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Hoseman

1942 hudson pickup

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? I just purchased a 1942 hudson pickup. It has been in a ladys garage for 45 years. There are also many more hudson parts stored with the truck. The truck is very solid. The engine is complete but it is out of truck. Where can i get a value on this? Any help is appreciated.

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Guest BJM

You bring up a true correct point that the project market has dried up, compared to what it was years ago. I think that it cost less years ago, the quality of the restorations was perhaps less as we keep getting hit broadsided with images of Pebble Beach quality cars/Scottsdale quality cars and everybody thinks they have to restore to such a high level.

If you just purchased this rare truck and are asking about value, you either a) want to turn it real quick and make a buck or B) want to confirm you have indeed purchased a bargain.

If it is b (I hope) then just enjoy a great restoration project and keep us updated.

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You might try posing this question over at the Hudson Forum, at http://www.classiccar.com/forums/forumdisplay.php?f=13 (this requires a simple registration, in order to post messages). Any 1942 model year car will be fairly scarce, and a Hudson truck even scarcer...though scarcity doesn't necessarily translate to enormous value. However, there seems to be a good market for Hudson trucks amongst Hudson enthusiasts, even ''project'' trucks.

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<span style="font-style: italic">The Standard Catalog of Independents</span> lists total 1942 model year production for Hudson at 40,661 vehicles. Don Butler's book (<span style="font-style: italic">The History of Hudson</span>) lists 1942 calendar year production at 5396 cars and 67 commercial vehicles. Assuming that the ratio of cars to commercial chassis was the same in the last 3 months of 1941 (it probably was less, if anything), that would mean a total production of less than 500 Hudson trucks and commercial vehicles for 1942.

There were 2 pickups offered for 1942 by Hudson, the 116" wheelbase standard model and the 128" wheelbase "Big Boy". They also offered a "Utility Coupe" and "Utility Coach" (essentially business coupes and salesmen's vehicles) in the commercial line. All 4 types totalled together would probably be less than 500 vehicles manufactured.

Trucks don't come much rarer! Given the active status of the Hudson Essex Terraplane Club, I'd be willing to bet this is one of the more sought-after "project cars" extant! It'd be a shame to see it lost, and I'm sure someone in the Hudson fraternity would see to it financially that it be preserved. <img src="http://forums.aaca.org/images/graemlins/cool.gif" alt="" />

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FWIW, I have one of the coupes, complete and restorable, so I know a little bit about what I speak. I've had it since September with abseloutely zero interest.

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<div class="ubbcode-block"><div class="ubbcode-header">Quote:</div><div class="ubbcode-body">FWIW, I have one of the coupes, complete and restorable, so I know a little bit about what I speak. I've had it since September with abseloutely zero interest. </div></div>

Hudson made 12 other coupe models in 1942 (6 three passenger and 6 six passenger models) in additon to the "Utility Coupe" mentioned. They are in total dirt common compared to the pickups, although obviously desirable beyond any sedan. I'm sure if you stick with it you'll eventually be able to find someone for your coupe, but if it were a pickup similarly advertized I'd bet it'd sell in 1/10th the time. Good luck! <img src="http://forums.aaca.org/images/graemlins/smile.gif" alt="" />

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Guest BJM

Dave,

Generally speaking, Pontiac59 does not let the market determine his pricing. If you have a 10 day ebay auction starting with 1.00 and NO RESERVE, then that is a snapshot of the market. His price is too high for interest. For non running, full restoration required projects, especially with rust, basically the vehicle needs to be given away ($250 to $1,000). Pontiac59 certainly has the right NOT to give the cars he has away, but then can't complain that people won't buy his projects.

