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56 coronet D-500
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Joj
Posted 2004-05-30 9:37 PM (#6759)
Subject: 56 coronet D-500


Member

Posts: 5

Hi all!

I recently (last week) accuired a very nice, numbers matching with docs car, as described above at auction.... It has been restored in the last 10 years or so.

This car came with a 2-4 set-up (in the trunk) and also came with a couple of panels that appear to cover up the space on the fire-wall where the heater assembly rests. I was told this quad set-up could be special ordered at the time these cars were originaly sold.

I was wondering if these panels were part of the "package" or what? What type or make intake manifold came with the 2-4 set-up made for this car? Mine is an offenhauser, and I don't know if it's correct.

I have been puzzled by the lack of info out there on the world wide web regarding these cars, and any leads in the right direction for obtaining info would be greatly appreciated.

Joel
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Doctor DeSoto
Posted 2004-05-31 12:35 AM (#6778 - in reply to #6759)
Subject: RE: 56 coronet D-500



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The Offy manifold would not be original factory equipment. Do the carbs have the numbers tags still on them, and what numbers are they? This will tell you if they are correct to that application. I have never seen a 56 D-500 with correct D-Q's. They were all 4bbl 315 Hemi cars. That is not to say it could not have happened, I just have never seen it. Post those numbers and I'll see if I can't tell you what they were made for.
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DeSotohead
Posted 2004-05-31 7:12 PM (#6806 - in reply to #6778)
Subject: RE: 56 coronet D-500



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The correct dual quad setup would be a factory aluminum intake manufactured for Chrysler by Mercury Marine.
It would have a seven digit part number folled by a dash and another number . I have this number somewhere, but cannot find it right now. So the Offenhauser is not the correct manifold.
Also, the carbs on this should br WCFBs, with part numbers same as those on 1955 and 56 Chrysler 300s (and ealy 56 DeSoto Adventurers).
Sorry for being vauge here, but all my reference books are packed for moving end of this week, so unavailable at the moment.
Anyway, there is at least one true unrestored 56 D500-1 in existence, owned by Tim DuPont in Colorado.
If you post part numbers, I am sure he can confirm if your vehicle was ever intended as a D500-1.
If so, it would have had different gearset for the trans to be installed (also in the trunk with the manifolds and carbs), and the suspension and brakes would have been borrowed off an 56 Imperial, including the 5 x 5.5" bolt pattern wheels.

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DeSotohead
Posted 2004-06-01 7:38 AM (#6839 - in reply to #6806)
Subject: RE: 56 coronet D-500



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Added content:

The intake manifold casting number for a true D500-1 is 1733878.
The WCFB Carter number is 2317-S (both carbs).

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Joj
Posted 2004-06-06 12:35 AM (#7027 - in reply to #6759)
Subject: RE: 56 coronet D-500


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Posts: 5

It was my understanding ( Chrystler restorers club may 96 issue) that the dual quad set-up was the last option made available for the D-500, and they were NOT installed at the factory, but were a special order. This set-up voided the warranty on an automatic car according to the same article. I also believe from the article that the 100 marine intakes were made for the for racing ONLY version and were installed at the factory. The article offers no info on the rest of the intakes.

I have an original numbers matching D-500 that came with a dual quad set-up in the trunk. They are WCBF, but there is no "tag" on them. The aluminum offy intake has no numbers on it anywhere, and it doesn't appear anything has been ground off.
I believe I have the original four barrel, the correct two quads, questionable intake, and a brand new weber carb on the car now.

Does anyone know if these firewall plates were part of the "package" to cover up the heater panel if and when removed?

The article also stated there were AT MOST 8255 D-500's produced in 56, and that due to the many who went to the Police and racing ventures, that at the time of muscle cars.

Thanks for the assistance all. Any more will be greatly appreciated.

Joel
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Joj
Posted 2004-06-06 12:43 AM (#7028 - in reply to #6759)
Subject: RE: 56 coronet D-500


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Posts: 5

LOL

Hunter S. Thompson? I don't suppose you have read Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas DeSotohead?

