR spec sheet for the Daytona it will do 0-60 in 3.6 seconds. During their testing it was running a mild 345 HP 302 connected to a TKO 5 speed with a 3.27 ratio rear end. That put them pulling 12 seconds at 115 MPH in the quarter mile. So if that is your #1 goal it is not going to take much to meet it.


    Are there some engines that fit better than others?

    FFR made the cars to be able to handle multiple motors. Just depends on what you want to do and how much work you want to put into it.

    Are some more reliable than others?

    In this day and age I would say that if you went with a modern motor from a reputable company that they will be about the same. Check the warranty of the motor trans combo if you are worried.

    How much is too much HP for these?

    Eventually you will end up with more power than you can put to the ground. Again it all depends on what you want to do. You could put in 1,000 HP and then add traction control and launch control and Anti-Lock brakes. The list will never end. Especially if everyone on this site is helping you spend your money. They are really good at that. If you main goal is to beat your SL then 350 HP could be the high end. If you really want to beat it then just up to 450 Hp.

    Is there a peak HP I should stop at?

    Stop when you can no longer handle your car. OK, I say that in jest, but with a catch. Remember building and working on the Cobra and Daytona is not a build it and done. It's a long time journey and most builders will tell you it's never done. Start with the 302 and run it for a while and if you want more do a top end on the motor and change the heads and fuel management. Or start of at 500Hp and then add a blower or turbo.

    Do the cars like one engine over another?

    I will have to leave this for the guys who have built the cars and have had multiple motors in them. I am sure that going from a cast iron block and heads to aluminum block and heads is going to change the weight distribution but I don't know how much of a change it will cause.

    Fuel injected or naturally aspired?

    This again is based on what you want. I went with a carburetor because I wanted it to be a bit old school. I also wanted a rough idle and that is harder to do because with fuel injection it keeps adjusting the fuel ratio. Some guys on here will swear by FI due to the fuel management, the horse power and gas mileage. If I was going to take my Hot Rod on several long trips I might have considered the FI. But considering the longest trip I will probably take is around 200 miles I was not too worried about it.

    Are the Blueprint Engine/tranny packages a good deal?

    Yes they are... I have not heard many complaints at all with Blueprint motors. They also have a 30 month \ 50,000 mile warranty on their motors.

    Are they well matched?

    They have actually designed some packages just for the FFR kits. I would give them a call and talk to them about what you want to do with your car. I have read on here in some of the build threads that the owner called them about a motor and after talking to BP went to a smaller motor (read that as cheaper) because it was a better fit for them. They know the kits very well and know their motors very well.

    Is the clutch they use going to hold up with a 500+hp engine?

    Blueprint has built their reputation on building platforms that provide the power requested with the quality required. I don't think they would build a platform with over 500Hp and not put in the parts to handle it. Again, call and ask them what they put in.

    Does Blueprint make it easy on the buyer if there's an issue? I've read some concerning comments/reviews regarding customer care and rude treatment, but have no idea how much credence to give those comments.

    I am sure that everyone has a bad day, but I have not read much saying they were a problem.

    What other engine/tranny suppliers should I consider?

    Mike Forte - http://fortesparts.com
    Again, give him a call. Not only does he sell motors but he has build some of the FFR kits as well.


    Which car (roadster or coup) has the better fiberglass fit and finish?

    I will have to leave this with the guys that have the cars.

    What should paint cost assuming I let them do most of it?

    Again, that all depends on what you want from your car. Are you looking for a garage queen that you are scared to drive because you don't want to chip the paint, or are you going to drive the crap out of it and chips be dammed. You going to be entering it in local car shows or entering it in national car shows?

    I have seen some guys paint their cars for $5k and loved it... There are also guys out there that will spend $20K on the perfect paint job.


    I've read where it's not unusual to have a body arrive with gelcoat cracks, damage, etc. Is this typical?

    I will have to leave this with the guys that have the cars. My Hot Rod has some cracks in the Gelcoat and the seams need some work, but all in all I have been told they are not the worst out there.

    How responsive is FFR? It appears they are nothing but a top notch customer oriented company.


    You are correct and they are top notch. However, in the Hot Rod world, you will find some complaints about the back ordered of parts upon delivery. Some parts are taking a long time to be delivered and they are some critical parts. (Like springs for the coil overs.) This may not be the same for the Roadster and Daytona as they have been selling them longer and may have the supply chain worked out better. You might want some input from the current builders on how it goes with that.

    -----

    All in all I think that you will not go wrong in building either car. Pick the one you like the best and go for it. The car will become what you make it. Or let your DW (Dear Wife) choose for you . It needs to be something that you are both happy with if you plan on her going with you all the time. She may learn to hate the car if she burns her legs on the side pipes too many times. Myself, I suggest the Hot Rod, your wife would love it.


    Just remember that all of the FFR cars are beast! They are not going to ride, sound like or handle like the Sl. When you are done you will sitting in a wild animal that will jump up and bite you.

