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  #1  
Old 08-30-2011, 02:05 AM
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Sharing my 56 F100 project....

I decided to put up a thread involving my project just because I have been so inspired by the rest of the projects that others have shared. I really enjoyed reading them and seeing the progress and ideas and whatnot used. Really been good therapy to keep me going on mine. i usually wouldn't have time to sit and do this but since my knee is trashed once again, might as well.

The truck started out actually as my dad's purchase but it quickly became too much for him to deal with and he wanted something much further along... more or less one that was done. So i agreed to take over the project from him so he could go buy another truck. Not like I needed yet another project, but I do have a soft spot for these trucks and had an empty feeling after having to sell my '55 a couple years ago.

Pretty much everything in the truck needed ripped out and redone. Rear axle was a heinz-57 of parts and the engine poorly mounted (and no good to boot) Body is in pretty decent shape, minor rust in all the common spots, but nothing too major. Solid floors and roof and decent bolt-on sheetmetal. Started this project the end of Feb '11 in hopes to have it on the road in a month or so... ha.. that was wishful thinking!! My goal was jus tto get it safely and reliably running and driving and enjoy it a bit this summer. Well my summer is quickly running out!! I figured I'd get it to that point, fix or change what i didn't like, tear it all down again, for paint and body work later on. Mainly as I don't have the money to paint it now!! But it'd be nice to enjoy it.

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Click the image to open in full size.

Had to replace the rear axle. Replaced with a good used '68 F100 axle. Still searching for the proper shock/mounting plates so I can re-connect the shocks. May order brackets from MF.
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After the axle change I whent aheat and went through the entire brake system, rebuilt the m/c and all new wheel cyls, shoes, and whatnot. Brakes are soild now!

Steering was next. For whatever reason, the PO WELDED the aftermarket steering wheel to the stock steering shaft! WTH! Now with the shaft distroyed seemed like a good time to upgrade to the Toyota conversion. Bought my kit from MF and the used box from E-Bay.
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Installed the rebuilt drag link assy.
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After yarding out the engine I realized that the PO didn't do the best nor safest job on mounting the FE. I sat crooked, tilted too much, and clock a bit in the engine bay. You didn't notice this until you looked at from the back while underneath it.(the clocked part) So I easily wiped all the crap bracktry off with a 5lb sledge hammer, and a little precice cuting on the 3-4 welds that actually did hold a bit. Got me a Trans-dapt FE cross member kit from Summit racing and got the mounts that match at NAPA (cheaper than Trans-Dapts at Summit) Did a little modification to the crossmember to tie the upper and lower parts of the channel together for a little extra strength.
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Installed it into the trucks chassis. I didn't run the full length of the crosmember with the angle because i needed to leave access for getting to the brake line.
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Old 08-30-2011, 02:20 AM
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Continuing on... keep in mind I started this mess back at the end of Feburary...lol
Now to the engine... If you were to pour water in, it'd come out the oil pan... NOT GOOD!!
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Rather than mess with a questionable mess I had another good used 390 laying around from another abandoned project. Made sure it ran, tore it down, threw a gasket set, cam, lifters, timing chain, and oil pump at it and repainted it.
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Reassembled and repainted and ready to install.
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Now next came the tranny. An FMX came with the truck. PO said it was rebuilt and belonged to this truck. Fat chance, it may have been rebuilt, but because the converter was wrong, it may have never been for this truck. I had used a Trans-Dapt crossmember for the F100s to mount it.
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So I had an good used C6 from a '73 F100 I scrapped moons ago that became the replacement. Poped the pan to inspect and clean as a whistle! NICE! Resealed all external seals, buttoned up and stuffed into the truck. bolted up in the exact same place as the C6 did!! SCORE!
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Click the image to open in full size.

Now I needed to prep and paint the firewall. Had to weld up extra holes and hammer/dolly others that were a bit messed up. Keep in mind, just a quicky as I intend to tear all done at a later time to paint it all. Will also need to get some noce rust-free inner fenders too. Another PO hack job...
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Click the image to open in full size.

Now to drop in the refreshened engine and install the C6 for the last time.
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Now I had to build some tranny lines. I prefer to do these myself as I like to route them where I want them to go. Started out with 2- 60" straight sections of 5/16" stainless line.
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Took me a little while to get the 1st one done(2nd one is always easier!) but i think it looks/works pretty good.

While I was at it, I bent up a fuel line since i got the P/S stuff cleaned up and ready to bolt on.
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Old 08-30-2011, 02:50 AM
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Now onto the Radiator assembly... The radiator was another E-bay score, all aluminum 3-row unit. However it only came with the inlet/outlets in that configuration and size. Eh, for the price, I'd make it work. Its a Champion Cooling Systems' Pro Series #CC5356. First was to build some kinda brackets for the electric fan. I wasn't about to hold it to this radiator with 4 stupid plastic straps and risk ruining the fins of the radiator. The fan I got is a Hayden 16" Rapid Cool #3700. See if it does the job. Also picked up a Hayden thermostat control #3653 to go with it.

