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Thread: Ian's Boxy Wagon

  1. #1
    Member ianmcc's Avatar
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    Default Ian's Boxy Wagon

    Greetings from Calgary!
    Just picked up a 1979 Country Squire wagon for $0.08 per pound or $500!
    It's a 351W with the Holley carb and a boinked rear tailgate and broken rear glass (ugh!).
    Me and a friend went out and with six new Autolite 26 plugs (the others will have to wait) and a bunch of gas and had it up and running in about 15 minutes.
    Judging by the receipts in the glove box it was last on the road around 2003.

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    Ran great but a little hard to start at first. Also has a seized front drivers caliper that was smoking like crazy once I got it on the driveway.

    I am going to need a bit of items so I will be trolling the For Sale ads. Anyone in and around the Southern Alberta area with a stash of parts?

  2. #2
    Lost and driftin' Arquemann's Avatar
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    Nice wagon!

    With a tune up and maybe a carb rebuilt / cleaning she'll be tearing up the streets in no time.
    Aside from a tailgate and glass, brake parts and such are cheap and readily available from RockAuto.
    1985 Mercury Grand Marquis LS, "Maisa"

  3. #3
    all the CFI are belong to me
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    Yesssssss another ratty box wagon roaming the streets

    That thing is just...chef's kiss.

    Logistically, getting things from me to you is pretty impractical and expensive, but I'll watch for a wagon locally for your glass - they do turn up here (in Detroit, not Windsor) pretty often. You could try posting in demo derby groups on Facebook; a lot of those guys remove window glass non-destructively so it's an option to maybe find the glass cheap.

    Current driver: 84 TC
    Panthers, Parked: 83 GM 2dr | 85 CS | 86 GM | 88 TC | 91 GM
    Not Panthers: 85 Ranger | Ranger trailer | 05 Focus
    RIP: 97 CV | 83 TC | 04 Focus | Junkyards

  4. #4
    Still Wrenchin'! friskyfrankie's Avatar
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    The grill alone might be worth the money - congrats and best of luck with it. I love to see folks take "throw aways" and make them functional again. The ultimate in recycling!!

    P.S. Will have to flush the fuel tank and check pump and lines. Same with brakes.
    What I Own: 1993 Mercury Grand Marquis GS
    What I Help Maintain: 1996 CV / 1988 CV / 1988 Tempo

  5. #5
    GMN Regular WagonMan's Avatar
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    I have 4 rear windows........in Connecticut. WagonMan
    89 Colony Park
    90 Colony Park
    70 HEMI Daytona Convertible

  6. #6
    The Brown Blob 87gtVIC's Avatar
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    Nice score. Id run it just as is...with proper rear window of course. Looks like a fun ride.
    ~David~

    My 1987 Crown Victoria Coupe: The Brown Blob
    My 2004 Mercedes Benz E320:The Benz

    Quote Originally Posted by ootdega View Post
    My life is a long series of "nevermind" and "I guess not."
    Quote Originally Posted by DerekTheGreat View Post
    But, that's just coming from me, this site's biggest pessimist. Best of luck

  7. #7
    Member ianmcc's Avatar
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    I found a complete rear wagon tailgate (wrong color and no wood grain) about four hours away and a heated glass about 3 hours away. Looks like a road trip for future Ian.
    We looked at the gas gauge (below empty) and decided to givver and dumped all the gas we brought into the tank and hope for the best.
    Forgot to check on the coolant before we left (checked it en route and she built pressure and wasn't empty).
    Also leaking a bit of oil from the PCV valve-if it leaks oil she has oil!
    All the other levels were good-trans, PS and brake levels all good. Resisted the temptation to try out things like the radio and heater controls until I got it home.

  8. #8
    Wagon Addicted Tiggie's Avatar
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    20 years is a long hibernation! Imagine how minty it was that long ago.
    1990 Country Squire - weekend cruiser, next project
    1988 Crown Vic LTD Wagon - waiting in the wings

    GMN Box Panther History
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  9. #9
    Member ianmcc's Avatar
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    Future plans include going through the entire braking system and possibly replace all the hard and soft lines. Thinking about a rear end swap but it has 2.26 highway gears so that should stay for now.
    And all the rubber lines under the hood, carb kit and new fuel pump. But really its just going to be a level one tidy and get things in order first.

  10. #10
    Member ianmcc's Avatar
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    And since I was concerned about driving on flat spotted tires I had already bought a set of 15" steelies and tires to replace the 14" pizza cutters (does come with all four original hubcaps in the back.
    And since I want to DD the behemoth I also picked up a set of 15x7 Explorer wheels just because.

    Click image for larger version. 

