scott12180

Packard Twelve versus Pierce Twelve

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trimacar    537

The reading I did on Ferrari states the he was impressed early on with the performance of a Packard twin-six of the teens, not by the later V-12's.....and being familiar with Italian style of engineering, I doubt his engine designer paid much attention to other designs....

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edinmass    274

AJ also known as Alsancle has asked me to chime in on this post. As I will always honor any request he makes of me, here it goes. A comparison of the Pierce twelve to the Packard twelve. I could do an hour long video comparing and contrasting the two engines. We could talk design, efficiency, power, aesthetics, longevity, ease of service, the list could go on for quite some length. I have had countless experiance with Pierce V12 cars, worked on more than 35 cars that I can think of, and driven more than 25 of them. I have more than 25,000 miles behind the wheel on them. I have driven no less than ten Packard V12's from 1932 to 1938. Total mileage is in excess of 750 miles, at all speeds and road conditions. I have worked on and serviced several of them, and looked over and handled every major engine component of the Packard twelve. I have a good basic understanding of the Packard engine, including roadside tuning and repair. Stock motor comparison the Pierce has 20 percent more power and a quite a bit more torque. The Packard and Pierce properly tuned are both very smooth and have no signs of vibration at idle all the way to full throttle. It seems they both have similar starting and cold blooded traits. Acceleration and pulling power goes to the Pierce hands down, it's a bigger difference than one would expect, the Packard is adequate for its time, the Pierce will impress you with its surplus power. The Packard engine is much more pleasing to the eye and in finished detail. No argument there. The Packard motor is more "flowing and finished". The Pierce engine is more industrial and heavy equipment in nature. In 1932 a Pierce V-12 ran at The salt flats for 24 hours averaging 117.5 miles per hour, NO other American multi cylinder motor could come close pre war........NONE. They were indestructible as long as they had oil in them. That's why Seagrave used them as a power source for fire truck pumpers. They ran at 80 percent throttle for days on end pumping 1000gpm for years serving as front line equipment into the 1990's. I think it's a fair statement that the Pierce 12 was the most powerful and reliable of the great pre war motors. Yup, a J will make more power but it won't hold together at wide open throttle like a Pierce 12 will, and I know of no other power plant pre war that would. I am sure many people will disagree.....but AJ asked. Both Packard and Pierce built GREAT cars, and Packard in general had better styling overall than Pierce, but when it comes to driving them, Pierce is the tops. I am a Pierce guy........and will always will be, my father was a Pierce fan, but owned many more Packards in the old days and always praised them. I guess the son must rebel and carry a different torch. We could go on for pages about chassis, transmission, fuel, oiling, exhaust, ect....... With both cars having excellent construction and engineering methods. Truth be known both of them are great cars. As an interesting side note, a friend of mine has both world class Packard and Pierce twelves. Recently he purchased a new Packard 12 and after driving it for an hour, he brought it back to me and said it's great, but needs to be tuned and dialed in as it just didn't pull the hills or have the power or acceleration of the Pierce. The Packard was running fine and there was no room for improvement, it just doesn't perform as well......... This coming from a owner who has multiple Packard and Pierce twelves. An unbiased opinion. As to my two cents....... I would include several other cars that have great engines and are often not included in the list of GREAT power plants. Marmon 16 and Bently Speed Six are just the first two off the top of my head......but that's another story!

Edited by edinmass (see edit history)
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alsancle    436

Thanks Ed!   I think that was a very fair write up.  I'm wondering if the Packard engine has the room to be "tweaked' the way you can with the Pierce.  Also, I agree with your "finish" comment as the Packard certainly has a higher level of finish on it while the Pierce has a certain "industrial" look to it.

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CBoz    9

Thank you, Edinmass - few people have such deep experience with these cars.  Too often we hear people share cliches that have been passed down over the years, when they really should say "I don't know."

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58L-Y8    14

Thanks Ed for your assessment of both engines from considerable personal experience, something most of us lack.  To what engineering features and details of the Pierce-Arrow twelve engine do you attribute the more robust character?  Bore/stroke ratio?  Bearing surface size? Oiling and cooling system design? Metallurgy? 

