1961 - 1963 F100 Unibody1961, 1962 and 1963 Ford F100 Unibody trucks
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Hello everyone. My name is Kevin and I am new to the forum. I am the owner of a 1963 F100. I bought it 3 years ago but have stored it for the last 2 due to a move and no where to put it. I have it out now and am looking to do some work on it. Like I said, it's a 1963 F100, but that's about all I know about the truck. I have old trucks in the past, but never a Ford. I don't know if this is a unibody or not. Here are some numbers for you all to chew on to see if you can give me a hand.
WB Color Model Body Trans Axle
114 VM F100 81A A 12
I found a vin decoder and got through that part already. Don't have a clue as to where to find out info for this door plate. If anyone out there could give me a helping hand I would greatly appreciat it. Also, I was told that the truck is a "custom" because of the hood ornament. It is the one with the 5 stars in a line on top and a lightning bolt through the middle. Is this correct or was the previous owner blowing smoke up my ***? Thanks in advance for any help.
Hi Kevin, and welcome.
A unibody (which isn't really a unibody, more like a unicab) truck will have the bedsides welded directly to the cab. A non-uni is like any other truck...there is a gap between the bed and the cab you can fit your hand in, because the box can be removed seperately from the frame. Ford tried the uni idea from 1961 to 1963, and then went back to standard beds across the range in '64.
A custom cab should have a silvery, unpainted aluminum grille instead of painted steel, and should also have a chrome-look instrument bezel with 'custom cab' on it. Beyond that I'm not as educated in the 61-64 trucks as others here.
The gear-and-lightning-bolt hood emblem is the standard emblem for the hood of your truck and carries no significance.
I take it there is no way to confirm it is a 63 other than going by the title. The title says 63, but from what you are saying, not until 64 did they go back to the seperate box. My box is seperate from cab. Could it be a 64 built in latter half of 63? Decoding the vin doesn't give me the year.
Sorry I wasn't clear on that. Ford made both types of trucks as stated. If your truck is a '63 then it should have the odd looking bed which is actually the 57-60 type which was offered alongside the Uni. They have round taillamps. In '64 they went to a 'proper' bed with matching body lines and a vertical taillamp that was used beyond '66.
Unless you have a stepside, in which case you can ignore all of this.
Back to the frame thing. . . . 57-64 frames, model & wheel base for model & wheel base are virtually the same chassis. It doesn't matter if you have a integral bed or not. From this thread I think you have an old "slab sided" & round tailight, styleside bed, also from 57 era, thru' 60 & sometimes to 63.
For a direct bolt up you need to use an early style [57-64] frame [chassis]. In 65 the F series through F-250s went to the twin I beam IFS system. This is virtually the same through 72. In 73 FoMoCo improved basic 65 chassis design, it is not a bolt up for the 65-72, or the 57-63, but with some skill and effort and a little help you can place your 63 sheet metal on a 73-79 frame.
You will gain Front Disc Brakes, Good saginaw style P/S better front suspensions & coil spring set up and the ability to bolt many power trains into your "conversion" after you do it, than you ever will now. IOW you will bring all aspects of your mid 20th century truck, from the last Millennium into this, the 21st century & this Millennium.
Of course this is all an Aesthetic, as well as a performance move, and some folks prefer to keep their trucks relatively stock, and yours sounds relatively stock from the S/N & description you've posted.
I hope this helps you with your broken/ cracked frame problem.
Last edited by FordBoypete; 03-02-2006 at 10:34 AM.
Yes, It does from 57-64 then 65-72 & 73-79, generally speaking and wheelbase for wheelbase & Model for model. What makes the 57-64 type frames so different is the 4 leaf springs, one at each corner, live front [single I Beam] axle, a Front X Bellhousing mounted engine, totally different steering linkage & location, different frame rail configurations & X-members etc. these frames are very similar only in the years 57-64.
65-72 are likewise similar in the 2wd versions. The 73-79s are close to the 65-72s, but a tad longer, and the rear rails a tad wider. Still a 65 & up can be bolted to a 79 or vice-a-versa by fudging the bed in CA area & redrilling bed to bolt down on the wider 73-79 rails.
But bolting a pre 65 to a 65-79 style frame, altho' it can be done is probably more work than most novices should tackle without a bunch of resources. Things such as experienced help, equipment, [welder, crane or body lifting ability] huge shop with a good selection of tools and so forth. It's more than a couple of weekends of work.
Oh BTW,Stepside is a Brand X terminology, do you have a brand X pick up box/ bed? If not, we call them flareside because of how tops of the sides have a slight flare.
Last edited by FordBoypete; 03-04-2006 at 11:37 PM.
Okay, good idea to stick with what you have. As for the Stepside name, business,
aftermarket merchants do it because they don't know the difference. Try looking in a FoMoCo parts manual. FoMoCo calls 'em flaresides or stylesides & they invented them, FWIW.
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