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66-96 Ford Broncos - Early & Full Size


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About famvburg

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    Bronco Mechanic
  1. Back in April my beloved '69 EB jumped out of gear and rolled down my driveway, collided with a tree then rolled down into a gulley. At least it stayed upright on all fours. Anyway, the damage incurred is the bed floor is bowed, the left rear fender is crumpled, the rear bumper is bent and broken at its attachment points, the driver door is bent and the door post is slightly bent. The frame is apparently out of alignment (at the crossmembers, but not actually bent). The windshield is also cracked. The panel behind the seats is bent also, but not too bad. I didn't have the half cab on, so it survived otherwise it would've gotten busted. It can still be driven, tho not comfortably, I use it around the yard and use the winch. Insurance doesn't cover it since I had everything but collision coverage and even if I did have collision coverage, but not as an antique, I wouldn't have gotten much anyway. Now, my dilemma. It was my late dad's and I got it when he died a few years ago and fixed it up, probably put $3K - $4K in it including a just under $2K paint job. Don't get me wrong, but if I hadn't inherited it, I wouldn't have gone out and bought an EB, much less to fix up. If that were the case, I'd probably have gotten an old Toyota Land Cruiser or maybe a Jeep, but I like EBs anyway and this one was already mine. Now, I also don't 'need' an EB, but I do think a 4WD and winch come in handy and I like driving topless as well. This body repair is way over my head and capabilities. if at was an airplane I'd be undaunted, but, it's not. I found a '68 with a decent body and uncut fenders, which mine is uncut and I don't want cut fenders. Time and money wise, all of the '68's problems would be just as expensive. (Engine work, wiring's been gutted, needs floorboards and seats as well as putting the front of the body back together. Plus, being painted). The guy wants $2800 for it and some extra body parts. I've had one body shop guy and a couple of other so-so body folks say the best way to go is cut the rear halves off of mine and the '68 and put the '68 bed on mine as one big section. The driver door is a simple swap and straightening the door post is probably not bad. windshield is straghtforward too. Problem is, I'm looking at somewhere between $6K - $7K total, including the '68 purchase and new paint job. All of the parts except the windshield can come from the '68 except for a few odds n' ends. I figure I can sell the leftovers from the '68, which has a 289 V-8, a PTO winch some typical EB odds n' ends. Heck, someone could probably get it running and make a flatbed out of it for running around their hunting camp. Never the less, I could recoup 'some' of the expense money. So, should I go to the expense of repairing mine or sell IT as is and look elsewhere for an already decent EB or as previously mentioned, maybe a Jeep or a Land Cruiser? If selling mine as-is, maybe for running around camp, what might it be worth? As for a 4WD and winch, I can get a decent, used 4WD pick-up with a winch for what it can cost to fix my EB, or even a good bit less, but it won't have the class of an EB! Thanks for the read and any input.
  2. This morning while at my new(er) house to measure a room, my '69 EB appears to have jumped out of 1st gear & the parking brake didn't hold & it rolled backwards down the driveway/hill, side-swiped a tree which ripped off the rear bumper, crushed the driver side rear fender from the tail light forward. Busted it & crinkled it pretty bad. It shoved the rear quarter panel/fender forward which shoved the driver door forward, tho it didn't make it to the front fender. The bed floor is somewhat bent/bowed & the half cab bulkhead is very slightly bent. No doubt it could be straightened. The driver side fender well also bought it as well as the tail gate. I'm thinking the bed itself could be flattened, the door & tailgate simply replaced, but the quarter panel/fender is the big issue IMO. I found most if not all of the parts at Tom's, but can I readily get the entire rear half of the body, i.e., the bed portion or would it be that much trouble to just buy all the parts & pieces & weld up the new fender section? While it looks pretty bad, in the big picture it doesn't look all that bad to repair. I haven't met with the insurance adjuster yet either. I'm wondering if they see it as 1969 Ford Truck & it's worth maybe $150 or it's a 1969 EB that is (was) in nice shape & it's worth $5,000, but that's between me & State farm I reckon. Anyway, a lot of my decision will depend on the outcome with the adjuster, but for now, any suggestions on repairing my baby would be appreciated. Thanks.
  3. School bus seat? That's what we used in our early '70s one back then & what I started to use in my current '69 until I swapped it over to a half cab.
  4. Our winter in Ms hasn't been too bad so I've left my half cab top off. I saw the post about soft tops & I got started looking around for a half cab soft top. I think that would be the neatest thing, a cloth half cab. All I ever see is a bikini top, which would be fine in summer, but I'd just as soon go topless as opposed to a bikini top. Anyway, is or was there such a thing as a soft top for half cabs? My apologies if this has been brought up before but whomever conjured up the search restriction on more than 4 letters in each word fouls up searches for, well, 4 letter or less words..... What up with that anyway???? Thanks.
