Home > General Automotive Topics > Members Restorations > 1965 Dart GT 273 Commando 4 speed

1965 Dart GT 273 Commando 4 speed

  1. Found this cool project car in North Carolina. Original commando car that has been seriously modified during previous owners start of a build he could not finish due to a divorce.
    Engine ,trans and rear are fresh but she needs everything else gone thru.
    Currently has a beyond commando spec. 273, fenderwell headers, a833 with Lakewood bell housing and
    Mcleod clutch and 8 3/4 rear with 3.23 sure grip.
    Leaving driveline alone and focusing on wiring, brakes, suspension, wheels/tires and interior/body.
    Excited as at 55 this will probably be my last build and first Dart
    Started with sorting thru everything last week then cleaned and dyed rear seats and treated rear floor pans with por-15 this week. Wohoo.







  2. Some pics from work this week.






  3. Nice project car! It's a 65 though.
  4. Ops. Damn typo.
  5. I can fix the title.
  6. Please if ya could.
    Tried to edit and could not access title of thread
    Thanks so much.
  7. Done!
  8. Thank you sir.
    Still enjoying the calendar with the lovely ladies you sent me with car cover I bought from ya by the way.lol.
  9. The gift that keeps on giving. lol
  10. Nice.
  11. That seat looks like brand new!!! Great job, I hope everything g cleans up that well!!
  12. You can't get a better project than a 65 Dart! Lol she should be a runner with that drivetrain have fun!
  13. Thanks. Trying to salvage everything I can to keep a true budget build.
    They were all filthy but only fubared seat is drivers front. Incredible what some apple cider and tlc can do.
  14. Thanks.
    Definitely gonna leave her 273 powered.
    Current engine was built with bottom end close to original specs. with modified block to accept bigger valve heads ,lunati voodoo cam, original 65 heads modified with 1.87/1.50 valves, serious porting and lunati valve springs and an old school offy intake manifold.
    They were going to run a Holley on her but when I ran numbers it is an original date coded 585 cfm one from a 66 427/390 horse corvette. That baby is goin on eBay and will run an edelbrock.
  15. Cider for you, elbow grease for the seats!! Good recipe!!!
  16. Meant apple vinegar for the seats,incredible what that stuff can clean.
    But yes some modified cider and elbow grease helps with cleaning process no doubt. lol.
  17. Nasty rainy day here and will not take her from my carport to my garage until she is running so here we go. My first parts order of what i'm sure will be many more to come. lol

  18. Man, great project! its screaming for a straight axle!! best of luck on it.
  19. I know. She really is.
    Maybe down the road.
  20. Dove into first parts bin today to start an inventory on interior and body stuff i got with her that is decent and what she will need.
    Made my day when original 4 speed carpet scuff plate was in bin.

  21. Trying to get a lot done on her before cold front hits us Sat.
    Today treated front floor boards with por-15, adjusted and lubed door glass and rear quarter glass regulators(all work great now) and went thru and organized last parts bin. Ordered new gas tank and sending unit. Funest part though was putting new line lock button & 4 speed hurst knob on shifter.lol.



  22. :popcorn:
  23. Today was productive. She is getting close to being ready to fire up.
    Installed Percy's header gaskets, new header bolts and adjusted and secured headers. Checked valve adjustment, added eddy carb and spacer plus Holley mechanical fuel pump.
    Hopefully after new fuel tank, fuel line plumbing and bulkhead forward wiring harness I can get her fired up and in garage for winter.

  24. Awesome!! Just awesome!!!
  25. Wow you are just buzzing along. She is coming together fast.
  26. Thanks so much.
    Cold front got me yesterday as we went from high temps of almost 70 to low 40s today.
    Everything to get her fired up is on the way but gonna be cold till turkey day here at least. Had a great weekend on eBay though selling the original big block vette Holley carb that was on her and original 273 4bbl intake manifold for a tidy sum.
  27. Weather still sucks here. Got down to 18 degrees this morning.
    Thought I was in the south lol.
    Anyways ,have made no progress since sat. but this arrived today. Shutting down to enjoy thanksgiving but supposed to warm up Friday into next week so screw Black Friday. I'm puttin in a fuel tank.lol.

