Steve Drale's 1958 Cadillac

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A photo of the Cadillac from the movie Ocean's Eleven. Frank Sinatra owned the car at the time. Photo courtesy of Internet Movie Car Database.
An early photo of Steve with the Brougham. This photo was taken after it had been painted at Carl Burns' shop. Photo courtesy of Joe Hurst.
Photo courtesy of Joe Hurst.
Photo courtesy of Joe Hurst.
These photos of Steve's Brougham hung in Larry Watson's Personal Museum. They were taken at Larry Watson's Lakewood shop, and they show the car as it appeared after Watson had painted the light purple color on the sides. Photo by Dennis McKee.
Photo by Larry Watson.
Photo by Larry Watson.
Photo by Larry Watson.
Photo by Jeff Cohen, courtesy of Howard Gribble.[1]
The Cadillac was delivered with factory air condition. The wheels in this photo are the Chrome Appliance Plating slot wheels that Steve Drale put on it in the mid 1960s. Photo by Jeff Cohen, courtesy of Howard Gribble.[1]
Photo by Jeff Cohen, courtesy of Howard Gribble.[1]
Photo by Jeff Cohen, courtesy of Howard Gribble.[1]
Photo by Jeff Cohen, courtesy of Howard Gribble.[1]

1958 Cadillac Brougham originally owned by Frank Sinatra.


Ocean's Eleven

Frank's car was delivered with factory air bag suspension. While Frank owned the car, it appeared in the movie Ocean's Eleven from 1960. The car can be seen in the scene were Frank drunkenly stumbles out of the casino and falls on the hood of his car. Frank sold the Brougham to a Venezuelan fighter, who later sold it to a bar owner on Pier Avenue in Hermosa Beach.[2]


Steve Drale

Steve Drale of Torrance, California bought the Cadillac from the bar owner in late 1964. When Steve bought the car it had a chipping candy gold paintjob and the grille was broken or missing. Steve had heard that the grille out of Larry Watson's 1957 Cadillac Brougham was still laying around at Bill DeCarr's Body Shop, so he went over with Dennis McKee to Bellflower to check it out. The grille was up in the rafters covered in sanding dust, and Steve bought it for about $80 or $100. At the time, Steve, Dennis and Joe Hurst were working for Carl Burns, a custom painter on Hawthorn Blvd known as Mr B. They stripped all of the paint off Steve's Cadillac and Joe Hurst's 1961 Buick in Carl's shop. Their plan was to have both cars ready for the 1963 Tridents Rod Custom Autorama at the LA Sports Arena. Joe's Buick was painted in a Blue Indigo Metalflake, and the Brougham was painted in a Candy Ink. Not being able to complete Steve's Cadillac for the opening day, the guys put on a show/display on how to assemble a custom car in the middle of the big show.[2] In 2016 Joe Hurst told Kustomrama that he recalls Mr B rubbing and buffing the car out at the show.[3]

Borrowed Wheels

Steve originally fit the Cad with a set of Chrome Appliance Plating slot wheels that he borrowed from Joe Hurst. The car could also be seen rolling on real Buick Skylark Wire Wheels borrowed from his friend Steve Peterson. Drale and Peterson were according to Dennis McKee always changing wheels back and forth for car shows.


Please Leave

Back in the days, a lot of Hollywood stars had 1957 - 1958 Cadillac Broughams. They had their own club, and held club meetings. Steve decided to take his Cadillac to one of these club meetings. When he arrived, and the club members saw what he had done to his Brougham, they asked him to please leave. Dennis McKee was not there, but he has heard that Jimmy Stuart was amongst the stars that attended the meeting that day.[2]


Touch Ups by Larry Watson

After a while Steve scratched the side of the car, and as Mr B was out of business, he took the Brougham to Larry Watson at Watson's House of Style. Watson fixed the paint by fading in a lighter purple color on the sides of the car. About a year later Steve took the car apart to redo it. He lost interest in the old Cadillac and sold it to Delton Johnson.[2]


Jeff Cohen

Some time after 1969, Jeff Cohen bought the Brougham from Delton Johnson.[4] He traded the car for a Harley chopper. Joe Hurst recalled that Delton had bead blasted the car; "I was blown away when I heard about it, because I understood the damage it would do." The car was still in pieces when Jeff got it, so he put it back together again. Jeff eventually sold the car to an unknown buyer.[3]


References



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