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Thread: VicCrownVic's 1991 Mercury Grand Marquis LS "The Scab"

  1. #1
    Approaching 2 decades of DDing Box Panthers VicCrownVic's Avatar
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    Default VicCrownVic's 1991 Mercury Grand Marquis LS "The Scab"

    I picked up another rotbox over the weekend. I found it on CL Thursday night and bought it on Saturday.

    It's a 1991 Mercury Grand Marquis LS, Medium Woodrose Metallic, that I've named "The Scab". I don't usually name my cars, but "The Scab" seems fitting. It's roughly the color of a scab and since my Crystal Blue Metallic '91 MGM GS has been threatening to go on strike I decided to hire "The Scab".

    There are a few very badly rotted spots, but for the price the car was everything I was looking for. The worst rot spots are the passenger side rocker panel that is pretty much gone, the A-pillars, and the driver side dogleg. The car had Tuff-Kote Dinol applied at some point, which from what I can tell is basically like Ziebart and has about the same result. From what I was able to see of the underside, it looks like undercoating did a better job than the stuff in the rocker panels. I'll get a better look at the underside this weekend when I go back to my parents' house to get the car.

    The "good" side:

    (dads Tortoise, my Yukon, and my uncles Mountaineer in the background)

    The nasty side:

    (brother and nephew in the background)

    I have trim on my trunk, I haven't had a trunk with trim since 2009.

    (mom's Exploder, dad's Screwbaru, dad's '45 Dodge, and my uncle's Cheby (same uncle with the Mountaineer) in the background. My blue '91 MGM and a red Ponticrack Sunfire are also hiding behind the Exploder)

    I'll try to get more pics when I'm up there again this weekend.



    The adventure:

    Dad and I set out from his place to meet the PO after he got home from work Saturday. I thought to myself, "I should grab my brand new 2G out of my '89 MGM"... of course I didn't. I also thought to myself, "I should grab my tools"... but since we were taking dad's car he's always got tools in his trunk. Besides, the seller said it runs and drives and was ready to drive home.

    When we got there, the PO and his dad were having problems starting the car. The battery wasn't charged enough to start the car so we grabbed my dad's battery from his car, that's when dad asked the seller to borrow tools to get his battery. He had been working on something else and didn't put his tools back in his car. The car started right up and sounded great. We swapped the battery back in while it was running and let the alternator do its thing. I was a bit worried about the alternator but the battery light eventually went out so after paper work was signed and some green pieces of paper were exchanged Dad and I set out on our 80ish mile journey mile back to his place. Going down the freeway the car ran, drove, and stopped great just like the seller said it would, but the battery light was on again. After a while it went out and I figured maybe it'll be good. 19 miles into the trek home the battery light came back on again but this time things were getting pretty dim so about 20 miles in I pulled into a parking lot and was really kicking myself for not grabbing my alternator and tools.

    Of course all the auto-parts stores were closing in 2 minutes and we were more than 2 minutes away from the closest one. I hopped in dad's car with him and he was going to get some tools so we could try swap batteries and see how far we could get. Once we got to a store I got an idea to phone a friend for some help. I frantically called DerekTheGreat knowing that he had recently done a 3G upgrade and might have a 2G I could borrow. We were about 2 miles from his place (9 miles from my place, but my place wasn't our destination; no plates at my place=towed faster than I can say wtf). Derek saved the night for me. With his 2G and a jump start, dad and I were on our way again. The rest of the 60ish miles home went flawless.

    Easter Sunday I fixed the driver door that wouldn't open from the outside and lubed the hood latch that didn't want to operate without help. I got my insurance, plate, and registration today and this weekend I'll be back up at my parent's place to work on all the minor issues I can, drive it home, and start DDing it Monday.
    Vic

    ~ 1991 Mercury Grand Marquis LS "The Scab" - plenty of rot, summer DD
    ~ 1997 GMC Yukon - wannabe winter DD - I'll fix it eventually
    ~ 1991 Mercury Grand Marquis GS "The Ice Car" - My rotting winter DD
    ~ 1989 Mercury Grand Marquis GS - Rotting Retired DD
    Gone but not forgotten:
    ~ 1988 Country Squire ~ 1987 Ford Crown Vic


  2. #2
    The Brown Blob 87gtVIC's Avatar
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    Turbines!

