Preserving the Automobile

Preserving The Automible

Oct 5, 2015 – Simeone Foundation Automotive Museum

Rarely does an auction have a better title. For those of us tired of the endless line of trailer queens and nose-bleed-priced gods of autolympus there are auctions like this. Not to imply that the cars at this auction are any less important or worthy of attention.

Here you will find not just complete restored pieces of envy. You will also find the bits and pieces needed to make that envy happen. Tires, wheel, fenders; the kind of stuff you usually have to dig through moldy boxes to find. And among those parts are some glorious finds.

Also available are several cars that I’m assuming the museum never got around to restoring. Usually that means basketcase, but there are some runners up for sale.

Below is a glimpse at my three favorite lots:

old engineLot No. 126
1925 Balboa 8-cylinder, supercharged 100hp engine

According to the Encyclopedia of American Automobiles the Balboa was built for one year in Fullerton California. It is described as being sleek and powerful.

The auction estimate is $3,000 – $5,000. If you happened to have a Balboa in need of an engine, or were looking to build a period-correct hot rod, that’s pretty cheap.

Result: Sold for $8,750 (Apparently more than one bidder was a Balboite.)

model tLot 227
1918 Ford Model T Brisbane Runabout

What’s so special about a Model T? Look closely and you’ll see that the steering wheel is on the wrong side. This is a rare Canadian-built export model that was shipped to Australia.

What also makes it cool is that it needs work, which keeps it out of the nose-bleed section. With an estimate of $8,000 – $12,000 and no reserve, it could be an opportunity to get a great and important car for used Camry money.

Result: Sold for $4,400 (Way below what I thought it was worth.)

Hillman MinxLot 240
1960 Hillman Minx IIIA Convertible

I love Hillmans and the Minx Convertible is the king of Hillmans. It’s the kind of car that people who know nothing about cars think is a cool car.

Cars like this are the epitome of British “Motoring.” As long as you avoid expectations of speed and luxury, and don’t do anything as gauche as driving on an interstate, you will have an enjoyable ride.

The estimate of $7,000 – $10,000 puts it in used Honda Civic range, but way way cooler.

Result: Sold for $7,700 (A great car for that money.)

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Author: Tom
Writer, cyclist, RVer, etc.