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Discussion Starter #1
Barn finds are all the rage, so I thought I would share. This is the story of a 1965 Galaxie 500 convertible. Actually a garage find. Pretty typical story, with a twist or two along the way. Warning: this is going to be long.

This is the outside of a suburban garage in central CT. Pretty standard house for my area, usually housing some kind of family hauler SUV. You wouldn’t know there was a cool car in here.



We car folks often wonder how a classic car ends up neglected for years. Did the owner die? Is it a victim of an overly ambitious restoration project? Is it one of those “I’m going to restore it some day” stories? Maybe the owner watched too many TV auctions and thinks it is worth a fortune? Whatever the cause, it’s heartbreaking to think of such a car sitting neglected for years. At least this one was inside, protected from the elements.

As it turns out, this Galaxie fell victim to a variety of distractions. A fairly simple mechanical problem took it off the road. Then the owner was busy raising kids, and coaching their sports like soccer, softball, baseball, and basketball. A demanding job required long hours and a lot of travel. Then came time caring for elderly parents and in-laws. Next thing you know, eight years have gone by in the blink of an eye. And the classic car has become a storage shelf.

By now you’re thinking, “let’s see the car already!” Here is the Galaxie as found in late 2018. Sorry for the blurry photo - I must have dropped my camera one too many times. This poor classic was left neglected behind a variety of tools, toys, etc. Even worse, it was buried under a bunch of boxes and other garbage.



So, how did I find this car? Was it during my daily search of the local Craigslist? Ebay? Local swap meet? Tip from another car guy? None of that. I simply walked out the back door of my house. You see, that suburban garage is mine, and I’ve had this Galaxie since 2007.

My car has been in that spot since 2010, when the water pump went bad. I could have spent $60 and a couple of hours to replace the pump. But I guess I thought that was too easy. In future posts, I’ll show the detail of what I did instead. Don’t worry, this isn’t one of those dead end project threads that stops part way. This project is actually done and I’ll post a bunch of photos I took along the way. Hopefully some of you will find it interesting.

- John
 

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Hhhmmmmmm ???
Pictures huh??
Well ,, detective youve got us all sitting on the edges of our bench seats here..

Popcorn at the ready and a bottle of our favorite fizzy drinks..
You tantalize with the back story.. now on with the show??
Please....
 

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Discussion Starter #6 (Edited)
This is going to take a lot of installments - I have lots of photos showing the work as it was being done.

Here is the car after I first got it home, back in 2007. I bought it at the Lake Compounce swap meet that spring. It was kind of fate - I had been casually looking for a '65 or '66 Galaxie convertible at that very time. And this one was really solid.



The story was that this car was pulled from a storage unit in upstate NY with several other, much more collectible cars. There was some damage to the rear bumper and trunk lid when they rolled it off a trailer without realizing it had no brakes. Apparently it hit an ATV - I hate to see what happened to that!

This was a Z code 390 car, with 3 speed column shift. Pretty much no other options. Manual steering, brakes, etc.
I spent a little time getting it running and driving. Usual stuff from sitting. The fuel tank was gummed up and rusty. I cleaned that out and replaced the lines. The brakes were gone, but thankfully new shoes, drums, wheel cylinders, etc were available and not very expensive. I put in a later dual reservoir master cylinder and all new lines. When I fired it up for the first time, it blew a whole bunch of acorns out of the exhaust! The clutch was stuck to the flywheel or pressure plate. I eventually broke it free and it worked fine after that.

I drove the car for a couple of years, until the water pump failed.

As it turned out, I had a different engine sitting in my garage from an aborted project. And a bit too much ambition.

Next up - one engine comes out, and another goes in its place.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
I'm back with another installment. And I solved my photo display problem. I think.

Here is the FE coming out of the car.








Once that was out, I had a relatively large engine compartment to work with. Which is a good thing, because the engine I had hanging around in my garage was pretty wide. Maybe too wide.



I did some measuring and sketching of the engine compartment. It seemed like things would fit, although it would be a tight squeeze. So why not just lower the new engine in place and see if it could work?



It fit!

Anyone willing to guess what that engine is?
 

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Discussion Starter #8
No guesses as to the engine source?

Hint: it's a FoMoCo product, w/double overhead cam and an aluminum block. Craigslist find leftover from another project.

Now, back to the story.

I confirmed the engine would fit in the compartment. So then I needed a transmission. Since my Galaxie was born with a manual shift, I thought I would keep it that way. It felt like a waste to leave that third pedal unused.

How about a five speed? This one was another Craigslist find. Sitting in some kid's yard with a battered hood laying on top of it. He assured me it was fine. What could possibly go wrong?

Here is the trans sitting in place.



The transmission situation looked promising. Seemed like a good idea to keep going.

Rather than wrestle around with the full engine, guess where I found a cheap short block advertised? Here it is, attached to the transmission and shimmed in place.



Another pic. You may notice the magnetic angle finder on the front of the block. To avoid driveline vibrations, engine/trans angle relative to the rear axle angle is pretty important. In my case, the rear pinion angle was 3 degrees if I remember right. So the engine needed to be at that same angle. I used the engine hoist and tilting chain mount to adjust it.





With the engine/trans hanging at the correct angle, things were moving right along. Or so it seemed.
 

