What did you do to your Tbird today?

Thanks for input. I haven't given up on trying to keep the Thunderbird logo center cap yet, I'm in no hurry. The TSW Silverstones are a plan B. I found out those smoothie wheels are a grand each. That's out of the question. I was also shocked to see those factory mags going for 500 dollars each on some sites. The Silverstones are only 220 each. Besides not liking the design of the factory mag, inside the wheel cylinder(?) I can see the chrome bubbling and peeling. Refinishing the factory mags (powder coat) is 200 dollars each.

I may put the wheels project on hold till next summer and focus elsewhere. I've checked the brushed aluminum trim dash kit. Looks good in photo, but I was wondering if anyone here installed this dash kit. Any buyer's remorse or were you satisfied with the look?

 

Mach5

2004 Merlot
I have the faux wood interior kit on my 2004, which I prefer because it dulls down the shiny. I drive with my top down probably 7-8 months a year so I prefer to not have too much reflecting or shining back at me. (Just an aside, I never wear a red shirt - sunlight reflects on the gauges and makes me think a warning light is on - arrgh.)
(I like the black wheels. Before you pull the trigger I would read up on all the posts about tire size, rim size and rim offset - can make a huge difference in the appearance.)
In the end - do what you like.
 
I have the faux wood interior kit on my 2004, which I prefer because it dulls down the shiny. I drive with my top down probably 7-8 months a year so I prefer to not have too much reflecting or shining back at me. (Just an aside, I never wear a red shirt - sunlight reflects on the gauges and makes me think a warning light is on - arrgh.)
(I like the black wheels. Before you pull the trigger I would read up on all the posts about tire size, rim size and rim offset - can make a huge difference in the appearance.)
In the end - do what you like.
Sound advice, Mach 5, thanks. There are two kits online. One is only 60 dollars, but it's vinyl, only has appearance of brushed aluminum. Carid.com has a kit that is 160 dollars but it's real brushed aluminum. Metal molded to the shape of the retro bird dash. I prefer the latter.

I think my biggest priority should be exercising patience. I have had the bird only two weeks, I need to get some miles on it to decide if I really want to start adding after-market. A challenge for me because I'm an after-market addict. A few years ago I spent 10 grand on after-market for a Mustang GT converting it to a Steeda Mustang.

I see you have a 2004 merlot. Another great color. Actually I don't think I've seen any retro bird color where I thought, ooh, I don't like that color.

Oh I guess I should stay on topic of this thread. What did I do to my TBird today? Added some minor convenience items for the interior - sun visor for the windshield, Iphone holder, etc.

I also bought an Innova Dongle to talk to the car's computer using a smartphone app. A disappointment, but I need to play with it some more to grasp the configuration. So far it just seems like a repeat what the manual says for recommended maintenance. I thought it gave actual readouts of components that are controlled by the car's computers.
 
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Update on Innova Dongle....I returned it, pretty much worthless. My bad for not researching before purchasing. Mostly all bad reviews, customers experience the same problems I did. Takes forever for it to read the car's data, more often just stuck on "loading." It says "takes up to 5 min." After 45 minutes still stuck on "loading." It defaults to canned messages on recommended maintenance. Don't need to pay 80 bucks for a device/app to just repeat what the owner's manual already says.
 
What I did to my TBird today....serviced - oil/filter changed. The connector from the starter to battery cable was corroded. They disconnected and cleaned thoroughly. Of course, you lose memory settings. Minor issue I'm willing to reprogram to ensure good connectivity.

Also, the TSW Silverstones I mentioned above, I ordered them and they were supposed to be installed this week. Got a call from Discount Tire that they were not available until further notice. So back to ground zero shopping for wheels.
 
What I did to my Thunderbird today........Today, I had brakes inspected on the bird, some wear on the pads, but not ready to replace. I've been been pricing Powerstop performance brake rotors and pads and shopping Thunderbird caliper covers. When pads need replacing, may just do complete upgrade on brake system. At the moment, brakes are fine, but they seem a little "spongy" for lack of a better description. Not a top priority since it's not my daily driver. Photos of my bird and daily driver (Ford Ranger) in my photo album.
 
Today....I installed my real brushed aluminum dash kit....Part 1. It's a 26 piece set, I say part 1 because I'm doing a section at a time. Likely I will include most of it, but today I installed the center instrument cluster only. I will wait a few days to see if I prefer to stop there or continue. Photos in my album.
 

