1963 Ford Falcon
Article by Larry Crain
Original and build photos by Roger Gaynor
Finished photos by Larry Crain
It is truly hard to believe that this awesome 1963 Ford Falcon was rescued from a chicken coop where it had lived in raw steel for 15 years! That’s right, Roger Gaynor of Owosso, Michigan took possession of this car in March of 2016 in a very rough form. So rough, in fact, that his friend Bruce Rathburn nicknamed it “The Potato” because of all the surface rust the car had. Yes, you read that sentence correctly, Roger’s Falcon project was completed in a little less than a year! This little Ford has come a very long way in a very short time, and it is just great seeing how it has been transformed into the four wheel work of art it is now.
This ultra clean Falcon sits on a custom frame that Roger built out of 2x3 square tubing, and then he added all the right components. The front clip is a Mustang II style IFS built to Roger’s specifications by Checkered Racing. The rear suspension is a combination of Chassis Engineering triangulated 4 bar that is set up with a NASCAR-styled Ford 9-inch equipped with Trac Loc and 3:70 gears. Both the front and rear suspension are set up with the RidePro system from Ridetech that gives Roger the options of how he wants the car to sit for show or driving. Stopping power for the car was going to be a concern because of the horsepower to weight ratio, so Roger installed a complete Wilwood brake system. Another wow factor that Roger thought through is the tire and wheel combination on this car. The retro look is courtesy of Heritage wheels from US Mags, 20x17 on the rear mounted with BF Goodrich 305/40R20 and the fronts are 17 inch wheels mounted with 225/35R17 BF Goodrich rubber.
Roger gave this Falcon a hell of a heart in the form of a 430 horse powered Ford 5.0 Coyote motor backed up to a factory 6 speed AOD transmission. The bad ass Coyote has been detailed to the max and dressed out with carbon fiber by Clint Hydro Dip along with other small touches like the mesh inserts. This motor had to look like a killer because of the fact that it protrudes slightly through the custom hood cut out. The Coyote motor lets everyone know it’s up and running thanks to a Dave’s Muffler & Exhaust custom built three inch aluminized system that features Spin Tech performance mufflers.
The body modifications on this Falcon are numerous but very subtle, and Roger put a lot of thought into them all. Roger removed the complete floor pan along with the firewall, and this was just the beginning of the metal work that was to included shaving and channeling of the body. The car received new rear quarters, wheel tubs, and Roger even took the time to smooth and tuck the bumpers close into the body for a much sleeker look. The owner-designed hood is unique in looks with the custom cut out and the one-off design hood hinges that allows the hood to tilt forward to really show off the motor compartment. The devil is in the details, and Roger could check this off his list with small touches like the custom Kindigit Design exterior door handles. Roger’s good friend Bruce Rathbun came on board to help out with the body work prior to the car heading over to Dedic’s Diamond Auto Body for painting. Bob Dedic sprayed the car Vivid Red using the PPG base coat clear coat system. When the painted body came back to Roger’s shop, Bruce put his buffing and detailing expertise to work by giving the car its award winning finish.
Before the interior was to be done, Roger had help in many forms in getting the Coyote powered Falcon to run. Power By The Hour built a custom wiring harness along with the ECM, then friends Tim Spencer and Steve Groll helped out with wiring in all of the electronics that included the Intellitronix gauges. The custom interior features more of Roger’s metal skills, a dash that flows beautifully into the upper sections of the doors and a console that is home for the Ford Mustang shifter and Ridetech controls. A polished Ididit tilt column topped off with a Grant leather wrapped steering wheel is just the beginning of the show stopping interior done by Bob & Kathy Fender of Fender Designs. The Fender’s did an outstanding job of covering the Procar bucket seats, Fender’s custom built back seat and interior panels in Tobacco colored leather.
Roger drove his Falcon into the Cobo Center in Detroit Michigan for the Detroit AutoRama in February 2017 and drove out with Best In Class Award, a Ford Performance Best Ford in a Ford Award and an Outstanding Interior Award. Roger was recently part of the Scottie D’s Dirty Dozen at the 2017 Spring Pigeon Forge Rod Run where he picked up a Top 25 Award and a huge Promoter’s Pick Trophy! Not a bad way to start off the year when you consider that over a year ago it was a Falcon in a chicken coop covered with poop. Thanks to Roger’s over 35 years of building hot rods, this project turned out just awesome and the plus side is he said it was the most fun build he had ever tackled.
Shops and manufacturers used in the building of this car.