My Vintage Car Aquisition Odyssey

Discussion in 'The Display Case' started by Mr. 'H', Jun 8, 2006.

  1. The Reno Kid

    The Reno Kid A-List Customer

    Messages:
    360
    Location:
    Back in the Biggest Little City
    That is a very sweet car. You might want to check out this web site: http://www.harwoodperformance.bizland.com/1941buick/ He's been restoring a '41 Buick for several years. Your car clearly doesn't need restoration but you'll learn a lot about it from this site.
     
  2. fortworthgal

    fortworthgal Call Me a Cab

    Messages:
    2,646
    Location:
    Panther City
    What a fabulous car!!!! I can't believe it is all original, I have never - and I mean never - seen an original car that clean and well-kept. Truly amazing!
     
  3. Pilgrim

    Pilgrim One Too Many

    Messages:
    1,717
    Location:
    Fort Collins, CO
    Interesting - not sure whether those are technically "running boards" (usually external to the vehicle) or wide doorsills. But the car looks more sleek without the external boards.
     
  4. Wild Root

    Wild Root Gone Home

    Messages:
    5,532
    Location:
    Monrovia California.
    My ‘46 have those... they were a covered running board if you will, and most cars in '41 still had the outside running boards. It was just a streamlined design that was used on the expensive autos of the early 40's and by '42, all exterior running boards were gone in the US.

    =WR=
     
  5. Mr. 'H'

    Mr. 'H' Call Me a Cab

    Messages:
    2,110
    Location:
    Dublin, Ireland, Ireland
    Wow, thank you so much for those kind words.

    It's in transit this week, so it doesn't feel as if it's quite "there" yeat if you know what I mean.

    You know, Ireland is going through a boom for the last few years. I heard a statistic renently, that there were more new Mercedes car per head in Dublin, Ireland, tan in Munich, Germany. And they're made there!

    People spend a fortune on cars here in Ireland. The majority is on tax. I'll give you an arbitrary example: You can buy a new Chrysler in US from $25k (http://www.chrysler.com/300/). The SAME car here in Ireland would be a whopping €58,500 (http://www.chrysler.ie/contentv3/index.cfm?fuseaction=page&pageID=7409&parentID=7388). That's euros! That's $75,000!! Just google the figures and you'll get the conversion.

    Anyway, to make a long story short, I don't have a new car, I have a a 1995 Merc. Instead of me going out and spending my money on a mediocre modern car I decided to spend it on this Buick.

    In the States you might think that this Buick is very expensive because all your cars are so much less expensive than over here....

    Anyway, I am delighted to be getting it, and I really appreciate all the feedback from you guys. Remember, the FL is where it all started for me... and that's on the record....

    :) :) :)
     
  6. Mr. 'H'

    Mr. 'H' Call Me a Cab

    Messages:
    2,110
    Location:
    Dublin, Ireland, Ireland
    No, once it's over 30 years of age, its exempt.

    It's really funny....

    When I was 20 this car was just waiting for me....

    When I was 5 this car was just waiting for me....

    All my life this car has been been "alive".

    Whoa!

    :eusa_doh:
     
  7. Mr. 'H'

    Mr. 'H' Call Me a Cab

    Messages:
    2,110
    Location:
    Dublin, Ireland, Ireland
    Thank you I did check this out and it's a very interesting read.

    It made me very aware about getting a car that was all there, wth no rust and completely OK.

    :)
     
  8. Mr. 'H'

    Mr. 'H' Call Me a Cab

    Messages:
    2,110
    Location:
    Dublin, Ireland, Ireland
    Thank you so much you know that means a lot coming from you Mr. Root.

    I soooo had the bug after riding in Jenny. Just knew I had to get me one after that trip!

    :eusa_clap
     
  9. Mr. 'H'

    Mr. 'H' Call Me a Cab

    Messages:
    2,110
    Location:
    Dublin, Ireland, Ireland
    Very well spotted, my friend.

    For further info on this, search for the thread I started a while back on these stickers.
     
  10. Clyde R.

    Clyde R. One of the Regulars

    Messages:
    164
    Location:
    USA
    Beautiful Buick, Mr. 'H' !!

    I also found it interesting that your car came from NC, as that is my home.

    That's a wonderful time capsule, or time machine if you will, and I know it wil provide you with years of pleasure and refined motoring.
    Enjoy :)
     
  11. Mr. 'H'

    Mr. 'H' Call Me a Cab

    Messages:
    2,110
    Location:
    Dublin, Ireland, Ireland
    We had a fantastic time in NC. The hospitality was superb. A lovely place to be in the great US of A!
     
  12. Wild Root

    Wild Root Gone Home

    Messages:
    5,532
    Location:
    Monrovia California.
    Mr. H, never before have I ever seen an all original car as fresh as that! It is truly a rare thing... it's been loved and cared for, for 65 years! What a rare gem you're getting and it even still has an "A" gas ration sicker in the window!!!

