Fisher bodys

Shocks, Springs, Brakes, Frame, Body Work, etc

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exhaustgases
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Fisher bodys

Post by exhaustgases » Fri Jul 24, 2015 4:11 am

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ACWMbeXd31s

And with all this intense labor, cars sold for under $3000. What happened? And now the cutters in the machine tools fly, no need for hand made patterns for the machine to trace. Probably zero testing of the fabric like then. Things then seemed more quality, pretty much zero recalls etc.

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Re: Fisher bodys

Post by Brian P » Fri Jul 24, 2015 11:55 am

Things were a lot simpler and expectations were a lot lower back then.

Pick any survivor 1950s car - one that hasn't been subject to a restoration that "improved" things beyond what the factory originally built - and take a look at the panel gaps and alignment, and compare them to a lowly Chevy Cruze today.

Collision protection has improved. There is much more engineering in the bodyshell and the bodies are much more complex. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1_ptUrQOMPs

Emission control has improved. If you are behind a pre-emission-control car in traffic - what few of them remain - you can smell it.

Then there's the gadgets. Remote keyless entry (Who would buy a car without it today?). Power windows on the lowliest economy cars. Air conditioning pretty much across the board. The '50's car had an optional AM radio. Today ... AM, FM, satellite, bluetooth, USB, you name it. Navigation systems. Entertainment systems for the kids in the back seat.

That '59 Chevy had a two speed Powerglide that was almost always in the wrong gear (because its two choices were almost never right). The new ones have six ... seven ... eight ... nine speeds. You can have a hard launch off a standing start AND you can have quiet and economical highway cruise without having to swap rear axle ratios.

ABS. Traction control. Stability control. Airbags. Disk brakes.

And corrosion protection has improved. I live in the rust belt. Cars don't fall apart in 6 years any more. The steel is better (Thinner - lighter - but stronger and more resistant to corrosion.) The paint is better. Urethane base/clear didn't exist in the fifties.

Steering is better, suspension is better, tires are better.

There weren't recalls in the 1950's because the government agency that administers recalls didn't exist. Safety was scarcely an engineering objective back then. Besides, expectations were lower - and the legal system wasn't as onerous.

And despite the complexity, vehicles today are more reliable and last longer. No, you can't tweak the ignition timing with a screwdriver any more ... but you don't have to.

I can think of no objective way in which a 1950s car is technically superior to anything today. The "fixable by backyard mechanic" factor might have been better back then ... but back then the backyard mechanic HAD to fix things frequently.

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Re: Fisher bodys

Post by pdq67 » Wed Aug 12, 2015 11:51 am

Probably the most fix-it friendly car made was the early V-Dub "Beetle"!

Fenders bolted on, engine dropped out by removing something like 4 bolts and a couple of other minor deals. Two guys could pack the engine off!

Wasn't fast or safe, much less not all that good on gas mileage, but it was easy to fix. Hell, the Hippies fixed them all the time!

Did they make 10,000,000 of them??

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Re: Fisher bodys

Post by Brian P » Wed Aug 12, 2015 8:11 pm

More than double that ... about 21.5 million.

The air-cooled Beetle was indeed a simple fix-it-yourself-friendly car. BUT. No A/C. No power windows. No ABS (heck, drum brakes all around for most of the production run). Pretty much no crash protection.

And yet ... you had to be under there tinkering with valve clearances and spark plugs and ignition timing on a regular basis AND you couldn't run extended oil change intervals with those cars.

The modern car is not friendly to the do-it-yourselfer for anything but the most basic tasks ... BUT ... usually you never have to do anything other than what's in the maintenance schedule, and those intervals are a whole lot further apart than in the old days.

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Re: Fisher bodys

Post by exhaustgases » Thu Aug 13, 2015 4:58 pm

My point is the cost. Its way easier and cheaper to build a car now especially if they don't change something every year. There is really no reason other than having to pay for tons of office buildings and pensions for the price to be so high now. In those days people actually had to work, no robots, cnc and all that.
And it took more people in the factories to accomplish what is done now. And all that ease of maintenance we have now is thanks to the Japanese manufactures and then came the copy cat Detroit stuff and everyone else making cars now.

