Wednesday, May 02, 2018

The Plymouth

But... let's start from the beginning. In today's video, we'll tell you about a rare car that was underground for half a century. Who put it there and why? Let's find out

Buried 58 Plymouth

58 plymouthThat story about about the time capsuled '57 Plymouth struck a chord.  Shown right: I polish our brand new 1958 Plymouth Belvedere, the car I would later drive after getting my license.  Alas, almost immediately after getting said license I was  sent to pick my sister up at the Jr. High.  I turned into the school driveway and noticed she was with another girl. Was I going to show off?  Bet your ass. Put full pedal  and lost control while negotiation the curve.  Wound up with the car teeter tottering over a curb.  Our only carand required extensive repairs which I was made to repay by becoming full time yard boy.  Worse, no car for a month.

A year later, me and best friend Wally were cruising about (although I was still only allowed to drive a total of 50 miles). Went to Beaver Springs, a local quarry everyone swam at.  Looking  for girls.  Bingo, two lassies leaving the Springs. Put full pedal, sending a rooster tail of gravel behind.  Slowed down, hit the reverse button. Whoops.  It seems you cannot use reverse while the car is still  moving forward, All sort of bad noise.  The girls laughed.  I couldn't back up. 

58 plymouth
Wally pushed me back so I could try "D," which thank God—  worked. Now, sitting at home were my parents and their best friends who'd flown in from Chicago.  The next day they were doing the DC tourArlington, FBI Bldg. etc. My bedroom was off the carport, so when I heard them piling into the car I prayed. Prayed that somehow the car would back out. No.  I heard dad exclaim "What the deuce!" Took me a summer of mowing lawns to pay for that one. 

Good times.


rwnutjob said...

First car I drove was my Mom's 1956 Desoto Firedome with the 330 ci Hemi & dual exhaust. Didn't matter to me that it had a dinky little carburetor. It would eventually build enough speed that it would out run almost anything. I would hit low on the 2 speed push button gear selector at 50 mph to hear it rumble coming to a stop. If you weren't careful, you could spit all the buttons on the floor with the wrong gear selection. I became adept at putting the buttons back with the face-plate locked so no one would know. I did shit in that car that should have gotten me killed or jailed.

David aka True Blue Sam said...

If you want a car torn up, let a 16 year old drive it!

Unknown said...

Ah, those pushbuttons! '56 was the first year that Mopar had them; my dad's '55 Imperial had the selector coming out of the dash. And wasn't it the Edsel that had pushbuttons in the center of the steering wheel?

Anonymous said...

Ron in Ohio Sez;
Ahhh Yes! The Plymouth Story brings back Chrysler Corp memories. I have owned 5 Plymouth's, 2 Dodge's, 2 DeSoto's and a Chrysler.

My first car was a Flat-head 6 equipped '58 Dodge Coronet 2-door with a 3-speed stick shift - It was a nice looking car but it was so anemic that it wouldn't get out of its own way. I toyed with the idea of putting a junk yard Chrysler Hemi in it. My other Dodge was a '60 Coronet V-8.

Instead, I traded it in on a '59 Plymouth Sport Fury, 365 cu. in. Hemi with the 3-speed Torque-Flite "typewriter shift". Man! That baby could fly. I always gassed-up with Sunoco 260 to feed that monster 4-barrel when I was racing it.

The other Plmouth's were a '57 Savoy 6 cyl. "commuter car", later on I had a '56 Fury with the Golden Commando V-8 just to relive the glory days of the '59 Sport Fury. I even had a '48 Plymouth coupe, won on a tip-board at a gas station.

My DeSoto's were a '56 with the Hemi. and a totally bad-ass '59 - Fastest big car I have ever owned, and that says something since I'm sure it woulda' out ran my '66 Chrysler and my '97 Cadillac with the North Star V-8.

drew458 said...

horry clap you guys are old. i'm a neo-geezer and I didn't start driving until 1977.

JLW III said...

In my case it was a 1957 Chrysler New Yorker four door hardtop. Two tone light blue and white. 392 Hemi with 325 SAE gross bhp. We got it when we lived in McIntosh, AL. My late sister who was four years and change older than I ran through four transmissions between when we got the car and when I got my license. I had driven our prior 1952 Dodge in Alabama on back roads. Three speed on the tree with fluid drive not a torque converter. Standard ops was to put the lever in neutral, then pull it back and down into first. After getting going the usual thing was to flip the lever into neutral and then back down skipping second gear. No clutch needed.
Anyway back to the '75 Chrysler. I took my first and only behind the wheel driving test in September, 1961, in downtown Baltimore parking in a random street slot. Parking that beast wasn't that bad since the fins and the dual radio antennas demarked the end of the car. Combined with a seriously over boosted power steering made it simple.

Unknown said...

Uh, JLW III, when you speak of taking your driving test in '61 in a '75 Chrysler, is that a dyslexic typo or are you a master of time travel?

The "seriously over-boosted power steering" you mention used to be a distinguishing characteristic of Mopar products. A blind person behind the wheel (not so outrageous; who do you suppose uses the Braille buttons on drive-up ATMs?) could identify a Chrysler product by the sound of the starter when the key was turned, and by the feel (or lack thereof) when the steering wheel was turned.

JLW III said...

Yes, that was a typo. I did state 1957 earlier, so I didn't think it necessary to add a correction given that there's no edit function.

JLW III said...

Stu, on this one the starter was the neutral button not the key. Push the neutral button, notice no park function, turn on the key and depress the neutral button further to activate the starter.
Other Fred Flintstonesque features included windscreen washers with a manual foot pump. We had A/C and got about 5 mpg with it running, but a 24 gallon tank gave you some range. It had one of the first transistor car radios. Unfortunately it had germanium transistors which lasted about a year before the junctions melted. We didn't go for the under dash record player.
It had a humongous trunk. Once my parents sent me to Sears for a six foot folding ladder. Threw it in the trunk and closed the lid.
Great memories.

dubster said...

Well, this is your old best friend Wally. I never told you that I wished cars came with seat belts then 'cause you were a ferocious maniac with the family push-button shifting car. Not so when you got your own car - the ford was your baby, except when you raced it! Gee, before that we took my '53 Studebaker everywhere and it had no reverse so we'd park on a hill or make sure we could pull through a parking spot, like when we went to the Peacock restaurant.

Rodger the Real King of France said...

Good to hear from you Wally ... When I think back on my high school days there's almost nothing that somehow invokes your involvement.

Greg said...

Am I the only one thinking about that movie 'Christine'? Wasn't that (she?) a '57 Plymouth Fury?

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