We are almost always amazed at the prices asked for junkyard vehicles, parts or projects. How often have you approached an old geezer in a salvage yard on the verge of being bulldozed by zoning laws regarding a desirable (to you) old car taht can be saved and told "I'll take $2,500 for it". The old guy paid maybe $25 for it 30 years ago, the car stays, gets crushed. You were maybe thinking $500 tops. You see those ebay auctions all the time - I tried to get a 56 Roadmaster 4 door hardtop in Kentucky 2 months ago. All wheels sunk into the ground, tree fully grown up next to the drivers rear fender. Old man never going to get to it, neighbor with a computer "helping" out, puts his cars on ebay. There is a RESERVE. I bid what I could afford and frankly what I thought it was worth (including time and money to extract) and never got close. Why? Because the 4 door hardtop had Air Conditioning. So the seller said NO WAY (Reserve was not met) he would part it out because "he had a lot of interest in the parts, way more then the cost of the entire car". That is in fact very true - one can get much more out of parts off these old cars on ebay then the entire car cost. I have contemplated that as a side business out of my garage. However, my garage is full of projects and I don't think my neighbors would appreciate the slow removal of parts off old hulks.

The costs to restore start immediately as you may know, it could cost $250 to $1,000 to go pick up a project vehicle as the ones you usually want are typically not located around the corner.

There was a seller on the AACA Buy/Sell that was offering a solid 46 Lincoln Contiental not too long ago that had to bring his ad back to the top after two months from no interest. There were only 265 Continental smade in 1946, about as rare and desirable of a full classic as you can find. It did not have a drivetrain, other then that there was a lot to work with. Price? $1,200 or offer.

Folks with projects, especially folks that have the Speed Channel in January, think they have the retirement fund in their backyards. Thousands of interesting and desirable projects will continue to languish because sellers refuse to adjust to the basic laws of economics regarding supply and demand ergo pricing.

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I agree with 3Jakes. Add to that the sad fact that while the economy may be doing well, many of those left in the Middle Class are not having such good fortune. Money is scarce, and doesn't go nearly as far as it did just five years ago. Most of us interested in old, antique, Classic, and desirable collector cars, face an ever increasing cost curve just to bring the car to the home or garage, let alone finding parts cars, parts sources, tools, etc... Yes, it is the cost of the hobby. And yes, you make the time and money available; however, people, especially with young families, are forced to choose between a home and the hobby. The fact is, it is difficult to make ends meet with two incomes, let alone spend $36000 on a restoration project sitting in the garage, no matter how cheap that project was. I know, I have one sitting in my son's garage.

But it is good to know that there are young people interested in collectable cars. Jonathan, my son, is 22 years old, a graduate of CUatDenver, and working. He is restoring his 1972 Eldorado convertible at Mitchell Motors restoration shop in Littleton. He has taken out a sizable loan and is paying for it himself. Ok, it isn't a 1946 Lincoln or 1938 Cadillac V-12. The car was in #3 shape when he bought it. So there is hope.

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I'm not interested in selling cars for the scrap price. Scrap is so high now I can chuck a few engine blocks in a car and get close to $500 just junking the things. If I can part the car out for a few pieces, still scrap the carcass, and make $2500, then the car is worth $2500. If I have two days of labor in the car, my purchase price, my gas, my rent, my taxes, etc. in that car, then the car's worth enough to cover it's share of that cost. You seem to think that just because someone has land and has a car they may not have paid a lot for, you should be able to get it for next to nothing. Attitudes like that are why cars get crushed. When applicable I research what a car and it's parts are worth and that is where I set prices from. When no research is possible, I use Old Cars Price Guide magazine as a basis for pricing. If you don't want to pay that, then you're more than welcome to A: buy something better elsewhere for less money, or B: piece one together from individual parts.

eBay is hardly a snapshot of the market when used in the manner suggested. I'd trust an Old Cars Price Guide before I'd trust the results of one auction that any of 1000 factors can come to play on.

I also find many people seem to fail to grasp the concept of making an offer, or what an asking price is. They look at some mangled partial car and send whiny notes to tell what junk it is, meanwhile the guy who needs a crankshaft or a set of spindles off it won't hesitate to drop $1000 or $500 for those parts which are perfectly fine, not reproduced anywhere, and not liable to be reproduced by anyone in my lifetime. Those comments have nothing to do with lacking money or being in any class of society, they have more to do with just plain being an ignorant rectum.

