This 1965 Ford F250 Makes Me Want to Buy a Ranch

Tim Odell March 10, 2016 For Sale

1965 ford F350 4x4 for sale

Admittedly, we’re already ahead of the curve on trucks here at Redusernab. However, after stumbling upon this stunner of a ’65 F250 4×4, we can’t not share. 390ci V8, four-speed, 4×4, a flat bed and clean cosmetics. Honestly, there’s not much more to know or share. Without any other info, we can assume that single-circuit master cylinder’s actuating drums at all four corners and there’s no AC. The tires look to be in the 32-33″ range, which probably couples with crazy-low gearing to make it more usable around town. Lest you worry about a lack of torque, one, it’s got a 390 and two, it’s got a T18 four-speed with a 6.32:1 first gear.

I can almost rationalize dropping the Wagoneer for this beast. Alas, for me, this truck is a no-go as it lacks the necessary seating for my whole clan. Sadly, early Ford crew cabs are impossibly rare (I didn’t even know they officially made a until writing this post), so I’ll just have to settle for something with crumple zones, shoulder belts and even airbags.

At $5850, it’s really a steal if you’re looking for a stylish truck that can actually earn its keep.

Axle Pivoting Propane Fueled Nailhead Powered Dune Buggy Thing Breaks Barriers in WTFery

Tim Odell March 8, 2016 All Things Hoon

custom sand rail front suspensionChances are you saw pass arc past you in social media recently. Chances are you marveled at the idea of a small tube rail powered by 425ci of Buick power or maybe the precarious seating positions. Then, that front suspension. How does it work? How could it work? There are bars and linkages and pivots, but…huh?

Intrepid reader (and occasional LeMons Judge) headed out to take a look and sent back pictures and video of it in action. Quoth the Shawn:

That video shows the front end turning; I have seen it, watched the video several times, and even made drawings, but I still can’t make it make sense in my head. The steering shaft goes into a mystery box (the metal piece with brazing on top) and comes out the bottom to a pitman arm or drag link of some kind. Magic happens, and the entire front end turns. I’m still just baffled and I wish I had had the presence of mind to take better video.

The fabrication quality is top notch, obviously done by someone with experience and passion for their work. I didn’t get the builder’s name, but probably can if needed.
Here are the pix that I took:    The black/white ones are pix of pix; they’re dated January of 1969, so this thing has existed in this form for at least 47 years(!).


Here’s my best guess on what’s going on:
  • Suspension
    • Two sets of tubular arms go forward: one pair goes up, one goes down.
    • The whole front axle pivots off of the point where the two lower tubes join
    • There are steering arms off each knuckle, but they appear to be chained to the axle to prevent extra(?) steering
    • The front suspension is the spring between the headlight thing attached to the upper two tubes and the big cast iron axle thing.
    • There are extra end link things in there probably to keep something from moving more than it should
    • In the rear, we have a pivoting shackle arrangement to allow better articulation
  • Steering
    • The magic box is some kind of giant steering box that turns a giant pitman arm (maybe sur from a plane?)
    • The giant pitman arm grabs the rearmost part of the whole pivoting front member, causing it to sweep side-to-side.
    • That whole thing needs to move up-and-down to accommodate the difference in radii between the pitman arm and the giant pivoting front suspension.

Clear as mud, right?



Tim Odell March 3, 2016 For Sale

1967 funwagon for sale

This is a Sunbeam Funwagon. You’re . Per the seller and like one other online reference, Funwagons were based on the Sunbeam , a small British van from the Rootes Group. The Wikipedia article for the Commer FC confirms my assumption that all old British vans make like 50 horsepower and top out at about 65 mph. Obviously that platform needed extra weight, drag and a raised center of mass, so Sunbeam added a motorhome body and attempted to sell it exclusively to Americans. Those would be the same Americans just beginning to make use of the Dwight D. Eisenhower National System of Interstate and Defense Highways at sustained high-speed straight-line cruising. In a 1500cc-powered, narrow-track, high-roof camper thing. Right.