    Did the previous owner tow anything with that bumper? mounted hitch?
    ~David~

    My 1987 Crown Victoria Coupe: The Brown Blob
    My 2004 Mercedes Benz E320:The Benz

    Quote Originally Posted by DerekTheGreat View Post
    But, that's just coming from me, this site's biggest pessimist. Best of luck

  3. #3
    GMN Regular DerekTheGreat's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by VicCrownVic View Post
    I picked up another rotbox over the weekend. I found it on CL Thursday night and bought it on Saturday...

    The adventure:

    Dad and I set out from his place to meet the PO after he got home from work Saturday. I thought to myself, "I should grab my brand new 2G out of my '89 MGM"... of course I didn't. I also thought to myself, "I should grab my tools"... but since we were taking dad's car he's always got tools in his trunk. Besides, the seller said it runs and drives and was ready to drive home.
    "Seller says runs and drives..." Yeah, never believe anything they say haha. The only cars we've ever bought that made it home without issue were Ashley's rot box '90 F150, her '89 Town Car and my '88 Town Car. Our GMC has that same Dinol Tuffcoat stuff on it. Have to admit it has kept the floor pans & frame clean while it sat and provided a home for many a squirrel and other rodents. Still finding acorns in the engine bay some 1.5 years later...

    Quote Originally Posted by VicCrownVic View Post
    When we got there, the PO and his dad were having problems starting the car...
    Reminds me of when I first pulled up on my '85, the hood was open and the seller was scratching his head. When I called him and asked him about it and if it needed anything he said, "Needs nothing, drives great!" Yeah, my ass... Just like your car it needed a battery (because the cheap ass didn't want to let his Wal-Fart battery go with it) and a starter solenoid. Car was leaking oil from the valve cover gaskets bad and coolant was all over the timing cover but because it was relatively solid and I just sold my beater '91 F-150 I had to have it...

    "The Scab" - LoL. Thought the name was for the rust but more fitting since it is taking the place of your old GS. I found a rotten $350 F250 on CL, could be a great contender for a clang & bang before sending them both to the scrap yard..

    Glad I could help get your new wreck back home. What about all those upgrades you did to Crystal Blue Persuasion?
    Last edited by DerekTheGreat; 03-29-2016 at 06:30 AM.
    1985 LTD Crown Victoria - SOLD
    1988 Town Car Signature - Current Party Barge

  4. #4
    GMN Regular DerekTheGreat's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 87gtVIC View Post
    Turbines!
    Oh yeah, if you aren't going to want those turbines I know someone who does... Me!
    1985 LTD Crown Victoria - SOLD
    1988 Town Car Signature - Current Party Barge

  5. #5
    Do a burnout, pussy. Bobcat's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DerekTheGreat View Post
    Oh yeah, if you aren't going to want those turbines I know someone who does... Me!
    You people disgust me!

    I couldn't ever get rid of mine, no one wanted those damn things.
    __________________________________________________


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    The only 6 speed box on a late model frame.

    Quote Originally Posted by SVT98t View Post
    It has air ride. I've disabled it since I've been jacking it up and down.

    That is how you're supposed to jack it.

    Up and down.

    -ryan s.

  6. #6
    GMN Regular DerekTheGreat's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bobcat View Post
    You people disgust me!

    I couldn't ever get rid of mine, no one wanted those damn things.
    Sounds like you weren't marketing them to the right audience haha. A little over a year ago I was looking for a good winter set for my car and even bought a set from "purplebomb" but those were too pitted to actually use. Now that my car has seen abuse from tire shops my original set that were fairly minty are getting beat up from their abuse. Time to start thinking about having a set restored..
    1985 LTD Crown Victoria - SOLD
    1988 Town Car Signature - Current Party Barge

  7. #7
    Approaching 2 decades of DDing Box Panthers VicCrownVic's Avatar
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    The PO was a good guy to deal with, he wasn't trying to hide anything, and it actually does run and drive as well as he described. I'm guessing he was in his early 20s, the car technically was owned by his mom, just like "my" first two were owned by my dad (in MI it saves a ton on insurance that way). When all is said and done this one should come out cheaper than the blue '91 when purchase price and parts are considered.

