If you happen to attend a car show and only one Mustang is there, a '67 Shelby GT500 would certainly be a good one. That's exactly what happened when we chanced upon this choice GT500 owned by Dan Patching, a Mustang lover since age 5 when he rode in his father's brand new '6411/42 coupe.
The show was put on by Dearborn Classics, a Bend, Oregon, parts house that specializes in components for all kinds of classic Fords other than Mustangs. We went with the staff of our sister magazine, Mustang & Fords, to have a look at the cool, non-Mustang Fords, and Dan's Shelby jumped out at us.
When he isn't keeping up with the demands of managing Brattain International Trucks, a big-rig repair facility in Bend, Dan and his wife, Jodi, take to the road in the Nightmist Blue Shelby they acquired in 2001, hitting shows all over central Oregon as well as Washington, Nevada, and northern California. Since this classic is a driver, one of the first orders of business was to make it more reliable with a freshened-up engine. Rick Lopez at Monkey Wrench Auto Service, also in Bend, ably handled the task.
The original block was bored 0.030 inch and given all the usual machining processes. The 428 crank and rods were also tidied up and fitted with new Sealed Power pistons to match the bored cylinders and net a 10.5:1 compression ratio. An Edelbrock Performer cam with a .572-inch lift and 296-degree advertised duration was installed to give the vintage big-block some extra Wheaties. Before being placed atop the new short-block, the original C7AE heads were treated to some porting and polishing work, and fitted with Sealed Power stainless valves in the stock 428CJ size.
Edelbrock Performer valvesprings complete the new engine, which is topped by its original induction system. This, of course, includes the dual-quad Medium Riser intake and a pair of rare and correct Holley 4160 four-barrel, 600-cfm carbs-one of the coolest features unique to '67 GT500s. With the ported heads, a bigger cam, a PerTronix ignition, plenty of carburetion, a 211/42-inch exhaust system with tri-Y headers, and R-model-style side tailpipes that exit in front of the rear wheels, Dan and Rick believe around 450 hp is being sent to the close-ratio Top Loader four-speed and 9-inch axle, now fitted with slightly taller 3.70 gears in lieu of the original stump-puller 4.11s.
Other than the built 428, the rest of the car is a well-preserved Shelby GT500, which includes all original body panels, a mostly original interior, and factory suspension pieces augmented by 111/48-inch front and 71/48-inch rear antisway bars. The original 11.3-inch front disc brakes and rear drums stop the car's original 15x7-inch Kelsey Hayes Mag Star wheels and modern 235/60R15 Cooper Cobra radial tires.
Inside, the interior looks like new with fresh carpeting and a few minor upholstery repairs. The only interior mod, as Dan puts it, is the "dash signed by Carroll Shelby," an appropriate signature if there ever was one. Just ask the man who owns one-and built them, too.