    I just got to read this post and think it's a good read for anyone looking to build any of the FFR kits.

    https://thefactoryfiveforum.com/show...r-soon-to-be-s
    Tim Sapp
    11110001101
    Build Blog: http://hotrod.sapp-family.com/blog/

    33 Hot Rod
    Delivered 5/31/2017

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  10. #6
    Senior Member SSNK4US's Avatar
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    More WOW! Best answer ever Tim! Makes me want to just erase mine lol

    Kurt
    If everything seems under control, youíre just not going fast enough....

    Build thread

    MKIV complete kit # 9395 delivered 7/31/18

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  12. #7
    Senior Member TDSapp's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by SSNK4US View Post
    More WOW! Best answer ever Tim! Makes me want to just erase mine lol

    Kurt
    Oh No Kurt... Keep yours up, it has plenty of good stuff in it too. Plus you have built one of the Roadsters so your reply has more weight than mine.


    Tim
    Tim Sapp
    11110001101
    Build Blog: http://hotrod.sapp-family.com/blog/

    33 Hot Rod
    Delivered 5/31/2017

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    Welcome Richard,

    I'm building a Mark IV because I always wanted a Cobra. As others have stated, buy what you are passionate about. If it is not your desire, you may run out of initiative before you finish. I'm about 9 months into my build and halfway through. It should be easier for you since you are retired. I bought my engine from Mike Forte due to great customer service and price (much less than others charge) and I was able to specify everything I wanted. I went with a 351W/427 with EFI and a TKO600. You can put any engine/trans in the car just about, but if you go away from Ford, you are on your own to figure out mounting/installation. I believe there is a $3000 sale right now. I purchased mine with 50% off options, but that sale has not been offered since. There is also a build school in Michigan that enables you to build the car in 3 days. Great opportunity to see the process and talk about options before placing an order. The two Jeffs are great paint options. I'm using Whitby's in North Carolina because they are close and they do great work. If you leave your body in line at their shop, you won't need a body buck. I didn't figure that out until after I built mine. Hope this helps.

    Gary

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  15. #9
    Senior Member TDSapp's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by gkp200 View Post
    You can put any engine/trans in the car just about, but if you go away from Ford, you are on your own to figure out mounting/installation.


    Baahh... If you want to go with Chevy talk to @GoDadGo he will welcome you to the Dark Side. (I have a 350 Chevy going into my Hot Rod.) The Dark Side is good... The Dark Side is good....
    Tim Sapp
    11110001101
    Build Blog: http://hotrod.sapp-family.com/blog/

    33 Hot Rod
    Delivered 5/31/2017

  16. #10
    Senior Member SSNK4US's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TDSapp View Post
    Oh No Kurt... Keep yours up, it has plenty of good stuff in it too. Plus you have built one of the Roadsters so your reply has more weight than mine.


    Tim
    Thanks Tim, BUT... July 31st is the 1 year anniversary delivery date and the body is still on the chassis
    Life throws some serious curves at you sometimes.... but on the plus side I got my new Eastwood powder coat gun today LOL Seems like itís been back ordered since thanksgiving. I also called FFR today to ask where my rear springs might be. Iím literally pulling my hair out wanting to get going on our build!!! And reading where others are in their builds around my delivery date

    Kurt
    If everything seems under control, youíre just not going fast enough....

    Build thread

    MKIV complete kit # 9395 delivered 7/31/18

  17. #11
    Member RBachman's Avatar
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    Thanks for the great welcome and advice. I pulled trigger yesterday on a Cobra for delivery mid-September. I'm going with the IRS and 18" tires and the FFR diff/center section package. After a lot of coin tossing, I ordered the engine from Forte. In the end it was a 50/50 decision, but Mike could do and offer a bit more for a fair amount less. It'll be a 347, EFI, shooting for 450 hp with internals that allow for a safe bump in power should I choose to makes some modifications. All new components, Dart block, Edelbrock Heads and Manifold, and pretty much the only thing "Ford" on it is the bolt pattern. So rather than full bore dark side, I'm going grey. LOL.

    At the moment, my new garage is breaking ground and they should have foundation forming ready for pour mid next week. I am told that completion is first of September. So I'm hoping to have a nice clean new place to build when things arrive. Wish me luck!

    A note about the SL challenge. It's just for bragging rights, that's all. Although, it would be fun to drop that drive train into a Cobra. LOL

    Thanks again!!!

  18. #12
    Member RBachman's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by SSNK4US View Post
    .......I also called FFR today to ask where my rear springs might be. I’m literally pulling my hair out wanting to get going on our build!!! And reading where others are in their builds around my delivery date

    Kurt
    WOW! I hope that doesn't happen with mine. A year for springs isn't just an oversight, it's down right insulting. You must have the patience of a saint.

  19. #13
    BadAsp427's Avatar
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    Richard,
    Great news.. you are going to have a great time building this in your new garage. As you know, I'm just down the road if you need any help, moral support or just want to hang out and share war stories... Between now and delivery, let me know if you want to go for a ride or something... Chat soon!