    Actually the rust is the other reason for the name, lol. The engine on the '91 GS was threatening to go on strike this morning, I should be able to get through the week with it but I'm glad we took my dad's car to pick this one up. I put about 46K miles on the GS since I got it back in October 2012 so it served me well enough. I may or may not swap the 110K mile engine from my '89 GS into the '91 GS, I just didn't have time to do the swap with the car being my only vehicle on the road.

    If this car gets me through the summer that's all I really need, and I think it will easily do that and more.

    Before the seller inherited the car it belonged to his grandmother, and I don't suspect that any heavy towing was done with that bumper mounted hitch; the bumper is straight and mounted firmly.


    As for mods the '91 GS received, the ones that can be swapped to this LS are as simple as unplugging the adapters I made and moving the stuff over. This car has manual HVAC so the EATC will not be going into this car, but the 3G, headlight relay harness, and cluster can all be moved over as if they were plug and play thanks to the adapters I made. For now I'm just sticking my '90-'91 police cluster in since it has a working odometer. Blue LEDs do not suite this car so it'll be getting red LEDs, but only in the cluster and maybe heater control head.

    I'm not a huge fan of the turbines, the set that came with my '91 GS promptly made their way to my '89 but they didn't have new tires on them and holding air was an issue and the wheels from the '89 with brand new tires went to the '91. I didn't really look at the wheels on this LS too well, but I think they are not in that great of shape. They do have fairly new tires on them, but the front passenger side one was run up against a curb for a while or something. Whatever it was that wheel doesn't look like it was hit by it.

    I'll try to get some interior pics this weekend. Other than the C-pillar sail panels the interior looks like it's in decent shape. It has premium sound, although it doesn't sound as good as my mom's '87 Country Squire premium sound did, power antenna, manual heater controls, manual passenger seat, and light brown cloth seats.
    Vic

    ~ 1991 Mercury Grand Marquis LS "The Scab" - plenty of rot, summer DD
    ~ 1997 GMC Yukon - wannabe winter DD - I'll fix it eventually
    ~ 1991 Mercury Grand Marquis GS "The Ice Car" - My rotting winter DD
    ~ 1989 Mercury Grand Marquis GS - Rotting Retired DD
    Gone but not forgotten:
    ~ 1988 Country Squire ~ 1987 Ford Crown Vic


  8. #8
    GMN Regular DerekTheGreat's Avatar
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    Does your car have the silver football for an amp or the little black box? Probably has the silver football, which for some reason Ford used into the 80's so it's quite possible that you have one in your '91 too. IMO I think the premium sound sucks dogs, especially compared to the factory JBL stuff. The good thing is you wont need to find different door panels or make grilles & add wires when you go to swap out the speakers. If you have the black box type amp you need to come pick up one of my spare JBL amps & 6x9's to experience the difference
    1985 LTD Crown Victoria - SOLD
    1988 Town Car Signature - Current Party Barge

  9. #9
    Beater gonna beat sly's Avatar
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    +1 the football amps (even when working) aren't that good. The newer head unit I put in the Lincoln had more and cleaner power per channel than that old amp. Of course, it is 30 years newer.

    Only two things are infinite, the universe and human stupidity, and I'm not sure about the former. -- Albert Einstein
    rides: 88 MGM (SOLD), 93 Vic, 2000 Crown Vic, 2003 Expedition
    Quote Originally Posted by gadget73
    ... and it should all work like magic and unicorns and stuff.
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  10. #10
    Approaching 2 decades of DDing Box Panthers VicCrownVic's Avatar
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    It's the silver football amp mounted behind the rear passenger seat in the trunk. I don't know if my mom's '87 Country Squire would have been JBL or not but it sure sounded better than this system.
    Vic

