Matt Harwood

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Matt Harwood last won the day on December 7

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About Matt Harwood

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  • Birthday 02/04/1970

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    http://www.HarwoodMotors.com

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    : Cleveland, Ohio

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  1. Went through my files and found these perfectly awful photos of the aforementioned 1929 Duesenberg dual cowl on which I worked when I was a kid. Not much to identify it beyond my notes on the back that say "1929 Duesenberg J Dual Cowl Phaeton, Hale Farm & Village Car Show, August 1985, owner Sey Rosenblatt." I'm sure I took a photo of the back of the car because I got to install the taillights and help with the trunk rack. Here are two other local Duesenbergs some of you might recognize: Both photos were obviously taken at the same event, but only the phaeton on the bottom has a note indicating, "1931 Duesenberg dual cowl phaeton, Western Reserve Concours, July 13, 1985, owner Alfred Ferrara," which I'm sure I just copied from the info card at the show. I do not know if the sedan was/is also Ferrara's. It is not the big sedan I saw the year before, which I specifically recall having blackwalls (which I HATED as a kid--sorry, AJ). Again, sorry for the dreadful photography. I was experimenting with being a photographer around this time, including setting up my own dark room, but it turns out I was really, really bad at it. Probably best left to others And just since I found the photos and am having a good memory from childhood, here is my all-time favorite car--nothing amazing, just a 1933 Packard Twelve 5P sedan. It's still in the same family's ownership today, and if I could have only one car forever, this would probably be it. Don't know why I love it so much other than I spent a lot of great days in the back seat listening to the big V12 purr. This is when everyone drove their cars and they probably worked pretty well. These photos were taken at two different shows, the aforementioned Western Reserve show on top and Stan Hywet on the bottom, both summer 1985.
  2. Lots of cool designs that I've never seen before, but the '59 Electra is hands-down the winner. Wow!
  3. Matt Harwood

    What might this be ?

    Does it have a bottom on it? My guess is that it's for oil or coolant and the shape is intended to make it easy to pour. If it has a bottom, then it's a container. No bottom, funnel. Can anyone confirm?
  4. Matt Harwood

