I'm writing to you, as I do not know who else to tell this story to, and I want to tell it, while I'm still able to do so.
I have worked the most of my life in the motorcycle business, and any remaining time in the automobile business. I am now 65 years old and have always lived in the metropolitan area to the north of NYC.
In spring of 1968 I saw a ad in the local newspaper for a "1961 Chrysler 300-G white convertible, cracked block $300.00"
I knew very little about these cars, but from reading Tom McCahill's stories in hand-me-down issues of Mechanics Illustrated, I knew these cars had two four barrel carbs, and for a big cars they were hotter than a "two dollar pistol".
Before calling about this 300-G I knew of the availability of a mid-60's 383 with an attached Torqueflite, for $150.00....a fair deal, but in that day it was not unusual...I figured if this 413 was beyond repair, I'd put the 383 in, and have a cool looking drop-top for the summer.
I called, and the car was still available, and only five or so miles away. I got my money and five gallons of water and went to look. The car needed a cleaning and paint compounding (interesting how cars aged so much more quickly then), the owner was a pleasant man and was straight-up about the car. I bought it , checked the vital fluids, topped off the water and drove it to my friends gas station. We all looked the car over, marveling about the swing out seats, and those two fours on the long tube manifolds. Up on the lift it went to see the cracked block....what we saw was missing freeze-out plugs. After measuring them, we ordered them from the local parts house, installed, filled it with water and waited. As it warmed up, there were no apparent leaks, so we pressure tested it, and proving that "clean living pays off" (hardly the case for me) there we NO leaks at all, and that big old 413 was running as sweet as could be.
Bias ply tires were still the norm back then, so needless to say, this car could be a hand-full. I also found out that I could smoke the tires as long as I cared to keep my foot into it. This was bad news for the car, as I was a user AND abuser of machinery.
That summer and fall, the top was down 90% of the time, and I changed many a drivers opinion just how fast that big Mopar was.
In retrospect, there are only two vehicles that I have owned that I regret having sold. Out of about a combined total of about 50 cars and motorcycles only that 300 G and a 1967 BMW R-60/2 motorcycle are all that I regret not keeping, and wish I could have back.
Thank you for reading this, and letting me tell my 300G story, that was filled with fun, and regret.