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Austin Vert's Power Mirror Tutorial - Part 3


Hi and welcome to my third tutorial.In part three, we will be looking at starting the build by dismantling the two '94 original Thunderbird mirror assemblies,and then attending to the two '71 - '73 reproduction mirror assemblies and getting them prepped up for further usage later on.I will be providing some photos in this tutorial which will help to explain what is going on with the work involved.


We will start by pulling down and taking apart the T Bird assemblies. The best place to start is by using your Dremel tool with a very thin cut off wheel attached.Go to the top of the miiror housing or body and cut out and remove, a large section of the mirror body. We do this because this is the best and easiest way to gain access to take apart and remove the parts we want.Speaking of that very thing,here is a list of the parts that you will be keeping from the assemblies. The mirror motor and the wiring that is attached to it,colored red, yellow, and blue, the plastic back up mirror plate,the plastic tubing that acts as a wire protector, the big flat neoprean packing washer that goes between the motor and the back up plate.Take care when handling these old parts as you don't want to damage any of them.
Once the top section has been cut and removed, we now remove the mirror glass and back up plate part. Be careful here again when doing this. The best way is to try and get your finger tips under one end and the edge of the back up plate and apply firm but not too hard pressure upwards. Our aim is to prize or lift up the pack up plate off the circular mirror motor bezel. It also pays when you are prizing one end off, to support the opposite end of the back up plate to avoid putting too much strain on the motor bezel or back up plate.I find this technique works pretty well.
Once removed, you will see that the motor is held onto the mirror mounting bracket with three small but long screws with star heads on.These screws might be tight with age, so try not to strip out the heads.Remove the three screws, and remove the motor off the mounting bracket.If the motor is dusty or dirty, use a soft dry paint brush to clean it up. Never use and fluids or try and clean the motor.If the wiring came with an end plug, cut it off as you won't be needing that part. Feed the wiring back through the body, and take out the motor. TIP: Don't throw any thing away at this stage. Keep it all till the end of the project.

Next, we will soak or pickle the mirror glass and back up plate in a shallow container of wax and grease remover for about a day. NEVER use harsh solvents like thinners or acetone, as they will destroy the back up plate completely. That plastic is solvent sensitive. Wax and grease remover does the job very well without damaging any parts.After a day or so in the soak tank, the glass should separate from the plastic back up plate fairly easily.Clean any glue residues off the back up plate and dry off. You will be repeating this process the same for the second drivers side mirror assembly as well.So you now have taken all the parts you will need for the project off the original assembly, given them a clean up, and now they are ready to be used later on.There was a circular rubber bezel that acted as a water/ dust barrier and was located where the back up plate meets the motor bezel. I wanted to reuse this part in my system , but sadly when i tried to mount it on lastly, i found it would not fit properly as there was not enough room in the repro bodies to let that happen. On that point, my advice to all would be try to avoid as best you can, getting water back into the mirror housing when the project is finished. I myself, never wash my Mustangs in the traditional way with hose, bucket and sponge or rags. I think it would be foolish to let your garden hose blast water back into the mirror housing at all. I would be trying my best to keep it as dry as possible inside the housing area. That just makes sense to me.


In the case of the repro assemblies, we will only be keeping the mirror bodies themselves, and the two mirror glass/metal backup plates that come with the kit. These back up plates will serve as perfect templates for us to use when we later on construct the proper back up plates that we will be using for our project.Start on the drivers side assembly first, and unscrew the mirror back up plate and remove it from the body.Sadly, you will now have to cut the cable wires that link the toggle lever to the back up assembly. Unscrew the pedistal base off, from the upper body. You won't be keeping any hardware here.That's it.The two metal support profiles that are located on the inside walls of the body don't get touched, as they don't interfere with my operating mechanism at all. Next, we pull down the passengers side assembly.Simply unscrew the mirror back up plate assembly from the body, then unscrew the pedistal base off the upper body.Now, you will see a raised metal bar profile located in the middle of the hosing on the body floor. That was there of course to hold and capture the original back up assembly.We won't be needing that bar at all. It has to be removed. The best way i found to remove it was to use a air driven die grinder with a cylinder shaped metal tip filing rasp.

The metal we are dealing with here on the mirror bodies,is an alloy of sorts, and the rotary filing rasp takes care of the job quite well. Forget using your Dremel tool here. For this app, it's a toy and won't cut it. So work away at back grinding down the raised bar section in a careful manner. YOU STOP GRINDING WHEN YOU GET DOWN TO FLOOR SURFACE LEVEL. Don't start grinding into the floor itself. I would say, remove three quarters of that bar back into the housing. You can remove it all if you want. Once you have carried out this procedure,and you're happy, than that's it. You're now ready to move on. The two housings are now prepped up and ready for the next phase of usage in he project. BTW - If you insisted on using your original Ford factory sports mirrors for this project, (which i sincerely hope you have not) i hope you first checked out if the mouth opening measurements were exactly the same as the repro ones. If they were, then the procedure that i have talked about above, will be exactly the same for you in prepping up your original assemblies, as it is for the repro ones.

The next phase of the project concerns the building of the two motor support brackets. Building the brackets is a big part of my system where accuracy will really count in delivering a good final product.

Many thanks,


REFERENCE PHOTOS. (Sorry, they are not in correct order)


Attached Files Thumbnail(s)

Link to Part 4:


[Image: 1z21rv4.png]


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