Newbie here with a 1949 Cosmopolitan

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rmcphearson

New member
13
4
3
Greetings all,

Earlier this year I bought a 2003 Town Car with 75k (in lieu of a minivan) because it has enough room in the back seat for a rear facing child seat. My wife and I have fallen in love with this town car! Knowing my wife's driving record, I initially anticipated a series of unfortunate events involving the exterior of this car. Which got me thinking, if this thing gets banged up beyond economical repair, what would I do with this flawless drivetrain with 75k miles on it? So, I started looking around at some classic Lincoln rollers that need a drivetrain and...low and behold, guess what I found a few miles from here?! A solid 1949 Cosmo 4 door (suicide doors) with no engine for a song. The guy is practically giving this thing away because no one else wants it. The body and frame are in good condition, but it is pretty much a basket case. No engine or transmission. Surprisingly, the dash with all the "jewelry" is intact and in good condition. That was the most attractive part about the deal to me! I mean have you seen the 49 dash?! Here's the thing...

1) I hate the looks of the hardtop 4 door cosmopolitans. I see pictures of red ones, black ones, yellow ones and I want to barf. I have no interest in them.
2) Some of the convertibles such as this one below, are stunningly beautiful.
1606870876074.png
 

CuttingToolGuy

Well-known member
394
1
306
63
Houston
Did you buy it?

My experience with older autos is that the accessories & trim are the hardest to find. Make sure every knob or piece of chrome is attached.

It is a nice looking car.
 

rmcphearson

New member
13
4
3
Hello Cutting ToolGuy,
I gave a deposit and have 3 weeks to get the car. I plan to do so when I move into my new house 3 weeks from now. All the exterior chrome pieces and the fender skirts are there. And the important "jewelry" pieces of the dash are there, and the radio etc. I plan to study the body/frame and reinforce where needed so I can cut the top off to make it a convertible. Then start on the body work.

What kind of cutting tools are you the guy of?

Cheers,
Roland
San Francisco CA
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CuttingToolGuy

Well-known member
394
1
306
63
Houston
Sounds good. You should have a few years to get the body in order before the Town Car is too far gone.

You sound like someone who isn't afraid to take on a project. If the
TC hangs tough & you still need a powerplant some of the 2002 / 2003 Explorers have an aluminum block 4.6 which is about 75# less than our cast iron ones. I would pair an aluminum block with the heads & intake off of a 95' to 98' Lincoln Mark VIII. That would put you right at 300 dependable HP and the TC computer can control it.

Are you going to put in a convertable top as well? I bet one off an 05' to 09' mustang would make a good starting point.

Re Cuttingtoolguy: My day job is to sell the tools machinists use to cut metal to machine shops and factories as well as solutions. I get to work on everything from sub sea drilling rigs to aircraft turbines. I also am a partner in an independent auto repair shop.

I usually hang out in the Town Car sub forum.
 

rmcphearson

New member
13
4
3
I'm not worried about putting a top on it. It rarely rains here in Concord CA and it will be garaged anyway. If I go modern with an engine I was thinking of a cute little 3.9 from an LS. 240hp would be more than enough. I'm a long way from picking a motor though. Stiffening the body before cutting the top off will occupy me for a while.

Thank you for the tips and suggestions! Much appreciated.

I learned to grind my own HSS bits in trade school. I've got an early 1930s Hardinge lathe. Used it in a pinch last year to make a pilot bushing to stuff a mustang transmission into a '62 Falcon Ranchero.

Cheers
 

CuttingToolGuy

Well-known member
394
1
306
63
Houston
I have a little proverb: A machinist can be an operator but, an operator can't be a machinist. I deal with carbide, ceramet, CBN & ceramic.

I hope you start a build thread. I will follow.

And, welcome to the site.
 

rmcphearson

New member
13
4
3
First step is to find some decent tires to get this thing home on. I can get some 235/65R16 Falken's from local PepBoys for $50 right now! Looking for some 16" wheels now...
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rmcphearson

New member
13
4
3
The wheel bolt pattern on the Cosmo are different that modern fomoco wheels. So I'm getting new tires for the original wheels. 235/75/15. That's some serious rubber for a car (more like truck tires!). I also found the correct Lincoln 337 flat head V8 AND Hydramatic (GM) auto trans in Atlanta. Working on getting that powertrain shipped here. If it arrives I may just do a resto instead of a rest-mod.
 

rmcphearson

New member
13
4
3
I finally got a little time to start researching. The paint code is Y-111 which is Admiral blue. That's a pleasant surprise because I hate the current black. I can see some of the blue in spots where the black has worn off. Great news!

There is a 142-G which must be the trim code. Haven't found that code index yet. I might need to buy a body catalog to get that info.

If I turn the lights off in the garage so it's pitch black some of the numbers and pointers on the dash glow in the dark just a bit but not enough to be legible. Here is what I read on page 9 and 12 of the owner's manual:

"The Instrument Lighting System uses the "black light" technique developed during World War II. It's filtered light source passes only ultra-violet or near ultra-violet rays. Instrument pointers and markings are painted with a luminescent substance* that gives off visible light when exposed to "black light" rays. Instuments are made easy to read without distracting light.
*These luminescent paints contain no radium, radio-active material or elemental phosphorous."

I take that to mean the gage cluster light is a black light (6v) and if I buy a black light these things are going to pop and be legible. Shopping for a black light now.
 

rmcphearson

New member
13
4
3
I bought a $10 blacklight at the hardware store.
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