To its credit, the Funwagon has no fiberglass (that skin is sheet aluminum) and this one is completely mechanically functional. Supposing you were into silly, underpowered British vehicles (a few of our commenters come to mind), the $3k current bid isn’t too ridiculous in that it’s a typical price for an OK condition example of a rare vehicle. I was thinking motor swap, but it’s not like the original transmission or axle would be up to bear the necessary power boost. So, complete drivetrain swap? I’d offer up a Toyota 22RE + W56 + 7.5 or 8″ rear axle.

Your thoughts?

Epilogue: I meant to schedule this for last Thursday, but somehow screwed that up, so it never ran. Since then the auction ended with a winning bid of $6799!

Redusernab to Ruin Race Another ’62 Ranchero in LeMons

After our ’62 Ranchero became an object lesson for my dad’s physics class, a number of people approached us at the track offering to sell us Falcons or Rancheros. Most attractive among them was LeMons sometimes-staffer and generally awesome car guy ‘s Ranchero (note the LeMons sticker on his Quail-attending car). The car inspected, a deal was struck and a trailer was rented.

Click through for what we’re planning this time…

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928 or Pinto: Which is the Better Project Car for $2500?

Tim Odell February 23, 2016 For Sale

1979 porsche 928 for sale1976 ford pinto for sale

Which would you prefer? Ease with mediocrity or Sisyphysian toil with incredible potential? We’ve got two cars from opposite ends of the spectrum that have miraculously settled at the same price. In one corner, a V6-auto Pinto hatch. It appears to be in good shape, aside from having a pointless giant raised-cowl hood scoop installed. In the other, a treacherous 5MT 928. The seller tells us it runs great, but non-specifically hints it’s a project in need of work. In California the seller’s responsible for selling a car with a current smog certificate, so “buyer to smog” translates directly to “failed smog and the cost to fix is too high to bother with”.

I’d be curious to see if I could de-Porsche-fy the elecronics of a 928 in favor of a Megasquirt system using more standardized off-the-shelf parts. This wouldn’t make it any more likely to pass a smog check, but at least I’d be able to diagnose what part of the system’s failing.

Meanwhile, the Pinto? Well, they can be made to handle, or they can be made to handle some ridiculous motor in the engine bay. Clearly the only thing worth doing would be to combine said handling and power plant for the express purpose of embarrassing competitors at an event.

Is a Four Speed Enough to Make this Malaise Era Dodge Aspen Interesting?

Tim Odell February 23, 2016 For Sale

1978 dodge aspen 4 speed for sale

“1978 Dodge Aspen” tightens no trousers and moistens no panties. But then again, starting with a 318 and four-on-the-floor, then applying a four-barrel intake, a pair of glasspacks and a 3.73:1 LSD rearend might quicken a few pulses. Today’s example has none of those things add-ons, but does have a three-digit high bid as I’m typing this.

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Sears Pointless 2016: Redusernab, The Smashening

“So, uh, I guess we’re done”. The first time I said that, it was an unnerving realization. A week before the race, we had the car running just fine and all the major items checked off the to-do list. The carb and header were in, the new ignition system was working great, the front wheels pointed in all the right directions and the rear tires no longer rubbed. It was only about 8:30 and I was sending JeepJeff home with no need to come back mid-week. Weird, what are we forgetting? I wondered.

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Add some Aussie to your Ford for Under a Grand

Tim Odell February 18, 2016 For Sale

aussie ford 4l intechAustralia’s identity as a bizarro North America extends beyond its geography and fauna to include the automotive population. Sure, the Big Three did battle down under, but straight sixes were the weapons of choice in many cases. We’ve covered the Chrysler Hemi Six before, but today we’re taking a moment to appreciate a screaming deal on a 4.0L Ford Intech straight six. Normally, I’d use this sentence to hand over facts dredged from a wikipedia article, but as far as I can tell, the 1998-2002 Ford Intech SOHC six has no dedicated wikipedia article! Instead, all the generations of various Aussie sixes are buried in dedicated to all Ford straight sixes. The info there matches the seller and  the SOHC, non-HP 4.0L Intech made 210hp and 263ft-lbs of torque.

