White car with wide whitewalls, looks oddly albino to modern eyes but as we’ve learned in J.P. Cavanaugh’s excellent history of white auto paint it would’ve been the newest thing at the time.
Still, red steelies would improve it so much it would be hard for a modern owner to resist.
I think this actually might have been a really light gray (Dovetone Gray) that Ford offered that year. Their white would have been much more yellow-ish than this shot makes it look.
I think so. But a Mainline would probably be more commonly seen IRL with black
walls. Meanwhile, bring back cream! (like later Lincoln Sultana white). The 1954 Ford cream was Sandstone white (yes, Googled it). No white white.
Here ls my Mother next to her snazzy Ford convertible. I think it’s a 1954. I was 3. We lived in Miami. No plain sedan for her
Hey, thats cool. I love those period photos from cars with their owners. Thanks for sharing.
Thanks. Her next car was a 1956 Thunderbird. Sadly she passed way too young.
Wow, you had a very cool mom!
Both look great. (Being a Crestline the car could have used trim rings though, or the full wheel covers with the Ford crest that came out that year.)
In our family, my late Mom (101 years) was the one who got the newer and/or nicer car.
1954 Plymouth Savoy/1951 Chevrolet Business Coupe with rear seat from a wrecking yard. 1957 Chevrolet 210 wagon/1952 Chevrolet DeLuxe 2-door sedan, 1957 VW Bug. 1963 Cadillac/1962 Chevy II. You get the idea.
My aunt (mother’s sister) and uncle had a nice, fair solution for this. She got the jalopy but the single indoor driveway space. He got the nice car but had to park outdoors – in Montreal. They were a strictly-Mopar family; she always had a Plymouth compact, he usually a top-line New Yorker. I don’t think his ’76 Brougham would have fit in the garage anyway.
Selling the Mainline to Mom was a futile advertising idea. Mom wanted fancy. Mainlines were company cars or cheapskates.
Specific example: In ’55 my parents tried out a ’54 Mainline just like this one, and a ’54 Chevy 210 with two-tone paint. Mom rejected the Mainline.
Before my time, Dad had a Mainline fordor, with a v8 and overdrive. Some friend of his destroyed a gear trying to shift the thing without the clutch, with the overdrive off. Rare for the times, he wasn’t use to clutch driving as he had been living in the US (around 1960)
Funny that you mention that, as I shift my Ford F100 without the clutch all the time, with the overdrive enabled (on) but not engaged.
I never thought of that, Paul. Can any vehicle be shifted without the clutch? I see you take it up in the revs a bit and — what — hold the shifter lightly against the synchros until the dropping revs match up, and let it slip into gear?
I have several standard trans cars, and a gradually deteriorating right leg from a motorcycle accident 12 years ago. I worry that clutching might become an issue over the next decade. Don’t want to give up the MX-5 NA as long as I can still get in and out of it…
Paul will explain it much better, but, as the idea is that with overdrive on and you step off the gas the box is freewheeling, there’s no connection with the engine and it would be like shifting with the engine off. Then again, I’ve never used one so I might be wrong. But it’s true that it can be used, at least some of the time, as a clutchless manual .
Yes, but not easily and always safely, on a manual without freewheeling. Do it your own risk.
But with freewheeling, yes, it’s then it’s easy and effortless, although with my balky old floor shifter, I don’t hurry it. Freewheeling is effectively the same as depressing the clutch; it disconnects one of the two (input and output) shafts in the transmission, which then allows the syncros to align their relative speeds and allow a shift.
You still need the clutch to start and stop.
I do not recommend clutchless shifting on a manual without freewheeling as a solution to a bad knee. It can be tricky and undoubtedly places a lot of stress on components unless you’re really an ace. Even then…
Thumbs up! Thanks, you cleared that up for me. Go to the experts, I always say (to myself). I still have a few years left in that leg as far as i can tell.
Easy to shift out of a gear into neutral (with engine neither under load nor the car deaccelerating) but hard to get into the next gear. Maybe double clutching?
Oh wait, then you are clutching. Twice.
(Didn’t there use to be editing here?)
I’m not using the clutch to shift. The freewheeling acts like a clutch to allow safe, easy shifts.
Circa 1982. Clutch cable on my Holden Gemini broke just into my outer-suburbs-to-inner-city workplace. By careful use of the accelerator, I was able to up and down shift with relative ease. Traffic lights were dealt with by careful timing, and luck. Had to stop once, and cranked the engine in first gear and if fired up & drove off. Ordered a new cable once at work, turned up on the 11.00 parts run. Fitted it and made it home with the luxury of a working clutch.
Lol! I remember getting stuck at a light with a broken clutch and starting off like you did!
When my family moved into our first house in suburban Toronto in 1955 my parents had a green 1953 Tudor. I don’t know the trim level, but it certainly was not fancy. Our next door neighbors had a matching 1954, but it was brown.
The series 1 of Gaz 21 from then Soviet was developed based this model, the Russian one is smaller and less equipped. It was mid level vehicle for Russia and its socialist brothers. Total over 650k copies were produced before it ended production in 1972.
The GAZ 21 wasn’t “developed based on this model”. The styling was influenced by American cars of the time, especially the Ford, but the GAZ was an original car otherwise.
They certainly had a look at the 1952-54 Fords.
May have also checked out the1955 DeSoto
The GAZ 21 was more an upscale car in USSR and the other socialist countries. More common as car for official use or as taxi.
Mid level were cars like the Moskwitsch or Skoda and Wartburg, too in the other socialist countries.
Mainline was the badge attached to the coupe utility version over here we got Customline 4 door sedans and Ranchwagons only.
That was no doubt a Ford publicity photo. Note how the hub caps are indexed for the “Ford”s on them to read properly.
Ford photo presumably taken 1953; street address is 3640; Ford shot several such photos in the nice/newish neighborhoods of Dearborn. House isn’t *brand* new—there’s some paint wear on the attic dormer—but likely recent. A little time on Zillow & Google Maps might turn up the house in 2022…..
…and here it is:
3640 Eastham Rd. in Dearborn. The house was built in 1949. Image from Google StreetView below, and here’s the link:
Less than a mile from where I lived in the 50’s and 60’s.
It is now called Springwells Park Historic District.
Many Ford executives and engineers lived there given the proximity to Rouge plant and World HQ and engineering bldgs.
I used to bycycle thru there on the way to Greenfield Village and the Rotunda during the summer!
Eric703, thanks HUGELY for getting this across the finish line…for decades I’ve been wondering where all these “neighborhood” Ford photos were being shot, and now I know about at least a couple. Hooray!
My late buddy Bobby Odell came back from Korea in 1954 and spent his muster pay on a brand new 1954 Ford Mainline two door sedan, 6 cylinder three speed, no radio, I bet it didn’t even have a heater .
He got married and took his new bride across America to Niagara Falls from Los Angeles .
He wanted it to be a fast trip so they took his 1937 Buick four door, the new bride wasn’t amused, no problems on the trip .
Freewheeling was a big thing in the 1930’s for a short while, then folks discovered you needed to lock it out to get any engine barking on descending hills..
Many (? most ?) of us geezers learned to drive on older wide ratio three speed trannies so clutch less shifting wasn’t all that difficult .
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