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Ford “Thunderbolts” Page #2


Found some more COOL Old Ford Racer's for everyone to enjoy smile


1962 Ford Galaxie Light Weight
427 CI, Phil Bonner Drag Car

By mid-year 1962, the powers at Ford fully recognized that in spite of the fact that their cars were performing well, they were still at a great weight disadvantage. It was bad enough that the GM offerings were lighter than the Fords, but the Chrysler products with their uni-body construction were in a different league while remaining in the same class. In an effort to gain equality, the construction of approximately 11 cars for drag-racing competition was ordered.

These 11 cars began life as 1962 Galaxie two-door sedans that were manufactured at Ford's Wayne, Michigan, assembly plant. Vehicle identification numbers indicated that all were August 1962 produced "G" code 406/405 equipped. Lacking a sound deadener and seam sealers, the cars were delivered to the Experimental Vehicles Garage for additional modifications.

Fitted with aluminum front bumpers, fiberglass front fenders and trunk lids, the "lightweights" shed hundreds of pounds. Inside the car's accessories such as the radio and heater were eliminated. Lighter bucket-style seats replaced the stock bench.

These special vehicles were delivered to the following racers Dick Brannan, Jerry Harvey; Phil Bonner (two cars, the second of which, this 1962 Galaxie lightweight 2W51G156035, was that car as a replacement for the heavily damaged first one he received.) Ed Martin For, Tasca Ford, Gas Ronda, Les Ritchey, Bob Ford, Jim Price and Jerry Alderman. Ownership of the cars was transferred to the respective racer for the sum of a dollar, thus relieving Ford Motor Company of any liability.

These cars, from a Ford sponsorship level had a relatively short career. This was verified by the famous racer (and 1962 recipient) Gas Ronda that stated he was pleased with the car's performance, but lamented the late delivery stating, "By the time we got the 1962 lightweights it was already time to start working on the 1963 cars." Many of these 62 lightweights frames ended up under 1963 bodies. 


The 1962 Bonner Lightweight Galaxie's provenance is as follows:

- Produced by Ford Wayne Michigan Plant August 2, 1962.
- Late 1962, Phil Bonner
- Mid-1963 to May 1964, Marcus Moore
- May 1964 to April 1966, Waner Hardie
- April 1966 to July 1988, Bobby Dixon/Don Lanthrip
- July 1988 to March 2007, E. Edwin Lavender
- March 2007 to Present, Ellis Collection


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1963 Ford Galaxie Light Weight 427ci

Ford’s 1963 Galaxie 500 and 500XL Sports Hardtops were slippery enough to win the 1963 NASCAR Championship, but their drag racing clients were facing even tougher competition on the strip. The call for action was so urgent that Ford merchandising manager V.P. Motto issued a memo calling for the construction of 200 lightweight Galaxie Specials. The new 427 NASCAR engine was specified along with an aluminum-case T-10 four speed; a host of components were deleted, the cars were fitted with fiberglass body panels and aluminum bumpers and, with one exception, finished in Corinthian White with code 95 Red vinyl interiors.

The 1963½ Galaxie lightweight offered here has a confirmed history as a Tasca Ford car. It saw competition at Pomona Raceway and still bears a 1964 Winternationals decal. Still sporting its oval air cleaner, dual four-barrel carbs and aluminum intake, the 427 is mated to an aluminum T-10 and bellhousing, and surrounded by fiberglass hood, fenders and fender liners.

The interior presents the most obvious signs of this car’s intended use. Bostrum lightweight buckets replace the stock bench seat; the heater, radio, clock, armrests and dash pad are all missing, and the shifter sprouts from under a thin rubber mat rather than carpeting.

Especially well documented, this original 1963½ 427 Lightweight Galaxie is exactly as V.P. Motto specified it 46 years ago.

