‘79 Ranchero Front End

Discussion in 'General Ranchero Help' started by SquirrelMD, May 12, 2020.

  1. SquirrelMD

    SquirrelMD In First Gear

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    I have been looking around online at some customizations others have done to their Ranchero’s, and it’s created some questions and I’d like to post them here and see what all of you think.

    1- I like the front clip on the Mercury Cougar, and If I found one in good shape I wouldn’t mind swapping it onto mine. Is the front grille and headlight assembly the directly swappable with my ‘79 Ranchero, or would the fenders and hood need to be switched out as well.

    2- I’ve also noticed the Thunderbird has a similar style. Does anyone here know if it would be compatible as well?

    I’m only working on the interior at the moment, but I like to brainstorm potential customizations as I future this renovation/revamp.

    As always, thanks for your replies and assistance in advance.

    SquirrelMD
     
  2. 1979 RANCHERO GT

    1979 RANCHERO GT In Maximum Overdrive

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    The 77-79 hoods, header panels, and bumper fillers are the only things you would need to change. Thunderbird fenders have the grilles on the fender otherwise the same and for the Tbird you would have to change the headlight switch and add the vacuum hoses for the headlight switch from under the hood
     
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  3. handy_andy_cv64

    handy_andy_cv64 In Maximum Overdrive SILVER MEMBER

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    Made a long-@$$ed trip up to North of Waco to look at a Cougar; the front end was hashed, the bumper was gone, and the floorboards were rotted. Managed to pull a bunch of parts, but be ready to travel long distances, if you're lucky, just to look at a Cougar or T-bird for parts.
     
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  4. SquirrelMD

    SquirrelMD In First Gear

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    Sounds like it’s a great opportunity to take if it ever presents itself, but I shouldn’t hold my breath.
    Thanks for all of your replies and honesty.
     
  5. handy_andy_cv64

    handy_andy_cv64 In Maximum Overdrive SILVER MEMBER

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    You're quite welcome. We're heading back up this weekend, and I'm gonna look at the floorboards, ask them about what they allow for removal.
     
  6. Ranchero78

    Ranchero78 In First Gear

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    I have a 78 ranchero with the full front clip from a thunderbird. Fits exactly and looks great
     
  7. Dan the ranchero man

    Dan the ranchero man MODERATOR Staff Member

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    As for as the 77-79 ranchero go you have many choices of front ends from the ford midsize family that will fit. From the 77-79 era you can use the 77-79 cougar and t bird. The cougar is a swap and done mod. the t-bird will require a bit more work because of the hide a way headlights. has been done and looks nice. If you want to go back a little farther you can use the 73-76 montego and the 74-76 cougar and the 74 76 elite. these will require complete front end swaps and these will bolt on as well. some of these (like the t-bird) will reqire that you get some of the wiring from there donor cars for headlights and other exterior lighting. this is my 79 ranchero with a 73 montego front clip and this front end bolted on to this car.

    [​IMG]
     
  8. 5.0 Chero

    5.0 Chero Bahumbug Staff Member

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    BEST looking 77/9 Ranchero on this site!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
     
  9. Spencer

    Spencer In First Gear

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    Got a '78 Ranchy with '78 Cougar front end here. PO did all the work and I got lucky at an auction so I can't take any credit for the swap. From looking at things I believe hood/grill/bumper are all that are swapped and fenders are interchangeable? Could be wrong there, but they're damn close if not. Hood is a definite as the headlight bumps aren't there on the Cougar. One thing to note is my front end came from an XR7 from the looks of the body trim that runs the length of the car. Not sure if that's XR7 exclusive, hard to find info on the rando trim pieces from a not-so-popular car. Could be a consideration as far as trim mounting holes if you're taking the fenders.

    If you're looking for Cougar stuff specifically, West Coast Classic Cougars in Oregon and the forum they're linked to could be a good resource. They usually deal with older Cougars, but you never know. Forum may at least be helpful. My dad had a '68 and swore by them as a resource for those cars. I'm sure there is a T-Bird equivalent with their popularity.

    1103191508a_HDR.png
     

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  10. 72GTVA

    72GTVA Administrator Staff Member

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    Looks like a pretty nice build!

    Welcome to the site!
     
  11. handy_andy_cv64

    handy_andy_cv64 In Maximum Overdrive SILVER MEMBER

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    I *FOUND* a '79 Cougar getting parted out. Anybody got a fistful of hundreds they don't need, and are willing to give to me?:D
     
  12. Spencer

    Spencer In First Gear

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    Wish I could find one up in my neck of the woods. The Cougar dash & front seats were swapped into mine, but I'm missing some trim bits.
     
  13. handy_andy_cv64

    handy_andy_cv64 In Maximum Overdrive SILVER MEMBER

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    Where are you located? This Cougar's in South San Antonio.
     
  14. uk ranchero

    uk ranchero In Second Gear

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    i like that
     
  15. handy_andy_cv64

    handy_andy_cv64 In Maximum Overdrive SILVER MEMBER

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    I should've looked at your profile, Spencer. I moved from Everett last January. If you don't mind Pick n Pull's steeply inflated "pull out of our asses" prices, I might be able to secure what trim items you need. Hell, if it's just dash knobs you need, I have extra radio, and a headlight switch, knobs, and perhaps even a right mirror joystick escutcheon.
     
  16. LSChero

    LSChero In Maximum Overdrive PLATINUM MEMBER

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    Dan,will early bird(72)front clip bolt on as well?
    1972_ford_thunderbird-pic-3146797782628012940-640x480.jpeg
     
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  17. handy_andy_cv64

    handy_andy_cv64 In Maximum Overdrive SILVER MEMBER

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    That would be very cool on a Chero. I s'pose, if you have the skills to pay the bills, you could graft it on.
     
  18. Dan the ranchero man

    Dan the ranchero man MODERATOR Staff Member

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    As bad ass as that would look I am afraid not without some extensive fab work. The T-bird is a wider car that the midsize platform. It sits on the same chassis as the Lincoln marks and while they do share some mechanical parts for sure the body not so much . That would fit better on a full size like the LTD. So imagine a 72 LTD wagon with the T-bird front clip from the same year. The bodylines of the full size are what I have seen match the T-bird and Lincoln marks.
     
  19. handy_andy_cv64

    handy_andy_cv64 In Maximum Overdrive SILVER MEMBER

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    Yeah, I wasn't sure. Oh, well.
     
  20. Jimbob

    Jimbob SITE SUPPORTER- SILVER GOLD MEMBER

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    That T bird is sweet.
     

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