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Help a new Packard owner
#1
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John H New York
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Hello

I just purchased a 1937 120B Sedan in Michigan and plan to drive it home to Upsate New York. I am wondering, from current and previous owners how should I prepare for this to make it a successful trip. What would be the top speed to drive it? The engine had a complete rebuild about a 1000 miles ago and the transmission rebuilt last summer. Any tips or suggestions would be greatly appreciated. I plan to drive about 400 miles per day and this will bring me home in 2 days.

Thnka to all!!!!

Posted on: 2010/7/15 9:41
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Re: Help a new Packard owner
#2
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Home away from home

JWL
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John, congratulations on becoming a Packard owner. The 120s are great motor cars, and you will enjoy many hours driving and caring for it. I would recommend that you not drive your 120 this distance at this time. I think it would be a better idea to have it transported to your home. To attempt a trip of this distance I would want a fully sorted-out car. Also, I would want to fully understand the workings of the car so I would know what to do if (more likely when) something malfunctions. Your car is over 70 years old, and while yours may be in good condition you do not know the condition of all the systems (braking, steering, suspension, tires, cooling, electrical, ignition, etc.). Better to become familiar with the car and sort out all of its working parts in your driveway than on the side of the road. I expect others here will give you necessary tips for a long road trip. You can evaluate all of this and make up your mind. Regardless, best of luck and let us know about your experiences. If it is a 1937 model (15th Series) then it would be a 120C, the 120Bs were 1936 models (14th Series). Also, there will be an Australian contacting you about your new acquisition. He is a major contributor here, quite knowledgeable, but rather insistent. This is the best website for Packards and owners of these fine motor cars.

(o{I}o)

Posted on: 2010/7/15 9:59
We move toward
And make happen
What occupies our mind... (W. Scherer)
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Re: Help a new Packard owner
#3
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Owen_Dyneto
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You don't say how long since the car has been in regular use, but before you leave I'd suggest finding a local garage to put it on a lift, give it a grease job, check the trans, steering box and differential for lubricant, drop and clean the oil pan, change the oil, and VERY IMPORTANT check the condition of the tires and brakes. I'd stick to 55 mph if the engine is as advertised and the tires are OK, I'd not drive it on questionable tires. Check for a good jack and lug wrench, and a serviceable spare tire.

Consider going to NAPA or equiv before you leave and having spare voltage regulator, ignition points, condensor, rotor, distributor cap, gas filter if so equipped, tape for temporary repair of radiator hoses, spare coil and jumper wires for temporarily installating same. You might consider also taking a new 6-volt electric fuel pump and enough rubber hose to affect a temporary connection - if the mechanical pump fails, DON'T use an electric to push thru it, bypass it or you risk serious engine damage.

Fuel delivery (tank, fuel pump) problems are often a problem with a car that has been out of service for a while, so upgrade you AAA or whatever towing service you have. Be prepared for overheating and carry a couple of gallons of water. With a car in unknown condition, it's a chancy thing to try to make that drive.

Best wishes for a save, uneventful trip.

Posted on: 2010/7/15 10:01
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Re: Help a new Packard owner
#4
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Home away from home

Mike Grimes
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They say the difference between an optimist and a pessimist is that a pessimist is an optimist with experience. With that said, assuming your trip from Michigan to Ballston Spa (we used to live in Saratoga Springs so I'm envious this time of year) is about 600 miles...

If you fly over your airfare will be about $400 plus about $100-$200 in hotel/food/gas or other expenses assuming there is no mechanical surprise along the way back, total about $500-600.

If you drive over, you have one car round trip and the Packard one way back, fuel/hotel/food would total about $500-$600.

My point is that I'd get some bids from transport companies. An enclosed trailer might be around $1-$1.25 per mile or about $600-$700.

For the $100 premium I'd call it cheap insurance and have someone ship it to me rather than run the risk a fuel pump/water pump/tire/wheel bearing/dragging brake shoe/ et al surprise along the way. While the Packard will impress any tow truck driver, I doubt that he'll be impressed enough to forget the tow charge and most repair shops will think Packard was the guy who's first name was Hewlett.

Hope you enjoy the Packard as much as we enjoyed SPAC and the track.

Good luck.

Posted on: 2010/7/15 13:32
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Re: Help a new Packard owner
#5
Home away from home
Home away from home

bkazmer
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having made this trip or something close to it many times, regardless of whether the Packard rides or drives, the faster/shorter way is through Ontario (unless the car is near Toledo) so have the paperwork right for the two border crossings!

Posted on: 2010/7/15 15:00
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Re: Help a new Packard owner
#6
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Just can't stay away

John H New York
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Thanks for the input. I have checked around and the car has been driven regular enough, and maintained well enough that I'm going to give it a shot. I live about 15 miles south of Saratoga in the Town of Malta. I already have my non-refundable airfare ticket to South Bend Indiana and it's about 30 miles north of there in Stevensville, Michigan. So I will be staying south of Canada. I'll keep you posted of my trip and thanks for raising the flags.

Posted on: 2010/7/15 15:44
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Re: Help a new Packard owner
#7
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Ozstatman
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Quote:
JW wrote:......Also, there will be an Australian contacting you about your new acquisition. He is a major contributor her, quite knowledgeable, but rather insistent.....
G'day again John H,

While I resemble that remark I think John(JW) overstates my credentials. Major contributor - yes, rather insistent - yes, bur quite knowledgeable - I don't think so. My knowledge is slowly building as my few remaining gray cells slowly accumulate PackardInfo.

Regarding my insistent streak, what John(JW) refers to is my requesting new PackardInfo members to include their Packards in the Owner Registry. John H I had already done with you in this earlier thread and I usually don't follow up those posts except to thank members when their Packard is added to the Registry. But seeing John(JW) has raised it, I now feel bound to request the '37 be included in the Packard Owner's Registry here, together with a pic, any known history and how you acquired it? And if you do decide to drive it home, in some ways probably a good way to get to know your Packard, please let us know how it went. Bound to make a good story which we'd all be interested in hearing.

Posted on: 2010/7/15 15:57
Mal
/o[]o\
====

Bowral, Southern Highlands of NSW, Australia
"Out of chaos comes order" - Nietzsche.

1938 Eight Touring Sedan - SOLD

1941 One-Twenty Club Coupe - SOLD

1948 Super Eight Limo, chassis RHD - SOLD

1950 Eight Touring Sedan - SOLD

What's this?
Put your Packard in the Packard Vehicle Registry!
Here's how!
Any questions - PM or email me at ozstatman@gmail.com
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Re: Help a new Packard owner
#8
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gunnison
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I believe I am familiar with the car, having corresponded with the Michigan owner some years ago. A Model 120B would be a '36. Take old US 20 home to upstate New York. Stay off the interestates and the NY Thruway. Keep your speed at 48-54 mph and probably you'll not have any trouble. Nice car; I saw it on ebay and have photos from when it was restored. Congratulations.

Posted on: 2010/7/15 16:02
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Re: Help a new Packard owner
#9
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Just can't stay away

John H New York
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Thanks, I will add it to the registry and post a couple of pictures. I feel like a little kid that got handed the keys to the candy store. I am looking forward to being a Packard owner. I am going out on the 7th of August to pick it up.

Posted on: 2010/7/15 16:04
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Re: Help a new Packard owner
#10
Just can't stay away
Just can't stay away

John H New York
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Thanks, I will add it to the registry and post a couple of pictures. I feel like a little kid that got handed the keys to the candy store. I am looking forward to being a Packard owner. I am going out on the 7th of August to pick it up.

Posted on: 2010/7/15 16:15
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