Just about any day is a good day to go check out special interest cars, restored antiques, muscle cars, hot rods etc. But in the Northwest January often tends to be a little wet and cold and most of those types of cars are snuggled in their respective garages away from that bad weather and out of site.
There are also a number of us old timers that are, what is referred to as, “Snowbirds.” During the winter months up north the Snowbirds head south to warmer climes, often Arizona. January in Arizona is just about perfect with regard to the weather. Usually in the 60’s or 70’s with warm sunshine and blue skies, Arizona offers us a great place to go thaw out, as it were.
January in Arizona has become a destination for car nuts too. I don’t really know what started it all but my guess is Barrett Jackson created that gravitational pull that draws car guys and gals in from all over the world. And, as it turns out 5 other auction companies hold their own auctions in the Phoenix area in January as well. Barrett Jackson is of course televised, semi-live and I’m certain a lot of you watched the coverage on Velocity and The History Channel this year. I usually watch some of it myself. This year I talked myself into flying to Phoenix to “cover” the auction scene in person so I could get first hand exposure to what appears on television to be the best and largest car show ever. It didn’t disappoint either.
Barrett Jackson has a reputation of only selling the best of the best. This year, long time collector, Ron Pratt was essentially liquidating his “best of the best” collection, many of which were purchased over the years at previous Barrett Jackson Auctions, as we have witnessed if we watched during those years. Ron’s collection included many ‘one only’ cars, trucks etc. that were purchased for millions and as you probably already know sold for millions this January. He also had an extensive collection of “Automobilia,” like dealership signs, old gas pumps etc. all in as new condition. The auction was attended by many collectors that jumped at the chance to get some of that memorabilia and totals exceeding 6.5 million dollars’ worth changed hands, not all of it was Mr. Pratt’s, but you get the idea. I was completely intimidated by the bids I witnessed when those collectables were crossing the block. Signs selling for twice as much as I paid for my first house and they weren’t even big signs. This auction was extended five days to accommodate the Pratt Collection. 98% of the cars and memorabilia crossed the block at NO reserve and this year’s sales set a record at $130+ million in sales for Barrett Jackson alone. See what I mean about intimidation? That’s an amazing amount of money! See their website barrett-jackson.com to learn more.
Locally, Mark Young’s, Northwest House of Hardtops, who has a reputation for only selling “the best of the best” Muscle cars and Corvettes, took some fabulous cars to Scottsdale for the Barrett Jackson Auction. Most ran through at “no reserve.” When Mark was telling me about the cars he was taking he mentioned the “no reserve” part. That raised my eyebrows and I emphasized that that was pretty brave but they all sold through but one, the “Bunkie Knudsen,” 1963 Corvette, that did have a reserve, which wasn’t met. The rest drew respectable prices because of his rep and Barrett Jackson’s rep, everybody seems assured that these cars were in fact nearly perfect and worth the price. Mark also bought some cars there and when we were talking about his cars he mentioned that “… if you stand around long enough you’re bound to find a ‘sleeper,’ you just hope it isn’t one of yours.” Meaning of course that there are deals to be had even at Barrett Jackson. One things for sure, with 1620 plus cars and trucks, it’s probably the biggest car show in the world and the majority of them are beautifully restored or built and in nearly perfect condition. nwhouseofhardtops.com
Russo and Steele were also in Scottsdale. They offered 628 cars for sale, sold 65% of them for a total sell through of nearly $19 million. The highest selling car was a 1968 L88 Corvette Convertible which sold for $687,500.00. The least expensive car sold for $4675.00, it was a 1978 Triumph Spitfire 1500 Convertible.
We looked at every car they were offering and we were impressed with the overall level of quality at the Russo & Steele auction. My observation of their people working on the block was very favorable. They were very good at what they do. I’d recommend a Russo & Steele auction to anyone searching for a collector car. Check out russoandsteele.com for more info.
