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Projects So, let's play a game. Best hot rod or custom for a daily driver?

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by Roothawg, May 18, 2020.

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  1. BamaMav
    Joined: Jun 19, 2011
    Posts: 4,151

    BamaMav
    Member
    from Berry, AL

    A mans got to have a truck! Always something to haul or pull. I’d pick either a 61-65 Chevy or 61-65 Ford. The Chevy rides better with the ifs, but first few years were torsion bars. Both have a good choice of power from straight sixes to small v8’s. Long beds will be cheaper, but can be cut down to short beds if desired. Available in both wide and step side beds. Brakes can be updated pretty cheap using later factory parts, any engine will fit, even big blocks, with room to spare. Aftermarket support for body parts is there.

    I don’t see going wrong with either of them. And though somewhat more rare, there are 4wd versions, too. Great for all year driving in any kind of weather.
     
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  2. Only things I'll add to the list are:
    Modernish OHV V8 that you can get parts for fairly easy, so 60s and newer.
    Seat belts. Preferably 3 point.
    A/C if you live where it gets hot and humid.
    Optional add some sound deadening material makes longer drives nicer.

    My personal preference is a truck like vehicle. The El Caminos are good choice. So is the 63-65 Riviera. I used to daily drive both 59 and 60 El Caminos, and also daily drove a 64 Riviera. All worked good. So was my 37 Chevrolet pickup that was hot rodded. Anything can be made to work, just depends how far from stock original you want.

    Sent from dumb operator on a smart phone
     
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  3. gene-koning
    Joined: Oct 28, 2016
    Posts: 1,818

    gene-koning
    Member

    Can any truly HAMB friendly (all pre 64 parts) really do 20,000 mile a year as a daily driver, driven in all weather conditions? How many guys have recently even put 10,000 miles a year on a truly HAMB friendly car?
    I suppose a guy could do a slightly modified 60-64 version of nearly any car manufactured 15,000 miles a year for a few years before your rebuilding most of it. Asking any vehicle built before 65 to drive 80,000 to 100,000 miles in a 4, 5, or 6 year time span is asking a lot, most pre 65 cars and trucks didn't survive that many miles in that many years when they were new. Your best chance at this is one of the luxury big cars from about the mid to late 50s up to your 65 time frame. The big expensive cars from GM, Ford, Chrysler, or someone that built a car to compete with them, were often built with better stuff the the normal folk factory offerings.

    If you open the deal up to modern chassis under HAMB era body with modern drive train, nearly anything you like can be made to work. Gene
     
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  4. squirrel
    Joined: Sep 23, 2004
    Posts: 46,096

    squirrel
    Member

    there are guys here who have put a lot of miles on cars you probably would not expect would last nearly that long. I put almost 100k on my 55, over 20k on my Chevy II, 50k on the 57 Suburban. Just have to get into the maintenance thing. But it also helps to have more than one to share the load....so when one needs work, you still have a back up to drive while doing the repairs/maintenance.

    My brother only has old cars, and either the Corvair or the 58 Brookwood is working at any given time. And I've put some repair time into both of them over the past 5 years or so. The wagon, he's been driving for 28 years now, with one engine/transmission redo, several rear wheel bearings, brakes, etc.
     
  5. arkiehotrods
    Joined: Mar 9, 2006
    Posts: 5,843

    arkiehotrods
    Member

    I've driven the Nomad more than 300,000 miles in the 29+ years I've owned it. I've driven my '40 Ford coupe every day this year. I work 34 miles from home. One thing both of them have is Newport Engineering windshield wipers.
    I have hauled all kinds of things in the Nomad, including a complete 1941 Gilbarco gas pump.
     
  6. anthony myrick
    Joined: Sep 4, 2009
    Posts: 5,730

    anthony myrick
    Member

    2 main reasons newer engines last longer than the average old engine.
    Better oil and EFI.
    Won’t discuss un HAMB friendly EFI options. But oil and bearing materials have improved.
    We’re car guys here. Doing the regular maintenance that an old car requires is one reason a lot of us like em. Greasing the car, checking points, adjusting the carb....... All fun old car stuff.
    Driving 10k a year on an old ride is easy. I’ve done it for years.
    Put a million miles on straight axles. Simple and easy. Last forever.
    A manual trans, keep some dope in it and don’t power shift and they will last forever.
    But parts with lifetime warranties and swapem out every 5 years or so.
    However, they are not like my wife’s Accord. 130k and only oil changes and one trans service. And I’m glad. That’s boring.
     
    Last edited: May 19, 2020
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  7. I drove my 37 daily as it was my only vehicle besides a bicycle for 5 years. BBC TH400 12bolt.

    Pros: I built it and loved it. It was fast and fun and the only one around like it. Had a huge heater in it from a semi truck so it would defrost the windshield even without vents.
    Cons, no ac and single vacuum wiper was not great. Didn't notice it much back then, but now I want some better wiper setup.

    Next one was an OT 72 Monte Carlo BBC TH350 and 2.73 12 bolt. Drove it all over, great car. Got rearended and totaled it.

