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« 1 2 (3) 4 »

Re: 1955 Carribean hardtop
#21
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PackardV8
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Kind'a begs the question:
Does his 53 Carib also have the HydroVac????

Posted on: 2011/10/18 21:14
VAPOR LOCK demystified: See paragraph SEVEN of PMCC documentaion as listed in post #11 of the following thread:f
http://packardinfo.com/xoops/html/modules/newbb/viewtopic.php?topic_id=7245
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Re: 1955 Carribean hardtop
#22
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PackardV8
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MLGrimes writes:
"I have seen one documented dealer/factory conversion of a 5587 to a "Caribbean" that was sold new in Grosse Point. The production number was slight over 7000 and the ..."

The 7000 number i assume means the VN was something on the order of 55XX-7zzz. That would be decideing factor on wheather or not any alleged 55 Carib HT was real or a later owner modification or STRICTLY a dealer mod.

3 conditions exist:

1. a FACTORY authorized mod (whether done by dealer or combination dealer/factory or factory only.). i.e. factory had knowledge such of a car and or such a car order .
2. a DEALER ONLY modification (factory had no knowledge of).
3. an owners sole attempt to make a Carib out of a 400.

I conjecture that the 7000 sereies number that makes the difference.

EDIT: THe above is most likely incorrect. I was off by 1000. According to Encyclopedia of American cars there are 7205 1955 400's. Which means the highest VN production number is 8205. So my above conjecture is vacuous after all.

Posted on: 2011/10/18 21:22
VAPOR LOCK demystified: See paragraph SEVEN of PMCC documentaion as listed in post #11 of the following thread:f
http://packardinfo.com/xoops/html/modules/newbb/viewtopic.php?topic_id=7245
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Re: 1955 Carribean hardtop
#23
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PackardV8
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Encyclopedia of American Cars also indicates "A very few 1955 Caribbean hardtops have been discovered". As BH has also indicated.

Posted on: 2011/10/18 21:54
VAPOR LOCK demystified: See paragraph SEVEN of PMCC documentaion as listed in post #11 of the following thread:f
http://packardinfo.com/xoops/html/modules/newbb/viewtopic.php?topic_id=7245
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Re: 1955 Carribean hardtop
#24
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BH
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Since production for the 5587 model was 7,206, the 7000 range merely indicates that the subject vehicle was built late in the production run.

I doubt that this is a case where the factory took the last of the run of 5587s and experimented with a hardtop version of the Caribbean. More likely, management noticed the success that dealers had with conversion and decided to get a piece of the action with a factory-built hardtop - for customers who wanted a Caribbean, but preferred a closed car.

Any 1955 Caribbean hardtop is a conversion, but we can't be sure who did the work without bona fide documentation for each case. However, I've never seen anything that shows the factory did so. As others have noted, it wouldn't be hard for a dealer with body shop facilities to do the work, but the devil is in the details.

Yet, based on our experience with some other documented special builds from 1956, the blank paint and trim codes on the VN plate for the car owned by Dale Lyons hints at a special request of production.

If only the production records from '55 were available...

Posted on: 2011/10/18 22:06
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Re: 1955 Carribean hardtop
#25
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point
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i dont believe the factory had anything do with any conversions, if they did im sure they would have the hood with the scoops, i believe people wanted the caribbean look ,and spent the extra money to have few pieces of chrome added and a little paint,,, i have a 55,400 with the 56 chrome on the sides ,it was a left over 55,,guy wanted the 56 look to buy it, lets face it anyone can add teh few chrome strips,who would know the difference,

Posted on: 2011/10/19 0:31
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Re: 1955 Carribean hardtop
#26
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BH
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Yes, it's not terribly difficult to add a few pieces of trim and squirt a couple more colors on the lower body. However, trim upgrades were commonly executed by dealers back then (and not only on Packards), but done with a lot more craftsmanship than the peel-n-stick schlock that so many dealers slap on vehicles these days.

I once had a '55 Patrician with '56 side trim added to the rear of the rear door louvres, but not below the trunk. Also, that car had been painted in a single color by the factory, Emerald Green (Code C), but was later repainted in a '56 two-tone, Shannon Green over Norwegian Forest. I concluded that at least the trim work was done by a dealer because all fasteners were of OE type, but the mounting holes were drilled rather than punched. I had planned to return the car to original colors and trim, but sold it before I got very far with any work; sadly, the subsequent owner has done nothing with the car.

Getting back to '55 Caribbean "hardtops", the Lyons car DID have the Caribbean hood, with scoops. However, it is the absence of paint/trim codes on the Lyons car that suggests a production deviation. For all we know, the factory may have supplied this car in special paint/trim at the request of a dealer or owner.

The production records that we've seen, here, for bona fide special builds on some 1956 models have provided a little insight in that regard, and I'm just extending that experience backward as a possibility

However, in the absence of any irrefutable evidence, my position is that 1955 Caribbean hardtop conversions - involving more than just some additional exterior trim and a little paint work - were likely done by dealers.

Posted on: 2011/10/19 9:48
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Re: 1955 Carribean hardtop
#27
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Bill
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Posted on: 2011/10/19 17:19
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Re: 1955 Carribean hardtop
#28
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Owen_Dyneto
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Ah yes, but the difference is that's a 1956, and a real one, and one with a quite well-documented provenance.

Posted on: 2011/10/19 17:31
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Re: 1955 Carribean hardtop
#29
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Owen_Dyneto
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I really don't know anything definitive about the 1955 Caribbean hardtops and have previously assumed they were dealer conversions. But I've just been advised by the editor that the next issue of PAC's The Packard Cormorant will have an article on them with photos of 6 of the 7 known to exist. Should be an interesting issue.

Posted on: 2011/11/7 22:06
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Re: 1955 Carribean hardtop
#30
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JD in KC
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Dave, just to clarify, I understand that the article will be in the Winter edition not the next (Autumn) edition.

Link to announcement.

Posted on: 2011/11/8 9:27
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