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1958 Desoto Fireflite Sportsman Barn Purchase
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jpmopar
Posted 2017-10-08 8:16 PM (#549996)
Subject: 1958 Desoto Fireflite Sportsman Barn Purchase



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I'm happy to say that I was finally able to purchase a car this weekend that I've been wanting for years. It's a really solid (for my area) 1958 Desoto Fireflite Sportsman coupe with 83,000 miles on the odometer. I've known about the car for 17 years and have maintained a good relationship with the owner. He's currently 82 and purchased the car in 1963 from the original owner. I've always told him that I'd like to buy the car if he ever decided to sell it, and two weeks ago he gave me my shot! It's been stored in the shed I pulled it from since 1971 and was only parked because of brake issues. The rocker panels need replacing, the front fender tops above the headlights need the typical repair, there's a few small pin holes to patch in the trunk and floor pan, and there's some surface rust on the deck lid. Other than that it's in amazing condition. The 361 4-V turns freely and after installing a battery it seems that most lights and accessories work. I plan to restore the car and repaint it in it's original blue and white. It's been painted once a few shades darker than the original paint. The original paint is a medium blue metallic and looks almost like the late 60's Mopar color B7. I couldn't find this shade of blue on the '58 Desoto paint chip sheet I have, so I looked at the paint code on the data tag. To my surprise I found a 999 paint code. Isn't this the code for special order paint? I'm sure I can find a formula to match. I'm just happy to have the car and I'm excited to start working on it.

Jim



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Lancer Mike
Posted 2017-10-08 8:22 PM (#549997 - in reply to #549996)
Subject: RE: 1958 Desoto Fireflite Sportsman Barn Purchase



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Location: The Mile High City
Congrats, Jim! Let's see some pictures. 999 is indeed the special order paint. Your Fireflite Sportsman coupe must have been a taxicab at some point. It really sounds cool. What options does it have? Sometimes, those Fireflites were really loaded. I imagine if someone took the trouble to order special paint, they may have really gone all out.
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jpmopar
Posted 2017-10-08 8:41 PM (#549998 - in reply to #549997)
Subject: RE: 1958 Desoto Fireflite Sportsman Barn Purchase



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It's actually not that heavily optioned (for a Fireflite). There's no AC and no power windows, but it does have power brakes and power steering. It also has the twin rear antennas and dash clock, but maybe those were standard on the Fireflites...
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ronbo97
Posted 2017-10-08 9:06 PM (#550000 - in reply to #549998)
Subject: RE: 1958 Desoto Fireflite Sportsman Barn Purchase


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Car has a searchtune radio. Pretty rare in a 58 Desoto.

Great score ! Glad that the engine turns freely.

How are the quarters, especially lowest areas behind the wheel wells ?

Ron



Edited by ronbo97 2017-10-08 9:09 PM
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rtmike
Posted 2017-10-08 9:55 PM (#550002 - in reply to #549996)
Subject: Re: 1958 Desoto Fireflite Sportsman Barn Purchase


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Great find! Nice to know they are still out there. Looks complete.
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jpmopar
Posted 2017-10-08 9:57 PM (#550003 - in reply to #550000)
Subject: RE: 1958 Desoto Fireflite Sportsman Barn Purchase



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The lower rear quarters have a few small perforations, but nothing that a one inch wide patch panel wouldn't cover.
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jpmopar
Posted 2017-10-08 10:46 PM (#550004 - in reply to #550003)
Subject: RE: 1958 Desoto Fireflite Sportsman Barn Purchase



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Location: Southwest VA
Here's the data plate.



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56D500boy
Posted 2017-10-08 10:58 PM (#550005 - in reply to #550004)
Subject: RE: 1958 Desoto Fireflite Sportsman Barn Purchase



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PNT =999 certainly isn't what I would have expected based on this:

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Doctor DeSoto
Posted 2017-10-09 12:27 AM (#550009 - in reply to #550005)
Subject: RE: 1958 Desoto Fireflite Sportsman Barn Purchase



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Location: Parts Unknown
999 means special order. In other words, the owner would have to get
the build record from CHS to know what that special order was.