  28. Had good day yesterday as it warmed up nicely.
    Got old Master cylinder removed and trying to figure out dual mc that will fit with these headers.
    Restored air cleaner with eastwoods reflective paint and new decals.



  29. Waiting on fuel sending unit so tackled the bulkhead forward under hood wiring this morning. Removed old nasty harness and replaced with brand new factory correct harness and new voltage regulator.
    Still have to replace starter relay and horn relay along with alternator then wire in msd box but happy with this as a start.
    Beerthirty has hit. Wohoo.






  30. Where did you get the harness ?
  31. Classic Industries.
  32. Thanks it looks great
  33. Damn that is nice. Great progress!
    So vinegar to clean those seats?
    They look new now.
  34. That looks really fantastic!
  35. Thanks.
    Used 1 part bleach to 8 parts water( more bleach could damage threads of seats) to get rid of any mold/mildew then apple vinegar and lots of scrubbing.
    Luckily the rear seat and passenger front bucket were just filthy with no other damage. Passenger bucket should clean up nice also but drivers is fubared.
    Still deciding if I want to re-upholster front buckets in future( have done 4 over the years) and early a buckets are a pita to re-cover correctly and don't wanna pay shop. Might end up going with pro car low back buckets.
    To start thou just gonna throw cover on drivers side and get her in the wind.
  36. Have not made progress this week Dealing with helping sister with some plumbing issues at her house.
    Know it will not be popular but i'm old and this is a nostalgia build, space is tight with headers and was way she was raced back in day.
    For brakes going with original style single master cylinder and line lock.
    True widow maker but i'm already a widower so hell with it.

  37. Awesome project!
  38. Thanks.
    Helping family and weather here have slowed me up. Still hoping to have her running and in garage by end of yr.
    Spare bedroom has turned into 65 dart parts holding area.lol.

  39. Good day today. Sun came out, my stainless fuel lines and sending unit finally arrived, treated carb with RPM ( good stuff for keeping moisture off any metal) removed old throttle cable and replaced with lokar unit. Just need to repaint firewall attaching plate and add stainless securing nuts to finish.
    My car budget is shot till after Christmas so cracked first beer, started fire in fireplace and am watching Pearl Harbor marathon on history channel.lol.




  40. Had a good morning before weather turned.
    Got line loc solenoid mounted and plumed line to tee on frame and bent first sections of line to master cylinder and rear brakes.
    Bonus was my anniversary gold paint showing up on porch. Wohoo.


  41. Cold today but removed full size starter. ( what a pita to get off ) and installed new mini starter but still need to get relay wiring and battery cable cut to length.
    Nice weight savings and so much easier to access over full size monster.


  42. Looks like you are missing a rear valve cover bolt.
  43. How did I miss this? Nice score...and what a fast start on getting her going!!! Congrats!
  44. Just have em secured with 2 bolts each for now. They need to be restored and still need easy access to valvetrain.
  45. And she came from South Carolina.lol.
    TMC has a new president by the way. Rick Hart.
  46. My brother lives in Columbia SC. About 5 years ago looked at a 66 Barracuda Commando 4 spd in Elgin, SC but it was rough and the seller wouldn't budge on price.

    Wow, Butch turned over reign!! Rick will do a great job, I'm sure. That is one great Mopar club!! Very active.
  47. Got back on her today. Flu bug got me last week and was not feeling getting under her to remove old gas tank and run fuel lines so spruced up dash bezel.
    Did not go full resto as will eventually replace with repop so just cleaned up nicely, replaced missing bulbs, touched up black trim areas and polished light controls, cigarette lighter and ignition bezels.