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So the galaxie was a manual car when you pulled the fe out did you leave the old manual transmission with the car ? just wondering im doing a engine swap 0n my 63 galaxie with a 4 gear and I want to leave the 4 gear in it . thanks peter I'm in joying your post
 

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pinion angle can be changed easily, but making it right as you build custom stuff is easier from the front as the mounts have to be made anyhow. if the angle couldn't come out right at the engine, the angle at the axle can change
 

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Discussion Starter #13
So the galaxie was a manual car when you pulled the fe out did you leave the old manual transmission with the car ? just wondering im doing a engine swap 0n my 63 galaxie with a 4 gear and I want to leave the 4 gear in it . thanks peter I'm in joying your post
You can leave the transmission in place when you pull the engine. You will need to support the front so that it doesn't drop when you separate the engine.

I went with a 5 speed on my swap. I'm using a T-45 from a Mustang, which bolts right up to the engine. 1996 I think it was - I got lucky on this because the trans can drive a speedometer cable. That made it easier to integrate with my stock dash.

- John
 

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Discussion Starter #14
4.6 32 valve from those ugly Lincolns and stuff?
We have a winner!

Mine came from a Lincoln Mark VIII. Not really my kind of car, but I don't think they are ugly.

This is a WIDE engine. More about that later.

Similar engine was also used in the Continentals from something like '95-'98, but from what I've read the Continental version isn't suited for a swap like this. The block is set up for FWD only - apparently one or more bolt holes are missing. I haven't checked so I can't confirm that.

- John
 

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Discussion Starter #15
pinion angle can be changed easily, but making it right as you build custom stuff is easier from the front as the mounts have to be made anyhow.
Exactly! And a perfect segue into my next update.

Next step was to determine the correct location for the engine. Several factors to consider here. I needed to make sure the transmission cleared the firewall and tunnel. I couldn't have the engine or trans hanging down too close to the ground. There has to be room above the cross member for an oil pan. And of course the engine/trans angle.

The 4.6 modular is a wide engine, especially the DOHC version. So I had to watch the side clearance too. The engine compartment gets wider as you go up, but then you run into the trans tunnel or even the hood. One disadvantage to working with the short block is that I couldn't tell where the exhaust manifolds were going to end up.

The fore/aft position is also a factor. Need to leave room for a radiator, but also need to leave room for the throttle body, etc.

Here is an early attempt at the correct height: lots of clearance above that transmission.



But, this resulted in some problems. I was trying to use the stock FE engine mount brackets that bolt to the crossmember. Here you can see some issues with that plan.




Eventually, through trial and error, I was able to find a position that worked. I then took a bunch of measurements so I could design the engine mounts. Based on the photo dates, I was six days into this project. Pretty good progress, but don't let that fool you into thinking this would be a quick project...
 

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Discussion Starter #16
I'm back for another update. It's been a busy couple of weeks. Work travel, picked up my oldest from college, yard work, etc.

I left off with the engine position measured so I could design motor mounts. I used some polyurethane bushings as the cushions. I modeled part of the engine block and the cross member in SolidWorks, then designed the mounts. I had a laser cutter make the flat parts.

Here is the part that mounts to the crossmember. I had to remove the original FE mount brackets. The rectangular piece bolts to the crossmember, and is slotted to allow some fore/aft adjustment. The other parts have multiple holes for height adjustment.



I used the polyurethane bushings to hold the side plates in place while I tacked them onto the bottom plates. Handy welding magnets held things in place before the first tacks went down.



After the side plates were tacked in place:



After that, I did the final welding. I can't find those pics, but then my welds aren't exactly photogenic anyway.

Interesting note: it was four months between the engine location measurements and welding up the mounts. Life sometimes gets in the way...

Next up: the engine side of the motor mounts.
 

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Discussion Starter #17
For the engine side of the motor mounts, I designed a plate that bolts to the engine and used tubing to capture the polyurethane cushions and offset the mount.

Here is the tubing for one side. The straight cuts were easy (piece on the right side of the pic). The other one was a little more difficult. You can buy equipment and attachments for notching tubing, but there is another way. Basically you use two angle cuts to make the tubing come to a point. That creates a notch.



I had to do some hand filing to get the pieces to fit for welding, but it wasn't much.



Here is everything mocked up.



And partially welded.



I simply mirrored these to make mounts for the other side. According to the dates on these pic files, it took me four days (actually late nights after the kids were in bed) to put the mounts together.

Once the mounts were done, it was time to try them out. Details on that later, but let's just say there are some challenges putting a modern engine into an old car.

- John
 

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Discussion Starter #20
Frieddaddy: spoiler alert - it sounds great. These posts are documenting work that's already been done. I just didn't take time to post while the project was in process.

Fakesnake, it is a '93 or '94 (sadly, I can't remember...) Mark VIII engine. I used parts of the stock harness and made some of my own.

On to the next phase: trial engine install using the new motor mounts.

The Mark VIII uses a rear sump oil pan. No good for the Galaxie, and lots of the older cars. The aftermarket offers front sump pans (Canton is one source), but it turns out mid-'90s Lincoln Continentals came stock with front sump pans. I tracked one down and put it on my mock-up short block to test the engine mounts. I immediately found a problem - the oil pan hits the stock cross member. So I started cutting.



Many of you know these cars are known for the frames rotting from the inside out. Here's why that happens. This came out of the crossmember. I left the utility knife there for size reference. This is a dry climate car - add in some salt and moisture and the frame doesn't have much of a chance.



Here it is with the mounts in place.



And with some patches tacked in.



So now I had the short block in place, with correct height and angle. Next step: try the full engine, including exhaust manifolds.

- John
 
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