Most of the cars I have posted on eBay are in an eBay store, are listed as "run until sold", have a "Buy It Now or Best Offer" listing, and when I say zero interest in the car I mean no one has made an offer, no one has asked any questions, no one has expressed any interest at all.

I also get tired of turkeys offering $200 or $500 for cars like a '55 Chrysler that runs and goes and could stand a paint job, when I see identical cars selling for $3000 on a regular basis. This car was registered and on the road in 1994. I'd drive it for a winter rat in the salt before I sold it for that cheap.

And I see nothing wrong with a junkyard owner setting a price for something and if it's not worth that it's his to do with as he pleases. If you don't like his price, make an offer. If he won't take it, then it wasn't meant to be. I deal with that every time I want to add to my inventory - and I always try and buy something so I don't waste the guy's time, even if it's a $20 hubcap.

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Guest BJM

I tried not to make my comments personal Pontiac59, because I do respect your position. It's very valid. But you came on and stated that you had no interest in a certain car and were surprised.

The position I took is validated daily, on ebay, throughout salvage yards across the country. I'm not afraid to pay the price if I think the car is worth it, I'm just saying there are a lot of cars not getting restored, rusting into the ground because they are over-priced.

I definitely understand your point about having the ground/rent/overhead costs BUT if your a salvage yard owner that keeps a car froever, eventually getting crushed then that seems kind of backwards to me. It's a business sure, but most folks into old cars also love the cars and the hobby.

I have heard your comments regarding making an offer before, and that part is true, if you really want the car. But in this marketplace, where there is still a lot of iron out there IMO, if you have a choice to restore a convertible (or a Camaro or rare Mustang/muscle) or an old Hudson or whatever, there just isn't the market for the Hudson.

A guy that would have jumped at an old car project 20 years ago really hesitates now. Or buys the car, gets home, gets the catalogs, finds out what chrome plating costs, interiors cost, and then it's on the ebay carousel in 6 months. Our point was more to do with needing to get the initial purchase at the lowest possible price because of the high cost of restoration. Not that your always overpriced or that I'm cheap.

It's a wide divide between the "project" car and a nice say, number 2 car or a driver number 3 car. A number 3 car is a tweener in my opinion. I bought a low mileage 64 Electra convertible once for $4800 that I could've enjoyed for 2 to 5 years as is BUT if I want to restore that car, it costs me about the same as a non rusty full body off non running "project" car restoration.

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It's pretty simple, really, the longer I have to deal with people who think they should get something for nothing, the less I enjoy dealing with them. Either buy it, or don't buy it - don't waste my time. If it's not worth what I say it is, then it's mine to crush if I want. If you really love the cars you say you do, then you should be prepared to pay what they're worth, not offer me barely over the scrap dealer and tell me what a piece of junk the car is that it has all this stuff wrong with it. I can scrap the car and get paid up front and that guy doesn't care if I ran it over with a bulldozer first, it's just weight, and it's a lot easier to deal with.

I'm really understanding the mindset of these old guys who are such a pain to deal with - people who come, spend all day tramping through the yard, leave doors and hoods open and break a few things or maybe steal small parts while they're at it, then buy nothing are a complete waste of my time too.

Or people who look at a complete, relatively solid, buildable car and ask me something like "will you sell the hood ornament off that? I need one" from a car with a $4000 asking price. If you need one go look on eBay or find another one in a junkyard, I'm not taking one $20 or $50 part off a car I could put on the road and drive with a couple days of work!

