Ford had  abetter
was called aGALAXIE!

This forum is for Club Members' stories & articles...

In Honor of 3D68Z140436
(My First Galaxie)

by John R

Mom's Galaxie?
by Jeff Bombay

If you had contacted me 3 months earlier, I would not have joined as I had no Galaxie, only the memories of a 1964 2 door fastback bought new in 1964 by my parents in Cleveland Ohio. It was black with a red interior, had a 352 with a 4 barrel and an automatic transmission. At 12 years of age I almost cried as we traded in a perfectly good yellow and black 1959 Ford 2 door on a car I couldn’t figure out why we wanted. I guess I was to young to realize that my formative teenage years were only a few years away.

I remember that at one point I became interested in the Galaxie and was allowed by my parents to tinker with it. I abused my trust to the point where I convinced them that what they “really needed” was a set of 4:10 gears in the Ford. Believe it or not, they went for it! At which point I decided that even though the 352 came alive with the addition of the gears, it still wasn’t good enough for my mother to take to the grocery store.... SHE NEEDED MORE CUBIC INCHES!!!! Now please understand, my parents were very intelligent people. In spite of that I sold them on a 410 Mercury V8 with a 428 cam, intake and a set of headers. Dad was afraid of the car at this point and bought himself a safe little 6 cylinder Falcon, but Mom was enjoying this. After three Cruise-O-Matic transmissions, I explained, with the same finesse as before, how she needed a 4 speed transmission...NO WAY!!! was her answer, I had hit the wall! “The best laid plans of mice and men (read that...a teenage boy) do often go astray”, so...”When life gives you lemons...sell Mom on a full race automatic!!.” A new business in Cleveland was Transmissions by Bruce. He built race transmissions of all types. He explained how the Cruise-O-Matic case split under hard loads and shifts and created an inside oil leak which caused the loss of reverse. He built me a full race Cruise-O-Matic, reinforced with a girdle that strengthened the case. I still remember my mother, God rest her soul, signing the check for the transmission while Bruce himself stood there trying to figure out how the hell I had done that. Trust me, it wasn’t easy, but the rewards were great.

I still remember vividly sitting at a stop light on Pearl Road when a 1966 GTO pulled up along side, the driver glancing laughingly at Mom. Of course I was embarrassed to be with my mother on a Friday night, but there I was. Her comment..”What does he think is so funny?” My answer...”You! NOW FLOOR IT!” As the light turned green she stood on it, full automatic through all three gears, tire smoke at each gear change, with the GTO right beside her...but only for the first 5 feet! In a blink she was in 3rd gear, ran it up, then let off, she didn’t want to speed but liked getting there fast. The GTO flew past, mad as hell that an old lady had pulled him out of the hole by several car lengths and was running away until she let off. Tire smoke filled the intersection we had just left. She eventually sold me the car a year later as I think she realized it had been mine for years, if you know what I mean. I raced the car for a couple of years, legally and not so legally and then sold it to move to Denver. I always wondered where it ended up.

Flash forward to 1997, Imperial, Nebraska, I’m there looking for Ford parts. The parts manager of the Ford dealer and I are talking and he tells me of a couple cars around, none I am interested in. For some reason, and the first time I had mentioned it in 20 years, I told him I would like to find a 1964 Galaxie fastback, black over red, big block, automatic like I had when I was a teenager. Kind of a big order, but to my surprise he said...”I have one at the house.” No, it was not MY car, but the perfect twin, identical, and very nice condition, although the price was very high, $350.00, but that included delivery to Denver so I went for it. How could I not?

Restoration has started, the car is apart. A built 428 engine, 4:10 gears, etc. The only problem was what would I do about the Cruise-O-Matic transmission? The 428 would quickly bust that case. One phone call and it was solved, Transmissions by Bruce was alive and well in Cleveland and was happy to do another Cruise-O-Matic for me. It’s on the way to him as I write. So much for making a long story short. I have a hard time doing that, but I will soon send pictures as the Galaxie goes back together after a full ground up restoration. Where’s Mom and her checkbook when I need her?

Jeff Bombay

(P.D. 10/26/97)

Wives, Girlfriends & Cars
by Ted McMurray

Now here is a subject! I know I won’t make everyone happy but it needs to be said. How many of you guys have wives or girlfriends that just can’t understand the big deal about your wheels? It’s just a big ugly car that takes time from me and you could buy a new car for what you have put into that old thing. Heard it! Been there and have done that! Over the years I have put a few dollars into my ‘64 but never took money from the family. I did odd jobs on cars for my “rod” money. The wife couldn’t understand my passion. Neither can I, other than I just like the lines and the looks of my two-door Galaxie XL.