    Chevrolet bodied 1941 Buick question

    Barney, those fender spears are a source of seemingly endless debate. It appears that if the skirts were factory-installed, as on the 90 Series and possibly on all convertibles, then you would get the little stainless trim piece on the bottom of the rubber stone guard and 24-inch spears and the fenders themselves would probably not have mounting holes punched in them (I have an NOS rear fender for B-series Special/Century/Limited with no mounting holes). If the skirts were dealer-installed or installed at some point after the car was built, then it's anyone's guess. Dealers would typically remove the fender spear, which in most cases was a shorter 21-inch piece, and simply reinstall it on the skirt. They may or may not have installed the little trim piece on the stone guard, I don't know if it was part of the fender skirt package the dealers received. I doubt many filled the mounting holes on the fender, as they would be covered by the skirt.You'll also note the skirts use unique stainless trim on the lower edge which is essentially a continuation of the trim on the rockers, and I have to believe that this trim came with the skirt. There is some debate as to which rear fender spears were used where. Some say that the longer spears were early production but they were prone to breakage, so they switched to the shorter spears. Others claim the long spears were used on factory-installed fender skirts only, since they don't conform to the contours of the fender very well, only the somewhat flatter skirts' radius. Others say it was just completely random, and stories of cars with one size spear on one side and the other size on the opposite side persist although I think it's unlikely. My opinion--and that's all it is--is that the long ones were for the skirts because they don't fit very well on the fenders and the rearmost tips can stand proud of the fender surface, which they don't do on the skirts. It is also likely that in the intervening years, the spears have been mixed and matched so frequently that it's all academic now--who is really going to measure the spears at a show and determine whether they're correct? My '41 Limited has the shorter spears on its skirts, and while I have a set of longer ones, I'm saving those for the Century, on which I have not yet decided whether I want skirts. I'll have to decide before I do bodywork, since the holes in one of the fenders will either have to be filled or drilled (I have one original fender with holes and that NOS fender without any holes). I will say that I think it's very unlikely that the longer spears would fit on the shorter A-Series Special rear fenders, but they should work just fine on the skirts. I also think it's unnecessary to use the longer spears on skirts, particularly since they're difficult to find and expensive when you do find them. Since there's no consensus on which spears should be where, there isn't any right or wrong choice. To make it even more confounding, there are some who say that there are several different skirts, one type to fit B-Series Special/Century/Limited, a different type for Super/Roadmaster, and perhaps even a third type for A-Series Special. I don't know for certain, but I tend to believe that they were all the same and my conversations with '41 Buick expert Doug Seybold seem to confirm that all '41 Buick skirts are the same. He says he has never found a skirt that couldn't be interchanged between cars, but maybe the differences are so subtle that we find it acceptable today. I don't really know. I found this photo of a Model 44C (sorry, I couldn't find any coupes like Grant's 44/44S with skirts) that shows the correct stainless trim piece on the stone guard, proper stainless lower trim, and what appears to be the short 21-inch fender spear. You'll note the rear fender itself is a bit shorter than the other '41 Buicks so the profile of the skirt doesn't match exactly, but it does fit and this is correct. You can see how much less fender is visible behind the skirt on the yellow car below versus the gray Super coupe, above. I'm not sure I love the look on the shorter wheelbase car (I'm not typically a fan of skirts in any regard, so take that with a grain of salt), but they do dress it up and were quite possibly standard equipment on convertibles, depending on who you ask. Does that help or make things horribly confusing? I can't tell anymore. Do whatever looks right to you and you'll be happy, that's always my advice.
  5. I didn't mean you specifically, AJ. There's nevertheless a fairly aggressive group of guys on this forum who take opportunities like this where I've made a mistake to point out that since I know so little about cars, I shouldn't be permitted to make a living in "their" hobby and that I'm everything wrong with today's old car hobby. Whenever I make a mistake, they're inevitably there to kick me for it, which is why I was dismayed to see the return of this error-filled post from 15 years ago. Not you, of course, and I didn't mean to imply otherwise. Thanks for clarifying.
  6. Well I didn't really intend on joining this discussion--I don't have any knowledge of most of these cars and their whereabouts. I've enjoyed the thread, but I really wish a 15-year-old comment of mine hadn't just dropped in, particularly one based on obviously incomplete 30-year-old recollections of a young kid. Knowing how much people love to spike the football on me when I'm wrong, I'm sure this is going to create all kinds of colorful PMs and comments for me to enjoy (note: sarcasm) and feel shitty about. In the summer of 1984, I was 14 years old and worked for a restorer in the employ of Sey (Seymour) Rosenblatt, a collector of some note here in Cleveland. He owned the Duesenberg I mentioned, a black and gold 1929 dual cowl phaeton that they told me had come from Argentina. When I precociously pointed out that 1929 Duesenbergs didn't come with superchargers, I was told that it had been retrofitted with a supercharger sometime after its construction (obviously). The back of the car had already been removed when I started work that summer and I helped reassemble it after some new body panels were made, both rear fenders (I do specifically remember those being cut and welded together) and maybe the rear half of the body. The restorer who owned the shop told me it had been a tow truck in Argentina, but with the benefit of more years in the area and in the hobby, I have subsequently learned two things: one, Sey had tendency to, shall we say, "nudge" stuff, often at speed, and two, the restorer, while insanely talented, was also a genuine crazy person. It is likely that this is the car that AJ describes, J292, and when I saw it, it was being repaired after an accident. I was 13 or 14 years old, very impressionable and very excited, and they probably had plenty of laughs at my expense without me ever realizing it. This is likely one of those times. The car was lovely, but I didn't even know about checking serial numbers at the time, I was only a little kid. I only had the information they gave me. The rest of the time I was scraping grease and paint off rusty parts or sweeping the floor or running the sand blaster, all jobs nobody else wanted. I worked for free just to be there. The same goes for my comments on the Ferrara collection, above. Again, I first met Mr. Ferrara when I was about 12 years old and had a surprisingly lengthy conversation with him about a big sedan he was displaying at, I think, the Ursuline College concours that happened around that time (1982?). I clearly remember being impressed that he took the time to talk to a stupid little kid, but I will also say that I was much more knowledgeable about Duesenbergs than the average 12-year-old kid, too. He showed me kindness and respect, and it was at that show (or maybe two years later) that he also displayed a finished chassis that had a sign board attached to it indicating that it was a display chassis from some auto show in-period. One of the other people in the club pointed out to me that the big black sedan was a car that hadn't been seen since before the war. Is that true? I don't know. Not unlikely that Ferrara could have a car that was out of circulation for 40 years, but I don't know which car it might have been. In 2004, I moved to a new house and a side benefit of that was that Mr. Ferrara lived two doors down. I had the opportunity to reacquaint myself with him and he once stopped by when he saw my father's Model A roadster in my driveway. Several times I was able to visit his collection in the large garage next door to his house, and I saw 6 or 7 Duesenberg Js, including the SSJ, which, of course, is red and silver, not black and red as I mentioned above. There was also an Isotta-Fraschini convertible coupe, a massive Locomobile which I have subsequently sold, an Auburn 851 or 852 speedster, several large Lincolns and Packards, and perhaps a half-dozen other cars. The extent of his Duesenberg collection is known to be 11 or 12 cars, and that seems about right. He had at least twice that many cars total in addition to the Duesenbergs. I enjoyed his friendship for several years while I lived nearby, and while we often talked about things other than cars, he was still enthusiastic about the cars most of all. I was very sad when he passed. I do have a passing acquaintanceship with his son, but for obvious reasons, he isn't terribly interested in letting people poke around the collection or in selling it. I do not know what will become of the collection or what cars are still there. As I said, I have sold one and another dealer has sold at least two of the cars from the collection. I wouldn't be surprised if others were sold privately. The SSJ is still there, as is the Auburn and a large Lincoln sedan, but I am unsure of any others. Much of the content of my post above comes from my recollection of these cars when I was a child in the '80s, and almost all of that knowledge came from what I was able to glean from adults talking at shows. Subsequent to that post, I did spend time with Mr. Ferrara and gathered more specifics, but again, tracking serial numbers and identifying specific cars was not something I was doing given the circumstances. Sorry for the distraction from an otherwise excellent thread on wonderful cars. Please continue and thank you for sharing your knowledge, everyone.
  7. Matt Harwood