Edited by 58L-Y8 (see edit history)

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alsancle    436

Since Ed was gracious enough to let me drive his 36 Pierce 12 this summer I thought I would bring this back to the top with some comments.   I was really impressed with the power and drivablility.  Just an easy car to handle in general.   Pierce made a couple of small design mistakes with the vent windows (which can cut your fingers off on a sharp turn if open) and the parking brake (which can prevent you from exiting when engaged) but what a great car.  A double lucked out and got to drive a 36 12 Conv too.  This was a fresh restoration and just so easy to handle.

 

As a side note, we were following Ed's Pierce on the NE Caravan which was following a Duesenberg.  There were spots where the Model J was just flying and the Pierce was hanging right with him.

 

I come from a Packard family but I have to say that the more I learn about Pierce the more impressed I am.

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Matt Harwood    985
24 minutes ago, alsancle said:

I come from a Packard family but I have to say that the more I learn about Pierce the more impressed I am.

 

Same here. Now that I've spent a lot of time with this coupe, I'm more and more impressed. Compared to the '34 Packard sedan I sold recently, the Pierce has lighter control efforts and man, it's strong! The Pierce isn't quite as smooth as the Packard, but it's a pleasant mechanical feeling, not a flaw, and I'd say that the Pierce will easily outrun the Packard (although it's coupe vs. sedan). I'm also impressed by how over-built the Pierce is: fully boxed frame, oversized suspension components, giant brakes. No wonder they went out of business, that's just too much time and material for a car.

 

I'm talking eight-cylinder cars, I have no experience with a Pierce 12, but you can count me as a Pierce fan. I wish I could find a way to keep this coupe, I haven't loved a car this much maybe ever.

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trimacar    537

Ed is the expert for sure on Pierce Arrow engines (and a lot of Pierce information in general!).  Every now and then a Pierce turns up that few people know about, but Ed ALWAYS seems to know the cars!

 

I don't have the experience Ed does, but I have been into Pierce and Packard engines of the 30's.  I own one of each, so I can say this as a neutral party, even though being stoned by Packard people may be a result:  the Pierce engine almost makes the Packard engine look effeminate.

 

The Pierce engine is more robustly built, simpler, and overall, just made to last.  It is true that it looks more "industrial" than a Packard engine, I'd never thought of it that way.

 

For example, look at the mid to late 30's.  Pierce engines had hydraulic lifters (an engine improvement pioneered by Pierce, although I believe early Cadillac V-16;s used them too).  The Packard valve lift system wasn't even a simple pushrod style, but rather a  side rocker arm that moved a pushrod, quite a lot of parts added to engine design and all needing adjustment. 

 

I can't speak much to metallurgy, except to say that Packard had metallurgical problems in 1938, for sure, in their block castings.  It's well known in Packard circles that 1938 straight eight blocks are of two varieties, those that have developed cracks, and those that will develop cracks.  These are usually cracks in the top of the block between valve seats.  My 1938 1604 is dead in the water right now, because of this cracking, and my block is not repairable.

 

Someone could probably source the bearing surface areas, that would be an interesting comparison.

 

My opinion is that Pierce emphasized chassis engineering, and styling was a secondary consideration.  Packard emphasized styling, and while their engineering was quite good, it wasn't the driving force behind selling cars.  This statement applies mostly to cars of the 1930's, as before then, styling wasn't as big a consideration to any car company, form followed function.

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edinmass    274

Thank you fellas for the nice words........I hope to live up to them some day! It's been a busy and eventful summer. I have had an opportunity to put about 750 miles on Packard 12's since I first posted here, another 1600 miles on several Pierce 12's, and 1900 miles on two Model J's. All great cars, well sorted and running and performing at their full potential. All three cars have a diffrent feel while driving them. How to pick a favorite? We shal try......

 

If we took the top ten current super models and lined them up on the cat walk in let's say the swim wear competition, and there were three of us judging the ladies........... And I turn to you and say, pick out the best looking of the bunch, the least attractive one of the bunch, and the one that you find overall most appealing taking into consideration all possible aspects of what you find attractive in a lady, the diffrent answers would sure be interesting..........remembering we are trying to pick out the "standouts" of the top ten super models! Would any of us be embarrassed of hesitant of being seen with any of them? No, so I think one can honestly compare the three cars that are the subject of this thread. They are all world class, just with diffrent attributes that make each one special in their own way. Taking any one of these cars........or ladies .......... For a ride will always be a positive experience!

 

Interesting observations of the cars....... Model J, Packard 12, and Pierce 12.