Makes my side hurt just reminiscing about that wild book.

Would the special ordered dual quad set-up be what was refered to in the article as the "street" D-500-1? They seemed to only address the For Racing Only Version, and the "Street" version in the article.

Joel
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DeSotohead
Posted 2004-06-08 5:41 PM (#7143 - in reply to #7028)
Subject: RE: 56 coronet D-500



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Sorry for delay in replying, but as I am in process of eventually relocating to Virginia, my company has decided that I should stat a little longer in Michigan. Of course, already sold the house, moved everything out last week to a corporate apartment, no phone, and only got a cable modem installed this past Monday.

So,,,to get back to D500-1 discussion, the original manifolds were to be made of iron. After the MOPAR folks perfected the cast iron screen door trying to mold them, they turne to Carl Kekaufer (Mercury Marine), who was running C-300s in NASCAR at the time for help. In less than 90 days Carl's boys developed the molds for an ALUMINUM intake for the engine. Of course, Carl was also running Dodges in short track events, so this was in his best interest.

About 100 or so of the actual D500-1s were produced in 1956. About 20 or so went to California Highway Patrol, where they were promptly disused because of I guess driveability issues (figures...theyy were race cars under the skin). About anothor 10 or so I think went to the New Jersey Highway Patrol, who I guess liked them better.
The rest were bought up by private owners for racing. Mostly under local dealer sponsorship.

I think Tim DuPont's was bought for drag racing, if I remember, but must not have been abused too much, because it has survived, and is now the best example of how they went together and what is "original" on them.

You are correct that the intake, carbs, camshaft, lifters, air cleaner, and trans gears came in the trunk. By installing this stuff, any warranty went bye-bye.
Brakes were off Imperials, as were the wheels. Springs were from Chryslers. Got MANUAL brakes to clear the HUGE exhaust manifolds.

The camshaft was by far the most aggressive solid lifter cam produced in the 50s, and the engine conservitavely made over 300 HP. Most likely well over 315HP, which made it over 1 HP/CI.

If your manifold says OFFENHAUSER, thenit is aftermarket and not original. The original would have had the casting number I quoted previously. The carb numbers are also correct, as they used the ones for a C-300. The air cleaner is a big oval paper-element unit made by Purolator. It is NOT a batwing oi-bath type like the C-300, 300B, and the 56 DeSoto Adventurer.

Most of the vehicles were based on the Custom Royal Lancer body, although the Coronet (as a Police option) might also have been produced.

BTW....putting a dual 4bbl on a D500 will NOT make it into a D500-1 unless you get that famous "El Kabong" cam to go with it. Maybe that is the difference in a Race versus Street D500-1, but my guess is, if you are going to void the warranty, go ALL THE WAY with the cam as well as the induction system.

If you call Chris Nielson, I think he can still grind that cam.........

Later.

Hank Dozier



PS....Yes, I do have "Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas" somewhere, and the byline indicates my repect for Mr. Thompson's insight into who gets the call when go wrong......

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62chrysler
Posted 2004-06-08 10:21 PM (#7153 - in reply to #6759)
Subject: RE: 56 coronet D-500



Account Suspended (Steve Hobby Alias)

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AHHH Big company USA. Some armchair out there could give a rats butt that your entire life is in a cardboard box for an unknown amount of time. They think they have you by the - - - - - That's why I started my own company
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DeSotohead
Posted 2004-06-08 10:29 PM (#7155 - in reply to #7153)
Subject: RE: 56 coronet D-500



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Location: The not-so-great, dirty-white North ( Michigan)
Steve...

Actually this is BIG Corp Deutschland, and the decision to move my division has been made by Phd Germans (you know, those Herr Professor Doctor types), who have NEVER actually had to deal with US Automotive majors, and never will.
But being Herr Professor Doctors, they know all, so I get to move AWAY from my customer base, and the plants that seem always to need support.
I got about 5 years to go before I can retire, and it will be about that time before (knowing they F**ked up) they move people back.

