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Is there a common frame swap that can be done to replace the X frame of a early 60's Impala? I would like to know if I could use a metric frame, such as one from a 96 Impala, to go under a 60 Impala body.
 

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In a word no.

GM lowered the body lines by recessing and building the frame to be part of the car. In the prior years (such as the 1955-'57 Chevy) you can see the frame as the car sits perched on top of it just like the ancient wooden coaches that were suspended from leather straps off a frame used on the old coaches that is the trade mark of Fisher Body.

There are aftermarket frames built by racing chassis companies that are stronger and stiffer than the factory stock frame, but they are not cheap. If you need a mildly stronger frame buy a used frame out from under a convertible (or if you are willing to modify the frame one out from under a station wagon).

Big Dave
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·

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I would not give up on your frame swap idea. Do some carefull measurements
& I think you will find it is possible if you have the fab skills.

Check the wheelbase the width of each frame.

I would start by going a salvage lot w/a tape measure.

I have done many frame swaps the latest a Rolls on a GM G-body. It was a lot cheaper than trying to repair the Rolls's problems......mainly the hydraulics.

Let us know what you do........Don:)
 

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Why would an X frame from a wagon need to be modified?
In a word no.

GM lowered the body lines by recessing and building the frame to be part of the car. In the prior years (such as the 1955-'57 Chevy) you can see the frame as the car sits perched on top of it just like the ancient wooden coaches that were suspended from leather straps off a frame used on the old coaches that is the trade mark of Fisher Body.

There are aftermarket frames built by racing chassis companies that are stronger and stiffer than the factory stock frame, but they are not cheap. If you need a mildly stronger frame buy a used frame out from under a convertible (or if you are willing to modify the frame one out from under a station wagon).

Big Dave
In a word no.

GM lowered the body lines by recessing and building the frame to be part of the car. In the prior years (such as the 1955-'57 Chevy) you can see the frame as the car sits perched on top of it just like the ancient wooden coaches that were suspended from leather straps off a frame used on the old coaches that is the trade mark of Fisher Body.

There are aftermarket frames built by racing chassis companies that are stronger and stiffer than the factory stock frame, but they are not cheap. If you need a mildly stronger frame buy a used frame out from under a convertible (or if you are willing to modify the frame one out from under a station wagon).

Big Dave
Why would an x-frame from a wagon need to be modified? Reason for me asking is because I just acquired a 64 Impala wagon that has some damage/rust issues in the front section of the frame were the idler arm is located at. A friend of mine has a very good frame on a '60 Impala 4dr car for a reasonable price. I was under the assumption that it would interchange without any differences. (Unless you were referring to a 2dr using a 4dr/wagon frame). Are 4dr & wagon frames unique/specific to each other? Just need make sure the '60 4dr frame will work for my wagon. Thanks in advance - Eric
 

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wagon frames are typically longer in the rear. one of our more knowledgeable members will kick in the specific reason as soon as they catch this thread @jayoldschool @62BillT
Alright. Thanks for the ample response. It's a little rough (has for sure been sitting since '89. Maybe longer than that before being moved to It's current location, which happened in '89). But it's a 1 owner factory AC Impala wagon (283 power glide) with 60k original miles, with a title. Its that blue/green turqoise color. Looks like a good car that's worth putting back on the road. Would hate for it to get crushed. (I just hope it's not too rotted underneath. That yet to be looked over).
 

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Actually, I've always known Wagon Frames to be the same as Passenger Cars, but I would verify that to be sure.

65 & 67 Impala, did you get a chance to check in your Hollander?

Either way, with Frames, I like to stick from year to year. I would want a '64 Frame to go under a '64 car. There can be some differences like how the Bumpers attach, for an example.

Also EPJ89, as much as I'm impressed that you would like to save the car, with that much Frame deterioration, I believe you will be finding other rust issues with the car. But don't let me or others stop you from pursuing it.

Keep us posted on it.
 
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Actually, I've always known Wagon Frames to be the same as Passenger Cars, but I would verify that to be sure.

65 & 67 Impala, did you get a chance to check in your Hollander?

Either way, with Frames, I like to stick from year to year. I would want a '64 Frame to go under a '64 car. There can be some differences like how the Bumpers attach, for an example.

Also EPJ89, as much as I'm impressed that you would like to save the car, with that much Frame deterioration, I believe you will be finding other rust issues with the car. But don't let me or others stop you from pursuing it.

Keep us posted on it.
reading thru my Hollander, it looks like OP is in luck

Hollander says....
'61-64convertible1074
'61-64
others978

they do not specify a wagon frame until 1971

978 part# 3857157
chev 61-62 excluding conv.
chev 63-64 Pass. excluding conv. or taxi
Note: when interchanging between 6 & 9 passenger station wagon change rear cross member
 

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Actually, I've always known Wagon Frames to be the same as Passenger Cars, but I would verify that to be sure.

65 & 67 Impala, did you get a chance to check in your Hollander?

Either way, with Frames, I like to stick from year to year. I would want a '64 Frame to go under a '64 car. There can be some differences like how the Bumpers attach, for an example.

Also EPJ89, as much as I'm impressed that you would like to save the car, with that much Frame deterioration, I believe you will be finding other rust issues with the car. But don't let me or others stop you from pursuing it.

Keep us posted on it.
Yeah, I'm hoping that's not the case. The old man is (who is 88 years old) is letting me have it for free. Matter of fact, his father bought the car brand new in '64. Used to it to haul around and sell auto parts back in the day. Apparently, he had wrecked it in the front at some time a long time ago. I'm assuming that bent up looking section of the frame was a result of that accident. The rust build up only made that specific area only that much worse. But like you said, that many years sitting up in that field, who knows. I'll just have to cut down that tree behind/beside it and drag it out of there. Then get it up in the air and see what it looks like.
 

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QUOTE= "...his father bought the car brand new in '64."

EPJ89, did you ever get this wagon out of the woods? Even if it is too rotten to save, see if you can record the VIN and Cowl Tag data, engine block stamp and original sale date and dealer and city, and other info for the database. I'll reply with my best calculation of date any X-frame Chevrolet was produced.
 
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