The Benefits of Hardware Kits
Thanks to some pretty awesome folks, I have the benefit of being able to buy concours-quality sets of replacement fasteners in hardware kits. One of the many great things about restoring an early Mustang is that I’m able to stand on the shoulders of the excellent hobbyists who’ve come before me. Thanks to the folks at AMK, who’ve totally geek’d out on the hardware front, I don’t have to spend the time refinishing bolts or struggle with trying to find a replacement if I lose or break one.
Yes, they are a little pricey. But for the cost of the parts tumbler I would’ve needed to refinish what I had, I was able to buy a complete chassis kit. And it saved me hours of wire brushing, sorting, and cataloging. Money well-spent in my opinion.
Hardware kits from AMK are available for “Mustang, Camaro, Firebird, GTO, Chevelle, Baracuda, Challenger and other 1960-1970’s classic American cars,” according to their website. The Master kits are the best deal, but if you need individual sets, they offer those as well. National Parts Depot seems to have the best prices I’ve found, although CJ Pony Parts gets close with some of their sales pricing since you can avoid paying sales tax in most cases.
My only issue so far with the AMK kits is that all of their nuts are slightly crushed so as (I assume) to aid in holding tight. It’s annoying because nuts are harder to put on, and none of the factory hardware I removed was like that, so I can only assume it’s an intentional “upgrade.” I’m worried things will be difficult to remove without breaking bolts once the threads get nasty with the passage of time. Removing the factory hardware (all of which I’ve saved, of course) went smoothly; I didn’t break a single bolt. But this stuff just seems like it’s going to be more of a challenge if I ever have to pull things apart. As always, lubricating the threads helps a lot!