The third time is often the charm. After my two prior attempts were aborted for various reasons, this time I was finally able to engulf myself in the well of Ford Galaxie. As the laws of nature would dictate, with the two past events being within 120 miles of home, I was able to attend when the convention was nearly four times further away.
In all there were 80 Galaxie’s present. While I did not capture all of them, what I have assembled here is a healthy cross-section of the attendees. There was some rarely seen iron and equipment in attendance.
Speaking of rarely seen equipment, this was nirvana for those of us three-speed with overdrive geeks. Why, you ask? The 1960 Starliner seen above has one of these wonderful, under appreciated transmissions.
Black was a popular color among the attending cars, such as this 1965 model. I spoke to the owner and his accompanying cousin at length throughout the day. They were terrific people and both had a sharp sense of humor.
They also won the long distance award for having traveled 2,200 miles to attend. The owner lives in Vancouver, Washington, and his cousin lives in Portland, Oregon. Even when visiting Dixie, the influence of the Pacific Northwest cannot be escaped! This Galaxie was powered by a 289. They were headed back by way of New Orleans and Las Vegas.
The day after the show, I saw them an hour north in Tennessee, near the Shiloh National Military Park.
Since I’ve started with black cars, here’s another black 1960, this one a two-door hardtop. It was powered by a 352 cubic inch (5.8 liter) engine.
And this black 1960 in Fairlane trim. I really like the 1960 full-sized Ford and black is my favorite automotive color – this was a terrific pairing.
This particular ’60 two-door sedan is powered by a 4.6 liter V8 from a 1990s era Crown Victoria.
Enough black. This red 1962 has had a grand total of one owner since new. The owners purchased the car shortly after they were married in 1962 and they have restored it.
I love their choice of transmission. The overdrive actuator is one of the knobs to the right of the steering column. The car is motivated by the 292 cubic inch V8.
How about a darker red 1962? This convertible had a manual transmission, but it was a four-speed. I seem to remember there being a 390 under the hood.
Another red convertible was this 1965.
It, too, was a three-speed but did not have an overdrive.
The owner of the red ’65 was speaking at length with the owner of this black ’66 hardtop. There was a commonality.
That’s right, this black ’66 has a conventional three-speed hooked to its 289.
I also talked to the owner of this ’66. He has owned this car since 1974 and has driven it extensively in that time. As he said, if he owns a car with good tires and a good engine, he’s going to work it.
The wheel covers on these makes me cringe. When I was five, for some unknown reason I tried to get a hubcap off the wall of my grandfather’s shed, it being a duplicate of this one. It came crashing down and the metal clip that holds it onto the wheel sliced open the skin adjacent to my left eye. Thankfully I didn’t lose my eye and the advent of laugh lines has helped camouflage the scar.
Another person I spoke to was the owner of this ’63. While there is a palpable difference in the luster, the lower half of his Galaxie is the same paint code as mine. He had never seen another Galaxie with the same color paint, a color Ford called “Champagne”.
I was in awe of a perfect backseat in the same color combination as mine,
As well as a front seat that isn’t torn up and requires a seat cover – like mine.
Not surprisingly, the 1963 models are quite popular among the club members. I suppose it only makes sense as these are the epitome of attractive full-sized sedans from a more innocent time and, in my humble and biased opinion, they look infinitely better than that year’s competition from Chevrolet.
Don’t like a steel roof? There was this red convertible.
The colors found at the show were quite varied, such as this terrific blue.
Black remains popular such as this fastback that was rumored to have only 22,000 miles on the odometer, and
This two-door “box-top”.
White was also prevalent with the 1963 contingent, such as this 390 powered convertible and
This fender-skirted two-door on very narrow bias-ply tires. It was one of the most original appearing cars among the ’63s.
Just don’t let those fender skirts lure you into thinking this is some frumpy grocery getter as a 427 cubic inch (7.0 liter) V8 nestled under the hood.
Frumpy might be a better adjective for the sole sedan present from that model year.
That sedan is quite the contrast to another white ’63 that had this engine planted under the hood.
There were a number of such modified cars. While I usually don’t find modified cars as being my cup of tea, my opinion is rapidly softening toward some of them. This next one I found quite intriguing – perhaps due to the relative practicality of it.
This 1967 was found in a salvage yard. Not wanting to let the car go to waste, the owner set about making a number of modifications that enhanced both the drivability and efficiency of his Galaxie.
What did he do?
He installed the 32 valve 4.6 liter V8 from a Lincoln and mated it to the five-speed transmission from a 1998 Mustang. The back axle is from a Ford van, the master cylinder from an F-150, and the disc brakes are from both a van and Crown Victoria. I would love to take it for a spin.
Some have opined the future of the car hobby is not looking very rosy, given the seeming lack of interest from the younger generation. The owner of this Galaxie quickly sets that notion aside. The owner is in his 20s and finished the restoration of this 1964 within the last two years. In addition to restoring it, he has documented the cars entire history through its previous eleven owners.
He told me that during its life, the car has been shuffled among a family, stolen and recovered stripped of parts, ran hard, and kept going. A picture he had, taken in 1972, shows this car looking a bit frayed and with a canoe strapped to its roof.
This car is painted “Samoan Coral” and is powered by a 390 hooked to a four-speed. The owner has determined this limited color example is one of only twenty-two left in existence with this particular hue and the only one with a four-speed manual transmission. His passion for his car is contagious.
While the two-door hardtop was the best-selling Galaxie for 1964, there was still the two-door sedan as seen here.
The 1964 models are nice, but I have never found them as captivating as some of the other model years. However, the color on this one does give it a quiet air of sophistication.
When compared to a 1974 Galaxie, the differences in a decade are profound. As the owner of this ’74 told me, the Galaxie went from top-dog down to basic, low-trim transportation. The ’74 models were quite prone to rust but that has eluded this one completely.
Before I disclose what would ultimately be the center of the show, I must present this 1968 LTD. It was amazing as this is the original paint and this highly optioned 390 powered four-door hardtop was a delight to behold.
Whoever doesn’t like four-doors should reconsider. Packing an awesome sounding 428, this 1967 Custom would likely induce amnesia about such trivial matters as the number of access points into the cabin.
If you are keeping track, I haven’t shown any 1961 models. They were delightfully abundant, such as this two-door hardtop.
Wouldn’t you know it? It’s a three-speed with overdrive!
Ford made the Starliner for only two years, in 1960 and 1961. The 1961 Starliner was the most represented 1961 model present. I’m going to let the pictures speak for themselves.
I counted eight of these Sunliner’s in all. For me, there isn’t a bad line on them anywhere.
Since we started off with a black 1960, it only makes sense to go full-circle. For anyone who even admires Ford’s Galaxie, it was quite the show.