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#3881730 - 02/18/18 07:03 AM 68 Ford Build with Crown Vic Frame Swap / Install
DesertRatRacer Offline
Rookie

Registered: 11/30/17
Posts: 84
Loc: Southern California
The Title is a little generic, but it gets the point across.

Basically I'm taking a 1968 Mercury Montego MX Station Wagon Unibody that has been damaged / unsafe to really drive, and then Installing a 2001 Mercury Grand Marquis Ls Frame and powertrain in it. I wanted to do a forum post showing the whole process I'm going through to possible help others, and get some help myself.

I'll post some pictures below of the cars before being taken apart, and some more backstory to everything. I'm also doing youtube videos showing a lot of the process and interesting things I'm finding out along the way. The first Video below is basically an introduction to the cars, and getting them ready to be taken apart.





A long time ago I wanted to put a frame under this 1968 Mercury Montego Station Wagon. At the time my dad ended up getting the wagon back from me. Many years has passed, and the car broke another axle of many and hit the ground hard. After this last hit it left the car pretty out of wack, not counting many of the other subframe problems. It needed a new sub frame or some serious straightening work. He decided he didn't want to mess with the job and gave me back the car. Now after the current damage I was 100% ready to try the frame install. With a lot of thought and measuring I decided that the modern Crown Victoria Chassis would be a great fit. Its very close in track width, and the wheelbase is only off around 3/4 in. give or take. The Mercury Montego is very similar to other cars like the Ford Torino, Ford Falcon, Ford Fairlane, Mercury Comet, Mercury Cyclone and other Ford unibody cars around 1968.

This is going to be a full build series showing how I plan to get through mounting the frame to the unibody chassis. I will be using a 2001 Mercury Marquis LS as it is basically exactly the same as a Crown Victoria. The Grand Marquis was bought for $500 and had an additional $100 put into it to get everything going good. It basically needed a lot of body work that was not cost effective to fix. With that and other factors it made it the perfect donor vehicle to fix the wagon at a decent price. This marquis had rear air bags, 3.55 gear ratio, and dual exhaust giving it a lot of great additional options to start with, not counting the 4.6 ford that has a huge aftermarket parts list, 4 wheel disc brakes with abs and traction control. The station wagon was bought by my dad in the early 90's for $100 and has been in my family driving for over 25 years. I remember being taken to 2nd grade in the 90's with the wagon and all my school years after. I learned a lot about working on cars from all the work I helped my dad with on it growing up. It really means a lot to me to be able to bring it back to life, and keep it going for many years to come.

This first video will be the introduction to show you both vehicles and getting them ready to be taken apart for the chassis swap. Many videos are to come with the crown vic frame swap, and all the performance upgrades later... If You have any questions or need help with anything then just ask. I will help with anything I can.

_________________________
1997 Ford Crown Vic P71
1997 Lincoln Mark VIII
1999 Ford F-150 5.4
1970 Ford Galaxie 500
2001 Mercury Marquis LS / 1968 Mercury Montego MX Station Wagon





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#3883210 - 02/19/18 04:19 PM Re: 68 Ford Build with Crown Vic Frame Swap / Install [Re: DesertRatRacer]
a_d_a_m Offline

3 Orange Whips
Metroplectic

Registered: 10/25/05
Posts: 27407
Loc: Cleveland, OH
Please tell me the Montego is going to get Cyclone stripes.
_________________________
Apply Rule Three Today!

'91 LTD Country Squire (POTM Mar. '19) | '03 Marauder (POTM Nov. '10, Jul. '20) | 2010 P7B (POTM Feb. '21)
formerly: '02 MGM, '04 MGM, '04 MGM v2.0, '04 MM, '07 P71 (POTM Feb. '18), '04 CVLX (POTM Jun. '19 and the best car ever), '03 SAP P71

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#3883322 - 02/19/18 06:38 PM Re: 68 Ford Build with Crown Vic Frame Swap / Install [Re: DesertRatRacer]
BigNSlow Offline
Aussie powered
Metroplectic

Registered: 01/31/03
Posts: 41277
Loc:
Why not 2003+ frame to get the benefits of rack and pinion and better handling?
_________________________
Originally Posted By Ezbok58a
He runs a fake equipment install company just so he could run his vehicles with lights on them, and his hobbies include running motorcycles off the road, terrorizing civilians in Walmart parking lots, handing out pamphlets on Open Carry, backing into parked cars and then blaming it on the parked car, securing perimeters, getting into conflicts that no rational person gets into, and helping stranded motorists...

