1965 Restoration: Should I Modify?

Discussion in 'General Ranchero Help' started by AimlessMoto, Feb 11, 2020.

  1. AimlessMoto

    AimlessMoto In Overdrive

    Messages:
    523
    Location:
    Townsend, MA
    Hey fellas, long time no post.

    My aunt recently decided to give me her 1965 Ranchero. Its Lime Gold, 289, 3spd auto (column), 4bbl Holley, dual exhaust with cherry bombs.

    My uncle did a full restoration about 20 years ago. Paint, interior, engine rebuild, undercoating, and bedliner (unfortunately as it's not factory).

    But the thing is gorgeous, period correct to a 70s/80s daily driver. Bench seat, lap belts, all original stuff... but I'm worried about safety and reliability.

    First thing. She said it ran beautifully but wouldn't start when it was warm. My guess is vapor lock/boiling fuel...

    Second it's not 100% complete, I have all the parts to install, but they're not in yet. Headliner, under-hood insulation, latch handle on the tail gate, some screws missing from the bed trim. Little things.

    Third. It's not completely stock. The grill has been blacked out, there are black stripes on the hood, and it has period rally wheels...

    Lastly (and the worst) it's been sitting for 10 years, in an un-heated barn, on blocks under the axle and subframe. It was 'winterized' by a mechanic she knows. When I went to look at it this last weekend the plug wires were off (guessing they put an oil mist in the cylinders) there were dryer sheets under the air cleaner, there was some oil on the intake (more mist maybe) and the gas tank was emptied, but had a faint smell of varnish.

    So, I'm going to get this thing running and driving again, but am wondering if push comes to shove where should I stop before hurting the over-all value of the truck?

    Must haves:
    Shoulder seatbelts
    Center brake light
    Non-points ignition

    Would like to haves:
    Electric fan
    Electric fuel pump
    Tow hitch
    Vintage air
    Modern distributor, maybe electronic ignition module

    Dream haves:
    EFI (Holley Sniper)


    I think I have a fairly modest list, though over-all expensive. But I feel like the total list would improve upon what the Ranchero is, without pushing it into the realm of swapping the powerplant or suspension.

    Any insight? I will post a build thread once I pick her up!
     
  2. 72GTVA

    72GTVA Administrator Staff Member

    Messages:
    9,770
    Location:
    Chesapeake, VA
    My first thought is regarding the electric fan and electric fuel pump... and my thought is ... why?

    If you aren't having overheating issues (and you won't know until you have run it for a while) should you add to the complexity and further "de-stock" it? (that seems to be an issue from your writing). Same thought with the electric fuel pump - I've run various cars of this era 40+ years and never needed an electric fuel pump.

    Are you planning to daily drive it? Or will this be an enjoyable collectible that you take to show and shines and such?
     
  3. AimlessMoto

    AimlessMoto In Overdrive

    Messages:
    523
    Location:
    Townsend, MA
    It will be a bit of both. Take the wife and kids to icecream, drive it to work on nice days, road trip it when I can, use it for "truck stuff" when needed.

    My concern with the vapor lock issue has me thinking electronic fuel pump, potentially with return, but possibly a phenolic spacer could solve that problem, and maybe heat wrapping the fuel line from the pump to the carb.

    Removal of the mechanical fan was simply in thought of horsepower gain, but also in cleaning up the engine bay. No shroud on the fan as it sits, kinda dangerous when wrenching.

    Open to ideas on what not to do. Mainly looking to keep it turn-key reliable when it finally gets up and running... but maybe that wont be an issue! Just checking to see IF I modify, will it hurt the over-all value as a classic?
     
  4. 72GTVA

    72GTVA Administrator Staff Member

    Messages:
    9,770
    Location:
    Chesapeake, VA
    Unless it were to be almost concours correct as it sits now (and you've already stated that it isn't) you can be very confident in making the changes that you feel are needed to further your enjoyment and peace of mind for safety. I think you've pretty much outlined some good thoughts for improvements. On my cars that were close to original I made changes in a manner that they could be removed and restore originality if that is what I wanted to do. That process also prevented me from hacking a dash to install a "better" radio. I'd probably carefully install the upgrades you're suggesting with a view of being able to back them out without having to spend a million Rancherobuck$$$$$$$$$$ to get it back to original if that is what you have in mind for later. JMO, YMMV.
     
  5. AimlessMoto

    AimlessMoto In Overdrive

    Messages:
    523
    Location:
    Townsend, MA
    Agreed. I wasn't planning on body mods or dash-hacking. Hell, if it's got a V8 and glass-packs there's no point in a radio anyway. :)
     
  6. TestDummy

    TestDummy In Maximum Overdrive SILVER MEMBER

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    Maybe if you put a 5.0 Coyote mated to a 6-speed in it, with 4 wheel independent suspension and a full custom leather interior, you could break even at an auction. If you did the work yourself.
     
  7. 1979 RANCHERO GT

    1979 RANCHERO GT In Overdrive

    Messages:
    955
    I think you forgot the most important modification, unless it was already been done. Switch the brakes to a dual reservoir system. One leak and you got no brakes. It would stop better with front discs but I left both my 66 Mustangs with front drums. For normal driving the drums do fine.
     
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  8. handy_andy_cv64

    handy_andy_cv64 In Maximum Overdrive SILVER MEMBER

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    As far as 'driveability' goes, full drums requires someone with much more experience than normal nowadays to maintain front discs properly. Any misadjustment, and it pulls, and pulls hard, to one side. If you're going the restomod distance for safety, for Pete's sake, invest in front discs, and modernized hydraulics. Any '70s Granada parts should fit without modification. As for the hot no-start, it's more likely a bad coil, but swapping to electronic ignition will remove that from the equation. And remember, with points ignition, as they wear, the dwell and timing retard, which could cause more underhood heat. So once you swap in an electronic ignition and confirm the timing is properly set, the hot no-start may go away.
     
