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Pre-War Historic Mille Miglia Veteran

Discussion in 'Other Cars' started by deichenb, Dec 4, 2015.

  1. deichenb

    deichenb Formula Junior

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    #1 deichenb, Dec 4, 2015
    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 7, 2017
    I am moving my 1929 Chrysler 75 Le Mans Roadster along at RM Paris. It's been an incredible car, and has carried my through multiple spectacular events, including 3 Historic MM's and the 2012 Le Mans Classic. It has been exhaustively prepared, and RM will have the copious records and receipts available. The only reason I'm letting her go is that I have acquired the only authenticated, documented existing 1928 Chrysler 72 that ran in the Second Mille Miglia. If you've been looking to pass the Bentleys crossing Monte Terminillo (and out-brake them on the way down with the powerful 4-wheel hydraulics on the Chrysler!), this is the large, comfortable, powerful, reliable Pre-War car for you. She'll have a better chance of getting you accepted and across the finish line than anything at comparable cost.

    Here's the link to the listing and, a photo from Sports Car Digest (wearing #54), and an article to whet the appetite:

    1929 Chrysler Series 75 Roadster | Paris 2016 | RM Sotheby's

    Top 10 Mille Miglia 2015 Highlights - GTspirit

    Mille Miglia 2015 - Photos, Results, Report

    Forza Chrysler,
    David
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  2. deichenb

    deichenb Formula Junior

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    Mods - can you please correct the spelling of the title from 'Migllia' to 'Miglia?'

    Thank you! David
     
  3. craterface

    craterface Formula Junior

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    I had the good fortune to co-drive this car in the MM. It is SOLID. All the suspension, bushings, steering, brakes, motor, etc, are redone so it performs like it did when it was new. The car is a tank, in a good way. DE has invested big money to totally rebuild this car to get it to this point. So we had no breakdowns and no surprises. We passed many broken cars by the side of the road.
    Doing the MM in a prewar car is highly recommended. First, you are much more likely to get in. There just aren't as many prewar cars. So, your Chrysler will go ahead of a 300sl, xk120, Speedster, etc. Second, you depart first from each place. If you fall behind, they make the faster cars sit while they whisk you to the front. So, you don't hang around at each starting point for a few hours like the later cars. Third, you run with some crazy iron. Bugattis, Blower Bentleys, Mercedes SSKs, etc.
    I had never driven a prewar car until the day before the event, and I loved it. Like a motorcycle on four wheels. Just a blast.
    If you are thinking about doing the MM, do it. In this car. You only go around once.
     
  4. deichenb

    deichenb Formula Junior

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    Yes, it was an incredible MM this past year with the car, and it was a joy to drive the event with you. I'd contend that the car is probably higher-performing than new with the modern tolerances in the engine and better materials in the brakes, tires, etc. Either way - you are totally right. She is a TANK in a good way; truly an event War Hammer. In the US she'd be great in the CO Grand and CA Mille as well.

    Excellent points about the better probability of acceptance in a pre-War car and skipping the ever-longer MM cues with the low 1929 production-date Mille Miglia start number. It is very gratifying to get waved by the later cars instead of sitting, overheating, and burning the battery/starter! The new owner will have a blast with the 75.
     
  5. TTR

    TTR Formula 3
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    #5 TTR, Dec 11, 2015
    Last edited: Dec 11, 2015
    Good luck with sale !

    Having myself been a life long vintage car enthusiast and professional restorer with perhaps more than average exposure to pre-war examples ranging up from 1902 Autocar or 1906 Holsman by both, driving & working on them, I've often wondered why Chrysler Corp. vehicles have always been overlooked in favor of Fords and alike, especially when practically for almost same money one could get a much better engineered car with at least twice the chassis/handling characteristics and overall quality, even in Chrysler Corp. "economy line" cars, like Plymouth or Dodge.

    Although my "lowly" vintage "hot rod" ('32 Plymouth PB Sport Roadster, originally hot rodded/modified around late-40's/ early-50's in upstate N.Y.) may not qualify for organized "Vintage" Races or Rallies like MM, etc I still manage to enjoy it several thousand miles annually on extended road trips and have concluded it providing more (REAL old school) driving pleasure than any other car I own or have owned in past 40 years. And someday I too hope to take it to an extended European tour :)
     
  6. Cargirl_

    Cargirl_ Rookie
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    "I am moving my 1929 Chrysler 75 Le Mans Roadster along at RM Paris."

    Bummer. If I had known the auction route was an option I would have talked you into consigning it with the Keno Brothers Auction house for the June Hershey D'Elegance. It would have done very well in that setting.
     
  7. deichenb

    deichenb Formula Junior

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    TTR - Thank you! Great to see an experienced pre-War enthusiast and restorer here on the thread commenting on the 1920's Chryslers. The PB Roadsters are lovely cars themselves and have wonderful curb appeal. Does yours still have the stock 4-cylinder, or was it retrofitted with the 70-series "Red Head" 6, or possibly a V8 in the 1940's/50's?