I have a '37 Willys that proves eBay listings are no bearing on a car's value; even though every other one I've seen listed has been bid to around $3000-$3500 for a roller shell in the same shape, of the four times I've run it the most it ever got bid to was $1000 and at least twice it's gotten no bids at all. I could part the car out and junk it and get more money than these jerks are willing to pay, but it's a complete buildable car, and I'm not going to give it away when the fenders alone bring as much as $900 a shot. You can't piece one together for what I want for this one and no one has one cheaper (often no one else even has one for sale in the first place), but I still have the car. I'm starting to wonder if an S10 rearend will fit in it, and if the front and rear springs interchange.

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<div class="ubbcode-block"><div class="ubbcode-header">Quote:</div><div class="ubbcode-body">I have a '37 Willys that proves eBay listings are no bearing on a car's value; even though every other one I've seen listed has been bid to around $3000-$3500 for a roller shell in the same shape, of the four times I've run it the most it ever got bid to was $1000 and at least twice it's gotten no bids at all. </div></div>

Why do you think that is? If every other one you've ever seen sold for that number, and yours is exactly the same, what is it about yours that makes it so difficult to sell? If it's just as nice (or nicer), to what do you attribute the low bids? Perhaps the market has spoken to you, you just didn't hear it?

Perhaps you'd have more success selling your cars if you did, indeed, put a couple days of work into <span style="font-weight: bold"><span style="font-style: italic">"a car I could put on the road and drive with a couple days of work!"</span></span> A running, driving car will always be easier to sell than a heap, and if your cars are that close to being running and driving, why the heck wouldn't you do that to add value? You clearly expect prospective buyers to somehow see that value when the car isn't operational--why not show it to them? You might find that your asking prices will immediately become reasonable to them.

Or are you like everyone else when you see an ad that says something like "Just needs finishing! 99.9% done, ready to go!" If they're so close to being done, why aren't these guys finishing the cars and getting top dollar for them? Hmmmmm.

And if the parts are so valuable, why not part it out? Sure it takes some of your time, but even you admit that you'll make more money that way. What's the problem? I'd rather have cash in the bank than a rotting hulk whose parts aren't getting any nicer sitting my yard.

Or it is, as you say, your car. You can do what you want. You think they're worth one price, other people don't agree and they don't have to buy it. Most people in this hobby expect to haggle and there's not one single old car or old car part that doesn't have some negotiation room on it. It kind of sounds like you're trying to hold the cars hostage and threatening to kill them if someone doesn't pay you a ransom:

<div class="ubbcode-block"><div class="ubbcode-header">Quote:</div><div class="ubbcode-body">

I can scrap the car and get paid up front and that guy doesn't care if I ran it over with a bulldozer first, it's just weight, and it's a lot easier to deal with.

I'm starting to wonder if an S10 rearend will fit in it, and if the front and rear springs interchange.

</div></div>

Go ahead and do it if you think it'll put money in your pocket. Cut 'em up, rod 'em, whatever. You don't need to do anybody any favors keeping these cars around. You're not obligated to be the caretaker for them until someone else comes along willing to pay your price. Get your money out of them any way you can and move on. It sounds like dealing with prospective buyers is causing you too many headaches anyway.

Listen, I know exactly how you feel--I have a freshly restored house that's completely new and I can't give it away. It appraised for $189,000 and I have it listed in the mid-$150s, and will slash the price again shortly. Nobody sees the value there, either. I have a certain number I have to get out of it to avoid losing money, and I'll go there if I have to. I get a lot of "tire kickers" every weekend looking at it, but there are so many other choices in so many other neighborhoods for the same money, it's hard to stand out and people assume that there's always something nicer and cheaper just around the corner. They never come back, and I'm getting bitter, too. Nevertheless, I'm at the mercy of the free market and until my price matches a buyer's willingness to pay it, I'll continue to own this house. It's as simple as that.

