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1966 Ford Galaxie 500 7-Litre Restoration Thread

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On 4/22/2016 at 10:45 AM, GARY F said:

Outstanding. I enjoy watching the progress.

 

Thank you!   We're glad you enjoy the story, it's slower in real life, but fun to share!

 

On 4/22/2016 at 11:13 AM, keiser31 said:

Fantastic looking!!

 

On 4/24/2016 at 7:14 PM, 95Cardinal said:

Beautiful work!

 

Thank you for the kind words!

 

4 hours ago, Wildcat65 said:

Beauty work.  I just purchased a project 7 Litre off ebay, hope it is not hiding all those problems!

If it is, well now I know where to send it.  Cheers, 

 

 

Ha, hopefully yours is clean!   They are very cool cars.    We wish you the best of luck with it... parts can be tricky to find!

 

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This one started to look like a car again once the body was mounted back on the frame.

 

1966_Ford_7L_GT_06.24.15_070.JPG

 

New bushings and hardware were used to ensure a safe car, and also to restore proper panel alignment.

 

1966_Ford_7L_GT_06.24.15_071.JPG

 

1966_Ford_7L_GT_06.24.15_077.JPG
 

Edited by V8TV (see edit history)
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The metalwork wasn’t quite over yet, as the battery tray and inner fenders required attention.  Here, we made a new insert for the battery tray. 

 

1966_Ford_7L_GT_06.29.15_078.JPG

 

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An odd-shaped mounting hole was restored on the inner fender:

 

1966_Ford_7L_GT_06.29.15_080.JPG

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8 hours ago, steveimpala said:

Fantastic work! I really enjoy looking at the progress.

Thank you Steve!   Kind of you to say.  

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In 1984 while in college my very dear friend Bill loved his '66 7-litre coupe, as he called it.  It was emberglo with a cream-white top.  It had no rust but did have a few small dents and well weathered paint.  Bill worked nights and weekends at a movie theater to help fund a paint job.  Bill was a brilliant Engineering Physics major but he suffered greatly from cystic fibrosis.  One summer, Bill went to do intern work in Flint MIchigan but he left the car in Oklahoma.  Unbeknownst to Bill, his older brother and I began our work to straighten and repaint that car.  With many paint jobs under my belt in my uncle's shop, we were easily able to finish it and surprised him upon his return that fall.  That horrible disease soon took my friend away and I never knew the fate of that car.  

 

You never know who you are going to touch and in what way.  Your project is special to me because it brings back memories of my friend and I love seeing this work done right.  

 

Thank you!

Joel

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I love seeing this as it is being done. Your attention to what seems the smallest detail is awesome. I have followed this post for a long time, and it has made me wish this caliber of restoration was more affordable. I know time and expertise are costly and I completely understand it. I am jealous of the person having this done, I wish it was within my means to do it as well. Again, your work and craftsmanship is outstanding, that's one lucky car to have your guys restoring it. 

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On 5/25/2016 at 8:53 PM, JoelsBuicks said:

In 1984 while in college my very dear friend Bill loved his '66 7-litre coupe, as he called it.  It was emberglo with a cream-white top.  It had no rust but did have a few small dents and well weathered paint.  Bill worked nights and weekends at a movie theater to help fund a paint job.  Bill was a brilliant Engineering Physics major but he suffered greatly from cystic fibrosis.  One summer, Bill went to do intern work in Flint MIchigan but he left the car in Oklahoma.  Unbeknownst to Bill, his older brother and I began our work to straighten and repaint that car.  With many paint jobs under my belt in my uncle's shop, we were easily able to finish it and surprised him upon his return that fall.  That horrible disease soon took my friend away and I never knew the fate of that car.  

 

You never know who you are going to touch and in what way.  Your project is special to me because it brings back memories of my friend and I love seeing this work done right.  

 

Thank you!

Joel

 

Great story Joel!   Thanks for sharing that with us.   You're correct, these old cars are truly time machines and can bring back all kinds of memories.   I'm glad ours was able to rekindle some good times with your buddy.     Thanks for the kind words!

 

On 5/29/2016 at 11:47 AM, edhd58 said:

I love seeing this as it is being done. Your attention to what seems the smallest detail is awesome. I have followed this post for a long time, and it has made me wish this caliber of restoration was more affordable. I know time and expertise are costly and I completely understand it. I am jealous of the person having this done, I wish it was within my means to do it as well. Again, your work and craftsmanship is outstanding, that's one lucky car to have your guys restoring it. 

