We have a lot of customers who call wanting to know if they can get a N.O.S. ford f-100 front bed panel for a 1964-66 Ford F-100 pickup. As usual, to make sure you get the right part that you need and that we know what to send you, we have to ask a few questions. You'd be amazed at the amount of people who aren't sure what the have. For the 1964,1965,and 1966 Ford F-100 and F-250 the bed options were either a LONG or SHORT bed obviously, but also you'd either have a STEP SIDE ( known as a Flare Side), or a STYLE SIDE (sometimes referred to as a WIDE bed, or a FLEET SIDE).
Just to clear things up, A STEP SIDE has smooth inner side panel, and big bulky fenders on the outside that cover the tires. The STYLE SIDE has smooth outer bed sides with body lines, but has INNER side panels that have what is called a WHEEL TUB spot welded to them that covers the tires.
With that information out of the way, the answer to the ORIGINAL question asked is....NO! There may be a few New Old Stock front panels somewhere in the U. S.,but I for one donlt know where they would be. But... YES, we do sell an American made Reproduction that is made out of the original gauge steel, and has all the original features. You can purchase a FRONT PANEL by itself, or with a FRONT BED SILL, with a $40.00 saving when purchased together.
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HONEST TRUTH, I just took an order for one no more than 25 minutes ago from a customer in Texas, and when I mentioned the FRONT SILL, he asked, what's a front sill, and do I really need one? Some people do, and some don't. If you think you don't and find out later you do, then you have to pay that additional $40.00 plus $42-$57 dollars for shipping depending on where you are ordering from. I'll fill you in on this much, if the front of your corrugated floor is rotted out, you probably do need one, because that's exactly where it's at. Right under that part of the floor. You need to check that part really well. It's kinda hard to check, because it has about 28-35 spot welds where the floor welds to it, and it has more than that where the bottom lip of the Carolina Classics Ford F-100 Truck, Style Side Front Bed Panel is spot welded to it. That's one of those spots on FORD F-100's that collects dirt and mud and once it's in there it has no way to get out and lays there for years eating up the floor, the front bed sill, and the front bed panel. It's fair to say that MOST people do need it, but don't take my word for it, check it.
We even get asked what's the benefit of buying a NEW one, to repairing my old one. I'm sure you have ALL heard that (Time is money). And I understand that everyone doesn't have the money to buy a NEW one, but calculate how much time you'll have in your old one, that is IF you have the know how, and tools of the trade to be able to do it yourself. If NOT, and you are going to have the guy who's painting you truck to do it, just remember, even though he may be able to do it a little quicker and better than you could, but HIS time is money too.I have a lot of customers tell me how much they have in their finished truck that a restoration shop built for them. These numbers run from $ 80,000 to $221,000, and a very good part of that is for the Shop's labor charge......But I'm also aware that a man has to do what he can afford to do, so let's just get on to the removal of FRONT BED PANEL and the FRONT SILL.
Getting the bed off the frame, and a place to store it INSIDE while all this work is going to be done is very helpful. Then, take some fairly coarse sandpaper and start lightly sanding in the area where the spot welds are and you'll soon see how well it is to see them. Once you find them all (or THINK you've found them all) take a center punch, and punch a recess as close to the center as you can on each one. Then get a drill bit (I usually use a 3/16" bit) just to make the first hole kind of quick in all of them, then I'll come back with a 3/8" bit to get the most of the spot weld out. Then you can start separating some of the welded joint, and disassemble most of what you want to repair or replace. For this task you may also need a thin chisel to break apart what the drill bit didn't get. Of course they make a bit specifically for drilling out spot welds, and it may be worth the money , but honestly I've never personally used one myself.
Once the front bed panel has been separated from the lower front cross member, my next step would be using the same tactic on the front bed panel to remove it, then to do the same with the front sill (sometimes also referred to as a cross member) by separating it from the floor nearest to the front panel.
After the front bed panel and the cross member have both been completely removed front the bed, you'll be able to assess whether you will need both components to make a clean and correct repair to your bed, or if you only need one or the other of the 2 components only.
Remember, at Carolina Classics F-100s we manufacture and stock these 2 parts and you'll get very quick service by ordering from us. We will ship the parts the same day, so not to hold your project up any longer than need be (unless we are out of town attending a Swap Meet or Truck Show).
I'm not to sure you need a lot of details on how to install the NEW front bed panel and front bed sill from Carolina Classics. In most restoration projects, it's taking it apart that's the LEARNING EXPERIENCE. Just use the reverse process in putting it back together. Oh' and if the front floor section of your bed need to be replaced, there's nothing available on the market yet. BUT, if you can find a buddy who has a bed in the same shape that he's NOT planning to use, you can go as far back as between the wheel tubs and cut out a cross section to be trimmed and used to repair the front 4-12" of your rusted floor. AND, you will need to drill some 5/16 or 3/8 inch holes down the 2 outer edges and the bottom edge of the front bed panel, so after lining it up for the install, and securely clamping it into position, you can plug weld through the holes. then when it's all finished, you can grind these down flat, and prep for paint to give you a super smooth, but rigid result.
History Behind the First F-100 Ford style Side Front Bed Header Panel Shipped:
On the very first F-100 Ford style Side Front Bed Header Panel that I shipped out, I watched the tracking number to see when it got delivered. I build a wooden crate for added protection against damage to the part. UPS isn't very happy when you use wood for whatever reason, so I then cover all the wood by enclosing the whole crate in cardboard, I mainly wanted to see if the crate held up and protected the part from any damage. It arrived at the customers house around 4:30 PM. I didn't want to bother him if he was just getting home from work, eating dinner, gone to a kids ball game or whatever, so I waited until 9:30 PM to give him a call.
I asked if the crate held up and if it arrived undamaged and he assured me that it did. Then he said.... it got hear at 4:30, I got home from work, ate dinner, took it to my shop, and by 8:15 I had just finished installing it. He said it actually fit better than any repro part he'd ever used. Now I realize that was a quick install, so I'm assuming that he had his old one already removed, and only had to do the install, but either way, it made me feel good that it was such a well fitting part. But just in case you forgot one step and need a little help on YOUR install, we're also including this link to a 1966 F-100 owner's personal truck (who also purchased one), if you'd like to follow how he's doing his front bed panel and cross member.