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Ecklers AutoMotive
Username Post: Lessons Learned Daily Driving a 59        (Topic#357705)
TYTILIDIE 
"2nd Year" Gold Supporting Member
Posts: 214
TYTILIDIE
Age: 43
Loc: Colorado Springs
Reg: 10-21-15
08-18-19 05:57 AM - Post#2773455    

I have been daily driving this car since November. Here is what I have learned. If there is UV glass out there, BUY IT!! It gets unbelievably hot in these cars with standard clear glass. Furthermore, the sun is just piercing on your skin. Who would've thought right? I had the windows tinted to combat with 80%. So far, it has definitely cut the heat down and is barely noticeable.

The other real downer to the non UV glass is that my package tray, door panels and seats are all fading FAST. It doesn't seem this stuff is made to be daily driving quality, or maybe that's just how it always was. These cars seem to squeak an awful lot. It isn't the biggest problem in the world but, there are definitely days where it gets annoying. Hunting the squeaks is even more annoying.

Wipers, while they work and do OK, it is fairly obnoxious to have to turn the knob off and the wipers don't lay back down on their own. That could be something I wired wrong I am sure.

Handling overall sucks. I mean, we all know these aren't race cars but I have mine handling as best as it can get without changing frames and it is OK for cruising but if you want to hit a turn hard, be careful.

Horn. Oh boy the horn, I can't find any way to make my horn work right. I bought an OE kit and and aftermarket kit and had no luck with either. Read several posts, seems this is one those things you may just have to live without. I didn't think it would bother me much but, people will be people and people cut you off all the time likely because they think you're in an old car and can't drive or go faster than 30. So you have no way to honk when someone sits at a light for 45 seconds or cuts you off or is about to sideswipe you.

Turn signals. No matter what I do, they just never seem to work right. It is a terrible design to begin with.

Washing the car. Royal PITA. You can't go through an automatic car wash or the brushes might rip trim off. Hand washing is a blast because there are so many nooks, crannies and complex areas, just really time consuming. If I employ the help of my kids, we can get it done inside and out in about an hour.

Reflections. They are EVERYWHERE! Newer cars aren't reflective from inside the car usually. These cars have shiny goodness all over them and there are times when it gets difficult because the sun will reflect directly into your face from the dash board, pillar molding, hood, door handles, etc.

Thumbs up. It is always nice when people think highly of your car. Problem is, when I am so used to driving it around I barely ever think "hey, I am in a 59 here" so I don't always notice people giving thumbs up or equivalent and I am sure they think I am a stuck up censored. It drives my wife nuts how inattentive I am to "The Fan Club". It almost becomes a job. Then having to talk to people about the car their dad owned "just like it" when you're in a rush gets rough too. Love talking cars with strangers but some of these people go on and on forever.

Leaks. Yep, all new stuff and most of it leaks when washing the car. Rain doesn't seem to penetrate though which is great. But you have be careful using a pressure washer. The door seal design sucks at best.

Parking with these crappy mirrors. I love the way look but holy crap, our mirrors suck so bad and my neck cracks ever time I have to back into a parking spot. The rear view is almost worthless. Not the end of the world but on a day where things aren't going well, it gets frustrating.

The big steering wheel can be frustrating as well. Seems to me that coupled with power steering, it feels ultra reactive at times. The big wheel was obviously as big as it was for leverage.

Other than that, it's an absolute blast! I love daily driving this car and would trade it for anything. We take this car everywhere!

1959 Biscayne with Impala Moldings, 5.3l LS Swap, 4l60e trans, factory PCM
1992 GMC Typhoon - Bowtie block and heads, forged everything, PTE76mm Turbo, 4L80E, Stock PCM's

"You'll never get anywhere if you keep starting over".

Me


Edited by TYTILIDIE on 08-18-19 06:26 AM. Reason for edit: No reason given.

 
Ecklers AutoMotive
DonSSDD 
Silver Supporting Member
Posts: 7156
DonSSDD
Loc: Nova Scotia, Canada
Reg: 08-21-01
08-18-19 07:14 AM - Post#2773469    
    In response to TYTILIDIE

Nice that you daily drive it, do you drive in snow being in Colorado ?
The horn and signal lights? A pain to get right and some issues are from poor reproduction parts, some from the setup being real fussy to get right. Keep trying and it may turn out ok eventually. A tiny movement of some of those parts can make them work. One other thing you can do is wire in a small button switch on the bottom on the dash for the horn, out of sight but reachable to blow the horn.
Wipers- there is a troubleshooting process for that not turning off right, it is also fixable and is a common problem. Use rainaway or one or those similar products, they work good at speed.
Mirrors- I got a large stick on convex mirror and put that on the passenger side. For backing up, maybe get one of those wireless backup cameras.
Keep driving that beautiful 59, stands out in any crowd, more looks than a Ferrari, new vette, etc.
Don


63 Pontiac Parisienne Sport Coupe(CDN Chev mechanically (409, 4 speed),62 Bel Air SC (sold), 59 El Camino (sold), 62 Bel Air SC(sold), 63 SWC Vette (sold),
Member #2194


 
CATS 09 
Poster
Posts: 51
CATS 09
Reg: 05-27-12
08-18-19 01:41 PM - Post#2773497    
    In response to DonSSDD

That is a long list, i can identify with a lot of it, I probably couldn’t have put all that together but my 59 isn’t a daily driver.
Steering is something that one has to pay attention too, that large wheel w/P.S., oh boy!
A cool looking 59 does seem to draw a following.
One more negative is how light they get on the road at very illegal speeds, the Silverado handles so much better.



