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"Non-Collectible" Old Cars



  • speedshiftspeedshift Posts: 1,598
    Says here Rambler almost beat Plymouth for #3 in 1960, and did in 1961. However, Rambler's success was due to its compacts and by '62 everyone else was cranking out trainloads of Falcons, Novas etc. so by 1967 Rambler was number 12. Probably the same thing happened with the Studebaker Lark, a compact they cobbled together for '59 that bought Stude a few years until the big three jumped into that market.

    Pontiac took over #3 in 1962 when (one can surmise) the market was leaving economy for performance--Pontiac sold many more full-sizers than compacts. In fact '62 was the first year for the Grand Prix, a big sales success that may have put them over the top.

    I think it's the full-size Mopars that are so forgettable. First, they didn't sell that many and second, styling in the early '60s swerved from No Holds Barred Exner to Official Repudiation of Exner. There really wasn't a steadily evolving styling theme, no consistent brand identity that made you say, "Yup that's a Dodge". I couldn't begin to tell you what a '62 Dodge looks like and that's absolutely amazing.

    Sounds like your mother's Rambler's axle shaft broke, probably from all the wheelies she was pulling ;-).
  • Someone mentioned Datsun B210s above...I like those weird looking things. I still have a few of the odd "turtle shell" B210 wheelcovers in stock (I'm in the used hubcap business, and I have just about everything back to 1970). I wonder if there are any B210s left to put them on?

    The 1977 Celica project is coming along well. Today I finished the cooling system overhaul, replacing the radiator, cap, hoses, transmission lines, clamps, thermostat, and coolant all with new parts. Everything went together well and it doesn't seem to have sprung any leaks. I also replaced two rubber fuel lines after one burst a few days ago, spraying gasoline all over the engine. Fortunately, no fire. Next up is a transmission service and brake overhaul. After those are done, it should be mechanically sound and reliable. Then it's just more body work (RUST!) and replacement of various cosmetic trim parts. Hopefully all will go well...
    -Andrew L
  • speedshiftspeedshift Posts: 1,598
    I have about 20 hubcaps from the '60s, not mint but certainly good enough to put on a driver. Pontiac, Cougar, Chevy etc. What's the best way to get rid of them? About how much are they worth wholesale?
  • Speedshift-

    My hubcap business is no longer in full swing since I'm now a college student. I made most of my sales online while I was in high school, but since I can't bring all 4,000 hubcaps to college with me, I'm limited to selling on eBay, or locally when I'm home. So anyway, I would buy yours myself, but I already have lots of hubcaps and not enough time to sell them. I recommend that you clean them up and list them on eBay. If you need any help identifying caps for listing purposes, send pics to [email protected] and I'll do my best.

    -Andrew L
  • speedshiftspeedshift Posts: 1,598
    Thanks for the quick response and the offer. I think I'll just wholesale them locally. If they're selling for about $20 retail I think I'll be lucky to get $5 but at least I'll free up garage space.
  • speedshift-

    The value of classic ('50s, '60s, '70s) caps varies a lot depending on what vehicles they're for. In most cases, wholesaling them for $5 each is reasonable. But if you have anything with a "spinner" center on it, or anything Mustang, Corvette, Chevy SS, or any five-spoke "mag type" covers, they could be worth quite a bit, so it might be a good idea to do a little research before you let them go cheap. Good luck.

    -Andrew L
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Sonoma, CaliforniaPosts: 64,490
    Hey, somebody should start a "mystery hubcap" topic! Post a photo and let us guess!
  • speedshiftspeedshift Posts: 1,598
    Yes, and the first person to guess correctly has to buy the hubcap. My photos will be up in a few days ;-).
  • speedshiftspeedshift Posts: 1,598
    Andrew, you got me nervous so I went out and checked my stash.

