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Old 1st May 2008, 16:07   #46
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Originally Posted by DKG View Post
His dad had upgraded the mechanicals to a Super Eight engine with a left hand drive gearbox and so the car had levers running all across the engine and down to engage the gear shift. Oddly instead of retaining the floor shift I guess the gentleman wanted a column shift and so all the handiwork was done.
Are you retaining the quirky coloumn shift or reverting to floorshift?
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Old 1st May 2008, 17:44   #47
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DKG, This read has been absolutely insane! To bring your car from 'being on the road, pushed around, in tatters" to what you're doing is absolutely fabulous.

I dont know how i missed this thread, but I am thrilled by the sign of a new looking 8 cylinder from what it was before.

You write very well as well, and it's been an absolute pleasure. I would pay to read your story.

Thought of converting it into a book?

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Old 1st May 2008, 21:07   #48
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DKG,

Superb, Awsome,

Bit late on this thread, but more and more i read this thread, it seems to be growing on me.

Happy to see one Vintage coming to life.

And yes i agree with ur view point about restoration.

Keep up the great job.

BTW whats happening on the bodyworks on this car.

Dying to see some pics on them.
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Old 1st May 2008, 22:29   #49
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Brilliant thread, spend the last hour going through the whole thread. Cant wait to read and see more.

Thank you DKG for sharing.

ps: ***** rating
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Old 1st May 2008, 22:39   #50
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Originally Posted by karlosdeville View Post
Are you retaining the quirky coloumn shift or reverting to floorshift?
The gearbox cover originally was cast with the option of either left hand drive or RHD. So while at the gearbox I have changed it to the RHD layout I still need to hook up all the shift linkages on the right side, a bit of a headache. Ideally since the car is a 1938 it should be floor shift (last year for floor shift Packards) but since the drivetrain was upgraded to a 1948 Super Eight (bigger engine) I could retain the column shift. If I can get my hands on a floor shift pan I'd prefer to use that.

Thanks Pavan, the bodywork is complete, that's a full story in itself as I carted the car in an auto trolley to the bodyworkshop as it was in pieces

Last edited by DKG : 1st May 2008 at 22:47.
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Old 2nd May 2008, 17:06   #51
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With both the front and rear suspension installed, a new brakesystem and lines, it was now time to load the engine assembly back into the chassis.

I was excited.

At first I thought four men could help lift the assembly in. Since Packards have a three point mount with the rear pair on the transmission you need to load the engine and transmission together. Forget 4 guys, even 15 couldn’t get their act together to shift the monster. Obviously it requires technique and they were labourers not accustomed to moving machinery.

Finally I ended up using my trolley jack to shift the bench under the chain pulley and managed to manuevre the assembly into the chassis alone!!

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With the engine transmission in, next came the peripherals. The starter, the dynamo, the fuel pump, the distributor, silencer system, drive shaft and various other small items.

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There was one big problem though. I didn’t have a carburetor for this car. It needed a Carter double barreled down draft unit found typically on American cars with big engines.

I was at a loss. Enquiries through friends in Bombay, Delhi, and Madras turned up a zero. Nothing in Hyderabad too. Old city junkyard shops asked "Carter? What is that?". And there was a time 25 years ago I had seen hundreds of them parked on shelves in those very same stores.

Now this was becoming a big problem. I was all ready to start the engine and no carb. This being a larger eight even the carbs off our other Packards wouldn’t suit the manifold. Buying a reconditioned one from the US would be too expensive and a long drawn out affair. I utterly dislike modifications and wanted the real m'coy

Out of the blue, call it a telepathy or whatever, I figured if I were to approach some of the families with similar 47/48 Packards or Caddies chances are some disused old Carter or Stromberg may be lying around on garage shelves. Since a neighbour has a 48 Caddy I thought I’d start with him. I was just not convinced this would work.

I walked over to his house and casually asked if by any chance he had old disused carbs off his car lying around which I could repair and use.

He said ‘ Ahh I think I might have one for you’ and disappeared into his garage only to emerge in seconds saying ‘Here this might be of use to you?’

I was dumbstruck. He was holding just the carb I needed. The manifold pattern matched perfectly. It would require no alteration. And it came off a 348 cu in Caddy, more juice but perfect for my 327. Atleast I wasn't going to throttle the 327!

He most graciously gifted it to me saying ‘Would love to see your car running’ and I don’t think I walked back to my house quicker ever in all my life!

Back at home I took the carb apart wondering why it was sidelined ever as it seemed to be in great shape. I meticulously cleaned out all the passages, there were a few blocked, and reassembled it, hoping it would work. What a delight as I bolted this carb onto the manifold with no alterations required.

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I had made brass spacer washers for brand new Japanese 10mm motorcycle plugs (longer electrode) and next came the wires for the plugs and the radiator was installed with new hoses. Filled up the radiator with water. All the oils had been filled in earlier.

I had retained the six volt system as I have this quirk to not ever want to alter electricals for convenience. Hooked up the battery, filled in some petrol in a can (with some oil in it for positive lubrication) and got ready to fire up the beast.

My heart was pounding in excitement as I turned the big 327 over. It seemed to respond instantly as it coughed a little. The second crank it simply fired to an unbelievably smooth idle. A minor tweak to the air screws and the legendary silk smoothness of the Packard Eights was glaringly apparent.

I was speechless, and so was my father. Others in the family rushed out to the garage to see this momentous occasion. They were simply dumbstruck. The look on their face was sheer bewilderment. This guy really did it!!

