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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Planning ahead for wheels, tires, and disc brake conversion. I read a bunch of threads but again can't quite find the exact answer I'm looking for. I'm hesitant to post anything after my debacle in the stroker motor threads but hopefully this goes well. the goal is for the car to not ride like a yacht and for it to stop like a more modern vehicle.

right now the 66 convertible has the original drum brakes and 15" wheels (hopefully I can take a pic with the car on the ground a post it over the weekend). Current suspension upgrades include Hotchkis TVS supsension kit, Bilstein comfort shocks, 190lb heavy duty moog springs in rear, 411lb moog front springs with 3/4 coil removed for a 1 to 1.5" drop in front (looking for a slightly raked look).

my step dad asked if I could keep a retro look (he donated the car), so I'm thinking magnum 500s with the ford crown logo center caps should look sporty yet period correct. I'm leaning towards one of two combos for wheels and brakes...
1. Scott Drake Magnum 500, 16x8, 4.50" backspace, 1mm offset.
235/60r16 tires (27.17" tire diam).
Wilwood Dynalite front brake kit 140-13653-D, 11.3" rotor diameter, 4 piston caliper.

2. Scott Drake Magnum 500, 17x8, 4.75" backspace, 6mm offset.
235/55r17 tires (27.10" tire diam).
Willwood Superlite front brake kit 140-13654-D, 12.88" rotor diameter, 6 piston caliper.

Cost: The 16" wheel/tire combo with the 11.3" front rotor kit costs $850 less than the 17" setup. (Edit: Plus another $600+ if I convert the rear end. The smaller setup with wilwood smaller kit front and back saves $1400+)

Wheel Selection: this may sound silly but I like the Scott Drake wheels because they are the only ones that offer the Ford Crown logo on a center cap. and the installation of the center cap is specific to their wheels so it can't be applied to an American Racing wheel, etc.

Fit: The 11.3" rotors would supposedly fit behind 14" wheels so the 16s should definitely fit around them, but 17" wheels would be needed for the 12.88" rotors. However, are the backspacing and offset dimensions of the Scott Drake wheels ok for the 66 galaxie? I noticed the backspacing and offset were different for the 16" wheels versus the 17" wheels. Also, I'm not sure how this is affected by the Hotchkis suspension kit since the car has new upper and lower A arms. I emailed hotchkis to see what size wheels and tires they used in their test videos, but there's been no response.

Stopping Distance: I have read there is a large advantage in going to the 11.3" rotor over keeping the stock front drums... but is there a huge advantage in going up to the 12.88" rotor from the 11.3" rotor? for the 4500lb car, would I notice the difference between the two setups when slowing from 65mph?

Comfort: I have also read that when upsizing from OEM 15" wheels, folks feel that 17" wheels provide more responsive steering and a better look but they are also much rougher and noisier. for daily driving, would the 16" setup be a good middle of the ground compromise? has anyone gone this route? if so, what's your feedback?

Visual: with the magnum 500s, the windows are so small I don't think anyone will see slotted and drilled rotors or colorful calipers, so the wheels and tires will be the visual impact. I have seen pictures that are close but no pics of the 235/60R16 or 235/55R17 for comparison on 65 to 68 galaxies. Is anyone running one of these sizes? Can you post a picture?
 

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Discussion Starter #2
here are a few pics of the current setup. you can see the old drums in a couple of the pics
  1. rear shock and coil
  2. rear lower control arms
  3. panhard bar
  4. rear upper control arm
  5. rear sway bar
  6. front sway bar, control arms, strut rods, end links
 

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Discussion Starter #3 (Edited)
the galaxie is still on jackstands from the suspension install. hopefully I can find time to put the wheels back on and push it out of the garage for a picture on the ground.
the original bias ply tires were 28" diameter. see the attached picture when I first towed the car to the house.
I sandblasted and repainted the 15" wheel and used a touring tires (see attached), but they haven't been bolted up yet. after cutting 3/4 of a coil on the new front springs (should give that 1 to 1.5" drop in the front), i was hoping for a 26.5" tall tire for the OEM wheels but in a wider width than original. that would have been a 225/65r15 which apparently isn't available, so my tire guy put on the next size down. 225/60r15. I'm afraid the 25.6" tall tires will look awefully small in the wheel wells and haven't taken the time to find out.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Tires were flat from being on jacks for so long. Aired them up and got them on the car. All four wheels turned ok in the air. Brakes sounded a little rusty but not too bad. Got the car on the ground but couldn’t push it out the garage. So no pics on the ground yet. Ran out of time to play with the old gal. Will try again next weekend.
 

