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Budget Cruiser - The Wife's XF wagon


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#1 BTTB

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Posted 14 January 2007 - 09:14 PM

So instead of waiting for the wifes Rodeo Crew Cab to sell
and having a bit of free time over Xmas

We decided to buy a few items and create a nice CHEAP Family
wagon to get through the next few years whilst other Projects
get more attention and will obviously take longer to finish

So this vehicle is all about how to make a nice cruiser on a very tight budget

I haven't set a specific budget for this car...
but I'm guessing it will be on the road and registered for less than $2k (including the purchase price)

Expect to have it ready for rego in February
(I hate nothing more than having to pay for rego on my EF on the 24th Dec)

We'll see...

Then later, it will have certain Fairlane items added so it's more comfortable


So
Over the last fortnight I've been searching for a cheap XF wagon to
get on the road for my wife, our 8 month old daughter, and the BUMP...
(which has yet to enter the world)

Whilst searching I came across a great many XF's ...
some of them going Very cheap...
so cheap they were gone before I even got to look at them

and others were a little over priced

This is what we got for around $1000 in total

A 1987 XF GL
4.1L (carb) 6 cyl, Column 3 speed Auto, 6 Seater Wagon
(bench removed, buckets fitted)
Dual Fuel (just out of date)

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A 1986 XF GL
4.1L (carb) 6 cyl, T-bar 3 speed Auto, 5 Seater Wagon

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A 1984 ZL Fairlane
4.1L (EFI) 6 cyl, T-bar 3 speed Auto

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more to come

‘I Started Out with Nothin and I Still Got Most of It Left’


#2 BTTB

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Posted 14 January 2007 - 09:16 PM

The First car we picked up on Friday was the ZL Fairlane and due to the stupid
Ramp setup on the Hire trailer (too short and mounted below the deck) it took about 30 mins to get the car onto
the trailer... eventually we parked the trailer near an embankment, put the ramps out too the
ground and drove the Fairlane onto the high ground and thus onto the trailer.

This car was cheap because of where the rust was...

The Mechanic (who was operating the car yard) felt that it was too much trouble for himself to finish... even though he had started repairs :weirdo:

Now these rusty sections could be easily repaired and we could have just
registered the Fairlane and driven it... but that would defeat the purpose

We really need a wagon (4 kids - 2 human and 2 canine)

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Turns out the Fairlane was originally purchased by a Retiree
from new and is a genuine one owner car
(if you don't include the mechanic/salesman and myself)
The Interior is in Excellent condition for a 20year old car and is the main reason for
purchasing this vehicle...
a last minute decision (luxury purchase) you might say

The complete interior and electrics from the rear doors forward will be
transferred into the White wagon after the Wagon has been registered.
(we will utilise the roof-lining and rear trim from the red wagon also)

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As you can see the engine bay is relatively spotless too...
the vehicle having only travelled 263,000 km's thus far.
The Motor, Trans, Suspension, Wheels, Tyres, Powersteering, Aircon and Electrics were also in excellent shape ! BONUS
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I was contemplating fitting the complete front end panels and lights from the Fairlane to the wagon but this would mean they would have to be resprayed
and besides... I'll recoup more by selling the hanging panels from the Fairlane

The Fairlane cost less than half the Total purchase price of the three vehicles

‘I Started Out with Nothin and I Still Got Most of It Left’


#3 BTTB

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Posted 14 January 2007 - 09:17 PM

Second car we picked up around midday Friday was the Red XF GL Wagon

I found out about this car from a guy at work (Thanks Steve)
It belonged to Steve's father-in-law Bob, who is a retired Painter.
Steve said "he wanted $200 for it... its badly rusted but the drivetrain is in really good condition"
an understatement on both counts !

I'd also like to take the opportunity at this point to publicly thank Joel
for all his help on Friday and for sharing the driving/towing duties

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As you can clearly see... Cancer killed this car a long time ago.
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‘I Started Out with Nothin and I Still Got Most of It Left’


#4 BTTB

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Posted 14 January 2007 - 09:18 PM

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Yes... it even had duct tape covering the rust on the bonnet
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It has 40,000km's on the recoe'd motor, lowered suspension at the front,
new steering and suspension components, a new distributor, carby and radiator.
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Fortunately after ringing Bob he was in quite the Christmas mood
and we secured the car for a grand total of $50

BARGAIN !

The brakes, seatbelts, steering components and other parts from this car
will eventually be used on the 1968 XT Wagon Project (ZB Fairlane Wagon)

‘I Started Out with Nothin and I Still Got Most of It Left’


#5 BTTB

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Posted 14 January 2007 - 09:19 PM

Finally the third vehicle we retrieved on Friday was this eBay Win ?
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I spotted this wagon in the CAR PARTS section...
It was located in Beechworth, Vic... 4 hrs away by road :yeees:

It didn't come up in the usually search for "XF" so I'm thinking that a lot of
people looking for a cheap rust free wagon on LPG may not see this....

Starting bid was $200
here was the sellers description...

