I have found a 57 Ranchero body not too bad no motor original owner, Imay get to buy ,I was considering taking body off 57 frame and putting on newer frame with discs ps ect anyone know what modern frame would work? a lincoln? LTD? thunderbird? and also what drive train suggestions,429? 302? 351? C6? C4? Are these Cars valuable ?Thanks Fatz
Best engine (IMHO) would be a 302/351W with C-4 trans. Closeness between the A-frames makes big block conversions difficult due to exhaust manifold clearance problems. I put a 390 in a 59 Ranchero but had to use the narrow exhaust manifolds - headers were out of the question. The original Rancheros (57-59) are becoming very collectable and rare. If already equipped with power stearing (at least the slave cylinder and control valve) just add an alternator and A/C to make a great ride. If the sheetmetal and glass are good - go for it !! Where is it and how much $$ ??
I am upstate NY and so is the 57 I hope about $400.00 I want to put it on a torino or ltd or lincoln chassis so i have all modern upgrades but first i have to score the 57 then see what chassies are about the same thanks Fatz
Can't go wrong for the $$. Big concern in your area is sheetmetal (use to live in Jersey). Rusted wheelwells and outer panels are difficult to repair. Matching the body to a later chassis is also challenging, however, maybe go max radical and put the old Rancher on a 4X4 frame with running gear for a really interesting ride. Think you have the basis for a great project. Keep us up to date.
[updated:LAST EDITED ON 06-Mar-02 AT 09:14 PM (EST)]I have been wanting a 57 or a 59 Ranchero for years, haven't found any in the midwest that the rust demons had not started to chew up. As far as value, it will never be a retractable or sunliner, but they are neat just the same. Anyone have a '59 Ranchero they want to get rid of??
( jta1986(No Email Addresses In Posts!) )
Had a 57 Retract and 59 Ranchero at the same time !! Sold them both in 1983 before going overseas - never would have guessed they would be pulling down the $$ like the Collector Car section in Autotrader.com. If I only had that crystal ball back then. Think we all like the old classics. Problem now would be trying to replace a fender, door, or quarter after a bender. Still would be very cool !!
If it is not a rust bucket buy it for sure. The parts are getting harder to find than you could imagine. I have a 58 ranchero that was a rust bucket and now five years later it is perfect. I put a 428 police intercepter, C6, Narrowed lincoln versaille 9" with discs, Dropped it, Cut the roof off of it and put a retractable windshield and frame on it and made the roof a removeable hardtop. I can't leave the house without people asking me what it is. They are easy to put front discs on. Just swap spindles and master cylinder and proportion valve with a v8 granada and Voila. If not for the rust it would have been done 3 years ago.