    Trying to figure out what this car is

    That poor Oldsmobile must be stored inches away from the salt ocean. Look at how that hood rotted away! I've never seen anything like that, and I live in Cleveland!
  8. Matt Harwood

    Chevrolet bodied 1941 Buick question

    That's actually my website you're quoting. Matt Hinson is correct and maybe I should have been a little more clear on my website. Fisher made all the bodies for GM production cars, and when Buick needed a smaller Special, they used the same body shell as the Chevrolet bodies, which were all made by Fisher. It isn't that Buick took Chevrolet bodies off the Chevrolet assembly line and stuck them on a Buick chassis, they simply told Fisher to make for them the same bodies but with a few modifications for Buick purposes--I must assume that things like punching holes for the unique Buick trim would have been done on the Fisher line rather than by the guys on the Buick assembly line. So technically, yes, it's a Chevrolet body, but only in the sense that Fisher Body was already making this body shell for Chevrolet and Buick asked Fisher to make one for their purposes as well. Does that make sense?
  9. Matt Harwood

    Chevrolet bodied 1941 Buick question

    Although the body shells were the same, the fenders were still Buick fenders. Use Buick fender skirts for your '41 Special model 44. Make sure you look carefully at the skirts when you buy them--note the flat rear edge, the length, and how they echo the shape of the fender itself. A lot of guys try to pass off earlier skirts or generic "teardrop" skirts as '41 Buick skirts, but they are not shaped the same and don't look right. Correct: Incorrect:
  10. Matt Harwood

    Engine number for 1941 Buick sedan

    Engine number starting with a 4 means Special, Series 40. If it was a 2-door sedanette, it was a model 46, 46S, or 46SSE.
  11. Matt Harwood

    Getting the perfect shot ain't easy

    Thanks for all the kind words. Now that I'm looking, I kind of like that first photo without the wreath simply because it seems more natural and I like the snow falling. Maybe I'll work with that one a bit, too. David, I noticed the paper in the windows the moment we pulled it back inside and I smacked myself in the forehead. We were scrambling to take photos quickly that I didn't do much other than aim and shoot. I was afraid the car was going to sink into the mud up to its axles. I'll see if it can be Photoshopped out of there because you're right, it's a bit distracting. Thanks for the feedback everyone!
  12. There was a good bit of snow on the ground and it was coming down hard this morning. I wanted to get a winter shot of an old car in the snow for our holiday cards (rather than buying a stock photo), and I thought today was the perfect opportunity. I thought about using the 1935 Lincoln, but I don't have particularly warm, fuzzy, happy feelings about that car, so I fired up the '29 Cadillac instead. It started as quickly and easily as ever, I gave it a moment to warm up, then drove it out into the snow and parked it in front of our building. My hope was that it would get a nice layer of snow on it, but it was just too warm from sitting indoors and the snow kept melting on the dark paint. By the time it was outside long enough to cool off, the snow had stopped and the sun came out and started melting everything anyway. Dang. Still, we got a few shots that we will use to make a composite image that should look nice on cards and in a holiday E-mail. Downside? The ground still hasn't frozen and was VERY soft. The poor old Cadillac got stuck in the mud and I had to get the guys from the shop to help push it out. No big deal, although Melanie got splattered just as an innocent bystander. I pulled it into the detail shop and washed off the tires and inner fenders. A whole day of work just for one picture, but I hope it'll be worth it. Still more tweaking to do on the final image (this is just my hacky Photoshop work; I'll have my graphic designer make a better final image). Overall I think it turned out pretty well!
  13. Matt Harwood

    Rust Valley Restorers , a new low ?

    If you're a white guy older than 50 and still sporting dreadlocks, you have made a very wrong turn in your life somewhere.
  14. Matt Harwood

    Brand New 1956 Oldsmobile 88 (3607 miles!) *SOLD*

    SOLD to someone who saw it in the flesh and recognized that it is exactly what it appears to be. Collector who only buys 100% original cars sitting on original tires. Thank you!
  15. Matt Harwood

    1936 Imperial Airflow Canadian built car, 3 of 8

    An Imperial Airflow is on my list of cars I intend to own before it's over. I like the '37s best, but I wouldn't complain about any other year.