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Written by independent automotive journalist David C. Neyens

 

Combining “automobile” and “memorabilia,” automobilia represents one of the widest and most interesting of all collector realms today. A catch-all term for virtually any automobile-related item, automobilia provides an unforgettable glimpse into commercial and industrial history from the dawn of motoring to the present.

Barrett-Jackson’s upcoming Scottsdale auction, scheduled for January 22-30, 2022, promises to deliver one of the finest automobilia selections to ever cross the block. Among the many highlights are collectibles from three noted collections, including the Tom Dellamalva Collection. Other offerings include a wide variety of Coca-Cola and soda collectibles and signs, plus antique showcases, general advertising, railroad memorabilia, and brewery-related items. Western collectibles will also be well represented, including sought-after Textan Saddlery items and examples of the iconic Levi’s brand.

One of today’s hottest automobilia segments comes in the form of vintage neon porcelain signs, with two particularly fabulous early consignments including Lot 9490.4, a stunning 1940s Flying A Service sign. A single-sided porcelain sign with animated neon lettering, it measures a grand seven feet in height with a 24-foot width. Closely approaching factory-fresh condition, it is anticipated to garner bids over six figures.

Another choice example is Lot 9491, a Ford Motor Company Jubilee neon porcelain sign from the landmark 50th Anniversary celebrations of the “Blue Oval” in 1953. Measuring 10 feet tall and over five feet wide, it features a striking multi-color motif and benefits handsomely from a full restoration to as-new condition.

Lot 9470 on the Scottsdale auction docket is yet another wonderful neon porcelain, a museum-quality, single-sided Kelly Tires dealership sign from the 1930s. Featuring Kelly’s “Miss Lotta Miles” character, it is in excellent overall condition and represents one of the most collectible signs of the period. A similar example sold for $150,000 at the Barrett-Jackson 2015 Scottsdale event.

Representing America’s regional oil companies is a phenomenal early-1950s Mustang Oil double-sided porcelain service station sign. Measuring 72 inches in diameter with a wonderful prancing horse logo, it features vibrant colors and presents within its original hanging ring mount. Offered as Lot 9465.2, it is sure to attract bidding as spirited as the company’s mascot.

Everyone loves Disney memorabilia, but actual Disneyland and Disneyworld theme park items are extremely scarce, due to the corporation’s vast mandatory destruction policy after they eventually outlive their usefulness. Thankfully, at least two of these items were spared and they are certain to captivate collectors of the beloved entertainment brand. Among them is Lot 9488.1, a late-1950s/early ’60s Walt Disney-Disneyland coin-operated kiddie ride. Restored to Day One condition, this extremely rare find even plays a Donald Duck recording while the ride is operated.

Another collector-grade Disney item on the Scottsdale auction docket is Lot 9488.2, a now-scarce Disneyland Mold-A-Rama Toy Factory machine. Offered in true museum quality, this mid-1960s Disneyland staple is restored to original, fully functional condition.

Ferrari lovers will appreciate Lot 9465, a highly prized and authentic Ferrari porcelain dealership sign. Retaining its original stainless steel frame and of course featuring Ferrari’s iconic prancing horse motif, it is anticipated to attract equally spirited bidding. Notwithstanding some age- and use-appropriate wear, it looks great and is offered in excellent overall condition.

Gasoline pumps are perennially collectible and come in a wide array of designs with interesting mechanisms and captivating details. Lot 9387 is an exceptionally stylish 1930s-vintage Bennett Model 150 gas pump, sporting a clock-type face and Texaco livery. Benefiting from a high-end restoration comparable to a concours-level automobile restoration, it features hand-painted graphics and beautiful pin stripe accents.

We could continue with all of the automobilia offerings at Scottsdale, but will wrap up this article with Lot 9395, a fabulous early-1930s double-sided tin “bowtie” Chevrolet dealership sign. Featuring all original milk glass letters, it showcases a sign face restored to impeccable standards. An impressive piece, it measures nine feet across and nearly three feet in height, offering the perfect accompaniment to a Chevrolet- or GM-focused automobile collection.

Consistent with Barrett-Jackson tradition, the array of automobilia and

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By: Barrett-Jackson
Title: TIME CAPSULES: Exceptional Automobilia is Coming to Scottsdale
Sourced From: www.barrett-jackson.com/Media/Home/Reader/exceptional-automobilia-is-coming-to-scottsdale-2022/
Published Date: Wed, 22 Dec 2021 15:57:46 +0000

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Exquisite Taste: A classic Moto Guzzi V7 restomod by Unikat Motorworks

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Classic Moto Guzzi V7 restomod by Unikat Motorworks
Restomods by their very nature appear simpler than fully customized motorcycles, but they’re usually harder to get right. Customization leaves you free to change whatever you want, but a restomod demands good judgement and even better taste. You need to know when to zig and when to zag—treating the original bike with respect while making just the right number of changes.

