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Stock Ford Parts – Is it Stock? It is Really?

When you are beginning your stock project for your vintage Ford Mustang, it helps to have some direction and know how to identify stock parts. It is possible to get New Old Stock (NOS) parts for your Ford Mustang, but you do need to know how to spot them so that you are not swindled. NOS parts means that the part or accessory is original and has never been used. NOS parts usually come from old stockpiles of dealers and they can be rather pricey in certain forums. However, there are scam artists so it is important to understand not only the criteria that qualify parts as NOS and some helpful hints.

Stock Ford Parts – Is it Stock? It is Really? The name, NOS, or New Old Stock, in itself tells you what criteria must be met in order for the part to qualify as NOS.

New – This means that the part or accessory is new, thus, never used. Once it has been installed in a vehicle or put to use, the part is no longer NOS. When it is no longer NOS, it should be referred to in the past tense so as to avoid any misunderstanding as to the legitimacy of the part.

Old – This means that the part or accessory is the same age or equivalent vintage or the vehicle for which it is intended. Some parts for some vehicles are still in production and are readily available. Such parts and accessories do not qualify as being NOS.

Stock – This term is rather controversial. In its most literal sense, NOS means that the part is an Original Equipment Manufacture (OEM) part. Being an OEM part means that when the car was new the part would have been available. However, there are differing opinions on just what constitutes OEM parts.

So, how do you spot the genuine article? There are a few things that you can look for when picking up NOS parts:

    • Get a good idea of what the parts that you need actually look like so that you can pick up on little cues that would indicate the part’s age.
    • Get a good idea of what finishes the parts should have on them. It is a common practice among scam artists to repaint parts and pass them off as NOS.
    • Most NOS parts will still be in their original packaging, box, or wrapper. This is not always the case, but more often than not, it is.
    • Look for signs of use on the part. This differs from shelf wear that sometimes appears on NOS parts that have been handled and this is considered acceptable wear.
  • Look for signs that the part has been spray-painted or bead blasted. No part would leave a factory with a bead blasted finished which is characterized by a roughened texture that is very fine and almost gritty. Some parts, such as those that contain rubber, do not necessarily age well and you may do better to restore an original part.

This should give you an idea of what to look for when you are interested in picking up some NOS parts. If you are doing resto work on your Stang and you want to go all stock, you would also do well to pick up copies of the different mail order catalogs because many NOS parts sold at auctions and swaps are purchased via mail order catalogs and the price is inflated. Save yourself the money.




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