  48. Warmed up today so pulled passenger side bucket and started resto on it.
    Got vinyl cleaned and re-dyed, cleaned and repainted tracks and started polish process on chrome side pieces( left is before rt. is after in picture )
    Hopefully will finish tomorrow along with restoring other dash pieces.







  49. Nice work. What was your process on the chrome? It looks great.
  50. Fine, then very fine steel wool then star-brite polish. For marine applications but works great polishing and sealing chrome. Good stuff.
  51. X2--chrome does look great! I'm guessing there was a fair bit of effort in those.
  52. It is tedious but worth it. Not to bad, about 30min. on a chrome piece size of seat sides.
    Trying to salvage everything I can to keep costs down.
  53. Another lovely 20 degree temperature drop today so did some work inside garage and house today on dash trim pieces. Cleaned, repainted and detailed the ash tray and remaining dash inserts.Had to put on my 2.5 X reading glasses to highlight words on heater control piece.lol
    Happy with way they turned out.


  54. Made some nice progress today. Got some dash pieces installed, cleaned polished and detailed both headlight bezels and installed headlights and bezels. Looks like a dart finally.:)
    Finally got under her and removed old fuel tank and sending unit.
    Hopefully weather will hold and can get new tank installed tomorrow.





  55. Good progress on your car!
  56. Thanks Ulf.
    Has been a fun project so far.
    Slowed up due to weather and holiday season.
    Inside today researching possible wheel tire combos for her and how I can run the fenderwell headers into a hi-po single exhaust.
  57. Does it clear the rubber boot that goes on the steering column pipe?
  58. Clear of everything nicely when installed.
    Installed mine from under car and does not look like it will clear steering Column to remove or install from top.
  59. Finally warmed up and had some good snow melt so did a little to her today after a week of cabin fever.
    Replaced shock mounts and put on new rear KYB shocks and also replaced differential vent.
    Not much but was good to get out and work on her after a week of nothingness.

  60. Finally got fuel tank in today. Wohoo.:lol:
    That much closer to getting her running.



  61. Finally got back on her today after ignoring her to work on my 64 cuda for a month.
    Re-did the front brakes and added new 14" torq thrust wheels. Now i need to just find steelie's with right offset for the back to get oldschool look i'm going for.

  62. Looking good!
  63. Thanks.
    Not a mopar but this is look I'm shooting for with wheels.

  64. Finally. I have an interior and complete dash except for radio. Concours restoration absolutely not. Oldschool hot rod look and functional yes. lol.



  65. She's almost alive. :thumbsup:
    Got wiring sorted out and engine ready to go. Just need to wire electric fan and finish plumbing fuel line.
    Hopefully will have her fired up by Friday. Then on to brakes and exhaust.



  66. The beast is alive. :thumbsup:Fired her up today and broke in camshaft. Still need to shore up fuel system and get timing right.
    She sounds very,very nasty and has great oil pressure. Will try and post video in next few days.

    Learned a tough lesson. Do not get close to those headers after she has run.lol.

  67. As promised:thumbsup:
  68. SOLD.
    Thanks YouTube. Was not for sale but then again in my world for right price ( which happened) anything is for sale.
  69. WOW! You never know who's watching!!
  70. Couldn't help myself.
    Just bought her back in deal with friend that bought her from me.
    She now is road worthy with new brakes & dual MC. B body rear was removed and now has original a body 8.3/4 with 4.10 gears, new leaf springs, new driveshaft and fresh alignment.
    She jumps off the line like a damn snapping turtle.
    Pics to follow when delivered Thursday .Wohoo.:thumbsup:
  71. So sold it for 3 months? Congrats getting it back! Sounds awesome.
  72. Yea. My 64 is finished and missd having a hot rod project to work on.
    Love driving them but my true love is wrenching on em. Weird.lol
  73. Cool, ya know what they say, if you love something lol. You obviously have skills and vision, great work.
  74. :thumbsup:Just got dropped off. Here we go again.Wohoo.








