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Motion Pictures How can Steve Bolander afford a 1958 Impala custom?

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by jazzfidelity, Nov 23, 2011.

  1. jazzfidelity
    Joined: Sep 19, 2011
    Posts: 371


    Maybe this has already been run through the HAMB wringer, but this question came up for debate during a recent American Graffiti discussion, so pardon the cynicism (and killjoyness of it all), but.. How does a 17 year old high school senior named Steve Bolander afford a 1958 Chevy Impala which is a model that is only 4 years old and that most parents would either still be driving or at least considering trading to the OK Cars lot for a newer model, and how does he also afford to have the chrome rims, tuck and roll upholstery, custom taillights, twin pipes, and the car emblems and name plates shaved? Or did they just plain think we wouldn't notice?

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  2. 49ratfink
    Joined: Feb 8, 2004
    Posts: 17,783

    from California

    Mom and Pop. the same people who are sending him to college.
  3. 47chevycoupe
    Joined: Dec 25, 2007
    Posts: 525


    The same way I had a 68 Camaro and a 79 4X4 pickup in high school. Worked my tail off from about age 12.............

    P.S. High School was in the early 80's
    Last edited: Nov 23, 2011
  4. jazzfidelity
    Joined: Sep 19, 2011
    Posts: 371


    yeah that's probably the most obvious guess, still it's hard to figure parents would drop that kind of 1962 bread on a 17 year old kid..
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  5. ronk16
    Joined: Mar 27, 2010
    Posts: 351


    a buck went alot farther back then, technology was expensive and labor was cheap, today labor is way over priced and tech is dirt cheap.
  6. BCR
    Joined: Dec 11, 2005
    Posts: 1,263


    Same way a few kids in our class drove brand new cars, still nursing!
  7. striper
    Joined: Mar 22, 2005
    Posts: 4,482


    It was a movie.
  8. pastlane
    Joined: Oct 4, 2007
    Posts: 1,065


    It belonged to his older brother Chuck. Handed down to Steve when Chuck went to college on a basketball scholarship. ;)
  9. arkiehotrods
    Joined: Mar 9, 2006
    Posts: 5,843


    The Impala would have been a 4-yr-old, not very popular car. I bought my first car, a 7 yr old Caprice, in 1973 for $500 (2 dr hdtp, 396, buckets, console, gauge package, etc). That was in 1973 dollars. I '58 Impala bought in '62 would likely have gone for less than that.

    1958 Chevrolets, Impalas included, didn't really start appreciating until the 1980s. I can remember a number of '58 Impalas for sale in Tulsa in the 70s priced at anywhere from $100 to a high of $1500 for a really nice one

    Back in the 60s, everyone wanted a 55, 56, or 57. The 58s were just seen as big, heavy boats. Only in retrospect did they become a hot item (the few '58 customs that were built being the exception that proves the rule).
    Kevs56 likes this.
  10. davidvillajr
    Joined: Apr 4, 2005
    Posts: 840


    I miss Chuck...

    never came back down those stairs did he?
  11. bobbyd08
    Joined: Sep 30, 2008
    Posts: 202

    from md

    In 1959 I bought a '56 Austin Healey with money from a paper route I had for years I was 17 at the time & drove it thru high school. I decided to join the Army in late '61 & wanted to leave my mom a car she could drive & it just so happened that a friend of a friend had a '58 Impala that he wanted to trade me even up, which I did. Unfortunetly it was a 348 cu in. with three on the floor with a 456 rear end & was slammed on the ground. Needless to say mom never drove it. :rolleyes:


  12. LMAO, you are getting confused with Happy Days.

    My answer, good writers.
  13. Cadillacjerk
    Joined: Nov 16, 2010
    Posts: 93


    Happy Days was derived from American Graffiti...
  14. Hot Rods Ta Hell
    Joined: Apr 20, 2008
    Posts: 4,080

    Hot Rods Ta Hell

    Happy Days was actually spawned from an episode of Love American Style.

    Bolander made it happen the way young kids do nowadays. The parents or grandparents paid for it-so long as his grades stayed up and he went to college.
  15. Blue One
    Joined: Feb 6, 2010
    Posts: 10,583

    Blue One
    from Alberta

    At least he didn't do it like the little punk assed wanna be gangsters we see up here driving new high dollar Mercedes AMG cars bought with their drug money.

    I see them running aroung with their friends wearing their ball caps backwards and doing their best to look "bad" :rolleyes:
  16. jazzfidelity
    Joined: Sep 19, 2011
    Posts: 371


    not a derivation.. same time frame (1973ish) and same lead actor Ronny Howard, HD had a Cindy Williams (Shirley Feeney) appearance, but it was not a derivation..
  17. gas pumper
    Joined: Aug 13, 2007
    Posts: 2,952

    gas pumper

    In 66 I bought a 58 delray 2 dr sedan, v-8. $35. 35,000 mile car that was worn out. 55-56-57's were hundreds even as high as 1,200$. It was a no brainer to me, but nobody else wanted 58's back then.
    Joined: Apr 6, 2009
    Posts: 81


    george lucas bought it for him
  19. Could be the same way a buddy of mine did in high school. His ol' man owned the local Chevy dealership.

