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Old 03-20-2020, 10:03 PM   #1
Jpops55
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Default 55 Fairlane New member/barn find

Hi everyone Iím a new member and donít know if this is the right place to post but I have to start somewhere I guess. Last fall I bought a 55 Ford Fairlane from my next door neighbor. Heís had it in his pole barn for the last 27 years with the intention of restoring it and never got to it. I offered to buy it, we came to an agreement and now it is in my pole barn, hopefully it will be restored in a couple of years instead of decades. Iím not quite sure where to start, original or hot rod but would appreciate any input/advice you may have to get started.
Thanks, Joe
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Old 03-20-2020, 10:11 PM   #2
39deluxecp
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Default Re: 55 Fairlane New member/barn find

Put a 390 4 speed in it
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Old 03-20-2020, 10:45 PM   #3
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Default Re: 55 Fairlane New member/barn find

Depends on what YOU want. My banging gears and burning rubber days are past me. That said since the car has an automatic I'd go with a small block Ford and AOD trans. But that is just me. You could also ask also questions over on the HAMB. Just remember traditional is the key on the HAMB. No Mustang II front suspensions, fuel injection, or low profile wheels/tires. You can ask questions there even if you have non traditional parts, just don't talk about them or post pictures showing them. Nice find and good luck.
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Old 03-20-2020, 10:50 PM   #4
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Default Re: 55 Fairlane New member/barn find

Thanks, if itís ok, Iíll probably have more questions down the line. Thanks for your guyís time.


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Old 03-21-2020, 08:31 AM   #5
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Default Re: 55 Fairlane New member/barn find

go with the engine thats in it.you have a lot of work ahead.
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Old 03-21-2020, 09:38 AM   #6
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Default Re: 55 Fairlane New member/barn find

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go with the engine thats in it.you have a lot of work ahead.
This is what I would do, also. Get it up and running/driving, then start fixing other things.
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Old 03-21-2020, 01:01 PM   #7
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Default Re: 55 Fairlane New member/barn find

The old Y blocks are different enough that a lot of folks try to go a different way but they worked OK back in the day. The 239 was a bit small but the 272 in 1955 was getting there. The Ford-O-Matic transmissions can be a challenge but they will work well if in good condition. AOD kits for the Y-block are available but are pricy to those on a budget.

The car doesn't look to be in to bad a shape and looks relatively straight. If the rust is minimal, you are a lucky person. I wonder if it was always red. The interior looks original except for the cover on the seat.
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Old 03-21-2020, 07:49 PM   #8
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Default Re: 55 Fairlane New member/barn find

if the current engine runs and the trans works go with what you have. Otherwise, a small block Ford (302,351 W) is a good choice and it uses stock mounts to install the engine. If an overdrive is not wanted, then a C-4 is a good choice -if a standard trans is what you want then a four speed or a 5 speed (O/D) are your choices.


First decide on what you want, then do it the way you want.


The first items that you should consider working on are the brakes and fuel system. Safety systems should be the first consideration.
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Old 03-21-2020, 09:29 PM   #9
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Default Re: 55 Fairlane New member/barn find

Not sure if you have a Fairlane with one Customline fender, or a Customline with Fairlane series body side trim. Appears to have Fairlane interior door panels, but the headlight shroud is Customline/Mainline version.
Appears to have V8, 272, standard steering, standard brakes and Ford-O-Matic transmission. If the engine is not locked up, it may be rebuildable.
Most people would tell you to scrap the original intake manifold and holley 94 carb. Replace them with 1957 or later Y-block intake setup, but you would need carb linkage and '57 or later distributor to go with that to make it work right. I am still using all original and it will outlive me as long as I can keep replacing crappy ignition condensers from China. Ford-O-Matic is a durable transmission. At minimum, you can probably drop the pan, clean out filter screen and replace fluid (use Mercon/Dexron fluid).
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Old 03-22-2020, 09:17 AM   #10
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Default Re: 55 Fairlane New member/barn find

According to the vin# itís a Fairlane, and it used to be two tone red/white. (The current red paint job seems to have brush marks in it)As to the Fairlane/Custom line fenders, Iím not up to speed with all the details that it should or shouldnít have. I take it you should have only one or the other. Feel free to impart any knowledge you care to share. The car is very straight and the rust seems to be minimal, even the trunk and tub for the spare tire are solid. I think itís a keeper.


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Old 03-22-2020, 09:35 AM   #11
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Default Re: 55 Fairlane New member/barn find

We need more pix of your car. It looks like you got a good one.
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Old 03-22-2020, 10:37 AM   #12
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Default Re: 55 Fairlane New member/barn find




Vin# indicates Fairlane Club sedan


Factory tag on seat frame

Vin# says torch red w/snowshoe white


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Old 03-22-2020, 10:48 AM   #13
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Default Re: 55 Fairlane New member/barn find


Air cleaner/mouse villa
Saved the best for last, you can never ďunsmellĒ that smell!


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Old 03-22-2020, 06:03 PM   #14
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Default Re: 55 Fairlane New member/barn find

It looks like the mice had some fun, but a nice car. I assume the first digit of the VIN is an "M" since it appears to have a 272 4 barrel engine. Unless it's the very very rare "P" code 292 police interceptor engine. I've only seen one of those in my life in a passenger car, and it was online, not in person.


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Old 03-22-2020, 07:21 PM   #15
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Default Re: 55 Fairlane New member/barn find

The serial # starts with a ďUĒ. Not sure what that indicates.


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Old 03-22-2020, 08:49 PM   #16
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Default Re: 55 Fairlane New member/barn find

I think originally it had a 2 barrel carb according to online spec sheet. ??


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Old 03-22-2020, 09:15 PM   #17
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Default Re: 55 Fairlane New member/barn find

welcome!

Looks this blog will help you

https://www.hotrodreverend.com/blog

While going back through my 1955 Ford Fairlane Club Sedan that I have owned since I was 17 (now I am 47), I tried to document a lot of work with photos and videos and explanations and part numbers, and on and on. Check the view count on this forum section. I used to post everything here but it got too big.

There are many wonderful, helpful people here on this forum. They were sure a help to me as I got everything back together! There are one or two bad eggs but they only show up every now and then.

Enjoy!
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Old 03-22-2020, 10:03 PM   #18
Jpops55
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Default Re: 55 Fairlane New member/barn find

Thanks, Iím sure Iíll reach out from time to time if thatís ok. Your blog looks to be very informative. The Y block pamphlet is a big plus.
Thanks again, Joe


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Old 03-22-2020, 10:46 PM   #19
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Default Re: 55 Fairlane New member/barn find

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jpops55 View Post
I think originally it had a 2 barrel carb according to online spec sheet. ??


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Yes, "U" indicates it was built with a 272 2 barrel Y-Block V8.
Somebody swapped on a 4 barrel some where along the line.


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Old 03-23-2020, 07:57 AM   #20
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Default Re: 55 Fairlane New member/barn find

Check to see if the front cross member is rusted out. It's a very common problem with these cars. If it is bad you might as well tackle that first.
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