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cadillac flower cars..... how rare?

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by jonzcustomshop, Oct 30, 2008.

  1. jonzcustomshop
    Joined: Jun 25, 2007
    Posts: 1,927


    A friend of mine from austin called up, he had seen a "62 caddy elcamino?" driving through town, and says that is his new dream car...
    I told him it was probably a flower car, which he had not heard of.

    So how rare are they?
    I did a few searches, and only found photos of 6 different cars on the net.

    I would like more pics of 59-64 flower cars if anyone has any.
  2. Someone is still cranking out new ones, which I see once in a while. They go back to the late 1940s. There are 2 basic types, one has just the deck above (most I have seen are stainless steel) and others have a door below the deck to accept a casket.

    One boneyard by me had one that they used as a parts chaser/ delivery car. They're not that rare and I see one once in a while on evil Bay.

  3. cadillac nut
    Joined: Oct 2, 2008
    Posts: 560

    cadillac nut

    i got a 60' cad 2 door flower car ... supossely the only 2 door built in 60 ... something like 23 or 24 4 door chassis's were built....i was told mine was made by McClain Ind. i think they were out of indiana... slowly making a kustom.... '59 cad front bumper ,late 40's buick grille , flaked roof, fenton hawk wheels w/ drawerpulls and flake on the rim, + matching 5 spoke steering wheel ...shaved door handles ...about 36,000 org. miles but it smokes like a pig......(mmmmmm BAAACOOOONNNNN).... dont know how to do pictures yet so you gotta look up wow thats alotta typing....
  4. Hard to say, because most were built by coachbuilders either from complete cars or chassis sold for conversion. But they made a great many more hearses and ambulances than flower cars.
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  5. Some of those coach builders built El Camino Caddys too. The original Cowboy Cadillacs. Bet they sold some in Texas.
  6. arkiehotrods
    Joined: Mar 9, 2006
    Posts: 5,623


    There's a '57 Caddy flower car in the basement of the Museum of Automobiles on Petit Jean Mountain near Morrilton, Arkansas. The basement is not open to the public, but they allow clubs to tour it when arrangements are made in advance.
    Joined: Feb 22, 2007
    Posts: 847

    from MIAMI

    there is a 53 cadi flower car here local by a board member
  8. CJ Steak
    Joined: Sep 23, 2008
    Posts: 1,378

    CJ Steak
    from Texas

    Mark Campbell at Classic Street here in Taylor always has a couple of those things. I don't think they're that rare, ya just never hear about 'em.
  9. Gotgas
    Joined: Jul 22, 2004
    Posts: 6,766

    from DFW USA

    There is a '58 Cadillac flower car next to a '58 Cadillac hearse in Hurst Texas. They're a little off the road, obviously someone's abandoned restoration projects. I bet they are expensive to restore :D
  10. Ive got lots of pictures of that one. An identical one showed up on ebay a while back. It was located in Canada, completely restored, they were claiming it was one of only two built. Check the Cadillac Lasalle clubs website and you can get production figures for commercial chassis' through the years. It wont give you a breakdown of how many were hearses, flower cars, ambulances, etc, since they were built by other coachbuilders (Eureka, S&S, M&M, etc) but it will tell you how many chassis' were designated for those purposes.

    To answer the original question though, yes thay are rare in terms of numbers. Alot of times there may have only been 8 or 9 hundred chassis' (sometimes more, sometimes less) sent to half a dozen different coachbuilders. Split those up into ambulances, hearses, flower cars (not to mention different models of each one)....and flower cars were the least produced. Doesnt make them heavily desireable in terms of collectibilty since they were built for a specific purpose so prices arent bad at all when you do come across them.
  11. docauto
    Joined: Dec 1, 2006
    Posts: 789

    from So Cal

    I've got a 59, supposed to be 26 made that year.


  12. Yaril
    Joined: Mar 13, 2006
    Posts: 1,001


  13. Sean
    Joined: Mar 4, 2001
    Posts: 718


    Here is Scotty's '60.



  14. Mr Mayo
    Joined: Aug 1, 2008
    Posts: 183

    Mr Mayo
    from Huff, ND

    This may be the site you're referring to:
  15. I'm gonna disagree with those who state they are "not all that rare" Cadillac, on average, would send out about 1,000 chassis per year, give or take. Probably 900-950 would end up as hearses or ambulances (some were combo-cars, but you get the idea), the rest were flower cars and whatever else mightbe built on a Cad chassis. Flower cars are rare, period. The reasons that you still see them are that they were never abused, they cost a LOT of money (as did hearses, but the use was even more limited, hence the casket under the bed option, more use), and they were usually not replaced as often as hearses, owning to less mileage/use.
    Eureka is the coachbuilder that is currently doing flower cars, but I believe the total per year is in the single digits, as I recall.
  16. There is (was?) a surveyor in Kirkland WA for years that had a Cadillac El Camino. Think it was a '64 or '65. The execution was flawless, as though someone had taken the bed out of an Elkie and installed it in the Cad. The rear window treatment was outstanding with glass that curved slightly inward. Definitely not a flower car. I haven't seen his name or the car/truck in several years.
  17. mrbthebarber
    Joined: Mar 19, 2004
    Posts: 169


    Here's a beaut with hearse also seen in the UK this summer.



  18. pasadenahotrod
    Joined: Feb 13, 2007
    Posts: 11,776

    from Texas

    Flower cars often saw service for years, even decades, after their same-year ambulance/hearse counterparts had been sold off because they were of limited use and essentially could not be worn out. They are rarely seen outside of large cities where the well-to-do clientel might justify their purchase since they have the extravagant funerals which require such a specialty vehicle.

    A funeral home in Rosenburg TX still had every hearse they had ever purchased in a very wide garage starting with the 36 Ford hearse. I saw them years ago after selling some parts to the family to get the 36 going for a special burial. They never owned a flower car.
  19. jonzcustomshop
    Joined: Jun 25, 2007
    Posts: 1,927


    thanks for all the info guys, keep it coming!
    here is a cool concept that I found on the r&c website:

    Attached Files:

  20. There was a coach builder in Texas that was making those from coupe devilles, one of the people in the Mt Hood chapter of the Cadillac club had one, they were not flower cars.
  21. beatcad
    Joined: Aug 1, 2006
    Posts: 138


    they may not be as rare as hens teeth, but i would say they are pretty hard to come by.
    i've been a caddy man for years and sure i've seen plenty of pix i've only seen one in person and i do get out a lot.

    i did own a custom made '62 caddy/el camino (not a flower car) that wasnt a coach built car. it was custom made for or by a local dealership in the mid to later 60s i believe.
    i wanted to bring it back to it's original glory, but the more i got into it the custom work was too ruff and to rusted. luckily i they must've just used it for shows or promotion because it had lowww miles and the motor pulled like a som-bitch.
    i only payed 500 clams for it, so i put the eng/trans in my other '62 caddy.
    i wish i has pix of that sucker.
  22. Lstude
    Joined: Sep 27, 2008
    Posts: 173


    This one was at Hershey in 2004

  23. Found this one. Interesting idea but not very HAMB.

    Attached Files:

  24. ALindustrial
    Joined: Aug 7, 2007
    Posts: 852


    never seen one of those before... sopose i learn something new everyday :) cool cars! what do they go for considering they are so "rare"
  25. Lstude
    Joined: Sep 27, 2008
    Posts: 173


    This one was at an auction in Rosemont, NJ last spring.

    Attached Files:

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