1949 Packard 8 Club Sedan

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Tinman_70
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1949 Packard 8 Club Sedan

Post by Tinman_70 » Tue Jul 02, 2013 1:24 pm

My 1949 Packard 8 Series 23 Club Sedan - The Good, The Bad and The Ugly

I purchased a 1949 Packard 8 Club Sedan (#2395 5128) a couple of months ago. I’ve been working on it to make it road worthy. I evaluated it as good, bad and ugly based on its condition.

It’s good because the car is original and complete with a couple of minor exceptions. The engine runs smooth with no smoke or blow-by. The interior has been redone in apparently the original style broadcloth and is in very good condition. The glass is good with the exception of a cracked passenger door window. The electrical system is in working order for most components after a minor adjustment. The chrome on the bumpers is excellent and the front bumper guards are good. One rear guard needs re-chrome and the other needs to be replaced. All the stainless side trim is complete and in very good condition as are the Packard emblems. Sometime in the past, the front clip was replaced with a Series 22 set of fenders and hood. Probably done due to rust rather than collision damage. The glass in the taillights and parking lights is good except for a crack in one parking light. Someone had done a brake job just before I bought it. It has new wheel cylinders because I found the old ones in the trunk.

The bad is due primarily to the condition of the chrome over pot metal, both exterior and interior. I now know what “defense” chrome means! Almost every piece of pot metal will have to be re-chromed or replaced. Have found some pieces on ebay. The escutcheon on the passenger outside door handle is broken and the handle will have to be replaced but the rest of the pieces are just pitted. The tires hold air but I wouldn’t want to drive far on them. They will be replaced. Also needing replacement are the shocks. Driving the car is like piloting a boat in rough seas!

The ugly is spelled RUST! I am sure that is why the front clip was replaced. The front bumper pan is original and it is in bad shape. The rocker panels on both sides are basically gone along with a good portion of the bottom of the drivers door. The lower rear quarters are also in very bad shape. The rear portion on the trunk floor from the spare well forward is also completely gone. The trunk weatherstrip was shot allowing water to collect in the trunk causing severe rust. The weatherstrip on the front doors hard as a rock or gone, causing the rust at the bottom of the doors. Fortunately, replacement panels are available for most of this.

So this is basically what I had to start with. The project objective is to keep the car as original as possible without breaking the bank. I’m doing most of the work myself to keep the costs down as this car is cool but not a high value model. As I noted earlier, the only non-stock items I found are the installation of a “turn to start” ignition switch, a manual choke kit and an aftermarket oil pressure gauge.

With the help of the Forum and information on Packardinfo, I’ve made some good progress. I’ll post my efforts on the forum blog.
Last edited by Tinman_70 on Thu Jul 04, 2013 9:51 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Dave Czirr
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Re: 1949 Packard 8 Club Sedan

Post by Dave Czirr » Tue Jul 02, 2013 2:36 pm

Thanks so much for starting a project blog, we look forward to watching your continuing progress and helping where we can. BTW, "defense chrome" was in the 1952-1953 time frame.

You can post up to 7 pictures per post, but picture size is limited to 748 kiB, so perhaps you pictures were too large? Resize them and try again or if you can't resize, you can email them to me and I'll be glad to resize and post for you. PM me if you need help with that.

Dave

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Re: 1949 Packard 8 Club Sedan

Post by Tinman_70 » Wed Jul 03, 2013 1:28 pm

My original pictures on the day I bought the car.
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Re: 1949 Packard 8 Club Sedan

Post by Tinman_70 » Fri Jul 05, 2013 1:26 pm

P5150645A.jpg
The first task I wanted to undertake was replacing the broken passenger side window and replacing the weather stripping in the doors. Both doors were gutted removing the glass, the vent windows, all the weather stripping (what was left of it!) and the window regulators (lifters). Removed all the glass from the retaining channels and the vent window frame. It was obvious that the window broke because the roller and joints in the regulator had not been lubricated since the car was built.

