Re: Hello! Newbie Questions from potential Packard owner [Pre-War (1899-1942)] (2024)

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Wat_Tyler

Re: Hello! Newbie Questions from potential Packard owner

#11

Home away from home
Re: Hello! Newbie Questions from potential Packard owner [Pre-War (1899-1942)] (6)


Re: Hello! Newbie Questions from potential Packard owner [Pre-War (1899-1942)] (7)
Re: Hello! Newbie Questions from potential Packard owner [Pre-War (1899-1942)] (8)

I bought a Packard because:

1) I wanted a good-looking fastback coupe from the post-war era. Packard had the most interesting looking coupe out there.

2) Granddad owned a few bathtub Packards and I got a chance to turn a few wrenches on them when I was a teenager. Hell, he even let me change the plugs in his '49 Super which had maybe 40K miles on it at the time. I was 14, maybe.

3) Fixers were available (and still are) for a few grand. Clippers. For a few more grand, you can get a decent driver. A few more grand at that gets you a nice one.

4) Allegedly, the big Packard 8 was the fastest car outta Deetroit those years.

So, I pulled the trigger. I may have gone a bit overboard, but it's my money, damn it. I have a '46 sedan driver, 3 coupes and 2 sedans project fixers, and 4 parts cars.

One car is parked on grass. The horses do a great job of keeping the grass around the cat gnawed down to an acceptable level so we don't (as much) look like Po' White Trash.

Were I you: I'd avoid the 12s. Money pits, they look like. Stick with 8s. Packard may have made as good a straight 8 as came outta Deetroit, ever. The Supers are more expensive, but there's nothing wrong with a good 120, and my opinion is dripping with hubris. I'd have one. The driver has the same 282 engine, and it has more guts than I thought it would. A bit of contempt prior to investigation, perhaps.

Here's the thing. It's like when I bought my first motorcycle after a 30-some year hiatus. I wanted a Harley, so I found a decent Sportster for a reasonable sum. I spent a lot less money on the off-hand chance that if I hated it, I could dump it easily. If I tore it up, I wouldn't be out much. Twenty months later, I traded it for a Deluxe, and next year, that for a Road Glide. I knew what I wanted then.

If you start with a decent 120, then you'll be able to ask the man in the mirror who owns one and see what he says. If you decide that you've lost your mind, you're not out much. Hiring a guy to work on a 12 is how his kid goes to university on your dime.

I love answering questions like these. I should write a @#$%&* book . . . .


Posted on: 2022/5/31 19:13

If you're not having fun, maybe it's your own damned fault.

1929PackardGuy

Re: Hello! Newbie Questions from potential Packard owner

#12

Home away from home
Re: Hello! Newbie Questions from potential Packard owner [Pre-War (1899-1942)] (12)


Re: Hello! Newbie Questions from potential Packard owner [Pre-War (1899-1942)] (13)
Re: Hello! Newbie Questions from potential Packard owner [Pre-War (1899-1942)] (14)

Hello from another Louisiana native! I work in Baton Rouge, live in Denham Springs, I have a '29 633 Club Sedan I bought in August of 2021. Having said that, I'm 58 now and spent three years as a teenager restoring big classics for the late Bob Crump here in Baton Rouge, he had 72 cars, L29 Cords, Packards, Pierce-Arrows, Auburns, Cadillacs, you name it. So, my '29 is my late middle age crisis coming back after playing with muscle cars for the last thirty years.

Several things to address. There are NO clubs left down here that will help you at all - NONE. Back in the 1980s and 1990s, we had a healthy AACA and Model A club and there were statewide events. The AACA still exists here on paper, but they have virtually no members and hardly any events - and an old car for them now is a '65 Mustang. There are VERY few prewar STOCK cars in Louisiana now - the vast majority are street rods.

I am relearning a lot of what I forgot, my car is a 20 year old restoration that's now a good driver and respectible looking, it has a nice history, and it was a running and driving car when purchased. I drive it as much as I can, but here's what I can tell you about being where we are.

There are NO Packard "experts" anywhere near us. There are only a handful of us in Louisiana that have prewar Packards. NOBODY will work on the car for you, you'd better know how to do things yourself and know somebody who has a well-equipped shop or have a well-equipped shop of your own. Here in Baton Rouge, I couldn't get ANY shop, to even mount tires on my car, I had to do it myself in my carport because they were all scared to death of the snap-ring wire wheels - not even heavy equipment or truck places would do it. I am still trying to get someone to redo some of the paint work on my car - after almost a year of searching, I can't find anyone that will touch it, at any price, locally. The repainting that has been done was done by myself and a friend at his shop. You'd better know how to do all the mechanical work yourself as well, and all the electrical work - again, NOBODY, NOT ONE SINGLE AUTO REPAIR SHOP, would even consider helping me with my car, even on trivial matters such as adjusting valves or working on an on-going problem with the rear springs. From carb adjusting to timing to valve adjustments to rebuilding the horn, had to do all that by my lonesome with advice from people here, my memories from forty years ago, and help from the Packard Facebook group. Down here, you are on your own. Since I bought my car last August, I've met one other prewar Packard owner in this state, he has a '36 120 sedan, and I've been to half a dozen little parking lot shows and I've seen maybe three restored original Model A Fords - all other prewar cars I've seen have been street rods.

