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Auto collectibles and paraphernalia...

andys120andys120 Member Posts: 23,246
Not "collectible autos" but "auto collectibles..."
That is this topic is to talk about stuff we collect besides actual full scale cars.

I myself collect just about everything: Magazines, License plates, sales brochures, die-cast and plastic models, books art and videos.

If I had a dime for every item I had I could probably run out and buy a Classic Duesenberg or Ferrari.

What about you? What do you collect? Let's talk here.

Some of my more oddball items: A Tachometer (Smiths) from a TR-250,
An original brochure for a '62 Cobra 260 featuring a photo of Shelby's Secretary smiling in formal beauty queen attire before a "Snake", A 1/18th scale Porsche 917K in Martini & Rossi livery ('70 Sebring winner)that I've dirtied up to look like after the race, A Bill Neale watercolor of the Chapparal 2F signed by the artist. A signed copy of "the Encyclopedia of Motorsport" (by author--it's incredibly comprehensive).

2001 BMW 330ci/E46, 2008 BMW 335i conv/E93



  • speedshiftspeedshift Member Posts: 1,598
    Brochure insert in Motor Trend for the '64 GTO. Also 1969 Pontiac GTO, GP and Sprint Six brochures.

    Lots of owners manuals collected from wrecking yards over the years.

    A bagful of brochures from an early '70s SF auto show, including manufacturers who no longer grace these shores.

    Lots of brochures from 1966 when my parents bought a new car.

    Ford brochure for the four cam Indy engine based on the small block.

    Radio, hubcap and horn button from my first car, a '60 Corvair. Only recognizable items left on car after the accident ;-).

    Oil bath air filter housing off a '61 Chevy 348, looks similar to the one they used on '50s Power Packs. I could be persuaded to part with this.

    First wheels I had, a Norman of England three speed bike that was almost taller than I was.

    Growing up I had a number of what I guess they call "promos", models already built. Let's see, I had a '58 Olds, '57 Plymouth, '55 Plymouth, probably ten others I can't remember. In fact I remember picking out the Olds from a display table in a shop in Northland Shopping Center in Detroit in 1958. Even then I had unerring taste.
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Member Posts: 64,481
    Books----I have a LOT of car books, and some very old and I think pretty valuable ones. But mostly I use them.

    The most valuable car books are usually, 99 out of 100 times, marque-specific. If you find books that cover lots of cars, or books on mechanics, even if they are very old, they are usually worthless.

    Signed auto books can be worth collecting as well.

    I also collect clippings, stories, specifications, etc. from magazines around the world on specific marques and put them into large binders. This, again, for reference mostly.

    Last of all, I have some old metal toys I really like.

    The BIG DEAL in "automobilia" these days is large porcelin or metal signage. People are knocking down $3,000 for some of them on Ebay.
  • isellhondasisellhondas Member Posts: 20,342
    I had kept some of the old models I built back in the early sixties. I remember you could build them stock or customize them.

    I usually kept them stock and actually did a pretty good job.

    But...I would tire of them quickly and we would usually blow them up with firecrackers.
  • ghuletghulet Member Posts: 2,564
    ...I still wonder to this day why I would spend my entire allowance every week on Matchbox cars, only to simulate 'accidents' with them by taking a hammer, brick or some form of pyrotechnics to destroy them. Little boys are strange.

    Anywho, I have a fairly large collection (over 1000) of auto ads, mostly from the '50s-60s, more than a few books (most of which are non-technical), lots of brochures procured from the Chicago Auto Shows (unfortunately only dating sporadically back to 1980 or so, though I've gone every year since '77), a 1964 Porsche brochure. Lots of assorted 'stuff'.

    I have a very hard time keeping myself off eBay to grow my collection.
  • carphotocarphoto Member Posts: 37
    Well as I sit here in my "office" I make a slow turn and see a bookcase my Dad built for me that take up the end of the room. Let's see, complete set of AQ, pretty much everything Chris Nixon has written, most of it signed. First editions of "Unfair Advantage", "The Miller Dynasty" (signed), "Ford, The Dust and the Glory", "Daytona Cobra Coupes", "Excellence was Expected", "The Last Open Road" and on and on. I need a second bookcase. Then there is other stuff. Piston from a Cosworth DFV I bougth at the first Long beach F1 race, various diecasts, a lighter given as a prize from the Northrop Recreational Sports Car Club about 1958, a Halda Twinmaster I found at a swap meet for $15. Lots of trophies and plaques from various British Car and Triumph meets. Stacks and stacks of magazines, old race programs, newer race programs, race posters, lots of race posters, some going back to the '50s. I focus mostly on the posters now. I like '50s and '60s era GP posters where they used illustration instead of photos.