Started with 1/4 chunks of plywood as spacers and just centered the fan withing the core. Nothing on the engine will interfere with where I'm mounting it.
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Using 1" x 1/8" strap I started making the brackets. I started with a 5' stick.
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Now added vertical support bars.
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Now mocked up on the radiator.
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I wanted a little more space between the fan and the core itself, as I didn't want it rubbing on the cores or fins. So I decided to add a 1/4" spacer using 1"x1/4" strap and cut small pieces for each leg and welded them on.
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Click the image to open in full size.
Now here it is all pained up, fianlly installed also adding an overflow can and the thermostatic fan control.
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Got it installed into the truck. Had to do a bit of a hose hunt but finally located hoses that almost look as if they were meant to be there! I needed the lower hose to drop a bit out of the way to clear the v-belt for the power steering. A tricky hose to find.
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Click the image to open in full size.

With that all out of the way, it was time to get that steering column installed. I picked up a GM 30" Column shift tilt column off of e-Bay. It's a Flaming River knockoff from an outfit called Gearhead Enterprises. It may not be the exact quality of Flaming River's units, but it gets the job done within my budget. I cut 1/2" off the DD shaft to get the joint as close to the column as possible thus allowing the shift lever to clear the floorboard as much as possible. I used a 4.5" drop on the column too.
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And that's about were I have let off. Now that my knee is really messed up and surgery may be in the works, I'm not sure when i be able to get back to it. Still need to get a firewall insulator pad, put the heater back together and install it, re-wire the whole truck, come up with some sort of shift linkage, get the engine running and broke-in, get the seat and rest of interior back together, fluch out the fuel tank..... and probably a host of other odds and ends.
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  #4  
Old 08-30-2011, 08:30 PM
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Dano; thanks for posting your progress, nice work! Keeps me inspired. Good luck on your surgery. And keep the pictures of the truck progress coming.
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  #5  
Old 08-30-2011, 09:25 PM
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Very clean work!
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  #6  
Old 08-31-2011, 03:03 AM
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Thanks guys, will do.
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Old 08-31-2011, 06:11 AM
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Great pics. Love the progress. That is going to be a real sweet truck!!!!!!!
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Old 08-31-2011, 07:36 AM
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Hey Dano,
That looks great!! You've got some mad skills - I like the just make it happen approach. If you just get your knee scoped - pretty fast recovery time & not a lot of swelling. (My neighbor just got his done - & we played golf within 2 weeks).

I've got the exact same steering column from Gearhead. What is the round shiny cylindrical looking thing on the side of your radiator?

Ben in Austin
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Old 08-31-2011, 01:25 PM
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Thanks for sharing, some nice work going on. Brings back memories ;o)
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Old 08-31-2011, 01:39 PM
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great work, your lucky the truck was in the family. maybe someday we will see each other during a cruise..
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Old 08-31-2011, 02:17 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ben73058 View Post
Hey Dano,
That looks great!! You've got some mad skills - I like the just make it happen approach. If you just get your knee scoped - pretty fast recovery time & not a lot of swelling. (My neighbor just got his done - & we played golf within 2 weeks).

I've got the exact same steering column from Gearhead. What is the round shiny cylindrical looking thing on the side of your radiator?

Ben in Austin
...Ben I would say it's an overflow recovery tank. A wise addition. Bill
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Old 08-31-2011, 02:23 PM
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Nice! I wish I had another project. Nice overflow tube too. Jag
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Old 08-31-2011, 03:03 PM
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Thanks guys I do appreciate it! I too hope to inspire others to 'at least' do a little something on thier trucks.
That cylinder is a coolant recovery tank... just like Jags! Wasn't gonna run one at first but then dad brought that one over and said he wasn't gonna use it and gave it to me. I knew right where to mount that! Really neat little recovery tube, the pics make it look nicer than it is, it's a little scratched up, but looks good still.

WOW Look at that engine bay of Jags'! That is beautiful! Nice and clean with lots of detail! I like it.

Had my MRI yesterday and will have the sit-down to review it tomarrow. I'll know then what they are planning to do for my knee. I just want it back... running out of time off from work and having withdrals from workin on the '56!!! Probably should add that my house is a mess, and my yard is turning into a jungle!
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Old 08-31-2011, 03:17 PM
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Thanks for kind words Dano. I don't know what your expected results are, but those over flow tubes are usually stainless steel. If yours is stainless, and not chrome, then you can hit the scratches with 250 grit sand paper and buff to a mirror-like shine. Good luck, Jag
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Old 08-31-2011, 03:19 PM
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Great freakin job! Works looks great.

Good luck with the knee, my friend just donated a kidney and he has been spending all his time in bed writing build lists of what he has to do to finish his projects and what parts are missing.
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Old 08-31-2011, 03:19 PM
 
 
 
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