Other major issue you'll have down here - HEAT! You already know it, it's very hot down here and these cars do NOT like the humidity and heat we have - thus, driving season is from September to early May if we're fortunate. During the summer, you will be limited to very short trips only - the car will overheat and you will suffocate in it. Even back in the eighties that was a major problem for us - when it's 95 degrees outside with 70% humidity, there's not much you can do to keep the car cool and you really don't want to be out there in it. So, summertime is when you do all the heavier maintenance.

I'm not trying to sound like a doomsayer, but if you do not have a good mechanical knowledge of old cars, any prewar Packard is not going to be a good idea, not even a later 120. As others have said, if you want to learn stock prewar cars, start with something more simple - get a Model A, or a '34 Ford, where you can at least pick up a catalog and order parts and the data on the web is virtually endless on those things.

I love my Packard, I intend to have it a long time, but I wouldn't have jumped blindly into it if I hadn't messed with them for years when I was a teenager. They are magnificent cars, but, parts for the older ones are extremely difficult to find, they are expensive to maintain, and in our neck of the woods, their useage is very limited by our climate.

If you can learn quickly, you have the disposable income, and you go into this knowing you're only going to be able to drive it for five or six months out of the year, then welcome aboard. If you've never had a stone stock 80 or 90 year old car before, I would strongly advise you to start off with something a lot more common, learn the basics, and wait a few years.

Would love to have more Packard friends down here, but, just go into this knowing we are cut off from the world down here. With you being closer to Houston, that might be a help, but outside of Houston, you'll not find much help, you'll not find local clubs that will help, and you'll find very few events you can attend without hauling your car there on a trailer and traveling a good distance.

Not trying to be a wet blanket, but, after having been out of the prewar car realm for decades, getting my '29 last summer has been a major eye opener for me. We had hundreds of stock prewar cars down here in the early 1980s and very active clubs. Now, virtually nothing is left, and I do mean nothing!

Message me if you like, I'll be glad to help anyway I can, that black '34 is a beauty.


Posted on: 2022/6/1 15:03

wardog

Re: Hello! Newbie Questions from potential Packard owner

#13

Just popping in
Re: Hello! Newbie Questions from potential Packard owner [Pre-War (1899-1942)] (19)


Re: Hello! Newbie Questions from potential Packard owner [Pre-War (1899-1942)] (20)
Re: Hello! Newbie Questions from potential Packard owner [Pre-War (1899-1942)] (21)

Quote:


1929PackardGuy wrote:
Hello from another Louisiana native! I work in Baton Rouge, live in Denham Springs, I have a '29 633 Club Sedan I bought in August of 2021. Having said that, I'm 58 now and spent three years as a teenager restoring big classics for the late Bob Crump here in Baton Rouge, he had 72 cars, L29 Cords, Packards, Pierce-Arrows, Auburns, Cadillacs, you name it. So, my '29 is my late middle age crisis coming back after playing with muscle cars for the last thirty years.

Several things to address. There are NO clubs left down here that will help you at all - NONE. Back in the 1980s and 1990s, we had a healthy AACA and Model A club and there were statewide events. The AACA still exists here on paper, but they have virtually no members and hardly any events - and an old car for them now is a '65 Mustang. There are VERY few prewar STOCK cars in Louisiana now - the vast majority are street rods.

I am relearning a lot of what I forgot, my car is a 20 year old restoration that's now a good driver and respectible looking, it has a nice history, and it was a running and driving car when purchased. I drive it as much as I can, but here's what I can tell you about being where we are.

There are NO Packard "experts" anywhere near us. There are only a handful of us in Louisiana that have prewar Packards. NOBODY will work on the car for you, you'd better know how to do things yourself and know somebody who has a well-equipped shop or have a well-equipped shop of your own. Here in Baton Rouge, I couldn't get ANY shop, to even mount tires on my car, I had to do it myself in my carport because they were all scared to death of the snap-ring wire wheels - not even heavy equipment or truck places would do it. I am still trying to get someone to redo some of the paint work on my car - after almost a year of searching, I can't find anyone that will touch it, at any price, locally. The repainting that has been done was done by myself and a friend at his shop. You'd better know how to do all the mechanical work yourself as well, and all the electrical work - again, NOBODY, NOT ONE SINGLE AUTO REPAIR SHOP, would even consider helping me with my car, even on trivial matters such as adjusting valves or working on an on-going problem with the rear springs. From carb adjusting to timing to valve adjustments to rebuilding the horn, had to do all that by my lonesome with advice from people here, my memories from forty years ago, and help from the Packard Facebook group. Down here, you are on your own. Since I bought my car last August, I've met one other prewar Packard owner in this state, he has a '36 120 sedan, and I've been to half a dozen little parking lot shows and I've seen maybe three restored original Model A Fords - all other prewar cars I've seen have been street rods.

