Register now to get rid of these ads!

Projects 1957 DESOTO Firesweep

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by baker53, Jan 28, 2014.

  1. baker53
    Joined: Jan 17, 2003
    Posts: 340

    baker53
    Member

    Decided to start a new project. Back in '62 I had a '57 Desoto Firesweep and wanted to get another. Found one in pretty good condition, but it still needs lots of work to put it right once again. It will eventually be a mild custom. I will try and keep a good account of the project on this site as well as search out needed parts from the many good H.A.M.B. members. The pictures below are as purchased. The main body work is on the passenger side of the car as well as the floor pans ahead of the front seats which are rusted. New floor pans will be installed. The engine is in running condition, but work will be needed to get it running smoothly again. The interior is in nice condition except for the drivers seat area.

    1 57 LFT SIDE VIEW.jpg
    The only rust through area on the car is located just forward of the rear wheel opening. The rusted metal will be cut out and replaced with a patch panel.

    3 57 LF FT VIEW.jpg
    The left front fender was replaced some time back and the work done on the fitment leaves a lot to be desired. When the door is opened, it rubs against the rear edge of the fender.

    4 57 LF RR QTR VIEW.jpg
    The bumper has been hit a couple times and will need to be straightened and rechromed. The pot metal tail light housings will also have to be repaired.

    9 57 DASH FM RT.jpg
    The interior of the car is in pretty good condition except for the front floors and the front seat. All of the gauges and accessories are in good working order.

    49 57 ENG BAY.jpg
    The engine barely ran when I was taking the car off the enclosed trailer, but it did make it up the driveway.

    12 57 FRONT SEAT.jpg
    Lots of wear and tear on the front seat. I'm not sure what the new interior will be like yet, but it will be a lot better than it is now.

    18 57 RR INT.jpg
    The rear seat area is in pretty good condition, but it will all be replaced when the car gets to the upholstery shop.

    22 57 REAR HEADLINER.jpg
    I think the headliner will be OK as is. Eventually, I will have the painted metal cross pieces chrome plated.

    38 57 LF FLOOR.jpg
    Rust on the floors which will be cut out and new patch panels welded in.

    40 57 RT FT FLOOR.jpg
    More rust to be cut out and replaced.

    53 57 RT MID CREASES.jpg
    Looks like the car was run up against a high curb. More work in the body shop.

    52 57 RT DOOR CREASE.jpg
    I think this damage happened at the same time. Looks like the metal can be pulled out straight again without a lot of trouble.
     
    Last edited: Jun 10, 2014
  2. big57daddy
    Joined: Jun 25, 2013
    Posts: 80

    big57daddy
    Member

    Cool - I love these big-finned beauties, especially with those taillights and exhaust ports! Except for the floors, it looks to be in amazingly good condition!

    Can't wait to see your progress - what are your plans for "mild custom"?

    cheers, Ray
     
  3. baker53
    Joined: Jan 17, 2003
    Posts: 340

    baker53
    Member

    Thanks Ray, It's been 50 plus years since I had a Desoto and am looking forward to getting this one on the road soon. Bill
     
  4. tedster
    Joined: Mar 20, 2005
    Posts: 519

    tedster
    Member

    I love em, they make great customs. Good luck.
     

  5. honeyman
    Joined: May 24, 2010
    Posts: 330

    honeyman
    Member
    from Steiner

    Looks like a great starting place...
     
  6. Gotgas
    Joined: Jul 22, 2004
    Posts: 6,866

    Gotgas
    Member
    from DFW USA

    Hi Bill,

    We were watching the ebay ad with interest over on forwardlook.net: http://forwardlook.net/forums/forums/thread-view.asp?tid=50811

    Feel free to join over there too. There are a lot of knowledgeable people there if you have any questions about the mechanicals or finding parts.

