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Thread: Car guys!! NEED HELP.

  1. #1

    Default Car guys!! NEED HELP.

    More or less I was wondering if anyone knew much about radio configurations in a 1958 Chevy

    My step dad has spent 12 years restoring his 1958 Impala, currently the only thing that does not work is the Stereo. So for Christmas I am going to get him a full vintage 1958 stereo with Bluetooth and modern internals from one of the specialty radio makers. The issue is I can't find any info on the car's factory speaker configuration. I was also going to throw in a baseline 10" sub with a baby 500w amp, nothing huge, but enough for clear audio over the smithys glasspacks.


    This is the only image I have of the current non working factory radio




    This is the stock image of the aftermarket Bluetooth radio I was looking at. There seems to be a few diffrences but over all they look similar.



    And for Drooling here's a recent pic of the car.


  2. #2

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    Sharp looking lead sled. What we called them back in the day.

  3. #3

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    I remember when the '58 Chevy came out and I loved it then, even as a grade school kid. So.....I don't think cars had stereo speaker set-ups. I'm sure it was monaural. I did some research and found that the first car stereo was made in 1963. Most cars of your era had one speaker, usually located in the center of the dashboard. Does the car have two original speakers in the door? That's where they would probably be if there were two, but I don't think it would be stereo.

    Since you're changing it to a modern set up, put the speakers where you want them. We all after marketed our cars through the many years. I installed an 8-track in my 1967 Pontiac LeManns back in 1970 or 71.

    As for the Chevy, that's what Ron Howard drove in the movie, "American Graffiti". It was a great car but under powered back in its day. A friend of mine had one with a trip set up, but he said it couldn't get out of its own way. Good times.

  4. #4

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    Dogboy nailed it. Stereo configurations weren't even offered until the late sixties, and didn't become commonplace until the 80's. The Imp like most GM cars and trucks had a single dash mounted speaker. Generally, on these older builds you can simply run all fresh wiring and make your few taps as necessary ( Ignition On, Headlamps on, antenna) and you're good to rock.

    Love the ride. What's the drivetrain? Is it stock or did ya go the simple maintenance route (350 SB with 700r4)??

  5. #5

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    Quote Originally Posted by dogboy View Post
    As for the Chevy, that's what Ron Howard drove in the movie, "American Graffiti". It was a great car but under powered back in its day. A friend of mine had one with a trip set up, but he said it couldn't get out of its own way. Good times.



    Quote Originally Posted by ProudPaddedBro View Post

    Love the ride. What's the drivetrain? Is it stock or did ya go the simple maintenance route (350 SB with 700r4)??
    Yeah this one ain't no slouch. It's got the factory 348 V8 and tri-pack carb setup but it's also a mild street build engine with a small 30 over bore, and a cam. He also ditched the factory auto trans for a Muncie 4-speed and a Hurst floor shifter and the rear gears are 4.11 I think. It's wicked off the line and those glasspacks scream under full throttle, can hear the car up to 8 city blocks away under throttle.

    And yes he originally got the car after falling in love with Howard's in American Graffiti. For the most part he solved the under powered situation with a manual swap for better pedal response and lower gearing to bring the torque up a bit. It's not a top end car and quite unpleasant at freeway speeds (high RPM exhaust drone) but around town it's a rocket.

    Sent from my SM-G955U using Tapatalk

  6. #6

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    Back in those days we also installed a rear seat speaker for HiFi. You can open the trunk and check for speaker cutouts in
    steel at the rear window. Some had two cutouts while some had one. I had a 57 Ford where I had installed one. I think by
    then the radios were transistorized rather than tube type with a vibrator.

  7. #7

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    I put a 4:11 gear in my Pontiac LeManns. That does make a big difference in terms of exhilaration.

  8. #8

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    Click image for larger version. 

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    This is mine.

    - - - Updated - - -

    Click image for larger version. 

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    This is mine. with a 4.86 gears

  9. #9

  10. #10

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    In 1958, AM monaural was it as far as automotive sound. FM stations didn't begin broadcasting stereo until a few years later. I don't know of any auto manufacturers that even offered FM radio at the time, although aftermarket units were available. Remember that transistors were still a new thing. In 1958, they hadn't yet completely supplanted vacuum tubes, even in automotive applications.

    A couple thoughts.... It might be possible to use the original fascia and knobs over a newer 'works' behind the dash to preserve the original look. If you're driving content via bluetooth, the works could actually be anywhere, unless you wanted to use the knobs for tuning and volume for authenticity's sake.

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