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Just got myself my first old car, 1963 Ranchero. I'm an old motorcycle guy, Triumphs specifically, having wanted something with a few more cool points than my 97 s-10 to haul bikes around with and be my daily driver. Have a few little things to sort out before the s-10 will be fully replaced, but I'm learning what I need to. Manual is on its way to my mailbox, so I can learn what i need to. Got a set of 175/80r13s off ebay to replace the cracked and rotting 170/70r13s on it. Getting a rear windshield cut locally next week (after this little snowstorm - first this winter!- is over), and need to go through the carb and reattach the manual choke.

1968 or 69 200ci Straight 6

3 speed on the floor

Missing left side headlight cowl, hood "scoop" trim, and various other bits.

The good is it runs, shifts, and (after a simple brake bleed, first ever for me) stops. Pulls hard to the left when braking, accelerates crisply, and rattles like a mother without any door seals or headliner. Seat vinyl is pretty solid, dash is intact, and floors are not the worst I've seen. Tips and suggestions welcome, like I said I'm new to cars, but have pretty good knowledge of old Triumph motorcycles (do all my own rebuild work short of machining). I'm looking to simply keep her running, maybe freshen it up with simple mods, and enjoy life on the road without the hassle of smog certs ever again.









 

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No plans on selling. I know I get Waaaaaay too attached to anything I build. I have 3 kids to hand things down to, so I have no incentive to get rid of stuff. My goal so far is to preserve what's there and drive it, making small improvements along the way as I learn how and can afford it.

Thought of picking up a T-5, even though I have no idea what to do with it yet. I've done some reading here and elsewhere on it, and have an idea of what to look for, though that does nothing to help me actually install it! It's one of those things I hope to grow into.

I'm a bit worried about the cowl and its potential rust problems. I have no idea how to check yet, every photo I've seen of them is when they're out of the car already. Where do I stick my head/mirror to see the condition?

Mostly I picked this one up because the price was right and the motor and tranny was sound, and rust was not nearly as bad as some others I'd seen in the price range I was working with.

Any tips and help on identifying rust and easy fixes (I'm not a welder but my best friend is a great one) for the trouble panes is welcome, I'll be cruising around asking stupid questions on the threads here.
 

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They're fun little rides! I got this one last Sept,and drove it most of the winter!( we had a real mild one!) Runs like a champ!
 

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Yeesh, just tore into the floor mats behind the seat to install some new lap belts. Rear floors are pretty crusted out. Don't think there's much that's holding those new belts in place.

I'm a sheetmetal moron. I know a little bit about fabricating motorcycle stuff, brackets, frame geometry, that sort of thing, but I'm an idiot when people start bringing up english wheels, press brakes and the like. Looks like I've got a lot of learning to do. This is supposed to become my new daily driver, and pronto!

The good thing is that it looks like besides total floor pans (front, middle, and likely rear) there's not much structural I'm hurting from. I've got some through rust on the body where the back wagon seat area is on the passenger side, but I don't care much about body rust at this point. I know that the floors on my unibody are pretty structural, so I'll be wanting to attack that first, and that it doesn't need to be pretty (eventually covered by carpet or what-not) is a bonus.
 

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It's all repairable. And you shouldn't need a English Wheel. :)

See what pieces you can buy from AutoKrafters or Melvins Classic Ford parts and Dearborn?

Or make your own patch panels out of 18 and 20 gauge material.
I've made more then one piece by forming over a 2x4 clamped in my vice. If you need a gentle radius, I will find a piece of pipe or pvc and even a Argon bottle and forming it over it. Whatever works.

Where are you located? I've got a set of Mustang floor pans that you may be able to use for repair pieces? Let them go for shipping plus a few bucks for gas. PM me if your interested.

As for your Cowls, Look up under the dash. And look for rust and previous repairs. Pour water in the vent outside, and look for it leaking up under dash. Left and right side around the fresh air vent hats.

Good Luck

Jet
 

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Jetfixr,

Thanks for the response. I'm in Grass Valley, it's halfway between Sacramento and Lake Tahoe. If you can spare the panels I'd be indebted to you.

I've only seen dearborn classics and Dennis Carpenter. I'll have to check those other suppliers out.

I'm pretty sure the cowl is leaking on the passenger side. There's water on my "floorboards" every time it rains. I'll have to look better when I get the truck back from the tire installer. Getting my new tires on this week, yay!
 

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I have a magnetic cover for the cowl to keep the rain out! It's made of the same stuff like the magnetic signs that goes on vehicles doors. Check eBay or make one! It works good! Don't forget the drain holes under the wiper arms!
 

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nice pick up.

this doesnt really have to do with your thread. but i see you are into triumphs. and well most people that are into them dont only have 1. im wondering if you happen to have any spare frames layin around that you would let go for cheap? ive always wanted to build a triumph.
 
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