Highlights:

- 1963 1/2 Ford Galaxie lightweight
- Corinthian white in color with red vinyl interior
- Bostrum lightweight bucket seats
- Rubber floor mats
- Heater, radio and clock deleted along with all sound deadeners and body seam sealers
- Thin cardboard sun visors
- Door panels with no armrests
- Dash pad was also deleted
- Fiberglass front fenders, inner fenders, hood and trunk lid
- Aluminum front and rear bumpers and supporting brackets
- Factory lightened frame
- Heavy duty suspension and brakes
- Aluminum bell housing
- Tasca Ford history with California race heritage
- Raced at Pomona Raceway and still carries a Winternationals decal from 1964
- Extensive documentation accompanies the car.

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1967 Ford Fairlane Hardtop 427 CI, Lightweight, 1 of 35


Ford’s first order of business for the 1967 drag racing season was to unseat Chrysler’s latest crop of Hemi Super Stockers, and they took care of that business with the second-generation 427 Fairlane. Early testing by Ford Drag Racing Coordinator Dick Brannon showed that a specially lightened version powered by the “Medium Riser”-spec 427 consistently ran record-beating elapsed times.

The 1967 Ford 427 Fairlane Lightweight 2-Door Sedan offered here is truly unique, one of only 35 lightweights delivered in 2-door “post” body style rather than the GT and GTA hardtop. This rare “North of the Border” racer is originally from British Columbia, specially ordered by Meyers Holland Motors of Nanaimo on Vancouver Island and purchased by drag racer Donnie Hackwood of nearby Cedar, BC.

The 427 under the Fairlane’s scooped fiberglass hood is fitted with a dual quad tunnel wedge intake manifold topped by dual 652cfm Holley carburetors. The 427‘s notoriously tough internals include a forged steel crankshaft and 12:1 compression pistons, and a solid lifter cam with 0.600 inch lift and 324 degrees duration enables reliable 7500 rpm shift points. A Ford top-loader four speed transmission with a stout 1 3/8 inch input shaft sends the 427’s considerable torque to a bulletproof Ford 9-inch Detroit Locker rear end running 4:57:1 gears; traction is maximized by a set of Lakewood bars.

With documentation that includes a Marti Report, this veteran of Northwest/West Coast Super Stock drag racing is one of Ford’s fastest Fairlanes, with a best quarter-mile run of 11.41 seconds at 121 mile per hour.

Highlights:

- Historical documentation by Travis Miller
- Originally sold to D.H. Hackwood of Cedar, British Columbia, Canada by Meyers Holland Ford
- Original 427 Medium Riser engine
- Factory dual four-barrel tunnel wedge intake
- Two Holley 652 cfm carburetors with Ford progressive linkage
- Ford top loader
- Ford 9” rear end
- Factory lightweight lift-off hood
- Marti Report


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1964 Ford Galaxie Lightweight 427/600 HP 4-Speed


Ford built just 25 Galaxie Lightweight 4-speed factory drag cars in 1964. Delivered in Wimbledon White with Red interiors, they flat out dominated Stock and Super Stock and remain rare and valuable to this day. The Galaxie Lightweight offered here was campaigned under sponsorship from Osburn Trucking of Taylor, MI in AA/Super Stock. Purchased new through legendary Bob Ford in Dearborn, Michigan, it was a regular participant at Detroit Dragway and Milan Michigan, also appearing at the NHRA Winternationals in Pomona.

Starting with original, rust free and undamaged metal, it has been restored to race ready preparation in its original livery and retains the original special seats and door panels. The 427/600 HP-based driveline is all period-correct and the car shows just 20 documented miles on the odometer. Since its restoration it has been featured at the 30th Ault Park Concours D'Elegance in Cincinnati, Ohio, and won Best of the Best in Memory Lane at the 2007 Hot Rod Reunion at National Trails Raceway.

An important and whimsical artifact from Ford’s glorious early-Sixties Super Stock campaigns.