Of course, the braintrusts that made the decision will have somehow found new positions of authority in other areas, so as to not look like they ever screwed up in the first place.

Me, I will go, and get out ASAP when I can, and then concentrate finally on my old car hobby.

Do I sound too bitter?

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Joj
Posted 2004-06-13 9:38 PM (#7388 - in reply to #7143)
Subject: RE: 56 coronet D-500


Member

Posts: 5

No problem with the delay my friend, I gets pretty busy as well. ......I have lived in Va., twice myself.

I have a May 1996 issue from the WPC ...... Chyrstler Restorers Club, and your information is pretty much correct. Thanks for the reply. This issue dealt exclusivley with the 56 d-500, and the dash ones (500-1s).

The way I read the article was that the first 100 intakes were the beginning of the -1. That these "for racing only" cars as the article calls them had some differences from the d00-1's that were made available to the general public on Jan 12. 56 which I believe the article refers to as the "street version". The articles says the "100" intakes were made after Kiekhaefers request, "to raise the performance level of the D-500 on the nascar circuit". I believe these 100 intakes you have mentioned belong to the "for racing only" version.

I must say, that with the -1s having been offered to the general public, I would have to believe there were more intakes that followed the first 100. The article also said there were 75- 100 of the for racing only versions made (which jives with the original 100 intakes), and estimated there were approx 5-10 thought to excist, but, as of the time of that writing, 96, none had surfaced..The author went on to say that he had owned the "for racing only" car driven by Nicky Colbert, son of Chrystler pres L.L. Colbert from 60-63, and that Nick has since been contacted by a collector looking for the car who estimated this cars value at $200.000.00...I sure hope someone you know has one.:-)

The article repeatedly refers to the "for racing only" D-500-1's and the "street version". The article talks of factory produced "race cars" which I believe had the 2-4s installed at the factory, and also says that the 2-4 set-up was an option NOT installed at the factory. This and the fact that -1's were offered to the public lead me to believe there are 2 different, 500-1's

The article also said there were at most, 8255 D-500's produced, and that due to the toll racing and police efforts took on them, the attrition rate was higher than other vintage cars, and at the time of that writing they estimated a "MAXIMUM " OF 250 d-500S were surviving yet today.

The article did say the 2-4 voided the warranty on the automatic cars, not the 3 on the tree though, it made no other mention of the cam and such in this regard.

The carbs I have on the offy are wcfb's, but there is no tag. The are almost identicle to what I believe is the original carb that came in the container with the 2-4 set-up and fire-wall plates. This intake has no markings or grinding that indicate there was ever a marking other than Offenhauser between the carbs.

I would sure like to see where you got your info, and I would be happy to copy and forward the articles I have on this car to you.

This car I just aquired has the original owners certificate and the motor is correct according to it. I don't know how to positivly id the tranny, but it was cast prior to the cars sale by two months. I do have the #'s off it if you think you could provide help there as well.

The cars vin is 3508317, and the engine # is D-500 1915, so I believe this was the 915th car made as the engine numbers started with 1000 according to the article I have read.

I gotta tell you DeSotohead , this car is beautiful, and I think I stole it. Not really, but I was the highest bidder at a small town auction here in South Dakota.

Maybe I can e-mail you some pics, as I would value your opinion. So far, I know more than anyone else I have talked to around here about this car, and I have only owned the car three weeks and read one article, and I've been pumping all I think may know something............Internet info is fairly scarce as well.

I thought my beautiful 69 chevelle super sport was quite a car, but this 56 dodge gem makes that one look sick.

later............. new mopar nut....Joel



Edited by Joj 2004-06-13 9:57 PM
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Doctor DeSoto
Posted 2004-06-14 2:07 AM (#7393 - in reply to #6759)
Subject: RE: 56 coronet D-500



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" ....I thought my beautiful 69 chevelle super sport was quite a car, but this 56 dodge gem makes that one look sick. "

Well, DUH !

My ex-wife used to say that Chevys are like arseholes ... everybody's got one.

Kinda hard to argue with that.

