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Question about Unibody construction....

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by DanIam, Jul 8, 2010.

  1. DanIam
    Joined: Apr 5, 2010
    Posts: 98


    I understand the general concept of unibody construction, especially in modern cars, but (pardon my ignorance) I don't get what it is that makes the Ford Unibody different than the previous years. Can someone please explain what the 61 f100, for example, had that the 60 f100 didn't have? Obviously they were different body styles, but what exactly was different in the construction of the cab and other body parts that made it a unibody?

    Sorry if this is a silly question, but I can't find a simple answer. I have searched the internet regarding unibody construction and have gotten plenty of broad based answers, but I can't seem to find anything specific, especially as it relates to the Ford F100.
  2. Gearhead Graphics
    Joined: Oct 4, 2008
    Posts: 3,353

    Gearhead Graphics
    from Denver Co

    Um, maybe that huge difference where the cab/box is one piece (uni).
    as in unibody...
    Aside from that I can't say frame/suspension differences were very much. In my area farmers hated them, they flexed all wrong out in the fields, doors popped open while flexing, or flexed and pinched them shut too.
  3. 61TBird
    Joined: Mar 16, 2008
    Posts: 2,640


    First off,these are not mine.I "borrowed" the pics for demonstration purposes only...

    1960,see the "gap" between the Cab and Bed?

    1961 "Uni". Notice No gap between the Cab and Bed

    The Trucks were only Unibody in that the Cab and Bed were one "body",like a Ranchero.
    It still used a separate Frame,unlike a '58-'66 Tbird that is a "true" Unibody in construction.
  4. DanIam
    Joined: Apr 5, 2010
    Posts: 98


    Wow, I feel really stupid about now. I have looked at the unibody trucks a million times, trying to figure out exactly what was going on with them, but I always focused on the cab forward. I never noticed until now that there is no gap between the cab and the box! Doh!

    OK, I'm going to go take another happy pill and call it a night! :D
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  5. havi
    Joined: Dec 30, 2008
    Posts: 1,875


    Unibody Ford pickups made it until some time in 1963.
  6. The term 'Unibody" in my mind means that the frame and overall support structure is incorporated into the body. Prior to unibody construction, there was a distinct frame component -- and the body sat on top or over the frame. (Like all the old Fords we're used to). Once unibody construction started, you could no longer separate the frame from the body -- it was all one integral piece or "unit". Yes, there can be front/rear sub-frame areas, but they are welded into the body and support structure.

    Example: 1965 Ford Mustang -- there is no separate frame . . . there is a front and rear "sub frame" . . . but they are both incorporated into the body itself. You cannot substitute one body for another . . . onto the frame that does not exist. For example, you cannot swap a coupe body . . . onto a fastback car frame - no separate frame exists in either one.

    From the info in this post, it seems that in certain Ford trucks over certain years - that the concept applied to only the body/bed. That is something that I didn't know . . . pretty interesting to say the least!
    Hopefully this makes some sense . . . it is the way that I've always thought about it.
  7. 4tford
    Joined: Aug 27, 2005
    Posts: 1,607


    The term frame tied also came about because of unibody vehicles. The front and rear sub frames would be attached by welding in a box channel that tied the front to rear, thus stiffening the body for drag racing.
  8. tailpipe47
    Joined: Mar 21, 2009
    Posts: 42


    When the pickup first came out it was called a unicab, not unibody. It was later on that people started calling them unibody. The reason they quit making them was the frames would twist on the long beds and the doors would pop open when off road like on farms. Farmers quit buying them and back then farmers and ranchers were their biggest customers.

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