64 Fairlane Strut Front Suspension Conversion Its Done! JIT for the bash!

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Post  512Fairlane on April 3rd 2011, 10:44 pm

We got a late start this year but we are in the process of updating my 64 Fairlane to Fox Body Struts. After 15 years of racing this thing we decided it was time to make it easier to work on and improve the header clearance. I'm using Strange struts with their coil over kit, Mustang II tubular lower a-arms from Speedway, Ford Escort rear steer rack and pinion, my existing Granada spindles and disk brakes, UPR caster camber plates, and some custom made pieces. We will be trimming the shock towers back even more than they already are. Removing the upper a-arms and their mounts should free up a lot of space to build new headers with less cramped bends out of the port. Here are some before pictures along with some of the A-arm mounts and strut rod mock up pictures.

http://www.flickr.com/photos/512fairlane/sets/72157626306943107/with/5591181882/


Last edited by 512Fairlane on July 31st 2011, 11:21 pm; edited 9 times in total
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Post  res0rli9 on April 3rd 2011, 11:44 pm

How do ya get the pic's get bigger???........There so small I cant see anything scratch

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Post  512Fairlane on April 3rd 2011, 11:55 pm

I'm not sure but I'll try to figure it out tomorrow night.
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Post  res0rli9 on April 4th 2011, 12:03 am

K

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Post  512Fairlane on April 4th 2011, 11:28 pm

Photobucket wasn't working for me. Try the Flikr link above. It has larger pictures.
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Post  '65 T-BOLT on April 5th 2011, 12:21 am

Mike....looks good! What size tire are you running on the front of the Fairlane?
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Post  512Fairlane on April 5th 2011, 9:28 pm

Hoosier 27.0 x 4.5 -15. They clear the fenders much better than the Moroso 28 x 7.10 x 15 Drag specials that I used to run. The Morosos rubbed the fender when turning occasionally.
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Post  jcoxracing on April 5th 2011, 10:17 pm

Don't worry Mike take your time, Gateway won't be open for at least another year or so. Good Luck with the swap.
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Post  512Fairlane on April 5th 2011, 10:30 pm

Yeah that is one of the reasons we went ahead and started on it this late. When I found out I couldn't make the bash this year there weren't too many early races that I had to be at. I'm hoping to have it ready for the Nostalgia race in July at Kansas City. I don't think we'll have any problem making that one.
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Post  512Fairlane on April 17th 2011, 10:40 pm

The old man has been making some progress. Here are a few more pics. Suspension is almost done. Still need to finish caster plates and mount the rack and pinion. Then we will pull the motor out, cut the towers back and remove some more brackets near the headers. Then put the motor back in and build the headers. So far we have saved 22 lbs!

http://www.flickr.com/photos/512fairlane/sets/72157626396370547/with/5629949370/
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Post  '65 T-BOLT on April 18th 2011, 11:44 am

Mike, Its looking good! I like the spindles!...Damn your Fairlane is CLEAN!
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Post  512Fairlane on April 18th 2011, 10:02 pm

'65 T-BOLT wrote:Mike, Its looking good! I like the spindles!...Damn your Fairlane is CLEAN!

Thanks Jason. The paint under the hood has held up fairly well for being raced for 15 years. I almost hate to have to repaint it all but I don't think I'll be happy with it if we just try to touch up around the shock towers. Lots of work yet to do.
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Post  '65 T-BOLT on April 18th 2011, 11:30 pm

Mike, as a side note...you might want to run a brace from tower to tower....aka montecarlo bar like shelby did in the mustangs...My shock towers started to collapse....then again..I did not have the rear braces in place...its just alot of load/force on the towers...just a thought!...Jason
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Post  512Fairlane on April 20th 2011, 10:23 pm

Jason when we first cut the towers back we noticed that they flexed in with the weight of the 460. We added 2 square tubes that run from the fire wall to the core support. They are directly under the upper fender bolts. In fact the fender bolts run through the tubes. The tubes were welded to the inner fenders and the towers. They stiffened things up a lot and prevent the flex. And you can't see them unless you look up under the fenders.

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Post  '65 T-BOLT on April 20th 2011, 11:37 pm

cool idea Mike!
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Post  512Fairlane on April 22nd 2011, 8:18 pm

Jason we bolted everything on today and the ride height came out perfect. I think the spring rate will be right on. We are still working on the steering but it seems to be working out well. What universal joint did you use to attach to your column? My column is not splined it has a rag joint adaptor. Was yours splined from the factory or did you change shafts? Thanks, Mike
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Post  '65 T-BOLT on April 23rd 2011, 11:55 am

512Fairlane wrote:Jason we bolted everything on today and the ride height came out perfect. I think the spring rate will be right on. We are still working on the steering but it seems to be working out well. What universal joint did you use to attach to your column? My column is not splined it has a rag joint adaptor. Was yours splined from the factory or did you change shafts? Thanks, Mike
Mike, we cut the rag joint off and welded a universal joint to it...(round to double D)....you will have to put a bearing in the end of the column to support the shaft (either buy or build). When did my buddies Falcon, we bought one from Total Control Products...a branch of Chassis Engineering,they show it listed in catalog several different ways to buy, I called and just bought the bearing...price???? don't remember..I believe it was under 75... We also cut the about 2-3" off the column cover. The TCP bearing goes over the outside of the column, mine slipped inside the column. and at the rac, whar ever spline count you have to the DD shaft. Good Luck! Post some pictures! Jason
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Post  512Fairlane on April 23rd 2011, 8:02 pm

Ok thanks Jason. From your pictures it looked like your steering shaft had splines on the end. We were planning the same thing only I may machine some flats on the shaft to use a double d/double d universal. I'll post some more pics soon.
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Post  512Fairlane on April 23rd 2011, 8:51 pm

Made some more progress. Assembled the suspension so we can set the car down and remove the engine. We are still working on the rack mounts and steering shaft but everything else is done. Need to remove the motor and cut the towers back. Then repaint and detail everything. Note that switching from the stock steering gear and drag link to the Escort rack is going to save 20 lbs. bringing the total savings to 42 lbs. so far.

http://www.flickr.com/photos/512fairlane/sets/72157626562726602/


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Post  Nevs on April 23rd 2011, 9:19 pm

Link didn't work for me...
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Post  512Fairlane on April 23rd 2011, 9:56 pm

My bad try that one again. I think I fixed it.
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Post  Nevs on April 23rd 2011, 10:08 pm

Much better! Looking good! Cool
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Post  '65 T-BOLT on April 24th 2011, 1:04 am

outstanding fabrication Mike! I like the caster camber plate set up...going under the tower! I had Hotchkis on my set up
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Post  512Fairlane on April 24th 2011, 1:25 am

Thanks. The UPR plates were going to be a little high on top of the tower plus they didn't look as clean as underneath. Your Hotchkins plates were a much cleaner set up. I had also read about the plates bending from big wheel stands over time so just in case some day I pull big wheel stands we put them underneath. Very Happy
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Post  '65 T-BOLT on April 24th 2011, 1:39 am

your right about bending, I was going to go with the UPR plates..if I kept this set up. From my understanding Charlie Booze bent the tops of his towers in his Hot Street Mustang a few years back. I decided I want the towers completely gone in my car. Thought about strait axle gasser set up with my 65. But I want to enjoy this car in a few years...when I put it back on the streets, so it will be a custom design M2 set up
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