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1942 DeSoto
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Author:  JonYinger [ Sun Oct 23, 2016 4:54 am ]
Post subject:  1942 DeSoto

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Hi fellow DeSoto lovers.

My name is Jon Yinger and I'm a car nut. I bought my first car when I was 14--it was a barely running 1941 Ford. My second car was a 1950 DeSoto Custom. A much nicer car than the '41 Ford. But the engine developed a knock. So I replaced it (myself!) with a flat head six out of a Chrysler Windsor. Then the clunk-o-matic began to fail, and I replaced that with one out of a '51 Dodge.

A couple of years later I got a hand-me-down from my mom--a 1953 DeSoto Firedome. Another great car. I owned that car for several years. Then I got a hand-me-down from my grandmother--a 1955 DeSoto Fireflight. A really nice car.

Then there was a long period of Buicks and Cadillacs, even a few Corvairs. But what I always wanted was a 1957 DeSoto Fireflight. When I began to look in ernest, about 12 years ago, they were all too expensive. But I found a 1956 Chrysler Imperial with the hemi V8, the first torqueflight transmission, the forward look styling. And it was only $10K. Imagine! Then I went through a period of Imperials--I still have nine of them--three 1951s, six 1956s.

Nevertheless, I always missed my DeSotos. Then I saw that great scene in Steven Spielberg's series The Pacific where John Basilone drives up to pick up his new bride Vera in a 1941 DeSoto convertible. And I fell in love all over again. But what really did it for me was the movie The Postman Always Rings Twice (which we saw a few weeks ago)--the D.A. is driving around in a beautiful 1942 DeSoto Custom 4 door. Wow.

So I became to look for a '42 DeSoto for sale. And, as you all know, they are are hard to find. I finally found one--it will need a little work--and once again I am a DeSoto owner. She is due to arrive from New Mexico next week. I'll keep you posted.

Meanwhile, I'll see if I can attach a photo....Here goes...

If the photo didn't get posted, maybe you can show me how??

Jon Yinger

Author:  FredRoman [ Sun Oct 23, 2016 2:14 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: 1942 DeSoto

Glad to have you on board. Sounds like you will have a lot to share with us in the future. Pictures are always welcome and good luck!

"It's delightful, it's delovely, it's DeSoto"

Author:  WilliamNoble [ Sun Oct 23, 2016 7:23 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: 1942 DeSoto

Jon,

Welcome to the club and the message board. And congrats on you finding a '42. It's hard for me to tell from the photo, but is it a Custom club coupe? Regardless, you've gotten yourself a really rare car. Looking forward to seeing it at one of our annual conventions.

Bill

Author:  JonYinger [ Wed Oct 26, 2016 6:10 am ]
Post subject:  Re: 1942 DeSoto

OK, I have a major decision to make here. Desi is due to arrive here Friday, and I want to get to work. I have a very nice running 354 hemi with a 3-spd torqueflite looking for a home. Desi will arrive sans engine. I am also getting a '46 Desoto parts car with a 236 ci flathead six, maybe needing a rebuild.

1) rebuild the 236 and keep the car original, or
2) install the hemi with a few other mechanical improvements---but keep the interior strictly original. Also original steering wheel,dash etc., and original wheels

So......Original drivetrain? or, hemi + torqueflite?

Author:  WilliamNoble [ Thu Oct 27, 2016 2:26 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: 1942 DeSoto

Just my opinion here. 1942 De Sotos are very, VERY, rare! According to Don Butler's book, The Plymouth and DeSoto Story, there were only 24,771 made of all 1942 De Soto models (as compared to 152,427 made for 1942 Plymouths). And if your car is a Custom club coupe, then only 2,236 were made; if it's a DeLuxe club coupe, then only 1,968 were made.

So I'd say it comes down to just how much work that 236 engine from 1946 needs. If the engine doesn't need much work, I'd hope you'd go for keeping the car original. I doubt very much that anyone would notice that you have a 1946 engine in the car instead of a 1942 engine. But if the 236 needs too much help, then I wouldn't blame you for going with the 354 hemi. If you do go with the hemi, perhaps you can minimize the modifications such that if you ever do come across a good 236, you could put it back to original.

As I said above, just my opinion; it's your car to do with as you want.

Bill

Author:  GeoffOverley [ Fri Oct 28, 2016 1:23 am ]
Post subject:  Re: 1942 DeSoto

Jon,
From experience, I would go with the 236 as almost an instant fit. The steering column makes installing a V8 a tough project.
I noticed that the 42 needs some dental work! I have a number of grille parts from a '42 cut off from which I pirated the headlight mechanisms. I also have the NOS piece just above the grille. My project ended as a radical custom so I do have some stock stuff that I didn't use.
I also spent a week or so self-educating myself on the "Airfoil Headlamps"! Trickey!
I'll send some pictures along with the magazine when I get your address.
Geoff (again)

Author:  JonYinger [ Mon Oct 31, 2016 8:10 am ]
Post subject:  Re: 1942 DeSoto

WilliamNoble wrote:
Just my opinion here. 1942 De Sotos are very, VERY, rare! According to Don Butler's book, The Plymouth and DeSoto Story, there were only 24,771 made of all 1942 De Soto models (as compared to 152,427 made for 1942 Plymouths). And if your car is a Custom club coupe, then only 2,236 were made; if it's a DeLuxe club coupe, then only 1,968 were made.

So I'd say it comes down to just how much work that 236 engine from 1946 needs. If the engine doesn't need much work, I'd hope you'd go for keeping the car original. I doubt very much that anyone would notice that you have a 1946 engine in the car instead of a 1942 engine. But if the 236 needs too much help, then I wouldn't blame you for going with the 354 hemi. If you do go with the hemi, perhaps you can minimize the modifications such that if you ever do come across a good 236, you could put it back to original.

As I said above, just my opinion; it's your car to do with as you want.

Bill


Thanks for the responses. I am very likely going to use the 236 and keep it close to original. I plan a few heretical changes: front disc brakes, 12 volt conversion (using that alternator which looks like a 6 volt generator), pertronix ignition. I want to restore the interior to look as close to original as possible, and the same with the exterior.

I would love to use and adapter and install a aluminum case torquelfite, but I'll probably keep the clunk-o-matic. I once had a '50 Desoto that had a button on the gear shift so you could start in 1st, then hold in that button while you shift down to high range before it clunks into 4th. Does anyone have the parts to do this?

Anyway, I'll submit photos as we make progress.

Author:  JonYinger [ Mon Jan 09, 2017 10:09 am ]
Post subject:  Re: 1942 DeSoto

It is a Custom Club Coupe.

The one part that I am having the most trouble locating is a decent '42 steering wheel.

I can use the steering wheel out of the '46, but I would so like to keep it looking like an authentic '42.

Anyone have a spare steering wheel lying around?

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