So, I’ve got a Cougar. It’s a good, oh, 50 footer. It photographs remarkably well due to the fact that the body is conveniently painted the color of rust. The front passenger side needs body work, and the car came with a replacement fender extension and fender. Herein lies my dilemma.

I’ve always done the mechanical work on my project cars first. The Cougar runs and drives ok. It starts, stops, and steers (vaguely). I would even venture to say I’d drive across county right now and fully expect to arrive, although it would be a tiring, stinky, and uncomfortable ride.

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Once I get the mechanical done, I then usually move on. I tire of the project after a year or two, mainly because I’m impatient, and the bodywork/cosmetics seldom get done. The one time I did finish bodywork (yeah!), it literally hailed 3 days later while I was out of town and made a golf ball of every body panel. (Boo!)

I’m contemplating doing things out of order this time. Get the cosmetics in order first, although my brain can’t comprehend doing it that way. I still haven’t finalized my body color (either highland green, for a Cougar ‘Bullit’ style or original Jamaican Yellow...the dark house color candidate is B5 blue, or similar medium shade of blue) .

Mechanically, I’m sticking with OEM style suspension, power disc conversion, power steering.

What do you do Oppo? For your driver level resto candidate cars, bodywork, or mechanical work first?

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Jamaican yellow
Highland Green