Good or bad, a lot can happen to a long-in-the-tooth pony car over the course of 10 years. But, if the car’s lucky enough to fall into the skilled hands of Jason Frazer, you can bet the results will be spectacular.
Frazer poured a decade of meticulous on-again, off-again work into his 1965 Ford Mustang, transforming it into a breathtaking custom that just screams for attention… and it’s Frazer’s painstaking attention to detail that makes this fastback Ford something special indeed.
“The Mustang looked pretty good when I got it, so I thought I’d just drive it around for a while,” Frazer said. “Then the rear frame rail came through the floor. I decided to go all out and build a custom car that I could actually drive on the street.”
But, this wasn’t Frazer’s first rodeo. (Story continues below video.)
As a young man, he helped his uncle build a 1989 Fox body Mustang, and was always ready to lend a hand with his friends’ projects as he got older.
While he was equipped with plenty of experience and a desire to add even more tools to his skill set, Frazer was still a little short of some important resources.
“It came down to time and money. When I had time and money, I’d work on car…until I ran out of time or money, or both. I like to tell people I installed the engine on one Thanksgiving, and then the transmission went in the next Thanksgiving,” Frazer said.
Unlike most builds that remain stationary, his Mustang logged quite a few miles over 10 years.
“I was living in an apartment so I was always looking for a place to work on the car,” he said. “I’d find a place to work for a while and then I’d have to move the car somewhere else.”
Frazer stripped the Mustang by media blasting away years of paint and body filler, only to discover a good deal of the classic car had been lost to the ravages of time.
“I had to replace a lot of sheetmetal, including the floor pans and most of the rear end. I also added torque boxes and sub-frame connectors to reinforce the chassis,” he said.
Maintaining the Mustang’s timeless good looks was his top priority. He kept the body mods to a minimum, adding a fiberglass hood and scoop, and a Shelby GT350 front valance. The result is a modern take on the vintage pony cars that pounded the Trans-Am circuits of the ’60s.
With the 2+2’s bodywork in first-class shape, Frazer laid down a flawless two-tone paint job.
“I was going to paint the car silver with black stripes. Then I decided to paint the bottom half silver and the top half black,” he said.
Taking that color scheme to the next level, he also blacked out all of the trim above the color-break line, keeping the trim on the lower half bright. A red pinstripe adds a dash of color and separates the light from the dark hue.
Frazer also brought the two-tone color scheme indoors, installing platinum RCI harnesses draped over late-model Mustang front seats upholstered with TMI jet-black leather seat covers.
“My mom gave me a hand with the seat covers, and she also made the shifter boot,” he said.
The custom rear seat delete panel and center console, plus a 4-point roll bar, LeCarra steering wheel, and a full complement of Auto Meter Ultra-Lite gauges complete the competition-inspired interior.
After the Mustang’s original 289 developed a knock, Frazer swapped it for a Ford 331 stroker engine stuffed with an Eagle Specialty Products rotating assembly and a custom-ground COMP Cams camshaft. An Edelbrock Performer intake manifold and Thunder AVS carburetor handle the induction duties, and a set of ceramic-coated Hedman shorty headers send the combustion gasses to the Mustang’s custom 2.5-inch side-exit exhaust system
“I built the exhaust using Summit tubing and Dynomax bullet race mufflers. You can hear me from two blocks away,” he said. “And I painted the system with VHT paint so it’s easy to touch up before a car show.”
Frazer takes a philosophical view of some driveline upgrades that came courtesy of his heavy right foot.
“I replaced the original toploader with a Tremec TKO 600 transmission when the input shaft took out the clutch, and I dropped in a set of 3.80:1 gears and a Detroit Locker when I blew up the rear end. I like to build it, break it, and fix it,” he said.
When Frazer rolls out, he rolls on a set of MB Old School wheels wrapped with sticky Bridgestone Potenza rubber. Now that he’s not relocating the Mustang from garage to garage, he clocks about 2,000 miles every year, and you can bet his young son Pete will be along for the ride. But, when Pete’s not in his dad’s fastback, you’ll probably find him behind the wheel of his own ’65 Mustang—a custom pedal car built by his dad, fully equipped with lights, electronics, and much more.
You can learn a lot about Frazer just by looking at his car. Every detail speaks to his uncompromising quest for performance and perfection. And, when you see a father sharing his favorite hobby with his son, well that just says it all.
Frame: Stock with subframe connectors and torque boxes
Rear End: Ford 8″, 3.80:1 ring and pinion, Detroit Locker limited-slip differential, Moser axles
Suspension: Stock spindles, front lowering springs modified by owner, 5-leaf reverse-eyelet rear springs, KYB shock absorbers
Steering: Flaming River steering column and gearbox, LeCarra steering wheel
Brakes: Mach 1 front calipers and rotors, SVO rear calipers and rotors
Wheels and Tires: MB Old School 17″ x 8″ front and 17″ x 9.5″ rear wheels, Bridgestone Potenza RE760 Sport 225/45 R17 front and 265/40 R16 rear tires
Other Items: Baer Disc Brake Systems Tracker adjustable tie rod ends
Engine and Transmission
Engine: Ford 331 stroker, Eagle Specialty Products rotating assembly, COMP Cams® custom-ground camshaft, Edelbrock Victor Series mechanical water pump, Ford Performance Parts valve covers
Induction: Edelbrock Thunder Series AVS 650 cfm carburetor, Edelbrock Performer intake manifold, Ford Performance Parts air cleaner, Holley mechanical fuel pump
Ignition and Electrical: MSD Billet distributor, 6AL ignition control, Blaster coil, and Super Conductor 8.5mm ignition wires; Powermaster starter; rewound stock alternator; EZ2Wire wiring harness
Exhaust: Hedman Elite ceramic-coated shorty headers, custom 2 .5″ side-exit exhaust system by owner, Dynomax Performance race bullet mufflers
Transmission: Tremec TKO 600 5-speed manual transmission, Centerforce Dual Friction clutch and billet steel flywheel, American Powertrain White Lightning shifter, stock shift knob
Other Items: SPAL electric fan
Body: 1965 Ford Mustang Fastback
Paint: Prospray Sparkle Silver/Obsidian Schwartz
Bodywork and Paint By: Owner
Other Items: Fiberglass hood and hood scoop, Shelby GT350 front valance, 3M striping tape, hood pins
Upholstery: 1989 Mustang front seats with TMI Products seat foam and upholstery, TMI Products carpet
Upholstery By: Owner and his mother
Other Items: Rear seat delete panel and custom center console by owner, 4-point Shelby roll bar
Special Thanks To: All of my family and friends that helped me along the way.
Photography: Todd Biss Productions