I'm sure I'm missing some but that's techno as we know him...

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#3883370 - 02/19/18 08:37 PM Re: 68 Ford Build with Crown Vic Frame Swap / Install [Re: DesertRatRacer]
a_d_a_m Offline

3 Orange Whips
Metroplectic

Registered: 10/25/05
Posts: 27407
Loc: Cleveland, OH
I'm guessing because the car was cheap and available.
_________________________
Apply Rule Three Today!

'91 LTD Country Squire (POTM Mar. '19) | '03 Marauder (POTM Nov. '10, Jul. '20) | 2010 P7B (POTM Feb. '21)
formerly: '02 MGM, '04 MGM, '04 MGM v2.0, '04 MM, '07 P71 (POTM Feb. '18), '04 CVLX (POTM Jun. '19 and the best car ever), '03 SAP P71

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#3884266 - 02/20/18 10:04 PM Re: 68 Ford Build with Crown Vic Frame Swap / Install [Re: DesertRatRacer]
Cheapthrillp71 Offline
Member

Registered: 11/20/16
Posts: 149
Loc: Michigan
I started a similar project years ago with an 07 p71 and a 66 Galaxie. Got the p71 frame done to match the Galaxie, but the Galaxie itself just ended up being to rotten to follow through with.

Good luck on your swap. Looking forward to updates.
_________________________
#LSSWAPPEDMARAUDER
2003 MM turbo 5.3 [email protected]
#cheapthrillb2
2004 LJ Lq9 one tons
2014 jku Rubicon
2012 powerstroke king ranch crew cab

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#3885466 - 02/22/18 10:29 AM Re: 68 Ford Build with Crown Vic Frame Swap / Install [Re: DesertRatRacer]
rswinks Offline
Member

Registered: 03/16/16
Posts: 116
Loc: Grand Haven, Michigan
Looks like one heck of a project. Certainly going to be following this thread.
_________________________
2006 Crown Vic P71, 3.55L, 134K Miles

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#3885698 - 02/22/18 01:00 PM Re: 68 Ford Build with Crown Vic Frame Swap / Install [Re: DesertRatRacer]
SteveH Offline
Rookie

Registered: 02/21/15
Posts: 71
Loc: Calgary
Doing something similar. 2000 CV frame for a 85 Country Squire. Using a 4.6 32V motor though. I guess I should start posting pics too.

I didn't choose the 2003+ as I wanted to keep the turbines. Unfortunately without the bigger brakes too.

Good luck and keep us posted.

Steve
_________________________
1985 Country Squire (aka Woody)
1981 Lincoln Mark V1


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#3886042 - 02/22/18 04:48 PM Re: 68 Ford Build with Crown Vic Frame Swap / Install [Re: SteveH]
BigMerc96 Offline

I know nothing
Posting Addict

Registered: 06/05/10
Posts: 19868
Loc: I can see Detroit from here!
Originally Posted By SteveH
Doing something similar. 2000 CV frame for a 85 Country Squire. Using a 4.6 32V motor though. I guess I should start posting pics too.

I didn't choose the 2003+ as I wanted to keep the turbines. Unfortunately without the bigger brakes too.

Good luck and keep us posted.

Steve
Please tell me you are at least going to use '95-'97 brakes and not box brakes. '95-'97 front brakes will clear the 15" wheels, and they're a direct swap for the '98-'02 stuff, only need to change out the calipers/pads/rotors and the brake hoses. Technically you also need to change the hubs, but as I discovered when I put '98-'02 hubs on my '97, you can simply shim out the caliper bracket by about 1/16" from the spindle and smaller brakes will center up fine with the larger newer style hubs. I have large fender washers between the bracket and spindle, been that way for years, but definitely would be a "WTF?" moment if anyone but me ever does the brakes on that car.
_________________________
-Steve