    2 1958 Pontiac full wheelcovers
    2 1955 Buick " "
    3 1964 Wildcat standard
    1 1965 Riviera wire spinner (some wires damaged)
    3 1963 Olds spinners
    1 1964 SS spinner (some damage)
    4 1966 Wildcat standard
    3 1965 Riviera standard

    Plus one 1960 Corvair soupbowl I'll keep because it was about the only thing left from my first car after I totaled it.

    Not to mention four '68 Cougar ultra-rare spinners I sold to a dealer about a year ago for $5 each. Not much about Cougars is hot so I can't imagine they were either, although he did seem a little too happy.
  • Speedshift-

    Too bad the Riviera spinner cap is damaged; that would be a good one if it were mint. The only other thing that caught my eye are the 1963 Oldsmobile spinners. I'm not sure which style that is (I'm not too great with caps before 1970), but if they're in nice shape, it might be worth ebaying them to see if they bring more money then you expected. It seems like anything with a spinner brings big money on ebay. I got about $25 for a fairly beat-up 1966 Mustang spinner cap awhile ago. Other than that, I would go ahead and sell them for $5 each if you have a buyer.


    I'd be glad to participate in a hubcap contest, but I'm not so good with the ones before 1970, and especially before 1960. But I'd do my best, and without sneaking a peek at the interchange book :-)

    -Andrew L
  • I was looking through my 73-87 chevy truck catalog(LMC Truck), they want 50$ per hubcap! Atleast mine are in really awesome condition, probably could use some chrome polish though.

    Everyone always gives me a hard time for having hubcaps, but I think original hubcaps look really nice.
  • speedshiftspeedshift Posts: 1,598
    Yeah, the mag and styled steel wheel thing has been done to death ;-). I think soupbowl hubcaps look really good on a truck.

    Andrew, I think I'm going to try peddling my hubcaps on eBay. Sounds like you had good luck.
  • I don't know why I think they look so great, they have a quite dignity about them, the chrome bow-tie hubcaps are about the best hubcaps I've seen on trucks, of course I'm partial
  • Speedshift-
    I've found that the trick to getting lots of bids on eBay hubcaps (and all eBay items, for that matter) is to include photos, give detailed descriptions, and have a reasonable starting price ($5 is probably good for a decent hubcap). But you never know what will sell...I've had some caps sell much higher than I expected, and others I can't get rid of at any price. Good luck!

    Do you have the large aluminum dog-dish caps on your Chevy? Those are nice looking if you keep them clean, but they do not stay on well at all. I have about 20-25 of them in stock, all of which I found on the road. In general, I too prefer original wheels/hubcaps over aftermarket wheels. I especially dislike alloy wheels on passenger cars, because they always come with low-profile tires that allow them to get damaged easily. My Pontiac still has the original 15" steel wheels with stainless full wheelcovers and whitewalls. It looks old-fashioned, but so does the whole car. I would never consider changing them. I can attest to the durability of big tires and steel wheels, because I've hit all kinds of potholes, driven over curbs, etc. in my efforts to retrieve hubcaps from busy NJ highways, and I have never had a tire or wheel failure. On the other hand, I've seen many people stranded on the highway with 2 flats and 2 cracked alloy wheels due to slamming a deep pothole. I would rather lose a hubcap than destroy a tire and wheel any day :-)

    -Andrew L
  • ndancendance Posts: 323
    and since hardly anyone owns real 'mags' (although I did have a set of magnesium Minilites on a Boss Mustang at one time).

    I'm really pro-steel wheel. I've had quite a few sets made up to a specified width/offset. I don't think they are heavier (if anything lighter) than most aluminum wheels. Tire machines are easier on them. They bend in accidents rather than breaking. The quality level (balance, out of round) can be good or bad on both types, so that's a wash. The one advantage I can think of on most aluminum wheels is the ability to have goofy shapes cast up.

