So I've wanted to do this for quite some time, and I figure now is a good a time as ever. I've started working on the car again, I've been taking pics as I go, I love reading other people's builds, so why not share mine. Please step in and correct, comment, berate, or encourage whenever you want. If there is enough attention, I'll continue to post and it should be fun. I can use all the motivation I can get!
The car is a 1964 Ford Galaxie 2 door hardtop. Some people call it a fastback, but I think hardtop is more correct. There are no B-pillars which makes for extra awesome windows down action. It is a 500XL trim package car which means bucket seats, center console with floor shift, and some upgraded exterior trim pieces mostly. It was originally equipped with a 390FE rated at ~320bhp and a Cruise-o-matic trans. This is essentially a Ford-o-matic, or an FMX - it's a 3 speed auto that starts off in 2nd I think if it is not put into low. The engines technically aren't big blocks and not small blocks. The FE's are in a category of their own and I've even heard them called midland. All in all it's not a muscle car per se, but it is a big cruiser with a big motor, and I think they look damn good.
These cars are body on frame construction with upper and lower control arms, coil springs in front, and leaf springs in the back on a solid 9" axle. Steering is power assisted parallelogram with an idler and pitman arm. They might as well be trucks. The power assist is wayyy over the top and you can essentially drive the car with one finger. Pretty scary at speed. Brakes are manual 11" drums all the way around, but I've upgraded to a 11" 4 piston discs up front with a dual pot master. OE is a single pot death trap.
Bought the car when I was 19. I'm 32 now, so I've had this thing for too long to not have finished it yet. I was in trade school at the time studying autobody collision. The car was sitting in a garage in West Seattle and I had it towed the .5 mile back to South Seattle Com. College were I was taking classes. While in trade school, I took the body off the frame, blasted the body, painted and rebuilt the frame, and then proceeded to refinish and reassemble the body panels. That's where it sat for the next year or so until I was ready to go off to college.
It is my 2nd '64 Galaxie, with the first being a 4 door hardtop that I painted and threw a rebuilt 352FE motor/ CoM trans in for my senior project. Not sure how I got away with that but I must've had some cool teachers
Here is the '64 Galaxie from the HS days:
I sold it to a guy in the Ballard area when I was 18 and I think he still may own it.
OK, on to the progress. Pictures will be of varying quality. I don't have a nice camera, so bear with me. Some will be digicam, some will be potato. The white balance will be off on all of them.
During Trade School:
These pictures were taken on a disposable, printed, and scanned, so I apologize for the quality. It was roughly 2002 at the time and digicams were still too expensive for a 19 year old
Body just off the frame - on cloud nine as I was actually beginning my first real project. My instructor's Dakota R/T when it was brand new and kind of a hot truck.
Shot of me spraying the roof. I'm shooting my SATA gun that I worked all summer for.
A shot of the frame after painting with POR-15, replacing all wear items including springs, and upgrading to front discs.
Pic of the car outside the booth rolling around on the body cart that some really cool guys in class helped me build.
It took me roughly 8 months doing this by myself. Taking the car apart completely, and getting it put back together to a painted, but gutted rolling chassis. I took autobody from 7am-12pm every day, went to class till about 2pm, then came back after normal classes and worked on the car for another 2 hrs almost every day to get it done in time (before graduating). I was learning how to do autobody at the time so things moved a little slow.
OK, so at this point we're going to fast forward about 12 years. I have tons of pics from the body restoration if people are interested in that stuff, including some patch panel work, but they'll need to be dug up and scanned in as they're all in a photo album - yes a physical photo album.
So once I was done with A/B school I went on to finish a General AA, which took about another year. The car sat outside under a car cover until I was ready to ship off to a university. Luckily, once there I had a garage to store and work on the car in. During this time I rushed the car together. I wasn't totally sure what the end goal of the car was, and what style I was trying to achieve. I thought about drag car with black steels on the back and torque thrusts or cragars on the front, but I couldn't really nail anything down. I was on an extremely tight budget being a student, and I didn't really have too much knowledge on the mechanical side of things. I put it together the best I could and got it running for a few years. The interior was never done, and frankly, just about everything I did in my college years was done pretty subpar compared to the time and effort that went into the body. It was time to go back and do things correctly...