2006 Audi A6 ~132k miles, stock.
1998 Mercury Grand Marquis LS HPP ~100k miles, slowly acquiring modifications.
1997 Town Car Cartier ~145k miles, Ported Plenum, Gutted Airbox, Contour E-fan Retrofit, Dual exhaust with Magnaflows, cats deleted, MSD Ignition, KYB Gas-A-Justs, P71 front bar, air ride reinstated, Projector retrofit, Caddy 4-note horn retrofit, Wood rim steering wheel retrofit, holistic weight reduction as the parts fall off..
1996 Mercury Grand Marquis GS 117,485mi. R.I.P. 7/14/12 frown

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#3886082 - 02/22/18 05:41 PM Re: 68 Ford Build with Crown Vic Frame Swap / Install [Re: DesertRatRacer]
SteveH Offline
Rookie

Registered: 02/21/15
Posts: 71
Loc: Calgary

The answer is... YES! And that was a good comment.

I have all new stuff 95-97 brakes and have a set of 98+ brakes as well if I ever want to go with 16 and loose the turbines and 15s.

You made a good point about the hub and offset of the rotor with the interference of the caliper and provide a great solution. I saw that too when playing around with my parts. The 98+ hubs are thicker and hold the 95 to 97 rotor further out. I think the +98 hubs would be better but I have the 95 to 97 one in there now and they are new. If there ever fails i will use the +98 as replacements and shims for the caliper. Im using new hoses too.

Steve
_________________________
1985 Country Squire (aka Woody)
1981 Lincoln Mark V1


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#3886130 - 02/22/18 07:02 PM Re: 68 Ford Build with Crown Vic Frame Swap / Install [Re: DesertRatRacer]
BigNSlow Offline
Aussie powered
Metroplectic

Registered: 01/31/03
Posts: 41277
Loc:
So why the 2000 frame? Was the frame on the wagon rotted? It's a lot of work to only gain watts link.
_________________________
Originally Posted By Ezbok58a
He runs a fake equipment install company just so he could run his vehicles with lights on them, and his hobbies include running motorcycles off the road, terrorizing civilians in Walmart parking lots, handing out pamphlets on Open Carry, backing into parked cars and then blaming it on the parked car, securing perimeters, getting into conflicts that no rational person gets into, and helping stranded motorists...

I'm sure I'm missing some but that's techno as we know him...

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#3886410 - 02/23/18 03:09 AM Re: 68 Ford Build with Crown Vic Frame Swap / Install [Re: Cheapthrillp71]
DesertRatRacer Offline
Rookie

Registered: 11/30/17
Posts: 84
Loc: Southern California
Originally Posted By a_d_a_m
Please tell me the Montego is going to get Cyclone stripes.


I didn't give it much thought but that would be cool. I do kinda want to fix all the body damage, but leave it aged and ratty looking. Adding some aged stripes on that might be a possibility.

Originally Posted By BigNSlow
Why not 2003+ frame to get the benefits of rack and pinion and better handling?


Originally Posted By a_d_a_m
I'm guessing because the car was cheap and available.


Adam basically hit it spot on, I was kinda in a hurry to find a good car, and the cheaper the better. Also I heard that some of the 2003+ had problems with frontend and steering rack wearing out quick. Also I didn't want any with the drive by wire, or any car so nice that I didn't want to rip it apart.
_________________________
1997 Ford Crown Vic P71
1997 Lincoln Mark VIII
1999 Ford F-150 5.4
1970 Ford Galaxie 500
2001 Mercury Marquis LS / 1968 Mercury Montego MX Station Wagon





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#3886426 - 02/23/18 03:33 AM Re: 68 Ford Build with Crown Vic Frame Swap / Install [Re: SteveH]
DesertRatRacer Offline
Rookie

Registered: 11/30/17
Posts: 84
Loc: Southern California
Originally Posted By Cheapthrillp71
I started a similar project years ago with an 07 p71 and a 66 Galaxie. Got the p71 frame done to match the Galaxie, but the Galaxie itself just ended up being to rotten to follow through with.

Good luck on your swap. Looking forward to updates.


Thanks, that sucks with the galaxie, I think I seen something very similar in a junkyard video on YouTube. Should have another big update and video again soon. Almost done with disassembly and prep with both cars. Then after a couple more things can start test fitting the fit.