    Cargirl - I am sure the Keno Bros will have a great sale, and Hershey is a nice venue. The car has been in the EU since the 2012 Le Mans Classic, so it just made sense to have the auction on the Continent rather than sea- or air-freight the 75 for a sale. RM's Paris venue is fabulous, and they often have a few sporting/Le Mans eligible Pre-War cars on offer.
     
  8. TTR

    TTR Formula 3
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    #8 TTR, Dec 11, 2015
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    Thank for asking. There are several pics of it on Silver Subscription thread called Wild West Road Trip.
    When I bought the car nearly 30 years ago, it was literally a "basket case" with no running gear, O.E. or otherwise, but had evidence of having been subjected to previous V8 "hot rodding", most likely with flat head Ford type engine and transmission conversion.
    Prior to my ownership, last time the car was road registered was in '52 (I still have a copy of that and the N.Y. plates assigned for it) and the evidence I had/have suggested this conversion was likely done during that period (late 40's/ early 50's).
    I just opted to rebuild it (in late 80's) using a all early 50's period correct and mostly Chrysler Corp. components instead. Every component on the car could've been obtained in 1955. Nothing technologically newer. '52 DeSoto V8, '52 Dodge P-U 3-spd, '51 Dodge rear axle, 6-Volt electricals, etc... with no creature comforts of any kind.

    P.S. David, if you think my comments or pictures are distraction or inappropriate on this thread dedicated to your car, feel free to ask mods to remove them. Timo
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  9. Cargirl_

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    deichenb - "I have acquired the only authenticated, documented existing 1928 Chrysler 72 that ran in the Second Mille Miglia".

    What an excellent find. Congratulations.
     
  10. deichenb

    deichenb Formula Junior

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    TTR - re: the as-found photos-such a project! I'll find the post-restoration photos in the Silver Section. Sounds like you did it righteously with the early-50's Chrysler gear. My 75 came from Washington State, and it lived a quiet life with a funeral home owner who was a Chrysler collector prior to me acquiring it in 2009 or 10. I have records and photos for it from that owner back to 1966; as far as I can tell, it was always a solid, cared for, dead stock old car. Still wears a 1950's lacquer repaint.

    Cargirl - thank you! The "find" of an authentic MM Chrysler road racer is the only thing that could have encouraged me to sell the fully-done 75. You'll see my 'new' 72 out and about in the US in 2016. It's getting recommissioned in Italy now, and I'm trying to determine with certainty if it was also a 1928 Le Mans team car. It's the appropriate original color (black) beneath an old repaint and has several identical details to the #7 Le Mans car...
     
  11. TTR

    TTR Formula 3
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    Yes, mine was somewhat more "challenging" project. Even the seller, who had a completely restored example and whom I never met in person, had saved this merely as a parts car and kept insisting that I should understand it being "too rough & missing too many parts" for restoration candidate. For me, this was not a problem as I had been already looking for one to build into an old school hot rod I had dreamt of since I was about 12 or so.
    After few back-and-forth phone calls and couple of stacks of photos he sent me, I just bought it and had it shipped here to California. Rest, as they say, is (my) history with it.

    Incidentally, the choice of the DeSoto Hemi as the power source was purely accidental.
    I had a much more ambitious idea, but an older and more experineced friend at time offered this freshly rebuilt unit to me practically free, so that I could get the car up & running before I embark on the journey to come up with my "real" engine, which now nearly 3 decades later I still haven't got started beyond some rough engineering sketches.

    Your "new" 72 sounds like an amazing discovery. Can't wait to see it.
    It's quite interesting to be involved with some historically note worthy or significant vehicles.
    I too have been fortunate to experience some and even now I'm involved with restoration of an Argetine-Anglo-American-Italian(!?!) built one-off sports racer from mid-50's and have assisted with several other historical racing or speed record cars.
     
  12. deichenb

    deichenb Formula Junior

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    Yes, it's fascinating to be around historic cars. They're really living history. In the MM, the 75 starts with incredible storied cars (as craterface pointed out), including genuine works Bentleys, GP Bugs, SSK's and even the epic Alfa 8C. Most could have books written about them. It's living history, and simply magical.

    Best of luck with your multi-continental sports racer! Looking forward to a thread on that one.
     