  20. Cadillacjerk
    Joined: Nov 16, 2010
    Posts: 93


    from the same likely source as yours (wikipedia):

    "Internet reviewer MaryAnn Johanson acknowledged that American Graffiti rekindled public and entertainment interest in the 1950s and 1960s and influenced other films such as The Lords of Flatbush (1974) and Cooley High (1975) and the TV series Happy Days.<sup id="cite_ref-42" class="reference"></sup><sup id="cite_ref-San_16-6" class="reference"></sup>

    <sup id="cite_ref-San_16-6" class="reference"></sup>
    <sup id="cite_ref-San_16-6" class="reference">
  21. Master of None
    Joined: Dec 18, 2009
    Posts: 2,279

    Master of None

    Because he just got $2000 dollars from the moose lodge?
  22. tfeverfred
    Joined: Nov 11, 2006
    Posts: 15,795


    Don't say that around Mr. Lucas! In taped interviews, he's adament that Happy Days was NOT a spinoff of American Graffiti. The way he speaks of it sounds like he hates the connection.

    Now, as to the original question. Notice Steves look. He's a prep. He's not a greaser. He's not wearing jeans and a t-shirt (like Milner). He's wearing what look like Hagger slacks and a button down shirt. Penny loafers, not sneakers. That along with the fact that he's going to college without the benefit of a scholarship (in a time when going to college was rare), while Kurt was dependent on one. Notice his sister. The Homecomming Queen and head cheerleader. She's a prep as well and also has a car (Edsel:confused:). This kids parents had money and they bought him the car. Since Milner is a buddy, Milner fixed it up and Steves parents footed the bill for that too.

    Now... I'll sit back and wonder why I fu*kin' care.:confused:
  23. At 14 I had the equivalent (we can drive at 14 up here in daylight hours, nevermind I worked at the Dog Track and worked until 2am at times)and worked my ass off for it! AND I paid my way through college by working for my Uncle!
  24. GassersGarage
    Joined: Jul 1, 2007
    Posts: 4,729


    Bought by parents. We had a 16 year old kid crash his brand new paper plated Mercedes C230 a few years ago. His Uncle showed up and said, "I told his parents not to buy him a new car. Kids always crash their first car".
  25. falconwagon62
    Joined: Mar 17, 2006
    Posts: 1,433


    That was Happy Days......heeeyyyyyyyy.....
  26. Neglected Legacies
    Joined: Apr 22, 2009
    Posts: 80

    Neglected Legacies
    from Nor Cal

    He bought it cheap because all that customizing took away it's resale value. I got that argument whenever I would try to "customize" my parent's car...
  27. NORSON
    Joined: Jan 19, 2009
    Posts: 465


    Bought my first '55 chev in '62 for $425 my second in '63 for $725 and a '64 Chevelle 2dr. wagon 283 4spd. for $1500 in '67.
  28. A friend of mine had a 57 Ford, 312, dual quads, cam, headers, chrome wheels, TJ tuck and roll, nice custom metallic green paint in 64. Paid for it working at a gas station and his uncle's machine shop. It wasn't that hard. Living at home, no bills, usually no insurance. Everything you made could go into the car. Gas cost nothing. A quart of Raylube was a dime. We would chip in, throw 5 bucks worth in the tank and hit the road
  29. RDR
    Joined: May 30, 2009
    Posts: 1,352


    Back in those days there were actually JOBS that a guy could get in the summer to buy school clothes and '58 Chevys....
    I worked the summer of '60 in the pea harvest and made $ 800..
    summer of '61 planting lawns in a housing development and made $1200...

    a new '58 Impala was under $3000
    a 4 year old one in '62 was lucky to bring $1200

    bought my first '49 Chev 2dr sedan in '58 for $100
    bought a '49 Fleetline in '59, a nice mild custom for $ 250....

    My high school buddy and I would pick up beer bottles where the local college partiers would toss them....take them in for a penny apiece and buy about 4 gallons of gas at 25 cents a gal, and sit at A&W eating a burger,fries, and root beer...all on our beer bottle haul
  30. My '58 Rambler had a bunch of old newspapers in it so I looked over the car classifieds from 1963 or 1964 for amusement. The one that sticks in my memory is you could have bought a '57 Chrysler 300D (or 300E) with the big hemi - and a convertible at that - for $1500 from a dealer here in the city. The usual stuff about it being a low milage cream puff, but hell, those weren't cheap cars new.

    Even going back to '62 I don't see a '58 Impala, used, being much more than that, if that much. The labor for the custom work wouldn't be that bad, either.

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