 
Chair City 
Contributor
Posts: 487
Chair City
Loc: Thomasville, NC USA
Reg: 01-24-04
08-18-19 05:44 PM - Post#2773511    
    In response to CATS 09

I guess I was fortunate when I redid my 60. It handled like a dream. On fairly level roads it would almost drive itself. The PS worked well.
Never had issues with horn or signals either, always worked fine. I too had the glass tinted except the windshield. Did have glare problem from dash depending on sun angle. Never had any weatherstrip leaks to speak of either.
Keep at it, you will work out the bugs

1960 Impala Spt. Cpe. Now in my son's garage


 
cahartley 
Contributor
Posts: 365

Loc: Central Wisconsin
Reg: 01-16-14
08-18-19 11:02 PM - Post#2773531    
    In response to Chair City

I switch between 3 cars depending on the day.
My '59 Bel Air is the finest riding car I ever owned but I knew that as my first car was a '59 Chevy.
I made the mistake of stopping in at a grocery store.
Parking lots aren't made anymore for cars this big.......
Mine has no power anything and that's fine with me.......so far anyway.
Unlike yours the turn signal works fine as do the wipers.
I don't wash this car but I do wipe it down.
It's basically a survivor car so there are seals that aren't sealing any more and I don't want to test fate at this stage of the game.
Despite its all new interior the exterior is original and kind of ratty but many have told me to leave it that way.......and I will.


www.youtube.com/cahartley7


 
59fins 
"18th Year" Gold Supporting Member
Posts: 2219
59fins
Age: 59
Loc: Surprise Az USA
Reg: 04-07-00
08-19-19 03:56 PM - Post#2773592    
    In response to TYTILIDIE

"Horn. Oh boy the horn, I can't find any way to make my horn work right. I bought an OE kit and and aftermarket kit and had no luck with either. Read several posts, seems this is one those things you may just have to live without. I didn't think it would bother me much but, people will be people and people cut you off all the time likely because they think you're in an old car and can't drive or go faster than 30. So you have no way to honk when someone sits at a light for 45 seconds or cuts you off or is about to sideswipe you.

Turn signals. No matter what I do, they just never seem to work right. It is a terrible design to begin with."

First, take the horns off and hard wire them to the battery to see if that is the problem, if the horn does not work that's the problem, next would be 9 out of 10 times it is ground, outside chance of a horn relay, and I bet it's where it mounts at put a good clean star lock washer between the horn and the body, personally never had that issue.

Same with turn signals, I agree, the turn signal switch is a poor setup, does it not work all the time? or fronts, or rears or just does not work? again I would check the ground, I have seen many 59's when h/l bezel removed, an extra wire from headlight mounting to the fender, and even paint grounded off, not ideal but can be effective. getting the switch on the column can sometimes be a 2 man job one watches while other adjusts or watches if it slides without the switch moving, and if it is slipping you may replace cable as well, or clean out the old one with brake cleaner, blow it out and oil it, original parts are always best it they can be saved (switch and cable) switch is usually the culparate though, they are a very simple design, personally, finding out issues I enjoy as much as driving them, tinkering some may call it. Old cars need work when you drive em, it's probably why many don't get driven.

Bill H.
67 Impala SS




 
lone star 
Contributor
Posts: 201

Reg: 08-24-08
08-20-19 05:06 AM - Post#2773629    
    In response to TYTILIDIE

sounds like a real clunker. ill give u 500 for it....



 
59fins 
"18th Year" Gold Supporting Member
Posts: 2219
59fins
Age: 59
Loc: Surprise Az USA
Reg: 04-07-00
08-20-19 12:27 PM - Post#2773684    
    In response to lone star

  • lone star Said:
sounds like a real clunker. ill give u 500 for it....




Wow,

You sound real positive, look for answers, not .... what ever you were trying to do.

Not everyone has the knowledge to do what may be easy for you, but cutting someone down helped no one, but maybe your ego?

Solutions

Bill H.
67 Impala SS




 
lone star 
Contributor
Posts: 201

Reg: 08-24-08
08-21-19 05:51 AM - Post#2773740    
    In response to 59fins

  • 59fins Said:
  • lone star Said:
sounds like a real clunker. ill give u 500 for it....




Wow,

You sound real positive, look for answers, not .... what ever you were trying to do.

Not everyone has the knowledge to do what may be easy for you, but cutting someone down helped no one, but maybe your ego?

Solutions



fins, it was a joke...sarcasm...






 
rcr3 
"15th Year" Silver Supporting Member
Posts: 3171
rcr3
Age: 67
Loc: MANHEIM PA. U.S.A.
Reg: 11-24-02
08-21-19 06:49 AM - Post#2773748    
    In response to lone star

That's how I took it.