How many of you guys include your ladies in your hobby? How can they understand the sweat, frustration, exhaustion or the satisfaction you feel if they themselves haven’t experienced it. If on the other hand you’ve tried to include them and they haven’t cared enough to try to get involved with you and your car, I’m sorry for you. Been there!

If you are one of those “macho” guys that think your ladies can’t cut it or understand it...guess again. Take it from me. After being there and trying that, I eliminated the problem (not caused by the car). I’ve been remarried now, eight years and I must say that I have an exceptional woman. I say woman with all due respect. She works eight to ten hours a day and does all the things I grew up to understand a woman should do around the house. She is my best friend, wife and lover and all around buddy. She helps on the car if I need her and I am happy to have her there . At my age (53) I am from an era where men did this and women did that. My wife is younger and came up with a different understanding, but she is the light of my life and our time together is special. I’ve wanted a supercharger for years. I didn’t need it...just wanted it. She took her bonus check and bought me a new SVO powerdyne (polished) supercharger. She hasn’t driven it since it was installed. It’s winter here and the car is stored. Come summer, I hope she does. She tells me she doesn’t want to ruin the car. She had a bad experience with an ex-husband who would not allow her to touch his ride. My philosophy is that it’s only a car. If it gets damaged - it’s insured. I am proud to see her drive the car we both invested time and money in. For you guys who include your ladies, thumbs up! For you ladies who won’t get involved with your man’s hobby...well you can’t expect him to get involved with yours. Guys and gals...get it together. Life is too short. Besides, if you really love each other, you both have to give a little. Try to enjoy each others hobbies. You’ll have a richer relationship for it.

From the Dock of Dads Boat...
Ted McMurray

(P.D. 7/26/97)

Looney Driving Laws from the
"Good Old Days"

And you thought all the idiot legislation was being passed today!

A piece of strange legislation passed many years ago in New York declares: "Two automobiles which are passing each other in opposite directions shall have the right of way."

Texas came up with an even stranger version of the same kind of law; "When two automobiles meet at an intersection, each shall stop and neither shall proceed until the other has gone."

Lisbon Falls, Maine has a unique way to collect revenue with their car "oil" law. "It cost the driver of an automobile a $1.00 fine for every drop of oil found on the pavement under the vehicle."

No one can legally drive an automobile down a street within the boudaries of Bossier City, Louisianna, and "ogle a woman in that way" as he passes. Offenders have to wear a pair of horse blinders in public for a period of 24 hours.

Carlsbad, New Mexico females had better not drive or even ride in an automobile while attired in a sheer nightgown because of a law still retained there!

In Orwell, Vermont, no one is allowed to drive a car while "wearing a floppy hat" or other head gear that would "scare a timid person".

No one wants to have an accident, but just in case you do, in Oklahoma there is a law which states, "The driver of any automobile involved in an accident resulting in death, shall immediately stop and give his name and address to the person struck.

A law in Bowman, North Dakota bans all citizens from "driving ugly automobiles". Ugly cars aren't allowed within three miles of the city limits. (You mean that NO MODERN upside down bathtub cars are allowed in Bowman? Ed)

Don't expect to be treated nice in Furnace, Kentucky if you fall asleep while driving. Local legislators passed a law banning drivers from napping while operating an automobile.

Ignorance of the law does not prevent the loosing lawer from collecting his fee.

(P.D. 7/26/97)

My First Car is a 1966 Galaxie 500 Fastback
by Lori Hoak

Dad's Boat!
by Ted McMurray

Thank you for the opportunity to join with a club of people who understand the grace and beauty of the Galaxie automobile.
My automobile is a 1964 Galaxie 2 door XL. It is powered by a 525 Cubic Inch Lima motor, a C6 Lenco Transmission, to a 373, 9 in posi Ford rearend. It has a Powerdyne Superchager, Predator carburator and for overkill it carries a single stage 250 H.P. ported N.O.S. kit.
I purchased the car about 10 years ago in Alabama, and it has been a thorn in the side of my two boys who are Chevy guys. My boys refer to my Galaxie as DAD'S BOAT. I throw them a life jacket, and tell them that my wake will swamp them on the way by. So far they keep the vest handy and don't want to find out if I can back up my words.
Here is the picture you asked for, but the car now sports a R code FX hood. I'm a master mechanic and would be glad to help anyone in the club if I can. Again thank you...
Ted McMurray

(Ed...Ted will be sending us some new pictures in the spring. Look for them here!)

