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Driving an old vehicle on the roadways??


Mikec4193
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Hi Mopar guys...as I toil away on another pile of rust...I recall how much I don't really enjoy driving these old vehicles...love love love to tinker on them...but the thing that hurts me the most is pulling out on the roadway where I live and actually taking it down the road....it is terrifying to say the least...

 

My last old project car I drove on the roadways was a 1968 VW Bug...it would run down the road ok (once I got it wound up) but it was so slow getting it going...people right up my back side was a common occurrence...close calls every single time I took it out too...

 

So I think some of us are drivers and some of us are builders...I am a cobber/builder...but I have saved several old heaps from getting thrown away and allowed others to take my projects and make them their own....

 

Thanks for listening...

 

Happy grinding everyone...

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we are all in the hobby for one reason or another, some are realistic, some not so realistic...lots of back and forth between owners on stock verse mod and drive verse doing the work on them.  I am more into your side of the hobby where the majority of the fun is the build...but not to the point that I am afraid to drive them when finished and if it does not perform, gallon of gas and match and that one is behind you and move along Betty and find another fun project......the match and gas is just a joke folks....but I do say if it will not perform or if I was forced to keep it stock, may as well burn it....😃  Many of my cars are stock many are modified...it all depends on what I see in the car when I get it..

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I used to be of the modify camp.  Then I saw all the other modified cars and realized there are less and less stock (around my area).  Each time you modify one, you lose appeal to a certain segment.  With that said, I do not chastise or think no one should modify their car - it is YOUR car.  Have fun with it.  I just find I get more comments with it stock.  I will make safety modifications - brakes and seatbelts, or period accessories (NOS Mopar pieces).  And for me, there is a charm in driving an old car.  I do not take the freeway much at all, so most of my driving is surface streets.  I find my cars can hold their own there.  The older I get, the less I want to rush.

 

Again, to each their own, just make sure to have fun!

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I LOVE driving my old car. My Subaru is like driving a sensory deprivation chamber with a TV screen.  No road feel,  No feed back from the steering wheel, the shifter, The brakes, the clutch,  the seat.

 

I get in my old Plymouth and she speaks to me. I know what the tires are doing, I know what the breaks are doing, I can feel the clutch engaging.  Even at 35mph I prefer my Plymouth.

 

TO ME,  its like walking through a forest in your bare feet.

 

I think growing up with cars that actually had road feel, For me its just returning to the norm after a long absence.

 

I would guess that people who have only driven newer cars dont understand the feed back and vibrations of older Mechanical systems, so feel out of sorts.

 

But that is just MY OPINION. 

Edited by OUTFXD
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3 hours ago, Mikec4193 said:

.I recall how much I don't really enjoy driving these old vehicles...love love love to tinker on them...but the thing that hurts me the most is pulling out on the roadway where I live and actually taking it down the road....it is terrifying to say the least...

 

I could certainly understand your feelings there.  I literally hate driving in any city traffic with any vehicle.

 

I think for many people just having the project is the reward. And working on old technology may be a form of relaxation.

I think I have been working on my project over 3 years now. I have seriously thought about just giving up on it & sell it to another.

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Now I'm working on the back side of the vehicle. You can see my goal by looking at the front.

I'm not restoring the vehicle, Just repairing it to a runner driver & some sort of paint protection is part of it.

 

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I have not touched my truck for 2 months now. ..... I was disabled with a back injury when I was 48 years old, I have some serious Sciatica (Arthritis in the tail bone.)

All that means is my back is shot & have nerve pain in my legs from waist down. I am 60 years old today.    .... Not a matter of pain, just how much pain today?

I took the wife to walmart yesterday. I simply need 2 days to recover. Same time I have a vegetable garden, I need to get some canning done for the winter ....  I own A house that needs maintained  ..... What little time I do have is often not on my project.    ...... I sure enjoy having it when I have the time.

 

 

Just saying, I love having the project .... If I get to finish it is another story.

 

 

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Just now, Sniper said:

 Happy birthday Los

OMG I played that hand wrong @Sniper

I was born June 14 1962 ..... I turned 60 years old 2 months ago ....I am 60 today. .... but it is not my birthday.

