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1931 Cadillac V12 coupe value?

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’m getting older now.......and my time is getting shorter, and my effort to fix things is getting much harder. I now wear glasses to read and fix things........makes it much more difficult to make repairs and diagnose problems.

 

 

sounds like someone is on a Geritol diet.............

 

:)

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9 minutes ago, mercer09 said:

 

 

sounds like someone is on a Geritol diet.............

 

:)


 

Not yet! 

 

I have enough iron (titanium) in my body from my surgeons that my new ideal weight is about two pounds more than it should be.
 

PS- By the way.......that comment dates you to being at least as old as I am! (54)

 

 

Edited by edinmass (see edit history)
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Somebody who is around 65 said something to me last year that hit home.   "I'm running out of time to do the projects I wanted to get done".  

 

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On 12/22/2019 at 4:12 PM, alsancle said:

 

You would think that the prewar Rolls would have a bigger following considering you can order almost any mechanical part off the internet in 3 minutes.

They do have a big following, just not in the United States.  I bet http://www.realcar.co.uk/Cars-for-Sale.htm sells 200 plus pre-war cars a year.   And, up until the 80's they were heavily toured with in AACA and ... - near faultless on the road and require no modifications then to tour and still require no modifications today.  I think the issue is that they have always been expensive (even when they were "just" used cars) matched to always being rare and few people having exposure (out of sight out of mind is an expression that comes to mind - I will also tell you my focus changed when I became the only one with an X in the geographic area - not as fun to be the loner).   Also, as the economy in England has improved over the past few years there are plenty that have gone back home - surprising, they also like Springfield cars there too.    In Cincinnati, for eons it was now my group of friends - not too many of the friends left though via age catching up with them.  And, for 30 plus years we had one of the better Rolls-Royce restoration ships here in town via Ned Hermann. 

Edited by John_Mereness (see edit history)

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1 hour ago, alsancle said:

Somebody who is around 65 said something to me last year that hit home.   "I'm running out of time to do the projects I wanted to get done".  

 


Too bad your almost 65 .........OLD man.

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11 hours ago, m-mman said:

 

 

Back to the V12 Cad. I strongly suspect that it was parked FOR A REASON. 

Not necessarily as to a reason, having been around them, they can be a pain when you need fuel from the gasoline tank to the carb after sitting a few months - such alone deters a lot of people as it is a lot of work when such happens.  This 31 could need nothing really nothing in mechanical parts or a few 100 dollars.  The flip side of the coin is it could be a nightmare.  I guess my point is that it gets down to price and MOST non-runners need a wiggle room in price (I say Most is there are some things that it just does not matter - Stuff that has Concours potential you just pay the price and stuff like Model A Ford where parts are easily obtainable).  A 1931 Cadillac does not scare me (Dad and I have had seven of them and countless friends who have and have had them) - that said though equally best to not stumble into if you are not use to them. It appears solid enough that I would say some negotiation and then try your hand at it - if it is for you then fine and if not then hopefully you get it to a better place for the next guy. I will say though it is a car where marginal work results in pennies on the dollar, while excellent work returns on investment - though equally can get you in the hole quick. 

 

By the way, this car reminds me of a story:  The first person on the scene gets hit with the high price (and offends when they negotiate and gets knocked off the plate and/or walks away) and the last person on the scene gets a good price, but the car was probably best in the hands of the first person. 

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I agree with John, maybe it needs nothing......or maybe it needs everything. The question is, do you want to gamble 50k , take it on take it on the chin,  and pour in another 25k? You can do an asshxxe rebuild on an eight for a few grand if you know what your doing, have the time, and do the labor yourself. Usually the 12’s and 16’s I trip over have bad valves or a rod knock. A “cheap” asshxxe rebuild of a exotic is an EASY 35k for a crap job. And 75 for it to be right. Years ago I always looked for cars that were “nice” with a bad engine, as I could usually fix them fast and reasonable as far as money goes. Today, not so much. On top of that,  after all the years of learning, the lessons I have learned for car I am going to KEEP..........buy the best you can when you see it........and figure out how to pay for it later..........good stuff is hard to find.

 

 

Again, every car I buy today I consider my “time left” equation, cars to flip have a different calculus. And buying a car to flip today is a BIG gamble unless you pay almost nothing for it.

