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Old 8th August 2009, 01:09   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MARCUS_520i View Post
Harit Sir, this is an Aug-Oct '04 incident.
So by now, the car should be 5 years down it's post-restoration life, breathing air, sipping fuel and hopefully in the hands of a genuine caretaker.
OOps blame it on speed reading. Now I would like to hear more, how the job was done and where is she now. The photo promised for every day did not appear yesterday.

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Originally Posted by anjan_c2007 View Post
harit would like to hear more details about the coupe. Was it from Pune? I mean the first owner. If thats true, did the coupe have a canvas hood and was metallic steel grey in colour, originally? If all the answers are YES then the car belonged to my near relatives in Pune. I have totally forgotten its registration number.
I am sure there are chances, because there may have been only a very few Fleetmaster coupes in India. Do post the pictures.
To answer your questions, yes, no, maybe. She came to me from Indore but was originally lying near Pune. Was greyish in colour, maybe it was metallic. She was overcoated when I got her. This is a coupe, so steel roof. I have heard of one more coupe, supposed to be black, and maybe Jaipur or army connections.
BTW, there are about 2 or 3 convertibles around, they would have a canvass top. There is some confusion here.

Now I would really like you to enquire what really happened to that car. I got her without engine, gearbox, non original rear axel, screwed up suspension. Imagine what I did when a Fleetmaster was broken up in Mumbai CHor Bazar about 3 to 4 months ago? Yes I clapped in glee!
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Old 8th August 2009, 10:14   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tonrag View Post

I inspected it, and my heart sank.

I’ll keep uploading photos every day.
Every true, genuine car lovers heart will sink seeing such beauties rot to the ground.

Good that you jumped in to save the car

Its been 5 yrs now since its restoration started. By this time the car should be running...!

Could you be kind enough to post the next set of pics

Last edited by PAVAN KADAM : 8th August 2009 at 10:16.
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Old 8th August 2009, 14:19   #18
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tonrag sir, are you not getting hic-cups ? Half the forum is thinking of you.. Can we hear a peep please ?
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Old 8th August 2009, 17:08   #19
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Thanks for the encouraging responses! Iím sorry I couldnít post any pictures yesterday as I was traveling.

Regarding Haritís points, yes, as pictured, the car did not look very bad. However, a closer examination revealed quite a horror story. There was extensive corrosion and virtually every part of the car had borne some damage. The carís restoration was completed in October, 2004. Unfortunately, its ownership is still disputed Ė the government has promised to indemnify the eventual owner, whoever that might be. Till such time, the car is in the custody of the Roerich trust, a government sponsored society that is in charge of the estate and properties concerned. It is used occasionally; the last time was about a month back, when a high level delegation came from Russia.

At the time of the restoration, I headed the Rural Development administration in Karnataka, which also comprised of a rural engineering division; mainly concerned with the deployment and maintenance of drilling rigs. We have a vehicle maintenance division there, with some wonderful and experienced mechanics. Several of the seniors had joined the government after experience gained in local workshops, where they had dealt with older cars. They were also adept in fabricating mechanical parts, which they often had to do, to keep obsolete rigs in service. Therefore, most of the restoration was completed in-house. We did get two sets of tinkers and the upholsterers from outside, though. The car didn't leave our workshop premises.

My schedule those days was to inspect the car at 9.30 in the morning, leave instructions on what to do, then leave office at six thirty to don overalls and work alongside my team till 10 or 10.30 PM. On some days, we broke up after midnight. There was utterly no leeway for delay. It was a matter of complying with the word given by the Karnataka government to the Russian government.

The overall cost of the restoration was about Rs. 2.25 lakhs. However, this did not include the salaries of the staff, which was being borne by the government anyway.