"87 XF FORD FALCON GL WAGON, NO DENTS OR RUST, EXCELLENT BLUE
INTERIOR, 250 AUTO, ON GAS, GHIA WHEELS, UNREGISTERED. IT HAS BEEN
PARKED UP FOR 12 MONTHS AFTER REG RAN OUT AND UPDATED TO ANOTHER
VEHICLE. ANY FURTHER ENQURIES YOU CAN CONTACT ME ON 042xxx3074 OR EMAIL.THANKYOU."

There was only the two pics (from my initial post) to go on.

Now I've highlighted the contact part for a reason....

The guy had 45 Feed-backs ~ 100% Positive
(the majority of feedback being from purchases, not sales)

Saturday week ago I decided to ring the guy and ask a few questions,
it was really hard to believe this thing had NO RUST !
Its a 19 year old car ffs!

So I rang the mobile...
no answer... left a message to call me back
24hrs later... no reply

OK we'll email the questions... I just wanted to know if it
had absolutely no rust and when the LPG tank expired...
24hrs later... no reply...

rang again Monday... message bank again

rang Tuesday and three times Wednesday
(leaving one message to PLEASE call me back)
No Return call at all... did this guy DIE or something ?

The Auction ended at 5:45pm Wednesday
We Won !
but only after two other bidders played cat and mouse over 20 bids

I sniped it within 3 seconds of auctions end for $10 below my maximum bid

Sent the guy an email that night stating we wanted to pick it up Friday arvo

24hrs later no reply... and no invoice details....

Got the wife to ring him... Got message bank...
so she left a message saying we wanted to pick it up Friday

BINGO... 5mins later he rang

/SIGH

what a Puts!
I mean why state ANY FURTHER ENQURIES YOU CAN CONTACT ME ON 042xxx3074 OR EMAIL. if you never intend to answer any enquiries?

So my questions went unanswered....
and I probably worried unecessarily.
but one reply would have taken care of that...

‘I Started Out with Nothin and I Still Got Most of It Left’


#6 BTTB

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Posted 14 January 2007 - 09:20 PM

Left for Beechworth around 3pm Friday and arrived at 7pm

Funnily enough the guy complained about the amount of calls and emails he received about the car...
he told his wife to "ignore them"
I bit my tongue...

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Gave the car a thorough going over and sure enough...
Virtually NO RUST! ... just a tiny bubble here
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The rest is spotless

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/Whew

(as I said to Joel, "if this thing is rusty I'm going to tell him to jam it up his A R S E") :rant:

LPG system was out of date by roughly 6months (installed in June 96)

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Grabbed the new battery and petrol to fire it up...
(I hate winching cars onto trailers and this trailer was crap for that anyways)
and the guy says the fuel pump is shot...
OK... lets see if it still has LPG

Fired up straight away... with a little tappet noise



Turns out though that the paint was shot.... sitting in the sun had powderised it... and the front has been road blasted
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OK... it needs a respray... I can live with that.

Somewhere along the line someone fitted an LTD bonnet thingy,
it will be eBayed at some point.
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It has 4 wheel discs, and was originally a 6 seater
(still has the column shift)
we will return it to bench front... more seats the better

(If you want to swap your bench seat setup for some buckets PM me)

After telling the guy what it was going to be used for... he sweetened the
deal and handed over the previously fitted Millford Cargo Barrier
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All was forgiven

We loaded up and headed home...
arriving back at base Just before I turned into a Pumpkin

Thanks Again JOEL... one helluva long day :eclipsee_

Fiddled with it for half an hour on Saturday
XC GS rims and 95% tread tyers will do for RWC
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‘I Started Out with Nothin and I Still Got Most of It Left’


#7 BTTB

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Posted 14 January 2007 - 09:21 PM

I'm not totally certian on wheel choice yet...

but the exterior (finished product) should resemble this photoshop

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‘I Started Out with Nothin and I Still Got Most of It Left’


#8 BTTB

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Posted 14 January 2007 - 09:23 PM

Because this isn't going to be a highly exciting thread...
I'm going to post updates on a weekly basis

I gave the car a thorough check over and
Found a small amount of rust in the inside front edge of the bonnet,
and at the bottom of the rear section of the front guards.

Thursday morning I took it down to the local jet wash
(ours is broken) and wasted $7... at least it got the MOULD off the
windows and the built up crud out of the hard to get too spots...

When it rained (Thursday afternoon ?) I got out there and gave it a TUB
and boy-o-boy did it NEED IT !

the Mould/Dirt was baked on!

So it looked a lot better after that

Friday We cleaned the windows
(badly mind you... need some methylated spirits I think)
and got some window cleaner on the rear panel and rubbed
that and more dirt came off... leaving a clean spot

So out came the heavy duty polish....
and you can see the difference on the part of bonnet I started to polish
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Checked the under bonnet fuild levels also... and all were low...
Topped them up and whilst waitng for the Auto to reach operating
temp for its check A clacking noise has developed from the engine...
I suspect the usual bent pushrod, and will look into it
after the jet washer is operational again sometime soon.

