How to Diamond your 1971 Mach 1
copyright Dennis Dierking/Wolfgang Kohrn 2006-2010

The DIAMOND Project - 007 Clone
by Dennis Dierking

My interest in Mustangs began in the fall of 1985 while I was still a Junior in high school.  I remember walking into my auto shop class one morning and sitting there was this Red car.  Even with not knowing for sure what kind of car it actually was, I did know that in fact, I liked the look of the car. 
As I walked around trying to take it all in, I saw the Mach 1 Mustang letters on the fender and thought, “Wow! This is a Mustang?”  From that day forward the 71 Mach 1 has been and always will be my ideal car.  In August of 1987, three months after graduation, I was able to purchase my first Mach 1. 

Shortly there after my brother-in-law asked me if I had seen the James Bond movie “Diamonds Are Forever” as it featured a Red ‘71 Mach 1 as the “Bond Car”.  
So of course I went down to the nearest video store and rented a copy.  After watching the movie numerous times and doing a bit of research I found out ironically, that the movie cars were actually prepped at a Ford dealership located in Chandler, AZ  before being sent on to Las Vegas for filming.

In 2003, I received a “Diamonds Are Forever” DVD for my birthday and after seeing the Mach 1 drive the streets of Las Vegas my desire to due a “Bond” clone car was born.  I sold my ’72 Mach 1 because it was already restored and not a candidate for a clone. The search began for a ’71.  Luckily it only took a few weeks for me to find a car that I thought would be a perfect candidate for my “007 Clone”.




The Analysis, dissasembly and body treatment

Upon getting the car home I immediately started working on it since I knew it was going to need a full restoration.  The further into the car I got I began noticing more than a few similarities to the car I remembered from high school auto shop class.  Feeling a bit nostalgic, I started to think could this be the same car?  It’s been 18 years, and what are the chances that it would still be around. 

 As I began taking apart the dash a piece of yellowed paper fell from behind the glove compartment; it was the insurance card with the guys name and address who had owned the car back in high school.  So here was proof, it was the very same car!  Which made me all the more excited to start my clone project.

Between the “Bond” car website, the movie, and a magazine article from Mustang Monthly that featured the 429-movie car; I’ve been able to piece together how the car was equipped.  The only differences between my car and the movie car will be that mine has a 4-speed transmission and no A/C.  Everything else will match the movie car, including the undercarriage.  I decided not to change the transmission because I find that a 4-speed is far more desirable and fun to drive when it comes to a muscle car.  I elected not to install A/C because the car is a factory non-A/C car and I did not want to cut the firewall.

Mechanically the engine and transmission have been redone to stock specifications. The carburetor is a Motorcraft 4300D spread bore 4-barrel with a new reproduction Ram Air setup.  The valve covers are the finned aluminum style.

 The main body was in good shape and needed little prep work.  The roof, the rear quarter panels, and the rocker panels only required minor sanding.  However the trunk lid and hood were replaced with brand new panels and the front fenders and doors were removed so they could be media blasted.  All of the drip rails and window trim pieces were polished and the rear bumper was rechromed.


The interior was completely redone to match the Vermillion Mach 1 interior of the movie car.  The floor inside the car was sanded down and repainted to the body color.  I stripped and painted all of the seat frames before installing new seat foam and the Vermilion seat covers. 
The metal frame of the dash was media blasted before installing a new wire harness that will allow for the use of a factory tachometer. The dash trim panels (bezels) were rechromed and painted black and are awaiting installation.  All of the interior panels will be painted red as well.

I was able to obtain a two spoke deluxe steering wheel and a set of the deluxe seat belts along with an original AM/FM Stereo radio.


Progress 2006-2007

Well the project is well underway. Since my car was an original 351Cleveland car with a 4 speed transmission I decided not to change it to a 429. However there
was a 351 car used in the making of the movie so this is not an incorrect replica. 

Everything else on the car will be done like the car in the movie. Interior color, body side moldings, wheels and tires etc.  

I even had an exact replica of the Nevada licence plate made with the same plate number as the one on the car in the movie.

The finishing touch will be a set of reproduction Wide Oval pinstripe whitewall tires on standard wheels with hubcaps and trim rings along with a reproduction 1971 Nevada license plate with the same number (CA52H6) as the “Bond Car”.

Remember, this car is still a work in progress.  If everything progresses well I hope to have it completed by early 2008, ok. lets correct 2009 :).

More progress 2008
I am making progress. The suspension is done and the car is back on the
ground. I have the engine and transmission installed as well. The headliner is in as well as the drip rail moldings on both sides. The dash and gauges are done and will be going back in the car soon as well.

I have the firewall insulation pad and the emergency brake assembly installed. 


One of the next things was to install the rear window and the clutch and brake pedal assemblies. 

..and 2008
Next the heater assembly will
go in and then the dash assembly. The back window is also ready to go in as the steering column and the suspension items.

II have the undercarriage done
incl. the gas tanke xcept for the driveshaft which I am still working on now. 

I have the headliner and package tray area done on the interior as well as the dash re-installed and the wiring behind the dash is also installed. I am ready to put the gauges and the radio and heater switch in now. 
All that is left on the engine is the accessories, power steering, alternator, and radiator. The toughest one there is the radiator because I want one with the correct part number stamped into it and the correct Ford brass tanks.
The finishing touches 2009  
I had some time off during the winter holidays and was able to get some more work done on the car:
Worked on the door
panels and the windshield. I have installed the door glass and once the adjustments are finished on the glass I will install the door panels. 

got the body side molding on finally. I was a little nervous about installing the pieces on the doors because there were no weld studs on them like there would have been on cars equipped with the molding from the factory. The molding clips are held on by a small stud that sticks out from the door. If you don't have the weld studs you have to drill a hole with a 1/8 drill bit and use a blind rivet and rivet the clips on.
The tricky part is getting all six holes drilled in a straight line. I
have been dreading this but I finally pushed myself to get it done and I am actually happy with the results as the molding on the door lines up nicely with the molding on the quarter panel and the fender. 

put the taillights and honey comb panel on the rear as well as
the stripe on the trunk lid and the Mach 1 letters on the fenders and trunk lid. The front bumper went on along with the front valance panel.

Power Steering components before and after restoration

March 2009:
I should have the correct date coded windshield in a week or two.  I still am trying to find a correct original radiator.  Once I have that I will be able to get the car running.  That is about the only thing remaining mechanically.  

The taillight panel blackout photo shows the correct paint applied so that the body color does not show on the ends of the honeycomb panel and around the gas cap.  The sealer has also been applied to the taillight panel as shown in the factory assembly manual.  

The front end of the car is complete and now even has a replica of the Nevada license plate like the car in the Diamonds are forever movie.  

The outside of the car is complete except for reproduction tires.  I may have sent some of the photos to you before so sorry if there are duplicates.

The next photos I send will probably be of the completed car. I am finally seeing the light at the end of the long tunnel! 

Headlight assembly installed

Rear underlayment put in place

When it comes to the decals you can see the light at the end of the tunnel like Dennis did.

Water protection sheets installed..

and finally properly finished on the i nside

The doors are aligned 

Rear end detailing

Carpet underlayment for road noise reduction

The finished front grille assembly with the replicated movie licence plate

The finished rear end

 The car will appear finally in 2010 on the show circuits as one of the best replicas around.

2010 Dennis made it in time- 
Pictures of the finished car soon up here on Ponysite

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