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Tis the Season To Be Jolly


I'm so glad that it is warming up. I have so many things that I have wanted to do, but due to a short amount of daylight and a cold, bitter wind things have not been accomplished like I have wanted them. I need to finish siding the salon that was built a little over four months ago. I have the materials, but I haven't had a good day to do it. Tomorrow is Saturday and it's looking like it'll be a great day for it.

Jodi and I plan to take the boys, after Lyric's morning nap, to the March of Dimes walk at Jordan Valley Park. It starts at noon and according to Weather.com it should be sunny and a warm 56 degrees. The walk is for two miles and so we'll be done by one o'clock. After we eat lunch, I'll get to work on the siding by two o'clock when the temperature should be up to about 61 degrees. With a high of 67, I should get a lot of it done if not the whole thing. That would sure be nice to get it all done, but I'm not betting the farm on it.

Then, next week looks good temperature-wise but there will be some rain scattered throughout the week. But, I'll still get some time in there to start pulling components off of and out of my truck. I'm going to start prepping it for lift-off. As you may know from previous blogs or just from me talking to you about it, I plan on taking the '59 Ford truck body off it's frame and placing it on the '92 Ford van's frame. It'll be a big project. I thought that I might find on the Internet that someone has already done it or something like it, but I haven't found anything of the sort. So, I also plan to fully document the transfer and make a step-by-step instructional web page for other people that want to give an old Ford a make-over.

This project will have many challenges, but in the end my '59 will have many modern conveniences that make it the best '59 Ford around. The modern advances that the truck will receive include power steering, power disk brakes, cruise control, an upgraded engine from a 223 straight-six to a 302 V8, an upgraded transmission from a Granny Low 4-speed Standard to an Automatic Heavy Duty Tranny with Overdrive, an upgraded modern lighter-weight frame better suited for towing, and a modern suspension package better suited for hauling and cornering. I'll also not have the gas tank behind the seat anymore as I'll use the van's gas tank as it is currently set to the underside of the frame. I've always felt like I was driving around with a 15-gallon Molotov Cocktail strapped to my back.

I'll also ditch the '59's broken and worn out bench seat for the perfect condition two vinyl bucket seats that the van sports. These advances will allow me to drive the truck on the highway without fear of engine explosion. The old Granny low tranny was not meant to drive at highway speeds. Also, anyone will be able to drive it. The old truck required the driver to be able to squat at least 250 pounds in order to press the brakes hard enough to stop it. All-around drum brakes are no longer adequate for today's stop-on-a-dime traffic. It also required an arm-wrestling champion in parking lots. With no power steering, it took forearms of steel to crank that steering wheel far enough to make the tight corners required in today's parking lots. And, it was not uncommon to have to make a line of cars wait as I executed a five-point turn to get out of a parking spot.

I know you can tell, but I'm very excited about getting my truck back in a condition that is way better than when I last drove it. So, what are you excited about with this new warmer season? Do you have big plans for this spring and summer?

3 comments:

Well I'm finally done raking, now I'll be able to keep the door open so that I can stain and finish the stairs. Yay!! What else, what else, what else??

how are you going to lift the bed of the truck on to the frame or the van off of its frame? When you do get it finished it will be a true work of art!!!

Good question. My steps in a nutshell are as follows: #1 Everything inside my truck engine compartment needs removed from the body and firewall so that when I unbolt the cab from the frame it will lift off without anything attached, #2 When I'm ready for the project to begin I'll unbolt every component hanging on the body of the van and hang it from the engine so that when I dismantle and unbolt the van's body it will lift off without any of the engine components. This will leave me with the van's frame, engine, and drivetrain all still together. #3 I will begin to place the truck cab over the engine and onto the frame. Everything measures up and there's plenty of room in my truck engine compartment for everything. Once the cab is in place, I'll connect the truck's steering column to the van's power steering box with a tractor steering arm yoke. They make them in every shape and size. I'll then attach the van's power brake system to the brake pedal of the truck. Then, the fuel linkage to the gas pedal is simple since it is cable-driven. #4 With all the controls in place, I simply bolt to the truck all the components that I previously hung from the van's engine, then I have the complicated task of wiring up the instrument panel (not going to lie, I'll pull my hair out over that one). But once everything is hooked up, I simply bolt down the cab to the frame with some rubber blocks for custom cab mounts. The bed will be easy since it's only held to the frame with 8 bolts. However, before I can mount the bed, I 'll need to have the frame cut down 18 inches, the driveshaft shortened by 18 inches, and the dual exhaust chopped by 18 inches. Then, the bed will go on and there won't be an 18 inch gap between the bed and the cab. Simple, huh? Hee hee.

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