It’s a dark art that Unikat Motorworks has mastered. Based in Wroclaw, Poland, the custom workshop’s latest project is a classic Moto Guzzi V7 that’s been nipped and tucked to great effect.

Classic Moto Guzzi V7 restomod by Unikat Motorworks

The job came from a returning client, who had previously asked Unikat to build a Godden GR500 speedway bike as a gift for his wife. This time around, he decided to treat himself with a restrained and stylish restomod. Picking the 1969 Moto Guzzi V7 Special as the donor was an easy choice since the bike and owner share a birth year.

Unikat imported the V7 in classic police bike trim from Italy, complete with its cop-spec fairing and panniers. It looked to be in good condition—although the team soon realized just how much work would be needed to make it mechanically sound.

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By: Wesley Reyneke
Title: Exquisite Taste: A classic Moto Guzzi V7 restomod by Unikat Motorworks
Sourced From: www.bikeexif.com/classic-moto-guzzi-v7-restomod
Published Date: Sat, 02 Mar 2024 17:01:30 +0000

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A SHIRT IS BORN: How the Exclusive 2024 FCCS Tee Came to Life

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A SHIRT IS BORN: How the Exclusive 2024 FCCS Tee Came to Life

Since the Future Collector Car Show (FCCS) made its move to the Polo Field at WestWorld and takes place during Barrett-Jackson’s Scottsdale Auctions, the team has become dedicated to creating an exclusive commemorative T-shirt that celebrates the event and its participants. What makes the shirt special is that it showcases the prior year’s Best of Show winner, aiming to provide a unique keepsake and encourage a competitive show field. The 2024 shirt features the 2023 Best of Show winner, a 2002 Honda S2000 owned by David Flinn.

In the realm of creative design, crafting of the FCCS commemorative T-shirt is more than just placing a photo on a shirt and calling it a day ‒ it’s a meticulous process that involves expertise, innovation and talented designers. To create something truly special, the team turned to Corbin Snyder, Director of Marketing and Creative at Barrett-Jackson. Since the design had to feature the 2023 winner, the team had to start with a clean photo of the Best of Show S2K.

The creative team brought the S2K into the cutting-edge Barrett-Jackson studio for a photo shoot. The studio features a white cyclorama, or “cyc” for short. The cyc is a huge wall used to suggest unlimited space – a literal blank canvas – which makes the design process easier as there isn’t a distracting background. The studio also provides excellent controlled lighting which ensures an evenly lit car without any glaring reflections or strange light spots that would necessitate a significant amount of retouching for the final design. Barrett-Jackson Media Director Tim Heit played with multiple angles and took a variety of different photos to ensure the most compelling image for the commemorative tee.

Once the car was photographed, the images were turned over to the graphics team. Each design iteration went through a process of exploration, from vibrant hues to distinct angles.

With any project that comes across his desk, Snyder encourages his team to come up with a design for themselves, letting their imaginations run wild, then create a second one that fits within the project parameters and finally create a third they think would appeal to the masses. Making sure the design flows and is cohesive – as well as remembering the audience and where the design will live (in this case, on a T-shirt) – is key.

The core of this collective endeavor is rooted in the quest for a design that not only respects the 2023 Best of Show champion but also captures the essence of the FCCS event. It serves as a tribute to the commitment, originality and artistic craftsmanship embedded in creating a T-shirt to be treasured by both participants and spectators.

FCCS participants with a vehicle on the show field will receive the special shirt upon entry to the event, while spectators can pre-order the limited-edition tee on Barrett-Jackson’s official merchandise site here.

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By: Barrett-Jackson
Title: A SHIRT IS BORN: How the Exclusive 2024 FCCS Tee Came to Life
Sourced From: www.barrett-jackson.com/Media/Home/Reader/a-shirt-is-born-how-the-exclusive-2024-fccs-tee-came-to-life/
Published Date: Mon, 04 Dec 2023 23:42:33 +0000

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SLEAK AND SPEEDY: The ‘Pre-A’ 1955 Porsche 356 Speedster Continues to Impress

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SLEAK AND SPEEDY: The ‘Pre-A’ 1955 Porsche 356 Speedster Continues to Impress

Written by independent automotive journalist David Neyens

LOT #1355 – 1955 PORSCHE 356 SPEEDSTER – NO RESERVE

As the first production model ever to bear the Porsche name, the Type 356 swiftly evolved immediately after the first prototypes emerged in 1948 from a converted sawmill in Gmünd, Austria. Today, the foundational 356-series cars and their many variants are rightly regarded as the beginning of an automotive dynasty that continues uninterrupted today with a victorious, often dominant, competition record at the pinnacle of international motorsports.

