32 Cabriolet that was in the same Spokane family for 75 years

Hamtown Al

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I'm sorry to report that I'm doing a very poor job of carrying out my declaration a few years ago that,
"I ain't buying anymore cars." I made that bold statement to my pals on a Thursday night at York in 2015. By noon the next day, or there abouts, I had bought a 32 3w coupe! I'm still tweaking on that one to look more traditional but haven't done the interior yet... I was hoping someone would buy it so I wouldn't have to.

Anyway, the latest failure on my part came from somebody posting a link to a car that was for sale that seemed like a good value. Being a good on-line hot rodder, I clicked on it... you know how it turned out!

It is traveling via a shipper right now and hope to see it sometime in the coming week. I'll have a better knowledge of just what I've purchased when it gets here but I feel pretty good about it.

Hamtown Al

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Re: 32 Cabriolet that was in the same family 75 years
« Reply #1 on: April 23, 2018, 02:14:55 PM »
To continue, it is a pretty rare bird for a number of reasons but the biggest might be that it was in the same family for 75 years. A guy bought it on May 5, 1942 and kept it until he passed in 1996 and then it stayed in the family until the end of last year.
 

He traded in a 4 cylinder roadster for the V-8 coupe. Yep, it was a 3w coupe which he later drove to NY to marry this gal he met in the NAVY and drove her back to Spokane. At least that's the story as I understand it right now... like all stories, they are subject to being revised!  ;D

Hamtown Al

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Re: 32 Cabriolet that was in the same family 75 years
« Reply #2 on: April 23, 2018, 02:18:25 PM »
I'm still on the trail of tracking and documenting the history of the car but it is very interesting.
Here's the car in NY in front of his wife's parents house I believe.

Hamtown Al

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Re: 32 Cabriolet that was in the same Spokane family for 75 years
« Reply #3 on: April 23, 2018, 02:27:13 PM »
The owner later, and I haven't gotten a clue yet about how much later other than to know it was done by 1961; swapped the 3w body for a very good cabriolet body that he got from somewhere. Yep, I wonder where that 3w body went, too!
The owner was a pretty good mechanic if not a great one according to some folks I have already talked to.
The car has a neatly narrowed 40 Ford dash for starters and it had a Y block Ford engine in it in 1961.

Hamtown Al

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Re: 32 Cabriolet that was in the same Spokane family for 75 years
« Reply #4 on: April 23, 2018, 02:31:55 PM »
Anybody got any more info on the car?
Apparently I bought it just in the nick of time as I think a couple folks were standing in the wings an getting ready to pull the trigger but my money got there first via bank wire. One of them has already reached out to me to be next in line if I ain't happy or change my mind. Haven't had that happen before so it must be a pretty good car as he managed to get someone local to check it out "in the flesh."
I'll share more of the story as I speak with others and go over my notes.
Apparently the owner worked with another guy at the same company and that guy had a 32 cabriolet, too! That guy kept his, too, until he passed away a few years back. His was green and I've been told the two cars were often seen together. I was fortunate to locate the present owner of the green car and am not sure just what his plans are for that car but that will be his story to tell.
I hope nobody gets upset that I'm planning on new tires and wheels right away. ;D
I'm not fond of the wheels and suspect that the tires are really old.  ;D

TS3X65MPH

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Re: 32 Cabriolet that was in the same Spokane family for 75 years
« Reply #5 on: April 23, 2018, 05:34:11 PM »
Anybody got any more info on the car?
Apparently I bought it just in the nick of time as I think a couple folks were standing in the wings an getting ready to pull the trigger but my money got there first via bank wire. One of them has already reached out to me to be next in line if I ain't happy or change my mind. Haven't had that happen before so it must be a pretty good car as he managed to get someone local to check it out "in the flesh."
I'll share more of the story as I speak with others and go over my notes.
Apparently the owner worked with another guy at the same company and that guy had a 32 cabriolet, too! That guy kept his, too, until he passed away a few years back. His was green and I've been told the two cars were often seen together. I was fortunate to locate the present owner of the green car and am not sure just what his plans are for that car but that will be his story to tell.
I hope nobody gets upset that I'm planning on new tires and wheels right away. ;D
I'm not fond of the wheels and suspect that the tires are really old.  ;D
1 of the first things I do is change the wheels & tires & throw on some headers.I did that to most of my cars growing up,& still do.Go Man Go.
You Aren't Living If Your Windshield Isn't Dirty.

Hamtown Al

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Re: 32 Cabriolet that was in the same Spokane family for 75 years
« Reply #6 on: April 24, 2018, 06:59:02 PM »
Please ignore this posting error.

OOPS Al ;D

Hamtown Al

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Re: 32 Cabriolet that was in the same Spokane family for 75 years
« Reply #7 on: April 24, 2018, 07:01:36 PM »
Like many of the fellows in the Spokane area, the owner regularly traveled the 350 miles or so to the Portland Swap Meet every year. On one of those trips, he purchased plans for brackets that would allow him to put disc brakes, using Riviera calipers, on all four wheels. His son-in-law flame cut the brackets and the owner did the rest.
The car also has a dual master cylinder and hydraulic clutch via hanging pedals on the firewall but I don't know if it all happened at the same time.

Hamtown Al

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Re: 32 Cabriolet that was in the same Spokane family for 75 years
« Reply #8 on: April 24, 2018, 07:05:34 PM »
The rear... I hope!! ;)

Hamtown Al

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Re: 32 Cabriolet that was in the same Spokane family for 75 years
« Reply #9 on: April 24, 2018, 07:06:29 PM »
Somewhere along the line the car got an 8 inch Ford rear with an open driveshaft.

