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Old 11-27-2019, 06:24 PM   #1
AllenV
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Default '55 F100 new project, new member

I thought I'd stop lurking and introduce myself and my adopted F100. She is a 1955 F100 I recently acquired from gentleman in northern New Mexico. As a result of an uncertain past I have been researching what I have and benefiting greatly by the collected expertise in this forum. My aim is to restore her to a driver in a condition more-or-less true to what Ford built. What I know right now is that the motor was swapped out in favor of a later 292. the block casting is EDB 6015E. Carburation is Ford 2100, C3TF-H. The power plant looks to be attached to a T98 transmission. I am in-process with installing new distributor from FBO Systems. This has Pertronix innards and vacuum advance. (Kudos to the threads on "ported vacuum".) Then it's on to replacing the front springs as both are broken. And new wheels and tires all round. At that point She ought to move under her own power and I'll take some time to get to know her.

I am sure to be bugging the forum for advice. Any thoughts/suggestion are welcome.
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'55 F100 with slightly newer 292 Y-block
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Old 11-27-2019, 06:38 PM   #2
dmsfrr
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Default Re: '55 F100 new project, new member

What are you considering for the front springs?
These folks are just down the road a ways and can likely rebuild/replace leaves in the ones you have.

https://mcbridesinc.com/
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Old 11-27-2019, 06:51 PM   #3
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Default Re: '55 F100 new project, new member

I have new units from Eaton Detroit Spring sitting on my bench.
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Old 11-27-2019, 09:41 PM   #4
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Default Re: '55 F100 new project, new member

Quote:
Originally Posted by AllenV View Post
I have new units from Eaton Detroit Spring sitting on my bench.
Welcome!

I did the same with the rear leaf springs under the red car in my avatar, there were too many mis-matched leaves.

"EDB 6015E" Pretty sure that's a '58 block number, if it matters.
http://ford-y-block.com/Block%20identification.htm

Between '55 and '58 Ford made 2 sets of changes to the way the dash gauges work. If the truck has a stock Temp gauge it probably won't work right with an original '58 sender in the head.

In case you haven't lined up distributor gears before and it gives you a problem, just holler.
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File Type: jpg 55-56 & 57 style temp sensors.jpg (35.8 KB, 8 views)
File Type: jpg firing order, right side.jpg (44.2 KB, 7 views)

Last edited by dmsfrr; 11-27-2019 at 10:11 PM.
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Old 11-28-2019, 08:47 AM   #5
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Default Re: '55 F100 new project, new member

Welcome to the forum. You'll find lots of knowledgeable folks here, ready and willing to help. You've got a great looking truck in those two pictures. More pictures are always welcome.
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Old 11-28-2019, 09:33 AM   #6
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Default Re: '55 F100 new project, new member

Hello and welcome to the Ford folks...we're a friendly bunch Nice truck!
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Old 11-28-2019, 11:53 AM   #7
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Default Re: '55 F100 new project, new member

Thank you for the welcome. Regarding temperature gauges and such, the truck was converted to 12V in a haphazard and incomplete fashion. Basically the stock gauges were disconnected in favor of a little aftermarket set mounted below the dash. One of the sub-projects is to rewire the truck and do it right. Thank you for the heads up on sensors.
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Old 11-28-2019, 10:31 PM   #8
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Default Re: '55 F100 new project, new member

I never saw the point in swapping to an FBO dizzy. If you have a '57 or later Y-block, you already have the upgraded vacuum/mechanical advance distributor. Just take out the points and condenser and replace with a Petronix unit and you basically have what they are selling. They claim to have an improved distributor shaft bushing location as opposed to the original, but you should be able to get lifetime service out of the OEM distrib bushing with periodic lubrication.
I personally will never purchase another Petronix unit ever again. I had a petronix in a '57, 292 Y-block that only lasted a few months, and I had a Petronix unit in my '55, 272 Y-block that only lasted about a month. Went back to points and condenser. The Petronix units are made in China. It's likely they can't withstand the heat. But all your repro condensers are made in china also, and you are darned lucky to get one of them to last very long either.
If you look at the FBO main webpage, the guy who wrote the sales pitch for their unit really overdid it to the point that turned me off.
My car is running just fine with it's original load-o-matic dizzy and I don't need his FBO!
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Old 11-28-2019, 10:37 PM   #9
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Default Re: '55 F100 new project, new member

PICs of engine please !
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Old 11-29-2019, 10:05 AM   #10
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Default Re: '55 F100 new project, new member

I'll try to get some images of the motor today. It is however, still a mucky mess and does not photograph well.

The new distributor was motivated by the condition of the old one. Excessive endplay (measured as out of spec per the '55 Ford manual) and slop in the shaft bushings combined with well worn cam lobes, a non-functioning vacuum diaphragm, and interior parts resembling a coral reef, prompted me to find a replacement. A phone conversation with the fellow that builds up the distributors at FBO convinced me (for better or worse!) that this is a good way to go.

Interesting point regarding Daves55Sedan's observation that my truck already has vac/mech advance. Yes, this is true and I had sorted that fact before replacing it. HOWEVER, the previous owner had attached the vacuum line to the ported vacuum tap on the carburetor. This seems incorrect to me. I plan to attach the vacuum line to an existing side port on the 90-degree elbow fitting which connects the PCV line to the manifold in front of the carb. But I realize that I am trudging at the bottom of a steep learning curve with this vehicle. Any experienced insight is welcome.
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Old 11-29-2019, 10:29 AM   #11
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Post Re: '55 F100 new project, new member

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Old 11-29-2019, 12:23 PM   #12
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Default Re: '55 F100 new project, new member

Allright folks, more data:
FIRST, let's continue with the distributor. In image(1) you see the numbering on the shell. I make that as C0AF 12127 A. Inside, the weights and springs are fully concealed under a fixed deck plate. I think that places the dist. at about 1960 vintage?? In image (2) I have circled the location (left) of the vacuum port to which the old distributor was attached as well as the new location (right) to which I plan to attach the new distributor vacuum advance. Am I correctly understanding that the old location was ported vacuum? Does anyone foresee any problems with my intended new location?