Highlights:

- One of 25 4-speed lightweights built
- Restored to as race condition
- Original seats and door panels
- Original rust free, damage free sheet metal
- Purchased thru Bob Ford in Dearborn, Michigan
- Raced at Detroit Dragway and Milan Michigan with trips to Indy and Pomona, California for the Winter Nationals
- Featured at the 30th Ault Park Concours D'Elegance in Cincinnati, Ohio
- Won Best of the Best in Memory Lane at the 2007 Hot Rod Reunion at National Trails Raceway (National Dragster August 10th, 2007)
- Photo documentation of body-off restoration
- Era correct block, heads, intake, carbs, etc.
- 20 actual documented miles


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1964 Mercury A/FX Comet Caliente 427/425 HP Hi-Riser, 4-Speed



Lincoln-Mercury plunged into drag racing full force in 1964. Like their Ford cousins had done with the Thunderbolts, L-M contracted with Dearborn Steel Tubing to modify their fleet of 21 new 427 Hi-Riser Comets for the new A/FX class.

Chicagoans Ed Rachanski and Gary Dyer ran one under the banner of the Chicago Mercury Dealers’ Association as part of the “Marauder Comet Drag Team”. Rachanski took over the driving duties from Dyer in 1965 and continued to race the car as the “Marauder” and “Super Marauder” on the Midwest match race circuit.

Now restored to its original configuration by Donald Allen of Allen Restorations in Clarksville, Georgia, the former Ed Rachanski 1964 A/FX Comet Caliente is finished in factory standard-issue Wimbledon White with a Red bucket seat interior. The fiberglass hood, fenders, doors and front bumper and plexiglass windows that shaved pounds off the car are as original.

The matching-numbers Ford 427/425 HP “Hi-Riser” engine nestled in the widened engine room, one of the most potent factory race engines of the era, is also back to factory tune. Fed by two large leading edge scoops in the fiberglass hood, its clout comes from inline dual Holleys, an aluminum intake, solid lifter cam, high-flow heads and tubular steel headers. Like all the FX Comets, this one carries the iron-clad Borg Warner T-10 4-speed and 9-inch rear end.

The Ed Rachanski A/FX Comet Caliente is a wonderful reminder of Lincoln-Mercury’s salad days at the top of Factory Experimental racing.

Highlights:

- Ed Rachanski owned car new
- This car is believed to be the Ed Rachanski Mercury Comet, driven by Gary Dyer, and known as the "Chicago Marauder"
- 427/425 HP Ford Hi Riser motor
- Borg Warner T-10 4-speed transmission and a Ford 9" rear differential
- Matching numbers
- Restored to like new condition with original factory color of Wimbledon White, Red interior and lightweight plexiglass


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1964 Ford Galaxie XL 427ci, R-Code 4-Speed .

- 427-425hp dual quads
- Factory Long Branch cast iron headers
- 4-speed toploader transmission
- 9" rear with 3.50 gears
- Paint code "M" Wimbledon White
- Red bucket seat interior
- California car
- Radio delete
- Correct 15" Kelsey Hayes wheels with spinner hubcaps
- Heavy duty suspension
- R Code specific items, big brakes, 3/8" fuel line


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1964 Mercury Comet Countdown 3



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Cool cars Tango, thanks! Here's the one that gave me the "fever". Local guy for us. I only had to walk a couple of blocks to his gas station to see this car. Bill McDuell was his name and he raced a variety of cars from this Comet to a 65 Fastback Mustang, then a Barracuda Funny car and then he moved and I lost track of him. But I give him credit for stirring up the carnut in me!...CR

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1967 Mercury Comet 427 Wagon The Collector


- This car is photographed on page 138 of Total Performers: Ford Drag Racing in the 1960's
- Runner up to Bill (Grumpy) Jenkins at Bristol in 1967 Original documentation including:
- Deluxe Marti Report which states shipment to Sandy Elliot, Ltd, Chatham, Ontario, Canada
- Heater Delete
- Radio Delete
- Original protest letter written to Nascar dated July 6, 1967
- Nascar response letter, confirming car legal for AA/S Class



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