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1957 DeSoto Firedome Restoration
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JGC403
Posted 2018-03-26 3:02 AM (#560494)
Subject: 1957 DeSoto Firedome Restoration


Member

Posts: 14

Location: GREENEVILLE, TN
Car is 90% done, there are just a bunch of little things that need to be finished and some stuff that needs to be fixed to make it correct. I'll post some pictures tomorrow, I already know of some stuff that needs to be changed for it to be correct. I want to update somethings to make it a little more drivable. I want to make it as correct as I can except for the couple of changes I want to do and if I can make the updates and still have them look stock all the better. I am going to change the solid fan out for a clutch fan, change the distributor to Mopar small block with electronic ignition and ad HEI ignition, and last ditch the 2bbl intake for a 4bbl.

The DeSoto lettering that is on the hood and decklid should be gold? I have some time tomorrow and would like to powder coat them if that is the correct color.

The 4bbl engine still used the same type of air cleaner assembly as the 2bbl engines? Only difference is the diameter where the air cleaner sits on the carb?

Are all the radiators the same size? Did the AC cars have a larger radiator?



Edited by JGC403 2018-03-26 3:06 AM




(DeSoto_Hemi_1R.jpg)



(DeSoto_Hemi_2R.jpg)



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Attachments DeSoto_Hemi_1R.jpg (248KB - 41 downloads)
Attachments DeSoto_Hemi_2R.jpg (248KB - 47 downloads)
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57desoto
Posted 2018-03-26 5:51 AM (#560496 - in reply to #560494)
Subject: Re: 1957 DeSoto Firedome Restoration



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Hood/trunk letters are indeed gold. I believe the radiator for AC cars is the same as non-AC cars, but has a shroud and a 6-blade fan. (Non-AC cars have no shroud and a 4-blade fan.) Air cleaners LOOK similar between the 2-bl and the 4-bl carbs, but the 4-bl has a hole through the snout, and a wingnut holds it straight down on the carb. The 2-bl design sits on the carb throat "lip" and there is a clinch ring that goes around the union, with a finger "twist" gadget that closes the ring and clamps the 2 together. The two air cleaners really can't be modified to interchange without major work.
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57burb
Posted 2018-03-26 10:59 AM (#560504 - in reply to #560496)
Subject: Re: 1957 DeSoto Firedome Restoration



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Location: DFW, TX
The 2bbl air cleaner also uses a smaller (shorter) air filter element.
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macedon
Posted 2018-03-26 12:20 PM (#560508 - in reply to #560494)
Subject: RE: 1957 DeSoto Firedome Restoration



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Location: San Antonio, TX
This is off my factory A/C 4dr hdtp 57 Fireflite. My factory A/C sedan 57 Fireflite looks just the same. Well, it's painted and in a car that runs. So not quite just the same. This is what the rad shroud looks like. At least on Fireflites anyhow. Others here might be able to say if the Firedome was the same.



(radshroud.JPG)



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Attachments radshroud.JPG (109KB - 37 downloads)
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JGC403
Posted 2018-03-26 1:39 PM (#560517 - in reply to #560494)
Subject: Re: 1957 DeSoto Firedome Restoration


Member

Posts: 14

Location: GREENEVILLE, TN
Thanks for the replys. I found a 4bbl air cleaner housing I'm thinking of getting to modify to fit a Holley carb.

I found a couple of threads about using the Hayden 2765 clutch. I'll grab a more modern Mopar 5 blade fan. Looks like the swap shouldn't be that difficult. I need to pull the crank pulley and water pump pulley to paint them silver anyways.

What kind of finish should the gold hood and trunk letters have, glossy or flat?
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57burb
Posted 2018-03-26 2:39 PM (#560520 - in reply to #560517)
Subject: Re: 1957 DeSoto Firedome Restoration



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The Holley carburetor will have a larger intake throat diameter than the stock Desoto WCFB (Carter Four Barrel).

Another LARGE concern is that the 1957 Mopars have VERY little hood clearance compared to the earlier cars. It didn't help matters that by 1957 all Hemi engines (Dodge, Desoto, and Chrysler) were tall-deck variants. That's why these cars had such a goofy air cleaner arrangement to begin with. Put a dob of clay on the top of your current air cleaner and shut the hood... you will see just how little room there is. Whatever you decide to do, make sure the hood will fit.

All of the 1957 Desoto letters I have seen were plated and had a brass-like tone that fades over time. This shot of an Adventurer is what I recall all the letters I've seen looking like.



(57_adventurer_hood.JPG)



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Attachments 57_adventurer_hood.JPG (93KB - 42 downloads)
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JGC403
Posted 2018-03-26 8:18 PM (#560544 - in reply to #560494)
Subject: Re: 1957 DeSoto Firedome Restoration


Member

Posts: 14

Location: GREENEVILLE, TN
Thanks for pointing that out, I haven't even considered hood clearance. Looking at how it sites you would think there was plenty of room. I was going to get the 4bbl intake manifold that hothemiheads sells, and that is a high rise manifold and sits 1 1/2" taller than stock. So the only way to switch to a 4bbl is to find a stock 4bbl intake and that isn't going to be cheap. I'll check hood clearance and If I can't make the aftermarket stuff work I'll just keep the 2bbl setup.

http://www.hothemiheads.com/desoto/intake_manifolds/intake_1x4_dual...