I’d bet some of you have seen Gooding and Company Auctions on television. Wayne Carrini with Chasing Classic Cars attends their auctions both as a seller and a buyer. They offer many of the higher end cars that sell in the millions quite often. Their total sales were $51,516,600.00 with the 10% premium included. Many of the 162 “lots” sold were Ferraris’, Porsches’, Alfa Romeos’, Jaguars’, Mercedes-Benzs’, Maseratis’ even Volkswagens. An Aston Martin DB4 Series II, that was a one family owned, left hand drive, unrestored that frankly looked like it had seen better days, and sold for $462,000.00, with the premium. There was one Camaro, two Corvettes, one Mustang, one 1933 Ford Traditional Hot Rod Roadster, one Crown Victoria, and a few other American Marques, but if you were looking for a large variety of American cars you didn’t find it at Gooding & Company. What you did find was some absolutely fabulous European make collector cars. goodingco.com for more info.
RM Auctions, a Canadian Classic/Collectable car auction company was in Phoenix this past January as well. RM Auctions is another company that attracts the million and multimillion dollar cars to its auctions. Their auction in Phoenix 2015 was amazing.
They had 165 “Lots” and all but 13 sold. Some were American Cars but the majority had names like Ferrari, Porsche, Bugatti, Jaguar, Lamborghini, Alfa Romeo, Maserati, Aston Martin, Mercedes, Bentley and more. The numbers were staggering to a poor old retired guy like me. RM apparently doesn’t publish a total sales number for their auctions but judging from the “sold” list I’d say it’s safe to say the number was enormous. Seventeen cars sold in the seven figure range with the top seller being a 1964 Ferrari 250 LM by Scaglietti for $9,625,000.00. That name just sounds expensive doesn’t it? I’d try to add up the totals for you but I don’t have a calculator that goes that high, seriously! There were only 22 cars that sold for under $100,000.00 and some of those not that far under. The least expensive sale was for $16,500.00 of which there were two at that price and one was a motorcycle. RM Auctions sold some fantastic investment quality cars in Arizona 2015. Visit rmauctions.com to learn more.
Silver Auction Company based in Spokane Washington was in town in January too. They too had a significant number of consignments for their auction. They don’t publish a consignment count or sell through count that I could find; however, I tallied the “solds” and “still for sales” and came up with a total of 320 lots with 208 sold for a 65% sell through, ESTIMATED. That seems respectable to me. Their list ranged from collector, special interest cars to modern 2012 models.
From the looks of the pictures of some of the consignments they had some nice looking collector/special interest cars available and judging from the bids many of the bidders agree with me. They don’t appear to publish a sales total list either so I can’t tell you what that number is but most of the sale prices shown were right in line with the car values I’m familiar with. Check out their web site for upcoming auctions. silverauctions.com
Bonham & Butterfield Auction is the last auction I’ll talk about for January 2015. They too were in Scottsdale with a publicized list of 184 lots. The first 100 consisted of memorabilia, art, sculptures, pedal cars and the like. The last 84 lots were cars and trucks with marques from all over the world. Like some of the other auction companies Bonham’s sold cars worth in the multimillions. One Ferrari sold for almost nine and half million with the premium. Those Ferraris really sell for a lot of money. It’s just a coincidence that I’m writing this story on February 18th which happens to be Enzo Ferraris birthday. He was born this day in 1898. Bonham’s website is bonhams.com
If you like cars and nice weather you ought to plan on taking the trip to Phoenix one of these Januarys. In fact, that would be a good bucket lister, don’t you think?
OK What do you get when you Add 56 + 15 + 51 + 55 ???