 

 

PS- lately MANY cars I have been working on or helping out on have bad block/head/casting issues, just like the car Matt had that can not be mentioned. The good of all this? The sorted, running and driving cars are now “the bargain” of the old car hobby. The projects no longer dig into the finished car for sale stuff...........thus, if your sitting on lots of projects, you need to find dreamers who like cars and have money.......not easy to do.

Edited by edinmass (see edit history)

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1 hour ago, alsancle said:

Somebody who is around 65 said something to me last year that hit home.   "I'm running out of time to do the projects I wanted to get done".  

 

I wish I were in my 60s but still plugging away. It kind of got gas, oil and antifreeze in my blood I guess.

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On 12/22/2019 at 3:05 PM, Johan Boltendal said:

John , as you know, the carb on the V-8 looks simple,  but is a precision instrument, as is the distributor , both set well they will hardly give any trouble. 😉

I never had problems getting the cars to run well and we put 1000's of miles on the two favorites - the problem usually came about 5:00 on a Sunday afternoon on the way home from a AACA tour and the carb suffered so much from "heat sink" being in the valley that there was just nothing left often than to pull car off road for to hours and let everything cool down.  Could I maybe have improved with an electric pump - yes, but that is a whole problem in itself given carb design.  Could I put a downdraft carb on it - yes, but not proper and again a whole problem in itself.  What was our solution:  My parents sold all the 1931's and started driving my 1941 Cadillac 60 Special Fleetwood, as well as using their 1930 Franklin more. 

Edited by John_Mereness (see edit history)

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47 minutes ago, John_Mereness said:

I never had problems getting the cars to run well and we put 1000's of miles on the two favorites - the problem usually came about 5:00 on a Sunday afternoon on the way home from a AACA tour and the carb suffered so much from "heat sink" being in the valley that there was just nothing left often than to pull car off road for to hours and let everything cool down.  Could I maybe have improved with an electric pump - yes, but that is a whole problem in itself given carb design.  Could I put a downdraft carb on it - yes, but not proper and again a whole problem in itself.  What was our solution:  My parents sold all the 1931's and started driving my 1941 Cadillac 60 Special Fleetwood, as well as using their 1930 Franklin more. 

I find that the Johnston carb yes can be very finicky on the Cadillac V8. I rebuilt my own 1930  making one change I learnt from an old V8 & V12 Cadillac friend who is no longer with us.  I also have an electric fuel pump  (3/4 lb pressure )and have been touring in events on both sides of the boarder. My car runs great with high speed  gears never having  to pull over for any engine problems past 8 years whether on tour in the hotter Carolina's the mountains in Pa.  or here in Canada.

 I rebuilt a 1930 carb in the parking lot on the New Hampshire Glidden tour for another fellow that had flooding problems and he used a vacuum tank. As far as I know he had no problems after that but a great fellow who is also no longer with us.  Seems the older you get the fewer friends you have but not in a good way. 

Edited by Joe in Canada (see edit history)

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49 minutes ago, John_Mereness said:

I never had problems getting the cars to run well and we put 1000's of miles on the two favorites - the problem usually came about 5:00 on a Sunday afternoon on the way home from a AACA tour and the carb suffered so much from "heat sink" being in the valley that there was just nothing left often than to pull car off road for to hours and let everything cool down.  Could I maybe have improved with an electric pump - yes, but that is a whole problem in itself given carb design.  Could I put a downdraft carb on it - yes, but not proper and again a whole problem in itself.  What was our solution:  My parents sold all the 1931's and started driving my 1941 Cadillac 60 Special Fleetwood, as well as using their 1930 Franklin more. 

 

Remarkably enough, my '29 Cadillac has been running for 10 years on an electric pump without issues. Everyone says it can't be done, but the thing has been bulletproof reliable and never missed a beat. I have a vacuum tank on the shelf and even devised a way to incorporate both systems, but the thing runs so well I'm unwilling to mess with it. It does have a rather heavy-duty pressure regulator on it, not one of those generic dial-type units, and I just re-plumbed it with 5/16" hard line, but the rest works just fine. Once once have I suffered any vapor-lock type illness with it and it was inexplicable other than it was a hot day, I was in traffic, and I missed every single red light along the way so it kept getting hotter and hotter. But that was the only time in perhaps 10,000 miles of driving that it has ever hiccuped due to a fuel-related issue. No, it's not "right" but my inclination with something like this is that if it's working, don't mess with it. It's the same reason why I'm loathe to disassemble the cooling system on my '41 even though the water pump bearing is a little noisy and the radiator is seeping at the top tank--the sucker runs ice cold no matter what and I don't want to risk losing that.

