RARE FINDS Duster 340 parked since 1987
Danny Ravas knew about this Plymouth Duster, a 340 with a four-speed, 32 years ago. “It was a block away from my mother’s, and I spotted it outside,” he says. A Mopar enthusiast from way back, Danny inquired about buying the pint-size Plymouth muscle car, which, in 1985, would have been just 13 years old.
Danny kept after the owner on and off through the years, but the answer was always no. He was building up a collection of Mopar muscle, and this Duster was one of his first acquisitions. “He had hopes of restoring it someday,” Danny says.
A few months ago Danny got a call from a friend, Joel, in Atlanta. Joel had just purchased a Superbird from Frank, the owner of the Duster. There was a problem. The carport was in the way of the Superbird’s exit. Danny says that various cars “had sat in the garage so long they couldn’t get the Superbird out without moving the carport.”
Danny is a carpenter by trade. Joel wanted to know if Danny and his crew, busy building a pool house, could spare a few hours to move the old carport. Danny was more than willing to help a friend. He and Joel had both grown up in Upstate New York. Of course, going by Frank’s house to do this favor would also give Danny another chance to ask about the Duster 340.
“When we went to pick the Superbird up, I go, ‘Why don’t you just let that thing go?’ He says, ‘OK, make me an offer.’”
The conversation picked up where it left off the last time they talked. Danny remembers the conversation went like this:
Frank said, “Let’s strike a deal on that Duster.”
Danny said, “When you get realistic with your price. Twelve or 15? I could get one for 17 totally done.” He showed Frank a picture of one for 17 totally done and said, “Listen, at 15 I’d have to put 15 in it to make it look like this.” He pointed to the picture. “I’m not trying to spend 30 to get something I can get for 17.”
Frank replied, ‘How about five
“He had hopes of restoring it
or six grand? You bugged me enough. You bugged me for 30 years.”
“How about five?”
“No, how about six?”
“Why did you mention five?”
The deal was done. Danny was very pleased at six grand. He gave Frank $4,500 and paid the rest a week later when Frank dug up the title.
Danny knows he got a good deal. The Duster still wears its original Rallye Red paint. Originally a four-speed, the Duster had been fitted long ago with an automatic for the track, along with a set of 4.88 gears. Rustwise, the body is “rock solid,” except for a “little bit” of oxidation on the tail panel.
n Danny Ravas got out his smartphone and made sure to snap photos of the car as he found it. This is important. The 340 Duster had been stored since 1987 and had become a shelf for garage items.
n The Rallye Red paint and black stripes are factory original. This car has not been repainted, which is rare.
n The interior was in excellent condition and features a bench seat plus some owner-added gauges under the instrument panel. The odometer read 35,659.
n The vinyl upholstery isn’t cracked or ripped. It looks nearly mint after 46 years.