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Old 09-12-2006, 10:26 AM   #267
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1966 26' Overlander
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Paul,

Some of the sway is induced when towing because of the rear end squat. This creates a smaller tire contact patch for the front tires and road varaiations start having an impact on the way the front tires follow the road. Also Ford's power steering system was not precise for those years and contributes to that issue. Getting the rear end up will help bunches!

Since you have leaf springs in the rear, installing any sway bar in the rear will yield little to no difference. And it will be difficult because it will be a total fabrication job. The leaf spring/solid rear axle set up does a pretty good job with controlling sway out of the rear. The front is a different story. It is independant suspension with a very small sway bar for the forces that are applied. If you want to spend money do it there with a bigger bar.

Getting the rear of that car up will yield you the biggest results! The stock set up was designed for a cushy ride with a very soft feel. I would recommend a couple of things. 1) Get the most HD shock you can find for all 4 corners. This will dampen movement all around. 2) Get added help in raising that rear end when a load is applied. That means different springing for the rear. This would be in the form of helper springs or added leaves for the rear. Your current ride height is good when not towing. It's the load when towing that is suffering. Changing to a springs is a harder job than air shocks. Air shock are not recommended. And that is exactly what I have done for 18 years. I will some times fly in the face of the warnings and factory suggestions. Usually to save a buck or two. In this case I have had air shocks on two tow vehicles, both Ford vans. One listed below. The biggest air shock issue I have had is a line popping off or a plastic line getting too close to the exhaust and getting a hole in it. Nothing else! It is very convient to adjust air pressure to the load. I also tow a 7500 # boat, so my Overlander at 5000 # is not the biggest load the van sees. 3) Make sure the tires that you are using are inflated to max and are rated to do the job of the load. That is 1/4 the weight of the fully loaded car. And 1/2 of the tongue weight on each rear tire. PLUS a 10% margin factor. I like the 14's that came with that ride. I would do everything I could to keep the 14's provided I could find a tire that could take the total load. 4) Lastly do the bigger sway bar up front.

Hope this helps. From a former '64 Galaxie 500 owner. I had 4 of them.

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Old 09-12-2006, 09:10 PM   #268
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1960 24' Tradewind
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The thing with the air shocks is that you are relying on the shock mount to take the weight of the car and the trailer instead of the leaf springs.I agree
with the airbags as they do work well ,and they are designed for raising the car for added support .the WD hitch and the correct leveling of the car and
trailer should give you a level towing setup .I setup a 64 travelall for towing
a 26ft streamline trailer .i refitted the hitch head correctly ,used 1000# bars
as this travelall had soft rear springs ,and a heavy tongue weight .once done
the customer reported very good towing and stability ,as opposed to the white knuckle ride she had before .things were not done correctly ,the rear
sagged down ,the hitch head was angled wrong ,so on and so forth .so it can
be accomplished to work well .did not need any air bags or shocks and sat
level .

Scott
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Old 09-12-2006, 10:05 PM   #269
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Progress made

Took the time today to start running what I did and more so "what I didn't do" over in my head and things that needed to be done. Even though I put all new leaf springs in the rear and added the "Road Master Active Supension" I decided to add(and I did today) a 1500 lbs "helper spring" on the bottom side of the leaf spring. Also found some Cooper Tires that are still 14 inch, but are rated at 1797 lbs, a temp rating of "B". The tires that are currently on the car are rated at 1500 lbs and a temp rating of "C". I can get the tires installed at $60.00 a piece. Also, got thinking about my hitch. I had some old 1000 lbs round bars but no head. Went to my old timer RV guy. He told me that when you have a hitch ball height of about 19", the angle of the head should be were it puts the end of the leveling bars about 7-8" off the ground when you pull up on the chain by hand. He said, "That's how you'll know your heads at the correct angle". If that is correct, one the the problems I had was not enough downward angle on the head. I have used that hitch on the 1968 Travelall(worked well) and on the Ford Excursion(worked well) pulling the same trailer. But I did not make any adjustments for the Galaxie.

So, I think with the added helper spring(put on car today) and new tires being installed Weds. afternoon and playing with the hitch angle(after it rains this week) I might be OK. I do plan on adding the front sway bar this winter(running out of Airstream money for the season)

The "Galaxie" is a great ride, but I can see back in the 60's somethings had to be done to pull a trailer. Or maybe thats the reason kids always got yelled at going down the road(Dad's were white knuckled the whole time).

Paul
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Old 09-13-2006, 01:25 AM   #270
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i installed front and rear sway bars on my 68 travelall and marveled at the
instant stability they provided .the dual shocks on the rear Gas shocks all
around ,even better stability .Each improvement made towing with it better
and more pleasant .Set up your galaxie to handle great and tow great . I say no to the airshocks ,thats it .with so many reliable airbag systems available
thats the way to go .I have airbags on the travelall also ,they give a nicer ride and they give some lift options if Im going off road as it is a 4 wheel drive
vehical .i don't rely on them for towing .mostly the air pressure is about 20 psi .I believe that when the WD is loaded correctly with the 1000# bars you
will find that it will tow well ,if its not it will not tow well .action is correct
about the front end going light ,thats why you have a weight distributing hitch.that puts weight back on the front wheels .heavier bars for vehicals
such as the galaxie and that 64 travelall with soft rear springs .lighter for
trucks with heavier duty suspensions .I use the 750# bars on my travelall .
I had 400# when i first had the trdwnd ,ok leveled good ,but the 750#
were the right ones ,no problems with rear sag with the bars loaded.

Scott
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Old 09-13-2006, 10:50 AM   #271
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However you do it, getting the rear up and level with the front should take a lot of the white out in your knuckles.