If you totaled up to 177 you’re in the money . Now the story goes you never and I underline the word never want to get yourself indebted to a little brother who can call-in that high interest debt payment due at any time. The year is 1956 and I was in my 15th year operating a 51 Ford two door sedan dark mint green in color, Cruzing the Gut on old Sprauge Ave. (Hwy #10) in the beautiful Spokane Valley. We used to call it the land of Opportunity. Well the second thing you never want to do is pay that high interest due debt with the keys to your 51 Ford and your Washington State Driver’s License to your little 15 year old brother. (no operators picture required back in 1956) Now I was a cool kid and could pass for sixteen or even seventeen if needed and because I immolated most everything my two older brothers did , I naturally started shaving at around ten. Needless to say by fifteen I already had a pretty good beard coming in and with my five a clock shadow I convinced Richard to pay up his due debt by letting me use his car just one more time and of course I would be more than careful with his 51 baby!!! His baby was running a fantastic flathead with a three pot intake holding three Stromberg 97’s with progressive linkage and dual-point Mallory ignition. That flathead had the coolest most fantastic sounding pipes of any car at the High School and could really get up and burned some rubber. I of course always brought his Baby home with a full tank of petro and even topped off the oil stick when needed. Well back to Cruzing the Gut some how that crazy green 51 Ford 2 dr coupe must have got that new linkage on the gas peddle stuck as before I knew it she was doing 55mph in a 35mph speed trap zone and there sat one of Washington’s finest on a fancy new Motorcycle and of course he had to turn on the red lights and make a big production out of pulling me over. Well remember when I cautioned you not to pay that debt due with that Drivers License etc. etc. etc. now you know why little brother Bob didn’t get a ticket but big brother Richard got burned big time. The year is 1956 at 15 years of age , operating a delicious 51 Ford, doing a moderate 55mph ….OUCH ! I guess the moral of this story is you just don’t let a ten year old kid start shaving that young !!!
The MHRC / The 59th Portland Roadster Show is up to helping kids again. They have 22 beautifully painted custom wagons that are already to be gifted to Children from the Cancer Fighting Hospital Wards around Portland and these custom painted donated wagons are guaranteed to brighten their days. In conjunction with the wagons the 2015 Portland Roadster show will also be auctioning off 13 custom crafted and custom painted Kids Pedal Cars. 100% of the funds raised at the auction will be equally divided to the participating high schools in this year’s program. Over $5200 dollars was raised last year and this year’s program will feature almost twice as many brand new donated customized pedal cars in all shapes and colors. This year’s Portland Roaster Show is March 20-22 at the Portland Ex-Po center.
The Salem auction was not on the scale of the collector car auctions held in Phoenix but it was a great auction just the same. Curt and Susan put together a nice 70 car list of cars and trucks old and newer where a 1912 Buick Touring car was the top seller. Steve Harsch and I attended to cover the auction and ended up buying a Corvette and a Mercedes. That was entirely unintended but the cars represented were good looking cars and the prices were respectable.
The auction brought a 42% sell through which is also respectable. The venue was terrific and packed with many bidders on hand. This was probably owing to the 5000 hits they got on their web site in January alone. petersencollectorcars.com Check it out as you plan for your participation in their next “Local” collector car auction coming up in on July 11th at the Douglas County Fairgrounds in Roseburg, part of the “Graffiti Weekend Event.” These local auctions are just great because they are easy to get too, fun and some great cars cross the block. See you next time.
Well, Russz’s has been advertising in this little publication for almost a year now and he tells me it’s WORKING. I love hearing that. He is growing and making changes as can be seen by the name change. They have expanded the shop space and now they are expanding their services to include restoration work in addition to the upholstery work.
Here are some shots of the recently finished 1965 Dodge A-100 Pickup owned by Art Laws of Sun Valley, Idaho. Russ and company did the interior as well as installed one piece power door glass. The truck looks great too. Look for an upcoming feature on this one in the future. You can see it though, at the upcoming Portland Roadster Show at the EXPO Center March 20-22.
George McKee, a volunteer at the Sabin Schellenberg Center here in the Clackamas, Oregon area truly has a car for all seasons. From his 1927 Chev 2 dr sedan to his 32 Ford Roadster to this beautiful 1940 Master Deluxe Chevy Coupe.
When George first saw this car he knew he had to have it. You see George was born the same year this car was put together back in Michigan and volunteering in the automotive department at the Sabin Center he could envision the young students working on this Master Deluxe Coupe. He could already see this sweet little 40’ Chevy in a bright red finish running a 327 for power and a 350 tranny with a 411 rear-end.
