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Customs '61 Falcon Wagon Mild One...

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by thunderbirdesq, Nov 15, 2011.

  1. thunderbirdesq
    Joined: Feb 15, 2006
    Posts: 6,894

    thunderbirdesq
    Member

    Hi fellas, I'm gonna do a little documentation of the customization of my 61 wag here, hope you all enjoy it. Nothing too crazy, shaved clean, a static lowering job, a flaked/panel painted roof and dash, kickstand twice pipes, and a plain black pleated interior.
    I picked the car up in Niagara Falls, the PO was gonna build a gasser but couldn't bring himself to cut it up so he started restoring it. Luckily, he's a retired mechanic and knew what he was doing. He rebuilt the head, the transmission, installed new ball joints, gave it a complete brake job and smoothed out the body a bit. This is probably the nicest old car I've ever started with. The body is NEARLY perfect, really straight and solid. It came with a set of these cool old chrome slots too. They're not in great shape, but will do for now... I can't imagine what the cost to rechrome them would be.
    Anyhow...
    Here she is when I brought her home, sittin sky high...
    [​IMG]
    1.5 coils cut from the front springs, I replaced the rest of the worn front end components while I had the springs out. I also cut the bumpstops down and raised the upper shock mounts 1".
    [​IMG]
    Tires... I think it's official... 185-80r13's are unavailable at less than $150 each. I looked for two weeks, couldn't find any and I am not going to spend $700 on tires for $2500 car. I settled for a set of 175-80r13's from tireseasy.com, for $68 apiece shipped I can live with the 2.5% diameter difference.
    Nothing like new shoes for motivation!
    [​IMG]
    Sooo, the rear was still sitting way up in the stratosphere... I went to my local spring shop and had them bend me up a set of 9" long ubolts from 7/16" rod (stock falcon bolts are 3/8"). Cost was $28. Then I welded up a set of 3" blocks from some 2x3 box tubing scraps, installed an allen head bolt in one side and drilled a 1/2" hole in the other. Pulled the rear out, cleaned it up, and set it back in with the blocks and new ubolts. Of course the exhaust had to be rerouted and the bumpstops cut down. The PO also installed a brand new set of air shocks on the rear, they will come in handy if I ever need to haul anything heavier than a loaf of bread...
    [​IMG]
    That's where I am so far, I'll update the thread as progress continues. I have to get the exhaust taken care of soon, it's got a glasspack on the stock manifold and it sounds like a honda with a fart-can goin down the road, drivin' me nuts! When I lowered it, I just cut the pipe and moved the muffler up in front of the rear axle... consequently, the muffler is too low and drags whenever I run over anything larger than a pebble. Plans are to split the manifold 2 and 4 and run twice pipes out to shorty kickstand lake pipes along the rear quarter like mini-bellfower tips. I had a custom early econoline with the 4 n 2 split and it was the cat's azz!
     
  2. Model A John
    Joined: Apr 24, 2008
    Posts: 1,766

    Model A John
    Member
    from wichita ks

    Love those Falcon wagons. Have fun with it!
     
  3. gasolinescream
    Joined: Sep 7, 2010
    Posts: 614

    gasolinescream
    Member

    Sitting very nice!! Cool ride for a great price, love those long-roofs.


    Happy cruising
     
  4. Toyghoul
    Joined: Jul 21, 2002
    Posts: 564

    Toyghoul
    Member
    from SPOKANE


  5. deadendcruiser
    Joined: Jul 18, 2007
    Posts: 691

    deadendcruiser
    Member

    That roof does cry for a panel job. Can't wait to see updates.
     
  6. I would say it was a wise choice not going gasser.
     
  7. Phillips
    Joined: Oct 26, 2010
    Posts: 1,291

    Phillips
    Member

    Lookin' great already.
     
  8. JRussell
    Joined: Nov 21, 2003
    Posts: 491

    JRussell
    Member

    This build is eerily the same as my comet...
     
    Last edited: Nov 15, 2011
  9. thunderbirdesq
    Joined: Feb 15, 2006
    Posts: 6,894

    thunderbirdesq
    Member

    thanks fellas...

    Great minds think alike, eh?:D
     
  10. need louvers ?
    Joined: Nov 20, 2008
    Posts: 12,906

    need louvers ?
    Member

    Almost got the girlfriends together. Yours is looking great!
     

    Attached Files:

  11. Here's your twin..

    Rick
     

    Attached Files:

  12. Theo Douglas
    Joined: Nov 20, 2002
    Posts: 807

    Theo Douglas
    Member

    Very nice! Remember, lower is always better. (My free advice.) Keep going on it.
     
  13. 53woody
    Joined: Sep 29, 2010
    Posts: 152

    53woody
    Member

    Andy Nice to see a new project in your driveway. I'll be watching your progress. Bruce :cool:
     
  14. ratrodder34
    Joined: Dec 28, 2007
    Posts: 2,219

    ratrodder34
    Member
    from Irvine,ky.

    Stance is great..............
     
  15. Phillips
    Joined: Oct 26, 2010
    Posts: 1,291

    Phillips
    Member

    4 bolt truspokes? Way cool. Since the wagon appears to be "hers" is the Ranchero in the background yours?
     
  16. thunderbirdesq
    Joined: Feb 15, 2006
    Posts: 6,894

    thunderbirdesq
    Member

    Killer... >>LOVE<< the spokes!
     
