High Performance Big Block Cadillacs
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Author Topic: Owners Stories of a couple '56 Cadillacs  (Read 2586 times)
~JM~
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« on: March 12, 2008, 08:17:26 PM »

Our Cadillac History

By Stevenson

Our 1956 Sedan de Ville is in very good original condition with less than 30K original miles. We still have the original sales receipt and a lot of the original paperwork. The car was originally purchased brand new by a Pharmacist in Des Monies, Iowa from Betts Cadillac. The Pharmacist traded in a 1954 Cadillac on the new Sedan de Ville which he apparently referred to as his “dream car”.

Unfortunately the Pharmacist soon died after only enjoying his new car for two years. His wife continued to care for the car having it serviced and stored every winter and again re-serviced in preparation for driving it every summer.

Because the Cadillac had meant so much to her husband she was very reluctant to part with it. But having known the Pharmacist for several years, my wife’s Uncle was able to finally convince the now aging wife to part with the car but with one condition that the Cadillac would always be very well cared for. We acquired the car approximately 9 years ago after her Uncles death from my wife’s relatives in Iowa.

True to his word, while the Cadillac was under his care my wife’s Uncle assured that the Cadillac was always impeccably maintained and very well cared for. However after his death the car was stored in a barn for one winter and when I obtained it the cold weather cycling had taken its toll on some of the fragile paint. Because of these paint problems I’ve had some minor restoration work done to prevent damage to the car. The old girl had a few areas where the original paint had spider cracked over the years and the cold weather had resulted in some of the paint flaking away exposing some small areas of bare metal. These cracked areas were restored and repainted. However, the car was not completely repainted and still has a large majority of the original paint.

The interior is also in very good condition with the seating areas and carpet showing absolutely no wear. However the white leather upper portion on the front seat does have some minor (superficial) cracking (again probably due to the cold weather it’s seen over the years). It has had regular oil changes and until 15 years ago was always serviced at Betts Cadillac in Des Moines. The engine, carburetor, transmission and rear end have never been opened and the valve covers have never been off the car. The Cadillac has never suffered an accident, still has the original shocks, all of the original chrome and still runs on the original factory transmission settings. It is literally silky smooth between shifts and if driven with moderate acceleration from a full stop, these shifts are almost impossible to detect.

Our Cadillac is a joy to drive and will easily cruise with today’s automobiles on the freeways. It’s used primarily for recreation and is driven only on nice weekends when it always attracts a lot of attention, favorable comments, smiles and numerous "thumbs up". We plan to keep and enjoy the Cadillac while keeping the promise our Uncle made to the original owner’s wife. As long as we’re alive the car will continue to be always very well cared for

http://www.hemmings.com/users/138934/story/54.html


* 1956 Sedan de Ville 1A.jpg (121.26 KB, 900x675 - viewed 251 times.)

* 1956 Sedan de Ville 2A.jpg (123.62 KB, 900x675 - viewed 261 times.)
Logged

PS. You don't have enough cam. Grin

...Summit has a kit for $99.... Shocked
~JM~
Shop Keeper
C5
*****
Posts: 1853


« Reply #1 on: March 12, 2008, 08:22:15 PM »

1956 Cadillac Coupe de Ville

By NDRLOR

I first saw this car when its former owner drove it to visit the Dallas Swap Meet at Arlington Stadium in April, 2002.  I instantly recognized that this car had an extremely rare and unique option--a special order all red leather interior of the style found as standard equipment in the convertibles as opposed to the standard Coupe de Ville interior, but available as an option on all models.  Also, the car was original except for paint and had only 51,000 miles on it.  I was tremendously interested altho the owner was not interested in selling at the time.  He let me drive it and it had that completely tight, "all of one piece" feel to it.  The owner ultimately relented in selling the car and I picked it up and drove it home to Waco on Memorial Day weekend of 2002.  It was ordered with literally every option available in 1956--turbine wheels, Eldorado two four-barrel engine, remote trunk release, air-conditioning, Autronic eye--even the original paint was an option--Alpine White, an Eldorado only color--I may return it to that some day.  The car was built on January 13, 1956 and on the daily run sheet in the "Remarks" column at the end are the initials "SPR", which I've never been able to find out what they stand for.  It was delivered on January 23, 1956, at the P. P. Covert dealership in Lee's Summit, MO--it has it's underhood identification tag, but I copied it and keep the original inside.  I did have to have the Hydra-Matic rebuilt as the reverse cone was broken, but it was a reasonably priced job here in Waco.  The cars equipped with the Eldorado engine came with a mandatory 3.36 axle ratio from the factory instead of the 3.07 found in other '56 Cadillacs.  I've always preferred the lower numerical gear and about six months after purchase found a NOS 3.07 gear set on eBay which I purchased for $125 and had installed--it gives highway driving just a nicely relaxed edge over the 3.36 ratio.  The car now has 53,775 miles on it and I try to drive it every couple of weeks.  When I was looking at it, the air-conditioning would not work at all and that was a bargaining point of the purchase.  When I picked the car up, it worked perfectly and continues to do so to this day with no freon added at all.  The water pump had been replaced before I purchased the car and I was puzzled as to why mine, with factory AC, had a four-bladed fan on it--tho't someone may have had sticky fingers.  I found out upon obtaining a  complete set of the 1956 Cadillac Serviceman Bulletins that Cadillac had a "cheap" attack in '56 and discontinued putting six-bladed fans on factory air-conditioned cars--that summer they started having complaints about over-heating and vapor-locking.  Guess what--the August Bulletin instructs installation of a six-bladed fan--what a concept!  Mine was one of the ones that got skipped, but I've since added a six-blader to it. 

http://www.hemmings.com/users/157682/story/225.html
Logged

PS. You don't have enough cam. Grin

...Summit has a kit for $99.... Shocked
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