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Tips on buying a new to me mopar

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I'm new to the pre 70s mopar scene, but I am going to get my first one this firday! it runs and drives, looks decently clean with some rust spots, anyways what are some tips/common knowledge (for veteran members) that I need to know and look for.

 

It is a 53 cranbrook, it looks fairly original and is still a 6v system.

from what I can tell from the pictures it has 3 on the tree with optional overdrive, it has the dealer option wipers switch, im guessing  it was an early 53 cause the current owner says there is an issue with the fuel tank/neck not having baffles. but these are only a few things I have noticed about it from the pictures.

 

any tips will be helpful. I'm 26 and have lived well before my time with daily driving mopars such as 76 b300, 78 magnum, 83 d150, 87 5th ave, 87 ramcharger.  but I have no clue about a flathead and a 6v system haha. 

 

The goal with it is just to drive it, make it as reliable as possible and enjoy the nostalgia, eventually get some speed parts for it since it still has a factory exhaust manifold and intake, looks like stock carb but cant really tell from the pictures.  

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If its fairly rust free and runs, drives and the price is right go for it. Keep an eye out for used parts. There are lots out there. If you have the room, your own personal spare parts stash is nice to have.  There are still lots of new general wear item parts available.  Andy Bernbaum, Old Mopar, Rock Auto are a few parts sources. There’s several more. 
 

You need good brakes. You may need to go thru them. You didn’t mention it.  Have a look on ebay to give you an idea on parts costs.
 

6V system is adequate if it is maintained with proper sized starter cables and good clean solid grounds. Personally I have no desire to upgrade to 12V. 6V is fine. 
 

These low revving flat head engines can take abuse. They seem to be pretty easy to get running.  Without seeing the car, depending how picky you are, what you’ll spend to make it drivable can vary widely. 
 

Fun simple cars to work on and maintain yourself. Be aware of the opposite lug threads on the two sides of the car.  Always spinning toward the front 

bumper is tightening. 
 

Got any pics to share. 

Edited by keithb7

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My wife owns 2 73 super beetles and 1 72, I've had luck with plain and simple cars, So I'm excited to see how fun this one is to tinker with. Thanks for the tips. I was curious id this would have the reverse threads, ive heard of people doing some silly things trying to grt them off when really they were just tightening it the whole time. Also the car looks really good, the owner has sent me the rust shots of the door sills and some rough spots in the floor boards but it looks more solid than the vws we drive so I'm excited. As far as in the engine bay picture. I'm not 100% on what the glass jar is on the driver side so any input on that would be great, the pictures are too hard to tell what's hoses are going to it. 

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Pretty sure the glass jug is a windshield washer reservoir.

Nice looking car. Best of luck with it.

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Good looking car! Congrats. Enjoy it. Certainly looks like a good candidate to throw some money at. You found a good home here on this site. All the help you might need is right here.

 

I recommend seeking out an original shop manual. A parts manual is real nice too as it helps with sourcing parts. The parts diagrams are great too. A Motor's manual from about the period is a nice addition to own too. I can't help with performance parts. I run stockers. However there certainly are some fine folks here who are in the know. Welcome to the forum, it's nice to have some young blood here among us.

Edited by keithb7

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Welcome aboard from Oz..........as it should have the Dodge/Plymouth 23" long engine hop up parts are available.......a few yrs ago i was going to install a hopped up 230 cube 23" ex airport tug engine in the 41 Plymouth I had.......for various reasons I sold the car & engine but the attached pic is how it was going to look , it had an Edgy finned head from the USA, Offy intake, a split pair of stock mopar exhaust manifolds and a few other things.........I installed a HEI dissy from Stovebolt Engineering and a Beehive oil filter on the stock 1941 engine but would have swapped these onto the 230 when installed..........these engines will never be a high rpm engine but a low restriction exhaust , a extra carby and a few thou milled off the cylinder head will wake them up & keep the smile on your face..........andyd 

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Thank you for all the feedback!

 

Keithb7 the owner has a reprint of the manual that he is giving me as well so I really lucked out there.

I will be looking for all the hard to find literature for it to help me out as much as I can.

I no longer have a grandfather and my dad is more into the 90s ford trucks thing so I cant get any knowledge from him.

I do have an older mentor I use to work with at a chevy dealership that was big into early mopars when he was young and dirt track most of his life so ill be asking him for some tricks and tips.

 

plymjim I didn't even think about that possibility, good call!

 

andydodge, looks like my plans in about 1-4 years haha depending on how long it takes me to track down parts, currently I have 2 project cars im building to fill my need for speed so im just going to take it low and slow with this for a while, that also gives me plenty of time to do the research I need. 

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Looks like a great car! I got into these old mopars last summer and between my '49 Plymouth and my neighbor's two cars I have learned a lot!

 

This forum will be incredibly invaluable.

 

I'm 31 so it's nice to hear someone else in the younger age bracket is interested in this era of mopars!

 

Share as many questions and pictures as you want! We are all learning together. 

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1 hour ago, tjlarson88 said:

I'm 31 so it's nice to hear someone else in the younger age bracket is interested in this era of mopars!


I don’t remember age 31!  That was half a century back. Dang, that was 1970! Nam war, if I recall, pre viagra, Johnson/Nixon era, Liz Taylor was still a beauty, John Wayne and Ann Margaret were making great movies, Elvis and the Beetles! Radical times! 

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In the late ‘60’s and early ‘70’s I was an English Literature teacher / debate coach in a high school of 3,000 students. I was the first teacher to wear a beard of any kind, 

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Well the car made a 240 mile trip home Friday, then its driven about 40-70 more miles since that trip. The car is doing great. I put it on a lift today to check out the underneath. Turns out its pretty solid.

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