 

Right is always right, but it pains me a great deal to say that sometimes I still think it's better to leave well enough alone.

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22 hours ago, Joe in Canada said:

I find that the Johnston carb yes can be very finicky on the Cadillac V8. I rebuilt my own 1930  making one change I learnt from an old V8 & V12 Cadillac friend who is no longer with us.  I also have an electric fuel pump  (3/4 lb pressure )and have been touring in events on both sides of the boarder. My car runs great with high speed  gears never having  to pull over for any engine problems past 8 years whether on tour in the hotter Carolina's the mountains in Pa.  or here in Canada.

 I rebuilt a 1930 carb in the parking lot on the New Hampshire Glidden tour for another fellow that had flooding problems and he used a vacuum tank. As far as I know he had no problems after that but a great fellow who is also no longer with us.  Seems the older you get the fewer friends you have but not in a good way. 

Most people are not driving their 31's (and related years) to and from events and for hours upon hours straight - the bulk of our cars are road driven 100% of the time (aka no trailers), albeit during shake down and restoration I have seen plenty of trailer time matched to a few things that we restored that we did not enjoy driving. 

Edited by John_Mereness (see edit history)

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21 minutes ago, Matt Harwood said:

 

Remarkably enough, my '29 Cadillac has been running for 10 years on an electric pump without issues. Everyone says it can't be done, but the thing has been bulletproof reliable and never missed a beat. I have a vacuum tank on the shelf and even devised a way to incorporate both systems, but the thing runs so well I'm unwilling to mess with it. It does have a rather heavy-duty pressure regulator on it, not one of those generic dial-type units, and I just re-plumbed it with 5/16" hard line, but the rest works just fine. Once once have I suffered any vapor-lock type illness with it and it was inexplicable other than it was a hot day, I was in traffic, and I missed every single red light along the way so it kept getting hotter and hotter. But that was the only time in perhaps 10,000 miles of driving that it has ever hiccuped due to a fuel-related issue. No, it's not "right" but my inclination with something like this is that if it's working, don't mess with it. It's the same reason why I'm loathe to disassemble the cooling system on my '41 even though the water pump bearing is a little noisy and the radiator is seeping at the top tank--the sucker runs ice cold no matter what and I don't want to risk losing that.

 

Right is always right, but it pains me a great deal to say that sometimes I still think it's better to leave well enough alone.

That is what I would probably do today via electric pump (and perhaps block off the pre-heater function), though at the time, post engine fire and ..., it was easier to just move on.  The 41 Cadillac 60 Special had 17K miles on it in 1979, and when sold in 2015 or so had 97,500 miles on it - great tour car (it did have a lot of time spent on it mechanically) and only saw the side of the road 2 x times, with once running out of gasoline and another with an Optima battery melt down. The Franklin periodically had an issue or two, though made it home every time. And the 35 Auburn's have always made it home too.  Plus, all the other Cadillac's,  Buick's, Rolls-Royce's, and .... made it home from every show/tour.   Sidenote:  All the Packard's made it home as well, dad just cusses and swears that they engineered by"bulk" and it is easier to not have one anymore (he seems happy with ACD products and British Sports Cars, though there is probably a 57 Ford Thunderbird or ... in his future for easy driving). 

Edited by John_Mereness (see edit history)
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6 minutes ago, John_Mereness said:

That is what I would probably do today via electric pump, though at the time, post engine fire and ..., it was easier to just move on.  The 41 60 Special had 17K miles on it in 1979, and when sold in 2015 or so had 97,500 miles on it - great tour car (it did have a lot of time spent on it mechanically) and only saw the side of the road 2 x times, with once running out of gasoline and another with an Optima battery melt down. The Franklin periodically had an issue or two, though made it home every time. And, the 35 Auburn's have always made it home too.  Plus, all the other Cadillac's,  Buick's, Rolls-Royce's, and .... made it home from every show/tour.   Sidenote:  All the Packard's made it home as well, dad just cusses and swears that they engineered by"bulk" and it is easier to not have one anymore (he seems happy with ACD products and British Sports Cars, though there is probably a 57 Ford Thunderbird or ... in his future for easy driving). 