The meat of the shock mounting points will handle the added stress if you go to air shocks. And that is a cheap fix. The more expensive and more permenant way would be to go to the air bag assist or the helper springs. You will know when you have gone too far in the unloaded ride will be rough and bang around.

Again, all pre'65 full sized Ford/Mercurys have a lot of metal in them. May be too much as they all are fat and heavy. There was some lightening up that caused some frame rust out issues in 1965.

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Old 09-15-2006, 11:43 PM   #272
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1962 22' Flying Cloud
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We Tow our '62 Flying Cloud with our '68 Ford XL Convertable
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Old 09-16-2006, 11:45 PM   #273
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Quote:
Originally Posted by steve_judy
We have a kick towing with our '68 XL convertable
I'll bet when you pull into a gas station or campground it's like a magnet. We find that all the time. It's fun to see old cars pulling old trailers. They were made for each other. Your outfit looks great.
Barry
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Old 09-25-2006, 02:15 AM   #274
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Hola Class

I have a neighbor who is of the WWII age group who wants to sell his 1968 White four door Dodge Sedan. If you want that 1966 MotorCade Magazine Tow Vehicle write up appearance, then this is for you.

I have no idea of his asking price. If you contact me, I'll pass the information to both of you.

Rodger & Gabby
COS

( FltSgt@aol.com )
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Old 11-01-2006, 12:15 PM   #275
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Some 59 Buick photos

Here is our 59 Buick Electra in "As arrived in" condition. Apparently, it's been sitting in a barn for 40 plus years. Now - debating on putting in a Chevy 454 with 700R4 tranny rather than getting stuck on the side of the road with the Wildcat 445 (Nailhead 401) and Triple Turbine Dynaflow.

What would you do?
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Old 11-01-2006, 12:47 PM   #276
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Quote:
Originally Posted by robandzoe
Here is our 59 Buick Electra in "As arrived in" condition. Apparently, it's been sitting in a barn for 40 plus years. Now - debating on putting in a Chevy 454 with 700R4 tranny rather than getting stuck on the side of the road with the Wildcat 445 (Nailhead 401) and Triple Turbine Dynaflow.

What would you do?
Rob,

Looks great, does it have a tow hitch already? I am a fan of keeping original if possible, although there are advantages to the new computer controlled, fuel injected engines and new transmissions.

See you and the SOTR in Bozeman.

SYDTR

Bill
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Old 11-01-2006, 04:19 PM   #277
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Rob, it sure looks decent in the pictures. As for engine/trans swap the engine you have are known to be pretty good overall but the transmissions are not nearly as robust as later ones for towing.There are adapters available to put a 700R4 behind your Buick engine but upgrading to a later engine/trans combo assures you of availability of parts and less chance of on the road breakdowns. It's why I put a 1970 GTO/TransAm engine and trans in the '57. It has increased our comfort factor that we are not going to get stranded, parts are easily available at any automotive supply, and we get better gas mileage to boot. It also has sufficient power to tow our trailer anywhere without concern. Keeping a car stock is nice as long as it can provide the functionality and dependability you need. In this case I'd question the transmission in particular. You can always stick the original engine/trans under the bench or in a corner and if at some time in the future a decision is made to restore the car to original it's easy enough to put back in.

I notice you have the tissue dispenser. A lot of folks hide a stereo in those and leave the original radio on the dash so it looks stock but they have all the benefits of a new stereo system. It sure makes long drives more pleasureable.

I suspect you will have a ton of fun with this car and pulling the trailer. You are fortunate to have found such a solid car to start with.

Barry
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Old 11-02-2006, 12:51 AM   #278
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Hello Barry ,which GTO engine is it as there are a few options ,and which heads are they ? ram air III or IV ? 0r the 455 SD ? just curiouse as the base GTO 400 4 barrel isn't a trans am engine .Iv built a few of these engines the latest a 416 stroker with dual carbs for a 65 lemans ,kinda a 421 SD clone for fun ,and its fast.

Scott
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Old 11-02-2006, 02:14 AM   #279
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'71 Centurion '66 Tradewind

This is our '71 Buick Centurion convertible. The 455 factory performance engine with TH400 transmission pulls our '66 Tradewind up the hills in 3rd. The engine has 170,00 orginal miles on it. This is my second Centurion convertible. Between the 2 I've driven these big Buicks 19 years.

Neil.
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Old 11-04-2006, 10:40 PM   #280
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Quote:
Originally Posted by scottanlily
Hello Barry ,which GTO engine is it as there are a few options ,and which heads are they ? ram air III or IV ? 0r the 455 SD ? just curiouse as the base GTO 400 4 barrel isn't a trans am engine .Iv built a few of these engines the latest a 416 stroker with dual carbs for a 65 lemans ,kinda a 421 SD clone for fun ,and its fast.

Scott
Scott
Mine came out of a 70 GTO with 360hp. The Ram Air III 400 had 366hp and RA IV 400 was rated at 370 but I got a screaming deal on the 455. I replaced a '64 GTO tri-power engine I had acquired many moons ago as a fellow doing a restoration on the '64 it came out of tracked me down and hounded me for two years to sell him back the engine. He drove the 70 over and offered to swap me engines and pay to have the 455 rebuilt as part of the deal as I had just rebuilt the 389. I like the torque of the 455 but miss the mileage of the 389 which was consistently two to three miles per gallon better. The heads are off a '73 which was done to drop the compression and for the hardened seats and the original heads are on a shelf in the shop. I have a RA III that's under the bench needing a complete rebuild. It was in a car fire and water got in and the rings are seized to the cylinder walls but it was complete and a freebie so eventually I will redo it. I'm considering a 502/502 Chevy swap next winter but still mulling it over. At one point many years ago I had a 454 in the car and loved the torque and for the life of me cannot remember why I swapped it out for the 389. That happens to us oldsters I guess.
Barry
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