Wednesday, February 20, 2008

The Wagon

One of the cool things about LA is the abundance of cars. This is a problem, to be sure, but it's also awesome, as you can find some sweet old cars for dirt cheap. A personal favorite is the craigslist cheap car search.

This search netted us a great find: a 1967 Ford Country Sedan (click to make bigger):

Here it is with the rest of the fleet:

Here's the rear. You'll note the Ford-exclusive tailgate that opens like a tailgate or a giant hinged door:

It's got a 390 with a 4 barrel, and seating for 10. One of the things that sold us on it is the old-school Cragar wheels:

A closeup on the aged-to-perfection center cap:

Yes, those are the front drum brakes. I'd also like to add that when we took it home there was no fluid in the master cylinder for the rear drums. The brake pedal was really more of a suggestion.

So far, maintenance has consisted of:
-Adding brake fluid (see above) and bleeding rear brakes
-A few quarts of oil
-Removing an odd piece of chrome trim that was rubbing on the tailgate. This of course required the entire rear bumper to be unbolted, which was an exercise in frustration because the bumper is held on with bolts that lock in place in little square holes, which easily strip when loaded with the torque required to break loose nuts that have been in place for 40 years.
-Replacing the rear wheel bearings. You'd be surprised how hard it is to find a shop that'll press wheel bearings off of axleshafts. Also, the parts Pep Boys supplied were wrong. UnderCar for the win!

Modifications have consisted of adding a 3 gauge cluster for oil pressure, water temp and volts. Apparently Ford engineers in the 60s assumed issues regarding oil pressure and water temp would be so rare, we only need idiot lights to alert us to the problem. There will be pictures when they're properly installed and wired up.

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