 

You know to steer him away from the Thunderbird, right? Awful cars. Just terrible. I've stopped selling them simply because we get more complaints and demands for refunds or repairs on those than any other single car. I'm sorry to the guys who love them, but I can't imagine a worse car.

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22 minutes ago, Matt Harwood said:

 

Remarkably enough, my '29 Cadillac has been running for 10 years on an electric pump without issues. Everyone says it can't be done, but the thing has been bulletproof reliable and never missed a beat. I have a vacuum tank on the shelf and even devised a way to incorporate both systems, but the thing runs so well I'm unwilling to mess with it. It does have a rather heavy-duty pressure regulator on it, not one of those generic dial-type units, and I just re-plumbed it with 5/16" hard line, but the rest works just fine. Once once have I suffered any vapor-lock type illness with it and it was inexplicable other than it was a hot day, I was in traffic, and I missed every single red light along the way so it kept getting hotter and hotter. But that was the only time in perhaps 10,000 miles of driving that it has ever hiccuped due to a fuel-related issue. No, it's not "right" but my inclination with something like this is that if it's working, don't mess with it. It's the same reason why I'm loathe to disassemble the cooling system on my '41 even though the water pump bearing is a little noisy and the radiator is seeping at the top tank--the sucker runs ice cold no matter what and I don't want to risk losing that.

 

Right is always right, but it pains me a great deal to say that sometimes I still think it's better to leave well enough alone.

Dad and I have a rule:  Unless really broken prohibiting driving or possibly unsafe, we do not touch anything pre-tour or show.  I do not recall who preached that to the both of us, but it works well. 

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1 minute ago, Matt Harwood said:

 

You know to steer him away from the Thunderbird, right? Awful cars. Just terrible. I've stopped selling them simply because we get more complaints and demands for refunds or repairs on those than any other single car. I'm sorry to the guys who love them, but I can't imagine a worse car.

I am somewhat aware - I realize I will have to spend a lot of time with one if we go that route for him. 

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To Ed and John, I feel for your age related restrictions.  Follow Clint Eastwood's advice.  "Don't Let The Old Man In".  I will be 80 in February and still work on cars every day, just slowly!!

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3 hours ago, Robert G. Smits said:

To Ed and John, I feel for your age related restrictions.  Follow Clint Eastwood's advice.  "Don't Let The Old Man In".  I will be 80 in February and still work on cars every day, just slowly!!

 

Those two are barely over 50.   Actually,  John,  are you 50 yet?

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Gentleman......it’s not the years.......it’s the mileage!

 

 

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70 is the new 50. That said I have gone from the slowest mechanic imaginal to 2x slower. Took me over a week to change a thermostat. Spending more time and effort figuring out and accessorizing (first TV I've had that needs a Bluetooth keyboard and mouse) a 75" "Android" (cyber Monday special that sold out in minutes) 4K TV than any recent car.  Is like being in a theater, seeing more facial defects than ever wanted to...

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7 hours ago, Matt Harwood said:

.........the water pump bearing is a little noisy .....................sometimes I still think it's better to leave well enough alone.

 

It has been my experience that noisy water pumps are not well enough to be let alone. Maybe a necessary field repair I had to make before most o' youse in yer 50s were born, learned me up too well. My first long distance road trip in my own car which developed a serious leak as a pump packing failed just short of 1000 miles out. On the spot fix limited to assets on hand. Yarn and chewing gum were the only materials I could find. Continued outbound, and returned home, still dry ! After that "trial run", I figured I could leave well enough alone. And it did not let me down.

