PDA

View Full Version : The human touch



JimC
08-21-2013, 09:16 AM
This is a topic I've always had interest in, but the thread was directly inspired by '66Commander's thread on the nearly 50 year old fingerprint (http://forum.studebakerdriversclub.com/showthread.php?74247-Check-this-out-a-fingerprint-that-has-lasted-almost-50-years!).

In any mass produced machine, a little bit of humanity gets stripped. One looks like the next, which looks like the next, which looks like the next. They roll out the factory as identical twins.

Except that they're not. Every car that was built before robotic arms became the norm was built by a line of human beings. They had senses of humor, families, personality. From time to time, this personality rubs off on a vehicle. Whether it's a comment written on the underside of a door panel, or some anomaly in production, the builders leave their fingerprints (literal and metaphorical) all over these cars.

What I'd love to see pictures of and hear stories about are the anomalies you've found on your cars. What marks of humanity have been found as restorations have begun, or as new-to-you cars have been explored? Then the follow-up question is what did you do about it? Did you preserve the anomaly, or did you fix it to make the car technically correct? My car has been so modified after production that I doubt there's anything left like this, so I suppose I'm hoping to live vicariously though everyone here.

Thanks!

'66Commander
08-21-2013, 09:27 AM
Except that they're not. Every car that was built before robotic arms became the norm was built by a line of human beings. They had senses of humor, families, personality. From time to time, this personality rubs off on a vehicle. Whether it's a comment written on the underside of a door panel, or some anomaly in production, the builders leave their fingerprints (literal and metaphorical) all over these cars.

That was beautiful! :cheers:
So far it is only the fingerprint that I have seen. But there are many secrets to uncover I'm sure. I plan to keep my blank. It has a safe spot sitting in my trunk for now. To me it is what make's the Stude special. That the person who left their print and a small story. Even if I don't know the story, there is a story behind it. And that is something that cannot be beat by the cookie-cutter cars now a days.
Even if it was an imperfection, that is still a legacy of someone that they chose to pass on in the car. Becoming the car's legacy too.

christophe
08-21-2013, 10:17 AM
When I sanded the firewall (engine bay side) of my 63GT, I saw a name slowly appear through the various coats of paint. Obviously, it was written on the bare body before paint, maybe with a chalk.
The first name was not very clear. It could be Lew, Len or Leon maybe. On the other hand, Petri could be distinctly read as the last name. As the final assembly of my car took place in Belgium, I don't know if this signature was made in South Bent or in Bruxelles.
I've always prefered original unmolested cars as my pleasure is to see how it was initially built. I've always considered too that a good car enthusiast must be a good archeologist first.

raoul5788
08-21-2013, 10:27 AM
While not part of the build of my '57 Packard wagon, there are stickers in the back windows from a trip the original owner's family took to Florida. When I restored the car I was careful to be sure not to remove them. They are part of the fabric of the car!

Son O Lark
08-21-2013, 10:35 AM
A quick side note: Recently a Leonardo Da Vinci drawing was verified as authentic because his fingerprint was still indentifiable!

Deaf Mute
08-21-2013, 10:49 AM
TURNING WHEELS or HEMMINGS CLASSIC CARS might like the fingerprint story.

'66Commander
08-21-2013, 10:53 AM
TURNING WHEELS or HEMMINGS CLASSIC CARS might like the fingerprint story.

Here my post about it:
http://forum.studebakerdriversclub.com/showthread.php?74247-Check-this-out-a-fingerprint-that-has-lasted-almost-50-years!

I don't see why I shouldn't tell them.
However its not a long story :/

(Ha, I just realized this is my 100th post. Whoo!)

christophe
08-21-2013, 11:02 AM
(Ha, I just realized this is my 100th post. Whoo!)

You have forced me to make my 300th post!

'66Commander
08-21-2013, 11:07 AM
A quick side note: Recently a Leonardo Da Vinci drawing was verified as authentic because his fingerprint was still indentifiable!

That's amazing! I must look into it.


You have forced me to make my 300th post!

Whoohoo! Two breaking numbers in the same post. High five!

christophe
08-21-2013, 11:17 AM
Whoohoo! Two breaking numbers in the same post. High five!

Gimme five, Ethan!

Son O Lark
08-21-2013, 12:37 PM
[QUOTE='66Commander;771356]That's amazing! I must look into it.