    And last but not least, photos, lots and lots and lots of photos, mostly 35mm slides I've shot in the last 25 years. My most prized "stuff" are a number of photos I shot that I had printed and mounted and then autographed by the subject driver including Gilles Villeneuve, Rene Arnoux, Didier Pironi, Nigel Mansell, Al Unser Jr and Sr, Rick Mears, Bobby Rahal, John Morton and more I can't remember. Then there's all the Triumph stuff and everthing ever printed related to the Swallow Doretti.

    Ya, I got it bad.
  • ndancendance Member Posts: 323
    If you saw how many older car magazines ('50s/'60s) I pitched this year.

    The thing I tend to pick up and keep are vanity press, single make books. Ed Cunneen's COPO book is a nice example.
  • chris396chris396 Member Posts: 53
    You should have put them on eBay.
  • ndancendance Member Posts: 323
    and checked the prices people were getting. Not really worth the time. My favorite people are the ones tearing the magazines up and selling individual ads.

    On the other hand, I got about a thousand bucks from a stack of ACM SIGGRAPH magazines that were holding up my monitor.
  • andys120andys120 Member Posts: 23,246
    Please don't thro throw away a '50s car magazine without letting me know ([email protected]). I have everything imagineable for the 60s but very little on the 50s. I especially like Mechanix Illustrated with McCahill's road test and of course, Road and Track.

    I didn't really get to buying and savings car mags until I was 18 ('63). I still have the first R&T I ever bought and most of the R&Ts and C&Ds from the 60s

    2001 BMW 330ci/E46, 2008 BMW 335i conv/E93

  • grbeckgrbeck Member Posts: 2,358
    Sounds like you have an impressive magazine collection, andys120. Unfortunately, my collection doesn't contain any magazines from the 1960s. I save issues of Special Interest Autos, Collectible Automobile, Car & Driver and Automobile.

    Do you store your magazines in slip covers or cases? There was a company in Philadelphia that made customized book cases for Special Interest Autos, Car & Driver and Automobile. Unfortunately, the company now only makes cases for Special Interest Autos.

    My "library" (as I call it - LOL!) also contains numerous marque-related books. Probably the most "unique" book is a copy of "American Motors - the Last Independent" signed by George Romney and the author, Patrick Foster.

    I also have about 100 mint and boxed Matchbox cars from the 1950s, 1960s and 1970s, as well as several Brooklin models. Unfortunately, I still don't have any place to display them. Those non-Superfast Matchboxes are getting tough to find at car and toy shows.
  • andys120andys120 Member Posts: 23,246
    I'm just too lazy and I've got other priorities.

    They're stashed in cardboard boxes and I'm planing on getting rid of anything from about '74 to '84 (the Automotive Dark Age IMO)

    2001 BMW 330ci/E46, 2008 BMW 335i conv/E93

  • lemkolemko Member Posts: 15,261
    ...about 17 diecast models from the Danbury and Franklin Mint. I don't know if they'll have any collectibility in the future but they are very well made and highly detailed, especially the newer ones. I also have a tin Japanese toy 1950 Cadillac that is in excellent condition.

    Also, I have a box of aluminum coins that were dispensed by Sunoco/DX gasoline stations from 1968-69 depicting antique cars from the 1900s through the 1920s.
  • lemkolemko Member Posts: 15,261
    ...I'd like to have those '74 - '84 magazines for a laugh. I can imagine how much trouble those auto editors had to go through to put a positive spin on the mediocre cars of that era.

    I have every issue of "Collectible Automobile" dating back to their May 1984 debut. This is perhaps the finest, most informative auto magazine of them all. The editorial content is top drawer and the photography is excellent.
  • ghuletghulet Member Posts: 2,564
    ...the 'Future Collectible' and 'Car Spotter' segments are especially interesting. I agree, Lemko, the photography and general quality of that magazine are first rate.

    I also remember another collector car magazine (the name of which escapes me right now) that was published in the '80s, which either ceased production or merged with another magazine around 1990. I remember writing a letter to them as a teenager, which was published. I liked this magazine in particular because they weren't muscle car or modification focused, like nearly every other old car magazine at the time. They focused more on just nice old cars, often even sedans or luxury cars, with the emphasis on originality, or the restoration to original specs. Anyone want to take an educated guess at the name of this one?
  • speedshiftspeedshift Member Posts: 1,598
    Special Interest Autos?
  • chris396chris396 Member Posts: 53
    SIA is one of my favorites.
  • andys120andys120 Member Posts: 23,246
    I've seen "Collectible Auto", it doesn't ring a bell. I'll have to look for it. I have plenty of SIAs tho.

