Dyno Bob's Garage

Hello all, I bought this 1961 Ford Falcon about 3 years ago. It was park just off the side of the road, on my way to work and I stopped to take a look (first picture). It had 4 different kinds of tires on it and the exhaust manifold was cracked. The radiator was leaking, the Oil pan was leaking and the Transmission was slipping and leaking transmission fluid. The oil pressure was low and the oil light came on every time I slowed down to stop. The Headliner and Upholstery were shot. On the plus side the floor was solid and the body had very little rust. The first things I worked on were the brakes, new shoes, lines and master cylinder. I then had the Radiator boiled out and repaired. I then pulled the head did a valve job and new oil seals, made some improvements to the oiling system for the valve train and put a new oil pump in. I removed the exhaust manifold at this time and spent time welding it back up and had it machined. I finally felt I had done enough to put it back on the street, to drive back and forth to work once in a while. The only problem was now that I had the exhaust fixed and could actually hear the engine running; once it warmed up I could hear a rod knocking. I parked the car outside along the garage, because I had a few more things I needed to work on before I could get back to it. I always look on eBay and Craigs list for any auto parts that might look worth buying. A fellow listed a 1961 170 Ford engine and 3 speed manual transmission for $50.00 bucks, I called and he said it was out of a 1961 Ford Falcon, he said it ran fine when they took it out, it had been setting for about 18 months, but didn’t think it had got any water in it and he was going to put a small block Ford engine in his car. He had the motor and transmission over in St. Louis, but it turned out he lived about 2 miles from my house in Illinois. He said he had seen my old Falcon in my driveway and new were I lived, he offered to load it at work and drop it off at my house. After all I had went thru on the first engine only to find that rod knocking, I decided to build a stand and fire this engine up before I installed it in the car. So what you see in the video I call “Dyno Bob’s Engine Stand” was what I came up with. The Motor wouldn’t turn over so I squinted oil down each of the cylinders, after I broke all of the sparkplugs loose with a long breaker bar, they were rusted in. I took the valve cover off and sprayed oil on all the rockers, push rods and lifters, I turned the motor over, back and forth for a couple of days off and on with a long breaker bar on a ½” drive ratchet, until I was able to make full resolutions. I drained the oil and changed the filter, put new plugs in and tried to start it again. This time it turned over but fuel was pouring out of the carburetor. I took the carburetor apart sprayed it out with cleaner, the bowl gasket fell apart and I had to make one out of a piece of gasket material I had. The next time I pushed the starter button and cranked the engine over, then hit the ignition switch and it fired right up. The damn thing sat there and idled like it just came off the assembly line. I let is run for a while and shut it down, I hooked up an old oil pressure gauge I had and went in the house and got the camera, the thing sprang to life as soon as I hit the starter button and flipped the switch, it was showing 40 psi oil pressure when idling. After I bought a few gaskets and plug wires, points and condenser, I pulled the old Motor and Transmission and swapped the Transmission over and reinstalled it, it runs like a top and that’s my story. (second picture at Gateway International Raceway, my son was racing his Mustang that day).
cole 12/19/2009
Actually, the photo didn't come through. Please upload it as a separate "Your Story" by clicking here. I’ll add it to your story.

Cole Quinnell
Editorial Director
Robert Thiel 12/19/2009
I had sent a picture of the 61 Falcon as it looks today, but I guess they just used the video, if anyone knows how to add a picture please tell me and I will post one.
Ray Ford 12/09/2009
Thats a great story I would like to see your car after you have got it back together.I have always liked Falcons from the begining Cool cars. Long live the Falcon's 50 Year's old and still going strong