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Shelby GT350 re-assembly

Started by peranaman, December 09, 2019, 10:54:42 AM

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Hi everyone. New to the forum. Shame to start with a seemingly stupid question. But here goes.....
I wonder if you can help me please?

In 2015 I dismantled my Mustang Shelby GT350 with a view to a full restoration. It's stripped, primered and now my bodyshop guys want to do a first fit of all the pods, scoops, front panels, grill etc etc.

Since I dismantled it 4 years ago I've had some health problems that that put me out of the picture for a while. I can't recall the exact re-assembly process for the front end pieces in partlicular.

I have all the parts, all the new Shelby bolts and fittings, all the correct brackets. I just want to process to go perfectly before we blend all the parts and do final primer.

So here's my questions:-

1. Does anyone have a video or some pictures showing the proper way the Shelby front end is put back together?

2. If not do you know anywhere I might get something that is pretty idiot proof?

3. I have the Shelby Unique parts catalog but it's not the easiest to read.

4. Ive searched Youtube and got quite a lot of good stuff, but mainly I need the proper location and fixing of the lower front section, upper section, inner grill, hood extender and headliamp bowl brackets.

I know it's probably easy but I've lost some confidence if I'm honest.

I am totally willing to pay for such a short video of good photographic / diagramatic instruction.

Many thanks  Chris in the UK.

ps to be accurate - my car is a 68 Fastback but all the parts are genuine Shelby KR500 including all body work pieces, sump, inlet manifold, interior etc etc. The restoration will do justice to the original without a doubt.



Tired Sheep


GT350 KR500 1968 fastback

Is this a Shelby or a clone?


The car is a 68 Fastback.

I have all the Genuine Shelby parts for the re-construction. The parts came from an original KR500.

The end result will by a GT350 replica.

All I'm asking for is some guidance on the front end re-assembly to get it fitted up right before paint goes on. It's in primer at the moment.

I'm hoping for assistance, not wishing to start a clone/replica war.

If anyone can point to a good video or pictorial re-assembly of front end that'll be great.  thanks Chris


I'd be surprised if you find a specific video or a step-by-step DIY instruction document, you're looking for.

The SAAC Forum membership has tremendous knowledge and it's been my experience that a specific question will get a great answer. An answer to the question you posed is not an easy one. It could be quite lengthy with details and getting the steps in proper sequence, if there is a specific sequence.

To help ease your anxiety about assembling your car as AO Smith did back in late '67 through '68, think of it this way; AO Smith received a basically assembled Mustang, sans the Fiberglas body parts. They then installed the fiberglas parts, a few lights, some ancillary gauges, badges, and decals, a few interior parts, and presto-change-o, out the shipping door came a 1968 Shelby. If you have the 1968 Shelby GT350/500 Illustrations, Assembly Procedures & Parts List booklet, you're practically home free. That's not to say practice always followed the assembly illustrations, but deviations were limited.

I too am an amateur when it comes to working on these cars. I think that you'll find, just as I did, assembling one of these cars isn't that difficult, when armed with the afore mentioned booklet. Once you start, assembly has a way of working itself out. I sometimes found it to be therapeutic, with a beer or two, after a day in the office. If you're working with a professional body person, they should be able to provide help based on their prior experiences.

While I wasn't able to provide exactly what you asked for, I hope I provided a useful resource and some encouragement.

Good luck with your endeavor and enjoy the process.

I have owned 8T03S-01425 since 06/76.
I owned 6S2295 in 1973 & '74.


Hey Chris,
       I hear what you are saying about the task looking daunting, but once you get started, each part, like a piece of a puzzle, will tell you where it goes. I am going from memory but I think this order of install will get you a good way down the road.
1) install the hood and hang the fenders. Line up the hood and fenders so they have nice gaps both between the fenders and the hood and between the fenders and the doors. At this time, the hood latch bracket should be installed to the radiator support so you can close and latch the hood for proper alignment. Getting everything to line up takes a good deal of trial and error so be patient. 
2) install the wiring that will connect to the headlights, horns, fog lights and turn signals. This wiring loom runs along the bottom of the radiator support.
3) install the fog lamp support with the fog lamp support brackets. These attach to the radiator support. For a picture, go to the Branda Performance website and search under 1968 Shelby parts in the "Exterior" section.
4) install the four bumper brackets and lower valance together -- if I recall correctly, you want to loosely position the four bumper brackets through the lower valance, install the lower valance and then install the bolts to hold the bumper brackets to the frame of the car
5) if you have removed the headlights, install those with their brackets
6) install the fiberglass head light buckets. Note there are studs that poke through the front of the fenders and you will attach a nut to each one. Patience and a very long socket extension are required for getting each nut in place and tightened down. Don't overtighten!
7) at this point, some loosening and positioning and loosening and positioning may be necessary to get the fit you want. The good news is you say you have all original pieces so they should fit together nicely. Some of the repro pieces don't fit so well
8 ) install the fog lamps and connect the wiring
9) install the mesh grille
10) connect the wiring to the turn signals, horns and head light bulbs
11) install the S-H-E-L-B-Y letters onto the upper nose panel and then install the upper nose panel by attaching the ends to the head light buckets and the two tabs to the hood latch bracket
12) install the chrome pieces that surround the front of the grille-opening by using the special clips available from Branda, Virginia Mustang or other venders

There will definitely be some trial-and-error, some back tracking, some check-and-fit work to be done. Be patient, give yourself plenty of time and you will certainly have everything in place and looking good. I hope this helps.


I ,also,appreciate that advice. Trying to assemble restored parts without damage is a big challenge. Those that have done this many,many times can be a huge source of knowledge/experience. Sometimes you just need an extra hand to install a part,or other times it is the order of assembly we need help...many thanks to those willing to share and help


Good evening (or morning :)) Chris.   
I restored my '69 GT350 4-7 years ago after disassembling it in the late 70's. My advise to you is to spend all your spare time reading every  thread that might pertain to your car. There is a ton of wealth buried in this forum (although a lot was lost in the crash a couple of years ago) but as stated ask specific questions and you will receive answers from some of the best experts in existence. Good luck with the restoration. I don't think you will be shamed for building a replica as long as you are honest about it.

1969 GT350 owned since 1970

69 GT350 Vert

I suggest you purchase fastener kit 1968 Shelby Master Body from AMK Products, Inc.  All of the correct, new fasteners make life much easier.  Even the descriptions of what each individual kit contains will help a lot. 


Smart move to reassemble after priming/fitting but before painting.  Makes sure you will do a stellar job on it.  Prime, fit, fix any issues, knock down to paint