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Re: Fisher bodys

Post by Brian P » Thu Aug 13, 2015 6:14 pm

It would be easier and cheaper to build a car with the same level of sophistication as back then ...

... but the modern car has crash structures and assembly tolerances and chassis stiffness that the designers of the old one would never have dreamed of, and that's not including the complete systems that the modern car had that didn't exist back then. Airbags. ABS. Stability control. Touch-screen on-board navigation system with satellite radio and Bluetooth. And plenty more.

The increase in vehicle complexity has offset the automation improvements.

Also keep in mind that a '59 Chevy was a '59 Chevy. (Anything beyond that was only changes in trim and minor components, the bodyshells were all the same.) OK I suppose you could pick between a '59 Chevy car and a '59 Chevy pickup or a '59 Corvette. Now go into that dealer. Large pickup (Silverado), large truck-based SUV (Tahoe/Suburban), mid-size pickup (Colorado), large passenger SUV (Traverse), medium passenger SUV (Equinox), small passenger CUV (Trax), large car (Impala), medium car (Malibu), compact car (Cruze), subcompact car (Sonic), mini car (Spark), environmentalist car (Volt), plus sporty cars (Camaro, Corvette) and I've probably missed a couple. The yearly cosmetic makeovers have been replaced by a plethora of concurrent models ...

Keeps me busy. I work on the automation / tooling side of it all.

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Re: Fisher bodys

Post by woody b » Thu Aug 13, 2015 8:54 pm

A lot of people (including myself) like to dream of the cars of yesteryear, but there's really no comparison. Drive around...whatever town you live in, or near. Look at all the places that used to be garages, but are now closed, or something else. They look at all the cars on the road, and how many miles people drive now. There's a lot less garages, but way more cars on the road, and way more miles driven. When I started in this business people had to get their chokes adjusted every spring, and every fall. If they went over 10,000 miles or so without plugs, points, cap, rotor ect their car wouldn't start one cold morning. Brakes every 20 or 30K, pack wheel bearings, change v belts every year or 2, which would be 10 to 20K. Suspension parts even wore out more often. Back then 100,000 was a bunch of miles.

My 2015 Silverado has 355 horsepower, and gets over 20mpg with me driving 10 miles to work every day. Like others said, it's got a BUNCH of buttons, and features. I listen to music from my phone via Bluetooth most of the time while driving. Hot heat, cold AC, power steering, big brakes, ect. My 1965 Chevy truck I had 35 years ago had 220 horsepower, got 12 mpg, no AC, decent heat, that you reached under the dash to change to defrost. It did have a good AM/FM 8 track I installed though.


Old cars have more "soul" though.
I used to be a people person, but people ruined it.

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Re: Fisher bodys

Post by MOREHORSEPOWER » Mon Aug 17, 2015 12:25 am

exhaustgases wrote:My point is the cost. Its way easier and cheaper to build a car now especially if they don't change something every year. There is really no reason other than having to pay for tons of office buildings and pensions for the price to be so high now. In those days people actually had to work, no robots, cnc and all that.
And it took more people in the factories to accomplish what is done now. And all that ease of maintenance we have now is thanks to the Japanese manufactures and then came the copy cat Detroit stuff and everyone else making cars now.
$3,000.00 in 1959 is like $50,000.00 today . Inflation !!! And it is not getting any better .

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Re: Fisher bodys

Post by Dan Timberlake » Sun Aug 23, 2015 11:58 am

I think there was a golden age somewhere in between, at least for some makes. Good reliability, decent crash protection, some amount of repair-ability by the likes of me.

The amount of electronics on new vehicles remains a question mark or even has proven to be a road block to exceeding 100,000 miles without trauma.
These multi-speed automatics especially look suspiciously like expensive time bombs to me.

Some folks that "own" late model BMWs are eager to tell their tales of "thank g*d it was under warrantee" and " I'm going to sell it just before the warrantee runs out, and never buy another." Some from mechanical failures, many from repeated electronics issues.

