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Mine looked like that too when I dropped the headliner to run the wires for the electronic mirror a few years back. That cork stuff just doesn't stick.

Do you notice a major difference in the tone/volume/reverb when you tap the roof with the new matting installed?
 

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Discussion Starter #64
Thanks guys! Well, Joe, you know how to take it apart, now all you've got to do is buy the material.

Mine looked like that too when I dropped the headliner to run the wires for the electronic mirror a few years back. That cork stuff just doesn't stick.

Do you notice a major difference in the tone/volume/reverb when you tap the roof with the new matting installed?
Huge difference Brandon. The roof is solid. Absolutely no more reverb when the roof is tapped. I won't be able to really comment on the interior sound difference until I take it for a drive. I really wish that I had the means to take before and after sound measurements. One test that I saw on YT the guy measured a 3 dB drop in sound which is a 50% reduction! If you know anything about sound, the sound pressure level doubles every 6 dB. PERCEIVED (psycho acoustic) sound level doubles every 10 dB. So, in his case it was 33% reduction in perceived sound. I'd be very happy with that. I'd imagine that I've gotten an even better reduction in noise than he did in his car.

If any of you are interested I found a good explanation of the differences in sound levels here.

I can't wait to put the car back together and take it for a drive. Shutting the doors now have a definitive THUD. The whole car sounds much more solid. I've yet to put any sound treatment on the trunk lid, although I know it needs some too. I don't want to mess up the nice paint job that Chung did! I'll see if I can tuck some sound treatment away between the sheet metal layers.

Provided I'm happy with the RCA cables that I have (I'm scrounging up what RCA cables I have laying around the garage from previous stereo builds plus one that was included in the amp install kit that I ordered), today I'm going to install the radio. I won't be getting any sound out of it though, as I still have to wire the amps and speakers.
 

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Looks awesome, Ron!!

I think "Beautimus!" is more accurate, lol.
(My sound man buddy's, favorite word about good audio, lol.)

I do want to say, you will want to go ahead and have the headliner recovered while it's loose; it's 25ish years old, and will go soon.

Look at any other foam parts in the car; it's all going back to its maker about now, garage pet or not.

If you have a truck, I'd take it out of the car, put it directly in the back of the truck, (cover it, of course,) and take it to an upholstery shop; then you can complain if it gets broken in half.
:D

"Joann's fabrics" is a great source, online places' quality varies a lot.

You can use video cables for the audio; Audio isn't impedance matched, it's called Hi-Z or high impedance.
Audio sources have ~10k ohms output impedance, and inputs are supposed to be below 50k, and above 25k.

(High power equipment wants to see them same load impedance as the output impedance, or video signals.
2 ohm wants 2 ohm speakers, and 50 or 75 ohm video wants theirs respective sames, lol.)
I bought something similar to these from monster cable awhile back:

 
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Thanks so much Greg. It's already reinstalled. The headliner is in remarkable shape for it's age. I've been very fortunate with it. When it does eventually fail I'll be sure to get it recovered. I now know how to remove it.

Today I spent routing all the RCA cables, soldering the wiring harness, trimming the console mounting bracket to fit all the RCA cables, installing the radio and reassembling the dash. It doesn't sound like much but wow did all that work eat up the time! Alas, I lost a 7mm socket to the Dash gods tonight. I caught it on the edge of the dash trim while reinstalling the instrument cluster and it dropped into the dash never to be found. Believe me, I looked!

The stereo glows and looks pretty but it's not making a sound yet as I still have to install all the amps and make all the speaker connections. One thing at a time.

Today - From This:

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To this: I haven't run set up yet but after thirty seconds of showing this it switches over to demo mode and wow is that display beautiful! The colors are amazing. I can't wait to hear how it sounds.

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1997 Thunderbird 4.6, 1998 Mark VIII LSC
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Looking good, but I bet it'll sound better. (y)

All your dash/cluster plastics survive the R&R?

This is all reminding me why I am NOT looking forward to transplanting all the T-bird's mods into a different chassis... :eek:
 

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Discussion Starter #68
Thanks Brandon! So true! It's a LOT of work!

No, my pristine instrument cluster surround got a small crack at the base just above the steering column. I tried patching it with Bondic LED UV plastic weld but it didn't hold. Fortunately it's small and barely noticeable. I cringe every time I have to remove that piece. Everything else is durable and, for the most part, replaceable. But I know how those instrument cluster surrounds in good shape are Unobtainium.
 

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We need to get someone to 3d print some; anyone got a 3d scanner, or access to one?
 