 

 

Overall in the last 24 months I have driven no less than seven Duesenberg's and the most interesting attribute of them is they seem to be the most poorly maintained, poorly running, and suffer from poor workmanship of restoration than any other cars I have ever worked on, and believe me I have worked on a bunch of stuff. You think the owners of these legendary cars would see to it that only the best quailified people would lay their hands on them.......nope, there are lots of collectors who let the cars sit, with old gas, weak batteries, tires with flat spots, exhaust leaks, oil leaks, overheating issues, clutch chatter, wrong parts, ect,ect,ect! When running and sorted properly the J is a GREAT car......and overall lives up to the legend of being the best American car built before WWII, yup it's number one........in style, in power, and performance ..............that is if you like driving a dump truck! Ok, that may be a bit much, but the J is the best.......BUT     It is heavy and a much less refined driving experience. For a short drive of under an hour, it can't be beat. Period. They can be hard to get into and out of, steer heavy, shift hard with their crash box, and burn fuel like it's going out of style, and they tire the driver out pretty quickly. Drive one over two hundred miles in a day,(we did) and when you get out of it, it feels like you got your ass kicked in a school lot fight. You feel,every bump, rut, hill, body sway, vibration, every part of the road gets transferred into your body. Getting out of the car after seven or eight hours driving and you know you accomplished a impressive and special feat, driving the worlds best car, being seen in a true masterpiece of style and engineering, but man, is your ass dragging. We won't even consider purchase cost, or matainance frequency, if money and time were no object, it's the Model J hands down.

 

The Packard 12........ Is our next contestant. I will refer to the Individual Custom Dietrich series from 1932 to 1934 for this exercise, yup, the Big Boy Toy........ As its Coachwork is most similar to what you find on a J. Beautiful styling, the best, hands down in my opinion the most beautiful cars ever designed, from the start of time to today, the Individual Custom Dietrich Packard 12's are the most beautiful design ever placed on four wheels. The chassis and motor are extremely refined and elegant, smooth and detailed, quality and finish are the tops, road manners are wonderful, and it's almost impossible to find any fault with the cars, and any you can name are almost not worth commenting on as they are so insignificant. Increase the Packards horsepower and torque and I would consider them a perfect motorcar. The power is adequate, it is very smooth and predictable,  a bit under powered............ Only when driving in the 80 percentile and above does it lack anything, and almost no one today drives these cars in that range........ But I do, so thus the comment. Overall the golden era of the custom Packard 12 wins the "best overall road car for the luxury car buyer" no questions asked. The Packard is a gem, if you were going to purchase such a machine today, nothing modern can compare at all, not even close, today's Bentley or Rolls just isn't a third the refinement and attention to detail of the golden era of Packard.  And the Packard Individual Custom Dietrich's biggest downfall is a BIG one........PRICE. No working man can afford one today, they are MUCH more expensive than you think.......think again and double it, and then add your last ten years salary to it. Duesenberg's can be bought on the cheap compared to the Individual Custom Dietrich Packard cars. 

 

Time me to take a break, I'll get back to Pierce Arrow's in my next post. Ed

 

Edited by edinmass (see edit history)
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shinyhubcap    4

"My dog is better than your dog"....?

Enjoyed browsing this "thread" about which is better - Pierce or Packard Twelves....

 

Fun reading - no question about it - people love to share their opinions,  Who cares about technical facts if we are having fun...!

 

For example, I   "learned" from one poster ( who claims to be well-versed on the subject..!)  that "Packard V-12's are a bit under-powered".  Another who claims he is "into" these engines tells us Packard V-12's have a "rocker arm that moves a push-rod"...!   And still another tells us "Pierce had giant brakes".....!

 

Yes, of course in addition to the nonsense, I did find some comments I agree completely with.  One of our contributors pointed out the sad story ( he was picking on Dusies, but unfortunately, his remarks are equally valid for so many of the high-value cars you see displayed today).   

 

He noted... sad to see so many high-value big-engine classics reduced to little more than very pretty "costume jewelery".   If they can make it from their trailer out to their assigned spot on the show-field, the owners are satisfied.

 

Back in the real world, there were not separate engineering schools for Pierce Arrow and Packard.  Sorry to have to tell you guys there are not different laws of physics and chemistry for the two makes.