    It wouldn't suprise me if the best aluminum wheels are better than the best steel wheels, but it would bug the heck out of me to pay $750 a corner.
  • speedshiftspeedshift Posts: 1,598
    A friend of mine showed me how he could scrape material off a real magnesium wheel and light the scrapings on fire. This sounds dumb and I imagine it is.
  • They are about two inches deep.

    Well I have hit some potholes where I was thanking god my a-arms didn't bend or snap, of course at 70 my trucks starts getting a interesting feel to it, but I don't think that is the wheels think it just isn't designed for freeway, plus all the busings have 340,000+ on them so eventually I'm going to put some energy suspension bushings on them.
  • andre1969andre1969 Posts: 23,496
    One old car I've always had a fondness for, even though they were flops in the marketplace, and only available for a few years, was the Mopar R-body. They were only built from 1979-81, and were Chrysler's last gasp at the true, full-size market.

    Anyway, if you're interested, check out . I posted a few pics there of a '79 New Yorker 5th Avenue that I recently bought. There's also a pic of my '57 DeSoto in there, if anybody's interested. Eventually, I'm gonna try to get the whole fleet online...

    As for the R-bodies, they were a hasty response to GM's wildly successful downsized B- and C-bodies of 1977. Ford was also a few years late to that game, as they didn't downsize their Crown Vics and Grand Marquis models until 1979, and the Lincolns until 1980! To make the R-body, Chrysler mainly just took their intermediate B-body (the Furys, Monacos, Coronets, etc that we so commonly saw crunched up on the "A-Team" or the "Dukes of Hazzard"), and heavily reworked it. Mechanically they were the same...engines, suspensions, rear-ends, etc, but they were given a much more creased, angular look. They were a lot lighter than the cars they replaced, but the stylists gave them a heavy, massive look, which could be part of the reason they didn't sell too well.

    They were available as the Plymouth Gran Fury, Dodge St. Regis, Chrysler Newport, and Chrysler New Yorker. The 5th Avenue was a trim package that added about $1500 to the base price of the NY'er, which was already around $10,000 in 1979. I'm not sure exactly what the 5th Ave package comprised though. Probably just different leather and trim variations. The Newport, St. Regis, and Gran Fury were very popular with police departments and taxi fleets, but just never caught on with the general public. The New Yorker sold fairly well its first year, 1979, with about 55,000 units moved. But with 1980 it was downhill fast...something like 13,000 units, and even less for '81.

    Anyway, for the most part, they're just big old cars that nobody wants, but I have a perverse fascination with 'em ;-)

  • speedshiftspeedshift Posts: 1,598
    The DeSoto gets two thumbs up.

    The New Yorker, well...I used to buy cars like that but they were usually 10-15 years older. They're why I'll be able to retire when I'm 85.
  • Like the DeSoto as well. One nice thing about the R-bodies is you can pick up a really nice luxury car for pocket change.

    I also see where the K-car's got their dashboard design.
  • ab348ab348 Dartmouth, Nova Scotia, CanadaPosts: 10,383
    You might be the only remaining fan of the R-body. :)

    At the time I actually liked these cars. I thought the styling was fairly contemporary and certainly better than the new downsized Ford of that same year. But they seemed to have all sorts of quality woes. I remembered Consumer Reports testing one and finding an incredible number of things wrong with it, including a snapped front torsion bar. You certainly don't see many of them today, so I think they were fairly quickly taken out of service. The ones you do see certainly never seem as nice as yours.

    My brother had a '79 New Yorker for a short time as a company car. I really liked the dash in particular. It did seem to me to feel like an intermediate rather than a fullsizer though. I think maybe that, along with the rumors of Chrysler's impending demise at the time, probably hurt sales more than anything. I recall my boss in 1980 announcing that she was going to buy a new Cordoba because she thought it important that Chrysler survive. We all looked at her like she was nuts (well, maybe she was, but...). She ended up buying a nice one, sort of a silver green with a matching half-vinyl roof. I thought the styling of those was great.

