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The same summer ('04) we were building the van frame and getting close to perform the body swap, I realized I might need another vehicle to drive since there would definitely be many little obstacles to set us back and make the transformation take much longer. I wanted something cheap and yet reliable (a Ford of course) to get me to school and wherever else until the van gets finished. Well in out neighborhood down the street from us, an older man was trying to sell his truck a few years back. A Texas truck: 1977 F-150 4x2 with a 460 in it. Being a Texas truck it did not have much rust and had a neat orange color. At the time we thought nothing of it and passed on it. Two years later in '04 the truck was still in his backyard with the for sale sticker in the rear window. I gave him a holler and we struck up a deal.
Above is what the truck looked like upon bringing it home. This truck is the Lariat for its time. It is the Ranger XLT package and has A/C, cruise, and lots of trim. Notice the rare "RaceTrak" trim option. The drivetrain is the neat 460 V8 to a C6 automatic and then the 31 spline 2.75:1 9" axle.
The previous owner did not take good care of this truck in any way. Wires were spliced everywhere, bare wires, even mystery wires that were added and made you wonder where they go. The truck was stolen at some point because the ignition switch was completely cut out and was cheaply repaired by using wire nuts. The engine is a whole 'nother story. The kid that owned it tried to make it a "race" truck by adding some parts to the engine, such as a highly radical cam, flat top pistons and older Lincoln 460 heads. Only problem is none of the parts matched for the powerband the truck would actually see. So it was a sluggish piece of junk that pinged and ran hot all the time (later we found the thermostat was hardly working since it was bent). Makes you wonder why we bought it? Well the body had hardly any dents, and very little rust since it was originally a Texas truck.
But the more I started investigating things, the more I noticed was rigged from the previous owner. So began a full off restoration like the van. However this is now and the van will have to wait for its turn, so in the meantime I will have something to drive. The beauty of this restoration is that when we are finished, we will have yet another Ford of some value and rarity.
Follow the links below to see more information.
Frame and Drivetrain
UPDATE: late summer of 2011 it has been decided to use the cab and bed on our 1978 F-250 4x4. Not much time and effort was spent on the '77 2wd rolling chassis so it was a no-brainer! It has taken a lot of work to get the cab and bed fixed up. Might as well put it to good use and make one decent truck! Anyone need a nice 1977 F-150 rolling chassis?
Go to the F-250 page for the build up!