    Also drove my stock 62 corvair daily for app 5 years as well. Another fun ride, it had the same issues as the rest, hot in the summer with no ac and cold in the winter with little to no heat and defrost was non existent. As long as i drove it regularly I had no driveability issues, once I let it set for a coupe weeks, it would take some work to get it back to running nice.

    Next was another OT, 68 Chevy 4x4 It got a few mods, disc brake front being the main one. It has performed it's job well. Only thing that would be really nice on it would be AC.

    I have a kid now, so I hate to admit it, but something with 4 doors would be handy. I'd like to try a 59 Chevy wagon, but doubt I'll ever get to.
     
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  8. A Boner
    Joined: Dec 25, 2004
    Posts: 5,576

    A Boner
    Member

    With a $20,000.00 budget, it would probably be a good idea to also have a beater winter car if you live in the salty part of the country.
     
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  9. RJP
    Joined: Oct 5, 2005
    Posts: 1,528

    RJP
    Member
    from PNW

    I put 76,000 miles on one of my 64 El Caminos in a year. That year I was doing gun shows and pretty much lived out of the car. Ate, slept and conducted business out of it. Went through three sets of tires, and drove it in all kinds of weather. I was earning my living with it, so major break downs were not going to cut it. Religious maintenance, and paying attention was the key. Sure, I had break downs, but nothing that lasted more than a day.
     
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  10. Hot Rods Ta Hell
    Joined: Apr 20, 2008
    Posts: 4,059

    Hot Rods Ta Hell
    Member

    I think the $20k budget would be tough to meet for some cars such as Tri fives, once you make the initial purchase, buy all the parts, and do the build-even doing all the work yourself.
    I'd stretch the $20k/20k miles goal to try to also achieve 20 MPG.

    My 20/20/20 build;


    I'd home build a 62-65 Chevy II. Baseline model, 2 dr. sedan, doing my own work. 283/powerglide (maybe a 5 speed!). Nothing trick; updated ignition system, used/hand me down, cleaned up intake, air cleaner and valve covers would be the only eye candy. Rams horns, black plug wires. Lots of semi black for the engine compartment. Might have to 'downgrade' to a 2 barrel later to meet 20 MPG goal, though I think it's achievable with the SBC.
    Do my own bodywork and single stage garage paint (el cheapo fleet paint). No stainless side trim on the base model saves work and money. Though all the trim and bits can be catalog ordered all day long, that'll blow the budget real quick. This is a sweat equity gig. Self restored or good used takeoff grille, taillights, etc will work. Looking at pics on the web, I did run across a sale for a pair of new chrome bumpers for $300.

    I'd rebuild the front suspension and invest in some good shocks on all 4 corners. Lower it 2-3" and run steelies/caps.
    For interior comfort on 20k miles, I'd work all the interior surfaces with generic Dynamat. Beef up the seat with some modern day foam. Install the seat cover, door panels and carpet myself to save coin. Maybe deep six the back seat, go the business coupe route. I'd definitely add A/C. Manual everything including windows to keep it simple. Maybe upgrade to front discs.

    Pro's: they're good looking, light, compact, ride decent and have great driving visibility. Parts are plentiful (new or used) and they're reliable and easy to work on.

    Cons: short wheelbase may not ride as well as a longer, heavier car.
     
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  11. Roothawg
    Joined: Mar 14, 2001
    Posts: 19,712

    Roothawg
    Member

    I can attest to this. His Nomad is everywhere.
     
  12. Moriarity
    Joined: Apr 11, 2001
    Posts: 18,086

    Moriarity
    SUPER MODERATOR
    Staff Member

    one thing that would wreck it for me is the fact that I would refuse to drive a classic car through the salty slop we have for 4-5 months every winter....
     
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  13. Roothawg
    Joined: Mar 14, 2001
    Posts: 19,712

    Roothawg
    Member

    Yeah, you need to move. I’ll bring my trailer.
     
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  14. Moriarity
    Joined: Apr 11, 2001
    Posts: 18,086

    Moriarity
    SUPER MODERATOR
    Staff Member

    haha, I like it here.....
     
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  15. haha, I like it here.....

    That's what my brother always said about (aboot) Sioux Falls, until the Army gave him a winter vacation in Texas,,,
     
  16. Los_Control
    Joined: Oct 7, 2016
    Posts: 661

    Los_Control
    Member
    from TX

    That gave me a smile :) for me I am a truck or van guy, no use for cars in my stable.
    And my avatar will be my perfect daily driver. I live in a small town, I drive 6 blocks to the grocery store, hardware store or auto parts ... ashamed to say my ot daily driver chevy truck, tank of gas can last 4 months.
    This ol dodge will be perfect for what I do.

    0519201039.jpg
     
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  17. ekimneirbo
    Joined: Apr 29, 2017
    Posts: 1,095

    ekimneirbo
    Member
    from Brooks Ky

    If its going to be a daily driver/or work commute vehicle and the main mode of your transportation, then it has to be some form of a truck. The wife/girlfriend/whatever can have the family car.
    No matter what you do, everyone has to haul things on occasion. Any Chevy or Ford pickup from 1947 to 1965 can often be found cheaply. Parts are easily available. You can build it for any style you want. Oh, and did I mention........... You can haul stuff!:D
     
  18. anthony myrick
    Joined: Sep 4, 2009
    Posts: 5,730

    anthony myrick
    Member

    You salt guys could build a fiberglass winter car.
    Wonder if brookville would stamp a stainless body?
    Just be careful driving faster than 88mph.
     