    2017 Cadillac ATS Performance Premium 3.6, 1968 Oldsmobile Cutlass S Holiday Coupe

  • andre1969andre1969 Posts: 23,496
    I went rooting around through all my old photos last nite, and ended up finding pictures of just about every car I've ever owned, except for my '80 Malibu, which was my first. I'll get the Catalina up there eventually! I want to get some better pics of the NY'er up there, too. The ones I have posted now are the ones I got from E-bay, when I saw this car for sale online.

    But yeah, the NYer was pretty cheap. I ended up paying $900 for it. And about $250 to get it through Maryland inspection. I bought it from a dealership in West VA, who said he'd put it through inspection if I was tagging it in PA or West VA, so I guess Maryland is pickier about inspections. I just got the emissions test notice in the mail too, so that's my next hurdle. I guess that's one problem with playing around with old cars that aren't old enough!

    The day after I bought it though, I saw a '79 St. Regis on the street around the corner, for sale for $500 or best offer. I'd been seeing this car around the area for years, and knew where the owner lived (you learn a lot delivering pizzas), and had always been tempted to make them an offer on it. So I guess it's only natural that it goes up for sale the day after I bring an R-body home! It was a dark emerald green with a green cloth interior, and had recently been repainted. I've always been attracted to greens (well, the non-pondscum/puke varieties ;-) and thought it was a neat looking car, with its raked-back checkerboard grille and plastic-covered headlights. It was a more basic model power stuff, no 8-track, 318-2bbl, etc.

    Oh well, I guess I can't take in every stray I find ;-)
  • andre1969andre1969 Posts: 23,496
    ...if anybody wants to see. Not the best pic in the world, but it'll give ya an idea. I also found a pic of the DeSoto the day I brought it home, with the elderly couple I bought it from, and me, standing by it. I'll scan it eventually. It's really amazing to think that sweet little old lady could actually handle that beast of a car!
  • im_brentwoodim_brentwood Posts: 4,883
    Finally! =D

    I have been waiting to see your fleet for years!

  • dweezildweezil Posts: 271
    and congratulations. Beautiful vehicles. I've got your site bookmarked. I've seen a photo of your DeS, but not the Newport. EXCELLENT. Makes me wish my parents had let me buy that 78 Plymouth Fury [aka Satellite] 4 door from them. I loved that thing.Had to have those leaf spring assists from JC Whitney put on the back because it bottomed so badly even with new shocks.
    Wish I had pix of the 3 Plymouths :parent's Fury, my 63 Valiant Signet and my little bro's Saporro [78/79?]. Seen one of those lately???
  • jrosasmcjrosasmc Posts: 1,711
    Any Volvos from the 70s (except the 1800ES).
  • I remember, at the time, they were head turners. Laugh now, but as a teenager working in a gas station, I remember people really looking at them.

    There was one I specifically remember. I was two tone. Dark blue on the sides with gray hood/roof/trunk. At the time it was an awsome looking car.
  • ghuletghulet Posts: 2,628
    I do remember the Charger, after it changed in '76 (correct me if I'm wrong) to look a lot like the Cordoba. IIRC, this car frequently had the sport/disco two tone treatments (usually silver body with black or blue block on the sides), with the 'finned' alloys. That was kind of a hot looking car at the time. I think I like the '76s better than the '73-75s (remember the slootted rear window treatment on the 'landau' roof?)
  • speedshiftspeedshift Posts: 1,598
    The '71-up Chargers looked really awkward. Way too much front overhang, just looked too big for the wheelbase. The Satellite based on the same shell looked pretty good if you like the "fuselage" styling Chrysler was into then. A '71 1/2 or '72 340 Road Runner would be a nice well-balanced driver.
  • jrosasmcjrosasmc Posts: 1,711
    Anybody remember the '75-'78 Charger SE and its subsequent replacements, the '78-'79 Magnum XE and the '80-'83 Mirada? The lowest point in Chrysler quality.
This discussion has been closed.