 

Thank you very much!    It's important to have a crew that cares about the details.    They do make all the difference.    Unfortunately, these jobs require a lot of time, and that makes them out of reach for many.    However, we're glad to share as much as we can through forums like this with those who appreciate the work and want to go along for a free ride!

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With the body back on the frame and the underside completed, it was time to approach the bodywork on the topside.     The car was rolled into the body shop department.

 

The roof already had some filler and sanding work done from being on the rotisserie.    The crew installed the front sheetmetal, as well as the doors and decklid to establish a good fit.

 

1966_Ford_7L_GT_09.09.15_113.JPG

 

The rear decklid filler panel received some lead work to fill the original seam.

 

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1966_Ford_7L_GT_09.09.15_114.JPG

 

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Craig scuffed the epoxy and began the filler process on the Galaxie’s panels.

 

1966_Ford_7L_GT_09.17.15_120.JPG

 

1966_Ford_7L_GT_09.17.15_121.JPG

 

A car like this can receive several coats of body filler from end-to-end, with the vast majority being sanded off with each refining grade of sandpaper.      Note the various size sanding blocks to get the panels straight.  

 

Here, the rear section is spread and sanded, with tape to keep the filler out of the trunk lid seam.

 

1966_Ford_7L_GT_09.17.15_122.JPG

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The factory quarter seams were filled with lead like the original installation, then body filler was applied to refine the shape.

 

1966_Ford_7L_GT_09.17.15_123.JPG

 

More sanding… (there’s a lot of sanding on a car this big!)

 

1966_Ford_7L_GT_09.28.15_124.JPG

 

1966_Ford_7L_GT_09.28.15_126.JPG

 

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Beautiful work, Kevin. Your people are craftsmen, without a doubt. Bravo!

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These guys really separate the men from the boys in sheet metal fab and repair.  Outstanding work!

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On 6/3/2016 at 1:35 PM, topblissgt said:

Beautiful work, Kevin. Your people are craftsmen, without a doubt. Bravo!

 

On 6/4/2016 at 5:51 AM, MikeC5 said:

These guys really separate the men from the boys in sheet metal fab and repair.  Outstanding work!

 

Thank you for the kind words, a top-notch crew makes all the difference!

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Spread filler and sand filler… the life of a bodyman.   Every panel on the car will be massaged.  

 

1966_Ford_7L_GT_09.28.15_129.JPG

 

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Craig spreads the filler and “roughs it in” with 80 grit with an air file board, then hand block-sands with 180 grit, reapplying filler where needed.     Once the car is in a uniform 180 grit finish, he moves to 320 grit on a Dual Action sander to prep the panels for several coats of high-solids primer.    Then the car is hand-dressed with 320 right before primer.  

 

1966_Ford_7L_GT_09-30-15_0474.JPG

 

Much of the filler left on the car is paper-thin.. Or less.   

 

1966_Ford_7L_GT_10-02-15_0456.JPG

 

A variety of tools in play… sanding blocks in various shapes, different grits of 3M sand paper, a steel spreader, and Evercoat body filler.   The 3M tape keeps the filler out of holes and seams.

 

1966_Ford_7L_GT_10-06-15_0507.JPG

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Wow, I am impressed.  What a first class job.  How many hours did it take Craig and crew to do all the prep work?  Craig must just love sanding work.  

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I just discovered this thread, and it brought back memories of the only 7 Litre that I had ever seen.  It was in Milwaukee at City Motors on north 37th street and Wisconsin avenue in the early seventies.  This lot was sort of known for having "beat to death" but rather reasonably priced performance cars.  This particular 7Litre was dark blue exterior with white vinyl top and white bucket seat interior  with a four speed and console.  It didn't appear to be in all that bad of condition as I recall.

 

 

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Guest BillP

I don't know much about bodywork, so this may seem like a stupid question. Isn't the steel straight; or, said another way, why does all this bondo-work have to be done to make it look straight? 

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That is a great question.     The panels are relatively straight, but they suffer from many imperfections... hammer dings, grinder marks, welding warpage or other little items that will become big imperfections once shiny paint is applied.     

 

We produced a 3-part mini series on myths and benefits and how-to's of body filler... you can see it here:  

 

http://v8tvshow.com/V8TV_2/index.php/tech/body-paint/9-body-filler-magic-bullet-or-easy-way-out-3-part-video-series

 

Filler is not your enemy, but it's not the magic bullet, either.    We make sure the panels fit properly in bare steel, then refine the surfaces with filler.    

 

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Once the initial filler and blocking work are done, the car is vacuumed / blown out and cleaned, then it heads into the paint booth for masking and priming.

 

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1966_Ford_7L_GT_10-12-15_0470.JPG

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