'51 Hudson Hornet

tony499tony499 Posts: 3Member
Greetings! I am looking to buy a 1951 Hudson Hornet. I know very little about them. What are the usual problems? What should I look for when I go to view the car? Where is the rust typically found? Appreciate in advance all responses! Tony


  • blondwookieblondwookie Posts: 168Member
    My first question for you Tony, is where has the car spent most of it's life? This could help the more knowledgeable folks to answer your rust questions.

    For me, I have a 48 Super Six Club Coupe. My car spent all of it's driving life in Wyoming, and was last registered in 1957 in Wyoming. My car has more natural Wyoming sand blasting than cancer. My car is at the moment, fully disassembled, to be restored. My car has some minor body damage, but not a spot of cancer.

    I'd suggest that you buy that 51 Hornet. You will have a blast driving a classic.

  • tony499tony499 Posts: 3Member
    Hey Wookie, thanks for your response! The car has spent the last 10 years garaged in the northeast. The current owner bought it in Florida. The history after that is unknown except that it had a minor rust issue that has been addressed. It apparently runs well and needs nothing.

    I intend to buy it if it is as good as the owner says it is but I need the help of other club members to let me know what to look for.

    Enjoy your Super Six and thanks again for your help!

  • GlowplugGlowplug Posts: 2,111Expert Adviser
    Where in Florida are you looking at the car? There are multiple knowledgeable hudson people who you might invite to review the vehicle with you?  Good luck
  • ski4life65ski4life65 Posts: 1,086Expert Adviser
    I am sure you should be able to find a Hudson Club member to go look at the car with you. If you can let us know where the car is located, we could probably help you out. (Northeast is a big area....). Also, maybe we already know the seller and the car, and could give some insight.
  • GlowplugGlowplug Posts: 2,111Expert Adviser
    Unlike my friend Don; I miss read your post... he fixed my phupah good luck
  • supercubsupercub Posts: 139Member
    Look for leaks, rust in hard to look in areas, and run it for as long as the owner will tolerate and then check it out really thoroughly again.
  • 7XPacemaker7XPacemaker Posts: 460Senior Contributor
    I (unfortunately) have extensive knowledge on rust out areas. I purchased a car that LOOKED good at first glance. When I got it home, I put a screwdriver through the bottom of the frame rail almost the entire length of each side! The perimeter frame in the rear wheel wells go bad and also the rear in front of the back bumper where the mud and salt sprayed up. you have the obvious floor pan inspections as well. The factory design behind the front wheels was pretty good and didn't seem to have many problems as far as rot on the one that I did.  
  • Jon BJon B Posts: 7,227Administrator
    When buying a StepDown, condition of body is everything; mechanical repair is relatively easy in comparison.  New body panels are few and far between, while engine parts (and even good-running used engines) are still "our there" and are in many cases being reproduced.  If you happen onto a car whose body is straight and un-rusted (especially the rear frame rails, as Pacemaker points out), grab it.  Whether it even has an engine, is beside the point. 

    Once you buy such a car, you needn't worry that the body is fated to rust, because you will garage it (and not drive it on salted roads in the winter).  Sadly, owners of many Hudsons did not take those precautions which is why so many Hudsons went off the road.
  • GlowplugGlowplug Posts: 2,111Expert Adviser
    The purchase of a unibody vehicle involves a knowledge of the bodies original configuration as well as how corrosion manifests itself on that vehicle.  You can view original patent diagrams that show the frame and support metal.  Also multiple articles that show the damaged Stepdown frames and how to repair them. You can go to my website


    And select

    ody work and frame repair
  • tony499tony499 Posts: 3Member
    Thanks all for your advice, very helpful! I am in Florida but the car is in New Hampshire. It won't be available until the end of May. It's a thing of beauty! Hope it works out!
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