Perhaps that's part of the problem you're having--no offense, but your stuff isn't special, especially considering the amount of work it will require, and there are a lot of options. If I could get a running, driving car that I could use right now for even three or four or five times what you're asking for your heap, I'd probably spend it and be grateful for it. If a car is worth under $50,000 in fully restored condition, there's exactly no financial reason to buy it. You have to love that particular car, and there aren't that many cars around that people adore so much that they're willing to get ridiculously upside-down on them. A 1942 Hudson coupe is such a vehicle, as is a 1940 Buick Roadmaster. Mildly interesting maybe, but not a "spend every night in the garage for 3 years" kind of passion. Those are the only guys who will be interested in marginal heaps, and there's maybe only one or two such lunatics for each particular model of mass-produced old car. You've got to understand your buyer just as much as you say you understand the market.

You can do whatever you want with your cars, not a single person here will ever argue to the contrary. Just don't complain when not everybody wants to jump in the pool and swim with you.

PS: back on topic, I think a '42 Hudson truck is about as cool a pre-war roller as you're going to find. I love how they look and would like to have one myself someday. Buy it and restore it because of the enjoyment you'll get from the project and from the finished car. If you do it for profit, however, remember that it's cheaper to drive down the highway throwing $100 dollar bills out the window as you go. <img src="http://forums.aaca.org/images/graemlins/laugh.gif" alt="" />

Good luck with the project!

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Guest BJM

Thanks Matt. That sums up some of my points. Pontiac59 has placed many comments on this forum and I think he is a great guy with many good insights and I run a few ebay auctions and get tired of the nonsense questions I get asked as well. It's not Pontiac59, it's the market for all things not conv/muscle/uber rare. Yes they only made 3500 1940 Roadmaster coupes as you note, and yes there are only a handful left, but a normal bloke such as myself with lower middle income wages must really rub my chin before I want to dive in. So the impass remains between full on project owners and potential buyers.

Pontiac59's comments that he has seen "several" other auctions bring amounts close to his reserves or buy it nows I find sceptical and I would like to see him post those auctions at or near their results as proof that similar cars are getting those bids. As to the comment that don't people know how to make an offer? Yes, but if the buy it now is such and such, and there are comments such as "if you don't want it for that price I'll go ahead and keep it, I don't really care" (1940 Buick Roadmaster coupe ebay auction content) makes potential interested parties wary of proceeding least you receive a nasty response.

I have done business with a 49 Buick collector in Windsor, Canada, a good honest fellow named Alex Roehl and he has a 49 Roadmaster Riviera I desperately want and placed it on ebay for a 7 day run with a reserve. I bid what I could afford. It was listed in parts cars section to save on fees probably but is a very solid project. Top bid? $52! I was high bidder referenced as reserve was not met.

I have placed one or two of my current projects on ebay because I knew I had purchased too many, and once they are disassembled there is very little interest.

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First of all, if you are looking for opinions on a 1942 Hudson pick up I think it would be a great choice of vehicle - somewhat rare, nice, unusual lines, and a little under-rated as a marque in my opinion. Sounds like a good find, and if you are looking to sell, I would not be too discouraged.

The rule of thumb I always follow is the better the start, the better the finish. (drilled into my head since I got into this as a teen, and still true 25-30 years later.) If it is a true "good project" these are truly getting hard to come by. Many of the projects on eBay, etc. today would have been parts cars not too long ago, a reason many of them don't sell that has already been well covered here. Most, but not all, of the best pre-war unrestoreds have been found, so I think pricing a good unrestored unit is harder than a restored unit in most cases.

In pricing your Hudson I would consider the following: What is missing that may be difficult or pricey to replace; how is the body - remember, trucks are often not super straight even if they are rust free. Does it "need it all" right away or are areas done or ok for now? Do you have any resources available - knowledge, parts, etc. I would say condition will drive a huge price difference - a few thousand for a good start, a few hundred for a car that is better suited for parts. People are almost never be ahead of the game in terms of finances or headaches going with the cheaper, heavy project verses the better unit. Another factor, a better start may also allow you the option to do more yourself in most cases, and maybe in stages if you desire to get out and drive it before completing everything. Many collectors still reallize this, and will pay a premium for a good start.

Hopefully you decide to restore and keep it -

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