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How to Install Quarter Windows on Your Fox Body Mustang Hatchback

Author: Bryan McTaggart | 02/24/2021 < Back to Motor Life Home
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Take a deep breath and brace yourself: every single year of Fox Body Mustang qualifies as a "classic car", so long as you are going by the standard rule of being over 25 years of age. That's right, that pristine 1993 Cobra is in the same classification as a 1979 Indy Pace Car. Now, in many ways, that's not a bad thing. The Fox chassis has held up well over the years, there's a ton of aftermarket support, and they might be the most malleable Ford performance car made since the 1932 Model 18...you know, the Deuce Coupe. Whether you like them as a drag car, a road course racer, a rally car (we've seen 'em!) or just a nice driver, the small size and big potential of the Fox-chassis Mustang has earned its place in automotive history, carved into stone. And they are still approachable in value, so if you were thinking about a potential project car or a mild restoration project, you would be hard-pressed to do better. There's just one issue with these cars...for every clean, cared-for example that was loved from day one, there's about a hundred that have seen every sort of use and abuse known to man. This is where the "classic" part of the equation does not work in the average buyer's favor. Even if the car wasn't beat to within an inch of its life, age takes its toll and one of the biggest tells on 1987-1993 Mustangs is the quarter windows. The car overall can be okay, but chances are good that if you check out the black surround that was new for the 1987 model year, you'll see checking, heat damage, shrinking, lifting and other undesirable traits.


If the photos don't tell you what you need to know about the 1989 Mustang LX that we have on-hand, let us explain: this poor four-cylinder hatch has seen seven shades of paint-job hell within its lifetime. In fact, its only saving grace is that the chassis is in great condition. It's as rough of a car as you'll find, an absolute basket case we picked up for a couple hundred dollars with the plan of converting it to V8 power. Most people would write this car off as a parts-only car, but we had a pile of parts laying around from another Fox body build and a spare 302 lying around, so we chose to resurrect this car after all. It'll never be a restored beauty but we do want it to be a solid performer, and we discovered early on that one item that badly needed to be addressed was the quarter windows. While the glass itself was fine, the seals were not. They were so cooked that the rear corners were lifting away from the body and there was a spot on the passenger side that had deteriorated so badly that water was actually leaking into the car. That had to be fixed and with the interior stripped out for other work, it was the perfect time to address the situation once and for all. With a set of Drake Muscle Cars quarter windows for the 1987-1993 Ford Mustang (part number E7ZZ-6129710-1B) and a quarter window installation kit from Late Model Restoration (part number HDW-29710B), we took on the project in our driveway. Follow along as we show you how we completed this in just a couple of hours!

Drake Mustang Quarter Window installation

Now, this next part is crucial, and you might want to ask a friend for help. GENTLY set the glass into position and start threading on the holding nuts. Once you have all nine nuts on their threads, HAND-TIGHTEN them down carefully, working your way around the perimeter of the glass, then towards the back. Tighten them down in small increments, and do not over-tighten! You should be able to see the butyl tape start to compress as you progress.


Drake Mustang roof rail treatment

Once you have the quarter window set in place, you can re-install the roof rail trim. This little protrusion on the quarter window slips into the roof rail trim's channel (outboard). Just be careful to not break that protrusion off!


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