Joe West

1936 Chrysler Airstream C-8 convertible In downtown building

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Congrats on such a wonderful piece of history!

You have a beautiful car on your hands.

Do your old friend right by taking him for a ride or two once you get the car roadworthy.

I would listen very carefully on those rides as to what he wants to let it go for as well as the history of the car.

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Might be a test, if you offer market he might give it to you, if you nickel and dime him you might end up paying market anyway. 

 

I know what I would do.

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I had a friend receive a car free from someone he had met 10 years earlier. It was a somewhat unique make, and my friend had a couple of them and had spent years discussing the merits of those cars with the older gent. One day the owner just said I want you to have the car and handed him the documents. He was more interested in having someone take care of it than fretting about what it might be worth. Same may be the case here. The old gent just wants to see the car owned and looked after by someone he knows. I would listen to his wife, she is probably a better read on what's up than anyone on this site. And you did say he has many stored elsewhere, so getting this one a new home with a good friend may be all the pleasure he is looking for. 

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I would offer MARKET VALUE and/or to the CHARITY OF HIS CHOICE-

It seems the "right" thing to do

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15 hours ago, Mark McAlpine said:

Congratulations on being honored to be the next caretaker of this beautiful car.  I've never seen an Airstream convertible before.

 

You've obviously been a good friend of the gentleman who owned the car.  I agree with you and the others who commented that I think he will enjoy and appreciate seeing the car brought back to life and that he'll get great pleasure in riding in it again.  I hope you get the car roadworthy in time to share the experience with him.

 

I have a friend who's been the owner of several award-winning Airflows.  I'll direct him to your post--I'm sure he'll enjoy it and, although you probably don't need any assistance, if you have any questions he would be a good resource and happy to help a fellow Airflow owner.

 

Congrats again!

 

Thanks so much!  I would appreciate any leads.... although I can do all of my mechanical work, I am finding that there are some parts I cannot even find... such as the factory 11” brake shoes.  I am so out of network with this car, any and all leads are very much appreciated.

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9 hours ago, Yellowriv said:

Might be a test, if you offer market he might give it to you, if you nickel and dime him you might end up paying market anyway. 

 

I know what I would do.

 

I will offer him full market value plus some... the problem is, he will not even let me talk money now.  He told me he didn’t want to talk about money when I brought it up, and when I spoke to his wife when he was not around, she said just leave money alone until he brings it up.  For now, I will continue restoring it and wait for him to raise the issue.  I will however, check with his wife periodically when he is not around just to see what I should do.

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51 minutes ago, Marty Roth said:

I would offer MARKET VALUE and/or to the CHARITY OF HIS CHOICE-

It seems the "right" thing to do

 

Actually, I will offer more than market value.

 

Of course, the big problem I am running into is exactly what market value is.  The first step is to determine the condition of the car (1-6).  Based on the text describing the different conditions, I would place this car at a 3-4, but I have NEVER tried to determine the value of such a car before.  This one is rare enough that I must wonder if the standard definitions of condition do not apply.

 

I could really use some help in this area.

 

Here is what I know so far:

 

Paint is falling off in chunks.

Tires are bad.

The entire brake system needs to be rebuilt.

The interior is nice.

Almost all of the parts are present.

There is no rust (other than surface rust) anywhere but the bottom of the battery box.

I don’t have any keys so I have no idea if the engine runs.  I suspect at a minimum, it will leak from every point possible due to the age of the seals and the lack of routine maintenance.

 

I will continue to upload pictures so that anyone here can offer guidance on the condition of this car.

 

Joe

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Posted (edited)

Looks like a very nice car that can be made into a good driver. Send it to a major shop to clean up, sort out, and install tires.......you will spend 30k fast. That said, I know what I would pay in that condition. I recommend you have a custom license plate made with his initials on it from your state in a year of manufacture style.......a nice tribute to a generous man. We acutally name out cars.......and sometimes it's the name of the seller.............my 1932 Pierce Coupe was called "Big Al" after the man who owned to for 60 years, and passed away. I bought it from his widow.......the family wanted me to have the car because they knew I would drive it. I was sending photos of it in every state I took it to;  to her and the children. In ten yers it made it to 14 states. They still send me Christmas cards. Here is a photo of "Big Al" crossing the Mississippi River Bridge where Lewis & Clark started their journey.

3BEAFF7A-373F-4490-9A1B-7DF33A656457.jpeg

Edited by edinmass (see edit history)
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As mentioned mine was the 6 in very similar condition.  Not running and needing everything mechanically.  I had to rebuild the engine as well as it was worn out when i got it and wouldn't run.  So pretty much everything you are doing.  Your top is better than mine was. interior similar, Mine was a 6 without OD.  I would think yours based on that would be 25-30G at that time.  Now with the market doing strange things and some older cars like this falling from grace a tad A solid 25G is probably realistic Though the paint is a big issue as there are no cheap paint jobs anymore.  Now if it can be got running and you don't need to rebuild the engine maybe a little more.  Fortunately it's the 8 and not the 6 as the bearings for the 6 are a 3 year affair and not available.  The 8 Though I think goes right up through 1948 With parts interchangability. 