  5. I can take a pic or two. No in-progress pics as I hadn't planned it as a how-to. I'll see what I can do before long.
  6. My '69 EB has the long tapered dash knobs instead of the short round flat-faced ones. About 3 of mine were missing the concave center. I wasn't sure if they could be removed or how much trouble they'd be if they could. I was doing some dash refurb & really wanted the centers in them. I took some spackling & packed it into the opening. I then took a 1/4" stainless carriage bolt, (Stainless 'cause the head was smooth & 1/4" 'cause the head seems to be the perfect size & shape.) & wet the head in water & pressed it in Anyway, it pressed the excess out & I packed in some more & repeated. Keep the head wet & use a twisting motion as you press & remove. Repeat until it looks right. Wipe off the excess & let it dry. Clean it up with a damp rag & fill in any blemishes using the bolt head again. finally, after it's dry again, clean it up with some fine sandpaper or maybe a Scotchbrite pad, tho I used the sandpaper. Seal it off with some super glue & a brush or any other clear sealer of choice. My restored ones are a bit whiter than the others, but they all could be touched with a dab of paint to make them all match. Anyway, I think my 3 restored ones look real fine, definitely better than no centers at all. I thought I'd post this in case anyone else could try it.
  7. My '69 EB has no cut-out for a radio, yet has the grill for the speaker. When I started fixing it up a few years ago & was ready to put in a radio, I couldn't bear to cut into the original uncut dash. I bought one of those plastic under-dash radio mounts & put it under the dash but mounted the speaker in the original grill. Well, over the years I've decided I want to cut the dash & move the radio there. I'm not concerned about the appearance, I figure I can do as well as anyone since I do cutouts like that on airplanes regularly. Any opinions on if, as long as it looks 'professional', it'll have any real affect on its overall value? Not that I'm really concerned about that either, as long as the radio is where the factory would put it & it looks good. Thanks.
  8. I was wondering about blow-by, but my dad rebuilt the engine several years ago & it doesn't seem to use much oil. It certainly doesn't have many miles on it. I haven't checked the compression tho. I did some surfing & found a later replacement valve cover that looks like it uses a twist-on oil cap. It's about $30 & chrome to boot. I run a couple of airport refuelers with 370s in them & they use a twist-on oil cap with a breather hose on it. That may be the simple answer there as I don't plan to tear it down & do a ring job no more than I drive it. I hate to disagree with you, but in my near 30 years of being an airplane mechanic, I've never heard of a breather being an INLET. It's an OUTLET for crankcase pressure. Unless we're talking about 2 different things but calling them breathers. If I change the valve cover, that's definitely the time to check the drain too. I didn't even realize this old of an engine used a PCV valve either, so I'll give that a check. Thanks.
  9. My '69 EB with the 170 CID straight 6 has an oil filler cap that also acts as the breather for the crankcase. Problem is, it causes oil to get on my valve cover on down. Not bad, but bad enough. I'm wondering if anyone has come up with a way to make a separate breather tube or if there's an aftermarket available. I've got an idea to make something, but if there's a better idea already available, I'd rather do that. Thanks for any input.
  10. My '69 EB had the 'full wheel' hub caps, which I suppose is the normal ones for EBs. My dad had them on it but when I started fixing it up, I took them off. I always kinda liked the looks of EBs without hub caps. I recently started thinking of putting them back on & started wondering if these hub caps were ever used on any '60s or so Ford pick ups or anything. EBs are the only things I think I've ever seen them on. I've seen some with a center type of hub cap that I know I've seen on pick ups, in fact in the early '80s I had a '74 Chevy 4WD pick up that had some. Just curious as to how unique EB hub caps really are.
  11. Not long after I posted this, I dropped the rear shaft & between preparing for the Great Miss. River Flood of 2011, work, & summer temps getting really hot, I drove around with the front axle locked in. With slightly better temps last week, I tore into my CV joint. The u-joints are fine, but the 'bearing cup' that rieds inside the assembly was gone. GONE completely! There as one little piece of spring left. The 'pin' that fits in it is a little scarred, but that was all. Anyway, I replaced the spring & cup & put everything back together. I'm just surprised that what came apart did so.
  12. Another thought might be rivnuts as we call them in the airplane business. I think in other places they're known as rivet nuts or threaded inserts. Don't know if you can get them in 5/16" thread or bigger. I know the biggest I've seen is 1/4" thread.
  13. In case I missed something, sorry, but check for battery voltage at the F (field) wire at the regulator with the switch on. If you have voltage there, with the regulator unplugged, jump the A & F terminals in the connector. Start the engine. If the alternator's working, the amp gauge should peg out. If the amp gauge doesn't peg out, the alternator isn't working. If it does, then the regulator's bad. If nothing happens, both are probably bad. Jumping the A & F simply bypasses the regulator. One thing I learned many, many years ago with electrical stuff. If you don't know for a fact used stuff is good, don't use it. That'll save a lot of headaches.
  14. According to all my papers & the VIN, my EB is a '69. The manufacturer info starts with an E, so that also indicates a '69, right? Anyway, I had read that in '69 electric wipers were introduced. Then, the other day while reading the Bronco history thread, I read that in '69 the folding windshield was eliminated. (I never understood having a folding windshield but still having 2 door frames sticking up. What's up with that anyway?) Anyway, my '69 had vacuum wipers til I replaced them with an electric set. Mine also has (or had) a folding windshield. Well, it's hinged & has the big locking bolts, but the hinge was so stiff something would come apart if it was folded, (I tried it when I was going to replace the seal), it was just too stiff, so when I had it painted, I had the hinge area sealed with Panel Bond so it wouldn't leak. So, what's up with my '69? Was it a '68 1/2? Late '68? Early '69?? I wonder what else it has in common with '68s but not '69s.
  15. Ironically, JBG is where these came from. I'll just hope I got a bad one this time, 'cause regardless of how easy they are to change, I don't think I should have to change them in such a short time.
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