First off I would like to introduce myself. My name is Seamus, I am 19 years old, I live in Northwest Ohio, and this fall I will be starting my freshman year at McPherson College in Kansas to study Automotive Restoration. I own a 1949 Packard 22nd Series Super 8 Touring Sedan. I bought the car on 6 July 2013, for $4,000. Mom and dad helped a bit because if I bought the car then I would not have any money to start working on it. We all know it takes a lot of money to restore cars!!! I'm not going to go through the big list of everything I have done to this car, even though I have a bigger list of things to accomplish, but I have gone though the whole brake system, fuel system, some of the engine, made new spark plug wires, rubbed out a lot of paint, and so much more.
This Packard is, but isn't a 1949 Packard. Packard extended the production year of the 1948 Packards into the production year of 1949, so they had to change serial numbers; hence the car being a 22nd series (1949 body style Packards are the 23rd series). So in short... I have the body style of a 1948, but serial number of 1949. The body style is a 4 door touring sedan, and has the original interior. It has been repainted, but the original color known as Serpentine Green (dark metallic green). I've heard from Packard enthusiasts that it is a very rare color. It is equipped with the 327 straight 8, and a 3 speed manual with OVERDRIVE! I couldn't have asked for a straighter rust free body, and the chrome is original and good.
The next part is long and you do not have to read it, but it is a paper I wrote for McPherson College for more application in October of 2013. I tells a brief yet long story about the history of the 1949 22nd Series Packards. Sorry its in third person.
17 October 2013
“Ask the Boy Who Owns One”
The Packard Motor Car Company has always stood out far from other car companies, from 1899 until their collapse in 1958. As an American luxury automobile, Packard had a very limited market of wealthy people, but in 1935, all that had changed. Packard introduced the 120 model that the ordinary citizen could afford, and this saved the company from bankruptcy. They were treading water until 1940, when they introduced a whole new body style known as the Twentieth Series. In February, 1942, the government issued a limited production order. Packard had started producing airplane and patrol boat engines for World War II. Packard produced relatively the same body style for seven years, so by 1947 it was time for a new style, most commonly known as the Upside Down Bathtubs.
Packard sent out an ad in Time magazine in the last week of September of 1947, that showed a picture of the new dash and steering wheel that said, “Behind this wheel - -very soon - - will sit the happy owner of an entirely new kind of car. Watch for - - and wait for - - the exciting new PACKARD for ’48.” Two weeks later in the same magazine Packard ran two pages that showed four different models. In early August about 3,500 Super Eight convertibles were shipped out to Packard dealerships around the nation. The 3,500 Packards had a cover over them that read, “This is a New ’48 - - Packard - - to be unveiled to the public Wednesday Oct 15th.” When the new Packards were revealed, they had many nicknames given to them from many different people. The most prominent nickname was the Upside Down Bathtub. This name was given to the automobile because if the car were turned upside down, it looked like a bathtub, and many people thought this was one of Packards ugliest designs. Some of the other nicknames for the ’48 Packard included the Slab-Sided Goat, Macauley’s Folly, and the Pregnant Elephant. With so many outrageous remarks about the new design, Packard was concerned they might not sell all of their automobiles.
Sales were down towards the end of the year, so Packard decided to extend production of the ’48 models to meet their goal of 150,000 cars. Since Packard had extended the production time, they had to change the VIN numbers on the cars produced after the 1st of November in 1948, because sales of the twenty-third series Packards were introduced on the same day. Many of the Packards that feature a 1948 body style have a 1949 VIN number because production was extended. Packard had produced 150,000 automobiles by April of 1949.
Seamus purchased his first car, a 1949 Packard Super 8 Touring Sedan with ##### miles on it for $4,000 on the 6th of July. He is very proud to be the fourth owner! The car features the body style of a 1948 Super 8, but it was produced sometime between November of 1948 and April 1949. According to Packard records, Seamus’ car is the color Serpentine Green, a dark metallic green. The Super 8 model is equipped with a 327 cubic inch straight eight motor with about 150 horsepower. The car has its original upholstery, and the headliner is even intact. Seamus’ car comes with many Packard accessories. These include the Goddess of Speed hood ornament, non-glare mirror, radio, heater, custom sun visor, coat hooks, and a luggage compartment/trunk light. His car also includes a few rare Packard accessories as well. These include automatic windshield washers, a vanity mirror, rotary antenna, deluxe steering wheel, and an electric gas tank lock.
Seamus has been working hard for the past couple of months on his Packard. He was eager to get the car started, but the brakes did not work. He rebuilt the master cylinder and each wheel cylinder and bled each of the brakes. With the brakes fixed, the next step was the engine. It turned over really slowly, just as if it had been rebuilt, but he was unable to find out if it had been or not. Seamus poured Marvel Mystery Oil into the cylinders to see if it could loosen the pistons a bit. In the meantime, he made his own set of sparkplug wires and soldered them all together. Seamus tried starting the car again, but failed. The next step was to tow it behind his friend’s fire truck to see if it could loosen up the engine and occasionally slip it into third gear to see if it would start. Seamus continues to work on getting the engine started
Once Seamus gets the engine started, he plans to replace all fuel lines and brake lines. Then he plans to replace the exhaust system and add a trailer hitch. He will also continue to wet sand the car and rub the paint out. After owning the car for a few years, Seamus plans to repaint the car and turn it into a Fire Chief’s car.
With Seamus’ love for his Packard, he will soon have it on the road, and be telling people about the history of the 1948 Packards. He plans on keeping it for as long as he lives because when he talks with other car guys they always complain that they sold their first car. Seamus can always share his true passion for the Packard Motor Car Company; all you have to do is “Ask the boy who owns one.”
Baird, David. "Styling Cues." Automobile Quarterly. Ed. Gerry Durnell. 4th ed. Vol. 45. New Albany: Automobile Heritage and Communications, LLC, 2005. 112-15. Print.
Kimes, Beverly R., ed. Packard A History of the Motor Car and the Company. N.p.: Automobile Quarterly Publications, 1978. Print.
Neal, Robert J. Packard 1948 to 1950. Kent: Aero-Marine History, 2011. Print.
Turnquist, Robert E. The Packard Story The Car and the Company. Cranbury: A. S. Barnes and, 1965. Print.