 

Yes, if you are accustomed to a car of the weight of a Buick, the brakes on a heavier Pierce will seem huge.    Basic law of physics; heavier the car, the bigger the brakes. Tells us something about the technical knowledge (  or lack of it...) of the contributor;  dosnt tell us which is the "better" car.   As a side note, I believe Packard bragged its 12 cyl. cars had the largest "swept area" of brake lining;  if there's a dime's worth of difference between the braking capacity of a Pierce or Packard V12 I have not seen that demonstrated.

 

As for power and speed comparisons - again - hate to bother you folks with the laws of chemistry and physics - they wont bend to favor any particular make car.   Simple fact is, given the similarity of design, compression ratio, and displacement, you are going to wind up with similar power.   Well...that is....if both engines have been PROPERLY maintained.

 

Of course there  are variables that can affect performance...weight and "final drive" gearing.  Yes, a stripped down and re-geared Pierce did come close to 120 mph;  in '32 Packard did show their V-12 could beat a golf ball (around 124 mph).  Of course the ones that came out the factory door were geared for the roads of the day - with the exception of the later over-drive equipped Pierce, the big-engine super cars of the pre-war days, again, as delivered with the gear ratios of the day, would be "neck & neck"... lucky to break 90 mph.  No question the over-drive of a later Pierce gave it a tremendous advantage over the Cad., Packard, and Lincoln multi-cyl. cars.

 

Let's be realistic - at modern prestigious car shows, folks pay good money - LOTS of good money, to be entertained by display cars.    The cars that are selected are often brightly painted with paint technology not available during the classic era,  in colors that are not historically correct,  engine parts that were nickel-plated now brightly chrome-plated.  Hardly the way the cars were when placed in service by the original owners.    The owners of these cars have paid a fortune to make them show-worthy;  how they actually run on the open road is of little or no interest to them - certainly not something the show-goers, again, who have paid to be entertained, would know or care about.

 

Phil Hill had a bone-stock Packard V-12.   He loved "driving the cat-nip" out of it around the roads of Southern California.  Of course he knew how to make its motor deliver what it was supposed to do ( yes - it was bone-stock).   A Packard V-12 is "a bit underpowered".....well...depends on who is taking care of it!    I rather doubt if anyone who TRIED to catch Phil when he was out fooling around up Laurel Canyon Blvd. or Coldwater Canyon Blvd....would say Packard 12's are "a bit underpowered" or that they don't handle quite well.....!

 

 

 

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trimacar    537
6 hours ago, shinyhubcap said:

there were not separate engineering schools for Pierce Arrow and Packard.  Sorry to have to tell you guys there are not different laws of physics and chemistry for the two makes.

 

Well, Shiny, you can ignore my comments, but if you want to really know how the cow ate the cabbage, pay attention to Mr. Minnie's thoughts.  He's been around these cars for decades, and knows of what he speaks.

 

As to Engineers, since I am one, I can speak on that comment.  Yes, there ARE different schools of thought on how things should be built, and how they thus function.  You seem to think that all cars are the same from an engineering standpoint, and nothing could be further from the truth.  I've worked on American and foreign cars, and I also worked in the food industry for over 30 years, traveling to Europe and Japan to inspect, test, and buy food processing equipment.  Engineering in every country is different.

 

Americans use heavy castings and big bolts and robust parts.  English use lighter weight components, sometimes make simple things very complicated, and in the case of Rolls Royce, "sew" parts together by using a multitude of bolts.  Italians like monkey motion and chains, and if something here needs to be pushed by something there, then you can bet there'll be rods and levers galore.  Japanese are meticulous in precision, as are the Germans, and both design and build machinery that is focused on function.  The French, well, they're in a world of their own, do genius stuff (witness the Citroen hydraulic suspension, a wonderful system), but one needs to really understand it to work on it.

 

If you don't think Packard and Pierce had different thoughts on how an engine should be built, then you've never looked at one.  Sure, they both have crankshafts and pistons and so on, but they are different.  Suspensions and braking were different, too, with Pierce offering power assisted braking while Packard was not, different steering design, and so forth.

 

I believe it's a very interesting discussion, and I don't know what your experience is in the antique and classic car world, but it seems your negative analysis is a little over the top for this friendly thread.....

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alsancle    436
9 hours ago, shinyhubcap said:

Let's be realistic - at modern prestigious car shows, folks pay good money - LOTS of good money, to be entertained by display cars.    The cars that are selected are often brightly painted with paint technology not available during the classic era,  in colors that are not historically correct,  engine parts that were nickel-plated now brightly chrome-plated.  Hardly the way the cars were when placed in service by the original owners.    The owners of these cars have paid a fortune to make them show-worthy;  how they actually run on the open road is of little or no interest to them - certainly not something the show-goers, again, who have paid to be entertained, would know or care about.
 