Nice find ! These pop up all the time, right ?

Interesting that it has clear glass.
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miquelonbrad
Posted 2017-10-09 12:16 PM (#550031 - in reply to #549996)
Subject: Re: 1958 Desoto Fireflite Sportsman Barn Purchase



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Congrats! It looks like a great car!

Question to ponder: lets say you were ordering the car in '58. If the paint colours you chose were standard production choices, but the two-tone combination you chose wasn't offered, would the "999" paint code be used?
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mikes2nd
Posted 2017-10-09 1:38 PM (#550037 - in reply to #549996)
Subject: Re: 1958 Desoto Fireflite Sportsman Barn Purchase


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pretty great starting point. Car will be beautiful when done...

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Lancer Mike
Posted 2017-10-09 4:37 PM (#550046 - in reply to #549996)
Subject: RE: 1958 Desoto Fireflite Sportsman Barn Purchase



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Location: The Mile High City
Great looking car, Jim! I was surprised it does not have the bumper guards! Something in my head said Fireflites had them standard. Wrong!
The search-tune radio and rear speaker are wonderful options. The car appears to be very solid, all things considered. For the interior, I really like that the previous owner just had the fabric replaced.
You can get new fabric now, but the heat-sealed vinyl is tougher to replicate. All sorts of potential for this one!

Edited by Lancer Mike 2017-10-09 4:40 PM
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bbrasse1
Posted 2017-10-09 4:57 PM (#550049 - in reply to #549996)
Subject: Re: 1958 Desoto Fireflite Sportsman Barn Purchase


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Really nice car! Can't wait to see the progress.
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Powerflite
Posted 2017-10-09 7:33 PM (#550062 - in reply to #549996)
Subject: Re: 1958 Desoto Fireflite Sportsman Barn Purchase



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'58 DeSotos are really neat cars. Mine is my wife's favorite of all.
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tnlowrider
Posted 2017-10-11 2:52 PM (#550155 - in reply to #549996)
Subject: Re: 1958 Desoto Fireflite Sportsman Barn Purchase



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NICE FIND!...especially for this area where Ford and Chevy ruled back then. I noticed that it has a front fender antenna as well as the dual rear antennas. Interesting!
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mikes2nd
Posted 2017-10-11 4:45 PM (#550160 - in reply to #550002)
Subject: Re: 1958 Desoto Fireflite Sportsman Barn Purchase


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rtmike - 2017-10-08 9:55 PM Great find! Nice to know they are still out there. Looks complete.

 

not really out there anymore... he had to stalk this old guy for 17 years to get one a project like this one...

 

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jpmopar
Posted 2017-10-11 9:04 PM (#550183 - in reply to #550160)
Subject: Re: 1958 Desoto Fireflite Sportsman Barn Purchase



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Well, I wouldn't call it stalking. More like frequent, friendly reminders...
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Lancer Mike
Posted 2017-10-11 10:26 PM (#550188 - in reply to #549996)
Subject: RE: 1958 Desoto Fireflite Sportsman Barn Purchase



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Location: The Mile High City
What's the VIN on this one, Jim? I wonder if this is early production?
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jpmopar
Posted 2017-10-11 10:51 PM (#550193 - in reply to #550188)
Subject: RE: 1958 Desoto Fireflite Sportsman Barn Purchase



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'58 Fireflite VIN's ran from LS3-1001 to LS3-13552, so I'd say this one is a fairly early production model.



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SaratogaFan
Posted 2017-12-03 8:14 PM (#553633 - in reply to #549996)
Subject: RE: 1958 Desoto Fireflite Sportsman Barn Purchase



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Very nice car! It looks like its all there. All those chrome pieces are hard to find.
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jpmopar
Posted 2017-12-03 11:53 PM (#553652 - in reply to #553633)
Subject: RE: 1958 Desoto Fireflite Sportsman Barn Purchase



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Thanks! I'm very lucky to have 1) just had the opportunity to purchase this car, and 2) to have found one both this solid AND this complete.
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34 Airflow
Posted 2017-12-04 12:57 AM (#553654 - in reply to #549996)
Subject: Re: 1958 Desoto Fireflite Sportsman Barn Purchase