For brakes.  I bought NOS Mopar linings and relined my original shoes myself. 

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What a wonderful story, to go with a great looking car. Not many cars go to chosen caretakers, that must be a great friendship to have all these years. Bob 

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You are going to have to reline the brake shoes you have on the car now, you will not find a rebuilt set ready to bolt on.

Do as Auburnseeker did and find some brake lining material or have a competent shop do the work for you.

You may also need to rebuilt the wheel cylinders and master cylinder you have.

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4 hours ago, Joe West said:

Thanks so much!  I would appreciate any leads.... although I can do all of my mechanical work, I am finding that there are some parts I cannot even find... such as the factory 11” brake shoes.  I am so out of network with this car, any and all leads are very much appreciated.

 

Hello Joe,

 

I sent you a PM. John's a fellow AACA member (and a member of the Airflow Club of America).  He's also very familiar with Airstreams like yours.

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1 hour ago, zepher said:

You are going to have to reline the brake shoes you have on the car now, you will not find a rebuilt set ready to bolt on.

Do as Auburnseeker did and find some brake lining material or have a competent shop do the work for you.

You may also need to rebuilt the wheel cylinders and master cylinder you have.

 

I will search for a place to recline the shoes.  I wonder why six cylinder shoes are plentiful but not eight cylinder.  I would have thought that there would be more eight cylinders on the road, but perhaps there was a large disparity in production numbers.  Ideally, I will try to find a used set and have them relined so that I can always have a spare set.  I am in the process of rebuilding all of the wheel cylinders and the master cylinder now... and replacing all of the non metal brake lines.  My very first step is to make the brake system perfect... then I will think about firing up the engine (as soon as I have a key made... lol).

 

Thanks so much for your recommendations!

 

Joe

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I’d like to thank everyone for their inputs.  I have been a member of many online forums, and this group has set the standard for interacting with a new member... I am so impressed that I joined the AACA today.  What an amazing group of people.  Thank you SO much.

 

Joe

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11 hours ago, Joe West said:

...  "I wonder why six cylinder shoes are plentiful but not eight cylinder.  I would have thought that there would be more eight cylinders on the road, but perhaps there was a large disparity in production numbers."...

 

Joe

Chrysler Airstream Six. Series C-7: 43,471

Chrysler Deluxe Airstream Eight, Series C-8: 9,502

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1 hour ago, 58L-Y8 said:

Chrysler Airstream Six. Series C-7: 43,471

Chrysler Deluxe Airstream Eight, Series C-8: 9,502

 

That certainly explains it.  Thanks for taking the time to look this up.  What (if any) book did you get these numbers from?  I need more books.  🙂

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You are welcome.  The Standard Catalog of American Cars, 1805-1942 by Beverly Rae Kimes and Henry Austin Clark et al, published by Krause Publications.

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Usually the parts like brake linings fit many years and probably other makes of cars from the era.   If you had an old Greylock or similar linings book you would probably have alot more options to chose from.  Also brake linings have been considered a curse to parts vendors over the years so few sell them though there are probably large quantities out there.  If you knew of any really old garages in your town you could even ask if they have any.  Those are usually left behind when guys buy the parts out. 

Also be a little cautious if you find a shop to do them as to what they used.  A friend had a shop through one of our local parts stores do it that does heavy truck and the material they used locked up the wheels whenever they got damp. HE took them out , sent them to Whitepost which did a real nice job and arced them to match the drum,  then never had a problem again.  He said it was really strange as he had never seen that before and he's done alot of this work for years.  The car was a 59 Dodge. 

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Oh what a treasure. Keep us informed with photos of the restoration progress.

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Joe, did you read the pm message I sent you?

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5 hours ago, edinmass said:

Joe, did you read the pm message I sent you?

 

I did.  Thanks so much.  I replied.

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24 minutes ago, Joe West said:

 

I did.  Thanks so much.  I replied.

 

Pay close attention to what edimass has to say.

He's one of the most knowledgeable members on this site.

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Awesome car, but an even BETTER story! Very, very happy for you. 😃

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Posted (edited)

You’ve won the lotto Joe. So happy for you. This is such a rare car. Please keep us in the loop here on your progress and enjoy every minute of it. You win!

When it comes to rebuilding brakes, clutch linings etc, have the shop rebuild your parts so you won’t have fit issues. Be sure of their competence. Anyone will take your money, right?

Edited by Steve9 (see edit history)

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