Let me start by saying that I am now going to do something that I don't want to do.
With the housing market and budget cuts affecting our pay my wife and I have found ourselves more financially strapped than ever before in our lives. It is with that in mind that I have decided to sell my 57 wagon. Many of you know that the car is under restoration and is currently located at Tim Bowers shop, Stellar Restorations, in Kansas. Tim has done exceptional work thus far and the car has been kept in storage since my money tree died a few years ago. I would be hard pressed to recommend anyone better to finish this car.
I would venture to say the car is about half way finished. The expensive, time consuming part is done (taking apart, cleaning, catloging of parts, etc). Now the best part can start! The body work is 95% done and the car is in primer and ready to paint. Engine compartment is detailed and ready to go back together (I was waiting to do front end rebuild and steering box rebuild first.) NEW NOS front yoke radiator support and new NOS harmonic balancer pully (special for AC cars). Engine rebuilt, and charging, cooling, brake and fuel system, including carb, all rebuilt. Brand new four core radiator (special radiator for AC cars). All components for front end rebuild are included with the car but this has not been done yet. All stainless has been removed and polished. New dual exhaust was installed following the factory placement. Rear tailgate glass will need to be replaced, but all other glass is there but the windshield does have some bubbling at the bottom. Side glass was good if I remember correctly. Original interior was still there and fair for age but needs to be redone. All material was available from SMS auto fabrics.
Tim can tell you the car was really pretty solid when we started. Very little rust overall. Floors and third passenger area were like new. Car had factory undercoating and I think this protected it all these years.
Much,much more.. too much to tell here. Due to a computer crash I don't have any pictures at this time but Tim may be able to post some if he wouldn't mind. He has done much more work than listed here. I currently have about $23,000 dollars tied up in this car, but am willing to take a huge loss to sell it. I have receipts for most of the work. I am asking $12,900 for the car but reasonable offers will be considered. Its like getting $10,000 dollars worth of free restoration and all you have to do now is finish it!
This car is extremely rare. You will never see another and I have never seen one at a club meet (except the ambulance). Wagons have seen a surge in value over the last few years due to rarity. Many were used for parts or demolition derby cars.
About the car:
1957 DeSoto Fireflite Explorer Wagon
-Only one registered in the NDC's roster and may be the only one left in the world as I have never seen another other than one that was converted into an ambulance when new.
-This is the third seat car and is the top of the line for that year. Only around 940 made in total.
-This car comes with FACTORY A/C and a Hiway Hi-Fi Record player installed.
-Factory dual exhaust - rare for wagons.
-Solex glass, 341 Hemi engine w/4bbl carb (last year for DeSoto hemis) AT (3spd Torqueflite), PS, PB, Electic Tailgate window, search signal radio, dual side view mirrors.
-Factory colors: Sahara Tan body with white roof and sweep... I was changing this to a blue (factory color) with white roof and sweep. All wagons had a tan interior.
-Car was sold new here in SC and has been in SC all its life. I believe I am the second registered owner. I have a clear SC title for the car.
There are a couple of choices here. Tim would probably be more than happy to finish the restoration for a potential buyer. Or he may be willing to work to a certain point for you so you can take it home and finish it yourself. Any work you want done to the car would need to be discussed with Tim Bowers.
Tim, if you read this and have any good pics of the car you can post would you please be willing to do so?
If interested in the car, please contact me on my cell phone. 843-224-3165 Serious inquiries only please. I hope the car finds a good home within the NDC.
Thanks in advance!