 

 

 

 

I'll agree with this for the most part.  But after the show life of many of these cars they are used for touring and 150 miles a day of driving will sort out the good from the bad pretty quickly. 

 

I don't take Ed's comments as downing the Packard so much as explaining the differences (there are a few) between the two approaches.   How many guys out there have really got the chance to drive a V12 hard of either marque?  Ed has driven both in to the ground.  There are very few guys that can say that AND are willing to candidly talk about it.

 

Ed,  have you ever driven one of the later (post 35) bigger Packard 12s?   Possibly unfair to compare the later Pierce (especially the ones you drive with 500cubes) with the earlier 12.

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edinmass    274

AJ, I was keeping my comments compared from the 32 to 35 Packards and Pierce cars. Yes, I have driven the later Packard 12's and they are a good bit of a step up from the earlier cars, but still not caught up to the PA. The late Packard chassis are much better than the earlier Packards and the PA marque to the end. I didn't down the Packard, I rated it better than a PA even before I have commented on the PA cars. I'm off to a wedding in my 1936 V-12 right now, I will finish up the post tonight. 

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trimacar    537

Interesting, and every post seems confrontational....

 

Poor Ed, having to drive all those old cars, what a shame...maybe one day he can afford to get a new car, poor fellow....

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shinyhubcap    4

THREAD TITLE - fellow asks us to discuss the differences, if any, between Pierce and Packard V-12's

 

"interesting...and every post seems to confrontational"

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Yes Trim - I agree with you - I see that -  my apologies -  clearly, there are some folks in here whose status is such that we do not dare disagree with them. 

 

I note they apparently not only  kicked out some guy,  but also deleted his comment for his noting something about larger water passages in the Packard V-12's cooling system ( I spotted a reference to that earlier in this "thread" - wondered what that was about ).

 

For example, as Matt tells us  "the Pierce will easily outrun the Packard".   True, Matt was honest - he stated later in that post   " I have no experience with a PierceTwelve...".   So what ?   - he and some others in here have a greater right to their opinions.  That's the way it is.

 

So - no problem - I apologize - I will try and remember not to disagree in the future.

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shinyhubcap    4
On ‎11‎/‎4‎/‎2015 at 7:44 PM, edinmass said:

.. I think it's a fair statement that the Pierce 12 was the most powerful and reliable of the great pre war motors. ....I would include several other cars that have great engines and are often not included in the list of GREAT power plants. Marmon 16 ...but that's another story!

Yes, I agree in part......... the Marmon V-16 would certainly be another story - the fellow who started this "thread" did not mention that incredible machine !   

 

As a side-note ( and apologies for drifting away from the question that started this particular "thread".....! )   "long long ago and far far away"..... ( Van Nuys, California,..! )   a particularly fine fellow, and fellow CCCA member of the "old days"  (  the late Al Bartz ) had  a incredibly well-equipped  hot rod machine shop - a "side business" of his was re-building Marmon V-16's.

 

He also had a wicked sense of humor....only after he "blew my doors off" one night coming back on the old Coast Highway.... did he invite me to his shop.   I remember shaking my head with disbelief  at the figures,  as he ran up a freshly "tweaked" Marmon V-16 on his dyno.

 

To this day, "bragging rights" amongst  some Marmon 16 owners is that their engine is a "Bartz" engine.  Al  correctly recognized that the Marmon V-16, with its "modern" over-head valve "cross-flow" cylinder heads was way ahead in its potential, to the "flat-heads" like the ones discussed in this "thread"..... with a little "tweaking" by Al  - capable of vastly increased performance.    Here's a suggestion on how to lose a bet - bet someone with a "Bartz" Marmon V-16 that you can stay with him in a drag race....!

 

 

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edinmass    274

In another thread I listed the great pre war motors as

 

Duesenberg J

Pierce 12

Marmon 16

Bently 6.5 Liter

Hispano 6 & 12. The big six.

 

Above average:

Cadillac 16 OHV

Packard 12

DV 32

P III

 

I may have missed a great / or above average engine, but I am writing this in the back of the church while waiting for the Bride &a Groom. Any wedding you go to that's not you own is a good one!?