  9. AimlessMoto

    AimlessMoto In Overdrive

    Messages:
    523
    Location:
    Townsend, MA
    Oh! Yes. It has a dual master, power booster, and front disc. The car was built for my aunt, so most of the big stuff like brakes and suspension were completely gone through and upgraded.

    See above about the brakes. Good thinking on the points and coil. They were new 20 years ago when she was actively driving it and had these issues, but doesn't mean they couldn't be at fault.
     
  10. Rods N Restos

    Rods N Restos In Fourth Gear

    Messages:
    430
    Location:
    South Jersey
    Cheap way to go is do Pertronix electronic pick up in the stock points distributor.
    Just keep a new set of points and tools to swap it back in glove boxes or behind seat as I have heard on occasion the Pertronix fail and leave you disabled and needing a tow.
    On the most part they are reliable.

    Adding safer 3 point seatbelts is a great upgrade as in 1974 the Ranchero was upgraded to 3 point seatbelts from factory.
    You can buy aftermarket 3 point seatbelts and I have done the install on classic car and fairly simple.
    Purchase the Hardware kit and it comes with a plate to weld to roof interior for the Sash guide anchor point.
    Just order for bench seat and choose color and buckle style you like
    https://www.wescoperformance.com/3poresebewil.html
     
    Last edited: Feb 12, 2020
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  11. Boiler92

    Boiler92 In Third Gear

    Messages:
    191
    Location:
    Indiana
    Center brake light? Shoulder strap? Front disc?

    You forgot ABS and airbags.

    Just kidding. We need some pics.
     
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  12. beerbelly

    beerbelly In Maximum Overdrive SILVER MEMBER

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    I must say that I really enjoy the difference between my 55 year old '65 Ranchero and my wife's 2017 Honda Fit, but wouldn't want to upgrade the '65 to something it wasn't built to be- a light, fun hauler. It's exactly what I need to haul stuff around. It's been upgraded similar to your plans, with front discs, dual master cylinder, front suspension rebuild, Pertronix ignition and subframe connectors, stuff that makes it a better, safer daily driver. I don't worry at all about it being "correct" or "collectible"- it just puts a smile on my face every time I drive it, which is almost every day. Don't worry, be happy.
     
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  13. handy_andy_cv64

    handy_andy_cv64 In Maximum Overdrive SILVER MEMBER

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    Mmmmm, for that body design, subframe connectors are a very good idea.
     
  14. PonyExpressRider

    PonyExpressRider In Maximum Overdrive

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    have been told by more then one person... it don't matter if you go stock or restomod, the value is about the same. Especially with Ranchero's... make it yours!
     
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  15. neil brown

    neil brown In Second Gear

    Messages:
    93
    Location:
    UK
    I understand that alot of people run drums still, and are fine. Mine came with discs, so i couldnt comment. I guess shoulder belts are a good idea, third brake light, well, there's alot of stupid people out there, it may help. My truck is a 6 with a c4, powersteering,and discs, lap belts, everything else is stock, and is great. I use it as much as I can
     
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  16. AimlessMoto

    AimlessMoto In Overdrive

    Messages:
    523
    Location:
    Townsend, MA
    Thanks! I'm sure there will be more or less done to it sooner or later. Decided the goal for the year will be to get it running and driving as it sits, then decide after the fall if I want to change anything. Unless there is a huge safety concern, then I'll handle it immediately.
     
  17. AimlessMoto

    AimlessMoto In Overdrive

    Messages:
    523
    Location:
    Townsend, MA
    Alright. I officially took some pics and got a good look at everything. Shes a driver. Drum brakes, single cylinder mc, wheels are rusty, and the paint isn't the best job.

    SOOOO... I don't feel so bad upgrading and modifying it going forward.

    20200221_171416.jpg 20200221_171435.jpg 20200221_171446.jpg 20200221_171511.jpg 20200221_171516.jpg 20200221_171523.jpg 20200221_171615.jpg 20200221_171634.jpg 20200221_171659.jpg 20200221_171801.jpg
     
  18. AimlessMoto

    AimlessMoto In Overdrive

    Messages:
    523
    Location:
    Townsend, MA
    And some more...

    20200221_171809.jpg 20200221_171854.jpg 20200221_171921.jpg
     
  19. AimlessMoto

    AimlessMoto In Overdrive

    Messages:
    523
    Location:
    Townsend, MA
    Also ran the VIN through Hagerty, it's a 1965 289 Deluxe model. Only listed 2bbl options... but this has a 4bbl Holley.

    Unfortunately those stripes are painted over the clear and my uncle did a bit of a hack job, he cut into the paint in multiple places where he trimmed the masking, and they aren't very attractive.

    20200221_171435.jpg
     
  20. beerbelly

    beerbelly In Maximum Overdrive SILVER MEMBER

    Messages:
    2,646
    Location:
    Portland OR
    That looks like an excellent start to real nice Ranchero. Just needs some elbow grease, a battery and a headliner (I think). I have some doubts whether it's a Deluxe model though; it's missing the side trim and the Deluxe dash. You might want to contact the Ford Customer Relationship Center to confirm; have all the info from the door data plate ready. I did that a few years ago and got a prompt response.

    ☎ Call the Customer Relationship Center (CRC) at 1-800-392-FORD(3673) or visit ford.com for assistance
     
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