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  11. #11
    Pro Touring Panthers! Hearsesrock427's Avatar
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    Wow, a woodgrain trim car without cornering lights/ditch lights! Can't remember the last time I saw one optioned like that. Best wishes on your journey of ascension to the panther master race!
    '89 Grand Marquis "Ebyt"
    '85 Grand Marquis "Eva"
    '94 Caprice "Kira"
    '84 Town Car "Stacy"
    '79 New Yorker “Anita” coming June
    '79 LTD-S coming August 2023

  12. #12
    Member ianmcc's Avatar
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    Well there is so much broken glass inside the tailgate that it is easier to vacuum it all out with the motor and regulators removed. That gives me a chance to see why the motor wasn't working.
    Pulled it all out (drilled out the rivets) and found the motor wasn't so bad and worked when bench tested. So checked out the interlock switch and with a minor adjustment I got the dash switch and key switch to activate the motor. Result!
    Next is to install the new old glass and check on alignment and guide felts and make sure I have a working defroster.

  13. #13
    Member ianmcc's Avatar
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    So I have an issue while replacing the rear tailgate glass. I was able to get the motor working and the dash and lock also work. But there is a loose rod attached to the inner handle that appears to be a lockout for the inside handle. Unless the lever is activated the handle won't open. So I figure the glass being lowered triggers this rod. But I have no idea where the bent end goes. And there is a plastic retainer that looks like it goes into a blank hole but again no idea where. The lever is currently on the drivers side but that may be wrong. These are the best pics I could take.
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  14. #14
    Member ianmcc's Avatar
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    Any advice? Pics if anyone has them!

  15. #15
    Road Warrior Kodachrome Wolf's Avatar
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    When the window travels down, it goes into that hook end of the rod and pulls the rod down allowing for the inside handle to be used so the tailgate will flip down. When the glass is raised, the hook just kinda hangs out.

    As far as the retainer, I'm not terrible sure.

    My Cars:
    -1964 Comet 202 (116K Miles) - Awaiting Resurrection
    -1986 Dodge D-150 Royale SE (112K Miles) - Awaiting TorqueFlite
    -1987 Grand Marquis Colony Park LS (325K Miles) - April 2017 + September 2019 POTM Winner
    -1997 Grand Marquis LS (230K Miles) - The Daily Workhorse & March 2015 + January 2019 POTM Winner

  16. #16
    Member ianmcc's Avatar
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    Well that makes sense in that I couldn't see where it connects to. And the retainer tie maybe just keeps the cloth cover in place. Thanks for the info!

  17. #17
    Member ianmcc's Avatar
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    Well I did get the rear tailgate glass installed and working. Only problem was because of the damage to the tailgate panel the license plate screws were pushed far enough in to impact the bottom of the glass.
    So took the slide hammer to it and pulled the panel out enough so it would let the glass lower. Will be sourcing a replacement tailgate in the future.
    Hope the video link works.
    https://www.facebook.com/ian.mccrimm...16659947134557

    Coinciding with the US Memorial Day weekend the local PnP had a 50$ off sale. And wouldn't you know it but two fresh arrivals hit the yard-an 89 and a 91 GM.
    I grabbed the inner door cards and headliner from the darker interior of the two. But smaller rear brakes were of no use to me and the master cylinders were the newer style and metric as I was hoping for a proportioning valve and maybe better brake lines as I had to cut mine and remove with a 6-point socket. I guess new lines are in order. And the rear brake line literally fell apart in my hands so its gotta go. Have a new rear brake hose-not taking any chances as I suspect the lines are rusted solid.
    Also when working on the brakes I started to bleed the brakes when the rear started leaking and found out the fronts were seized. I also think the prop valve is stuck as I cannot get it all apart. Lots of crud in it so I also picked up a used unit from a Jeep YJ. Will try it out but planning on an adjustable valve in the future as well.

    And finally got 50% of the wheels mounted and test fitted...

    Click image for larger version. 

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  18. #18
    Lost and driftin' Arquemann's Avatar
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    Those wheels look way better on the car than I would've expected just from the wheel image. Looks great!
    1985 Mercury Grand Marquis LS, "Maisa"

  19. #19
    The Brown Blob 87gtVIC's Avatar
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    Nice work on getting the rear window in and functioning. There is no reason you cannot scrounge up the brake stuff from the 89 and 91 and put it all into your car. If you are gonna make lines already you can just swap in all the of newer bits.

    Limited wheels look good on there.
    ~David~

    My 1987 Crown Victoria Coupe: The Brown Blob
    My 2004 Mercedes Benz E320:The Benz

    Quote Originally Posted by ootdega View Post
    My life is a long series of "nevermind" and "I guess not."
    Quote Originally Posted by DerekTheGreat View Post
    But, that's just coming from me, this site's biggest pessimist. Best of luck

  20. #20
    Wagon Addicted Tiggie's Avatar
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    Wheels look great on there.
    1990 Country Squire - weekend cruiser, next project
    1988 Crown Vic LTD Wagon - waiting in the wings

    GMN Box Panther History
    Box Panther Horsepower and Torque Ratings
    Box Panther Production Numbers

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