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Old 03-09-2011, 01:14 PM   #1
AstroZombie
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Default Went to grandmas house, came home with a 28 Special coupe!

Here's a little back story first:

When my wife and I were dating she said "Grandma has an old car in her garage.." Of course my interest was peaked! All the family gatherings grandma and I would be found chatting about old cars, (I just love her stories!) If I couldn't be found in the house, I was in the garage with the Model A. I always told grandma I wanted to take her out for a rootbeer float in her car. Well, it looks like I'll finally get that chance.

She told me last weekend "You can have the Model A whenever you can park it in your garage." That's all the invitation I needed!!

Today my wife and I went to pick up the car. This is the first time it's seen daylight since 1977.
The A was a mail delivery car in Tennessee, and made it's way to CA in the 40's. My wifes grandmother and grandfather purchased the car in 1951. As their family grew the coupe was their only means of transportation. There are fond memories of two adults and 4 children piled in this coupe headed to Yosemite for a camping trip! My father in law said his favorite place to ride was the package tray
The paint was done by the local high school shop class sometime in the 60's. I don't know whose idea it was to paint it purple, but it's kinda growing on me!
Here are some pics of the day, getting her dug out of the garage, off the blocks and out into the sun. The AAA driver said "MAN, it's about time I get a REAL car on the back of my truck!" Grandma was emotional, (As Grandpa passed 5 years ago and the car was a big part of their lives) Enjoy the pics, plans are fix the roof, new interior, mildly hop up the banger and ENJOY! Oh, and of course take Grandma for that root beer float!

Anyone in the CA Central Valley that KNOWS about Stock Model A's want to help me fire this thing?? I want to get it running (Enough to take grandma for a ride) Then tear it down for a full rebuild. I don't want to do this car a disservice by messing something up!























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Old 03-09-2011, 01:21 PM   #2
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Default Re: Went to grandmas house, came home with a 28 Special coupe!

Very nice! Good find! Looks like a 32-34 "B style" water pump sitting on the running board, but the engine looks like it's using a model A head and water pump. Does your car have a fuel pump on the lower front passenger side? It may have a later engine in it that may have a counter balanced crank.

Hope that the changes you make to it are mild, and that you have some fun with it!
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Old 03-09-2011, 01:26 PM   #3
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Default Re: Went to grandmas house, came home with a 28 Special coupe!

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Originally Posted by Jason in TX View Post
Very nice! Good find! Looks like a 32-34 "B style" water pump sitting on the running board, but the engine looks like it's using a model A head and water pump. Does your car have a fuel pump on the lower front passenger side? It may have a later engine in it that may have a counter balanced crank.

Hope that the changes you make to it are mild, and that you have some fun with it!
THANKS!

The engine does not have a fuel pump, but it does have a 4 speed transmission (Probably added by the mailman who was the original owner)

I think you're right about a B water pump, also it has later wheels on it too. The model A wheels are still in the barn.

Changes to this one will be VERY mild. I have my hotrod addiction, but I can appreciate this car as it is.
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Old 03-09-2011, 02:02 PM   #4
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Default Re: Went to grandmas house, came home with a 28 Special coupe!

Im glad you got the car and the history to go with it!!!
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Old 03-09-2011, 02:12 PM   #5
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Default Re: Went to grandmas house, came home with a 28 Special coupe!

Very cool.
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Old 03-09-2011, 02:25 PM   #6
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Default Re: Went to grandmas house, came home with a 28 Special coupe!

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Astro- Congrats on the car. Glad to hear you're honoring it's history and keeping it stock. Great story too. I was going to suggest a friend of mine in Ripon as a source of parts/knowledge, but I see you're down near Hanford.
Good luck with the project! Bruce
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Old 03-09-2011, 02:28 PM   #7
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Default Re: Went to grandmas house, came home with a 28 Special coupe!

awesome story!
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Old 03-09-2011, 02:41 PM   #8
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Default Re: Went to grandmas house, came home with a 28 Special coupe!

You lucky F***!!!!!!! Great to see your acquisition... Nice to hear it will stay mostly original. My first recommendation is to drop the oil pan and clean out the sludge before you try to start it. You will be amazed at the crap in the bottom clinging to the oilpump. I think you will find the simplicity of an original A to be addictive. This is a fantastic forum with boundless information from its members.....
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Old 03-09-2011, 02:43 PM   #9
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Default Re: Went to grandmas house, came home with a 28 Special coupe!

Thanks everyone, I am still blown away by the whole thing!

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Astro- Congrats on the car. Glad to hear you're honoring it's history and keeping it stock. Great story too. I was going to suggest a friend of mine in Ripon as a source of parts/knowledge, but I see you're down near Hanford.
Good luck with the project! Bruce
Bruce, thanks I am a little far away from Ripon. I've been doing a bunch of homework on this car, (and saving money!) Don't want to do this wrong.
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Old 03-09-2011, 02:47 PM   #10
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Default Re: Went to grandmas house, came home with a 28 Special coupe!