Well, his new ride finally got all he envisioned, plus some, but it took over five years on a total body-off restoration and thousands of hours in auto-shop time to accomplish his goals. This beautiful ride has every power piece of equipment that one can install on a modern day automobile. Power steering, power brakes, power tinted windows, super sound system with a power antenna, custom handmade 18 gallon fuel cell, a delicious show interior including trunk, and an all chrome engine compartment that tops this award winning ride off with style. George has everything except enough parking space for all his custom creations.
So if you’re interested in a 1940 Show Class Master Deluxe Chevy Coupe give George a call at 971-285-7163, you won’t be sorry. She sounds and drives just like she looks: “sweet and neat”. We at R&R NW would like to thank George McKee for all of his years of volunteering at the Sabin-Schellenberg Center helping the young people with their automotive creations.
Well, how exciting. The number of calls, emails, letters and more that we received with regard to the “What’s It,” pictures we published, showed that you readers had some interest in this little “mini feature.”
The December car didn’t get much in terms of any info regarding it, aside from a few comments in passing like, “I think I’ve seen that car, but I can’t remember where.” Or, “That car looks familiar.” Some discussion about it looking like an individually styled “custom” came from many readers but nothing definitive as to what it is, who might have built it, does it still exist or where it might be now.
The little gray “What’s It” in January, however; did indeed spark a lot of interest and “guesses” as to what it might be, including several who believe it is a Crosley Farm-O-Road, a Crofton Bug, a King Midget and one fellow from El Salvador who said it looked like a car built there, not for export, called a “Cherito.” Several individuals said that it was a “Proto-type” utility type vehicle built for a very important and specific use, at the Freightliner factory in Portland back in the 70’s. The body is aluminum, the chassis appears to be a Crosley, but there are no name plates, serial plates etc. to be found on the car that would identify its origin or brand. The lack of any manufacturer IDs and the multiple claims of recognition gives me reason to believe that last identity might be correct.
The Crosley Farm-O-Road was built in the early 50’s. The Crofton Bug was an updated version of the Farm-O-Road re-branded and built by Crofton Marine Engineering from 1959 through 1963. The Crosley engine was built by several manufacturers until sometime in the early 70’s, about the time some say this Proto-type was built by some of the crew at Freightliner. The similarities between the Crosley, the Crofton and this car are obvious but different in that the hood top is flush with the fender tops on the What’s It, but they aren’t on either the Crosley or the Crofton. The top itself doesn’t match anything I’ve found made by either manufacturers, but it does look like a Freightliner top. I’m going to talk with the current owner to see what else he might know about it and I’m going to go a little farther on this “What’s It” by contacting the Crosley Automobile Club to get their input in an effort to definitively identify this unique car. I encourage any of you who might know something about it to contact me too.
That “very important and specific use” mentioned above? The Friday beer run of course. I’ve been told (unconfirmed and unverified) the little car was used for picking up cases of beer at the local convenience store on Fridays. This is just hearsay of course.
Jerome W. “Jerry” Hubert born into this world on December 27, 1923. He turned out to be more than just a Christmas gift to his Dad and Mom and his four siblings back in Amery, Wisconsin.
He has become a gift to every person that loves classic, beautiful creations of automobile wonder. We at R&R Northwest Publications are proud to bring you seven of Jerry’s completed artistic creations with an additional sneak preview update on three more works in progress.
1912 Ford Model “T” Touring
Started 1956 Four Year Restoration
Capacity: 4 Adults, 4 CYL power plant, 20 HP, 2 speed transmission on the floor, 10 gal. gas tank, 30”x 3” T&W up front and 30”x 3 ½” on the rear, Carbide Gas Generator mounted on running board, brass side lamps and tail lights on kerosene oil, Carbide Gas fed brass headlamps, 45 to 50 MPH top speed, deep diamond tucked black leather upholstery, dark blue color with white striping and black fenders. The brass side lamps, brass horn, brass step pads and Cars Top were accessory items back in 1912 and priced accordingly. This award winning Model ”T” has been featured in two movies and on national TV on several occasions. Winner of the prestigious “LaBarre Trophy” and many more.