Looks like if I powder coat the DeSoto letters with the gold I have it should be a very close to that. I was thinking that if they were supposed to have a shinny more real gold appearance I could try and electroplate them with gold.
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JGC403
Posted 2018-03-26 9:14 PM (#560546 - in reply to #560494)
Subject: RE: 1957 DeSoto Firedome Restoration


Member

Posts: 14

Location: GREENEVILLE, TN
If you notice something that isn't OE correct let me know. I'm trying to bring it back as original as possible.
-I know the side view mirrors aren't correct, I have the originals I just need to get them re-chromed
-I don't think the interior is correct
-Inner fenders should be black, I talked to my dad, they were originally black, he had done a color change. The car was black and blue. The inner fenders were black so that is why he assumed they were supposed to be body color.

Some more pictures:

Edited by JGC403 2018-03-26 9:26 PM




(DeSoto_2.jpg)



(DeSoto_1R.jpg)



(DeSoto_Interior_1R.jpg)



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Attachments DeSoto_2.jpg (246KB - 37 downloads)
Attachments DeSoto_1R.jpg (240KB - 35 downloads)
Attachments DeSoto_Interior_1R.jpg (242KB - 46 downloads)
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JGC403
Posted 2018-03-26 10:30 PM (#560548 - in reply to #560494)
Subject: RE: 1957 DeSoto Firedome Restoration


Member

Posts: 14

Location: GREENEVILLE, TN
More pictures:



(DeSoto_Restoration_3R.jpg)



(DeSoto_Restoration_1R.jpg)



(DeSoto_Restoration_2R.jpg)



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Attachments DeSoto_Restoration_3R.jpg (236KB - 99 downloads)
Attachments DeSoto_Restoration_1R.jpg (241KB - 45 downloads)
Attachments DeSoto_Restoration_2R.jpg (235KB - 33 downloads)
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JGC403
Posted 2018-03-26 11:42 PM (#560551 - in reply to #560494)
Subject: Re: 1957 DeSoto Firedome Restoration


Member

Posts: 14

Location: GREENEVILLE, TN
Is the inside of the hood painted, or insulated?
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mikes2nd
Posted 2018-03-27 12:43 AM (#560554 - in reply to #560494)
Subject: Re: 1957 DeSoto Firedome Restoration


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the rust pics are the before????
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macedon
Posted 2018-03-27 9:17 AM (#560569 - in reply to #560551)
Subject: Re: 1957 DeSoto Firedome Restoration



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JGC403 - 2018-03-26 10:42 PM

Is the inside of the hood painted, or insulated?


Neither.
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JGC403
Posted 2018-03-27 12:16 PM (#560577 - in reply to #560554)
Subject: Re: 1957 DeSoto Firedome Restoration


Member

Posts: 14

Location: GREENEVILLE, TN
yea, that is what the body looked like after my dad dragged it out of a field and stripped the body down 25 years ago or so. Black and blue was the original color, but my mom didn't like it.

Edited by JGC403 2018-03-27 12:19 PM
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tnlowrider
Posted 2018-03-27 9:38 PM (#560592 - in reply to #560577)
Subject: Re: 1957 DeSoto Firedome Restoration



Extreme Veteran

Posts: 500
500
Location: Upper East Tennessee
Let me know if there's anything you need or might want to look at. I live in Bulls Gap and have a few parts cars and may be able to help out. Nice Firedome! VERY RARE in East Tennessee! Tim
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JGC403
Posted 2018-03-28 6:03 PM (#560642 - in reply to #560494)
Subject: Re: 1957 DeSoto Firedome Restoration


Member

Posts: 14

Location: GREENEVILLE, TN
This is gunna sound like a stupid question, but where is the dipstick? I looked around the engine bay for a good 10 minutes and couldn't find it.
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tnlowrider
Posted 2018-03-28 6:36 PM (#560644 - in reply to #560494)
Subject: Re: 1957 DeSoto Firedome Restoration



Extreme Veteran

Posts: 500
500
Location: Upper East Tennessee
The dipstick tube sometimes gets lost. It presses in at the back of the engine near the distributor.
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JGC403
Posted 2018-03-28 7:05 PM (#560645 - in reply to #560494)
Subject: Re: 1957 DeSoto Firedome Restoration


Member

Posts: 14

Location: GREENEVILLE, TN
OK thanks, I'll have to look again tomorrow.
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Leadfoot1000
Posted 2018-04-01 12:12 AM (#560866 - in reply to #560517)
Subject: Re: 1957 DeSoto Firedome Restoration



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Posts: 196
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Location: Southern CA
JGC403 - 2018-03-26 10:39 AM

Thanks for the replys. I found a 4bbl air cleaner housing I'm thinking of getting to modify to fit a Holley carb.

I found a couple of threads about using the Hayden 2765 clutch. I'll grab a more modern Mopar 5 blade fan. Looks like the swap shouldn't be that difficult. I need to pull the crank pulley and water pump pulley to paint them silver anyways.

What kind of finish should the gold hood and trunk letters have, glossy or flat?


On my 57 New Yorker I’m currently installing the 2765 fan clutch and an 18” seven blade fan from a late 60’s mopar, to replace the original six blade fan. I’m also installing a shroud, like the one pictured above, that was removed from a 64 New Yorker, and bolts right up to the sides of the original 57 radiator. You just need to install clip nuts to the existing mounting holes. You should consider getting a fan that will move as much air as possible. My car was running kinda hot on very hot days, I’m hopeful these additions and getting the radiator rodded out (it was about 20% plugged) will solve the issue.
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