    Is any one interested in swapping or selling license plates? I'm particularly interested in Southern or midwestern states and anything foreign. I also look for odd plates like the '63 Illinois plates with the John Deere colors (a centennial commemorative).

    Given the geographic broadness of TH we could get a nice license plate exchange going.

    2001 BMW 330ci/E46, 2008 BMW 335i conv/E93

  • grbeckgrbeck Member Posts: 2,358
    I think the magazine you are referring to is Car Exchange. It debuted in 1979 or 1980 and was published through the mid-1980s. If I recall correctly, around 1988 it merged with another magazine, but I can't remember the title. It didn't merge with Collectible Automobile or Special Interest Autos.

    lemko: Hang on to those 1984 issues of Collectible Automobile. They are hard to find! I have every issue since 1985. I store them in the silver book cases specially made for the magazine. They really help preserve each issue.
  • idletaskidletask Member Posts: 171
    I read 4 different auto mags and keep them for 3 months before throwing them away. Well, except when I spot an interesting article/review (in particular I still have that magazine from 99 when they road tested the 330d, ultimately it's that review which made me buy the car), so I have something like 100 mags in cardboard boxes.

    No car books... My main source of automotive history has always been Internet, so one of my important files is the bookmark one :)

    I read other kind of books about cars. In particular I have several books on Newtonian mechanics, car mechanics, fluid mechanics and the like. I still can't understand quite a few of them though. Fluid mechanics are not easy!

    I have one unusual object: the 17" temporary spare wheel of my 330d! I found it so absurd for a kind of this price to come with such a thing that I keep it just for memory. It may be well joined by the one on my new one, as I intend to get a real spare shortly.
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Member Posts: 64,481
    Don't feel bad. Some exotic Ferraris were sold with only a can of tire inflator in the trunk!
  • dranoeldranoel Member Posts: 79
    A hammer from the tool kit of a 1936 Chevy Master 4-door, a screw jack from a 1939 Packard Super 8 touring sedan , a screw driver from the tool kit of a 1959 Renault Dauphine, various open end metric wrenches from the tool kit of a 1957 Borgward Combi, program from the 1968 Monaco Grand Prix, program from the 1968 US grand Prix, bill of sale for a 1932 Chevy Confederate 4-door. A rather eclectic mix of memorabilia, I believe.
  • grbeckgrbeck Member Posts: 2,358
    idletask: What are the titles of French car magazines? The local bookstores do carry British car magazines, which are very entertaining and well-written.
  • carnut4carnut4 Member Posts: 574
    I haven't posted for a couple weeks. Been on a "vacation" of sorts.

    What collectibles do I have?

    Complete set of Collectible Automoble from their first issue in 1984.

    Nearly complete set of Special Interest Autos-I buy a few more to complete my collection every time I go to a swapmeet.

    Lots of old magazines from the 50s and 60s [Hotrod, Motor Trend, Motor Life, Auto Age, Pop Mechanics, etc].Also, two of the first issues of Hotrod [1948] in mint condition. The cover of one has a picture of a Pontiac six "lakester"-the things they used to race on the dry lakes in So California in those days.

    Car Ads from the 30s, 40s, 50s, and 60s. The walls of my house are covered with framed old car ads and others [Post toasties, Wurlitzer Jukebox, Coke, Pepsi-the Norman Rockwell illustrations].

    I also have all of the nearly 70 plastic models I built in the late 50s and early 60s. My first AMT kit was a 58 Ford Convertible, which I painted red and white. The first kit I ever built was a 55 Cadillac Eldorado convertible by Revell.

    Also-some old sparkplugs from the 20s or 30s-new-still in the box wrapped in tissue paper.

    I'm outa time here for now. I have more to share-later.
  • isellhondasisellhondas Member Posts: 20,342
    Wow, you still have your models?

    Lucky you didn't grow up in my neighborhood.

    Someone always had firecrackers!
  • speedshiftspeedshift Member Posts: 1,598
    Carnut, I want to see more commitment to the hobby ;-).
  • lemkolemko Member Posts: 15,261
    ...does anybody recall the miniature license plate key fobs that were once dispensed by the Disabled Veterans? I have a few including a replica of the plate my Dad's car wore in the early 1970s.
  • isellhondasisellhondas Member Posts: 20,342
    I had forgotton all about those!
  • andys120andys120 Member Posts: 23,246
    my folks used to get those miniature tags every year.