I have posted some pictures of the exterior of the car as we found it.
Attached Thumbnails
A lightning quick restoration - '48 Chevy Fleetmaster-zzj_picture-1.jpg  

A lightning quick restoration - '48 Chevy Fleetmaster-zzj_picture-2.jpg  

A lightning quick restoration - '48 Chevy Fleetmaster-zzj_picture-3.jpg  

A lightning quick restoration - '48 Chevy Fleetmaster-zzj_picture-4.jpg  

A lightning quick restoration - '48 Chevy Fleetmaster-zzj_picture-5.jpg  

A lightning quick restoration - '48 Chevy Fleetmaster-zzj_picture-6.jpg  

A lightning quick restoration - '48 Chevy Fleetmaster-zzj_picture-7.jpg  

A lightning quick restoration - '48 Chevy Fleetmaster-zzj_picture-8.jpg  

A lightning quick restoration - '48 Chevy Fleetmaster-zzj_picture-9.jpg  

A lightning quick restoration - '48 Chevy Fleetmaster-zzj_picture-10.jpg  

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Old 9th August 2009, 00:10   #20
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OMG...OMG!!! how could this happen to this beauty. best of luck with resto man.
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Old 9th August 2009, 01:05   #21
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Glad tosee the other pics. at last!

I feel really terrible for the poor car! But glad that she was saved in time!

One question though- is the car still registered in the Roerichs' name/s?? Or did she change hands while they were alive? Because if not, then it would not really be possible for it to have been used in illegal activities.
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Old 9th August 2009, 08:47   #22
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Stanher, I have no idea of the details of how the car landed in a police station, nor of the status of the RC. The government had to file an affidavit in court, with an indemnity bond undertaking to indemnify the final owner in case the decision went his/her way, before the car was permitted to be released for restoration. Here are today's photos, mostly of the exterior. The damage to the running boards on both sides was extensive.
Attached Thumbnails
A lightning quick restoration - '48 Chevy Fleetmaster-zzj_picture-11.jpg  

A lightning quick restoration - '48 Chevy Fleetmaster-zzj_picture-12.jpg  

A lightning quick restoration - '48 Chevy Fleetmaster-zzj_picture-13.jpg  

A lightning quick restoration - '48 Chevy Fleetmaster-zzj_picture-15.jpg  

A lightning quick restoration - '48 Chevy Fleetmaster-zzj_picture-16.jpg  

A lightning quick restoration - '48 Chevy Fleetmaster-zzj_picture-17.jpg  

A lightning quick restoration - '48 Chevy Fleetmaster-zzj_picture-18.jpg  

A lightning quick restoration - '48 Chevy Fleetmaster-zzj_picture-19.jpg  

A lightning quick restoration - '48 Chevy Fleetmaster-zzj_picture-20.jpg  

A lightning quick restoration - '48 Chevy Fleetmaster-zzj_picture-21.jpg  

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Old 9th August 2009, 11:05   #23
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The last picture is the scariest thats when water collects on the roof, slowly eats through the metal and thats the end of the roof and the car. I saw that happen to one of my friends cars while it was parked in the garage.
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Old 9th August 2009, 22:14   #24
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This is my second post for the day to catch up with no posts made on Friday. Iíve posted pictures of the interior of the car as found. At first sight, it was a terrible mess Ė it had been used as a garbage dump and had papers, metal shreds, even chicken bones, inside! However, a closer examination revealed that most of the door trim was there, including the thin chrome beadings that embellish them, and the metal door cappings with their clipped on embellishments. The dashboard was not so good, though. The speedo, ammeter, oil pressure gauge and fuel gauges were there, but couldnít be read. The large clock on the left side was missing, as also the centre console cover, a concoction of chrome. The steering wheel boss was missing too. An interesting find was a red enameled badge depicting what looked like a helmeted soldier, riveted on the glove compartment lid. This was obviously not original, but I was never able to find out what it depicted, who put it there and why. I handed over some photos to some of the Russians with whom one met then, but they were also unable to throw much light on this.
The exercise of thoroughly documenting an unrestored car is a rewarding one, even though it can be very messy. The details discovered then are of infinite value during the restoration. A nice find, apart from the unidentified badge was the Ďbody by Fisherí one, just beside the seat adjustment handle on the outer side of the driverís seat.