Just Google Da Vinci fingerprint.

'66Commander
08-21-2013, 12:49 PM
[QUOTE='66Commander;771356]That's amazing! I must look into it.

Just Google Da Vinci fingerprint.

Sweet. Thank you.

'66Commander
08-22-2013, 09:41 AM
JimC, I thought I'd let you know I added another picture of the print.
Plus, I wanted to bump this thread. I really want this to catch on. I would love to hear the stories.

Roscomacaw
08-22-2013, 10:01 AM
I've written before about the South Bend Tribune newspaper that was revealed when I took the aging carpets out of a '58 Commander hardtop. Whoever put that paper there, must've been chuckling as they did so. The body to frame bolts had been holding it to the floor all the years it was hidden by the carpets. The car was an early edition if the serial number and the body tag were any sort of clue. The paper was from about mid-September and was easily readable even if it was well stuck to the floorboards. It had been opened fully and laid so to have the front and back pages facing up. There was a small column article addressing union dealings at Studebaker, and I have wondered if some worker was making a statement, in essence, by making that article visible. As I said, it couldn't have been a casual oversight as two of the body bolts had clearly been installed AFTER the paper was laid out!
Funny that you started this thread just now. Yesterday afternoon I was looking for some Studebaker photos taken at a local dealership when I came across a bit addressing this very topic that I'd written for our local newsletter in the mid-90s.

'66Commander
08-22-2013, 10:13 AM
That's amazing. Did you leave it in?
Whom ever it was must have been a statement. It's sad that we are no longer going to find things like that with these cookie cutter cars.

Son O Lark
08-22-2013, 10:47 AM
As I said, it couldn't have been a casual oversight as two of the body bolts had clearly been installed AFTER the paper was laid out!
.

Maybe it was to soak up the beer they just spilled!!

Swifster
08-22-2013, 02:15 PM
I have a San Jose State decal on the rear window from when someone was using the Daytona as transportation to college.

'66Commander
08-22-2013, 02:49 PM
Isn't that over in California?
If so your Daytona made a cross country trip!

Swifster
08-22-2013, 03:38 PM
It did. On the back of my tow dolly. I bought the car out of East Lake Tahoe, CA. Two days to get there and three days to get back. Still have the dent in the hood of my Ranger from the tumbleweed I hit in Nebraska...

Roscomacaw
08-22-2013, 04:21 PM
I tried to get it up, but it was so matted to the floor. It was amazing that it hadn't stuck to the carpet or I'd never have been able to read it.

BobWaitz
08-22-2013, 09:56 PM
When I was in Australia for work in 1990 we toured a section of Sydney where the buildings were built of convict-made bricks. You could still some finger and thumb prints in the bricks.

8E45E
08-22-2013, 10:01 PM
I documented mine here: http://forum.studebakerdriversclub.com/showthread.php?33508-Production-line-hijinks&highlight=tack

Craig

8E45E
08-23-2013, 07:56 PM
The panels on each side of the radiator shutters on Big Bertha have a letter 'A' in the white grease marker on the backsides of them. One factory worker did add his special touch:

http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7218/7246845568_a15f264291_h.jpg

Craig

ed ellis
08-26-2013, 02:12 AM
About 10'years ago,I sold an unmolested, low mileage, unrestored 53 (4h-5k) to Ed Carden in West Virginia. Under the rear right side passenger seat some guy in the factory had tig welded his name in 3" letters "JOE 1953". I have often wondered if anybody else had a car with its own "private VIN" installed by JOE in 1953.

GThawkwind
08-26-2013, 03:27 AM
Ed do you have a picture of this?

'66Commander
08-26-2013, 09:54 AM
?
The panels on each side of the radiator shutters on Big Bertha have a letter 'A' in the white grease marker on the backsides of them. One factory worker did add his special touch:

http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7218/7246845568_a15f264291_h.jpg

Craig

I love it!


About 10'years ago,I sold an unmolested, low mileage, unrestored 53 (4h-5k) to Ed Carden in West Virginia. Under the rear right side passenger seat some guy in the factory had tig welded his name in 3" letters "JOE 1953". I have often wondered if anybody else had a car with its own "private VIN" installed by JOE in 1953.

That is awesome. It would be cool to see.