    2001 BMW 330ci/E46, 2008 BMW 335i conv/E93

  • carnut4carnut4 Member Posts: 574
    When were the last of those license plate keychains produced? I know it's been years.

    Isell-yeah-hard to believe I still have all those old models. When I went away to college I never went back home, but my mom carefully put all those models in two big boxes, and then redid my old room. Now there's a Mom for ya! That model collection I have is worth some bucks-from what I see at the swapmeets when I go. Not that I care what they're worth. Of course, I wouldn't sell any of them. Be more fun to pick the one I least care about and blow it up with a cherry bomb. he-he-. Just kidding.
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Member Posts: 64,481
    Where can you get cherry bombs anymore? I need some.
  • blh7068blh7068 Member Posts: 375
    pretty much pertain to my 71 firebird or Pontiac of that year. One thing I do have that is not seen often is a 71 pontiac dealer manual, the one given to the sales folks so they can learn all about the pontiac lineup. its in good shape an is still in the original binder. dont know if its worth anything though. Thumbing through the acessories section I learned that you could order a cassette player in the firebird for 71, which to me was interesting since 8 tracks were "in".
  • isellhondasisellhondas Member Posts: 20,342
    You "need" some cherry bombs?

    Mad at someone, perhaps?

    Brings back memories..when I was a kid, if we got lucky we might get ahold of some cherry bombs. For those who don't know, these were about 2/3rds the size of a golf ball, red in color, with a short green fuse. About three times as loud (and destructive) as a large firecracker.

    I think the M-80's have replaced these now.

    But the LOUDEST and most dangerous of all, was a Seal Control bomb! These were sold to commercial fishermen who would light them and throw them over the side of their fishing boats. They would go off underwater and scare seals away from their nets. They were about 1/2 the size of a toilet paper core, yellow and black, with a large fuse that came out the side. There was a warning lable on them..." Do not discharge above water"


    Since I grew up in a fishing town, it seemed these would turn up once in awhile. They were EXTREMLY LOUD and very scary!

    Then there was the night we threw one into an alley in back of a Chinese restaurant....

  • carnut4carnut4 Member Posts: 574
    Yeah I remember the Seal control bombs too. I was down at Pierpoint landing one time...I'm sure you know where that is! We used to go down there and get a "mile long hotdog" [actually about a 10 inch hotdog, with EVERYTHING on it.]
    I went down there usually in my buddy's Dad's 55 Ford Ranch Wagon-the strippo one, with rubber around the windshield and no chrome except for the grill and taillights. It was that beige color, with white door and window frames. A popular color for Fords that year.
  • andys120andys120 Member Posts: 23,246
    1960s engine badges. I've been trying get together a collection of these and I've managed to cage a few from auto swap meets but I'd really like to find a supplier of NOS reproductions. I'd really like to get badges for 327 and 409 Chevies, any Ford badge with the black thunderbird, particularly 406 and 427 and of course any of the big MoPar Hemis Failing that there's a line of miniatures of these that are tie-pins and I'd like to get more of them. I hasven't been able to get more since the place I got them went out of business. Does anyone have any ideas?

    And I'd love to find a good source of racing Decals, particularly F1 and GT racing.

    2001 BMW 330ci/E46, 2008 BMW 335i conv/E93

  • isellhondasisellhondas Member Posts: 20,342
    We grew up not far from each other in the same period of time. It's probably a good thing we didn't get together! :)

    Yeah...Pierpoint Landing..the Pike...long gone.
  • carnut4carnut4 Member Posts: 574
    Yeah-like maybe racing the boulevards [Lakewood, Bellflower, Artesia, Long Beach, PCH, etc etc] between Bellflower and San Pedro. Hey, I got enough tickets as it was.
    Do you remember Mike Salta Pontiac on N. Long Beach Boulevard? The salesmen would stand on the sidewalk wearing dark glasses, sizing up all the potential customers as they drove up to look at cars.
    What a trip that was.
  • speedshiftspeedshift Member Posts: 1,598
    I don't know where to get them but this reminds me of some trivia about '60s badges.

    The rarest 409 badge is the '65 409 used only from September '64 through January '65. I don't think the '61s had engine identification.

    Very early '65 390 Fords used the same t-shaped emblem as the 352 but this was quickly changed to the diagonally striped badge used through '67.

    I've seen some interesting '50s badging like the Dodge D-500 and the Stude T-10. I think Hudson had a special Twin H emblem for its dual carb cars.
  • wevkwevk Member Posts: 179
    As I recall the plastic Bow Tie (?) emblems on the grill and on the trunk was enhanced by a V when the car was equipped with a 283 and further enhanced with crossed flags when equiped with a 348. Seemed real important when I was a kid!
  • andys120andys120 Member Posts: 23,246
    You kept a sharp eye on the fenders of passing cars looking for those little badges on the fenders indicating the car was packing a hot motor.