 

Even if my water pumps are not calling out for timely help, I check them periodically anyway. Always try to wiggle the water pump fans when I look at a car I am buying, or about to start a long trip. Saved my tail feathers back in the late '60s. Back then, in more innocent times, there were opportunities to do delivery driving. Little Danish Dolly and I had flown from Europe to Nassau on a cheap flight on  International Air Bahamas airline. Then got a delivery '65 Cadillac out of Miami to Chicago. Checked the H2O pump, and it was loose. Good thing I checked and repaired prior to departure. Back then, things could be very different than now. "Blondie" and I were denied service at a necessary hamburger stop. Waitress informed us they didn't "serve nobody but truckers. Hi-uh-puhs nyethuh !" Real good thing the 'pump had been replaced. Might have been awkward at some place that didn't work on nothin' but no trucks. Ca-di-laks nyethuh.

 

I'll tell you. That li'l hamburger addict I was traveling with finally had her mind blown. In the new Olds we got out of Chi' town to Seattle, by the time we got to Wyoming, she was absolutely astonished that we were still driving. Corner to corner USA did not compute to the mind of a girl from such a tiny country as Denmark.

 

Lesson here is that it is always better to fix a water pump a little early, than just a leeeeeTL bit too late ! 

 

And effin' you young'uns in yer 50s think you are old and slow, just think how 70, 80, and 90 will be. And yes, I do know there are a few exceptions. I hope some of you will be. On the average, it takes me a whole 7 day week to do what I could do in my prime in a day. Some days I worked all day doing what would literally kill me in 10 or 15 minutes today.

 

MERRY CHRISTMAS, Matt and y'all ! And for a happier New Year, please wear this shoe if it fits : If you are experiencing anguish and stress, toiling in this trying life, please treat YOURSELF as you would have OTHERS treat YOU.  

                                                                                           All the VERY BEST,   -   Cadillac Carl 

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2 hours ago, C Carl said:

 

It has been my experience that noisy water pumps are not well enough to be let alone. Maybe a necessary field repair I had to make before most o' youse in yer 50s were born, learned me up too well. My first long distance road trip in my own car which developed a serious leak as a pump packing failed just short of 1000 miles out. On the spot fix limited to assets on hand. Yarn and chewing gum (*) were the only materials I could find. Continued outbound, and returned home, still dry ! After that "trial run", I figured I could leave well enough alone. And it did not let me down.

 

Even if my water pumps are not calling out for timely help, I check them periodically anyway. Always try to wiggle the water pump fans when I look at a car I am buying, or about to start a long trip. Saved my tail feathers back in the late '60s. Back then, in more innocent times, there were opportunities to do delivery driving. Little Danish Dolly and I had flown from Europe to Nassau on a cheap flight on  International Air Bahamas airline. Then got a delivery '65 Cadillac out of Miami to Chicago. Checked the H2O pump, and it was loose. Good thing I checked and repaired prior to departure. Back then, things could be very different than now. "Blondie" and I were denied service at a necessary hamburger stop. Waitress informed us they didn't "serve nobody but truckers. Hi-uh-puhs nyethuh !" Real good thing the 'pump had been replaced. Might have been awkward at some place that didn't work on nothin' but no trucks. Ca-di-laks nyethuh.

 

I'll tell you. That li'l hamburger addict I was traveling with finally had her mind blown. In the new Olds we got out of Chi' town to Seattle, by the time we got to Wyoming, she was absolutely astonished that we were still driving. Corner to corner USA did not compute to the mind of a girl from such a tiny country as Denmark.

 

Lesson here is that it is always better to fix a water pump a little early, than just a leeeeeTL bit too late ! 

 

And effin' you young'uns in yer 50s think you are old and slow, just think how 70, 80, and 90 will be. And yes, I do know there are a few exceptions. I hope some of you will be. On the average, it takes me a whole 7 day week to do what I could do in my prime in a day. Some days I worked all day doing what would literally kill me in 10 or 15 minutes today.

 

MERRY CHRISTMAS, Matt and y'all ! And for a happier New Year, please wear this shoe if it fits : If you are experiencing anguish and stress, toiling in this trying life, please treat YOURSELF as you would have OTHERS treat YOU.  

                                                                                           All the VERY BEST,   -   Cadillac Carl 

 

(*) : hmmmmmmmmmmm............. Thinking, trying to remember so long ago, there just might have been a little Vaseline in the mix - not that it matters, I am not making any recommendations here 😏.   -   CC 

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70 is the new 50.

 

yeah, sure. keep telling yourself that.................. wish I could believe it..............!

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I sure wish I used a hammer to install hubcaps back in the old days instead on my hands! 

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