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Have you purchased a disc brake conversion kit yet?
In my opinion, I would simply find a set of disc brake spindle assemblies from a '70-'72 Galaxie. They are a straight swap. That way you will have all Ford parts, Galaxie calipers and 12" factory rotors.
That's what I ended up doing to my '63 Galaxie, and more recently with a friend's '66.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
I like this idea better than the aftermarket stuff. Thanks, DANV!!! Do you have pics of the swap on either cars?
 

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Have you purchased a disc brake conversion kit yet?
In my opinion, I would simply find a set of disc brake spindle assemblies from a '70-'72 Galaxie. They are a straight swap. That way you will have all Ford parts, Galaxie calipers and 12" factory rotors.
That's what I ended up doing to my '63 Galaxie, and more recently with a friend's '66.
I like this idea better than the aftermarket stuff. Thanks, DANV!!! Do you have pics of the swap on either cars?
Only one caveat with the later spindles, hubs, etc...

The later hubs need a larger center hole in the rims, compared to 66 parts.
Can't use stock 66 wheels.

Not an issue if you are using aftermarket wheels.

Sounds like aftermarket wheels are in your plans,
but thought I'd point it out in case anyone else is reading this,
and planning to use stock wheels with the brake swap.
 

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I originally bought a disc brake kit which I wasted about 6 months trying to get it to work right. I then found that some of the parts were inferior, so I then fitted the disc assemblies from a '71 Galaxie.


Here is the thread I made, but with Photobucket hosting the photos, I don't know if everyone can see the pics anymore.
https://www.fordmuscleforums.com/galaxie-pages/518585-fitting-later-galaxie-disc-brakes-early-galaxies.html
I was planning on using the Scarebird disc brake conversion kit. Anybody have any experience with that kit? Sounded good on paper, just an adapter plate so that you could use off the shelf late model brake parts.
 

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Discussion Starter #11 (Edited)
I found conflicting info on the web. Some sites say that from 1965 to 1972 the full size ford cars had 15x6 wheels, 5x114.3 bolt pattern, 1/2” RH bolts, and 70.3mm hub center bore. Others say the 1971 has the same 5x114.3 bolt pattern but a 72.6mm center bore.
Dan, can you confirm the size of the 1971 center bore?
Sounds like I would need to swap the rear also so I can rotate tires. (I misread the article. This is only if going to 5 on 5 front and rear bolt pattern)
 

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Discussion Starter #12
I have zero experience with the scarebird brackets but In step by step threads, I saw folks using a hodgepodge of parts from various years of mustangs, galaxies, etc. most of my car is turning into a hodgepodge of stuff but for some reason I would like to avoid this approach to the disc brakes, rotors, etc.

The Wilwood kits were somewhat intriguing because of the name recognition and having everything needed in a box set. But after more thinking, my problem with the kits... PST, Wilwood, etc... is that I have no idea of what’s in the kit. So I could see me scratching my head when buying individual replacement parts in the future.

I like DANVs idea if the fronts and rears are all galaxie parts from the same year. Seems easier for future maintenance. I do wish someone had a genuine Ford parts list needed for the front and back in order to make the full conversion to the 1971 discs.
 

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I have zero experience with the scarebird brackets but In step by step threads, I saw folks using a hodgepodge of parts from various years of mustangs, galaxies, etc. most of my car is turning into a hodgepodge of stuff but for some reason I would like to avoid this approach to the disc brakes, rotors, etc.

The Wilwood kits were somewhat intriguing because of the name recognition and having everything needed in a box set. But after more thinking, my problem with the kits... PST, Wilwood, etc... is that I have no idea of what’s in the kit. So I could see me scratching my head when buying individual replacement parts in the future.