  17. Iron Dog
    Joined: Oct 28, 2011
    Posts: 267

    Iron Dog
    Member
    from Minnesota

    Oh man, that brings me back. My family (and now me) has owned a weekly newspaper in northern Minnesota since 1880, and when I was working there in high school, my father bought a powder blue Falcon Ranch Wagon, and had painted in huge letters on both sides "Norman County Index - The Paper With Lots of Local Pictures". Try get away with anything in a small town with that ride! He later sold it to one of his employees, and for several months was still getting calls about his kid driving crazy, however then I could say "who me?" and he believed me.
     
  18. need louvers ?
    Joined: Nov 20, 2008
    Posts: 12,906

    need louvers ?
    Member

    Well... Errr... Yep! See, she had always looked at my '62 Sports roof falcon sitting in the corner waiting for it's turn at life anew, and had noticed a friends Ranchero. One evening she yells at me from across the house to come look at Craig's list. She had found a '62 Ranchero as far across this huge town as she could, and was dead set on looking at it. The seller was asking 2000.00, she batted her eyes and it came home against my will for 1000.00. The owner threw in every new and N.O.S. part that could be needed, so it turned out a pretty good deal. I spent a few months between customers replacing floor pans and adapting a T-50 B.W. trans to the rebuilt 170, when out of the clear blue sky one evening she yelled across the house and told me to come look at Craig's list...(you'll have to imagine her outrageous Chinese accent for your self!) Seems she saw a wagon at the farthest other corner across this huge town and decided that it would suite her and our dogs needs much better! So, between customers projects this summer I have replaced floor pans, Painted and detailed a freshly rebuilt 200/ C4 combo, did Scarebird front discs, and found and gifted the set of 4 lug Tru-spokes. Almost ready to run with this one, then the Ranchero gets on the road with the 170, a three ICT Weber set up, and a set of four lug 14" U.S.Indy slot mags as my hood pickup and drop off vehicle.... Wheh, sorry for the novel!
     
  19. Rocket Sled
    Joined: Jan 16, 2005
    Posts: 279

    Rocket Sled
    Member
    from Hanover PA

    Great start! Give me motivation to get rolling on mine!
     
  20. JeffreyJames
    Joined: Jun 13, 2007
    Posts: 16,612

    JeffreyJames
    Member
    from SUGAR CITY

    Awesome!!! Andy's back on the wagon...or off. I think off is more fun but I've always been on so I'm not sure. Anyways yeah dude attack!!!
     
  21. thunderbirdesq
    Joined: Feb 15, 2006
    Posts: 6,894

    thunderbirdesq
    Member

    YOU, sir, have a pm!;)
     
  22. Tomkat39
    Joined: Mar 14, 2010
    Posts: 91

    Tomkat39
    Member

    Thanks for the info. I'm working on 60 comet wagon we just got, want to lower as well. Like the way your 61 sets. Was wondering how much to cut off of coils.
     

    Attached Files:

  23. thunderbirdesq
    Joined: Feb 15, 2006
    Posts: 6,894

    thunderbirdesq
    Member

    Cool Comet!

    I've heard of some guys cutting 2 full coils, but at full suspension drop, at least on this car, if I cut 2 I easily could slip the coils in and out by hand with no compressor. I wanted a little bit of interference there in case she ever gets airborne.:D;) Also I think I would have front tire rubbing issues with any more drop as well, not sure if these wheels have the stock offset but they're pretty close... 1.5 coils it is. You'll definitely need to chop the bumpstops and raise the upper shock mounts about an inch or you'll smash the shocks and mounts in short order. Good luck!:cool:
     
  24. ynottayblock
    Joined: Dec 23, 2005
    Posts: 1,954

    ynottayblock
    Member

    looking good so far Andy
     
  25. bonez
    Joined: Jul 16, 2007
    Posts: 3,493

    bonez
    Member
    from Slow lane

    Loveley! the stance is perfect.
    Whats the deal w/ the grille? Is it an Aussie spec item?
    And i like the 4lug Trus too, infact i might have found a set for my project and cant wait to get'em.
    You can lok for a few nice 4lug mags too if you care. Theres Cragars, Rockets, Keystones, Star Wires, basically all of the classic 70s lowrider wheels. Not easy to find, except the cragrs that are more common, but all worth the hassle.
     
  26. von zipper
    Joined: Nov 23, 2008
    Posts: 1,014

    von zipper
    Member

    Nice wagon! Going with the Cragars on my 63 Ranch! Just shopping for tires now! Love these little birds!:D
     
  27. need louvers ?
    Joined: Nov 20, 2008
    Posts: 12,906

    need louvers ?
    Member

    I'm diggin' the Tru-spokes big time. Best part is they were N.O.S. and cheap too! Win, Win, Win! I'd love to find some astros like yours Thunderbirdesq for the Ranchero though.
     
  28. greg ducato
    Joined: Oct 19, 2011
    Posts: 29

    greg ducato
    Member

    Very cool, I love those Falcon wagons
     
  29. jreeder41
    Joined: Jul 23, 2009
    Posts: 477

    jreeder41
    Member

    Lookin good Andy!
     
  30. motoandy
    Joined: Sep 19, 2007
    Posts: 3,292

    motoandy
    Member
    from MB, SC

    Cool Ride. Do you need a 170 air cleaner for it? I have one left over from my ride. PM me if you do.

    This was mine.
     

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