{P.D. 2/8/97}

In Memory of...
by Don & Lori Wylie

She sat in a garage for fifteen years then was pushed out into a driveway for five more. When we found her in the driveway of a local subdivision, she looked pretty pitiful, probably due to the mean Michigan winters we have. Sadly, the owner just wanted to get her out of his way and we made a deal with him to bring her home with us. What the previous owner hadn't realized was that she still had a lot going for her even though her frame was rusted beyond repair. With respect and care, we took her apart, piece by piece but took time to reminisce about the good times she must of had.

Working on that '67
by Ken Cenicola

Dear Members,

It's been a long time since I've written but I've got a few things I'd like to share and a few open questions I'd like to ask. After living my first 25 years of my life in New Jersey, I got a job in Metro Detroit as an engineer calling on Chrysler and Jeep. This meant picking up all my life-long belongings and making the move to Michigan. Believe it or not I was able to cram every single Item I own into my '67 Ford Galaxie 2 Door Hardtop and drive 650 miles to the Motor City. The best thing about moving here was that my new job offered me a few extra bucks, just enough to finance a new vehicle and take the old Galaxie off the road as an every-day driver. Since last May, I've taken everything off and out of the car to fix it up right. Now there are bumpers and seats and trim pieces all over my dining room. I've only got an apartment so the living room doubles as the garage...good thing I'm single or I'd never get away with this.

This summer I repaired the rusted floor panel on the driver side and I came across a fantastic product. It's called Miracle Paint and it's available from Auto Krafters. It's very expensive and probably more toxic than uranium but it's an absolute must if restoring a car. Forget trying to get it out of a paintbrush or off your hands or off whatever surface you decide to paint. It turns rusty metal to a ceramic-like surface and the rust doesn't come back. Try it.

I also wanted to thank Adrian Clements, member #901, for providing me with a whole bunch of literature on 1967 rear differentials. I was looking to replace the 8.5" rear that I have with a 9" but had no idea what I.D. code I needed to look for. Adrian sent me all kinds of interesting stuff that enabled me to successfully procure a complete 9" rear end. The guy who actually found the unit for me was Mike Spisak. He runs a custom car service out of Pittsburgh. He'll help you locate used parts or hook you up with brand new custom parts for cars and trucks. He found the complete rear end for me in a couple days and gave me a great price. He even drove all the way to Akron Ohio to meet me half-way and save me the shipping cost. You can write him at Mike's Custom Corner, 326 Princeton Drive, Pittsburgh, PA 15235 or call him at 412-823-6801 or email him at You can also check out his Web Site on the Internet at Mike's Custom Corner.

Does anyone know if the distance from the axle to the differential yoke on an 8.5" rear is the same as the 9"? Or will I need a shorter or longer driveshaft when I install the unit? Also, does anyone know where I can get new die cast "FORD" trunk letters for my '67? I've looked everywhere. Has anyone ever installed headers on a Full-size Ford with a 289 and an automatic transmission? If so, where did you find them? I can't find anything to fit.

That's about it for now. If anyone can answer my questions please contact me either by phone or mail. 810-373-8963, 2885 Olden Oak Lane, Apt 102, Auburn Hills MI, 48326. or E:mail me. Thanks!

Yours in Ford,
Ken Cenicola

Rescued from a Horse Pasture
by Richard Martin, member #245

My car has an interesting story behind it (as probably most cars do.) I orignally bought the car in December of 1966 when I was a college student at Ohio State University in Columbus. Although the car was nearly 3 years old at the time (Dec. 1963 build date), it was like new with only 19,000 miles on it. I drove the car back and forth to college for three years. In the summer of 1969, I bought my parents 1965 LTD and sold the covertible.

End of story? Not really. I always regretted selling that car. I would often tell my wife what a great car that 64 Ford convertible was and if I could ever find one like it I would buy one. She would always say that would be ok, only if it cost less than $100.00.

Well, in late 1975, I was driving down a country road about 30 miles from home and I saw a red Ford covertible sitting in the weeds behind a barn in a horse pasture. I drove in the yard and inquired about the car. The owner said it was his son's and that the engine was blown, the car was quite rusty and the neighborhood kids had been using it for target practice. I asked if I might look at the car and to my shock I found this red convertible to be the SAME CAR I owned the decade before. It still had my fraternity decal in the window, my college parking stickers and the telltale dent in the taillight rim where I had backed into a fraternity brother's car in the parking lot. But the car was in terrible shape. The windshield had been shot out and there were bullet holes in the fender and trunk. The quarter panels were rusted through, the engine was gone, and someone had cut a hole in the floor for a 3 speed, and there was 4 incehes of water in the rear floor wells. Never the less it was MY CAR and I had to have it back. After a quick conversation with the owner,we agreed on $50.00 (probably $35.00 more than it was worth at the time but still $50.00 under my wife's requirement) and I bought the car. I later towed it to my parents barn where it sat under cover for about 15 more years.

