View Full Version : 1959 Edsel Villager

05-31-2014, 03:06 AM
Bought Edsel May 29th. Will be trucked here from out of state in next week or two.

Originally had 332 with stick shift. Now has 292 2V with 3 speed Cruise-O-Matic. Is first I recall seeing Y-block with Cruise-O-Matic behind it. Test drove and shifts fine. Standard steering and brakes. Brakes are new.

Tires are new 8.50x14 bias ply. Likely switch to radials.

Paint, upholstery, glass are good.

Needs fix ups here-n-there typical of older cars. Though not extensive rebuild like the 59 Lincoln.

05-31-2014, 03:20 AM
VERY cool, Bill. Yes, Ford was putting Cruise-O-Matics behind Y-Blocks in the '59 Fairlane and Galaxie lines. Some COMs were two-speed transmissions. Many of those cars came with Mileage Maker Six engines.

I believe your Villager came out of Louisville ***'y Plt. That car was exactly what the 'old Man' wanted in every family's driveway. It's a pretty car and a great find.

BTW, if you plan on driving this car, it has Squarebird front spindles. You can do power front disk brakes, (like I did on the Galaxie). - Dave

06-03-2014, 06:59 AM
Thank you. Yes, I thought it was cool in an Edsel wagon kinda way. Was loaded on transport truck June 2nd. Likely arrive the 5th.

Left rear door don't lock and left blinkers don't work. Are some first things to get fixed.
Switch from single to dual exhaust too. 2.25 or 2.5 inch pipes.
Anyone know what years interior day/night mirror fits ?

Picture of data plate is attached.

Dan Leavens
06-03-2014, 06:21 PM
Bill that is way too cool and of course a must for a " road trip " with the family:)

06-04-2014, 03:33 AM
Bill, here is the breakdown of your VIN # and Data Plate.


Here is another link. The breakdown of the VIN# shown has a W shown for the motor. W = Motor (361 cid V8 w/ 4 bbl carb.)
But your VIN # starts with the letter B, and that means it had a V8 332 CID 2V .


One of these links says the letter T indicates it is a 6 Passenger Station Wagon, but the other one says that the 6 Passenger Station Wagon would be a 71E and a 71E is a 9 Passenger Station Wagon (if I got that right!) Yours is a 71F. There is a mix up on a couple of sites as to which is a 71E and a 71F. Here is a link that says the opposite and a website you might be able to put to good use. This site says the 71F (VIN Code T) is a 6 Passenger and the 71E (VIN Code V is the 9 Passenger. Your VIN Code is a T and your Body Style is a 71F (from what it appears to me), so yours is not a 9 Passenger, but a 6 Passenger Station Wagon, according to this website.


06-04-2014, 11:59 PM
Thanks, and yes it is a 6 passenger.
The 292 has a 332 air cleaner housing. Indicative of it being original one planted on top of the swapped in 292.
Interior was gutted and painted red everywhere except for one oops. Lip metal that glove box screws into shows green. Confirming factory green paint. Rear inset area where backup lights are is red. Factory red & white two tones painted it white. Took me a bit of Edsel picture gazing to pick up on that. Actually I prefer it red (my tastes).

Arrived today. Drove home. Those bias tires are horrible. Have their own built in bumps. Goes to shop Thursday to start fixes and mods. Will get into doors to replace shot window channels and fix lock problems. While inside of doors are accessible, front doors get remote control locks.

06-30-2014, 08:35 PM
Gas tank has top side rust. Needs to be replaced.
After lots of phone call bouncing around, located a new tank.
Just aint demand for 59 wagon tanks.
Located weather strip for doors. Wagon lower & upper tailgate kits can't be found. Will try various generic weather strip pieces. Maybe 60s-70s wagons will work for part of stripping.
With carb rebuilt and Pertronics ignition, 292 runs fine.
Got door locks fixed. New tires (215/75/14) arrived.
Currently working on floor rust thru spots. Not extensive as on Lincoln.
BTW - know a source for parking light lens?

06-30-2014, 08:50 PM
Bill, I see you are giving the old girl a good work over. Check the Advertisements Forum for some of the companies that specialize in stocking and selling old OEM, NOS, or used parts. You might find something there.

06-30-2014, 10:21 PM
...BTW - know a source for parking light lens?
macsautoparts.com has amber lenses also try

07-01-2014, 11:37 AM
The new (at that time) Cruise-o-matic was only offered with the 332cid 2-brl & 352cid 4-brl engine options. The older, common 2-spd Ford-o-matic was the "base" automatic used for the 6-cyl & Y-block V-8's in 1958-60 Ford cars/wagons...

-Jon in TX.