    2001 BMW 330ci/E46, 2008 BMW 335i conv/E93

  • speedshiftspeedshift Member Posts: 1,598
    I got to thinking about the correlation between the the two rare badges I mentioned above and I wonder if maybe I'm onto something (good material for a doctoral thesis).

    Both the early '65 390 and 409 badges were very similar to those for lesser engines (352 and 327 respectively) and hard to differentiate at a glance. They were redesigned quickly, maybe because the dealers thought the difference was too subtle to stroke egos. I wonder if anyone here knows the story.

    Andre, does your encyclopedic knowledge extend back that far?
  • stumack1stumack1 Member Posts: 56
    Pierrepont Landing (Pierrepont = Stone Bridge). South of Watertown, theres an exit for it off 81!
  • isellhondasisellhondas Member Posts: 20,342
    Pierpoint Landing was in Long Beach, CA.
  • carnut4carnut4 Member Posts: 574
    Whichever one had the mile-long hotdogs-and not far away, an amusement park called The Pike, which featured a large rollercoaster.

    Isell-is that rollercoaster still there?
  • a_l_hubcapsa_l_hubcaps Member Posts: 518
    This is a good topic!

    I have hundreds of matchbox-type cars (Matchbox, Hot Wheels, other no-name brands). Mostly from the '70s and newer, as I was born in 1983.

    About a dozen large die-cast models, and some built plastic kits including a 1977 Ford Pinto, a 1979 Ford Courier and a 1981 Dodge Omni 024. I have weird tastes, I admit it! I got into an eBay model kit buying spree a few years ago, so I've got a whole table full of sealed MPC kits from the '70s and '80s (including the awesome 1976 Chevette Rally...I'm going to have to build that one eventually) that I bought and couldn't bring myself to open up and start tinkering with. They'll be worth something someday, I tell you! :-)

    I also have every issue of Road and Track, Motor Trend and Car and Driver going back to 1991. My first was the 1991 MT Car of the Year issue, with the '91 Caprice on the cover.

    And then, there's the 4,000+ hubcaps. But I'm sort-of in the business, so those are "inventory" not a "collection" :-)

    -Andrew L
  • a_l_hubcapsa_l_hubcaps Member Posts: 518
    OK, I thought you guys might get a kick out of this. Here are some pics of my basement.

    Some of my wheel covers:


    Some alloy wheel center caps:


    95% of this stuff was found on the road. People don't realize how many hubcaps are lying around until they see them all in one place :-) Disclaimer: Please don't post asking to buy caps from me. I don't want Edmunds giving me the boot for violating their TOS.

    -Andrew L

  • andys120andys120 Member Posts: 23,246
    On a country road that had a lot of traffic and potholes in it. It was hubcap/wheel cover city but I wasn't interested in piling them up so I just propped em up against a tree so the owner could see it next time he drove thru.

    E-mail me if you want to add a '71 Fiat hubcap to your ..uh..inventory.

    2001 BMW 330ci/E46, 2008 BMW 335i conv/E93

  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Member Posts: 64,481
    Hey, I saw one I want!
  • ghuletghulet Member Posts: 2,564
    ...dammit, I wish I would have kept my collection going. I had quite a few hubcaps for a while (big family, grandparents had a big garage with lots of leftovers, then I found a lot roadside), then I ditched them in one of my apartments. Maybe I should go back and see if they're still there (nothing too serious, but I had a full set of '68 Camaro caps, some '60s Pontiac low-line caps, a '69 finned Chevy cap--the Caprice/Vette type) and a bunch of assorted stuff, mostly '70s GM). Nice collection you have there!!
  • a_l_hubcapsa_l_hubcaps Member Posts: 518

    By "Pontiac low-line", do you mean the small dog-dish type caps? If so, those are very popular in good condition, especially on eBay. I've seen them go for upwards of $100/set when really nice.

    Most of my caps are from about 1980 to the present, though I have a fair amount of '70s stuff and a few from the '50s and '60s. Occasionally, I'll happen upon a spot where there was a pothole 20 years ago, and I'll find a bunch of vintage caps lying in the bushes.

    -Andrew L
  • ghuletghulet Member Posts: 2,564
    ...I'm pretty sure they are the standard big car caps for the '64 (and it was a full set, in remarkable condition, IIRC). I might have to find out if my caps are still at my old apartment on the porch (I really wouldn't be surprised, even though it was like six years ago).
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