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A.D.'s Flying Circus

Here is the top 10 laws for backyard mechanics.

My Favorite Links

Desert Valley Auto Parts
Step-down technical help.
Hudson Essex Terraplane Club
Wizzy's Collector Car Parts
The Web Surfers Guide to Hudson
More Hudson Stuff -My own Hudson project
For all your inline engine needs.
Gilly's Auto Wreakers
Chicago Milwaukee Chapter HET
MUST SEE- Hartungs Auto Museaum
Junkyards of North Georgia.

Hello web surfers, the car you see at the top of the page is my very own 1951 Hudson Pacemaker Custom Club Coup (model 4A 1001. The condition you see it in is how it was when I got it, it is now under restoration. This car is my 2nd car and my first restoration, it has a 232cid straight 6 with a 1 bbl carb and a 6V system, the transmission is a 3 spd. manual (3 on the tree). I was looking for a car to restore and was after a 47' Cadillac or Chevy Fleetline and stumbled across the Hudson and fell in love with it, it was unique to say the least and then I hit the library to learn all I could about Hudson and could only find 2 books that I read cover to cover ("The History of Hudson" & "Hudson :the Post-War Years")the more I read about the cars and the company the more I became a Hudson maniac and I knew I had something very special and ahead of it's time. The quality and craftsmanship, tradition, and innovations of Hudson were unserpassed in the auto world. Next I went looking on the web for anyone who could tell me about Hudson's and if there were any clubs and that's when I stumbled upon the Hudson Essex Terraplane Club. Now my first car is a 1978 T-bird and I had already joined the T-bird Club and found it great to be a member of the group, and feel the pride of rollin' with other fine rides, but when I joined the HET Club, they made me feel like family, and gave me the support and encouraged my enthusiasm and have been always there to help. Of all the cars clubs I've had contact with, HUDSON PEOPLE ARE THE GREATEST!! I'm not even exaggerating either, for a group that's maintaining the tradition of a company who's name has been out of the limelight for almost 50' years, their love for the cars that Hudson built is not in the least diminished and moral is high as ever. But don't take my word for it, check out the HET link and for some history, check out the "Web Surfers Guide to Hudson" - A.D.

The wide and wonderful world of Hudson!!!!!

What's So Special About a Hudson Pacemaker ?(revised)

A Pacemaker is not the thing that keeps Grandpa's ticker going, it's the name of a Hudson model. "Pacemaker" is the word that used to describe the "Pace-car" which is the car used to literally set the pace of other race cars at the beginning of a race. Many times in big event races like the Indy 500, auto manufactures would try to get their cars designated "Pacemakers" at the begining of the race as a promotional tool to sell that model. In some cases the car would be a special edition model to attract buyers to the showroom.

Hudson first used the Pacemaker name in 1932 in advertising to sell its low end model Basically, the theme being that their low-end model set the pace for the rest of Hudsons' model lines in styling, features, and quality. Pacemakers were plain inside and out with less trim and appointments. This remained the case until the Pacemaker name ceased to be used in 1952. It was meant to be a basic, more affordable Hudson for those who wanted Hudson quality but in a more compact package and also to expand Hudsons' marketable price range.

The '39 Pacemaker model was power by Hudsons' own "Splasher" 6 cyl engine. 1939 Was the first year Pacemaker was a model name instead of just an advertsing designation. It is thought that the '39 Pacemaker was a filler model for that year due to the fact that Hudson had dropped its popular Terraplane line, and thereafter only carried models under the "Hudson" nameplate.

Then Hudson did not carry the nameplate for 1940, but resurrected it later in 1950 in "Step-down" form with its own distinct engine: the rugged little "Pacemaker 6cyl. Power Dome" of 232c.i.d. This model came with a standard 3 speed manual transmission with overdrive as an option. It had a wheel base some 6 inches shorter than Hudsons' senior lines. However this did not mean that passenger space was less than any other Hudson because the length was taken off from the front of the car, whereas the passenger area was exactly the same as all similar body styles of "Step-downs". Many buyers liked this because with a shorter hood, there was increased forward visability. Many owners say that Pacemakers handel better with a shorter W.B., and also comment that they are easier to park than full sized Hudsons, even that they look better than full sized Hudsons. Some trace the Pacemakers family tree to the Essex, a Hudson nameplate meant to diversify the product line and give the company broader market appeal. The Essex was designed as a low priced closed-bodied car of high quality and low-cost. As a company, Hudson had always tried to offer the public a chance to buy their cars at a reasonable price. Therefore the Pacemaker was an obvious evolution of that philosophy.

As with all lower end cars, Pacemakers were driven hard by their owners, but they have had remarkable survivability. Out of todays surviving "Step-downs", There are quite a few Pacemakers left. They may not have had the prestige of Hudsons' Hornet or Commadore lines, but they they were every bit as well made. In 1952 the Pacemaker name was discontinued in favor of the "Wasp" name, which drew a kinship to the "Hornet" name, most likely as a marketing ploy. While the Wasp was in actual fact a Pacemaker available with the same 232cid engine. It implied a sportier image to go along with the Hornets' successes in Stock Car racing. More than likely, it was also an attempt to boost declining sales of the quickly aging (though still innovative) "Step-down" design.

Today, Pacemaker owners still can use their car as a daily driver. They are easily maintained and parts are not to difficult to obtain. They also somehow put the driver at ease with their simplicity. Of course, I'm a bit biased. -------- A.D.


1951 Hudson Owners Report --- see what people thought of Hudson's in 1951 ---from Popular Mechanics.

'50 Pacemaker Brougham 2dr.

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this page was last updated 04/4/99