 

 

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shinyhubcap    4
6 hours ago, edinmass said:

In another thread I listed the great pre war motors as

Duesenberg J

Pierce 12

Marmon 16

Bently 6.5 Liter

Hispano 6 & 12. The big six.  Above average:  Cadillac 16 OHV  Packard 12     DV 32   P III

 

I may have missed a great / or above average engine,.....

 

Ha -   caught you...!      (but I may get both of us into trouble with the "purists" in here for  us etting too far away from the original question in this thread.....!)

 

You did not mention the "flat-head" Cad. V-16  ( as many of our readers know....the very beautiful LOOKING overhead valve Cad. 16 motor was replaced for 1938-1940 production by an entirely different design.  Not nearly as attractive to look at.  The so-called " flat-head" Cad. V-16.

 

It had as much if not more power as the larger displacement, heavier, more complex motor it replaced.  Much improved pressurized cooling system, down-draft carbs, etc.

 

Of particular interest to me is its incredibly short stroke - one of the many reasons why it was so silky smooth, and could rev. like crazy, well beyond that at which our older long-stroke beloveds would be tossing rods thru their crank-cases.....- closest thing to an electric motor-powered car I've ever owned.   Makes your and my favorite V-12's feel like single cylinder two-stroke motorcycles by comparison !

 

Given the low octane fuel of the era,  I am sure you are aware significantly higher compression ratios were not practical for power-plant engineers.  Also,  designers and PR people recognized most of these super-luxury cars would be judged by how they performed at the lower speeds the roads of that era permitted.   So "breathing" and valve timing were set up accordingly.  Given those design criteria,  really wasn't all that much  advantage to more complex and potentially more noisy over-head valves & "cross-flow" heads at the lower rpm ranges these vehicles spent their lives in.

 

My apologies to Trimcar for picking on him - how many of you understand why I made fun of him for his discussing the "pushrod"  in the Packard V-12 valve system....?

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not exactly new  member - various state and one federal bar (and the bar down the street)

not exactly new  member - various "old car crazy" / historical (also hysterical...?  ) interest clubs

proud admirer of a 1943 Edsel pick up truck...chopped and channeled with J.C. Whitney hub-caps and "fuzzies"  dangling from the rear-view mirror.......you know...the bright yellow one everyone says, when they look at your classic...."we had one just like that"   ..."where do you buy gas for that thing"......"is that a fiberglass reproduction"...... (or, looking right at my obviously brand-new Diamondbacks...)....."can you still get tires for those things".........(or my favorite...."did you buy it new..."  ?  )

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C Carl    324

Welcome Shiny' ! Looks like you've been around the block a few times , old man. And I take it some very interesting vehicles have transported you there ! Listen : first off , lest I forget to ask , Bob Smits has been looking for a flathead Cad 16. Since you have had same , can you (or anyone else for that matter) help old Doctor Bob out ? He is at the point he wants to drive his '38. I have a '48 manual trans V8 Cad mill that will have to go to the cause unless an 11th hour 16 pops up. Any leads ? (Oh , hey speaking of V16s , did you ever know that So Cal machinist who had that 3400 cu. in. Duesenberg V16 aero engine prototype sitting in his shop years ago ?)

 

O.K. , now Shiny' , since you are kinda new here these pics are for you. Everyone else has already seen them , but Ed mentioned Speed Six Bentley , so here is a wrecked limousine , rebodied '26 which had just turned a deer into venison a year ago. Therefore the broken headlight , bent numbers plate , and small duct tape patch. About a 40 mph impact. Not bad ! Another big bad six banger is the 1927 S Mercedes Benz. The Indy Duesenberg has a later engine transplant. (No , they are not mine , unfortunately. Things almost worked out , but that is a sad story).

 

You commented  on the Packard tire pressure thread as to how few folks actually get out on the open road and really drive their old cars. I am sure many more would like to , but any number of factors combine to make this difficult or impossible. Myself , I put 2700 miles on my original unrestored '27 Cadillac sedan early this year. Back road lone wolfing it out to , and then down Coast. Hanging in , and cruising around Santa Barbara area. Next through desert back roads to and around 'Vegas. But everyone else has heard that story , too. In any case , I would spend most of whatever is left of my life driving that car if I could. Do you still have a good ancient long distance cruiser ? 

