You are currently browsing the tag archive for the ‘Cuban classic automobiles’ tag.

The parrot on my shoulder has started informing me the market cannot bear much more of these old jalopies, so here’s the last installment for now.  Speaking of jalopies, that’s a word I deliberately chose not to use until now.  Anyone know the origin of this word?

The vehicle below . . . puzzles me in its origins as well.  I’d call it a Cienfuegos rat rod, Cienfuegos being my port of entry, where I took all of the photos in today’s post.   And as to the identification, I’m just guessing, so I might be slightly off on some.

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Here’s the first car I had a chance to look at close up.

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1949 Chevrolet

 

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1956 Chrysler and 1956 Chevrolet

 

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1950 Chevrolet

 

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1951 Ford

 

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1985 Kamaz

 

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1958 Pontiac, and that’s a gas station in the background

 

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1950 Plymouth

 

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1956 Willys

 

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1952 Chevrolet

 

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1952 Buick, with the portholes recently bondo’ed in?

 

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1957 Plymouth Belvedere

 

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1958 Chrysler

 

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1956 Dodge followed by the ubiquitous 1970s Lada

And a personal favorite from my time in Africa . . . any one guess?

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???

And here’s the final shot in the series, the commonplace Chevrolet but with a pearlescent paint job, which doesn’t show that well on this photo.

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Almost all photos by Will Van Dorp, who was auditioning as a car show model above.  Think I have a future?  I saw a very efficient “booth babe” (someone else’s term, not mine) at the NY Boat Show last month;  she had more guys checking out the products at this particular booth than at any other booth.

In contrast to the photos of the cars in Cuba, here are a few from my hunting ground in the Georgia woods.  See them all in the camouflage?

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I saw no Hudsons on the tropical island, although I did some a few Studebakers and even one Corvair.

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And as you’ve seen, Buicks were plentiful, with or without portholes.

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That blue sedan–five photos up–is a Peugeot 404 from about 1970.

And finally . . . jalopy . . . here’s the origin of the word, and here’s that location.

By tomorrow, chugster hopes to dive back into the water and re-emerge as tugster; either that, or he risks getting bit by the parrot who serves as chair of the board.

 

 

 

Chugging right along from yesterday’s post . . . I’m recalling my visits in recent years to a certain junkyard not far from I-75 in Georgia . . . . of course I Today’s post will start out right in front of the office of the captain of the port,

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1957 Ford Fairlane

here’s the view of the port from across the street,

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A recent Hyundai hangs with a 1950s Pontaic, Chevy, and Cadillac.

and there’s a whole lot more to see when I walk down the street.

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1945ish Packard Clipper with great paint and missing trim.

 

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1946 Ford and 1955 Chevrolet

 

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1957 Chevrolet and 1947 Chevrolet with another Hyundai

 

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1958ish Fiat? and 1958 Rambler

 

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Prominent is a 1958 Buick? but also a three-wheeler, some old Chevys and a Mercury.

 

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1949 Dodge

 

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1956 Pontiac

 

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1946 DeSoto

 

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1950 Chevy

And we end today with another shot of the 1957 Ford, next to a 1959 Buick convertible.

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To put these photos into a context, watch a few minutes of this video, showing Havana streets about three generations ago, just to see that it was all the same cars. For what appears to be fairly well documented history, read this article and this one as well.  For a bit more history with vintage air travel posters and maps, click here.

And unless I hear loud boos and hisses about topic, I have one more installment.  Boos and hisses about misidentification–or anything else– as well as questions and up-antes  are entirely welcome.  I was thinking to put some of these together into a 18-month calendar for my brother, who is the REAL car nut in my life, eh?

All photos by Will Van Dorp, except this last one where he plays talent and the driver takes the photo.

Back in 2011 on my way back from my daughter’s wedding in Georgia, I passed through Key West aka the Conch Republic, and while there, of course, I couldn’t help stopping at Fort Jefferson on Dry Tortugas, where here, I wrote about first hearing of “chugs” and seeing one.

Given that and given the fact that in a few days south of the Florida Strait, I saw about one percent of the 60,000 or so vintage US automobiles, many with Soviet pollution-rich but said-to-be economical engines such as Volgas, let me in the spirit of truckster share a few here.   Chug was the sound many of them made, and between the leaded fuel and absence of pollution controls, that chug-chug-chug was palpable.  I’ll identify what I can, but most of my years/makes are guesses.

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1949 Chevrolet

 

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1950 Chevrolet

 

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1940 Chevrolet

 

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1950 Buick with 1956 Buick parked behind it

 

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1951 Willys modified into small bus

 

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1942 Chevrolet

 

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Extra points if you guess this brand of truck.  Answer at end of post.   And note the horse/cart hauling sugar cane.

 

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1951 Buick

And here we are back to the 1949 Chevrolet, with the

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Volga engine, i.e., this is a Cold War hybrid.  Click here for an insightful article which calls Cuba the “Galapagos Islands” of cars. 

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More soon, if you wish, before I get back to tugs and other workboats.

All photos taken by Will Van Dorp, with one at least by his camera.

That red truck pulling the chassis with the Hamburg-Sud container is made by China National Heavy Truck Group.  China also supplies many of the modern buses. 

 

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