    I may be heading to England in the later part of November; I may try and meet up with you for a ride! That would be the berries!!!

    Take care Brian; it couldn't have happened to a nicer guy!

    =WR=
     
  13. Tin Pan Sally

    Tin Pan Sally Registered User

    Messages:
    325
    Location:
    Ahwatukee, Arizona, USA
    It really is rare to see an untouched vehicle of that era. It just makes me so happy to know it is in your hands, Mr & Mrs H.
     
  14. Mr. 'H'

    Mr. 'H' Call Me a Cab

    Messages:
    2,110
    Location:
    Dublin, Ireland, Ireland
    There is a rom and a big welcome here in Dublin if you'd like to stay here or visit. That's great news that you could be coming here.

    Wrap up well, though, it gets cold here and in England at that time of year!

    ;)
     
  15. Mr. 'H'

    Mr. 'H' Call Me a Cab

    Messages:
    2,110
    Location:
    Dublin, Ireland, Ireland
    Thank you so much for those kind words.

    :) :) :)
     
  16. Zach R.

    Zach R. Practically Family

    Glad to see you had such a good time in North Carolina, though I think your judgement at the time was compromised by euphoric glee. :p

    Where exactly is his shop at?
     
  17. Story

    Story I'll Lock Up

    Messages:
    4,057
    Location:
    Home
    "H",
    Well done!

    I looked up Lewis Jenkins and found the following, which may be of interest -


    LEWIS JENKINS
    —THE MAN AND HIS CARS

    Members of the Cadillac-LaSalle Club are proud to present this video that carries outstanding comments and visuals on one man’s unique collect of about 80 Cadillacs and Buicks. The video is a result of a tour taken a few years ago by Cadillac collectors in the Carolina Region. They saw the worth in preserving the recollections and commentary of Lewis Jenkins.

    Charles Craig is host, and after an interview with Mr. Jenkins, the video camera follows them on a walking tour with insightful comments. For Jenkins, old cars have been “a love and a passion.” It shows. Many of the cars carried prestigious badges as winners at notable shows. I enjoyed the 1928 Buick roadster, Series 40, once owned by Sam Goldwin of MGM. Then there was the 1931 Buick Series 60 rumble seat roadster, which drew some good comments from Jenkins. The provenance of the 1939 Buick convertible coupe was the most spectacular due to its brush with Pearl Harbor on that fateful bombing of Dec. 7, 1941.

    Then came the Cadillacs, well represented from the 1940s on up, with good details and superb lighting making for delightful on-screen viewing. Overall, here is a tape with 58 minutes of high level enjoyment for Buick and Cadillac lovers.

    For price and availability, contact: William Edmunds, 4114 Kestrel Court, Lenoir, NC 28645.




    July 9, 2001
    Pearl Harbor 'survivor' restored to pre-war glory
    By KATE GIBSON
    Martinsville Bulletin Intern

    A.C. Wilson has a piece of American history in his garage: a 1939 Series 40 Buick Special convertible which was parked at the Pearl Harbor dock during the Japanese attack on Dec 7, 1941.

    "There was destruction all around it, but somehow the car came out of the attack undamaged. It's a miracle that the car survived," said Wilson, of Martinsville.

    The car's original owner, Dee Venter, was a naval officer stationed at Pearl Harbor in 1941. When the Japanese attack began on Dec 7, Venter was aboard the USS Pensacola, which had left Hawaii six days before the bombing.

    "They (military officials) thought things were going pretty badly in the Pacific, so the ship steamed out of Hawaii to get out of danger. There had been a lot of reports that the Japanese were up to something and the U.S. military was beginning to think they didn't want all their ships in one place," Wilson said.

    Though Venter was out of danger during the bombing, his Buick convertible still was parked on the dock. After the attack, the USS Pensacola returned to Pearl Harbor, and Venter was eager to see if his car had survived the two-hour onslaught.

    "He said that was the only thing he could think about when they were steaming back in (to Pearl Harbor) - did his new Buick get damaged," Wilson said.

    Remarkably, the car was unscathed. After that, Venter decided that his car would be safer in the hands of Mary Bullard, the wife of his shipmate George Bullard and a cousin of A.C. Wilson.

    "He could no longer use the car because he was at sea all the time, and he knew that if he left it on the dock, something would happen to it sooner or later," Mary Bullard said.

    George Bullard and Venter, both naval officers, went to war in early 1941 and did not return until 1945. During the war, Mary Bullard used the car in her regular transportation, driving it to and from her job with Army intelligence in Hawaii. In 1942 when she returned to her family's home, she shipped the car from Hawaii to San Francisco and then drove it from California to Virginia.

    "To us, it was only transportation," Mary Bullard said. "It was the only car we had for some time and we drove it until it literally fell apart."