JW in Dixie

Well-Known Member
Bird is in the cage with top still down. 100 degrees about 15 days ago, 4 days rain, and tonight it will drop to 31. Low 32 next four nights. In Dixie in October! What happened to the Fall I was waiting for - nice day trips into the Tennessee hills?? :( GRRR (Should kill the dang bugs!)
 
Today....I installed my real brushed aluminum dash kit....Part 2. Didn't use all 26 pieces. It had some horizontal strips that go below the factory silver pinstripe trim that I particularly didn't care for and I left off the large piece that goes on the shifter/cupholder console. Just didn't like the look of it. Used the door trim and vent trims. Including the instrument panel, I wound up using about only half of the 26 piece set. Photos in my album.
 

Oldiger

Active Member
Had coffee today with a good friend who owns a 56 Thunderbird. He has put a lot of money into it in the last year keeping it roadworthy. Told me today he was going to sell it and buy one like mine.;) So he asked me to keep my eyes open for a 2005. My suggestion was that he looks for an "anniversary" special. They seem to have fewer things go wrong with them. If you hear of one pass on the information to me so I can pass it on to him. Thanks, happy holidays.
Oldiger
 
One more note on the dash kit. I decided to create a Thunderbird dash kit forum. It took a couple days to build the forum, now all I need is the domain. Someone already owns the URL ThunderbirdDashKitForum.com, but it is inactive. I sent them an email to see if they are interested in selling the domain name.
 
Today, I ordered a set of brushed aluminum door sills with the tbird logo for my 2004 thunderbird. American Carcraft, supposedly they are the actual manufacturer, currently have these on sale for $135.00. A set of these go for a whopping $350.00 at the thunderbird specialties website. I have no idea why they are so expensive there. It appears they just order them from American Carcraft also, but who knows.

 

Whiz

2003 SEMA Thunderbird
Up until the rain yesterday, the past few days in So Cal have been perfect for top-down cruising around town. This week I installed the K&N Typhoon CAI and the Borla exhaust. Both fit as well they should have with the exception of the larger diameter hose to the K&N. There was no way in hell that the stock hose was going to fit, it required some McGivering... The car now breathes better and sounds as it should (IMO)! 106057A0-80ED-4C25-AFCE-C387306B0FD9.jpeg106057A0-80ED-4C25-AFCE-C387306B0FD9.jpeg
 
I've seen these threads on many other forums I'm apart of. Don't know if it would be as active here, but figured I would start the thread. If there is already one going, let me know.

So, what did you do to your Tbird today?

I'll start. Put the hardtop on it Sunday since we've got a week of mid 80's. Drove it to work yesterday and today. I must say, I enjoy this car so much. It's an awesome ride that gets tons of looks and is an awesome cruiser.
My 55 is stored for winter but today installed Pertronix electronic ignition and flame thrower coil. Fired right up once timing was locked on.
 

Oldiger

Active Member
Up until the rain yesterday, the past few days in So Cal have been perfect for top-down cruising around town. This week I installed the K&N Typhoon CAI and the Borla exhaust. Both fit as well they should have with the exception of the larger diameter hose to the K&N. There was no way in hell that the stock hose was going to fit, it required some McGivering... The car now breathes better and sounds as it should (IMO)! View attachment 9393View attachment 9393
Up until the rain yesterday, the past few days in So Cal have been perfect for top-down cruising around town. This week I installed the K&N Typhoon CAI and the Borla exhaust. Both fit as well they should have with the exception of the larger diameter hose to the K&N. There was no way in hell that the stock hose was going to fit, it required some McGivering... The car now breathes better and sounds as it should (IMO)! View attachment 9393View attachment 9393
Hey Whiz, just ordered the K&N for my 05. What did you have to alter so I know what to get? Thanks,
Oldiger
 

Whiz

2003 SEMA Thunderbird
Hey Whiz, just ordered the K&N for my 05. What did you have to alter so I know what to get? Thanks,
Oldiger
Hey Oldiger, happy holidays! The directions are pretty clear and concise, you just need to make sure you’re orienting the brackets correctly according to the pictures. Everything about the fit was perfect except for the larger diameter emission hose. The larger nipple on the K&N was too big to fit the stock hose over it. I ran to O’Reilly’s and got a foot of 1” heater hose and a couple of clamps. I cut the stock hose, slipped it inside a short piece of the heater hose and clamped it tight. Clamped the heater hose to the K&N as well. You’ll see it in the picture. I hadn’t read this issue anywhere else, so maybe it was just my particular setup, you may not need anything extra at all. You’ll notice the difference. Enjoy!
 
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