Other major issue you'll have down here - HEAT! You already know it, it's very hot down here and these cars do NOT like the humidity and heat we have - thus, driving season is from September to early May if we're fortunate. During the summer, you will be limited to very short trips only - the car will overheat and you will suffocate in it. Even back in the eighties that was a major problem for us - when it's 95 degrees outside with 70% humidity, there's not much you can do to keep the car cool and you really don't want to be out there in it. So, summertime is when you do all the heavier maintenance.

I'm not trying to sound like a doomsayer, but if you do not have a good mechanical knowledge of old cars, any prewar Packard is not going to be a good idea, not even a later 120. As others have said, if you want to learn stock prewar cars, start with something more simple - get a Model A, or a '34 Ford, where you can at least pick up a catalog and order parts and the data on the web is virtually endless on those things.

I love my Packard, I intend to have it a long time, but I wouldn't have jumped blindly into it if I hadn't messed with them for years when I was a teenager. They are magnificent cars, but, parts for the older ones are extremely difficult to find, they are expensive to maintain, and in our neck of the woods, their useage is very limited by our climate.

If you can learn quickly, you have the disposable income, and you go into this knowing you're only going to be able to drive it for five or six months out of the year, then welcome aboard. If you've never had a stone stock 80 or 90 year old car before, I would strongly advise you to start off with something a lot more common, learn the basics, and wait a few years.

Would love to have more Packard friends down here, but, just go into this knowing we are cut off from the world down here. With you being closer to Houston, that might be a help, but outside of Houston, you'll not find much help, you'll not find local clubs that will help, and you'll find very few events you can attend without hauling your car there on a trailer and traveling a good distance.

Not trying to be a wet blanket, but, after having been out of the prewar car realm for decades, getting my '29 last summer has been a major eye opener for me. We had hundreds of stock prewar cars down here then and active clubs. Now, virtually nothing.

Message me if you like, I'll be glad to help anyway I can, that black '34 is a beauty.

Thank you so much! Absolutely great info. Not surprised to find out you are on your own down here... I have been worried about finding a shop that would help... Again, great info. I'm in no rush. As of now I have no (extra) garage space anyway...


Posted on: 2022/6/1 17:07

wardog

Re: Hello! Newbie Questions from potential Packard owner

#14

Just popping in
Re: Hello! Newbie Questions from potential Packard owner [Pre-War (1899-1942)] (24)


Re: Hello! Newbie Questions from potential Packard owner [Pre-War (1899-1942)] (25)
Re: Hello! Newbie Questions from potential Packard owner [Pre-War (1899-1942)] (26)

@1929PackardGuy and others...

Again, thanks for all the great info and responses.

Maybe a Packard wouldn't be the best first really old car to own... Also on my classic bucket list is a 1941 Cadillac. Would this be easier to find a shop to work on than a similar year Packard? Would the Caddy flathead V8 be easier to find parts for?


Posted on: 2022/6/3 16:21

BDC

Re: Hello! Newbie Questions from potential Packard owner

#15

Home away from home
Re: Hello! Newbie Questions from potential Packard owner [Pre-War (1899-1942)] (29)


Re: Hello! Newbie Questions from potential Packard owner [Pre-War (1899-1942)] (30)
Re: Hello! Newbie Questions from potential Packard owner [Pre-War (1899-1942)] (31)

Well here's a 1941 that you can practice on. It runs and the price is right.
https://huntsville.craigslist.org/cto/d/huntsville-1941-packard/7491618882.html

And if you dont like it or get tired of it you're not in for a ton of money


Posted on: 2022/6/3 17:24

I can explain it to you but I can't understand it for you Re: Hello! Newbie Questions from potential Packard owner [Pre-War (1899-1942)] (32)

Bad company corrupts good character!

Farming: the art of losing money while working 100 hours a week to feed people who think you are trying to kill them

MJG

Re: Hello! Newbie Questions from potential Packard owner

#16

Home away from home
Re: Hello! Newbie Questions from potential Packard owner [Pre-War (1899-1942)] (35)


Re: Hello! Newbie Questions from potential Packard owner [Pre-War (1899-1942)] (36)
Re: Hello! Newbie Questions from potential Packard owner [Pre-War (1899-1942)] (37)

Quote:


wardog wrote:
@1929PackardGuy and others...