I can’t ever express how deeply satisfying that moment was. There I was standing along a Packard chassis which just 5 months ago was a total piece of junk, rusted and jammed. And here she stood silently purring, the valves chattering ever so lightly (left a thousandth gap extra to allow for seating)

Despite all the hardwork that had gone in I still couldn’t believe I pulled it off.

Since I had completely overhauled the gearbox and had done some major work on it I wasn’t sure that would work. So gingerly I sat on the frame easing in the clutch and shifting into first with the small lever off the gearbox. First gear engaged smoothly. As I started to let out the clutch the chassis started to move. Wow!! Now this was something. Damn I had to take it out for a spin right away.

I tied a plastic chair to the frame and held the petrol can with rope.

No amount of descriptive essay would accurately describe the thrill, joy, and deep sense of satisfaction I felt as I moved her out on her own power to emerge from the garage.

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Now you have to understand that I am not a mechanic. I had never ever overhauled anything in my life. And here I was having overhauled a magnificent Packard Eight chassis and I seemed to have done it right!!

It was a crazy sight as I drove the chassis out of our gate onto the road and up the hill with Dad following me in another car.

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I drove it for a kilometer and turned back as this was way too radical. I was ecstatic. This was way too exciting to digest.

I realized I had experienced something very special. To mechanically overhaul a car entirely and actually drive it. Without a doubt this was the ultimate any enthusiast could desire. It was a humbling experience as I sat back to marvel at the potential of human beings and what they can achieve should they desire to attempt new heights.

Now I had a rolling Packard chassis!!

Last edited by DKG : 2nd May 2008 at 17:22.
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Old 2nd May 2008, 17:30   #52
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Congratulation and a salute to you DKG, reading the last post itself gave me goosebumps, so i can only imagine what your feeling would have been.

How is that steering rack held up?? dont see any support since the body works are missing

couldnt help it, again went through the whole post and found a grammatical mistake for my post also

Last edited by Jaggu : 2nd May 2008 at 17:34. Reason: too good
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Old 2nd May 2008, 17:30   #53
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Boy, you've made me green with envy - Packard green!

Quote:
Originally Posted by DKG View Post
I was dumbstruck. He was holding just the carb I needed. The manifold pattern matched perfectly. It would require no alteration. And it came off a 348 cu in Caddy, more juice but perfect for my 327. Atleast I wasn't going to throttle the 327!

He most graciously gifted it to me saying ‘Would love to see your car running’ and I don’t think I walked back to my house quicker ever in all my life!
Its moments like this that make it all worth while isnt it? Just when you think you're out they pull you right back in!
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Old 2nd May 2008, 17:35   #54
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How does that steering rack hold up?? dont see any support since the body works are missing
Glad you noticed. I had to be careful not to weigh down the rod and bounce the steering too much. The steering box though bolts onto the frame with four bolts. Besides its a Packard
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Old 2nd May 2008, 19:09   #55
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I sat on the frame easing in the clutch and shifting into first with the small lever off the gearbox. First gear engaged smoothly. As I started to let out the clutch the chassis started to move. Wow!! Now this was something.

Now I had a rolling Packard chassis!!
This must be one of those miracles that get talked about. Heck, it's not a miracle, it's sheer determination, hard work and love!

Awesome to know that your packard is on the run!

OT: What's the car under the blue sheets?
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Old 2nd May 2008, 20:45   #56
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OT: What's the car under the blue sheets?
Its a 1954 Hillman Minx Mark VII. Posted a picture in the BHP garage
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Old 3rd May 2008, 16:39   #57
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Hi DKG,

Must say that you are a very very Dedicated, Passionate and PROFESSIONAL Restorer.
My hats off to you, buddy.

Your great and informative thread makes good reading for us. This level of restoration can be achieved by very few God Gifted and Talented people like you. And of course to have a place of your own to carry out such work in privacy and peace is and added advantage.
I am really impressed on the detailing in restoration that is carried out on every rusted and aged component of the vehicle. I would have done the same with my projects too, but unfortunately lack the infrastructure here in mumbai to get to this level.
By the way can you tell us the specs of the read primer/epoxy used on the suspension which has been applied to the bare metal after the wire brushing/sandblasting. That shade looks very original for FIAT suspension and I am very keen on procuring it. Earlier DUCO used to sell Red Chassis Primer which I have used extensively but unfortunately is no longer available in the market and am unable to get any closer to that shade.
I must say that you have really given the PACKARD a new lease of Life that you and your future generations will be able to enjoy. Keep it up, Buddy and we will be most anxiously monitoring your resto project to the final outcome.cheers:
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Old 3rd May 2008, 22:07   #58
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DKG,

Nice convertible u are driving man..HA HA..

Great to see the thread dude. Keep it coming.

This is the best resto process that i love to follow.

I'll be closely watching this thread.
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Old 3rd May 2008, 23:11   #59
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Incidentally, hope Iam not posting this in the wrong thread-
DKG or anyone in Hyderabad know a good professional source for fabricating parts in fibreglass?

Iam seriously considering making a new dash for my '62 herlad that is being restored.

The original dash comes in cardboard and is barely hanging on!

Any directions to people dealing with fibreglass fabrications would be appreciated!
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Old 4th May 2008, 02:40   #60
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Finally I ended up using my trolley jack to shift the bench under the chain pulley and managed to manuevre the assembly into the chassis alone!!
Now I had a rolling Packard chassis!!
Lovely job DKG, looking great, alone is best as one can FOCUS with no distractions IMHO. Was there a tube to tidy the HT leads?
Will you be fitting a body? I always found it helps with overall appearance and comfort

Last edited by Julian UK : 4th May 2008 at 02:43.
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