    ~ 1991 Mercury Grand Marquis LS "The Scab" - plenty of rot, summer DD
    ~ 1997 GMC Yukon - wannabe winter DD - I'll fix it eventually
    ~ 1991 Mercury Grand Marquis GS "The Ice Car" - My rotting winter DD
    ~ 1989 Mercury Grand Marquis GS - Rotting Retired DD
    Gone but not forgotten:
    ~ 1988 Country Squire ~ 1987 Ford Crown Vic


  11. #11
    GMN Regular DerekTheGreat's Avatar
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    The country squire I tore into about a year ago had the square black amp, which is much better. Can't understand why Ford used that POS football for so long. My '88 shop manual describes the black type amp for the Fords & Mercs and for Lincoln as well as an addition for the JBL amp, which use the same plugs so a swap is a piece of cake. IIRC all the football stuff is common ground, which means upgrading your stereo will be a PITA since you'll have to rewire all the speaks. I could be wrong about that though.
    1985 LTD Crown Victoria - SOLD
    1988 Town Car Signature - Current Party Barge

  12. #12
    GMN Regular DerekTheGreat's Avatar
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    I wonder if it had to do with assembly plants..
    1985 LTD Crown Victoria - SOLD
    1988 Town Car Signature - Current Party Barge

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    So your blue GM will become a parts car?
    '79 Continental Town Car
    '90 Crown Victoria LTD
    '94 Crown Victoria

  14. #14
    Approaching 2 decades of DDing Box Panthers VicCrownVic's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 79lincolnlover View Post
    So your blue GM will become a parts car?
    That is yet to be determined, but very likely. The other likely option is to yank the engine from my '89 and put in the blue one. If I end up doing that engine swap I will have no reason to keep the '89 around. As attached as my wife and I are to the '89, it's just too far gone to do anything with.

    I worked on this one today but without a garage, out in the snow and cold, I didn't get as much done as I wanted to.
    This car made an 80 mile drive home only needing an alternator at 20 miles in. Today it was running funny after about 30 miles today, so hopefully throwing a fuel filter and spark plugs and wires at it sorts it out. I had planned on doing all that today, but the car showed no signs of needing any of it and I was wet and cold and running out of time. Otherwise I'll push the blue one for another week until I can work on this one next weekend.
    Vic

    ~ 1991 Mercury Grand Marquis LS "The Scab" - plenty of rot, summer DD
    ~ 1997 GMC Yukon - wannabe winter DD - I'll fix it eventually
    ~ 1991 Mercury Grand Marquis GS "The Ice Car" - My rotting winter DD
    ~ 1989 Mercury Grand Marquis GS - Rotting Retired DD
    Gone but not forgotten:
    ~ 1988 Country Squire ~ 1987 Ford Crown Vic


  15. #15
    Do a burnout, pussy. Bobcat's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by viccrownvic View Post
    as for mods the '91 gs received, the ones that can be swapped to this ls are as simple as unplugging the adapters


    ls and swap in the same sentence
    __________________________________________________


    1985.03 Crown Vic. Coupe "CVGT" Build thread - china whirlybird, burnout machine.
    The only 6 speed box on a late model frame.

    Quote Originally Posted by SVT98t View Post
    It has air ride. I've disabled it since I've been jacking it up and down.

    That is how you're supposed to jack it.

    Up and down.

    -ryan s.

  16. #16
    Approaching 2 decades of DDing Box Panthers VicCrownVic's Avatar
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    LOL, not that kind of LS. Besides, all of my rot boxes would fall apart with anything more than a stock lopo. If I ever do any engine upgrade swap it will not be on any of the rot boxes that I currently own.

    Well, I found out what was causing The Scab to run funny. While shuffling vehicles in my parents' driveway I left it running and came back to it not running. It wouldn't start and appeared to be spark related. The coil looked like corroded crap so a new one that I had laying around went on along with a new wire (last set came with 2) from the coil to the dizzy. Still no start. Swapped my spare dizzy from the trunk of the blue GS and The Scab started right up.