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Congratulations, I'm glad to see your persistence has paid off! I am looking forward to seeing this project progress.
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Chrispy
Posted 2017-12-31 3:22 PM (#555317 - in reply to #549996)
Subject: Re: 1958 Desoto Fireflite Sportsman Barn Purchase



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Get the interior nice, get it mechanically straight and drive it just like that. The derilict look is really in right now. Seriously.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-vwcbTr8Oxc

Edited by Chrispy 2017-12-31 3:26 PM
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jpmopar
Posted 2018-01-02 8:48 AM (#555430 - in reply to #549996)
Subject: RE: 1958 Desoto Fireflite Sportsman Barn Purchase



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I think that the older (pre-'55) cars look better with the patina look than the '55-up cars do. I'll admit that the true "survivor" cars usually catch my attention at shows more than the restored ones, but I think this car deserves to be brought back to it's former glory. I do plan on getting it running and road worthy before I start on the body or interior though, so I guess it will be running around a bit "derelict" for awhile...
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Powerflite
Posted 2018-01-02 1:09 PM (#555448 - in reply to #549996)
Subject: Re: 1958 Desoto Fireflite Sportsman Barn Purchase



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I like that plan. That's the way I prefer to work on these. Once you tear it completely apart, it will be many years before it will see the light of day again.
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Chrispy
Posted 2018-01-02 3:27 PM (#555461 - in reply to #555430)
Subject: RE: 1958 Desoto Fireflite Sportsman Barn Purchase



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jpmopar - 2018-01-02 6:48 AM

I think that the older (pre-'55) cars look better with the patina look than the '55-up cars do. I'll admit that the true "survivor" cars usually catch my attention at shows more than the restored ones, but I think this car deserves to be brought back to it's former glory. I do plan on getting it running and road worthy before I start on the body or interior though, so I guess it will be running around a bit "derelict" for awhile...


Its a fad so its not the worst idea to have a plan to make it nice again. I'm just saying ride the wave and enjoy it for a bit, I like your plan as well, gets it moving again!

That cars going to be popular everywhere it goes.

Edited by Chrispy 2018-01-02 3:29 PM
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oldwood
Posted 2018-01-03 4:21 PM (#555545 - in reply to #549996)
Subject: Re: 1958 Desoto Fireflite Sportsman Barn Purchase


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The Snowfackes and Cupcakes are going to be offended by your Derelict comments. Where is my Safe Space??? lol You give us all hope from your purchase which proves that there still out there to be un earthed.
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mikes2nd
Posted 2018-01-03 7:26 PM (#555559 - in reply to #549996)
Subject: Re: 1958 Desoto Fireflite Sportsman Barn Purchase


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the elections over man... let it go..
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Leadfoot1000
Posted 2018-01-04 9:10 PM (#555637 - in reply to #549996)
Subject: Re: 1958 Desoto Fireflite Sportsman Barn Purchase



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What a great car, it’s Delovely!

Edited by Leadfoot1000 2018-01-04 9:11 PM
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jpmopar
Posted 2018-01-04 10:35 PM (#555638 - in reply to #555637)
Subject: Re: 1958 Desoto Fireflite Sportsman Barn Purchase



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Leadfoot1000 - 2018-01-04 9:10 PM

What a great car, it’s Delovely!



Thanks!
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jpmopar
Posted 2018-03-20 8:47 PM (#560218 - in reply to #555638)
Subject: Re: 1958 Desoto Fireflite Sportsman Barn Purchase



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Location: Southwest VA
I just received my letter from FCA Historical Services with a copy of my '58 Fireflite's build card enclosed. They informed me that they weren't able to decode the build card due to "projects and limited staff within the archives". The only thing they did tell me was that the original selling dealer was Leo Adler, Inc., located in Detroit, MI. So, after a six week wait I'm pretty disappointed. I was hoping that they would at least let me know the correct name/color of my "999" special order paint code. (On a positive note, they did return my check uncashed, so it didn't cost me nuthin')... I'll post a copy of my build card in the Fender/VIN Tag and Broadcast Sheet Decoding section.
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