07-01-2014, 04:39 PM
Yes, I agree. Edsel offered 223 I6, 332 V8, 361 V8 in wagons. To my surprise 292 V8 was available in sedans. Not in wagons.
So,,, 292 & Cruise-O-Matic got swapped in some years back.
All runs and shifts fine. Sticking with it.
Tab on diff says "2.91". Seems correct from feel of driving Villager.

07-05-2014, 04:59 PM
Congrats on the new owner!

We had one today at our town's first Independence Day car show. The first thing I thought of was the post on Squarebirds.
http://i261.photobucket.com/albums/ii57/dukejohnson99/TBird/ec4e050b-b821-49fe-9ea6-207dbc873334_zps90bfa5c1.jpg (http://s261.photobucket.com/user/dukejohnson99/media/TBird/ec4e050b-b821-49fe-9ea6-207dbc873334_zps90bfa5c1.jpg.html)
http://i261.photobucket.com/albums/ii57/dukejohnson99/TBird/DSC_0014_zps347476b2.jpg (http://s261.photobucket.com/user/dukejohnson99/media/TBird/DSC_0014_zps347476b2.jpg.html)
http://i261.photobucket.com/albums/ii57/dukejohnson99/TBird/DSC_0015_zpsca109d0d.jpg (http://s261.photobucket.com/user/dukejohnson99/media/TBird/DSC_0015_zpsca109d0d.jpg.html)
It was behind us a few cars in the parade, too

07-12-2014, 03:19 AM
Thanks all for the info.
Yellow/white with green interior and picnic gear really looks the time capsule part. Love it !
Got a "new" gas tank. Have Por 15 treatments to seal it up good and resistant to current gasoline. Need to do that next.
Rusted spare tire well is repaired. Few other small rust spots under body are repaired. Having lost a 289 & 351W to broke timing gears, have a new 292 set to install. Have to check condition. If is tight and well, can return chain/gear set.
After that its back to electric shop.

07-12-2014, 04:30 AM
During the 70's all the auto manufacturers thought delrin nylon was the cat's @$$ because it reduced chain noise. My father lost his Pontiac engine due to a broken cam gear. The 1973 390 I rebuilt had 1/3 of the nylon teeth missing on the OEM gear. There are thousands of horror stories.

Sometimes the big 3 make moves in the wrong direction, causing problems in areas where things worked just fine. GM is going through this with key switches. Jap cars wouldn't shut off, etc. They all quickly revert to tried and proven methods from the passed 100 years of building cars.

If you have a 'PLASTIC' timing gear, change it ASAP.

When you do your timing chain on your Y-block, please do the oil modifications as well. Remember, Y-block crank/cam timing is not like other Ford engines. Y-blocks put 12 pins between the timing marks (see picture #12 (http://home.comcast.net/~simplyconnected/59Ford/EngineParts/292TimingSet/) and reference your Shop Manual). They do not align the timing marks with a straight edge.

I hope you use a true roller chain set for your Y. Double row rollers last three times longer than conventional chains. (I advance my cam by four degrees for better low end torque which gives better cruising around town, better gas mileage and more torque at the light.) - Dave

08-01-2014, 12:49 AM
Drove Villager today from shop to shop.
Short drive but nice. Look forward to regular driving.
Got underbody rust spots repaired. Next is new gas tank, electrical, etc....
After that is tires and suspension shop.

09-22-2014, 04:41 AM
Got Villager out of shop 9/19. Took attached pictures 9/20.

Though much left to do, was cruise worthy for first time since May 2014 purchase.

What was done:

> Floor rust spots repaired

> Rebuild carburetor

> New --- gas tank, radiator, timing set, speedo cable, headlight switch, headlights, window channel all doors, front door locks, weather stripping on doors and lower tail gate, brakes, tires, gas pedal

> Added --- remote locks on front doors

Did 50ish miles of in town, road, freeway cruising to let unknown issues surface.

> Front brakes pull to right. Got line on front disc conversion anyway.

> During last 1-2 feet of driving for the day while parking at home, a gasket/seal/whatever in transmission let go dumping ~2 quarts ATF on driveway. Villager gets tow truck ride to tranny shop this week.


10-08-2014, 05:30 PM
Bill, since I'm just down the road from you, what are the chances that one of these days you'll let me swing by and see your stable? You've got such an interesting collection. :)

10-22-2014, 02:47 AM
Ickaber - we otta link up. Will send PM.

Latest is replacement of 2" single exhaust with dual 2.25", "H" pipe, Magnaflow mufflers, chrome turn down tips under bumper.
Added 360deg open air filter housing. Obviously runs better after air filter change. Surprisingly so.......

12-06-2014, 11:36 PM
59 Villager is in shop getting suspension and brakes rebuilt.
Striving to get as much done as possible on varoius cars before 2015 cruising season is here.

01-12-2015, 10:33 PM
Now with suspension rebuilt, after market 1.125" sway bar and new radial tires, Villager has respectable cornering.
Must be better than when new.