    Since I didn't get to everything I wanted to do and I'm still waiting on some more parts (new hoses), The Scab is still at my parents' place and the blue GS will remain on DD duty for another week or two. It's supposed to be cold and snowy through next weekend so we'll see how much I get done next weekend. The cold forecast is also part of why the blue car is going home since it has much better heat.

    So far I've put over 150 miles on The Scab and it seems like it should be up to the task of beimg a temporary DD while I work on my other junk.
    Vic

    ~ 1991 Mercury Grand Marquis LS "The Scab" - plenty of rot, summer DD
    ~ 1997 GMC Yukon - wannabe winter DD - I'll fix it eventually
    ~ 1991 Mercury Grand Marquis GS "The Ice Car" - My rotting winter DD
    ~ 1989 Mercury Grand Marquis GS - Rotting Retired DD
    Gone but not forgotten:
    ~ 1988 Country Squire ~ 1987 Ford Crown Vic


  17. #17
    Southern
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    Now you have ditch lights! Nice find! congrats on the purchase - another fun thread to follow
    -Nick M.
    Columbia, SC

    1966 Ford Country Squire - 6.4L 390 2bbl/C6 - ~85K miles
    1989 Mercury Colony Park LS - 302 V8- 188K miles.
    1990 Lincoln Town Car Signature Series - 302 V8- 102K miles.
    2003 Lincoln Town Car Signature Series 3x - (42K, 79K-totaled, 222k)

  18. #18
    Approaching 2 decades of DDing Box Panthers VicCrownVic's Avatar
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    Thanks mang!

    I'm not sure how much fun will be in store for this one. If I end up keeping this one around for any amount of time I will probably end up replacing the manual heater and A/C control like Sly did on his ('93?). If I don't keep it around for more than a year I'll most likely end up selling it to my dad.

    I got out of work early today and hightailed it up to mom and dad's house. That gave me a couple hours of daylight to work on this one a bit more.

    I replaced the fuel filter, changed the oil and oil filter, and since I was running out of daylight and the temperature was plummeting the last thing I did was adjust both passenger doors since they weren't closing tightly.
    Tomorrow I will be replacing hoses, flushing the heater core (if I cause it to leak, I'll bypass it and replace it later), replace spark plugs and wires, check the timing and set as needed, test/service/clean out the EGR since it was setting a code and if needed I'll replace it with one of my spares, then move on to the window motors and hopefully take it out for a spin before heading home tomorrow evening.
    Vic

    ~ 1991 Mercury Grand Marquis LS "The Scab" - plenty of rot, summer DD
    ~ 1997 GMC Yukon - wannabe winter DD - I'll fix it eventually
    ~ 1991 Mercury Grand Marquis GS "The Ice Car" - My rotting winter DD
    ~ 1989 Mercury Grand Marquis GS - Rotting Retired DD
    Gone but not forgotten:
    ~ 1988 Country Squire ~ 1987 Ford Crown Vic


  19. #19
    Approaching 2 decades of DDing Box Panthers VicCrownVic's Avatar
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    I left the blue car and The Scab is now home. The wind and snow was pretty intense this morning so I didn't get much done until around noon when the temperature made its way up to the upper 20s. New hoses are on and heater core is flushed and the heat now cooks. If I feel up to it I'll get to spark plugs, wires, and timing tomorrow. It's running well enough that I can wait for warmer weather next weekend if just don't feel like doing it tomorrow.

    I've put over 260 miles on and it looks like I'll finally be DDing this car. While this one is on DD duty I'll probably swap the engine from my '89 into the blue '91. Then, hopefully, get around to rebuilding the engine in the Yukon.
    Vic

    ~ 1991 Mercury Grand Marquis LS "The Scab" - plenty of rot, summer DD
    ~ 1997 GMC Yukon - wannabe winter DD - I'll fix it eventually
    ~ 1991 Mercury Grand Marquis GS "The Ice Car" - My rotting winter DD
    ~ 1989 Mercury Grand Marquis GS - Rotting Retired DD
    Gone but not forgotten:
    ~ 1988 Country Squire ~ 1987 Ford Crown Vic


  20. #20
    GMN Regular slack's Avatar
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    Nice! It's always a good feeling when you can start driving your new projects around.

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