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Who likes Cadillacs with Tailfins?


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Very nice.  What are those front bumper protrusions officially referred to as?  I always wondered if that was ever commented on in their marketing or advertising. I have to think that Cadillac had a male dominated design staff at the time.

Edited by Stude Light (see edit history)
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22 minutes ago, Stude Light said:

Very nice.  What are those front bumper protrusions officially referred to as?  I always wondered if that was ever commented on in their marketing or advertising. I have to think that Cadillac had a male dominated design staff at the time.

 

They are propellers. These Cadillacs are fighter aircraft in theory. When Frank Hershey penned the 1948 design he was looking at a Lockheed P-38 Lighting. When you look at the plane you can see the bumpers, side scoops and tailfins.

38Full.2.jpg

csm_p38-frankreich-005_b70706c04f.jpg

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Some look good and some look bad.

My favorite;

CADILLAC DEVILLE - 59px Image #9

That roof will appear on 58 Chevrolet and Pontiac.

This Cadillac was designed specifically NOT to have skirts

 

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While I do love this model, I think the 59 was the most beautiful Cadillac ever made. I also love the 66 Coup de ville.    Stude light, are you referring to the Dagmars?

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1 hour ago, Stude Light said:

Very nice.  What are those front bumper protrusions officially referred to as?  I always wondered if that was ever commented on in their marketing or advertising. I have to think that Cadillac had a male dominated design staff at the time.

Dagmars

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Who likes Cadillacs with Tailfins? Everyone.

 

I don't know if the front bumper protrusions had an official name but here is an article on their progression.

 

https://www.curbsideclassic.com/design-3/design-history-cadillacs-dagmars-an-intimate-look-at-their-origins-development-and-namesake/

 

 

Edited by Benoit
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I love the early fined Cadlllacs.  My father had a black 47 convertible (Np fins) and then a 48 convertible with fins that was green when he bought it and painted yellow before I got my drivers license.  My mothers car was a 56 Fleetwood.  On my 16th birthday, my dad gave me a note to my school "to let me out in the afternoon to accompany him on a legal matter".  I went with him to take my drivers test in his new VW, then went home and got the Caddy conv. to go back to school to pick up my girlfriend.  A few years later he had a lavender 56 Coupe DeVille and then a green 58 Eldorado Biaritz Conv. with gold trim and wheels.  None of them were new, but boy were they AWESOME!

 

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The twin booms with rudders on the P-38 are the twin rear pontoon and taillight fins on the 48-49 Cadillac;

38Full.2.jpg

1948 Cadillac Series 62 Club Coupe | U72 | Phoenix • Glendale 2019

 

The intakes for the engine oil coolers is beneath the prop, and can be seen in the 1949-50 Oldsmobile under the headlamps;

1949 Oldsmobile Series 76 | GAA Classic Cars

 

 

 

 

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4 hours later I answer,

 

Dagmars. 

 

Late to the party as usual......😁

 

For those who do not know the reference, Google the name!😉

 

59 is good for Cadillacs and Buicks!

 

Here is one I painted over 20 years ago. She, the owner, parked it recently while shopping and labeled this picture "To Each His Own".

59 Caddy.jpg

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For whatever reason the 59 fins never "did it" for me. Too over the top. The toned down 60 fins were exponentially better. I do understand the 59's appeal though.

 

I also like the 59 Buick better than the 60. I wouldn't want to polish that grille though!

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2 hours ago, rocketraider said:

For whatever reason the 59 fins never "did it" for me. Too over the top. The toned down 60 fins were exponentially better. I do understand the 59's appeal though.

 

I also like the 59 Buick better than the 60. I wouldn't want to polish that grille though!

 

I am with you on that with the Caddy's, but think all of the GM cars in 1960 were better looking then the 1959's 

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Funny how tastes change. Sometime in the early-mid 1980's I answered the shop phone and it was a guy wanting to give away a '59 Cadillac Coupe in drivable condition. I didn't want it so I yelled to the guys in the shop "Anyone want a free drivable '59 Cadillac Coupe?".  Crickets. 

