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Hagerty Employee

Project Valentino: The restomod that actually added vent windows

Before the era of widespread air-conditioning and that whole science says smoking causes cancer thing, vent windows were a common sight on new cars. These windows—small pieces of openable glass in a car’s front door, offering a ready burst of fresh air—were so prevalent that vent-window delete kits are now commonly used when restoring vehicles. (No, really. Google it. That search will prepare you for the level of nonsense you’re about to behold.)


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Hagerty Employee

Aww man, that is definitely a passion project!!

Pit Crew

vinyl graphics job shops for automotive aftermarket use is darn near an industry unto itself.  Best part is the quality and pricing is better than OEM.  You say you already have digital files (hopefully in a commonly used industry format)?  Piece of wedding cake.  I'm not from Houston, but assuming you are where the car is, just ask around or chase down any vehicle you see unique graphics applied to (in my neck of the woods, the young contractors LOVE that stuff).  Still no joy?  PM me and I'll share contact info for my quality-first recommendations.

Community Manager

Thank you very much for your offer. I might take you up on that, if the restoration shop runs into issues. 

Intermediate Driver

That's another first for me. I had no idea power dropping vent windows existed. Which strikes me as curious since I always thought the benefit of vent windows was that you could aim it where you wanted it to. I was born in '78 so vent windows were all but gone when I reached the age to be interested in cars. Though oddly my first car, the Land Ark, possessed(s) them - and that means I've never not had vent windows in my fleet.


I have to say, I am starting to get really excited for you. I know you have a long way to go but getting past paint is a huge step.

Every time I see a pre 2000 Lincoln now I think of you. There's an 87 Conti for sale on my local Craigslist. It apparently ran when parked - so it's got that going for it.

Community Manager

First off I apologize for being a bad influence on you. Maybe I will be a terrible influence on you and you'll buy one. 🙂 


While I haven't spent much time with the Conti's vent windows, the ones in the Town Car shoot air in the general area where you need it, and you tweak the intensity via how much you roll them down. The intensity factor is also what makes the externally adjustable vent windows so good, I reckon it's more important than where the turned glass routes air inside the cabin.  With that in mind, there really isn't a big difference between the two designs. 


And thanks for your kind words about the project, as it definitely makes me feel a little more happy and a little less nervous! 


My guess is that cars will come and go, but you'll keep this one. It's the perfect sleeper for that fedora wearing retiree. 

Community Manager

Yeah this is the last one I sell before I go off to the big junkyard in the sky!


Funny, I did the same thing in my Porsche, I backdated wing windows in my 71 911ST Hotrod from a 68 911. With no A/C it can get quite toasty, it's nice to have directed blast of air on a sweltering day. I don't think I've ever seen anyone else do it.


Community Manager

Wow, you have great taste and yes, you are the only other person I know that has done this!  

Advanced Driver

I feel you! I once,  while restoring a replacement Escort, swapped doors from a Mercury Lynx onto  it specifically for the swing out vent windows! This is the first article I've seen on your project, and I'm looking forward to seeing the completion, Good Luck!  🙂

Community Manager

Oh wow, now I know two people (you and @Rob-Abbott) who have done the vent window swap!  Your Escort sounds like a cool project, and I am glad to hear you enjoyed this article! There will be more to come in the coming weeks. 



Advanced Driver

Well done, my friend!

Community Manager

Thanks a bunch, @drjim!!!


I love your semi-Quixotic project and I love your well-crafted writing style (you even use the Oxford comma).  Hope to read more about this car.

Community Manager

More to come for sure, and using the Oxford comma is something you can speak to senior management about if it really bothers you. 


Great "out of the norm" project, and terrific article. I am a former smoker who enjoys vent windows. I thought it was neat that my '65 Galaxie has a separate window crank for the vent windows. And during the lockdown last spring, I replaced the non locking driver side vent, the beltline weather-stripping, and converted my instrument cluster to L.E.D. I think the power vents on your Valentino are GRRRREAAAT!
Community Manager

You're a good man, thank you for your kind words.  Let's hope they work as well as they did on the donor car (when it last ran 10+ years ago!) 


My slightly arthritic ’83 Continental Mark VI Signature Series (gussied-up Town Car with headlight covers, shark gills, and Continental-kit trunk bulge) has those vent windows, and I love them. At least they work, unlike the AC, cruise control, and light covers... The little triangular vents remind me of all my family’s cars of the 1960s through 1980s — VWs, Toyotas, Chevy Nova and three Malibu wagons, even a Colony Park wagon — that also had (usually manual) vent windows, which we insisted on using to cut the thick pall of smoke from my mother’s Benson and Hedges 100s. I get your obsession! I feel for you, man, but I do get it— Good luck with the Valentino. Can’t wait for your next Malaise Moment update. Fly your freak flag high!
Community Manager

The flag will fly even prouder thanks to your kind words! 

New Driver

I’m loving this project because I, fortunately, have a 1987 Lincoln Continental Givenchy that’s in almost showroom condition, that’s 34 years old so there’s probably some dust on the chassis somewhere.

I bought it because I wanted something that you wouldn’t see everyday. Bonus is that it’s a Fox Body. A couple of years ago my Foxy Lincoln was invited to attend the Ford Nations in Carlisle PA as one of the featured Fox Body Cars. There were only two Fox Lincoln’s there, mine and a rolling parts car.

So far any “improvements have been limited to bolt on things, 17” Mustang rims, SS 2.75” exhaust, but I’m thinking of a Cyote engine swap, suspension upgrades ( but I still like my original air bags) and interior changes to Mustang bucket seats front and back. I’ve also wondered if it’s easily possible to replace the dash from the digital Lincolns to a dash and instruments from a Fox Mustang GT?

Lots of ideas but not much cash or skills to pull it off...hence the need for more cash.

There is so much potential in these cars as a comfortable, rare sleeper.

Cheers, from Port Colborne Ontario.
Community Manager

Thanks for chiming in!  If you like the stock air ride suspension you can go ahead and get ADDCO swaybars for it and leave it alone. There was a time when better shocks were available (Koni and Bilstein) but those days are long, long gone.  Best of luck with your Givenchy!