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dodgelafemme
Posted 2004-06-14 12:13 PM (#7400 - in reply to #6759)
Subject: RE: 56 coronet D-500


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Hi,

I believe the engine numbers started with D500-1001, but I could be wrong.

I have a spreadsheet that I acquired from Bruce Faulkner (used to own two CR D-500's, one a Lancer and one a ragtop) that contains listings of all the D-500's that
he has seen, found or been informed of over the years.

If I recall correctly, I don't think I have seen a number higher than 7,000 for the block numbers.

My own D-500 shows block # D500-6202 and was made in June of 1956, which would have been along towards the end of the production year.

Does your car have the 12" brakes, the upgraded steering, etc. or is it a D-500 special (engine only)?

Is it a Coronet Club sedan or a 2-door HT?

When was yours assembled at the factory?

I have been meaning to put together a D-500 related web page off my regular website, but I haven't had a chance yet.

I have been in correspondence with another new D-500 owner just last week whose parents owned the car since 1957.

It's a manual steering, manual brakes, three speed O/D car with dual rear antennas and spinners!

That should get Doc's pulse racing!



Despite what Kennedy says in his article, I think more than 250 still exist. More are being found each day (like the one I bought which hadn't been on the road in years) and with the high production numbers of this model (6,000 is a LOT for a limited production model), I would bet more like 400-500 still exist. I have seen a lot more D-500's for sale out there than comparable Adventurers.

Feel free to PM me privately for more info.

Later!
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DeSotohead
Posted 2004-06-14 12:35 PM (#7401 - in reply to #7388)
Subject: RE: 56 coronet D-500



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It is possible that Dodge used the Offenhauser intake for 1957 (the one I quoted previously was a 1956 part) after exhausting the Mercury Marine castings. I know that Offenhauser made the 4bbl intake for the Dodge Indy pacecar, so a relationship with Offy was in place.
Even if not absolutely correct, the Offy manifold is a good piece. You NEED that cam, though!
Get it and go scare the plastic cars!

My information comes (mostly) from old-timers I worked with when I first started with Chrysler in 1972. The guys were a font of information on "the good old days" of the 50s and 60s performance. I sat in and let them speak and I listened.

These are the guys who had the tales of the REAL power outputs of Chryslers, Dodges, Plymouths and DeSotos. The ads had a tendency to lie about outputs of everything but the Chryslers, due to Chrysler having veto over budgets of the others. Hence some of the shenanegans of the 1956 Daytona Speed trials. Both DeSoto and Plymouth could have beat the 300B, if not for a little "discussion" with the Chrysler execs who were there.

Make sure you post some pictures of your "steal" for all of us to look at and appreciate!

PS...,I do not mind living in Va. Lived there before while working at the same plant. It is just the timing and how the decisions are made. Right now I can count on adding about 2 years to my Adventurer restoration while I relearn where everything is (or ISN'T) after I get down there, plus organizing a new garage, etc.

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Joj
Posted 2004-06-14 11:06 PM (#7438 - in reply to #6759)
Subject: RE: 56 coronet D-500


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56D500boy
Posted 2019-08-13 12:01 PM (#585960 - in reply to #7438)
Subject: RE: 56 coronet D-500



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Anybody know what happened to Joj (Joel somebody) or his 56 D500 Coronet? I just sent him an email to ask about his engine/car build date for my D500 engine data base but the email bounced back.


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Powerflite
Posted 2019-08-13 9:12 PM (#585986 - in reply to #6759)
Subject: Re: 56 coronet D-500



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You expect someone from 15 years ago with 5 total posts to respond?
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56D500boy
Posted 2019-08-13 10:07 PM (#585992 - in reply to #585986)
Subject: Re: 56 coronet D-500



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Powerflite - 2019-08-13 6:12 PM

You expect someone from 15 years ago with 5 total posts to respond?


Yes and no. I hoped that somebody here knew Joel and could connect me to him and if I got lucky with the email in the meantime, bonus.

So I guess you don't know Joel.



Edited by 56D500boy 2019-08-13 10:08 PM
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