Maybe this view is tinted because as a mechanical guy I lean toward mechanical solutions.
Henry Ford I reportedly harbored such a suspicion of hydraulic brakes Ford cars used mechanical brakes until the very late 1930s.
Maybe big trucks too.
http://fordofwestmemphis.blogspot.com/2 ... rucks.html

As might be expected they required individual adjustment to work properly.
http://theoldmotor.com/wp-content/uploa ... /FordI.jpg
http://theoldmotor.com/?p=66209c

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Re: Fisher bodys

Post by DanE2 » Tue Aug 25, 2015 8:25 am

Bought my first new car in 1960, and have had many since on a regular basis and every one was a performance version and I have watched the progress in engineering as time has gone along. My present vehicle is a Ford Raptor and I am amazed at the engineering in that vehicle. BUT, the most fun vehicle I have owned as a daily driver was a 1960 F100, short bed pickup with a 460" FE. I set the entire vehicle up for a basic road racer for the street and I beat on it at every occasion that allowed me to. Changed gears a 7000 RPMs on a regular basis. Damn, that vehicle was fun and it was simple, not like the Raptor.

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Re: Fisher bodys

Post by pdq67 » Thu Sep 17, 2015 11:58 pm

"decent crash protection,"

Used to be it was the DRIVERS responsibility to drive right, NOT the Gov. mandating what you can drive!!

People too stupid to check the air in their tires!! Gimmie a break!! OK, now we have MANDATED tire pressure sensors that add COST to each vehicle!!

When was the last time you saw somebody laying dead on the sidewalk at the corner of a busy intersection from SMOG POISONING?????

Did I hear you say NEVER????

I bet that NEVER just cost us a $1,000,000,000,000 or so in inflated vehicle costs...

I know, I will shut up!!

pdq67

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Re: Fisher bodys

Post by Robert Kane » Wed Sep 30, 2015 12:38 pm

Brian P wrote:Things were a lot simpler and expectations were a lot lower back then.

That '59 Chevy had a two speed Powerglide that was almost always in the wrong gear (because its two choices were almost never right). The new ones have six ... seven ... eight ... nine speeds. You can have a hard launch off a standing start AND you can have quiet and economical highway cruise without having to swap rear axle ratios.


There weren't recalls in the 1950's because the government agency that administers recalls didn't exist. Safety was scarcely an engineering objective back then. Besides, expectations were lower - and the legal system wasn't as onerous.

And despite the complexity, vehicles today are more reliable and last longer. No, you can't tweak the ignition timing with a screwdriver any more ... but you don't have to.

I can think of no objective way in which a 1950s car is technically superior to anything today. The "fixable by backyard mechanic" factor might have been better back then ... but back then the backyard mechanic HAD to fix things frequently.
I agree except, today's cars have 6 gears and STILL are never in the right one!
Robert

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Re: Fisher bodys

Post by pitts64 » Sat Oct 03, 2015 9:18 am

I think quality got better in 1968..

I have a 64 Bonneville that needs 2 degrees more caster on the passenger side to go straight, never been hit.. I took it to a frame shop once and the old guy said they were all bent from the factory.. The welds look like they were by a tech school... :(

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Re: Fisher bodys

Post by exhaustgases » Sun Oct 04, 2015 12:52 am

MOREHORSEPOWER wrote:
exhaustgases wrote:My point is the cost. Its way easier and cheaper to build a car now especially if they don't change something every year. There is really no reason other than having to pay for tons of office buildings and pensions for the price to be so high now. In those days people actually had to work, no robots, cnc and all that.
And it took more people in the factories to accomplish what is done now. And all that ease of maintenance we have now is thanks to the Japanese manufactures and then came the copy cat Detroit stuff and everyone else making cars now.
$3,000.00 in 1959 is like $50,000.00 today . Inflation !!! And it is not getting any better .
Lets see so what was a good wage in 59 ? Lets use $2.00 per hour, average new car 1,800 at most. Ratio 900 . And in 2015 new car 45,000 wage 30 per hour. Ratio 1500 . And remember trucks even the heavy 2 ton models were usually cheaper than cars then. Trucks now would make that ratio 2000 so naaaa cars and trucks cost way more than a wage nowadays. And houses way way more than back then per unit wage. House in 59 maybe 12,000, ratio 6000.
House in 2015 400,000 ratio 13333, yeah like more than double against a decent wage. Plus now taxes eat maybe 2/3 rds more of the wage than back then. So many hidden taxes, on everything now.

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