'67 Camaro survivor
'06 Z71 Sierra Ex Cab
'37 Chevy cp.SOLD!!6/7/14
'74 Nova Custom cp.
'73 Nova pro-street project
'17 Chevy Trax LT
'00 S10 Ex cab






 
Eth727 
Silver Supporting Member
Posts: 204
Eth727
Loc: San Diego
Reg: 04-17-19
08-22-19 09:06 AM - Post#2773810    
    In response to rcr3

I have the same issues. Hey it's only a 60 year old car.



 
Bruces 57 
Frequent Contributor
Posts: 2417

Reg: 01-03-07
08-22-19 01:43 PM - Post#2773825    
    In response to Eth727

Hello;
I bought my 57 chevy years ago! From Florida, drove it home from the coast to Orlando and have not stoped working on it to this day that was about 15 years ago!
I have over the years done lots of projects to this car! New CPP 500 box was nice! All new wiring was almost the best mod I did!
Recently did all 4 corners from Disc Front Drum rear to all Willwood disc!! Also did new radiator, Serpentine system, AC, Changed my carburetor from Edelbrock to Road Deamon! That stopped the boiling in the carb!!!!
Just today I looked at how I paid someone to ad my Dakota Digital VHX gages and the fuel sender which has been "quirky" was grounded with an Alligator Clip (JHC!!!) which had tons of crud and wasn't grounding very good NOW! It's just fine!!
Yeah, my horn doesn't work right either!!! Next just ad a horn button!!!
Enjoy the journey! its all there for you to accomplish!! Make your ride the best
P.S. I know that some window tint shops have film that can stop all of everything you are complaining about!!

Bruce



 
55Redneck 
Ultra Senior Member
Posts: 14550

Age: 59
Loc: Hedley B.C. Canada eh!
Reg: 06-24-00
08-22-19 05:59 PM - Post#2773834    
    In response to Bruces 57

I have a 67 Belair and what I find rather annoying is when the sun is behind you, I get all kinds of blinding glints off the chrome knobs (lights, wipers ect) and the worst one for me was the flashes off the 3 chrome spokes on the steering wheel. A minute or two with a roll of electrical tape fixed the spoke problem, no more blinding flashes in the morning heading west to the golf course. I do like the fact that I can fit 2 large golf bags on three wheel folding carts in the trunk with ease, and my stock 283 knocked down 25 mpg's on it's last tank of fuel.

In memory of Mike McVeigh, the Mad Springwhacker.


 
59fins 
"18th Year" Gold Supporting Member
Posts: 2219
59fins
Age: 59
Loc: Surprise Az USA
Reg: 04-07-00
08-23-19 04:59 PM - Post#2773908    
    In response to lone star

  • lone star Said:
sounds like a real clunker. ill give u 500 for it....



Sorry , I can be the same way, but I have seen that run good knowledge away, and knowledge is what allot of us come here for. plus I know it's not my place, but, I always loved this forum, learned more than I ever expected! just like to see it remain the same.
Plus and I am on edge, (no excuse) so that's why I have been poking around, I miss it, the 67 forum is not as informative as this one is.


Bill H.
67 Impala SS




 
kingkreeton 
"6th Year" Silver Supporting Member
Posts: 1324
kingkreeton
Loc: Houston TX
Reg: 04-15-11
08-24-19 09:07 AM - Post#2773945    
    In response to TYTILIDIE

I always had issues with my horn on my 64 until I replaced the entire steering wheel with a custom one and the horn now works great. The new steering wheel is smaller and no longer rubs my thighs. You could probably kill two birds with one stone if you wanted to replace the steering wheel with a smaller more modern one.




Shane
64 Impala SS:
Chevy Performance 350HO
4 Speed Muncie

Proud member of Big Blue Nation, University of Kentucky Basketball. "Go Big Blue"


 
TYTILIDIE 
"2nd Year" Gold Supporting Member
Posts: 214
TYTILIDIE
Age: 43
Loc: Colorado Springs
Reg: 10-21-15
08-31-19 05:03 AM - Post#2774542    
    In response to kingkreeton

I thought about getting the smaller wheel but I love the look of the factory wheel. I hit a bump hard the other day and now I have this additional rattle going on. I put the car on the lift and can't find anything. Not sure even where it is coming from.

I had a nightmare recently that I was backing up my Silverado and somehow managed to back into the 59. I barely hit it and the rear of the car was totally devastated. Where the taillight area meets the "floor pan" the spot welds all ripped apart and when I look into the hole, I could see that the entire area where the package tray is came apart. I thought man, I know I don't do this for a living but you would think you could spot weld better. When I woke up I was panicked. I was so thankful that it was just a dream.



1959 Biscayne with Impala Moldings, 5.3l LS Swap, 4l60e trans, factory PCM
1992 GMC Typhoon - Bowtie block and heads, forged everything, PTE76mm Turbo, 4L80E, Stock PCM's

"You'll never get anywhere if you keep starting over".

Me


 
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