I like DANVs idea if the fronts and rears are all galaxie parts from the same year. Seems easier for future maintenance. I do wish someone had a genuine Ford parts list needed for the front and back in order to make the full conversion to the 1971 discs.
I can only speak to your concern regarding the Wilwood brake kits. I had the Wilwood disc brake conversion done on both the front and rear wheels and the kits have everything you need for a bolt-on application with the exception of brake lines/hoses. The included instructions are comprehensive and have every part and part number listed in the kit. Wilwood isn't going anywhere and should you need any replacement parts in the future, you can order them simply by referencing the illustration and part numbers provided.

You don't have to buy directly from Wilwood as their kits and/or individual parts are available through multiple vendors such as Summit Racing, Jegs, etc..

If you look at the second and third pages of these instructions you'll see all the parts and numbers.

Wilwood Assembly Instructions
 

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Discussion Starter #14 (Edited)
289, Do you remember which size kit you got? 11.3” or 12.8” rotor? And how’s it working for you?

just curious, does anyone know if Wilwood is a one off type product or is it a Ford aftermarket or is it like a Chevy aftermarket adapted to fit our Fords? In the end, it probably doesn’t matter because I do have a Hotchkis suspension kit, edelbrock RPM intake and heads, and other nonstock items.

In the end, I’m not really sure of the best way to go and I’m sure they all have pros and cons
 

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Discussion Starter #15 (Edited)
I’m not sold on a way to go yet (new kit versus 71/72 OEM swap) but I did a little more reading about Dans idea and found this article...
https://www.fordmuscle.com/archives/2004/07/12inchBrakeConversion/index.php

Sounds like a 1972 thunderbird rotor is 1” larger than the 69-72 galaxie and uses all the other same parts. Not sure if they’re any harder to find. The article confirms what GalaxieX says about the larger center hole in the wheels. The conversion matches the 5x114.3 bolt pattern of my 66 galaxie but the center bore is 72mm so I would need new wheels
 

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I've just measured one of my rotors which came from a '71 Galaxie kit, and a spare rotor which came off my '70 Galaxie. They are 11 5/8" diameter.
The hub sizes are a fraction away from 70mm diameter.
 

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289, Do you remember which size kit you got? 11.3” or 12.8” rotor? And how’s it working for you?

just curious, does anyone know if Wilwood is a one off type product or is it a Ford aftermarket or is it like a Chevy aftermarket adapted to fit our Fords? In the end, it probably doesn’t matter because I do have a Hotchkis suspension kit, edelbrock RPM intake and heads, and other nonstock items.

In the end, I’m not really sure of the best way to go and I’m sure they all have pros and cons
11.3 in the front but I'm running 15" wheels.
 

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Discussion Starter #19 (Edited)
Based on what y’all are running, 11”+ rotors and 4 piston calipers should do fine (edit: I misread previous threads. The 71 conversion uses a single piston caliper). And now I have two viable solutions to make that work.

Now I have to decide on wheel and tire size. Guess now I’m considering three options for new wheels...
*stock style 15x8s. Maybe a chrome barrel with black insert and the original dog dish caps. From DANVs thread on his conversion, this would work with a 4” backspace. This would be a more comfy ride and I already have new 15” tires, but would it feel too bouncy and lead to understeer vs 16 and 17” wheels?
*16x8 drake mag 500. Will 4.5” backspace work with the discs? is this a good balance between the shock dampening of the 15s and the performance of the 17s? Maybe someone has experience and pics of something similar.
*17x8 drake mag 500. Will 4.75” backspace work with discs? is the performance worth the noise and rough ride? It’s a three hour drive to cruising the coast... Will this make me want to pull over and call a tow truck? Haha
 

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If you are going to use 15" rims, then avoid the 4 piston calipers. The factory 4 piston calipers as used on the '66 and '67 Galaxies required different rims to clear the calipers, and probably one of the reasons why Ford then went to single piston calipers from 1968 in their Galaxies and other cars.
 
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