Saturday, May 14, 2011

Crown Victoria Suspension Installation

I worked today at installing the Crown Victoria suspension crossmember in the pickup. The plan is to run the bolts through from the bottom to 3/4" bar stock on top of the frame rail. The factory system on the Crown Victoria wasn't quite this stout, but it's ok to overbuild a little. I may also box the frame around the crossmember to give it a little more support since it's the attaching point for the engine and the whole of the front suspension. There are also crush tubes around the bolts. My Dad is a machinist, so he made the parts for me out of some steel I bought at Metal By The Foot. I told him the wrong size on the rear crush tubes, so I'll have to take them back up to the shop and face a little off of them to get them to slide easily under the rails.

After this crossmember was installed, the frame became so much more rigid. I need to fabricate a mount for the trailing section of the lower control arms and apparently I've lost one of the nuts that holds screws onto the bolts on top of the crossmember.

Monday, May 2, 2011

Frame Clean and Assembled

Tonight after work, I blasted the last couple crossmembers clean and put the frame together loosely on the driveway to test the fit. I didn't have a whole lot of time, but I didn't have too much to do either.
I am planning to prime it disassembled to protect the crevices from rust and then paint it as an assembled unit.
There are a couple small areas left to repair before priming. I also plan to get the front Crown Victoria crossmember completely test fit before priming the frame. There's a lot of work left to do, but it's nice to see a little visible progress.

Saturday, April 30, 2011

Almost done Sandblasting

Here's the intake sitting on the engine completing the fuel system. As I mentioned in a previous post, I am going to use the MSD controller. When the frame is done, I'll have to fab up a stand and fire this thing up.

This is where I ran out of blast media, so the rear end is half done. The guy swore to me that I should go with a coarse media instead. It was terrible, so I've postponed the rest of the blasting until I can get more of the fine media. I also finished up all the frame crossmembers except for one I have to replace.
Here, I'm doing some electrolysis to cut through some of the more pronounced rust scale. It's fun, but it's not fast.
Here's the stuff for today.

Friday, April 1, 2011

New Intake and Radiator arrives today

I got the intake in from Fedex. It looks pretty good as it should given it's cost. It's also not well suited to a street engine, but it's the only viable option I have to go with a carburetor. I mocked it all up on the kitchen table to get a feel for what it'll look like on the finished engine. I added the new carburetor that's been sitting around for about a year now waiting for an engine to feed. The intake was made by Sullivan but has recently been discontinued. There is also a couple new sets of wiring that came in today too. The rest of the wiring I ordered has been backordered.

I also got the radiator in. It is debatable whether or not it's really a trade up from the aluminum ones for sale. In all the pictures it looks like the original just using plastic tanks. This one has all sorts of extra ribbing on it. It will work fine for now, but eventually, I'll be shopping for another radiator.

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Finished Main Rail Blasting

Tonight after work, I finished the blasting of the two main rails. I have a few places to make quick little repairs and then it's off to painting for them. As far as the rest of the pieces of the frame, I'm going to drop them off with a blaster to finish. I do not have time to do them.

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Final Frame disassembly

I gave in to the concept of rebuilding the frame after it's disassembled. It was getting to complicated to leave the rear assembled and I wanted to move things along. So today, I completely separated the ladders from the main rails. Now, I can get into all the places Claycomo never painted that have rusted with time. By the end of the day tomorrow, I hope to have the main rails completely sandblasted and ready for paint. I will also be making plans to get the paint needed to finish the rails properly. The paint guy I trust recommended a DTM Urethane primer and chassis black. I'm going to look into a urethane topcoat as well in place of the chassis black. If I can flatten a urethane topcoat enough that it's not obscenely shiny, I'll go with it.

Thursday, January 6, 2011

More Sandblasting

I got some pics of the frame sandblasting I did tonight before dark. It came out prety good. The rails are completely free of paint and rust all the way back to the first crossmember I haven't removed yet. Dust settled on the rear sections that I hadn't blasted yet making it look clean. I found out that I can run a couple bags through the blaster before the compressor heats up and starts pumping water into the mix. I haven't tried to dry out the air supply yet, but when I do, it's certain to work a whole lot faster and better. The frame is clean inside outside upside down. I'm happy with the results. In the coming days I'll be cleaning up the crossmembers I removed and figuring out what kind of paint I'm going to go with. I decided to finish the front of the frame rails before taking the rear sections apart. It's probably unnecessary, but I want to make sure I get the rails back together straight and true.

Sandblasting in the dark with no pics

Yesterday in the late afternoon and until dark, I sandblasted the frame. I was snapping pictures like a madman. If it wasn't for the cracked LCD on the garage camera, I might have also known that I had no memory card in the camera saving the pictures. I hope to have a chance to do some more blasting after work tonight.

Monday, January 3, 2011


I had a little time this evening to work on preparing the patch panels. The donor cab has an issue where the rear window mounts. Also, the dash is bad and the cowl is dented. As for tonight, I removed the back window support from the original cab and removed the dash panel from the section I cut out of the original cab. There are a lot of welds holding the dash in place. It is a lot of work to remove, but nice to have my unmolested dash in the finished product rather than fixing up the one that was botched up for a radio. I tried to do some cleaning on the frame but I gave up. I'll be blasting it on the driveway rather than trying to clean it up with the flap wheels.
With the dash removed:

Monday, December 27, 2010

Using the reproduction core support

I got a chance to get a little work done Sunday on the pickup. There is no core support reproduced for the 65-66 2wd F100 pickups, but it doesn't take too long to make the 61-64 reproduction work.

The primary difference between the 61-64 and the 65-66 is the lack of support brackets for the inner fenders on the earlier trucks. Then, Ford changed the radiator mounts for 1966. Do what you want with the radiator support brackets. If they stay, buy a 65 radiator. Remove them and buy a 66 radiator.
First, to make it fit, you have to remove this bracket shown below:
It should be stubbier like this one:
If you are using this and want to keep the 65 style radiator mounts, you'll have to keep the original bracket and swap it over.

Then, I drilled out the spot welds holding the inner fender bracket to the original support. Usually, these are good enough to reuse. If it's really bad, it wouldn't take much to fabricate them out of some angled steel using the original as a pattern.

Next, I had to mock up the front end to find correct placement of the inner fenders:

I took an awl and scratched deep into the core support so that after removing the black primer from the support for welding, I'd still be able to find it.
I used a cupped wire wheel to clean off the primer and shot it with weld through primer.

Then, using the holes made for cleaning off the spot welds, I plug welded the brackets to the support.
You can see in that picture above that I have completely removed the 65 style radiator mount leaving holes where I drilled out the spot welds. I'll fill them in with the MIG for a finished final installation.
For my restoration, it's a lot better to replace a panel than to stitch a rusty old core support back together or pay a mint for a rust-free original only to find out it is rusty. I'm going to have the support blasted clean of the EDP to match the rest of the metal for finishing.