1911 Ford Model “T” Open Touring
Four to Five Year Restoration
Capacity: 4 Adults, all stock 4 CYL, 20 HP, 2 speed tranny, 30” x 3” Ash Spoke wheels upfront and 30”x 3 ½” on the rear, 45 to 50 MPH, shipped and priced like 1912 with brass radiator and front brass windshield frame with glass, came as standard equipment – all other extra items were priced as accessories. Beautiful bright red color on body with white striping, black hood and black fenders with deep diamond tucked black leather interior. 100% authentically built to detail.
1925 Ford Model “T” Roadster
Four Year Restoration
Capacity: 2 Adults, all stock 4 CYL, 20 HP, 2 speed tranny, 45 to 50 MPH, shipped with same driving features as 1911 and 1912 “T”s, except this one is black on black with no brass accessories added. A beautiful all black leather interior topped off this gorgeous 1925 “T” Roadster. This is another world class award winner, also receiving the ”LaBarre Trophy” for the patience and perfection to detail by Jerry on all of his artistic auto creations.
1930 Ford Model “A” Deluxe Roadster
with Dual Side Mounts
Capacity: 2+2 Adults, All stock 4 CYL for power, 3 speed trans, wide white walls on all four corners plus two more on the fenders with stock yellow wire spokes for fun. This Model “A” Deluxe came complete with everything on it that Ford offered in 1930. Rumble seat, leather carrying case at rear, chrome step pads, etched side wind windows, deluxe roadster top. Beautiful Candy Blue color with white striping and black fenders. A deluxe red leather interior to match the Rumble Seat. Yes, two adults in the cab and two more in the Rumble Seat for a fun time ride, in this another big fantastic show winner.
1906 Cadillac Tulip Touring
7 to 8 Year Restoration
Capacity: 4 Adults, right hand drive horseless carriage. One horizontal cylinder (5” bore 5” Stroke), chain drive, side start crank, 10 HP, 2 speed transmission with reverse, 20 to 25 MPH. Ten gallon gas tank, 30” x 3 ½” tires and wheels all the way around with red painted Ash Spokes, complete with pin striping. An all steel red painted and pinstriped show chassis, Steel hood and fenders and an all wood body.
The only paint color Cadillac used on these fabulous creations was called “Purple Lake.” It was used on the body only with black for the fenders and trim. Again with straight as an arrow accented pin striping. The interior is done in a deep diamond tucked and rolled rich Cordovan Leather to match the body. Brass Carbide Gas side-mount Generator, brass side lamps, brass headlights and a brass driver’s steering light at hand level. Jerry received the Stanley Wanless Award for his attention to detail and perfection at the Concours d’Elegance in Forest Grove, Oregon, in 1995.
Watch for coming issues of R&R as Jerry is about 95% done with a sister car in a 1906 Cadillac Roadster. Another beautiful artistic creation work in progress.
1912 Rambler Touring
6 to 7 Year Restoration
Capacity: 4 to 5 Adults, 4 CYL for power – est. 35 to 40 HP, 2 speed transmission. 12 volt system with magneto, 55 to 60 MPH, rich nickel plated brass headlamps and side lamps, all fed from an on-board Carbide Gas Reservoir. 36”x 4” white pneumatic rubber tires off set the Wood Spoke Artillery Wheels, with an extra spare on the rear. The interior is a black Cordovan deep diamond tucked leather with the deluxe top. This Rambler Touring comes in at over 15’ in length and has room for the Babies Basket in the rear seat area. Rambler was one of the true quality upscale cars of its time. This award winning car was featured in the filming of A&E’s story on “America’s Castles” at the Pittock Mansion here in Portland. This is another one of Jerry’s phenomenal restorations of automotive creative wonderment and another winner at the Concours d’Elegance in Forest Grove a few years back.