NEXT: the request for images of the motor. Uploaded without itemized discussion. The block is the EDB 6015E noted in the first post. It has been suggested that this dates to 1958. Based on the carb# mentioned in that first post, I think it hails to about 1964. The distributor is out at the moment. The white pipe at the rear is a 1.5 inch plastic pipe serving to keep debris from falling into the open distributor hole. The rocker covers have the add-on oiling modification. The rubber hoses are cracked and removed for replacement. Generally, triage is on-going. I believe the motor is solid. But I have not yet done a compression or leak-down test.

LAST: Finding love is not one of my strong suits.
Attached Images
File Type: jpg IMG_distShell.jpg (54.5 KB, 25 views)
File Type: jpg IMG_0627annotated.jpg (108.6 KB, 27 views)
File Type: jpg IMG_0623.jpg (149.7 KB, 26 views)
File Type: jpg IMG_0624.jpg (141.3 KB, 22 views)
File Type: jpg IMG_0625.jpg (49.6 KB, 22 views)
File Type: jpg IMG_0626.jpg (112.8 KB, 22 views)
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Old 11-29-2019, 12:49 PM   #13
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Default Re: '55 F100 new project, new member

Quote:
Originally Posted by AllenV View Post
... In image (2) I have circled the location (left) of the vacuum port to which the old distributor was attached as well as the new location (right) to which I plan to attach the new distributor vacuum advance. Am I correctly understanding that the old location was ported vacuum? Does anyone foresee any problems with my intended new location? ...
The vacuum line for the original distributor is intended to be connected to the ported vacuum fitting on the carburetor. The distributor will not operate as designed if connected to full manifold vacuum.
.
Quote:
Originally Posted by AllenV View Post
... The block is the EDB 6015E noted in the first post. It has been suggested that this dates to 1958. Based on the carb# mentioned in that first post, I think it hails to about 1964. ...
EDB-E engine block is '58 / early '59. Click on the link in comment #4.
If the block were newer it would have a B9AE ('59/'60), C1AE ('61) or C2AE ('62+) prefix.
The "C3TF" carburetor number would be a '63+ Truck designation.
The "C0AF" distributor prefix is for a standard non-model specific '60+ distributor.

Various parts on the engine are mixed from a few different years. This is not unusual given her uncertain past and the number of decades & previous owners since she was new.

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File Type: jpg dist vac line c.jpg (84.9 KB, 12 views)

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Old 11-29-2019, 01:25 PM   #14
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Default Re: '55 F100 new project, new member

This is where the FBO distributor deviates from the original. It wants full manifold vacuum to drive the advance at idle. Since I have not yet done the hook-up, I am verifying this point with FBO. If I learn something different I will post a note.
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Old 11-29-2019, 01:33 PM   #15
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Default Re: '55 F100 new project, new member

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This is where the FBO distributor deviates from the original. It wants full manifold vacuum to drive the advance at idle. Since I have not yet done the hook-up, I am verifying this point with FBO. If I learn something different I will post a note.
Yes, if the instruction sheet for the replacement distributor states "manifold vacuum", as opposed to 'ported' vacuum, follow those instructions.
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Old 11-29-2019, 02:34 PM   #16
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Default Re: '55 F100 new project, new member

FBO quickly answered my e-mail and confirmed the direct manifold vacuum hookup.

On to the 2nd part of your note. This truck seems very much to be a melange of components. This suggests to me it lived the life of a rural truck, consistent with its previous owner living in Springer, NM. As parts wore out they were replaced, perhaps from the local "used parts store". This contributes to the interesting historical puzzle.
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Old 11-29-2019, 02:59 PM   #17
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Default Re: '55 F100 new project, new member

You've actually got a fairly normal combination of recycled parts.
Much better than I had when I bought my '55. I foolishly broke several 'buying an old car' rules and was so disgusted with what it had under the hood I didn't work on it for four years.
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Old 11-29-2019, 03:47 PM   #18
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Default Re: '55 F100 new project, new member

There is absolutely nothing unusual about finding a '55 Ford pickup with a later Y-block engine in it.
These came from the factory with the 239 Y-block truck engine which fell out of service from the crate engine rebuilders decades ago.
In 1981, a mechanic at a Ford dealer in Texas told me that all old 239 and 272 Y-block cores were being scrapped by the crate motor rebuilders and replaced with 292 truck engines with steel crank.
Anyway, I wanted to see engine pics because of the carb. You have a '57 or later intake manifold and carb, but it doesn't make a difference since the FBO allegedly connects to manifold vacuum.
I guess that means you could use the FBO dizzy with the older style manifold ('56 and older) and bug-sprayer type carb (Holley 2110, Holley 2100 and Ford EBU).
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Old 11-29-2019, 05:29 PM   #19
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There is nothing wrong with Petronix as long as you use the correct coil with it.Ive had one for 15 years with no problems
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Old 11-29-2019, 06:22 PM   #20
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Default Re: '55 F100 new project, new member

I've heard several Baby Bird owners who've used them say the Pertronix units used to be made in the US and more recently they're made off-shore (China) and are now more prone to failure.
I gave up on after-market ignition conversion kits years ago when one quit on me in a turn in front of a loaded dump truck.
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