New Guy with a "new" to us 51 Pack Patty 400

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My07Bobber
Posts: 9
Joined: Sun Mar 11, 2012 12:21 pm

New Guy with a "new" to us 51 Pack Patty 400

Post by My07Bobber » Sun Mar 11, 2012 12:46 pm

Hello to all, My wife and I are the proud new owners of a 1951 Packard Patrician 400 ! We are very excited of our "new" car. I've already sent in my membership form and plan to attend the Texas meet at the end of the month. The car is all orginal from bumper to bumper but needs a "little" tlc. I am interested in finding some small replacement parts prior to the Texas meet and eager to learn all I can about our Patrician. I've seen some beauties on the internet. The car is a driver. I drove it this past Saturday before I bought it and other than needing front sway bar bushings and that it steers like a Mack truck without power steering, it drove well and I was tickled to death. LOL So, any info from all the pro's on this model are greatly encouraged and apprciated.

Mark & Jana
Granbury, Texas
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Dave Czirr
Moderator
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Joined: Tue Jun 16, 2009 5:30 am
Location: New Jersey

Re: New Guy with a "new" to us 51 Pack Patty 400

Post by Dave Czirr » Sun Mar 11, 2012 1:10 pm

Best of luck with your new Packard. The Patrician is the "top-of-the-line Packard and a very nice car and when properly sorted out it should have impeccable road manners and capable of taking you anywhere you want to go at modern highway speeds. Your comment about hard steering certainly runs contrary to my own experiences and that of others. Incorrect sized or old tires or incorrect inflation pressures can certainly contribute to that, as can worn front end parts or incorrect alignment, and if you haven't done it already, a good grease job can't hurt.

For those parts that you can't source at your local auto parts store (and you'd be surprised at what you can source there), the folks that sponsor this Forum (Kanter Auto Parts) can be extremely helpful. When you call, get connected to the Packard Department and then ask for Stuart - he'll be please to help you.

Keep us posted with your efforts to bring your car back to where you want it to be.

My07Bobber
Posts: 9
Joined: Sun Mar 11, 2012 12:21 pm

Re: New Guy with a "new" to us 51 Pack Patty 400

Post by My07Bobber » Sun Mar 11, 2012 8:41 pm

Thanks for the reply Dave. As I said, my wife and I are very excited. We happened to find a 51 Packard 200 that we went and looked at. There are some parts that we need that this car has. We are also looking forward to meeting new people, hearing the stories about their cars and learning all about ours. As far as our car, it has wide white bias plys so I feel that has something to do with the steering plus the bushings are shot on the sway bar. We look forward to hearing from other forum members as well as those pros like yourself.

Regards,
Mark & Jana

Adam
Posts: 1083
Joined: Fri Sep 04, 2009 4:15 am
Location: lincolnshire, uk

Re: New Guy with a "new" to us 51 Pack Patty 400

Post by Adam » Mon Mar 12, 2012 1:33 am

Hello Mark

What exciting news! Please keep us informed of all your progress. The project blogs are fascinating.

I would echo Dave`s advice regarding the front suspension, it should be light and pleasantly precise on the steering. It would be well worth doing a complete rebuild of the ball joints and inner and outer suspension bushings and the steering rod-ends. Also check the steering box oil level, it may be dry. There will be plenty of advice here on how to tackle the work.

However, in the first place, I suggest jacking the car up and greasing everything with the weight off it, then DRIVING IT. You will build enthusiasm to tackle the job that way. :)

Good luck with it and please keep us informed.

Adam..
"Do not underestimate the English cousin.....they are not as stupid as they look!" - Signor Altabani in The Italian Job.

JWL115C
Posts: 196
Joined: Sat Jul 11, 2009 9:02 am

Re: New Guy with a "new" to us 51 Pack Patty 400

Post by JWL115C » Mon Mar 12, 2012 7:17 am

Mark & Jena,

Congratulations on the Patrician. These are wonderful automobiles, some of the best Packard ever built. Look forward to seeing you and the Packard at Salado.

(o[]o)

Dave Czirr
Moderator
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Joined: Tue Jun 16, 2009 5:30 am
Location: New Jersey

Re: New Guy with a "new" to us 51 Pack Patty 400

Post by Dave Czirr » Tue Mar 13, 2012 7:31 am

There is a 51 Patrician alleged to be in a very carefully maintained state of preservation with about 13,000 miles that will be passing thru my area in the next couple of weeks, enroute to a new owner in Europe. I'll try to photo-document it extensively before it gets to the piers, and will probably post the photos in the "Packard Photos" discussion group - check back in a week or two.

Randy Berger
Posts: 206
Joined: Tue Jul 07, 2009 8:00 pm

Re: New Guy with a "new" to us 51 Pack Patty 400

Post by Randy Berger » Tue Mar 13, 2012 5:58 pm

The Patrician is a very good automobile. Congratulations on your "new" car. I hope you enjoy yours as much as the rest of us do.
Once it is all sorted out, you will really enjoy the luxury ride that the Patrician is.

My07Bobber
Posts: 9
Joined: Sun Mar 11, 2012 12:21 pm

Re: New Guy with a "new" to us 51 Pack Patty 400

Post by My07Bobber » Fri Mar 16, 2012 10:48 pm

Thanks to all for your replies and congrat's. Jana and I are looking forward to our first outting and our first Packard Meet and Club meet. It will be great to put faces with names of those I've already talked to and communicated with as well as meet new ones. It is definitly a work in progress but a labor of love but all of you already knew that......LOL

Mark

4M2500W14
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Joined: Thu Jul 07, 2011 6:09 am

Re: New Guy with a "new" to us 51 Pack Patty 400

Post by 4M2500W14 » Fri Apr 06, 2012 8:40 pm

Hi Mark:
I saw your car at Salado last week. ( I was the fellow right next to your car with the table set up with the PT engine parts display.)
It's going to be a great car when you get done, good and solid, and complete.
I have a nearly all original twin of yours, essentially all original except for the paint, you can see it on the Lone Star Packards region website, http://www.lonestarpackards.com/memberscars.html bottom of the page. This was the first time she wasn't at Salado in about 15 years, between me and the previous owner. Electric fuel pump went out, and she just do well in hot weather restarts without it. I simply ran out of time to get under her and get going.
As to your steering: yes, the grease job is a must and is absolutely the best advice. But, two other things I found were just as important and make all the difference in going from the "Queen Mary" steering response to the original easy feel that Packard designed in: Tire size, and air pressure. There is a temptation by many to use wider tires to increase lateral stability. When we bought the car she was equipped with Firestone 721s. A great tire, but too wide and soft it turned out. The replacements that I put on were the factory specified size, bias ply, with tubes. They are about 20% narrower, and the air pressure at factory specs made all the difference. Four or five pounds low, and you get tremendous steering drag and squeal on turns.
I think Packard Engineering knew what they were doing for the technology available to them at the time, so I tend to use what they specified and things seem to work better. Isn't that amazing!!!
Enjoy your car, I know we love our "Bess" on tour. She's about to get vintage air conditioning for all-season runs in South Texas.
Email if I can help with any particulars.
Steve

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