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My oldest brother 'inherited' my grandmothers Plymouth when she died. This was in 1970, the car was mid to late 50's. I was very young but remember how crazy big the tail fins were, that car was beyond ugly (for 1970). Now I would love to have something like that.

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11 hours ago, rocketraider said:

For whatever reason the 59 fins never "did it" for me. Too over the top. The toned down 60 fins were exponentially better. I do understand the 59's appeal though.

 

I also like the 59 Buick better than the 60. I wouldn't want to polish that grille though!

You are a man with good taste! 
 

 

 

BFA63823-FC94-4C34-9B1D-0487DF12BFA7.jpeg

80D9EB2F-5769-4F51-AF72-F07906CFB419.jpeg

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16 hours ago, Brass is Best said:

 

They are propellers. These Cadillacs are fighter aircraft in theory. When Frank Hershey penned the 1948 design he was looking at a Lockheed P-38 Lighting. When you look at the plane you can see the bumpers, side scoops and tailfins.

38Full.2.jpg

csm_p38-frankreich-005_b70706c04f.jpg

As noted in Hemmings, substantiating the above with at least a second vote. 

 

https://www.hemmings.com/stories/article/dagmar-bumpers

 

There are many terms for cars or car parts these days that weren't prevalent at the time the cars were in use.  Dagmars being one of them.  The term "e brake" is current slang for instance.  Other terms like "standard" when referring to a transmission was a functional description of a car without the purchase of an automatic transmission.  Other words just change there meaning all together, but now we really deviate from the OP.

 

I love the mid 50's Cadillacs and the modest fins like those shown above.  My granddad had one years ago and it always appeared to be a giant out-of-reach luxury compared to my dads cars.  I imagine the ride is amazingly comfortable.

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"e brake" is an electronic parking brake which did not exist in the last century and is annoying today.

 

P-38 was one of Kelly's best. It is a major ego boost when you no longer have to explain a design decision to those who do not understand (particularly when including a part that does not exist...yet). Buick ventiports are from the P-40 exhaust ports.

 

Once put a 61 Caddy 'vert sideways across a bridge when the brakes went away, does that count. Allante is my fourth owned caddy

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10 hours ago, John348 said:

 

I am with you on that with the Caddy's, but think all of the GM cars in 1960 were better looking then the 1959's 

I'm the same except for the Buick. Rounded corners didn't "work" as well with the delta-wing styling and that stamped sweepspear at the rear has always jarred me. 59 Pontiac quarterpanel bright trim did too. Didn't work with the sheetmetal and especially the rear bumper lines. Looked afterthought-ish.

 

Now my finny Cadillac dream is a 1962. One of those years that the styling told the world you had arrived. Chevrolet's blatant 1970 ripoff of that grille didn't work for me either. But boy do I dig a 1969 big Chevy.

 

Not that I'm opinionated or anything...😁  Class is class, and gauche is more often than not fugly.

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I had an uncle that liked his cars.

He had one of those early Jaguar sports cars that I remember as a kid. Probably a late forties or early fifties I loved riding that car.

His next car was a 58 or 60 Cadillac.

It didn't fit the garage as well as the Jag and one night he came home from a party and was negotiating around the back of the Caddy after closing the garage door, stumbled a bit into the fin or tail light, (he wasn't sure which) but broke two ribs.

No damage to the car.

Edited by JACK M (see edit history)
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2 hours ago, kgreen said:

There are many terms for cars or car parts these days that weren't prevalent at the time the cars were in use.  Dagmars being one of them.

 

The term Dagmars is from the 50s! That's when the cars were new. That's also when Dagmar was on TV. She was not on much in the 60s and no appearances by the 70s.

 

5 hours ago, Restorer32 said:

"Anyone want a free drivable '59 Cadillac Coupe?".  Crickets. 