Doug Turnwall, the owner, was also instrumental in getting the Deer Park Drag Strip established along with Dusty Rhodes and others in the early 1952. In March of 1952 they formed the Lilac City Timing Association with Dusty as the first President and Doug as Vice-President and Jim Kennedy as Secretary and Norm Davis as Treasurer.

John Gunsaulis put together a great book called, "Spokane Hot Rodding" that has many old pictures from back in the day along with some outstanding history of the sport dating from the 1940s. I couldn't put it down. Very informative and some great pictures with detailed descriptions with many players and their cars from the period identified.

Deer Park was a vibrant drag strip for many years and the Dragin's Race Team (originally formed in 1954 as the Dragin's Car Club) still have a Deer Park Dragstrip Reunion every September.

Hamtown Al

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Re: 32 Cabriolet that was in the same Spokane family for 75 years
« Reply #10 on: April 24, 2018, 07:10:12 PM »
The guy I bought the car from knew the owner and worked at the same company in the same department but on a different shift than the owner and the guy with the green cabriolet. He happened to run into a guy last Friday that also worked there and he hadn't seen in about 25 years. They got to talking about Doug's cabriolet and that guy said the cabriolet had the Y block and also a 289 Ford and a 283 Chevrolet but not sure of the order of installation.
That brings us to the current engine which is hooked to a 5 spd from an S-10. It is hard to believe but the engine is supposed to be a 1932-1934 FOUR banger that the owner modified to use a downdraft carburetor.
Seeing is believing:

Hamtown Al

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Re: 32 Cabriolet that was in the same Spokane family for 75 years
« Reply #11 on: April 24, 2018, 07:13:09 PM »
There was a problem with the head when he got it that the seller either fixed or had fixed. He says he used the Chevy paint because he had it but realized some red Ford paint might have been more appropriate.
I'm sure the car can use a few tweaks and sprucing up but it supposedly is in pretty good running order now that the seller removed the gas tank and had it cleaned and sealed. He said he removed a secondary electric fuel pump but thinks it needs to be added back. I fully agree and already have one being shipped to me along with a metal fuel regulator.
As things happen, the seller had some last minute issues arise in the fuel system that was starving the carburetor so he rigged up a simple system involving a gas can, some extra hose, and some heavy duty tie wraps to keep it running while being loaded... and hopefully unloaded! Opportunities!
I think the original electric fuel pump can be seen in the bottom of the second picture. I'll find out when it gets here.
How do you like the way the owner tied his heater into the engine water system? Haven't seen that before either that I remember. If it ain't broke, don't fix it.
I'm dying to find out the story behind why and how the owner decided to switch to the 4 banger.
That HAS to be a good story!

Tom

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Re: 32 Cabriolet that was in the same Spokane family for 75 years
« Reply #12 on: April 24, 2018, 07:33:45 PM »
Al, those front disc brake brackets are cast items.  I had very similar ones on my Tudor.  One of the previous owners probably replaced their hand-fabbed brackets at some point, and forgot about it.

Neverthelsss it’s a very cool find! 

jaded iconoclast

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Re: 32 Cabriolet that was in the same Spokane family for 75 years
« Reply #13 on: April 24, 2018, 09:06:03 PM »
Somewhere along the line the car got an 8 inch Ford rear with an open driveshaft.

Doug Turnwall, the owner, was also instrumental in getting the Deer Park Drag Strip established along with Dusty Rhodes and others in the early 1952. In March of 1952 they formed the Lilac City Timing Association with Dusty as the first President and Doug as Vice-President and Jim Kennedy as Secretary and Norm Davis as Treasurer.

John Gunsaulis put together a great book called, "Spokane Hot Rodding" that has many old pictures from back in the day along with some outstanding history of the sport dating from the 1940s. I couldn't put it down. Very informative and some great pictures with detailed descriptions with many players and their cars from the period identified.

Deer Park was a vibrant drag strip for many years and the Dragin's Race Team (originally formed in 1954 as the Dragin's Car Club) still have a Deer Park Dragstrip Reunion every September.

I have the John Gunsaulis book, HIGHLY recommend it, especially for us PNW guys.
Wanted: Used +030 TRW L2249 or Speed Pro 7061P 12.5/1 289/302 ford pistons

Hamtown Al

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Re: 32 Cabriolet that was in the same Spokane family for 75 years
« Reply #14 on: April 28, 2018, 08:59:07 AM »
I forgot to mention that the stock axle was likely dropped in Spokane by the Muir Brothers at their shop on Francis Avenue.
Also, I noted that the car only has one taillight. I am amazed that this car which we believe has been kept together with many of the original parts still intact; never had a second light added if for no other reason than for turn signals. I can't believe this car has survived since 1932 and apparently never had turn signals added. It's got a heater, a 1940 Ford dash, a radio, has been converted to 12 volts, has been converted to hydraulic brakes with four wheel disc brakes using a dual master cylinder, and has pedals relocated to hang from the firewall and use a hydraulic clutch; yet, no second taillight! That driver's window either went up and down a bunch in the winter or the owner just went where he wanted and left it to the other drivers around him to figure out where he was going.
Oh yeah, it also had fog lights. Apparently the owner was primarily focused on the future and where he was going. He owned and likely drove the car for nearly 54 years... with one taillight! :o

Hamtown Al

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Re: 32 Cabriolet that was in the same Spokane family for 75 years
« Reply #15 on: April 28, 2018, 09:01:05 AM »
Doing some more research I find that the car lot where the owner purchased the original coupe was only 1.3 miles from Doug's house. The seller only lives 9 miles from where Doug lived when he bought it 76 years ago.
Talk about a small world!