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Hot Rods Styling help - 37 Packard.

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by BuiltFerComfort, Apr 29, 2016.

  1. BuiltFerComfort
    Joined: Jan 24, 2007
    Posts: 1,620

    BuiltFerComfort
    Member

    So there's this 1937 Packard 115 on the Philly Craigslist. I'm probably not buying it, but it got me thinking. I'm wondering what HAMBers think of shortening a car to improve looks/function.

    Stock it's a bit staid and old fashioned. Restored car : [​IMG]

    I love the grill on these and some of the body lines- American Luxury as of 1937. CL car:
    [​IMG]

    But it's a long, narrow 37 sedan. I was looking at Bantam coupes and got an idea. (I can't fit in those - I'm 6'5" - but I like the look)

    I shortened the car, made it a 2-door (lengthened front door), moved the rear axle and fender back. Would this work?
    [​IMG]

    This would let me put the seat in a comfy position, let me keep a small trunk, etc. - styling like an oversized Bantam but a 2-seater. I like it, but I'm a novice and wanted feedback. Especially curious if anyone has built something like this.
     
  2. Not an improvement IMO.... I'd shorten the wheelbase about the amount of the 'bustle trunk', then eliminate the bustle, dropping the rear of the body down from the roof like a more conventional sedan.
     
    cretin likes this.
  3. JJK
    Joined: Feb 9, 2005
    Posts: 869

    JJK
    Member

    Looks too English shortened.
     
  4. BuiltFerComfort
    Joined: Jan 24, 2007
    Posts: 1,620

    BuiltFerComfort
    Member

    Like a slant back 37 Ford? That might work better, but I like the idea of some trunk space.

    I like the English styling of Austin, Bantam, etc. I'm not sure I hit the mark though.
     

  5. BuiltFerComfort
    Joined: Jan 24, 2007
    Posts: 1,620

    BuiltFerComfort
    Member

    [​IMG]

    That is with trunk removed, but wheelbase still moved back. Looks worse to me.
     
  6. Barn Find
    Joined: Feb 2, 2013
    Posts: 2,320

    Barn Find
    Member
    from Missouri

    Leave the wheel base alone. Shorten body. Lengthen hood. Move bustle forward so it sits inboard of rear fenders.

    You should be able to get all that done in an afternoon, right?
     
    302GMC likes this.
  7. BuiltFerComfort
    Joined: Jan 24, 2007
    Posts: 1,620

    BuiltFerComfort
    Member

    There are some 8-cyl models with longer hoods... Maybe a long weekend... Ha.
     
  8. Stu D Baker
    Joined: Mar 4, 2005
    Posts: 2,620

    Stu D Baker
    Member
    from Illinois

    Proportions are everything. :confused:
     
    Hnstray likes this.
  9. BuiltFerComfort
    Joined: Jan 24, 2007
    Posts: 1,620

    BuiltFerComfort
    Member

    Exactly. Some people have "the eye" to know just what's wrong with styling, but I'm not one of them. My version is not bad but somehow not quite right, hence this thread.
     
  10. bubba55
    Joined: Feb 27, 2011
    Posts: 348

    bubba55
    Member

    With what you've done - I think it's the front fenders that looks out of whack - just my 2c worth
     
  11. From stock, lower it, moderate top chop, dark color, Done!
     
  12. wsdad
    Joined: Dec 31, 2005
    Posts: 1,255

    wsdad
    Member

    I love it! Turns a four door sporty. It would be interesting to see a picture of a Bantam coupe right below it to compare. I didn't like one without the bustle.
     
  13. BuiltFerComfort
    Joined: Jan 24, 2007
    Posts: 1,620

    BuiltFerComfort
    Member

    I'm too tall for chopped cars. Packard made a coupe I like, it's very long though. And pricey - the CL sedan is $8500, coupes are 3 to 5 times as much.
     
  14. BuiltFerComfort
    Joined: Jan 24, 2007
    Posts: 1,620

    BuiltFerComfort
    Member

    [​IMG]

    Here's a pic off another thread or maybe ebay. Not sure of the year on this, I thin around 1940.
     