 

I kinda feel I'm always making up excuses.  ..... @sniper knows dang well the weather has been over 3 digits for over 65 days straight .... Next week is looking pretty good at temps below 100 .... This was a recent discussion on the forum. So the next week the temps will be 95-98 degrees ..... That is a huge improvement .... Remember August  is the hottest part of the year.  .... It will get hotter.

 

Me I'm going to let my foot heal, I'm going to plant seeds in the garden for a fall crop ..... I'm going to hope I get my truck roadworthy .....We all have different ambitions.

 

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I guess there's many ways to look at it. I look at it like therapy. Put-zing around fixing and improving my truck takes my mind off the darker realities of life. The driving part can be a bit intimidating when competing with modern vehicles on the roadways. On the other hand, it is exciting not knowing if you'll come back home alive. Well, more likely under your trucks own power. Lols! Good idea to have some towing coverage.  Even with some of the changes I've made; (front disc, Borg Warner T5, higher ratio differential, seat belts) I still opt for the rural routes whenever possible. I'm the first to admit! My truck is still a death trap in a bad accident. But I guess I'll keep driving her.  Might be luckier to die behind the wheel then at a Nursing home?

 

It's later than we think.

 

Cheers!  Ha!

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i drive mine. sorry to hear people are afraid to drive theirs. i am going to try to do a long 5 or 6 day trip this fall to penn. from N.C.. I WILL DO MORE BACK ROADS, BUT 95 is not out of the question if needeed. it is a car, drive it.    capt den

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I have had that same feeling.  I haven't driven my 48 DeSoto since 1980.  I got so curious as to how it would drive, that I went all the way to Santa Barbara about 15 years ago to test drive a 48 Desoto just like mine.  It drove well.  But I have a friend that gave me a short drive in his Model A roadster in L.A. traffic and I was terrified!  But he routinely drives it in busy L.A. traffic!  I'm scared driving my 2017 Kia in L.A. traffic.  When my DeSoto is running again, I will not drive it as a daily driver, but just on special occasions, like Sunday mornings when traffic is down.  

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I got my license at 16 in 1969 so that makes me 39. (you do the math). My Dad always had Mopars. I learned on a 1960 Valiant with 3 on the floor. My first car was a 1965 Plymouth Barracuda with no power anything. I put 80K on her and had it for 10 years. We were inseparable but rust became a big problem in Minnesota. Then came a 74 Dodge Charger. Wow power steering and power brakes and a V8! Then came newer cars. I guess through the years you get acclimated to the new car driving sensation. no road feel, tight suspensions (no sway on turns). My current car is a KIA Ceed. Then I bought a 1937 Plymouth. I remembered the fun I use to have driving and the do's and don'ts because of the suspension. I'm not fast but I have never owned a car that consistently puts a smile on my and my wife's face when driving or having people ask about our car. For me our 37 Plymouth is my first choice for driving and would rather drive that car than any other car including any modern car.

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13 hours ago, OUTFXD said:

I LOVE driving my old car. My Subaru is like driving a sensory deprivation chamber with a TV screen.  No road feel,  No feed back from the steering wheel, the shifter, The brakes, the clutch,  the seat.

 

I get in my old Plymouth and she speaks to me. I know what the tires are doing, I know what the breaks are doing, I can feel the clutch engaging.  Even at 35mph I prefer my Plymouth.

 

TO ME,  its like walking through a forest in your bare feet.

 

I think growing up with cars that actually had road feel, For me its just returning to the norm after a long absence.

 

I would guess that people who have only driven newer cars dont understand the feed back and vibrations of older Mechanical systems, so feel out of sorts.

 

But that is just MY OPINION. 

I love to drive old vehicles but just not out where others tend to run as well...where I currently live back roads don't exist anymore unless you go out at 4am.

My current plan is I am moving this January to a very rural part of NE Kansas and I hope to have a shop and a couple old clunkers to toddle around town...I love that smell of un burned gas and rattles and the bangs the smell of coolant as it runs out the overflow...

It is just the newer point and shoot vehicles are so fast and so quiet it scares me where I live now to actually drive the old heaps...

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I have a work truck that I put a ton of miles on, 3900 a month on average.  So when I am not driving it for work I don;t drive it at all, I drive the 51.  Even on 100+ degree days.