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We need to get someone to 3d print some; anyone got a 3d scanner, or access to one?
I have a few friends; how big a bed will the scanner need? (I don't think their scanners are big enough, but it'd help to know.)

Their scanners won't fit the upper cowl covers for a 89-92, alas ...

RwP
 

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Discussion Starter #72
Great Idea about printing these. Didn't know that was possible. Would need a really big printer to do it!

Today?! Wow, what a day!
  • Wired the rear speakers
  • Cut the rear deck trim for a speaker grill on the drivers side (Opposite of the factory perforation) - more on that later
  • Lightly sound treated the trunk lid
  • Reinstalled the rear deck trim and 3rd brake light
  • Reinstalled the right and left rear sail panels including: seat-belts, and speakers
  • Reinstalled the SC L-Braces and the LX V-Brace (Yes, I'm using both in my car)
  • Reinstalled the Trunk Carpet
  • Found a grounding point and put the wire together to run from the grounding point to the splitter (I'm running 4GA to a splitter and 8GA wire off of that to the amps - Same for the power)
  • Cleaned the dust off of my old amps that have been sitting on a shelf in the garage for the past 25 or so years. I haven't had these amps in a car since before I bought the Tbird! All the way back in 1994!
Took the car for a drive tonight (my boy insisted) Wow, what a difference! I never realized how noisy the car was until I dampened all the extraneous sounds. Didn't play the radio yet, I still haven't connected the amps. Just took a quick loop around the area to check things out.


Ok, on the nitty gritty details. Joe asked for some additional pictures of the sound treatments.

Here's the underside of the rear deck. I used scraps here and pieced the jigsaw puzzle together because it's an area that won't be seen.

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Passenger's side wheel well and Gas intake tube. I didn't quite finish this corner because I was conserving materials for the roof.

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The Driver's side rear quarter panel. i used two sheets here and covered from the upper to the lower detail line (that little ridge in the sheet metal) I believe it was 16" between the two lines. I also sound treated the back side of the inteior unibody sheet metal.

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Two srtrips up the inside of the C pillar (both sides). I was able to work it in between the holes and then adhere it to the exterior sheet metal.

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Passenger's side rear quarter

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This is inside the rear quarters Sound treatment on the OD, Sound treatment on the backside of the ID and I ran a 4" wide strip over the top of the rear wheel wells in this location. (Both sides). I did it in three pieces to make application easier. I don't remember the exact lengths I want to say 12" to 14" long x 2 pieces and at the very top like 5" or 6" long.

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So how much of the damping material did you get? Looks like it was just enough.
 

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Ron, if those amps haven't been powered in 25 years, do it slow.

The capacitors tend to lose the polarization that makes them capacitors. :)

Power them up for 10 seconds, then off, then on, several times, leaving them on longer each time.

Then leave them on for an hour of so, with no sound, just to condition the caps.

I deal with old equipment a lot, so it's a real thing; nothing like connecting an amp, and it pops all the caps when you put the big fuse in.
Car batteries have no Mercy, lol.
 
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Centered up the logo and put it in the corners of the trunk lid.
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Discussion Starter #78 (Edited)
Now, here's what I did with the rear deck. I was looking for a speaker grill to open up the drivers side port. There's a factory port to the trunk that's perferated on the passenger's side that we've discussed previously, but there's also a hole in the rear deck in about the same place on the drivers side that I want to open up. Since I wanted a grill that both matched the interior color and Ford speaker grill style, I bought an extra set of rear speaker grill covers and used one of those to do the job. I'm no upholsterer but I can watch YT videos all day long! LOL

Here's what I did. It turned out great and I'm really happy with the look. It sits flush with the rear deck carpet and looks factory.

The black sharpie is the outline of the sheet metal hole, the silver sharpie is the outline of the speaker grill.

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I extracted the grill from the rear speaker cover.

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And proceeded to counter sink it into the rear deck cover.

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I was very, very happy with the end result.

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Discussion Starter #80
So how much of the damping material did you get? Looks like it was just enough.
I bought the Soundskins PRO Plus roll, it's about 65 sq ft. It was just barely enough, I have a 2' by 3' piece and some scraps left. That's it.


Ron, if those amps haven't been powered in 25 years, do it slow.

The capacitors tend to lose the polarization that makes them capacitors. :)

Power them up for 10 seconds, then off, then on, several times, leaving them on longer each time.

Then leave them on for an hour of so, with no sound, just to condition the caps.

I deal with old equipment a lot, so it's a real thing; nothing like connecting an amp, and it pops all the caps when you put the big fuse in.
Car batteries have no Mercy, lol.
Thanks for the tip! I'd have ruined them for sure. How do I cycle them like that in the car?
 
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