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1933 Essex Terraplane 8 cyl (2) I.D.'s ?

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Currently we are prepping 2 1933 Essex 8 Terraplane coupes for sale .

These are from an estate with one being an older amature restoration . Great running and looking rust free car . The second is a complete but partially disassembled car . It is rust free with original interior and cleaned and primed body and frame . Engine and drive train are cleaned and painted looking like new but with no history .

One mystery is that the ID plates have been removed and misplaced . So , although they are both titled , I believe I will need a corresponding identification on the car .

So , one big question is are there any other places that the ID number might appear such as the frame . Currently I do have the 8 cylinder engine ID #s . These are 26936 and 12720 .

Any info or suggestions would be greatly appreciated . I will be happy to answer any questions regarding these cars through this forum .

Thank you ,


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Later in the decade Hudson stamped the serial number on the axle housing, on the passenger's side at the top of the housing. Also, they would stamp the number on the frame, at the passenger's side, in the vicinity of where the front axle passes beneath it. I cannot recall whether it's on the top of the outside face of the frame. So, you might try looking in those places.

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Look on the front face of the front axle just outside of the spring mounting and you should see the Car No. Also the same number should be stamped above and just behind the right front springs rear hanger on the upper outer face of the frame. As mentioned it can also appear on top of one of the tubes of the rear axle.

State laws are going to vary as to inspection requirements to get these cars legally transferred. Some states will require a bonded title since the VIN plate is missing.

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Did you mean 6 cyl? The numbers you give are for 6 cylinder cars only for 1933 Essex Terraplane; actually the one number would indicate a 1932 Essex Terraplane Pacemaker Six.

Engine number 26936 indicates the car is a 1933 Essex Terraplane 6 cylinder car, and could be either K Standard Six, KU Special Six, or KU Deluxe Six. Serial number range is 20501-47052 (25727 and up for the Deluxe). The hoods for this car have louvers, not the 4 doors of the 8 cyl cars.

Serial number 12720 indicates a 1932 Essex Terraplane 6 cyl car, K- Pacemaker, serial number range 5000-20500. A completely different car than the 1933 version, with some similarities. Most noticeable, the fenders will not be skirted on this car as on the other 33. The grille is also different. The wheelbase on the 32 is 106", while your 33 could be 106" or more likely 113".

BTW, both of those engine numbers could correspond to a 1930 Hudson Eight engine. Those engines had dual heads and was the first year that Hudson offered the 8 cyl engine. If that's the case, you have older engines transplanted into the newer cars -- I'm not sure how well or likely it is that those would fit without some major modifications. The 1933 Essex Terraplane engine used the newer technology design compared to the 33 Hudson (which was a carryover of the 1930 original design). The Terraplane 8 style engines were adapted for the 1934 Hudsons (only eights for Hudson in 34, while Terraplanes only came with a 6 cyl engine). 1933 Terraplane engines were 193 cubic inches displacement, while the Hudson engine was 254 cubic inches.

Some pictures would definitely help. Most states used the engine number as the number for the car title, so since the engines have been swapped and the cowl tags are missing, you will have a more difficult time with titles for these cars. I just have had the same situation with my 1933 Hudson. 1933 was also the only year that the Terraplane had an 8 cyl engine, and the only year that they used the griffin hood ornament if that helps (models KT Eight and KT Eight Deluxe). A correct 8 cyl car would have the 4 hood doors, not louvers. I have not yet found any numbers stamped on the frame of my Hudson, but then it isn't yet all taken apart. The cowl tag and engine numbers were correct for my car and did match the CA title, thankfully!

Correct serial numbers for KT Eights are: 15001-28620 (engine) and 65001-78250 (KT Eight); 73463-78250 (KT Eight Deluxe)

Hope this helps!

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Here are some pictures. 1933 Essex Terraplane Eight Sedan showing skirted fenders and 4 hood louvers (couple missing). Car recently for sale in CA. Next picture is a 1933 ET Eight convertible coupe at recent national meet in CA. Everything correct here except for possible the horns which would have been round and not triangular. The next is a 1933 ET Eight sedan, completely stock (missing horns) and is a sedan. Also at the recent national meet, and was I believe for sale. The last picture is a 1932 Essex Terraplane Pacemaker Six (only model available). You can see the hood on the six is louvered, and the fenders are of the older type lacking the skirting design. The hood ornament is also different.





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  • 8 months later...

You might want to list that as a separate discussion, both here in the "Hudson" category, as well as at the For Sale / Wanted category. I'm afraid it won't get much notice buried deep in this discussion about serial number plates!

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