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Phillfam99 10-29-2005 10:28 AM

56 Ford F100 to a S10 Chassis?
They have the same wheelbase. But can it be done? If so, does anyone have any tips and CAUTIONS for me? I would appreciate any suggestions guys. Thanks, Gary :cool:

shine 10-29-2005 12:34 PM

we;re about to put a 46 ford tudor on an s10. not sure if it can help. it's mostly building new mounting pads. block it up on blocks of wood and build to the frame.

MARTINSR 10-29-2005 02:24 PM

I'm sorry guys, frame swaps have always been a looser. Without a LOT of modifications they are usually a hacked, afterbirth mess. They are not an easy way out, on the contrary they require much more work than simply modifying the original frame. Finding a good original frame is easier than modifying another.

It is like doing an engine swap, the actual mounting of the engine is just the START of the modifications. The exhaust, fuel lines, rad, fan, throttle, clearance issues with crossmembers, drag link, tie rod, starter, distributor etc. is where the real work is.

With a frame it is that and hundreds of others!

For goodness sakes modify the original frame to your liking. 56 Ford F-100 huh? My brother just got our dads 55 on the road after a rebuild. He bought another frame so he could do it without tearing the truck down. He got a kit for the front using Chrysler Volare or something parts. He now agrees that he should have went with one that used GM parts but that is besides the point. Anyway, he put a later rear axle using some soft ride springs that perfectly replaced the originals. The front and rear swaps were pretty easy, provided a nice looking chassis. This truck rides like a car, it stops with disc brakes, power steering, it drives REAL nice.

If you think that these kits are costly, you havn't rebuilt that worn out S-10 chassis yet! It all costs money. If you don't want to spend money, leave it alone. Or just leave the S-10 together and drive that!

Honestly, frame swaps are LOOSERS.


JR66Ford 10-30-2005 07:47 PM

I know each of us are intitled to their own opinion, but I have to disagree on frame swaps being a looser way out. I myself am putting a '66 F100 on a '97 Crown Vic frame. Yes it will be lots of work, but it'll do so much more than modifying the stock frame. I am one of those people that likes it low. In fact, I want to drag the rockers on the ground. This particular frame I chose is almost half the size of the stock truck frame. Sooo,....without channeling my truck over the stock frame and loosing headroom, I use the car's smaller frame and get the same effect. Plus, I'm poor. I can't afford to drop $1500 on a front IFS, and $xxxx.xx on the rear 4 link. My swap will get me the desired ride height and quality of a stock crown vic, late model engine and drivetrain, and I picked this up for $600. So, it takes me a little more effort and a little longer, but it's a trade off I'm willing to do.

So, it alls comes down to what you want to spend your time and money on. If you have the time and the donor chassis, why not. The S-10 has been around from 1982-2004. Parts really aren't that expensive, plus everyone has them. Try walking into your local parts store and getting a bushing set for you '56 F100 without having to get them ordered, not likely. Good luck with your decision.

redlightning 10-30-2005 07:53 PM
This is from a ford truck site.

MARTINSR 10-30-2005 08:42 PM

Junior sixty six, let me make this clarification, I never said that the person who does a frame swap was a "looser". That is what it sounds like in your response "looser way out". I in no way meant that (though I can be jerk enough to say something like that, I didn't this time. :) ) I said and meant that it was a "looser" job as in you "can't make time", "can't make money" looser.

Sure, I can see that for certain guys it may be the "bestest" way to go. I just see it as a "money saver" or "easy way out" for a lot of guys and that isn't usually the case. You don't need to spend $1,500 on a front end, a $200.00 frame clip and a pair of new leaf springs will do the job.

Most guys will check the wheel base and think they have it. There is MUCH, MUCH more than that. A 56 F-100 for instance has a strangely large front overhang. The motor needs to be much further forward than a lot of cars, that could throw you off. I have seen a number of frame swaps, they usually look like a frame swap. The biggest compliment someone can give you is "that looked easy". Most frame swaps looked hard, because they are "tacky". I am sure with the time you could do a real nice swap and make for a super nice ride. That just isn't usually the case.


baddbob 10-31-2005 05:42 AM

Just a thought, the chevy two wheel drive trucks from 73-87 have a bolt in front suspension crossmemeber that can usually be easily adapted to work on other truck frames. Most all of these have disc brakes and easily adaptable power steering and the real plus is the aftermarket offers a wide cariety of drop spindles and springs as well as sway bars for this suspension. You don't always need to spend big bucks for a donor suspension. Unbolt the whole assembly off of a parts truck and roll it in for fitting. Usually the frame widths are within a few inches and the only mods needed are where it attaches. Rearend swaps are easy usually only needing the perches relocated and a trip to the wrecking yard to find the proper length driveshaft or have one made. I seen a guy spend over a year building a 50 Merc on an 85 Olds cutlass frame and drivetrain only to be very displeased with the final product. Think it through before you start cutting and fabricating- I think this is what Brian was trying to point out. Bob

shine 10-31-2005 06:03 AM

the s10 became popular for early truck because of it's narrow track. plenty of tire clearance , no rack & pinion and most rearends have od gears [ not the strongest by far]. under early chevy trucks it works great. a frame swap can be easy or a disaster as can a clip. under cars it's another story. a camaro clip works well under fords but is a tad wide.

JR66Ford 10-31-2005 06:42 AM

Oops Brian. Didn't mean for it to come back out that way. Email tends to hide inflections and sarcasm. I agree with you though, if I had the money to accomplish what I want the 'right' way, I would. It would be lots easier to do a clip up front and leafs in the rear. But as we all say, to each their own.

Oh, it's not Junior either. It's J R, as in Jason Russell

MARTINSR 10-31-2005 08:28 AM

No problem Jason, wasn't a big deal, I just wanted to clarify. :)


Pops40Ford 03-23-2006 11:14 AM

40 Ford Truck w/ 90 S10 Truck Chassis
I'm having a problem with my rack and pinion conversion. Trying to find a kit out there. Can anyone help me?

MARTINSR 03-23-2006 06:39 PM

You need to start a new thread to get all the responses you may need. Also, start a thread over in the suspension forum would be a better idea. :)


Packard V8 02-22-2008 07:43 PM

frame swaps are difficult
Hi, Jason,

Show us your truck when you finish. Yours may disprove the rule. However, most don't have your time or talent. We've seen way too many which ended up ruining two vehicles to no good effect.

thnx, jack vines

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