    Both Venter and George Bullard survived the war, but Venter never reclaimed the vehicle. "He was in one part of the country and the Bullards were in another, so it (a meeting) never worked out," Wilson said.

    George Bullard remained in the military until his death in 1958, and his family continued to use the Buick for daily transportation.

    "This car has hauled (the Bullards') four children around and made grocery store runs, school runs, and trips up and down the East Coast. It was a real workhorse," Wilson said.

    In the late 1950s, however, the car "wore out" - the gear shift stopped working and the car was deemed unusable. It was retired to a barn on the Bullards' property near Claytor Lake in Radford. For 25 years, the car sat in that barn.

    It was not forgotten, however.

    "My uncle, Bob Harvey (a relative of Mary Bullard), loved the history of this car and in his later life, we would go every summer at least once to the farm on Claytor Lake to see this car. He thought one day I might be interested in having it restored, and he was right," Wilson said.

    In the mid-1970s, Mary Bullard sold the car to Wilson. Despite his continuing interest, Wilson waited several years before having the car restored.

    "My wife urged me for years to go ahead and get the car fixed. She told me, 'we're not getting any younger and if you're ever going to do this, you need to do it now.' And she was right. Everyone involved was getting older - Mr. Venter, Mary Bullard, everyone," Wilson said.

    Finally, he took the car to Jenkins Restoration and Interiors in North Wilksboro, N.C., and placed it in the care of Lewis Jenkins.

    "When it came to me, the car was in sad condition. I knew it would be a long road to restore it,"Jenkins said.

    Jenkins first took the car's body off the frame. He rebuilt the engine, transmission, starter, radiator, exhaust system, brakes, and cooling system. He sandblasted the frame, and replated or replaced all the chrome on the car. He replaced the glass in the windows and installed a re-made instrument panel. He painted the car to match its original color, "Lancaster gray."

    After all that work, Wilson says the car is now "a real sharp looker," though he declined to give the cost of achieving that look.

    The car is made of heavy gauge steel. It has red wheels and a red leather interior, with a convertible top made of tan haarts cloth. The car's backseat is equipped with two small "opera seats" instead of the more common rumble seats.

    With 107 horsepower, it can easily sustain speeds of around 80 miles per hour and can go from 10 to 60 mph in 18.2 seconds. The car's gearshift is mounted on the steering column, a new innovation for Buick at the time, and the vehicle has a "waterfall grille." The car also has three brightness levels on its headlights - high beams, low beams and passing beams.

    Wilson has added to the car's historical appeal by furnishing it with memorabilia. There is a World War II ration sticker on the windshield, a 1939 Buick owner's manual in the glove compartment and a 1941 Hawaii license plate on the back bumper. Wilson still is searching, however, for a World War II Navy commander's hat to put on the passenger's seat.

    "I never dreamed that it would be useful or interesting to anyone - I was amazed to see it in this condition," Bullard said. "I always say that now the Buick is our one claim to fame," she added with a laugh.

    Venter saw the car twice before his death in 1997. "He was thrilled," Wilson said. "The first time he saw it, he didn't stop smiling for hours."

    And those outside Wilson's family and friends have recognized the car's value as well. The car has won first prizes in both the junior and senior level competitions of the Buick Club as well as the Antique Cars of America Club.

    Wilson has been asked to drive the convertible in several parades, and Buick Magazine plans to write an article about its history.

    "We'd like to go to Hawaii for the 60th anniversary of Pearl Harbor, but we're not sure that's going to work out. ... We could ship it back over there, and fly over there (ourselves). But that's a little bit pie-in-the-sky," he said.

    Wilson said his own interest in the car is a symptom of what he calls "car fever." In addition to this 1939 convertible, his auto collection also includes Buicks built in 1940, 1951, 1952, 1955, 1958 and 1963.

    "Everybody around town has an old Buick of mine in a garage," Wilson said with a smile.
     
  18. Etienne

    Etienne A-List Customer

    Messages:
    473
    Location:
    Northern California
    Exceptional in every respect, Mr. H., and it sounds like it has gone to an exceptional couple, too! I raise my glass in a toast to your fine taste, perseverance, and tremendous good fortune!
     
  19. Mr. 'H'

    Mr. 'H' Call Me a Cab

    Messages:
    2,110
    Location:
    Dublin, Ireland, Ireland
    Wow Story,

    That's fantastic information.

    I will try and get me a copy of this tape, as I am sure that my car will be featured in the tour of his museum.

    I was IN Glenn Miller's 1941 Caddilac convertible. It's an amazing car, midnight blue on the outside, and red leather on the inside. I have photos, I'll post them as soon as I can.

    I was also IN the car that was AT Pearl Harbor at the time of the Attack. Not as nice as my '41 though!

    This gentleman had an amazing story to tell.

    Zach, he's in North Wilkesboro, NC. About 90 miles due north of Charlotte, on up past Statesville.

    What a great trip, I'll post some more pics soon!

    :) :) :)
     

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