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Pontiac folks, some specific question help please!

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I'm putting the 53 Chieftain back together, ready for the road and came across a couple of questions that I'm unable to answer. I have the parts manual, service and trans manuals so I've done the checking and am still dumbfounded.

1. P8 wire loom mounting is done how? I have two holes through the loom for bolts but there's nothing on the block for mounting. A picture would be great if you have one.

2. This car has a Powerglide tranny. Were powerglides an option in 53 or am I looking at a non-original transmission?

3. If you have a picture or can refer me to a picture of the battery side of the engine compartment, that would be helpful. I'm looking for original color of the steering box and distributor placement and vacuum connection routing.



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<div class="ubbcode-block"><div class="ubbcode-header">Originally Posted By: JDHolmes</div><div class="ubbcode-body">

2. This car has a Powerglide tranny. Were powerglides an option in 53 or am I looking at a non-original transmission?

JD </div></div>

You have a rare car there. In the summer of 1953 the Hydramatic plant in Livonia, Michigan burned to the ground. Thus supplies of Hydramatic transmissions dried up until production could resume. GM purchased the Willow Run Kaiser assembly plant and tooled up for production.

Besides the GM makes that used Hydramatic (Pontiac, Olds & Cadillac), Nash, Hudson, Kaiser, Willys and Lincoln used the unit. Fortunately the fire occured at the end of the model year for many. In the case of Kaiser, production was shifted from Willow Run to the Willys plant in Toledo during the time GM was tooling up the WR plant.

For General Motors, Oldsmobile and Cadillac switched to Buick's Dynaflow and completed the 1953 run. Pontiac, though, switched to Chevy's Powerglide, which was no big deal as the Canadian Chevrolet-based Pontiac used Pontiac's flathead six mated to Powerglide.

Pontiac used unique serial numbers for Powerglide-equipped cars so the authenticity of its installation can be verified -

Chieftain 6 -

A6XP1001-A6XP1031 (31)

F6XP1001-F6XP1024 (24)

K6XP1001-K6XP1066 (66)

L6XP1001-L6XP1063 (63)

P6XP1001-P6XP1384 (384)

C6XP1001-C6CP1050 (50)

W6XP1001-W6XP1048 (48)

Total built - 666

Chieftain 8 -

A8XP1001-A8XP1892 (892)

F8XP1001-F8XP1990 (990)

K8XP1001-K8XP2993 (1,993)

L8XP1001-L8XP2680 (1,680)

P8XP1001-P8XP9950 (8,950)

C8XP1001-C8XP2782 (1,782)

W8XP1001-W8XP2463 (1,463)

Total built - 17,750

Total 6 & 8 - 18,416

Assembly plants were A - Atlanta, F - Framingham, K - Kansas City, P - Pontiac, C - Southgate, W - Wilmington.

No idea how many Chieftain 6 & 8 were built in Canada with Powerglide.


Vancouver, BC

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Bill-W The Canadian Pontiacs were equipped with Chevrolet drivetrains, so the Hydra-Matic fire didn't impact the Canadian models at all.

I presume that Pontiac went with the Powerglide because Buick couldn't produce enough Dynaflow transmissions for Cadillac, Oldsmobile and Pontiac, too.

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Great information. I knew only about the fire, discovered since I posted. I'll check the vin info to see if mine is actually a powerglide car or has an add-on powerglide. I believe it's probably add-on as the water pump is not the one for the trans cooler lines.

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