At $750 for the engine and attached four-speed automatic, that’s on part with any other random craigslist find with similar power (and number of gears). Which is good, because aside from the seller’s blanked eBay listing template, there’s no information about mileage or condition of either unit. It’s tough to make any assumptions about the service history of a motor that’s been out of production for 14 years, but the seller’s an established eBayer, so you could just pick up the phone and call them up if you’re serious.

Now, if only someone had a car-based-truck, aka Ute to put it into…

Diesel Dodge Ram VW Camper Mash-Up: Way More Awesome, Less Terrible Than You’d Expect

Tim Odell February 11, 2016 For Sale

1991 dodge ram vw camper for sale

Never has a vehicle so deftly straddled the line between awesome expedition rig and sketchy homeless guy shelter on wheels. The base of this vehicle is a 1991 Dodge Ram D250 Powered by a turbo Cummins 12V Six. Atop the bed and back of the cab has been grafted the carapace of a VW camper van. Based on my wild-ass guess, it appears to be a second-generation T2 (’67-79).

At least from the outside, the graft-a-van-onto-a-truck fabrication is better than one might expect. It gives off a pretty passable giant vibe with minimally obvious seams or roof sealant overuse. The chassis is bomb-proof and now it has a lot more interior volume. Oh, but that interior…hoo-boy. Nothing screams “don’t touch” like a stained patio furniture mattress inside your custom van-like rig.

So…I actually really like this thing. You could dump most of the interior contents straight into the dumpster behind the IHOP he’s proposing to meet you at. In step two you can decide what interior finishing or racks or tie-downs (for cargo) you’d like to add. The camper tent thing is shot, but that’s a problem solved for . A rear seat might be nice if you’re planning on traveling with more than one other person, as would reinstating the sliding door on the passenger side. Though, at some point you might as well just buy a Suburban or 4×4 converted van if that’s what you’re after.

The price is definitely bonkers at $5,500, but hopefully he can be brought down from there after it sits for a few months.


US EPA Wants to End Emissions Exemption for Street Cars Turned Racecar

Tim Odell February 9, 2016 All Things Hoon

mustang gt350r

In a , the US EPA has stated that it intends to eliminate emissions exemptions for street cars turned into competition vehicles. We really really really really really hate writing about politics here, but we’re making an exception this once for two reasons: this is really really right up our collective alley and there’s already endless misinformation spreading. Without delay, let’s get to some facts.

Currently, you’re not allowed to modify the emissions equipment on a new vehicle certified to meet emissions standards, except if it’s used “for competition use only”. For example, you could buy a new GT350R Mustang and do whatever you want with it, ECU and exhaust-wise, so long as you never put it back on the street.

EPA is proposing to “fix” that regulation (emphasis ours):

In particular, we generally consider nonroad engines and vehicles to be ‘‘used solely for competition’’ based on usage characteristics. This allows EPA to set up an administrative process to approve competition exemptions, and to create an exemption from the tampering prohibition for products that are modified for competition purposes. There is no comparable allowance for motor vehicles. A motor vehicle qualifies for a competition exclusion based on the physical characteristics of the vehicle, not on its use. Also, if a motor vehicle is covered by a certificate of conformity at any point, there is no exemption from the tampering and defeat-device prohibitions that would allow for converting the engine or vehicle for competition use. There is no prohibition against actual use of certified motor vehicles or motor vehicle engines for competition purposes; however, it is not permissible to remove a motor vehicle or motor vehicle engine from its certified configuration regardless of the purpose for doing so.

This reads to say that from the date the regulation goes into effect a vehicle built to an EPA certification (i.e. all new cars) should never be modified from that certified configuration, even if it never drives another mile on a public road.

A few thoughts and bullet points after the jump… … Continue Reading

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