Pulled the front seats also and repaired the usual factory seat bolt holder spread...
with the vice grips and MIG welder ! Then refitted them after giving the interior a good vacuum...

also refitted the Milford Cargo barrier... and as you can see the smaller and
older of our two canine children has already called dibs on her riding position
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I also De-badged the "Alloy Head II" Badges from the front quarters
along with the "Falcon GL" and the Blue Oval from the taligate...

and I got bored again last night so I did another Photoshop
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I've secured some more lowered springs (front and rear) from a guy from
work who wants to RAISE his newly acquired XF ute (he's using it for towing)
I'll probably wait til RWC is completed before I fit them though

‘I Started Out with Nothin and I Still Got Most of It Left’


#9 BTTB

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Posted 14 January 2007 - 09:44 PM

Slowly purchasing parts and peices for the build
The Wife got some Nice Car seat Covers
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And a Stereo as her belated Xmas Pressies
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Just waitng on a mates Carport to be built later this month
so we can tear it down and tart it up a little !

‘I Started Out with Nothin and I Still Got Most of It Left’


#10 XF_Freak

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Posted 15 January 2007 - 09:23 AM

Fantastic write up mate. Whilst its not a typical street machine rebuild, i took more interest in this as you've written it well and was a good story to follow. Looking forward to the ups and downs of this build.

Nice dog by the way, very cute.

#11 UNLSHD

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Posted 15 January 2007 - 09:38 AM

HEY MAN. LOOKS LIKE UR PUTTIN IN SOME HARD YARDS ON THE WIFES RIDE. GOOD WORK. GOOD TO SEE GUYS ARE PUTTIN THERE GIRLS INTO DECENT FORDS TOO. I CONVERTED MINE FROM HOLDEN DRIVING A VL INTO THIS. BUT THEN, WHO COULD RESIST. HAHA

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I LOVE MY FORDS, V8S AND BABES

#12 drew442

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Posted 15 January 2007 - 10:54 AM

very well written i like it. i will wait anxiously on the next update.
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12 months off the forum. Average posts is still 5 per day.

#13 GLDRSH

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Posted 15 January 2007 - 12:24 PM

OMFG look at trhe interior in the fairlane...oh my god!

you got the best deal ive ever seen ever......great stuff..ill be watching...this will be a nice build!

WWW.TURBO351.COM

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#14 evan

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Posted 15 May 2007 - 06:01 PM

any news boss??

#15 aaron_hogan

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Posted 16 May 2007 - 04:46 PM

I think this is a good concept. I like the pic of it with the BA rims. Would probably be the most expensive part of the car though.

I recently opted to purchase a similar car for my sister and her husband as they just had their first kid. Needed a family truckster!

This started life as an XF fairmont ghia wagon. Someone has at some stage up-spec'd it to a FE LTD front and rims. It has power everything and is on gas. Once upon a time had a dickey seat. I'll keep an eye out for another. I reckon it looks like a hearse! (needs a TOBIN BROS RACING sticker on it lol).

Only issues is that it is ridiculously lowered, i believe chopped is more appropriate, which we hope to remedy soon. I can either dump the ass end to match (already got lowered leafs) or raise the front. Looking for some stock or slightly lowered springs. I can swap for some nice KING super-lows if you feel like going even lower?

It was back-firing and carrying on when i pickled it up. Needed all the vac lines checked over to solve that. Got a couple of power windows not working as they should. After fixing many of these little niggles now the original owner wants to buy it back!

All in all its a luxury barge of a car that could really only be improved with the fitment of a cleveland....serious consideration if she hangs onto it. If she decides to sell i will be a little hurt.

Anyway, i reckon its worth fitting the fairlane front and re-spraying it (after all its only white!). Personally i think all ghia level XF's should have got the base spec fairlane front to set them apart from the falcon GL. Take a look at our one and decide for yourself.

#16 aaron_hogan

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Posted 16 May 2007 - 04:49 PM

sorry the pic had to be re-sized...here it is

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#17 BTTB

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Posted 29 June 2007 - 12:25 AM

lots more has happened over the last 6 months nearly...
wow its been a while since i posted in here !

I'll update tomorrow

‘I Started Out with Nothin and I Still Got Most of It Left’


#18 brodzta

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Posted 29 June 2007 - 12:54 AM

well post.... we NEED to know
85 XF Fairmont Ghia-
monro GT gas shocks, on gas, 4.1 EFI, stock.... for the moment

85 Laser ghia.. runaround/flog about
pushrods = :hy:

#19 evan

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Posted 29 June 2007 - 06:34 AM

awesome! can't wait to see how it turned out!

#20 BIGCAV

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Posted 29 June 2007 - 07:30 AM

haha i was gonna bid on that wagon lol. except the ******* wouldnt reply and iv already had about 500 bucks stolen by dodgy ebayers. glad to c someone who will appreciate it get it atleast.

man that photoshop is a1, that things mad, i recon the next best ford to a hardtop is a xf wagon done up. i love the chrome rack things on the roof 2 tho.

would u look at that, the suns fully up, i didnt notice, night all, or morning




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