    If you're new to DeSotos, you should be aware that the Firesweeps were basically Dodge cars with Desoto bodies on them. That means they have Dodge drivetrains, built on Dodge assembly lines, etc. That can be a good thing, as it makes some parts a little easier to locate. There are a lot of folks in Texas that will be willing to help you with your car. Hope to see you at the Roundup! Congrats on your beautiful coupe.
     
  7. baker53
    Joined: Jan 17, 2003
    Posts: 340

    baker53
    Member

    Thanks guys... I will for sure check out the forwardlook forum. The only Desoto activity for me in the past has been using a '53 Desoto grill in a '53 Ford. Maybe that was an omen to redo a Firesweep like the I had in the early 60's. Not sure if I will have it ready for this years Roundup, but for sure in 2015.
     
  8. tiredford
    Joined: Apr 6, 2009
    Posts: 493

    tiredford
    Member
    from Mo.

    Cool car....I've never even heard of one.
     
  9. baker53
    Joined: Jan 17, 2003
    Posts: 340

    baker53
    Member

    I had a '57 Desoto Firesweep Sportsman back in high school in '62. I traded it off for a '56 Chevrolet and had traders remorse for the past 50 plus years. I am the second owner of this 38,000 mile car. I researched the previous owner and she bought the car new and drove it sparingly. She passed away at 92 and the car stayed in storage for many years.
     
  10. 57Custom300
    Joined: Aug 21, 2009
    Posts: 1,315

    57Custom300
    Member
    from Arizona

    Bitchin' car. Far too few of those mid 50 Mopars left. Always good to know another will be saved. I love the front end on those Desotos. I recall some hot rod mag back when had an article where they put that bumper/grill set up on a 58 Ford (I think). Really looked good on that car.
     
  11. George
    Joined: Jan 1, 2005
    Posts: 7,286

    George
    Member

    I Bet!:eek:
     
  12. vtx1800
    Joined: Oct 4, 2009
    Posts: 1,086

    vtx1800
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    The first car I drove was dad's 58 Dodge, it was a pedestrian four door Royal but with the 325 Cube, four barrel it ran pretty good. It too had the twin laid back antennas except they were mounted just inside the fins right behind the back glass. I didn't remember DeSoto mounting the antenna's on the fins like that. Nice looking car, I like the colors too.
     
  13. baker53
    Joined: Jan 17, 2003
    Posts: 340

    baker53
    Member

    57Custom300: Those bumpers are big and heavy. I remember taking mine off and jacking up the torsion bars on mine for a week or so to get a gasser look. Putting that bumper back on was a bear doing it by myself.

    vtx1800: The Desoto I had in '62 only had one radio antenna. The twin rear antennas were an option, probably a whopping $5 or so.
     
  14. Rusty O'Toole
    Joined: Sep 17, 2006
    Posts: 9,298

    Rusty O'Toole
    Member

    In those years Plymouth Dodge DeSoto and Chrysler all used the same body. This surprised me too. I found out about it when helping restore a 1959 Chrysler New Yorker sedan. It needed a new roof. The owner found a 1957 Plymouth sedan in a junkyard. I did not think the roof would fit but we measured, and they were identical.
     
  15. Squablow
    Joined: Apr 26, 2005
    Posts: 14,542

    Squablow
    Member

    '57 Desoto is one of my all-time favorite factory designs. A shaved hood and maybe some different caps or chromed steel wheels and a lowering is all it'd need to be a perfect mild custom. This looks like a real nice one, too.
     
  16. luke13
    Joined: Oct 25, 2013
    Posts: 381

    luke13
    Member

    IT STILL HAS THE POLY IN IT!!!! what size motor is it and are you going to run with it? can you please post a video of it running so we can here it, thats if it still runs.
     
  17. 35desoto
    Joined: Oct 6, 2009
    Posts: 760

    35desoto
    Member

    It will have the DODGE BASED 325CI POLY IN IT. good engine if you don't over rev them - long stroke but great grunters if you know how to tune and build them. Here in NZ a similar car would have the Plymouth 318 based engine which is different to the Dodge one
     
  18. O.Hove
    Joined: Feb 12, 2006
    Posts: 771

    O.Hove
    Member Emeritus
    from S.D.

