THE HEARSE.DE KNOW-HOW PAGE
Here is the collection of useful and useless knowledge concerning
hearses, Cadillacs, cars and other stuff. Please feel free to
send me an email if you
feel that there is something missing, wrong or if you have any other
The modern, politically correct expression
for that wooden box where the corpses are transported. See
the description for coffin below for details.
- Classified ads deciphered:
OK, that is taken from the professionalcar forum (link on the link
page, but it is true and funny at the same time, that is why it is
here. What statements in classified ads really mean with the real meaning
Rough condition- (too bad to lie about)
Some rust- (Some rust holes you can stick your head through... the rest are *big*)
Parts car- (there's a piece of trim is isn't broken, rusted, or missing)
Immaculate- (recently washed)
Concours- (recently waxed)
Engine quiet- (uses 90-weight oil)
Needs engine work- (needs engine)
Needs minor overhaul- (needs total restoration)
Needs major overhaul- (needs to be put out of its misery)
Burns no oil- (it all leaks out)
Rebuilt engine- (Cleaned the spark plugs)
Drive it away- (I live on a hill)
Drive it anywhere- (On the back of a wrecker)
Desirable classic- (No one wants it)
Rare classic- (No one wanted it, even when it was new)
Stored 20 years- (in a farmers field)
Ran when stored- (so did the Titanic, and it has better odds of running now)
Never apart- (Bolts too rounded to loosen)
Solid as a rock- (Rusted solid)
Restored with 0 miles- (Won't start)
Restored with 2 miles- (Won't stay running)
Older restoration- (First owner washed it)
Good investment- (Can't be worth much less)
No time to restore it- (Can't obtain parts)
95% complete- (Other 5% doesn't exist)
Other interests conflict- (Spouse said "Either that #!!@?#*!!! Thing goes or I go!")
The "old" name for that wooden box where the corpses are transported. Nowadays
it is usually replaced by casket, which is the
politically correct expression for the same stuff.
A minor difference might be, that a coffin is usually referred to as the
"classic western style" coffin with the six corners, whereas the casket
is a more simple, rectangular box.
An endloader is a funeral coach where the casket is loaded from the rear
of the car, using the tailgate. The is also a
This is a coach builder from USA. There are actually TWO companies called
Eureka; the original company closed down in 1964; however the name was
bought later (from a company whose name I've forgotten) and new Eureka coaches
have been built since. However the new Eureka has nothing at all to do with the
original company; also people say the quality is no where near the original
- Landau Bar:
A landau bar is the thingamajick you see on the rear panels of most american
hearses. This is pure decoration and does not have any functionality (besides
being subject to vandalism, theft, loss and rust).
You can see an example of such a nice landau bar when you look at the
picture of my Cadillac Hope. The style of the landau bar
itself also helps to identify the coach builder in question.
German hearses rarely have a landau bar; some of the older cars had one, but
usually you will find that the cars have a large rear window, either with etched
glass or some opaque cover behind it.
Jim Lux has even more information: The landau bar is a hold over
from horsedrawn carriage days. A form of carriage with 4 wheels and enclosed
by soft top is called a landau. The top is supported by those landau bars
(which appear to be diagonal struts under compression). It's not clear from
what I found, but it is possible the top folds down, as well.. You might also
be interested to know that the Landau apparently originated in Bavaria...
how's that for a coincidence. More information on Landau Bars can be found
Jim for the information!
American coach manufacturer. M&M was bought by Collins in 1980, the
name lives on, however the quality is said to be significantly less than the
- Politically Correct:
Today everything must be pc, this also covers hearses, coffins and all that stuff.
Old expressions are frowned upon (don't ask me why), so new words with the same
meaning have been invented, that apparently sound less threatening. Calm down,
this tendency has also covered Germany, it is an international phenomenom.
Some examples for old and new, pc expressions are:
Coffin -> Casket
Grave -> Site
Hearse -> Funeral Coach
Mortuary -> Funeral Home
This is a German expression for the rear compartment of a hearse. This is
where the casket will be put. German laws dictate that this compartment must
be hermetically sealed towards the driver compartment (apparently people are
afraid that the caskets leak dangerous fluids or gases). This is one of the
reasons that you will find no sideloaders in Germany.
It must also be sealed against fluids that may leak from a casket.
A sideloader is a hearse where the casket may also be loaded sideways through
the doors, and not only through the tailgate as with the
endloaders. To allow this, sideloaders feature doors,
where the front doors (driver and co-driver) open towards the front of the
car and the rear doors open towards the rear of the car. These doors are also
called suicide doors.
I haven't seen any non-USA sideloaders; if you look closely you will also
notice that there are not many German or other European (British, Italian)
hearses that have four doors (plus tailgate).
- Suicide Doors:
Suicide Doors are doors where the fronts open towards the front of the car
and the rears open towards the rear of the car.
Hendrik contributed the following: Suicide doors have become illegal
in Germany in the early 1960ies. The reason was apparently that the rear doors
could have been pushed open by the wind and thus the passengers risked to
fall out of the car (this was before the introduction of the safety belt).
This would then look more like an accident than a suicide, but still the name
stuck (they are literally called suicide doors in German as well!). This
story was confirmed by Stefan, thanks guys for helping me out here!
Jim Lux tells me that suicide doors also were a feature on the bigger
Lincoln Continental's in the 60's... particularly limousines.
American coach builder.
Back to top