  15. wsdad
    Joined: Dec 31, 2005
    Posts: 1,255

    wsdad
    Member

    ImageUploadedByH.A.M.B.1461965732.823658.jpg
    ImageUploadedByH.A.M.B.1461965749.921780.jpg

    I think it's perfectly proportioned. I like the long hood and short back. The length of the spare tire on the Bantam is replaced by the bustle on the Packard.
     

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  16. mgtstumpy
    Joined: Jul 20, 2006
    Posts: 8,365

    mgtstumpy
    Member

    Please don't, you will regret it later and ruin the car. What about just converting it into a humpback tudor, a lot of work and more aesthetically pleasing. IMH you don't want to detract from the quintessential and unique Packard grill and lines.
     
  17. adam401
    Joined: Dec 27, 2007
    Posts: 2,281

    adam401
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    Some cars are just antique cars that look best stock. Not all cars are hot rods and when you try to force them to be they look terrible. This is one of those cars but it's cool.
     
    Hnstray, Barn Find and Moondog13 like this.
  18. Stu D Baker
    Joined: Mar 4, 2005
    Posts: 2,620

    Stu D Baker
    Member
    from Illinois

    [​IMG]

    For some reason, I'm thinking clown car. :(
     
    Hnstray likes this.
  19. southerncad
    Joined: Feb 5, 2008
    Posts: 751

    southerncad
    Member

    Quite simply the changes you suggest do change the car from a Classic vehicle
    to a Buttuggllyy vehicle.
     
    Hnstray and lurker mick like this.
  20. Mr48chev
    Joined: Dec 28, 2007
    Posts: 27,907

    Mr48chev
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    Outside of the need to make this one a tad more Hamb Friendly by changing the seats and wheels I'd say it serves as an example that the 37 Packard in question doesn't need a bunch of body changes it just needs a good lowering job to get a nice stance.
    [​IMG]
     
    Jet96, abe lugo and kiwijeff like this.
  21. No, please don't. As someone who grew up around and adores Packards, if you must customize it, go the route of this '39 120 sedan that was in Street Rodder a few years ago: dump it, install a modern drivetrain, update the interior, and call it good.

    0906sr_05_z+1939_packard_sedan+driver_side.jpg
     
  22. Try shortening the body without moving the wheelbase
     
  23. RainierHooker
    Joined: Dec 20, 2011
    Posts: 2,018

    RainierHooker
    Member
    from Tacoma, WA

    Please don't. A Packard was never meant to be sporty, it was made to be classy.
     
    Hnstray and soddruntlestuntle like this.
  24. chriseakin
    Joined: Jan 21, 2009
    Posts: 353

    chriseakin
    Member

    I think it looks good lowered and leave the body the same length but channel it a bit - 3-4 inches.
     
  25. wsdad
    Joined: Dec 31, 2005
    Posts: 1,255

    wsdad
    Member

    Nor was a Model T ever meant to have a blown V8 but it sure seems like an improvement.
     
    kiwijeff likes this.
  26. mike bowling
    Joined: Jan 1, 2013
    Posts: 3,547

    mike bowling
    Member

    Like my daughter said when I sliced and diced a coupe a few years ago " Gee Daddy, if you didn't like that car, why did you buy it?"
    Find a back end from a coupe, and turn it into a high class tail dragger
     
  27. john walker
    Joined: Sep 11, 2008
    Posts: 1,117

    john walker
    Member

    2dr conversion. Move rear roof forward, 3 window coupe style. Lengthen doors a bit. Coupe rear body section. Easy :)
     
  28. john walker
    Joined: Sep 11, 2008
    Posts: 1,117

    john walker
    Member

  29. theHIGHLANDER
    Joined: Jun 3, 2005
    Posts: 8,093

    theHIGHLANDER
    Member

    In spite of every attempt to take a depression era Packard into hot rod territory, ALL that I've ever seen failed miserably. Early cars can "speedster", but it better be incomplete before you try to speedster an open car or it's like throwing all of your money out the window on a freeway. I get what you wanna do but it's not working. All the windows have dedicated body reveals so you're almost stuck with em. Even those 2 that were done up as shown above, eeew... Someone else said it, leave it be. If you must, look up European body styles and go "coachbuilt" instead of hot rod. This one worked so well it's just short of a sexual experience: IMG_20150314_142620556.jpg IMG_20150314_142635634.jpg
    IMG_20150314_142643638.jpg
     
    Hnstray, dana barlow, Jet96 and 9 others like this.

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