During that 15 years I had great hopes of restoring the car but I didn't have the time, talent, or the money. I did buy a parts car for an engine and transmission but the car was a much bigger project than I had time for with a young family to raise.

Finally, in 1990, I contacted George Becker at Becker Automotive in Wauseon, Ohio. He took one look at the car and told me I would have much more in it than I would ever get out of it. He said he could find a similar car much cheaper than he could restore this one. Yet, it was still MY CAR and I had rescued it from a horse pasture. It just wouldn't be right to junk it and buy a replacement. So we did a frame off restoration. Four years and megabucks later I have a car that looks and drives just like it did in 1966 when I first bought it.

My car has a 289 engine just like it originally did with cruise-o-matic transmission. It is a great runner and our family enjoys cruising in the summer months. And when my wife reminds me how much I spent on restoration, I simply remind her that the $50.00 I spent for the car was only half of what she said I could spend!

I look forward to getting back into the Galaxie Club and receiving the newsletters again. Keep up the good work. View pictures of Richards car here...

Richard Martin

A Galaxie Story
by James A Scrivens, member #1665

I am a 35 year old restaurant manager who is fortunate enough to live close enough to the New Hampshire International Speedway to hear the throaty whine of Nascar and Busch North engines clearly. I am happily divorced, work too much and get paid too little.

My first car was a 1969 Galaxie Convertible. It was in rough shape because of the damage done from the huge quantities of road salt used to keep our roads clear in the winter. I was driving down the road with it one day and decided to put the roof down. Unfortunately nobody had told me that this was an unwise thing to do at 55 miles per hour! Needless to say, the shambles that remained of the roof were never raised again. The sight of me driving through snowstorms with the top down in a big red ragtop are still mentioned after almost twenty years. This car went where many four wheel drives went, became airborn in cornfields, and arrived to pick up dates at many a worried parents home.

When the '69' gave up, I picked up a 1967 4 door hardtop that was perhaps the ugliest shade of green ever put on a car. It was from Florida so was rust free. Eventually the front end and the brakes went on it. I had no mechanical experience then, so I got rid of it.

Over the years I've picked up quite a bit of auto repair skills. While reading the paper a couple of years ago, I noticed an ad for a 1967 Galaxie 2 Door Fastback. I went to look at it and found a Wimbleton White 390 2v with a C6 tranny and it had only 81,000 miles on the speedo. The car was rust free and from Colorado. The woman selling it had owned it since 1975, and had driven it from Colorado to New Hampshire with her children in 1993. I have lovingly restored the interior to firethorn red, detailed the engine bay with pounds of chrome, replaced every wire and hose, and added enough performance parts to make this car a 400 horsepower nightmare. I am working on the body now and am going to keep it painted Wimbleton White, but I'm adding 2 blue stripes to it (as in 67 GT 350), a hood scoop, and a rear wing from a '71' Olds 442. The rear end is lifted and I'm turning fat tires on 4 Cragar SS rims.

In closing I'd like to comment on the state of affairs concerning "clunker laws." If a person is unhappy with pending legislation, they must let their feeling be known to the appropriate legislators, this is what America is all about. The motton on the license plate of my '67' sums up how we here in New Hampshire feel about governmental interference..."LIVE FREE or DIE"

It's MY Car, I Just Let my Dad Drive It!
by Geoff Nielsen (9 years old)

When I was three years old, my father took me to Richmond Virginia to look at a 1964 Ford Thunderbird that he was thinking about buying. Next to it sat a GALAXIE 500 convertible that was a real fixer upper. My dad said, "Look Geoff, this one is yours, and the Thunderbird is mine." He was just joking but I didn't know that. The man wanted too much money for the T'Bird so we left. I didn't like that and started to cry. I told my father he had left my car.

The next weekend we went back and my dad bought the car for $900.00. Now the fun began. For four years we worked on it and sometimes I got to help. My dad says that the original 289 was rebuilt with all new 'go fast' parts. Ported, bored, decked, 351 valves, reworked combustion chambers, a four barrel, dual exhausts, electronic ignition, mild cam, and a rebuilt tranny. (I'm not sure what some of this stuff is, my dad just told me to put it in the article.) Oh, dad says there have been some minor body mods too, dress up goodies, etc..