Road-car sales were as crucial to Porsche’s earliest fortunes as racing success, and significant demand existed for open versions of Porsche’s increasingly refined 356 coupes. An early reply came in the form of Porsche’s early and relatively costly 356 America roadster, bodied by Erich Heuer’s Gläser Karosserie. However, New York’s legendary European-car importer Max Hoffman saw sufficient demand in America for a sharper-edged, no-frills Porsche convertible at a lower price point. Stuttgart’s Reutter Karosserie revised the America’s original bodywork and designed a curvaceous, high-waisted “bathtub” body style for the new 356 model, dubbed the Speedster. Retaining the prior America’s Type 540 internal designation, the sleeker Reutter-built 356 Speedster debuted in 1954 and went on to become one of Porsche’s most celebrated designs.

Equipped with a removable cut-down windscreen and simple yet supportive bucket seats, plus a low-profile soft-top and rudimentary side curtains for weather protection, the lightweight Speedster delivered noticeably sharper performance, braking and handling. Instruments consisted only of a speedometer and temperature gauge, with a tachometer and heater optional to keep the price down to just $2,995 when the Speedster made its New York debut.

The Speedster was a rather successful niche model for Porsche from launch, with some 200 built initially and over 1,000 produced for 1955, with their Volkswagen-based, yet effective mechanical components yielding the retrospective “Pre-A” designation used by Porsche enthusiasts. Late in 1955, the 356 and 356 Speedster received its first major revision to 356A standard, with engine displacement growing to 1,600 cubic centimetres and more unique Porsche mechanicals. Annual 356 A Speedster production eventually peaked at 1,416 units for 1957. Just 2,922 examples were built in all before the advent of the more comfortable and highly equipped 356 A Convertible D in 1959.

Contemporary road-test reports almost unanimously praised the Speedster, which must have appeared much like an alien spacecraft to Americans more accustomed to large V8 sedans.  Detailed coverage in the May 1955 issue of Road & Track of a 1500 Super-powered 356 Speedster was particularly enlightening and, as related, “… the engine is small, and the torque is proportionate. Yet, as we show in this road test, the latest Porsche 1500 S Speedster is capable of a very high performance. This result is due to an efficient engine, four useful gear ratios (all synchronized), and low overall weight. Common-sense design, thorough engineering, and good workmanship contribute to the overall effect and insure customer satisfaction in terms of reliability.”

Exemplifying the dual-purpose nature of the Speedster, Erich Bücklers drove the Road & Track test car to victory in a 1,500cc sports-car race at Willow Springs just a few days before the magazine’s road test was published. On the track, especially in American SCCA competition, the 356 Speedster was devastatingly effective. Light in weight and possessing sleek low-drag bodylines, the Speedster was an unqualified “giant-killer” on the track. In the hands of the era’s top amateur and professional drivers, the Speedster out-braked and out-handled the competition with remarkable ease everywhere it appeared. On the street, the Speedster’s avant-garde flair and adventurous attitude made it an instant hit with buyers and an enduring classic that continues to captivate successive generations of Porsche enthusiasts today

All surviving Speedsters are highly sought-after collectibles today, and this early “Pre-A” 356 Speedster from 1955 is a particularly compelling find. Finished in white with red upholstery and seats smartly piped in white, it retains the original air-cooled, 1500cc flat-4engine that was built to a larger-capacity 1600cc configuration. Fitted with two dual-venturi Zenith carburetors and now rated at a very usable 80 horsepower, the Speedster is equipped with a number of new supporting items, including the exhaust system, clutch disc, front transmission mount, front suspension bumpers, a

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By: Barrett-Jackson
Title: SLEAK AND SPEEDY: The ‘Pre-A’ 1955 Porsche 356 Speedster Continues to Impress
Sourced From: www.barrett-jackson.com/Media/Home/Reader/sleak-and-speedy-the-pre-a-1955-porsche-356-speedster-continues-to-impress-no-reserve-2024-scottsdale-auction/
Published Date: Mon, 04 Dec 2023 23:37:07 +0000

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