    Last edited: May 19, 2020
  19. Automotive Stud
    Joined: Sep 26, 2004
    Posts: 4,035

    Automotive Stud
    Member

    I know this is the wrong forum, but I've thought I could throw together a street beast or something for less than a used mustang and have a pretty neat daily driver. Wouldn't have to worry about rain or salt or anything. But I think a pickup/el camino would be a better choice for me.
     
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  20. lincolnlog
    Joined: Feb 25, 2007
    Posts: 185

    lincolnlog
    Member
    from Arizona

    I daily drove the 51' Lincoln in my avatar for most of 2007 in Phoenix, AZ... can't say I'd recommend it with that one.
     
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  21. No vega box....changed the "bushing" 50 box for a 1954 chevy "bearing" box.....100% better and it was a bolt-in.
     
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  22. RJP
    Joined: Oct 5, 2005
    Posts: 1,528

    RJP
    Member
    from PNW

    Fiberglass cars and salt? Ask the many Vette owners with rusted out frames how well their fiberglass car held up....
     
  23. Roothawg
    Joined: Mar 14, 2001
    Posts: 19,712

    Roothawg
    Member

    I think he was being facetious.
     
  24. 63-66 Lincoln Continental convertible, bagged
     
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  25. A Boner
    Joined: Dec 25, 2004
    Posts: 5,576

    A Boner
    Member

    Actually lots of people drive $60,000.00+ pickup trucks all year round here, in the SALT. In 10 years, they depreciate down to $20,000.00 or whatever. Build a $30,000.00 Tupperware 32 coupe, drive it for 10 years, freshen it up a little, and it would still be worth more than the pickup truck.
    A local drove a 32 Tupperware coupe year round....had a shop with a floor drain and had a kid wash it after every use.....it was a nice car, mini- supercharged SBC, chrome 9” ect. It eventually got rear ended in a snow storm, and totaled. Insurance bought him another that he drives now!
    A model A Tupperware coupe with a stainless frame, probably would work and cost less that most new Detroit, Japan, and Korea complicated crap!
    Some of those Corvetts with rusted frames are 70 years old! The Roadster Shop and Morrison can/have solved that problem too.
     
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  26. 49ratfink
    Joined: Feb 8, 2004
    Posts: 17,690

    49ratfink
    Member
    from California

    what if you don't want to drive old cars every day in a world full of morons?
    my old cars are for fun. driving to work in one would not be fun. drove my 61 Dodge Fremont to Oakland every day for 3 years because it was all I had. this was 20 years ago, before traffic here became INSANE. it was not fun.
     
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  27. Rogue_Rider
    Joined: Aug 8, 2017
    Posts: 6

    Rogue_Rider
    Member
    from Colorado

    You nailed it! My neighbor has one for sale, pretty sure it's a '59 and every time I drive by it I think about how cool it would be to fix it up into a daily driving family wagon. Only thing that would kill me would be actually driving it in all the mag chloride :( that stuff sticks to everything and it just eats non galvanized metal in no time.

    The great thing about the Willys is they're still afforadable!
    https://www.facebook.com/marketplace/item/2890280984426382

    Although I'm more partial to the pickup trucks:
    [​IMG]

    I also 100% agree on the chassis swap! These things ride ROUGH (at least my '66 CJ5 did). They're pretty small and I'm not sure how it'd look on a K-5 chassis, I think a finding an LJ (TJ Unlimited) might be the perfect chassis because it's still a Jeep and there's like unlimited aftermarket support. Fining a donor might not be that easy though...
     
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  28. sunbeam
    Joined: Oct 22, 2010
    Posts: 4,847

    sunbeam
    Member

    Last edited: May 20, 2020
  29. Moriarity
    Joined: Apr 11, 2001
    Posts: 18,086

    Moriarity
    SUPER MODERATOR
    Staff Member

    I used the search google for image and found this car was for sale at collectors dream cars in Las Vegas for 24,957 dollars. what you found there is a scam ad with stolen pictures. If it looks and sounds too good to be true it usually is....
    https://www.google.com/imgres?imgur...hUKEwjHjqvszsLpAhWRnJ4KHTprDYEQMygAegUIARDBAQ
     
  30. Not that many years ago I drove a 65 Valiant daily, winter in the mountains I mean daily. Made several 500mile weekend trips in that car. Even drove it daily in the big city with 9” drum brakes and despite what many will tell you, I didn’t even die or kill anyone. I drive my off topic 68 Chrysler everywhere and anywhere for three seasons of the year.


    Oh yea, both cars are drum brakes and single circuit brakes. Eeeeeeek!!!!!

    I built my Fargo with drums and single circuit master as well. Makes me feel like a hoodlum.


    Sent from my iPhone using H.A.M.B.
     
    Last edited: May 20, 2020
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