Originally Posted By rswinks
Looks like one heck of a project. Certainly going to be following this thread.


Yea, a few times I've wondered what I'm getting my self into, but just got to keep moving forward. It's going pretty smooth so far, the next big step is trying to raise and lower the body on the frame multiple times for fitment. I think my best budget option right now is to try some camper jacks. Looking at getting some tomorrow. Cool, glad you're following.

Originally Posted By SteveH
Doing something similar. 2000 CV frame for a 85 Country Squire. Using a 4.6 32V motor though. I guess I should start posting pics too.

I didn't choose the 2003+ as I wanted to keep the turbines. Unfortunately without the bigger brakes too.

Good luck and keep us posted.

Steve


Nice, definitely should share, the more info floating around the better. I wouldn't mind doing a 32v too, but not sure if that fits into my budget right now. Plus the 2v hits peak torque quicker, so might be a plus till I can afford to really build an engine. I'm guessing the turbines are the wheels? Thanks definitely going to keep everyone posted.
_________________________
1997 Ford Crown Vic P71
1997 Lincoln Mark VIII
1999 Ford F-150 5.4
1970 Ford Galaxie 500
2001 Mercury Marquis LS / 1968 Mercury Montego MX Station Wagon





Top
#3886738 - 02/23/18 11:35 AM Re: 68 Ford Build with Crown Vic Frame Swap / Install [Re: DesertRatRacer]
BigNSlow Offline
Aussie powered
Metroplectic

Registered: 01/31/03
Posts: 41277
Loc:
Originally Posted By DesertRatRacer
Adam basically hit it spot on, I was kinda in a hurry to find a good car, and the cheaper the better. Also I heard that some of the 2003+ had problems with frontend and steering rack wearing out quick. Also I didn't want any with the drive by wire, or any car so nice that I didn't want to rip it apart.


2003-2004 are not drive by wire. Never heard about steering rack issues but they are dime a dozen and can be had for cheap.
_________________________
Originally Posted By Ezbok58a
He runs a fake equipment install company just so he could run his vehicles with lights on them, and his hobbies include running motorcycles off the road, terrorizing civilians in Walmart parking lots, handing out pamphlets on Open Carry, backing into parked cars and then blaming it on the parked car, securing perimeters, getting into conflicts that no rational person gets into, and helping stranded motorists...

I'm sure I'm missing some but that's techno as we know him...

Top
#3887082 - 02/23/18 05:17 PM Re: 68 Ford Build with Crown Vic Frame Swap / Install [Re: BigNSlow]
SteveH Offline
Rookie

Registered: 02/21/15
Posts: 71
Loc: Calgary
yes.. the 85 wagon has some rot on the passengers front rail. I would have to droop a bit of the frame to get at it anyways. It is repairable - i can weld and ect but uncertain what i will find when i get into it. It held dirt between the side of the frame rail and sill rail so it gonna be a bit of work.

The 2000 P71 was bought for the transmission and drive shaft and other little parts. It was vandalize. An $800 car and sold $794 worth of parts off of it. I just happen to keep the frame and 3.55 rear end.


Edited by SteveH (02/23/18 05:17 PM)
_________________________
1985 Country Squire (aka Woody)
1981 Lincoln Mark V1


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#3887674 - 02/24/18 12:06 PM Re: 68 Ford Build with Crown Vic Frame Swap / Install [Re: DesertRatRacer]
GrandMarq9807 Offline
Over the Hill

Registered: 05/10/10
Posts: 4420
Loc: Virginia
How are you planning on fitting the unibody to the CV chassis??? If lower section of the wagon is rotten, I'd look at cutting out the floor pan & welding body to MGM floor pan...

That basically how a Dodge Charger General Lee was constructed using a '99 CVPI donor...
_________________________
1998 Grand Marquis LS. 96K mi. .. Stock
2007 Grand Marquis GS. 90K mi. .. Stock
1996 F-150 XLT 196K mi Beater, Stock

----------My Toys---------(links are up)
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*****************NEW TOY!!!*********************
1969 Base Fairlane 302, C4, 45K mi(really!)

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