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ACD Festival


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I've owned my '37 Cord phaeton 812 for about 26 years, and been a member of the Auburn Cord Duesenberg club for about that long. I'd never been to the ACD Festival in Auburn, and decided this was the year to go, the 75th anniversary of the introduction, in 1936, of the Cord 810.

What a wonderful experience. The Festival is not just the ACD meet, but the town also has other events, cruise-ins, car show with other makes, a fly-in at the airport, a lot going on.

Thursday afternoon, drove my Cord down to park on 9th Street, in front of the Auburn Hotel. This is a club tradition, and many of the club member stay in the somewhat run-down, but oh-so-full of character, Auburn Hotel. After visiting and then touring hotel, decided to drive around a bit. Pulled out, and right in front of hotel, car quit running.

What a great place for a Cord to break down!! Immediately had help pushing car back in parking space, and lots of Cord experts discussing problem. I ended up taking mechanical fuel pump apart, and the diaphragm, although intact, was somewhat distorted. Ethanol, perhaps, in this stuff now called gasolene?

I'm not a fan of electric fuel pumps, having had two antique cars with engine fires, and the electric pumps in both cases feeding fire though I thought they were turned off. However, this was a case that I needed one, so off to the local parts store, a major chain. Young man behind the counter, asked him for an electric pump, 6 volt but 12 volt would do. "For what vehicle" he asks. Doesn't matter, I need a generic pump. "Oh, I can't help you unless I know exactly what car, so I can enter in computer." Ok, I say, forget the electric, I need a mechanical fuel pump for a 1937 Cord 812, Lycoming engine, 289, top mounted pump. Oh, and it's a standard, not supercharged. "Huh??"

An older employee comes by, and asks what I'm looking for. He understands, and comes up with a low pressure, 12 volt, pump.

So, I take a fuel filter off the Cord, conveniently located under the car behind the driver door, and install the pump (with a built in filter). Then, take 12 volt battery out of trailer, put it on rear floor board, and run wires to pump. Car runs like a champ.

Saturday is the show in the park, hundreds of ACD cars in attendance. The cars in the background in attached pictures are but a fraction of the cars on display. Most are shiny and new, mine looks like a car you'd find on a used car lot in the early 1950's. That said, many people are appreciative of the condition, and the car gets a lot of attention. The fellow parking cars even put me at the end of one row, "so the public coming in can see before and after." I'll tell you, there were very few "befores" and lots and lots of "afters" there!

At 1 pm, the show breaks up and the cars parade through town, with a very appreciative Auburn populace smiling, waving, and clapping. Then, at the courthouse square where we'll park the cars, we drive in front of a grandstand where they announce car and owner.

What a great event, and kudos to the ACD club members who made it happen. As mentioned, there's a lot going on that's not related to club activities, and I highly recommend everyone try to make this Festival.....

Edited by trimacar (see edit history)
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