 

Look , all the guys and gals here get to kick it around the virtual bench , or under the virtual lift , or out on the virtual road or field  together. Virtual friends here. Almost everyone has had the pleasure of meeting some of their new friends. Under the circumstances , I just felt drawn to make sure you feel very welcome here. You are quite generous with your long postings , and I am sure we all will enjoy more of your knowledge and anecdotes. This forum is made up by wonderful people. You are one of us ! Again , welcome.  -  Carl 

 

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Edited by C Carl
Simplification (see edit history)

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trimacar    537

The eight cylinder Packard has the monkey motion pushrod system, I thought the 12 did too.  If not, my mistake, and I deserve to be slapped on the wrist with a bent pushrod......or made fun of, your choice, and deservedly so....

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shinyhubcap    4
6 hours ago, trimacar said:

The eight cylinder Packard has the monkey motion pushrod system, I thought the 12 did too.  If not, my mistake, and I deserve to be slapped on the wrist with a bent pushrod......or made fun of, your choice, and deservedly so.......

 

Hi again Trim - you are a true gentleman admitting you made an error. A very human one !

 

C'mon folks....lets be honest - we've all done it - got so wound up in our belief system, so determined to support a theory, that we come up with some silly stuff.  So what  !

 

So long as we are adult enough to be willing to learn - without getting our noses out of joint ( or seeking people get censored or banned because they disagree with us )   we can all benefit.

 

Sure - there are no push-rods in the Packard V-12 valve system.   No hydraulic lifters at all by the way - SOLID lifters  - roller cam followers that lift directly on the valve stems.   Yes - there is a "lash-take-up" using engine oil - hardly a typical hydraulic lifter as we understand the term today.

 

Is it silly to claim that a Pierce 12 can run away from a Packard 12 as another contributor did ?   Given how similar the engine design, bodies, and rear axle ratios were...?

 

Well...of course we all can get a little carried away supporting our favorite "flavor".    Actually, some truth to that to this extent.....given similar bodies (and their final drive/differential gearing was almost identical)  both will be hard-put to break 90 mph.  Probably "neck & neck" getting there given those nasty laws of physics........but with the flick of a lever, the Pierce (some - not all) has one incredible advantage - OVERDRIVE.

 

So yes...once we get much above 85-90 mph,  where the stock-geared competitor's motors are screaming themselves at the limits of their induction,  the over-drive-engaged Pierce 12  takes off leaving the Packard 12 in the dust.

 

Now of course this entire post of mine assumes something that is most likely not accurate in the case of so many "restored" cars today.   As I suggested earlier,  what a shame that so many of these fantastic machines are little more than pretty costume jewelry for display at prestigious auto shows.  Their mechanical restorations often leave them bearing little relationship to how the car performed when it was properly maintained in service.

 

A mid thirties Packard advertisement claimed you could drive a Packard V-12  over 400 miles in a day and arrive relaxed and rested!   We used to call that kind of statement in the advertising world "puffing" ( just think about the roads of that era - sure it could be done....bet it was done.......).    Could there be any doubt that a Pierce V-12 could give the same level of performance?

 

There is much to learn here if we give each other a chance, have a sense of humor like Trim has displayed,  and try to remember one of our purposes in here is to preserve automotive history with as much accuracy as possible..

 

A final "jab" at one of our other contributors in this "thread",  who, in his desire to support his particular "flavor" of classic, said the Packards did not have power brakes..........

 

You get the idea.....!

 

Edited by shinyhubcap
fixed a typo error (see edit history)

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trimacar    537

Well, as far as the power brake discussion goes, Packard vs. Pierce.....the discussion comparing the V-12's between the two companies (or even 8's for that matter) has to have an end date of 1938, by the very nature of the PAMCC going out of business. 

 

My 1938 1604 Super eight does not have power brakes.  Did the 1938 Packard 12 have power brakes?  I don't think so, but correct me if I'm wrong, they were standard hydraulics.

 

Pierce Arrow had mechanically assisted Stewart Warner power brakes much earlier, from 1933 to 1935, and then went to vacuum assisted power brakes until 1938.

 

So, I don't think the statement that Packard did not have power brakes is incorrect, for the time period of this discussion.

 

I've never driven a Packard V-12, so can't compare the two.  I have driven a 1934 Pierce production Silver Arrow V-12 (which I owned in the 1980's and now lives on the west coast), and no other pre-war car I've ever driven had the torque and power of that car,  70 mph was no problem, and even without overdrive, the car hit 100 mph when being driven west by the new owner......  

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