In Aus as in NZ your best bet is a HR holden front end. You can then fit HQ-WB stubs and the disc brakes, a Commodore rack and pinion will need to be shortened slightly (37mm from memory) as the HK-T steering box will interfere with the driver side exhaust and make changing plugs murder - I had a 36 Sloper with the steering box setup that I had bought from a friend so I can speak from experience here. Alternatively the Mitsubishi L300 would fit and has the Ford bolt pattern discs, if you desire you can convert them to Holden using Holden stub axles but here you will need to modify the suspension towers to retain your suspension geometry - Not a job for a Goldfish! Absolute easiest rear end is a 9 inch on parallel springs; newer pickups are good donors for these. Regarding the wood in the bodies - in this hemisphere wood was used for a longer period than the US. If it is in near perfect condition I would retain it as it is quite a difficult operation to replace it although taking your time it is not impossible, use furniture tubing as it is 1.2 to 1.6mm thick and you will save considerable weight, when you come to a complex area make a cardboard pattern and use 1mm cold rolled mild steel sheet. My advice - learn to MIG weld - you will never regret it!! With a smallblock the chassis will only need a 3mm X 37mm round tubing X member with gusset plates onto the side of the top hat section chassis rails but a biggie will need more. last bit of advice, join a club and find some more examples of the breed, taking note of how the modifications have been done. Most important dont let your mates get to you when it doesn't happen overnight - keep at it and you and the missus will be cruisin before you know it.