  75. She now has chrome air cleaner with charger sticker thanks to badlilred 79. Wohoo:thumbsup:
    Great day today.
    Routed line lock wiring, hooked up tach today and got her legal with title, tags and registration in my name.



  76. Added passenger side mirror, cleaned polished and installed original wiper blades plus door locks, added new window felts on doors and installed rte voltage limiter for qauges( thanks slantsixdan)
    Trying to decide what route I'm gonna go for front bucket seats.
    Not goin to pay 5 bills for legendary covers on this build.



  77. Decided on my front buckets. Low backs from a CJ5 jeep. Found pair in white vinyl for $100.
    Got my antenna hole filler today.
    Ratfink will look good in place of antenna on this build. :thumbsup:


  78. Rat Fink installed.

  79. Mocked up my 15" x 7" steelies for rear today. Will be tight. Looks like im gonna have to stay with a cheater slick or drag radial under 27 "s tall and with total width under 9"s.
    Any suggestions let me know. Thanks.


  80. I run a 225/70-15 on mine on 7" wide wheels. 9.1 wide and 27.36 dia. 001b.JPG
  81. Thanks Mike. How is clearance for you?
  82. A little snug but no rub. 014 (2).JPG
  83. I think a 15x8 would work but the backspace and tire would have to be perfect.
  84. Thinking about these Phoenix units and having cheater grooves added.

  85. Those look like fun. Just don't get caught in the rain.
  86. Scored a nice front bumper core for her today. This is a 64 not a 65 bumper but will look cool I think. Already gave it the fake fiberglass look.lol
    Converted running lights under bumper on front valance to work as turn signals.


  87. Got front bumper mocked up & trial fitted, fabricated bumper brackets and scored a pair of a100 seats to recover and maybe use.:thumbsup:


  88. Got lucky with this one. All the trim and bezels are in great shape.
  89. The 64 front bumper is on and looks better than I thought it would on a 65.

    Hopefully rear tires for my steelies will arrive this week, then on to front seats.
    Took her for short jaunt today and with the 4.10's she is a neck snapping little beast.


  90. Got my 15" steelies with 225-70-15's on today. Looks great with torq thrusts on front.
    Thanks toolmanmike for tire size info.

  91. Will hopefully have interior functional this week. Decided to go with a100 seats I picked up from rocky65 for front buckets. They are being recovered and should be ready Wednesday. Will still have to make up some mounting frames.
    Mulled over rear seat delete but decided to keep rear seat for now.
    Changing to black so got rear seat dyed and in place today along with fabbing up a package tray. Left the gt center pieces white to add a little contrast.
    Plan on eventually fabbing up my own door panels.




  92. Have my a100 seats ready to go. Pleased with way they turned out.
    Now to fabricate some brackets.
    Got interior ready to put em in with coating of truck bedliner on floorboards for my temporary carpet.:lol:





  93. Waiting for seat brackets to arrive so worked on some detail stuff.
    Spruced up emblems, finished wiring line lock, improved old body work on rear wheel lip & trunk lid bottom and started restoring interior roof line and door panel trim.








  94. Got drivers side a100 seat in. :thumbsup:




  95. Passenger seat is in. Glad I went with the a100 seats over the jeep seats. They are actually quite comfortable and give her a cool mini super stock look:lol:

    Installing seatbelts tomorrow then figure out what to use for fabricating some door panels.


  96. Fabricated and installed my first door panel today. Used 3/8 " framing board.



  97. Wow that looks great.
  98. Thanks.
    Was going to go plain as she is just a hot rod then thought what the heck I'll add the chrome pieces from the fubared originals.
    Look much better than expected and only cost $10 for enough board to do the fronts & rears.
  99. Got drivers side door panel and one rear panel fabbed up and installed today before beerthirty hit.