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Originally Posted by Steve Wastler View Post
You lucky F***!!!!!!! Great to see your acquisition... Nice to hear it will stay mostly original. My first recommendation is to drop the oil pan and clean out the sludge before you try to start it. You will be amazed at the crap in the bottom clinging to the oilpump. I think you will find the simplicity of an original A to be addictive. This is a fantastic forum with boundless information from its members.....
Thanks Steve, that's what I'm looking for! Recommendations like that! The engine seems to be complete, other than a broken bail on the distributer.
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Old 03-09-2011, 02:53 PM   #11
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Default Re: Went to grandmas house, came home with a 28 Special coupe!

Pull the spark plugs,shoot some ATFin and let soak awhile then spin the starter with plugs out ,might have some juice in the holes and you'd want to make sure the cylinders are clear before trying to start it
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Old 03-09-2011, 03:08 PM   #12
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Default Re: Went to grandmas house, came home with a 28 Special coupe!

put marvel mystery oil in instead of ATF will burn and lubract clyinder walls.
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Old 03-09-2011, 03:23 PM   #13
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Default Re: Went to grandmas house, came home with a 28 Special coupe!

Congrats - take plenty of pictures of that roof inside and out before taking it apart... the "Special Coupe" is a bit different from the other coupes.

Also, the roof, belt, and rain-gutter mouldings are all unique to the Special Coupe, and are not reproduced (as far as I know), so try to be careful with any original parts - you may have to re-use them !

Welcome to the Special Coupe "club" !
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Old 03-09-2011, 03:48 PM   #14
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Default Re: Went to grandmas house, came home with a 28 Special coupe!

I'll be driving down 99 on Sunday if ya still need help.
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Old 03-09-2011, 04:01 PM   #15
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Default Re: Went to grandmas house, came home with a 28 Special coupe!

nice! great story and cool car! grandma rules!
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Old 03-09-2011, 04:06 PM   #16
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Default Re: Went to grandmas house, came home with a 28 Special coupe!

You say the car came from Tennessee...Would be interested to know what the assembly plant information is.

Go to my website and under "Additional Studies" you will see a file called Letters, Numbers and Codes...there it is explained just how to find the assembly plant information plus the gas tank date and the original engine number when you get the body off the frame.

Thanks and great looking car.

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Old 03-09-2011, 04:27 PM   #17
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Default Re: Went to grandmas house, came home with a 28 Special coupe!

That's just plain GREAT!!! The first thing you should purchase is a dozen red roses for "Grandma". Don't waste any time getting it running (but follow everyone's good advise first) so you can take Grandma out for that rootbeer float. Time moves quickly for us older farts if you know what I mean. Congrats!!

Last edited by Rusty Homestead Fl; 03-09-2011 at 08:11 PM.
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Old 03-09-2011, 04:52 PM   #18
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Default Re: Went to grandmas house, came home with a 28 Special coupe!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Chris Haynes View Post
I'll be driving down 99 on Sunday if ya still need help.
Thanks Chris, my wife is pregnant and her due date is tomorrow! So I may or may not be available Sunday. If I am, you're welcome to stop by, have a look, exchange some info and take a bathroom break!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Steve Plucker View Post
You say the car came from Tennessee...Would be interested to know what the assembly plant information is.

Go to my website and under "Additional Studies" you will see a file called Letters, Numbers and Codes...there it is explained just how to find the assembly plant information plus the gas tank date and the original engine number when you get the body off the frame.

Thanks and great looking car.

Pluck
Will do, I'd like to know as much about the car as I can too! Thanks!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Rusty Homestead Fl View Post
That's just plain GREAT!!! The first thing you should purchase is a dozen red roses for "Grandma". Don't waste any time getting getting it running (but follow everyone's advise good first) so you can take Grandma out for that rootbeer float. Time moves quickly for us older farts if you know what I mean. Congrats!!
I agree totally. She said she isn't getting any younger and she wants a rootbeer float!
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Old 03-09-2011, 04:57 PM   #19
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Default Re: Went to grandmas house, came home with a 28 Special coupe!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Special Coupe Frank View Post
Congrats - take plenty of pictures of that roof inside and out before taking it apart... the "Special Coupe" is a bit different from the other coupes.

Also, the roof, belt, and rain-gutter mouldings are all unique to the Special Coupe, and are not reproduced (as far as I know), so try to be careful with any original parts - you may have to re-use them !

Welcome to the Special Coupe "club" !

Frank, thanks for the info. Sadly, the rain gutter mouldings and beltline trim are gone.... When the local shop class painted the car they used putty in the gutter wells and along the beltline. The barn is full of odds and ends, I'll look around for any more parts when I pick up the wheels.

On a side note, Where in PA are you from? I was born in Bloomsburg and grew up in Berwick. Came to CA ten years ago with the Navy and pretty much became a CA boy!
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Old 03-09-2011, 05:05 PM   #20
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Default Re: Went to grandmas house, came home with a 28 Special coupe!

Astro - I'm up in the Northern coal fields - Scranton / Wilkes-Barre.


My SC was re-topped at some point - with black sport-coupe fabric, and no mouldings...

The old Flivver's still going though... churned-out over 5,000 miles since I brought it home in January of '10.
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