Jaded- The Story of Kevin Tetz’s ’66 Mustang Project

Jaded…… yes I am, and so is the name of my car. It’s a 1966 Mustang Coupe 6 cylinder, three speed trans, 4 lug turd that was rescued from the tin-worms to be the mule for many technical articles for car magazines over the years since 2003.

It’s got one of the very first complete one piece floorpans ever to be installed into an early mustang… as well as tons of other modifications and tweaks, at first mostly centered around rust repair…

At first it was the recipient of an “Eleanor E-2 Kit from Mustang Depot, which featured a cool fiberglass treatment on every corner, including wheel flares…

Once I had driven a friends 2004 Cobra there was no turning back, I HAD to have that kind of power, but in a classic Mustang skin… Personally I really like the Coupe styling, but I had considered doing the Fastback Conversion… I decided to put that 40 hours of work into custom and practical mods instead. All of the rear (heavy) shock reinforcements that normally live overtop of the axel are now gone…. And the wheel wells are tubbed to accept stupid-wide rubber.

Since the nose is now removable ( unlike the unibody car, where the frame is the body) I fabricated lightweight aprons that are symmetrical and nicer than the stamped parts that came from Ford. The full frame chassis now considerably beefs up the integrity of the once flimsy unibody.

So now that all the mock up and designing and fabricating is nearly done, we’re deep into surface prep, and happy to try out Eastwood’s new line of fillers, primers, and eventually paint. We started out with a media blasted body, ( aluminum oxide to remove pitted rust in the only original exterior panel… the roof.) and coated it with Eastwood Epoxy primer to eliminate the possibility of flash surface rust, and set up the metal for fillers and primers.

Brian Finch ( Hot Rod Transformations) has been working the rough spots out of the bodywork, and doing a fantastic job of it! Carefully gapping the doors and fitting panels is only part of what he’s been doing; Im using the Hydroboost braking system from the 2004 Donor Cobra, and it’s a tight fit between the cam covers and the hood hinges…. Brian built a ’67 Coupe with the same engine combo a couple of years ago, and created a solution to that problem by clocking the pressure reservoir to make it fit…. Structural bracing is also one of Brian’s specialties, as he’s responsible for some of the baddest Pro-Touring Musclecars around… and there is now internal bracing in the cowl area that will link to the frame rails and replace ( as well as enhance) any lost stiffness and integrity caused by carving up a uni-body car.

Brian knows, as do most of us, that prep work is the key to any successful paintjob, after fillers ( Eastwood Contour premium filler) were applied and blocked, we went to super-high build Polyester surfacer.

The light color makes it easy to guide coat and block, and the composition of poly-filler means that it does NOT shrink back… EVER! So it can be used as the last stage of your bodywork…. Final spray-filler.

Once the panels are guide coated and blocked to 220 grit, I’ll go back with (Eastwood) 2K urethane filler for final sanding with 600 grit and then… finally!!!!! We’ll get it into the booth to shoot the custom two tone paint scheme that REEKS of classic Musclecar mixed with modern pro-touring influences. I worked with Eastwood’s John Robinson ( JR) on the color… it’s a throwback deep (Jade) green with modern micas and pearls to give it depth that mid 60’s cars just didn’t have. The color will be included in the new Eastwood color library, so if you like it on the car, you can use it for your own! The fact that Eastwood also has a flat clear gives me the option to coat the chassis, engine compartment, and hood stripes with “Tunnel Ram” grey base coat and semi gloss clear for extra detail and a cool two tone. The same color is used on the chassis and suspension details…. Combined with the flat clear we’re getting a very nice high quality and contemporary appearance.

Performance was never in question with a 600 Horsepower Supercharged 4.6, race car suspension and steering, 14 inch 6 piston brakes on all four corners, adjustable coil over shocks, and Nascar style splined sway bars front and rear… but I wanted the looks and “feel” of the car, as well as the fit and finish to match the performance…. I’m thinking that with the help of Eastwood’s new line of coatings this will all fall right into place!!! Wish me luck! Come and help! Visit us at SEMA where the car will debut…. If you can’t make SEMA…. There’ll be more pictures to follow as I continue to make progress…. Check for more video at Eastwood.com as well…. Maybe a “loss of traction” shot? Grin!

KT out….


  1. Hello,

    im a big fan of what you did with this stang. i just recently purchased a 66 coupe i6 and looking for ways to give it the “modern features” for driving it… I’m thinking all down the line projects, and want to go with the new coyote 5.0. i know ill need to build the suspension and chassis around that, which leads me to my question of what chassis that is you used. the way your car sits is definitely the way id like mine to sit. and I’m sure this handles like a dream even with the pedal to the floor.

  2. Hey dude, if you don’t like the Mustang, get a Chevelle, or Camaro, those are real “TURDS”.

  3. Question: what radiator support did you use for the Jade project? Is it easily adapted to a 65 mustang convertible with a SBF 427 fitted with Billet Specialities serpentine single belt system?

  4. Dr. Fisker, The radiator support is basically a 1968 Radiator support in the early car. The radiator opening is larger, but the hood profile is the same, so it fits the contour of the new hood. Issues = Finding a latch mechanism with safety… you’ll have to get creative. Making the support fit everywhere else will cost some time and you’ll have to either graft the support into the existing early car, or drill spotwelds, and totally remove and install the “new” one. I also boxed in the support on either side. This is done with 20 Ga. sheet metal, and tool alot of time, mostly due to the custom nature of the application, mod motor, different suspension and chassis, etc… You can make it work, it just takes a little whittlinng. 🙂

  5. Kevin, Thank you for the quick and awesome reply. I had the honor of meeting you this past Sunday in Chicago at the Eastwood Alsip store, we chatted briefly about the chassis on your Mustang. I purchased the 68 support and completely understand the challenge of this mod. Question: did you fill in the unnecessary openings on the support you installed? I too am looking to create a very clean look and plan to fill all holes and openings. You mentioned a paint product you used to paint the wheel wells on your Mustang, I failed to make a note of your reply! Can you share again the product, and can it be tinted to match the outside color of the vehicle? Any suggestion on filling large holes in the core support that cannot just be simply filled by a mig? Do you have a email you can share so I can send you a few pics?
    Thank you in advance,
    Dr. Fisker

  6. Hi Kevin, the best coupe ever! I have a 65 and have run the gament with ideas, and one thing I know is I would like not have the window trim, but just have only the black seal. What seal would I be able to do this with, or is there much metal fab needed to acheive this? Thanks for all of the great information and killer coupe!

  7. Kevin – I love this car so much that decided on using the same paint scheme for my 1956 Ford F500. But being a novice painter my first attempt at painting the hood has failed so many times that I’ve just finished my first gallon on JUST the hood. Each time, if I don’t achieve a perfect gloss, it seems I try to go back over that area (too late) to add another glossy layer. I then get solvent pop after 24 hours. I guess I should just leave those duller areas for my detailer and be happy huh? Live and learn I guess.

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