View Full Version : In need of professional help!

09-08-2009, 02:21 PM
I found this forum through "G" search yesterday. BTW- on first page of search engine. I was instantly impressed with the passion and knowledge each owner/author has for their Mark II. I really never had any opportunity to own one of these gems. However, I have chanced upon a '56 that is available for purchase. I'm hoping to make this car my first classic. I will be travelling to inspect the car within the week. I have read many articles on the Mark II, both on this forum and on the internet. This car (through pics) seems to be complete-rust free-dent free-nice interior,etc. It looks to be an excellent "driver" and would need little restoration. Would someone be so kind to share their thoughts on things to look for as I inspect this auto. Maybe, as if you were to purchase your first, or if fortunate enough, your second or third Mark. Things that are known problems?? Authentication helpers? Etc. With the wealth of knowledge that it seems is tied to this network, i'm hoping to be able to make a reasonable and fair offer to the current owner. Thanks in advance. R. Baker

Nick DeSpirito
09-08-2009, 02:59 PM
Mr. Baker,

My advice to you is to go see the car in person. Pictures do not depict an accurate description of condition. Second, (this should be first and foremost) before purchasing, I would get an education on the car. Read as much as you can about it so when you shop for one, you know what to look for.

Welcome to the forum!

Shelly Harris
09-08-2009, 03:40 PM
I think the most important item to check is the transmission. If it has to be rebuilt you have a major project as the engine and trans must come out of the car together, and that requires opening up the entire front end. All other mechanicals can be fixed or replaced, all it takes is money. The body, trim, bright work is all there to be inspected and there should be no guessing on its condition..... again all it takes is money to get it all looking good, but if something is missing it can be difficult to find a nice replacement. Personally I wouldn't consider a car that's not complete. Buy the nicest condition car you can find and don't expect it to be cheap. A nice condition "driver" without any problems should command $50K or more. Inspect and judge it as you would anyother used car.

Barry Wolk
09-08-2009, 05:36 PM
Good advice Shelly.

Keep in mind that the entire drive train is off-the-shelf Lincoln parts. The rest of the parts are unique, with the exception of the washer bottle.

I've heard of several problems with rusted frame members. Many of the car's vacuum chambers rust out. They are built into the frame, and that can be problematic.

Everything else can be rebuilt, or you can go the Mad Scientist route and make it stronger, faster and stop better, without ruining the outward appearance.

If that's what you're looking for, look for one of the Desert Classic cars upgraded with disc brakes and dual master cylinders and electric wipers, I believe.

Welcome to the insanity.

09-08-2009, 05:59 PM
Oh, dear GOD, listen to the above advice. The only car I have ever been happy with is this Mark II, because it was the only car I didn't buy sight-unseen, I drove it, it worked and it wasn't missing parts. Please don't settle for anything less.

I am (was) always the guy who thought he could by a car that "needed a little work" and save a ton of $. I never listened to advice. I paid, believe me.

Buy the BEST car you can POSSIBLY afford.

09-08-2009, 07:38 PM
Thanks again all. I will post details and pics of in-person inspection. Robby Baker

Chuck Lutz
09-09-2009, 12:38 AM
Robby, Great car and welcome to the forum. I joined a couple weeks ago and so glad I did. Great people and a great hobby.

Mad Scientist
09-09-2009, 03:42 PM
I agree with all of the above plus look for hidden rust.

Around the tire openings are the inner fender wells still welded to the out skin?
Check fenders around the headlights.
Check front fender around the two mounting bolts directly behind the tire and under the exhaust pipe.
Check directly in front of rear tire where three pieces of sheet metal come together.
Check sheet metal channel directly behind top of rear bumper. (reach up from under bumper.)
Check bottom of frame side rails and cross member under drivers seat. (tap with screwdriver to see if they are solid.)

09-09-2009, 03:51 PM
Of course you might want to be careful about the owner seeing you but if I'm checking for rust I take an ice pick(remember those) or a sharpened screwdriver and push into the suspect area. On the frame push hard. If it goes through it's rotten and needed finding and even if you create a slight dent it has to be fixed anyway. I'm repairing a 50 Monterey for a guy and if he'd done this he wouldn't have been stuck with this car.

09-09-2009, 04:38 PM
Exactly the info I need. Thanks soooo much guys.. Any help with authentication? I have read where the motor number is located behind the distributor. Also the badge on door jam containing codes for mfg. number, color codes, etc. Any other authentication areas? Name plate for original owner? Will be seeing car in person tomorrow. Robby

Barry Wolk
09-09-2009, 05:03 PM
I can tell you everything you need to know about your car from the info on the data plate.

I can tell you that most of the cars were the same. The only options were air conditioning and bumper guards. There were a few Ford exec cars with padded dash, visors and lap belts. There were some Dealer Special Order cars that had Mouton Carpeting. Leon Flagg's car has that. Some had special paint jobs, but that was about it. Everything else was standard.

If the plate on the hump is blank it was likely a dealer stock car. It may have belonged to somebody important, but that info's not on file if they didn't order the car. Also, the first 300 cars or so have no owner information as the cars belonged to Ford while they sat in showrooms as Introductory Units.

Make sure the car's all there and solid, or walk away from it.

You're actually better off buying a restored car. The seller never wins. Can I get an A-men!

09-09-2009, 06:03 PM
If the plate on the hump is blank it was likely a dealer stock car. It may have belonged to somebody important, but that info's not on file if they didn't order the car. Also, the first 300 cars or so have no owner information as the cars belonged to Ford while they sat in showrooms as Introductory Units.

Plate on the hump? As my friend Igor would say, "What Hump?":D

Where would I find this plate in my car?

09-09-2009, 08:50 PM
:DBarry is absolutely correct. When you get a car that's already had it's problems addressed, is complete, and is running and driving you are miles ahead of trying to take care of them after you get the car. The car I have has had only about 2000 miles put on it in the 22 years I've been around it and though it has less than 50,000 miles on it has a myriad of things it needs simply because its' been parked for so long. I've already got a ton of info off this site since I found it. Oh and AMEN Barry!

Barry Wolk
09-09-2009, 08:55 PM
My car was restored to museum standards, but not sorted out. It was frustrating, but fun, wrenching on a brand-new 50 year-old car.

09-09-2009, 10:19 PM
That would definitely be cool. Mines had one well done re-paint about 20 years ago and though parked is complete(even have 5 wheelcovers) and rust free. Carb is scheduled to land Friday and I can't wait to re-fire it and get started. I sure I'll enjoy bringing one back to life.

09-15-2009, 11:30 PM
SLK, I don't think anyone answered your question about the "hump" plate. It's a gold plate mounted on top the the transmission hump just forward of the heater, vent, a/c controls. It says "Continental" in script. Just below the script is imprinted the owners name. As already mentioned, many were blank.

09-16-2009, 04:10 PM
Thanks Howard.

My car had some renovation work in the 90's including new carpet. It's long gone if there had been anything ever there.

Don Henschel
09-19-2009, 03:01 PM
Bakerx Hows the windshield. I discovered from this forum that this part could be nasty to replace. A big A-men to Barry, as the seller never wins! At least the selling prices have gone up since a couple of years ago.