The Pantera Place
"Your de Tomaso Connection"
The Second Year With #1887
Today, June 12, 2000 is the second anniversary of my Pantera purchase. The following are my thoughts for those of you who are considering a Pantera purchase.
Click image to viewAfter two years of driving around in the Pantera my enthusiasm for the car continues to increase. I expounded about the virtues of Pantera ownership in my last year update so I will not cover it again.I havenít accomplished as much work this year as last year, but the replacement of the front valance was the biggest single cost item on my "to do" list. I had the lower front valance replaced along with the front cross member and repaired the front end of the diver's side front frame rail. The project took over three months to complete (over 80 hours of billable shop time). I have the details of the valance project posted in the technical section. The valance project was expensive but almost every Pantera I have seen needs a new valance, so it was money well spent.I completed the installation of new polyurethane graphite suspension bushings in the front A arms, new front lower ball joints, front brake pads, repacked the front wheel bearings (I bought new bearings but did'nt need them) installed the new front Koni shocks, re-cored the radiator, replaced the driverís side power window switch, installed a new alternator, replaced the seals in the clutch slave cylinder, replaced the right and left back marker light housings, changed the plugs, cap and rotor, checked the points and found some very nice and original GT5-S Vitaloni mirrors. I also found some stock Campy wheels. I'm probably not going to put the wheels on the car unless I can find some really nice 10" wide back Campys.
After about eight months I gave up on the keeping the storage unit for the Pantera. It seems that I always wanted to keep the Pantera at home so my 300ZX ended up spending most of its time in the storage unit. So now the Maxama is parked outside so the ZX and Pantera can be in the garage. What we need is a four car garage!During the next year I plan to tackle the back suspension and replace the A arm bushings, install the new back Koni shocks, check out the wheel bearings and half shafts. This project has been delayed because a Pantera buddy has designed a really cool solution for installing roller wheel bearings in the up-rights that do not require modification of the up-rights. I have been waiting for his prototype to be completed and tested so I can install the system in my car.
One of the highlights of the year was receiving a really nice letter from the first owner of the car, Dr. Don Rhinehart of Oklahoma City, Oklahoma. His letter helped tie together some of the carís history.In summary, the Pantera just gets better each year and the ownership of the car continues to be a lot of fun!