71 CJ XR7 Rebuild - Warning lots of pics

Not really a restoration as I’m taking a few liberties with this car. Nothing that can not be correct with little effort.\

As always never progressing fast enough (too many other projects) and had problems with the first paint shop I used.

Hope the pictures and details help someone else along the way with their efforts.

What I started with.

Purchased this Cougar (only older version I’ve ever owned) back in the 80’s when I was buying as selling allot of classics (mostly Mustangs and Shelby’s) Got it from a local guy who’s parents purchased it originally. He had been a bad a** as one point and had (at time of purchased) started attending a local church and wanted to sell the car to have the tattoo’s on his face (did the Charley Manson thing) remove as the other church members were looking at him a little funny.

Car was pretty original (most of the original paint was still there) and fairly rust free (not as perfect as most of the local car but not bad). Drove the car a few months and it developed some piston noise so I parted it with the others for about 25 years.

Then about five years ago I figured I would rebuild it as my daily driver and the fun began

Engine went to school with my son as a shop project. A big change from all the little 4 cylinders and import engines the other kids were working on

For the concours types - a copy of the Marti report and some of the paint marks found on the car

Not restored just cleaned up a bit and stripes reapplied

Front springs - only found the over/under mark

Original hose

Headlight assembly dated

Current (well fairly) stage of the rebuild

One change was to a NOS XR7 kilo speedo (export/overseas speedo) I found years ago. Get a fair amount of comments about it when they see “top” speed and think is mph :wink:

Also added an electric/remote trunk latch

Original paint details that we’re reproduce on the car again

Hood edge black out. Dusting over the black from an exterior repaint

Front valance top and bottom - Original paint

Front fender black out

more pics please!!! :clap: :clap: :clap:

Very nice :thumbup:


Look great so far, as stated above more pics please. :slight_smile:



Black out details of the original grill - certain sections of the grill were sprayed black to make them “disappear” from view

Horizontal support bar black out

Support leg black out

Grill emblem mounting area black out

Some additional pictures taken during the process

Found the rear valance blacked out along the upper edge (under rear bumper)

Original dated AC clutch and pulley assembly

As mentioned - not a restoration (going to drive this one) so a quick clean up and some new parts. With a few concours details added/retained.

As found in the engine compartment batch or slop gray was also used/applied to part of the front bumper mounting assembly (as labeled)

:drool: Nice!

Your making me drool, I loved the 71 xr7 that I had, this brings back memory’s!
Very nice car.

Man, this is really cool.
I like what you’re doing with it and hope you’ll continue to keep us updated. :beerchug:

Oh this is taking for every by most of you know the tune. Lately its the power steering

Anyway - bottom of the hood detailed (will post pictures of the inspector stamps that were returned to the bottom) with the windshield washers and the black out. Ready to be installed. Though it’s being built as my daily driver its hard to ignore the concours details after doing it for all these years. Guess its will not hurt the final product much :wink:

Another installment - Progress is slow as usual. Only getting one day a week in on this one

Basically got everything done under the hood other than charging the AC. All new (new style) seals in place last week, carb rebuilt and all the settings done. Again - not a full restoration - did take a few liberties, sort of in the spirit of the original Resto Mod or in some areas Day #2 idea. At this point only intake, carb and ignition along with the supporting hardware. Should have the Quadrajet but it’s sitting on the shelf for now. Interior I did the Kilo (220 kph) and the radio (with hidden speakers) as changes.

Time to install the fenders - but have to prep them first. Rear edge black out returned.

Mask, rough with a pad, clean and shoot. NOTE - I left on the original sound deadener on the back side of the fender. This will be overcoated with a fresh coat once the fender and splash shields are installed to give the factory look

I am missing one side of the fender rear edge filler piece. Too bad someone is not reproducing these but understand since they were used only for a short period - not many to sell to. Will leave the one off until I get a pair

Deleted and combined with the post above

Deleted and combined with the post above

Fenders on at least - not still happy with all the gaps and fit - will address that next time

Starting to look like a real car - but the color (Comp Yellow) is much brighter in person. Pictures make it look like station wagon yellow :frowning:

Could not help myself (considering my background) from making up some paint inspector stamps and laying an a few in the proper location. Still need to make a different one for the doors. Not easy to see the white on the bright yellow

Very nice… Looks like you are in the home stretch.

Everything a Mercury Cougar should be; powerful, comfortable and let’s not forget sexy!

That car will make a terrific driver.

Thanks so much for going to all the trouble to post the progress pictures Jeff!