Now we go to car shows and cruises and they are lots of fun. Sometimes we get trophies. My mom says that all hot rods need names. I call my '64 GALAXIE 'La Bamba' because mom thinks it's a bomb. Hope to see you all soon. I'm the kid with the 'older kid' driving him around. I hope he takes good care of my car until I'm 18.

First Impressions
by Bruce Dodds

Growing up in New Jersey in the Early 60's was hard for Ford loving car nuts. Almost like being from another planet. "Hot Rod" & "Car Craft"kept us informed about what was happening in the "Real World of California."

Sure there were loads of 55 and up Chevys, but older cars and Fords were rare.

Fortunately in the summer of 1965 family matters made a trip to California possible. I couldn't wait! After 3 straight days of driving we were just crossing into California when at a rest area, I spotted my first "California" car. A black 427 1963½ Galaxie 500/XL fastback, and a 1928 Model A pickup, both with nice tires and wheels. The Galaxie sounded soooo good!!

That memory has stayed with me all these years & now I have a black on black 1963 ½ R code of my own!

Rum Runner
by Mark Reynolds

In 1963 Ford started a new era in high-performance transportation.

The popular Galaxie was redesigned with new sheet metal and a rather interesting engine. The venerable and legendary 427. That's right, Four Hundred Twenty Seven cubic inches of raw power!! The new FE big block was rated at 425 horsepower and had 480 foot pounds of torque! And two huge four barrel carbs.

Drag racing fraternities and NASCAR boys were drawn to it like a bear to honey and so was a less talked about group of individuals.

This group didn't really look for their names in record books and they didn't place decals on their fenders either. These boys were just in the transportation business. Point A to point B AS FAST AS POSSIBLE. And no, they weren't part of the pony express, and no they did not work for the Post Office. They get the slowest vehicles they can find. Thus "snail" mail..

One of the features that these boys liked about the Galaxie was the huge trunk. Lots of cubic feet allowed for lots of room for their "product". Large loads of jugs and bottles filled with this product from Tennessee's illegal stills hidden deep in the woods. A legend was born.

This particular 1963 Ford Galaxie two door sedan (post) was built in February 1963 on the 20th day of that month in the Ford Atlanta factory. It then went from the showroom to a life of crime. Big crime in the eyes of the Alcohol Tobacco and Firearms Treasury boys.

The dreaded Revenuers. Be it rum or whisky that the Big Galaxie hauled down the roads in the deep of night, the Feds were not happy. Of course you can only imagine why...

Moonshine production was illegal because the government wasn't getting to tax it! It was embarrassing to the Feds that they couldn't catch this denizen of the night, big maroon Ford Sedan that howled down the winding Tennessee backroads.

They were having problems catching up to it when all eight barrels of induction were stomped open. Sad huh?

And since the "rum runners" didn't announce their plans in the local trader, and since they would pull those 180's at the first thought of a roadblock, the ol' revenuers never stood a chance of catching it.

Left 'em eatin' dust...

Until January 1964. Stroke of badluck, the rum runners got boxed in on a narrow, steep mountain road. A Fed in the front, a Fed in the rear. (I guess you could call it a real pain in the rear!) Poor rum runners were fed to say.

Nowhere to go but over the edge.

Oh well, the good ol' boy decided it would be better to go to the pen then wreck a nice 63 R code. Noooo....I think other things were on his mind. After all he hadn't seen Hooper. It wasn't out yet!

So, he went for a stay at the Fed Hilton for a few years and the Galaxie went to a government warehouse for 16 years. It probably spent more time in storage than the runner did in the Fed Hilton.

Then in early 1980 the US Government decided to auction off decades worth of seized property. Not many of the crowd had much appreciation for a 427 Galaxie with 16,000 original miles. Or if they did , they didn't have much cash. It sold for a mere $1000.00, about what the air cleaner is worth today.

It ended up in the hands of one of our members, Alan Burnham. A close up reveals the engine has never been out of the car. The factory exhaust is original down to the locking tabs as are the radiator hoses and clamps.

Untouched...the find of a lifetime. Research verifies it as one of only 47 two door sedans build with the R code 427. Rare, rare indeed.

And with its life of crime over it still howls like a banshee when 8 barrels cut in. Congratulations, Alan, keep that 63 shining forever!

On September 18th 2003, Alan Burnham gave up the ownership of the Rum Runner to, Mark & Kathy Reynolds of Harrison Arkansas. It will now be shown and displayed as much as possible so that automotive enthusiasts can see it and enjoy it as much as possible. We will keep you posted!

Ford Galaxie Club of America
P.O. Box 429, Valley Springs, Arkansas 72682-0429


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