Again, thanks for all the great info and responses.

Maybe a Packard wouldn't be the best first really old car to own... Also on my classic bucket list is a 1941 Cadillac. Would this be easier to find a shop to work on than a similar year Packard? Would the Caddy flathead V8 be easier to find parts for?

As you can tell from my signature, it was one on my list too. 1941 Cadillacs are usually one of the top three years collected in the CLC as it was a landmark year for Cadillac. Parts are usually available, though some can be more difficult to find. Mechanical parts are usually not the problem. Avoid the Hydramatics (first year and took the war to work out the bugs). Lots of resources to help keep them on the road. You will have a similar problem finding folks to work on them. The talent pool is disappearing with each passing year. I am slowly gravitating to becoming a one-man band. Years ago I wouldn't paint a car, now I'm looking to get an inflatable paint booth. Years ago I wouldn't fathom doing upholstery, now I'm looking at Sailrite machines. Luckily for me I'm willing to take the time to learn and perfect a craft. Plan on doing your own work unless you have deep pockets. Great road cars though and can keep up with modern traffic.

Mike


Posted on: 2022/6/3 21:23

1948 Custom Eight Victoria Convertible
Others:
1941 Cadillac Series 62 Deluxe Convertible Coupe
1956 Oldsmobile 88 Sedan

humanpotatohybrid

Re: Hello! Newbie Questions from potential Packard owner

#17

Home away from home
Re: Hello! Newbie Questions from potential Packard owner [Pre-War (1899-1942)] (40)


Re: Hello! Newbie Questions from potential Packard owner [Pre-War (1899-1942)] (41)
Re: Hello! Newbie Questions from potential Packard owner [Pre-War (1899-1942)] (42)

Yeah that 41 looks pretty solid. I think just a good vacuuming would get it twice as pretty as it is. Just check for rust underneath.

Only suspicious area is the rear seat armrests. I wonder if there was some water intrusion, or just critters... because someone moved them out of the factory position.

Compare the views here:https://packardinfo.com/xoops/html/downloads/1941_110_120_Brochure.pdf


Posted on: 2022/6/3 22:11

1955 400 | Registry | Project Blog
1955 Clipper Deluxe | Registry | Project Blog
1955 Clipper Super Panama | Registry

humanpotatohybrid

Re: Hello! Newbie Questions from potential Packard owner

#18

Home away from home
Re: Hello! Newbie Questions from potential Packard owner [Pre-War (1899-1942)] (45)


Re: Hello! Newbie Questions from potential Packard owner [Pre-War (1899-1942)] (46)
Re: Hello! Newbie Questions from potential Packard owner [Pre-War (1899-1942)] (47)

Here's a 1925 Packard that looks like a reasonable value; though I honestly don't know enough to tell, $36k for what seems to be a completely sorted car seems fair.

https://www.facebook.com/marketplace/item/1030538230915451/

Or just pick up this """complete""" 1927 model for only $15k
Re: Hello! Newbie Questions from potential Packard owner [Pre-War (1899-1942)] (48)
https://www.facebook.com/marketplace/item/513709070405735/


Posted on: 2022/6/4 0:05

1955 400 | Registry | Project Blog
1955 Clipper Deluxe | Registry | Project Blog
1955 Clipper Super Panama | Registry

bkazmer

Re: Hello! Newbie Questions from potential Packard owner

#19

Home away from home
Re: Hello! Newbie Questions from potential Packard owner [Pre-War (1899-1942)] (51)


Re: Hello! Newbie Questions from potential Packard owner [Pre-War (1899-1942)] (52)
Re: Hello! Newbie Questions from potential Packard owner [Pre-War (1899-1942)] (53)

I agree that the 41 Cadillac is an attractive car, but from a very prejudiced viewpoint, Packard offered a superior car.
The equivalent to a Cadillac 62 is a Packard 160. Almost 20% more power in the Packard. The larger engined Buicks also outperformed the Cadillac.


Posted on: 2022/6/4 7:07

Wat_Tyler

Re: Hello! Newbie Questions from potential Packard owner

#20

Home away from home
Re: Hello! Newbie Questions from potential Packard owner [Pre-War (1899-1942)] (56)


Re: Hello! Newbie Questions from potential Packard owner [Pre-War (1899-1942)] (57)
Re: Hello! Newbie Questions from potential Packard owner [Pre-War (1899-1942)] (58)

You could do a metric $#!ttonne worse than a 1941 120.

And Wat can he'p a brother out with 282 engine bits if Fred would get that damned thing torn down.


Posted on: 2022/6/4 9:02

If you're not having fun, maybe it's your own damned fault.

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