This Swallow Doretti was my first car, bought in 1968 from a person in Berkeley, California, a military serviceman who was being sent overseas to the Vietnam war.
The red car had been modified, but well cared for cosmetically. It still had the original wire wheel option, a luggage rack, but no side curtains. The original grille and bumper had been deleted and the front body had been de-chromed filled etc.
Everything else was original except for the rear end, which had been replaced with a TR3 unit, and because the original traction bars did not exist on the TR3 unit, these had been cut off, with 3-inch stubs protruding from the front attachment points. All of the red interior was original except for the steering wheel. In addition the rear fender wells had been cut and flared to fit big oversize tires in the rear.
I did a complete mechanical and electrical rebuild in 1970. The engine was completely disassembled, blueprinted, balanced and reassembled along with the SU carburetors. The transmission, (with original non synchro 1st gear ) was also rebuilt, so both the engine and tranny are original.
I did this knowing nothing about the Doretti background and history. Nobody I talked to knew anything about the Doretti or its origin. I once met a Englishman working for Apple Computers in 1978 who knew of the Doretti, he told me about the Swallow Coachbuilding Company, but said that one of the original designer/engineer had been killed in a car crash in England while road testing a Doretti???????????
The car went to college with me, and in 1974, upon graduation, was taken apart for a frame-off restoration. Floorboards were rusting thru and needed replacing as well as the steering wheel/turn signals, etc.
Well, the project was never completed, 25 years and 4 children later, we are now living in Texas and thinking of getting back to the restoration. The car has been garaged all this time at my fathers home in California. I have very few pictures, as most of the family pics were destroyed in a basement flood some ten years ago. ...Herb Miranda
Thanks to Herb Miranda for the information.Return to the Index of Cars and Owners on the Swallow Doretti Page.