 

AC is on the list

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3 hours ago, Sniper said:

My other car is a 65 Cuda with power nothing.  Does have factory AC though.

My Cuda had the 225 slant 6 with auto tranny. I use to get 27 mpg. Dark blue in color with lt blue interior. She always started in the winter even in -27 degree temps. I didn't really care for the styling back then but she was the best car I have ever owned with the exception of my 1990 Dodge Dakota Pick-up with 2.5L 4 cylinder 5 speed.

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3 hours ago, Sniper said:

I have a work truck that I put a ton of miles on, 3900 a month on average.  So when I am not driving it for work I don;t drive it at all, I drive the 51.  Even on 100+ degree days.

 

AC is on the list

 Thats a lot of driving. Since getting settled here 4 years ago, I stopped changing the oil by the miles. I simply change oil twice a year in spring & fall .... I drive between 4k-6k miles a year  :D .... Thats the wife mini van, while my daily driver chebby truck gets 1/2 that ..... Just my driving habits.

 

Assuming my truck does have 4.10 gears, 50mph would be pushing it hard.

I typically just drive to the grocery store, hardware store, ...... A 2 mile drive I can show you all the highlights of my town. The max speed limit would be 35 mph.

If I wanted to take a 20 mile drive to Sweetwater, a larger small town that has a walmart.  I can drive on the bypass road that follows the freeway .... The speed limit is 55mph, The road is used for slow moving vehicles Like farm equipment moving from one field to the next. A 1949 Dodge truck would be right at home bouncing down the road at 45mph.

 

Not everybody lives out in the middle of nowhere like I do. So driving my truck is not a concern for me.

 

 

Of course comparing a truck to a car is comparing apples to oranges.

Most of the newer cars here have coil spring front suspension, over drive transmission, better gear ratio's  .... they can do highway driving.

If I were to drive my truck on the freeway, I would be a traffic hazard & would cause a accident. Possibly kill someone. It would be my fault.

Like anything it just takes common sense & drive responsibly with you cars ability.

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I do enjoy both, but the build is the ultimate challenge, driving is the reward.  If I just bring a car back (like my profile 49) it will usually stay somewhat stock.  If it's a body off, it gets modified and the sky's the limit (or wallet).

I drive my 49 a lot, 5-10k per year but when I was driving in SF Bay Area traffic, it had to be modified a little.  Those that live in the Bay Area understand the types of cars/drivers we are up against, so disc brakes and radial tires might give you just enough edge to keep out of trouble.

Driving these old cars has become exponentially more fun since I escaped the Bay Area for the sticks but I do drive them back to visit parents/friends.  A lot of the time driving the mostly stock 49 is the most fulfilling, there is a certain charm that gets partially lost with hotrodding.  

Edited by Adam H P15 D30
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Yes I agree that keeping the car original has its appeal.  So as many of you have read that I drove my stock 1939 Desoto from valley forge Pa to Altoona Pa to attend the National desoto clubs car show and convention back in June. I drove the car on the Pa Turnpike the posted speed limit goes from 55-70 MPH.  I drove the 39 at the average speed of 50-53 and stayed inthe right lane. I had blinker lights like what would be used on a bicycle attached to the my license plate and also reflective plastic strips over the rear bumpers. We drove a total of 550 miles.

 

I would like to say that i did not have any issues with truckers or other car. They all gave me plenty of room and no one was on my butt going each direction. On my way home i even had a tractor Trailor stay behind me all the way from Harrisburg Pa to valley forge for an approx distance of 75 mile and acted as a buffer to my car.  When he went around me I waved a big thank you to him and he replied with a pull on his air horn.

 

So yes you can still travel with these older cars but you also have the responsibility to be aware of your surroundings and to give the other guys the room they also require.

 

Rich Hartung

desoto1939@aol.com

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This last weekend I finally got to drive my 29 DeSoto for the first time. I asked others how fast will this thing go and the reply was as fast as the bravery.  So through some city driving I go no problem. Then the county road and I did 45 and felt good. The way home I decided to push a little harder and 55 and comfortable. I was pleasantly pleased. So I still wonder how fast will it go but don't think I should push my luck.

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So I love the tinkering and the build but I love the ride too. I seek that attention of the public. I couldn't do one or the other.

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