 

You have to consider your audience of your question. All those guys were fully aware of how much work they would have to put into the car. And therefore not interested in a large project. I can tell you the 59 was VERY popular in Virginia during that period.

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14 hours ago, John348 said:

 

I am with you on that with the Caddy's, but think all of the GM cars in 1960 were better looking then the 1959's 

 

All except the 59 Pontiac, a car that caught even Pontiac off guard and with the exception of the 60 Pontiac every Pontiac adopted the split grill theme and WIDE TRACK right through the end of the make. Even for all the GM 59 models Pontiac's fins are small in comparison. It's no wonder it was Motor Trend's Car of the Year.

1959 PONTIAC CATALINA 2-DOOR HARD TOP ONLY 49K MILES – Daniel Schmitt & Co.  Classic Car Gallery

s-l1600.jpg

Edited by Pfeil (see edit history)
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I friend has a few caddies, one of them is a station wagon with a VistaCruiser roof that came that way from GM.  I'll check my other computer for pictures of it and post them up.  

Here's a picture of another one he likes to drive around.

1489095754_WarnerCaddy001.JPG.2d6c1d4810dd0a1d894ce08fb196c42b.JPG

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23 hours ago, Stude Light said:

Very nice.  What are those front bumper protrusions officially referred to as?  I always wondered if that was ever commented on in their marketing or advertising. I have to think that Cadillac had a male dominated design staff at the time.

i've always heard them referred to as "Mae Wests', pardon my 21st century incorrectness

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3 hours ago, padgett said:

The official term is "Dagmars". I always liked the rubber tipped ones the best so a 49 Sedanette with a 57 front end would be the best of both worlds.

That's the 49 Club Coupe not Sedanet, Sedanet is a Buick term.

1949 Cadillac Brochure Page 8

Directory Index: Buick/1949_Buick/1949 Buick Brochure>>>>see below how it's spelled.

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39 minutes ago, Pfeil said:

That's the 49 Club Coupe not Sedanet, Sedanet is a Buick term.

1949 Cadillac Brochure Page 8

Directory Index: Buick/1949_Buick/1949 Buick Brochure>>>>see below how it's spelled.

What did Pontiac and Oldsmobile call that body style? I know Chevy was called the Fleetline

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22 minutes ago, John348 said:

What did Pontiac and Oldsmobile call that body style? I know Chevy was called the Fleetline

Oldsmobile calls it Club sedan. and four door fastbacks are called TOWN Sedan Of course all Olds have Futuramic styling.

Pontiac calls it Streamliner & both two and four door.

Edited by Pfeil (see edit history)
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10 hours ago, padgett said:

"e brake" is an electronic parking brake which did not exist in the last century and is annoying today.

 

P-38 was one of Kelly's best. It is a major ego boost when you no longer have to explain a design decision to those who do not understand (particularly when including a part that does not exist...yet). Buick ventiports are from the P-40 exhaust ports.

 

Once put a 61 Caddy 'vert sideways across a bridge when the brakes went away, does that count. Allante is my fourth owned caddy

How many Venti-ports / exhaust ports does a P-38 have?

Edited by Pfeil (see edit history)
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On 11/18/2020 at 8:03 PM, zepher said:

The designers truly were embracing the 'jet age'.

 

Interesting historical item:  In the late 1950's, when

highways were getting bigger and faster, cars were

rapidly getting bigger and more powerful, not fitting

in garages as well as they used to.  Furthermore, they 

had unusual styling and were over-decorated, with GM's

models looking bloated and heavy.  They had seemingly

lost the lithe, colorful look that led to 1955's boom year.

 

After the poor 1958 selling season, Motor Trend

surveyed its readers, asking "Why didn't you buy

a 1958 car?" 

 

Among the responses was, "Why should a car look like

a jet plane any more than a submarine or a steam

locomotive?  Why can't it look like what it is--a car?"

 

That says a lot! 

Edited by John_S_in_Penna (see edit history)
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