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I'm guessing this is a part from an emergency vehicle... HELP!!!

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A friend of mine purchased this at a swap meet and was told simply "it came off an old car". It measures approx. 10" tall and 10" wide, and is clearly stamped "Chrysler" on the interior of the housing. There is a manual switch on the back which powers the lights, and although one lamp is burned out, they appear to flash. My assumption is that it is from some type of emergency vehicle from the 30's or 40's, but the existence of the manual switch is confusing.

What the heck is this thing and what car did it come off of?

Thanks in advance to any and all who can offer some insight.

I appreciate the help!


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I have been into Chrysler products since I was a kid in the 50's and have studied everything from prototypes to actual production cars and have never seen anything like your item. I suggest that it may have come off of a Chrysler built boat of some sort. I know that Chrysler made parts for Gar Wood Boat Company in Marysville, Michigan during WW2. They made a lot of Navy personnel boats. The manual switch would sort of make sense if bow mounted.

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Is there any chance it could be some of the custom Art-Deco lighting built specially for the Chrysler Building ?

Accent/Wall/Task lighting??

Maybe even a gift or presentation piece?

Did the wiring look automotive, or could it of been commercial/residential??



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What about a airport vehicle? What did they use back then for night landings - where rural airports well lighted? Even today when they do check of the runways the vehicle turns on 'emergency' or flashing lights so it is not confused with a runway light.

I also like the boat idea. The design hints that this was obviously something that needed to be sealed from the elements and possible 'point-able' or rotated to face the direction of interest.

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THanks everyone for your replies and insights. THe unit is definitely not household, as it appears to be either 6 or 12 volts max. I'm inclined to agree with the "boat" idea, only because I can't see how it would fit on a car and still be manually switched. It could also have been a gift of some sort. More questions than answers at this point I'm afraid. As for pictures, I have none, but the next thing I'll do is forward this web site on to the people who sent the query to me and let them take it from there.

Thanks again for your kind assistance, - Old car people are the best!


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