1915 Franklin Air Cooled Touring
4 to 5 year Restoration
Capacity: 4 to 5 Adults, 6 CYL, 40 HP, first air cooled engine in production in USA. 12 volt system, with Dynamo Starter, generator with built in compressor for on board use. 34”x 4” pneumatic tires with Ash Wood Spoke Wheels. This 1915 Franklin was truly a futuristic wonder in design and engineering for its time, with its all aluminum body and the designing of the Air Flow System to cool that power plant. The articulate detail to restoration in every part and piece that is used in Jerry’s cars are 100% to the original specs. The color on this unique creation is labeled “Brewster Green” and she is one big long and wide green machine. You probably won’t see another one like this anytime soon. Jerry is working on another 1925 Franklin Roadster featuring a dual cowling. It appears to be about 20’ long and has about an 8’ long hood. A work in progress.
Another work in progress is a 1909 Brush Roadster, a rare car only made from 1907 to 1911, and it features a 1 CYL (4 ½” bore and 5″ stroke) for power with an all wood frame, wooden axle front and rear and wood body with steel fenders.
Jerry relocated here to the Portland area in 1946 after serving honorably in the US Navy during WWII. He perfected his life-long talent of repairing watches and started H&H Jewelers in the Hollywood District. He met and married his wife Gerry in 1949 and together they raised two fantastic children, a daughter, Lynnette and a son, Kim. Jerry and Gerry are proud grandparents of five, two boys and three girls. Together they are very active in their local church, and Jerry who recently celebrated his 91st birthday, is also a charter member of the Horseless Carriage Club of America, and helped start the Portland Chapter back in 1965. Memberships also include the Rose City Model T Club, The Franklin Club, The Model T Ford Club of America and the Portland Swap Meet Committee. We at R&R NW Publications want to thank you Mr. & Mrs. Hubert for caring and sharing your fantastic story and the thousands of hours and over 60 years of Restorations to immaculate detailed perfection on each and every one of your artistic creative automobile wonders.
1963 ½ Ford Galaxie 500 XL
Owned by Bill Stephan’s from Clackamas, Oregon
This low-mileage Galaxie 500 XL looks delicious in its stock Champagne color and features a gorgeous black diamond tucked interior covering those 500 XL Bucket Seats. She sounds as good as it looks, running a 289 cubic inch power plant with super cool pipes. Speaking of cool, she was spotted at the Kool Guys Hot Rod Friday Morning Breakfast at the HANGAR Sports Bar and Grill in Carver. This might be the only year round 52 weekly no-host Rod Run event going on in the Portland area come Rain or Shine. Everyone is welcome to this no entry or registration Cruz-In, just come as you are and bring your rides. Pick up the latest issue of Roddin’& Racin’ Northwest when you’re there and your ride might just be the next “Featured Car of the Month.”
Winter time is a perfect time for a museum trip. In the shadow of the Tacoma Dome, a mere thirty minute drive south of Seattle, lies the LeMay – America’s Car Museum.
If you’re thinking “stodgy”, you probably haven’t been to a museum (any modern museum) in a while. See, they don’t make ‘em like they used to. At some point somebody realized that a bunch of exhibits of anything surrounded by velvet ropes to keep the observer at arm’s length, gets old fast. Hey, if it’s cool we want to get a closer look, right? Anymore, most modern museums encourage you to get closer. In fact, many exhibits these days are actually “hands on.” It’s what they’re calling: interactive. And believe you me, this approach has changed the entire experience. Going to the museum today is much more fun and interesting than it used to be.
The LeMay is a great example of a modern museum having opened in June of 2012. You have four floors to explore with as many as 350 vehicles on display at any given time. There is literally something for everyone in this collection, including the kids. Many of the vehicles belong to the museum but there are also cars on loan for a limited engagement. There are also numerous theme displays like: Masters of Mustang, Legends of Motorsports – The NASCAR Story, Route 66 and the British Invasion. And speaking of hands on, there are even racing simulators and a slot car track! (Extra fee for these)
Cost of admission is $16 for adults with various discounts available depending on your age, whether or not you served in the military, etc. And if you read this paper, you’re very likely to be spending the better part of the day there so it’s worth every penny! Doors are open at 10:00 am and close at 5 pm, seven days a week. For more information: (253) 779-8490.