  13. TTR

    TTR Formula 3
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    #13 TTR, Dec 11, 2015
    Last edited: Dec 11, 2015
    Thanks. Yes, this "multi-continental" sports racer is also quite complex and lengthy project, which I've been commissioned to provide only a portion of component services and reconstruction efforts based on very limited original information available, including some which even contradict the actual feasibility of their use. I even believe that some of these contradictions were likely contributing to its early retirement from the public eye soon after its initial appearances nearly 60 years ago and which I'm to resolve with authentic alternatives to pass historical scrutiny.
    Perhaps interestingly, its existence and restoration still continues to be an international affair. Some components are in UK, some in South America, some in my care here in California, some just missing and yet to be determined how, where or by whom they'll be rebuilt/reconstructed.
    Also, please excuse my somewhat vague description of the car. It's not mine, so to share certain specifics or details of it in public is not an option at this time.
    Who knows, maybe some day it'll share events like MM with your Chrysler 72 or this great 75 with its next custodian :)
     
  14. TTR

    TTR Formula 3
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    David, based on your experience with this 75, what would you say its comfortable top highway cruising speed is ? Other than 3 carb set-up, does it feature any technical upgrades ?
     
  15. intrepidcva11

    intrepidcva11 F1 Rookie
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    Gorgeous, David; what is R-R Sothebys' estimate for bidding range?
     
  16. deichenb

    deichenb Formula Junior

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    Thank you intrepidcva. It is going in with a Euro 130-170 estimate.
     
  17. deichenb

    deichenb Formula Junior

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    TTR - the car will cruise in top (3rd) gear at 60mph all day long. It's good for bursts to it's top speed of about 80mph with the windshield up. Windshield down (with goggles on!) one can probably eek out close to 83-85mph. It's straight and true at any speed, and there is plenty of confidence with the 4-wheel hydraulic brakes. (Alfas and Bentleys in 1929 were running cables.) The other upgrades include modern bushing materials, modern drum and shoe material, brand new (2012) original-style Borrani wires with bespoke hubs (for safety - if you drop an 85y/o wheel it can crack), an electric fuel pump, and double deep-cycle 6V batteries so there is plenty of juice for the lights on nighttime events.
     
  18. TTR

    TTR Formula 3
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    #18 TTR, Dec 13, 2015
    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 7, 2017
    Sounds like a very enjoyable traveling speed. I cruise mine usually around 65-70mph with occasional bursts (when passing or...) up to 80-85. My engine and final drive choices offer plenty more in reserve, but I don't feel the need.

    Yes, O.E. brakes on all early Chrysler Corp. cars are amazingly good.
    For example, I spent several hours & couple of hundred miles today road testing this 25 years younger sibling rarity (see below) and its O.E.M., at-the-time (1950's) "innovative design" braking system is considerably less confidence inspiring than those O.E.M. brakes on my '32.
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  19. deichenb

    deichenb Formula Junior

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    Gorgeous DeSoto tail fins. Virgil Exner's artwork there. It's interesting how Chrysler changed its direction as it came out of the depression and WW2, and wasn't known as an "engineers' company" anymore. It is a romantic notion that Chrysler did eventually return to la Sarthe in 1996 (after a 64 year absence from the circuit, with the last 75's in 1929 and the CD-8 running in 1931!) with Oreca Vipers.
     
  20. deichenb

    deichenb Formula Junior

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    This is the last week to apply for the 2016 Historic Mille Miglia - application deadline 31 December. Don't be left out next year! This Chrysler is a strong, proven entry.
     
  21. TTR

    TTR Formula 3
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    David,
    How would the application process work with a case like this ? Could one submit an application (for this car) based on hopes of favorable outome of the auction ? Or if you, still the owner at the time of application deadline, were to apply and got accepted, could the entry be transferred to winning bidder if he/she wish to participate ? Would the accepted entries be known before the auction ?
     
  22. deichenb

    deichenb Formula Junior

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    That's a great question, TTR. There will not be an application submitted for the 2016 MM. I will not be the owner of the car after RM Paris - the car is selling all the way with no reserve. The new owner would apply with the car in 2017. So what I mean by "next year" is the 2017 MM. I apologize that my wording in the prior post is confusing!

    Typically, MM applications open in October, close towards the end of December, and the accepted car list comes out in mid-February for the event in May.
     
  23. deichenb

    deichenb Formula Junior

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    *apply for the 2017 MM in October of 2016
     
  24. TTR

    TTR Formula 3
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    Thanks for the clarification, David. I have couple of clients who have expressed interest in participating MM and I've advised them acquiring a previously accepted, well sorted & proven vehicle with relatively easy & simple maintenance & prep requirements, something like this 75 for example.

    Timo
     
  25. deichenb

    deichenb Formula Junior

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    Thanks TTR. I appreciate the kind comments.

    Cargirl - I saw the lovely Arnolt Bristol you are representing listed in its own thread in November. Also a lovely car, and I wish you luck in the sale.

    Fortunately, there are plenty of things to do with the Chrysler between the February sale and the 2017 MM, including the option of returning to the 2016 Le Mans Classic or Gran Prix Nuvolari with it, running the Coppa Della Dolomiti in July, or taking it on the Targa Florio in the Fall. There are so many great EU events, and I look forward to seeing the 75 with its new owner on the road!
     

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