While the glass shop was cutting the new passenger glass, the drivers door was removed to repair the rust. The inner and outer metal in the lower front corner was badly rusted. A new door was in order but the cost was out of the question. Fabricated a reinforcement for the inner metal on the door bottom and a patch panel for the outer skin. Welded it up and replaced the door.
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The glass retaining channels for both windows were not in great shape but were usable after cleaning. Reset the vent glass and side glass in their frames and channels with 1/16" setting tape. Installed new vent weather stripping and all new weather stripping for the side glass. Cleaned, lubed and reinstalled the regulators then the glass. Glass now moves smoothly up and down in the channels. Also replaced the worn out door stop rubber bushings.
P3090118A.jpg
Vent window and division bar weather strip - Steele Rubber Products
Generic channel, belt weather strip and glass setting tape - Restoration Specialties
Generic door stop bushings - Bob Drake Reproductions
New passenger side glass - Local glass shop ($50)
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Re: 1949 Packard 8 Club Sedan

Post by Tinman_70 » Mon Jul 08, 2013 2:01 pm

Neither of the horns on the car would sound. I disassembled the steering wheel horn button and ring. The button was hard to remove because a black rubber donut shaped part had glued the plastic horn button to the horn ring. Getting it all apart, I found a brass disk with what was the remains of the horn wire that used to run down the steering column. I cleaned the disk then soldered a new piece of wire to it.
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I started with the horns and worked backwards. Removed both horns and tested both directly from the positive and negative posts of the battery, one was completely dead and the other only gave out a grunt. Removed the round covers off the back of the horns and cleaned the contact points and re-tested, both now work fine. Adjusted the tone and tightened the lock nuts on the points. Cleaned, painted and re-installed both horns. Checked each to make sure they had a good chassis ground. Removed the horn relay for better access and grounded the terminal that comes from the steering column. To my surprise, the horn relay pulled and both horns sounded. Traced the wire from the horn relay to an unconnected wire with what the wiring diagram called a "Douglas" connector. Grounded the connector and the horns sounded. At this point it was just a matter of snaking the new wire connected to the brass disk down the steering column, re-installing the horn ring and connecting the wire to the "Douglas" connector. I now have a fully operational set of horns. I believe that at some point in the car's 60+ year life, the wire in the steering column got frayed and grounded to the steering column. Rather than fixing it, the wire was just disconnected.
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Re: 1949 Packard 8 Club Sedan

Post by Tinman_70 » Tue Jul 09, 2013 1:41 pm

In the first blog entry, I talked about the good, the bad and the ugly, here are some pictures of the UGLY. The rockers are badly rusted as are the lower quarters and the trunk floor.
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I purchased the replacement sheet metal for the inner and outer rockers and the trunk floor but I haven't found anything for the lower quarters yet. Got it direct from C2C Fabrication. I'm going to work on the trunk floor first because the doors are going to have to come off to fix the rockers and quarters to prevent any welding damage.
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I drained and dropped the gas tank first. With a die grinder, tin snips, drill, air chisel and about 4 hours work, I was able to completely remove the trunk floor. Most of the floor was loose but some of the spot welds were difficult to get out.
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Here's what's left of the floor.
P3130133A.jpg


The new floor is slightly oversize so I'm making cardboard patterns that I will use to trim it to size. To be continued.
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Re: 1949 Packard 8 Club Sedan

Post by genehouse » Tue Jul 09, 2013 2:36 pm

Great work! You give me courage to tackle a project I've been considering when I get some money ahead to start another one. I found an old Hudson (yeah I know its not a Packard but it is a neat looking car) that I can pick up for a very small amount of cash I think. I've just got to get it out of his field. Keep up the good work and the dynamite pictures. Gene
1949 Super 8 Limousine
1939 Buick Special
1926 Star 6
1926 Star Landau (still in AZ waiting for me to pick it up!)

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Re: 1949 Packard 8 Club Sedan

Post by Tinman_70 » Wed Jul 10, 2013 4:58 am

Go for it Gene. Many cars can be saved rather than being allowed to rot away. I'm not trying to build an award-winning show car just trying to keep a cool old car from being stripped of its valuable parts and crushed. Joe
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Re: 1949 Packard 8 Club Sedan

Post by Tinman_70 » Wed Jul 10, 2013 12:21 pm

Trunk Floor Replacement - Continued

I had to make some cardboard patterns to get an exact fit for the oversize sheet metal replacement panel. Marked the centerline of the trunk and created a mock-up pattern for the left half using scrape pieces of poster board. Once it was fitted, a final pattern was cut. Flipped the mock-up left pattern over and used it to fit the right side. No, the Packard trunk is not quite symmetrical.
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Once it was fitted, a final right pattern was cut. Both sides were installed and checked for fit.
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The patterns were laid on the sheet metal and it was trimmed with snips. 20 gauge sheet metal is somewhat more difficult to install than flimsy poster board. But with shaking and some addition trimming, it fit nice and snug.
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It still needs to secured to the car and the rust around the spare tire well needs to be fixed. I'll post again when it's completely done.
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Re: 1949 Packard 8 Club Sedan

Post by dmdelavan » Wed Jul 10, 2013 2:19 pm

I hope we will be seeing more such posts. It may inspire others to do it themselves or at least to know what can and should be done.
Don Gutting

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