    Love the 57-58 DeSotos
    Putting 57 front bumper on my 58
     
  19. baker53
    Joined: Jan 17, 2003
    Posts: 340

    baker53
    Member

    From what I understand the '57 Desoto Firesweep was built on the Dodge assembly line and I believe the chassis and drive train is Dodge. The Desoto Firesweep body was fitted on the Dodge frame. The engine is a 325 poly as 35Desoto mentioned. I was very happy to find this Firesweep and it has more options than the one I had in '62. Hopefully, the work on it will go smoothly and it will be running the roads again.
     
  20. luke13
    Joined: Oct 25, 2013
    Posts: 381

    luke13
    Member

    neat project and the floor looks not to bad. i have only just aquired a d55 poly and am learning all about them hence the obsession. i didnt know they existed till 12 months ago, great to see one in its natural habitat
     
  21. luke13
    Joined: Oct 25, 2013
    Posts: 381

    luke13
    Member

    and also in nz some one would have pulled that out to put a small block chev in it.
     
  22. baker53
    Joined: Jan 17, 2003
    Posts: 340

    baker53
    Member

    luke13: I recently received new floor pans for the front and hopefully, it won't be long before I start cutting out the rusted floors and welding in the new pans.
     
  23. luke13
    Joined: Oct 25, 2013
    Posts: 381

    luke13
    Member

    must be like christmas morning at your house lookin at those fresh stampings, exiting.
     
  24. George
    Joined: Jan 1, 2005
    Posts: 7,286

    George
    Member

    Here to, that's why the SBC is called a "bellybutton" engine, 90% of rods have them.

    The 325 can be converted into a hemi with Dodge hemi heads(complete assembly inc push rods), pistons, ex mans.
     
  25. My next door neighbor and best friend when I was growing up was given the family car when he turned 16. It was a white four-door 1957 DeSoto Firedome with a 341 Hemi. Lots of rust at the bottom of the fenders, the rockers and the other usual places. Nonetheless, we rebuilt the engine and drove that boat everywhere.

    He's long passed now, but I think I know where that car is today, and I might just take a day trip to a family orchard in northern Missouri some day and see if the car is still in the barn where they parked it back in the late 1960s.
     
  26. baker53
    Joined: Jan 17, 2003
    Posts: 340

    baker53
    Member

    osage orange: I hope you can get the '57 Desoto Firedome going again.
     
  27. tattoos by brandon
    Joined: Jun 28, 2011
    Posts: 540

    tattoos by brandon
    Member
    from salem ohio

    Love it I got a 59 Chrysler new yorker I'm working on ...I got a build thread on here if u want to check it out I updated the brakes to disc and what not and it's fully air bagged shaved metal flake roof and soon more lol

    Posted using the Full Custom H.A.M.B. App!
     

    Attached Files:

  28. 35desoto
    Joined: Oct 6, 2009
    Posts: 760

    35desoto
    Member

    No such sacrilege in this household - nor those of my Mopar friends - stay pure to the breed!!!!
     
  29. Stic
    Joined: Aug 14, 2013
    Posts: 119

    Stic
    Member

    I had a '61 Plymouth Belvedere for a few years, Identical (minus rust) to the one below...318 and 2sp with push button on dash...

    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: May 25, 2014
  30. A lovely car... I had a 57 New Yorker. 2 dr Hardtop. I don't think the windows EVER aligned or worked properly since the day it left the factory... They were quite simply very poorly engineered.
     

Share This Page

Register now to get rid of these ads!

Archive

Copyright © 1995-2020 The Jalopy Journal: Steal our stuff, we'll kick your teeth in. Terms of Service. Privacy Policy.

Atomic Industry
Forum software by XenForo™ ©2010-2014 XenForo Ltd.