    Mk4 20th Anniversary #8690 ( #8 of 20 ) Purchased 8/18/18----Build Started 8/19/18
    Build Thread Click Here
    First Start 11-1-18
    ----First GoCart 11-7-18
    BluePrint Engines 347ci / TKO600
    Carb / Heater / Heated Seats / Cruise Control / Drop Trunk & Battery

    Gel Coat Driver 1/12/19 - 1000 Miles 3-23-19 / 2200 Miles 4-30-19 / 7500 Miles 8/16/19 / 9000 Miles 9/15/19.

  20. #14
    Member RBachman's Avatar
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    Will do! I left a voice mail message for you earlier today. You're the first person I told other than my wife. Thanks for all the help earlier!!!

    Quote Originally Posted by BadAsp427 View Post
    Richard,
    Great news.. you are going to have a great time building this in your new garage. As you know, I'm just down the road if you need any help, moral support or just want to hang out and share war stories... Between now and delivery, let me know if you want to go for a ride or something... Chat soon!

  21. #15
    BadAsp427's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by RBachman View Post
    Will do! I left a voice mail message for you earlier today. You're the first person I told other than my wife. Thanks for all the help earlier!!!
    Sorry, I was driving the cobra when you called me and I had not saved your name in the phone yet and then forgot about the call so I just got your message... I'll text you some photos as asked...

    Mk4 20th Anniversary #8690 ( #8 of 20 ) Purchased 8/18/18----Build Started 8/19/18
    Build Thread Click Here
    First Start 11-1-18
    ----First GoCart 11-7-18
    BluePrint Engines 347ci / TKO600
    Carb / Heater / Heated Seats / Cruise Control / Drop Trunk & Battery

    Gel Coat Driver 1/12/19 - 1000 Miles 3-23-19 / 2200 Miles 4-30-19 / 7500 Miles 8/16/19 / 9000 Miles 9/15/19.

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  23. #16
    Senior Member SSNK4US's Avatar
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    Richard, by no means was ANY ill will pointed towards FFR about my springs. I haven’t really touched anything since we did inventory about a year ago. All my back ordered (POL) showed up in a very reasonable amount of time. Along with replacement of damaged or missing parts. They were on top of everything!!! Stellar customer service!!! My rear springs were on the POL originally. I haven’t touched anything so I wasn’t really caring. I got my new powder coater that’s been b/o since like thanksgiving and it reminded me of my springs so I figured I’d call FFR. Looks like they set me an extra set of engine mounts by mistake instead of my springs. So I guess the moral of my story is I wouldn’t worry about FFR and getting your stuff. Sure your gonna have back ordered stuff but my springs are pretty much all my fault for not following up sooner....
    So there it still sits..... (Gonna be 108 today so I probably wouldn’t be working on it anyway lol)

    Kurt

    329CD5E7-2A46-41B0-A042-CF1E8BD7FBFA.jpeg
    If everything seems under control, youíre just not going fast enough....

    Build thread

    MKIV complete kit # 9395 delivered 7/31/18

  24. #17
    Member RBachman's Avatar
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    Glad to hear this. I was almost worried for a moment, but figured something like that happened. LOL.

    I have to say that FFR made it easy to order. Very informative, provided honest opinions, good advice, and added confidence to my decision. Very reassuring.

    Quote Originally Posted by SSNK4US View Post
    Richard, by no means was ANY ill will pointed towards FFR about my springs. I havenít really touched anything since we did inventory about a year ago. All my back ordered (POL) showed up in a very reasonable amount of time. Along with replacement of damaged or missing parts. They were on top of everything!!! Stellar customer service!!! My rear springs were on the POL originally. I havenít touched anything so I wasnít really caring. I got my new powder coater thatís been b/o since like thanksgiving and it reminded me of my springs so I figured Iíd call FFR. Looks like they set me an extra set of engine mounts by mistake instead of my springs. So I guess the moral of my story is I wouldnít worry about FFR and getting your stuff. Sure your gonna have back ordered stuff but my springs are pretty much all my fault for not following up sooner....
    So there it still sits..... (Gonna be 108 today so I probably wouldnít be working on it anyway lol)

    Kurt

    329CD5E7-2A46-41B0-A042-CF1E8BD7FBFA.jpeg

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    Congrats on the order. Mine arrived last September and I'm about 1/2 done.

    Mike's price was excellent. Consider his engine mount modifications (the stack mounts need to be modified due to the extra webs on the Dart block). Mike cuts the mounts and then welds more support to provide clearance while also maintaining strength. He also has a hydraulic clutch kit and mechanical throttle linkage that are nice options.

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  27. #19
    Member RBachman's Avatar
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    Will do! Thanks for the advice!

    Quote Originally Posted by gkp200 View Post
    Congrats on the order. Mine arrived last September and I'm about 1/2 done.

    Mike's price was excellent. Consider his engine mount modifications (the stack mounts need to be modified due to the extra webs on the Dart block). Mike cuts the mounts and then welds more support to provide clearance while also maintaining strength. He also has a hydraulic clutch kit and mechanical throttle linkage that are nice options.

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