A question for the Mods; is it OK if I post 10 photos every day, describing the progress of the restoration? Or would you prefer that I speed it up and complete the story in a week or so?
Attached Thumbnails
A lightning quick restoration - '48 Chevy Fleetmaster-zzj_picture-15.jpg  

A lightning quick restoration - '48 Chevy Fleetmaster-zzj_picture-16.jpg  

A lightning quick restoration - '48 Chevy Fleetmaster-zzj_picture-17.jpg  

A lightning quick restoration - '48 Chevy Fleetmaster-zzj_picture-18.jpg  

A lightning quick restoration - '48 Chevy Fleetmaster-zzj_picture-19.jpg  

A lightning quick restoration - '48 Chevy Fleetmaster-zzj_picture-21.jpg  

A lightning quick restoration - '48 Chevy Fleetmaster-zzj_picture-22.jpg  

A lightning quick restoration - '48 Chevy Fleetmaster-zzj_picture-23.jpg  

A lightning quick restoration - '48 Chevy Fleetmaster-zzj_picture-24.jpg  

A lightning quick restoration - '48 Chevy Fleetmaster-zzj_picture-26.jpg  

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Old 9th August 2009, 23:20   #25
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Wow, I can see TWO winder handles on one of the front doors. Is the small one meant to open the quarter glass ?
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Old 9th August 2009, 23:21   #26
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tonrag View Post
Stanher, ................................................. The damage to the running boards on both sides was extensive.
Where is the running board
I am dying to see the final picture of the car after restoration.

Cheers harit
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Old 10th August 2009, 00:15   #27
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Geez, looking at the pics. of the interior nearly moved me to tears!! Heaven forbid any classic from ever landing up at a police impound in our country!!

One thing though- can anyone explain the presence of the pull/push knobs on the top of the door sills by the windows, similar to the ones used for locking/unlocking the doors in modern cars? A lot of old Yank cars too did have them but then this car also has the locking handles on the inside. So any idea what the knobs might be for?
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Old 10th August 2009, 12:30   #28
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Quote:
One thing though- can anyone explain the presence of the pull/push knobs on the top of the door sills by the windows, similar to the ones used for locking/unlocking the doors in modern cars?
These are for locking the car from the inside, exactly as in modern cars. The handles were for opening the doors from the inside.

Quote:
I can see TWO winder handles on one of the front doors. Is the small one meant to open the quarter glass ?
Yes, that's right.

Quote:
I am dying to see the final picture of the car after restoration.
Patience, Haritji, patience! Hope I won't disappoint you when I eventually do post them!

Today's posts are of pictures of the engine bay, as found. Luckily, very little was missing from the engine bay. It seemed as if the car was running well till its final destination in the police station compound.

I don't have an answer to my question, should I proceed at the same pace, or speed up the post?
Attached Thumbnails
A lightning quick restoration - '48 Chevy Fleetmaster-zzj_picture-30.jpg  

A lightning quick restoration - '48 Chevy Fleetmaster-zzj_picture-31.jpg  

A lightning quick restoration - '48 Chevy Fleetmaster-zzj_picture-32.jpg  

A lightning quick restoration - '48 Chevy Fleetmaster-zzj_picture-33.jpg  

A lightning quick restoration - '48 Chevy Fleetmaster-zzj_picture-34.jpg  

A lightning quick restoration - '48 Chevy Fleetmaster-zzj_picture-35.jpg  

A lightning quick restoration - '48 Chevy Fleetmaster-zzj_picture-38.jpg  

A lightning quick restoration - '48 Chevy Fleetmaster-zzj_picture-42.jpg  

A lightning quick restoration - '48 Chevy Fleetmaster-zzj_picture-43.jpg  

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Old 10th August 2009, 13:01   #29
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tonrag View Post
I don't have an answer to my question, should I proceed at the same pace, or speed up the post?
I am no MOD. But would suggest you maintain your own pace at your own comfort, as long as we get all the details of the restoration + the interesting stories that go along with such restorations.

Thanks again for your time spend in sharing your experience of restoring this car. We are hooked.
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Old 10th August 2009, 14:03   #30
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Great thread!!! Keep it going at your own pace but please don't crate suspense which is unbearable.

The engine looks like a 6 cylinder, any info on the specs would be great.
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