How To Marry A Mercury
The beauty of old trucks is the cab for anything from a half-ton pickup to a one-ton bobtail is bound to be the same. The only thing that usually separates one from another is the frame, and what might be bolted on behind the cab. For Larry Belter, a native of Batesville, Indiana, and former body shop owner of 30 years, the cab to a '56 F-350 flat rack that he picked up about four hours south of Indiana was all he really needed. The chassis and engine was going to come from a '98 Mercury Mountaineer that didn't need it anymore. The 30 years Larry spent doing heavy collision work really paid off when it came time to "marry the Merc's firewall and the '56's floor together. Everything from the steering wheel to the Merc dashboard on out to under the F-350's hood is pure '98, including a 302-inch EFI motor and four-speed overdrive automatic transmission. Thanks to the help of Larry's daughter Dannie, and his wife, Rose, the five-year project looks like it just rolled off the line as a '56 Ford pickup that married a new Mercury.
Editor's Note: Getting your truck into Readers' Trucks is a snap, of the camera, that is. All it takes is a stack of good-quality photos of your ride that are in focus and well lit. Due to the volume of mail we receive, we regret that we cannot return photographs. Send photos of your truck (no Polaroids or printouts) to: CCT, Readers' Trucks, 774 S. Placentia Ave., Placentia, CA 92870. It is important that you include a detailed description of the modifications you have made to your truck, including any interesting stories behind it.
A Slick From Down South ... Way Down South
For the North American folks who love '61- 66 Ford F-series trucks, they're affectionately known as "Slicks." We made the distinction of mentioning North American because after Anibal Angrigiani of Buenos Aires, Argentina, sent us shots of his bright red '66 and informed us "Slicks" were built from '62-67 with a body style we've never seen we knew we now have to include '67 in the range of years. In addition to the very unusual "split" Unibody look of Anibal's '66 it's also interesting to note the truck is factory equipped with a 292-inch Y-block motor. Anibal says his Argentino Phase 2 Y-block engine with its four downdraft Weber carburetors and MSD ignition puts out 450 bhp at 5,700 rpm. Other features include a Dana 44 rearend with 3.54:1 gears and a four-speed close-ratio transmission. Anibal went on to say that he has owned his truck since he was 17 years old, and because of his country's weak economy it was a real struggle for him and his dad to build. We know what you mean, brother.