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PreWar Mercedes Benz


alsancle

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1 hour ago, George K said:

I have heard the same thing about Bugatti. Once you’ve gone through a eight cylinder MB and have a solid fuel system without the overly complicated radial piston fuel pump their like taking care of any truck. One thing for sure is don’t jump the blower in low gear. Know a guy who did and he split low gear in half. Tragic flaw that an internal key way lines up with the bottom of the outside gear tooth. A car is just a car.

 

There was a time,  actually not that many years ago that I was 100% in the plumb around the Junkers Jumo pump and run it on an electric buried in the tank.     I've gotten religion in my old age and realize the only way those cars will every run right with the blower is to setup way it was originally.

 

You can still put the pump in the tank to help with starting,  but I would send my pump to Germany to have it rebuilt (I think Rolf does them?).  

540K-Junkers-Jumo-Fuel-Pump.jpg

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1 hour ago, George K said:

I have heard the same thing about Bugatti. Once you’ve gone through a eight cylinder MB and have a solid fuel system without the overly complicated radial piston fuel pump their like taking care of any truck. One thing for sure is don’t jump the blower in low gear. Know a guy who did and he split low gear in half. Tragic flaw that an internal key way lines up with the bottom of the outside gear tooth. A car is just a car.

 

The other thing  - I think the owners manual specifically tells you not to run the blower in 1st and maybe 2nd also.  Only in 3rd or 4th.

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The Minerva sport phaeton by Murphy appeared in the April 1930 issue of SOCIAL magazine, published in La Habana. Apparently the Castagna Mercedes-Benz was owned by Al Jolson.

 

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“This latest model, from one of the most important European factories - Belgium - is one of the highest exponents of modern automobile engineering. Its smooth suspension makes it one of the most comfortable in the world.  The almost absolute absence of engine noise has been the standard with which it has achieved worldwide popularity. The bodywork of this model is manufactured by Murphy, of California.
(Courtesy of “Minerva Autos Inc.”, N.Y.)”

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The caption for the Mercedes-Benz…


“This formidable German factory introduces us to its famous model "SS", of 250 HP with which they can obtain effortlessly 107 MPH. Bodied by the most notable of Italian designers : Castagna.  This extraordinary model is a cabriolet convertible, sport, for 4 passengers.  Its speed records on European tracks are currently the most remarkable.
(Courtesy of "Mercedes-Benz Cg." Inc., N.Y.)”

 

TG

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I think my statement still stands...............especially for the last 20 years...........I will admit to Craig being normal, as for AJ.....we don't need to explain it to our members here. I will vouch that both are gentlemen and fairly nice guys...........

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52 minutes ago, edinmass said:

 

I think my statement still stands...............especially for the last 20 years...........I will admit to Craig being normal, as for AJ.....we don't need to explain it to our members here. I will vouch that both are gentlemen and fairly nice guys...........

 

You are more comfortable with Duesenberg because you know them and the ecosystem that supports them.   A Model J is probably on par in complexity with a 540K,  but a little simpler because of the blower.    A sorted 540K will run forever too,  the problem is finding a sorted one.  

 

I will make the statement that a truly serious prewar collection needs a supercharged Mercedes:   K, S, SS, 380, 500K, 540K, or a 770K.    They are crazy cool cars.

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Posted (edited)

K,S,SS,SSK are my type of star cars.............the later ones......not so much.

 

So, my questions stands........name anyone who bought a 500/540 in the last 20 years that was a beginner. Especially a big boy toy.

Edited by edinmass (see edit history)
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21 minutes ago, edinmass said:

K,S,SS,SSK are my type of star cars.............the later ones......not so much.

 

So, my questions stands........name anyone who bought a 500/540 in the last 20 years that was a beginner. Especially a big boy toy.

Do you know anybody who was a beginner who bought a Duesenberg ?

 

Typically if you’re gonna drop seven figures on a collectible, you’re probably gonna want to know what you’re doing.

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4 hours ago, alsancle said:

 

The other thing  - I think the owners manual specifically tells you not to run the blower in 1st and maybe 2nd also.  Only in 3rd or 4th.

Strictly verboten! Ah who reads all that stuff. This guy knew better but a kid in a new Vette was revving at a stop light. I ran a dummy pump with an electric pump never had a problem. I wasn’t ever set back in the seat by the blower. Now a SSK is a horse of different color.

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5 minutes ago, George K said:

Strictly verboten! Ah who reads all that stuff. This guy knew better but a kid in a new Vette was revving at a stop light. I ran a dummy pump with an electric pump never had a problem. I wasn’t ever set back in the seat by the blower. Now a SSK is a horse of different color.

George,  the issue with the dummy pump is you don't get the extra fuel when the blower is engaged,  hence no extra 60HP.   I did the same thing for years until I got religion.  So I understand.

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That doesn’t make sense. S series have a  vacuum or pressure system with two carburetors and don’t need a pump like that thing. Any good pump can deliver more pressure than any needle can take. Maybe bigger fuel lines depending on what fuel you’re running.

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I never ran a factory fuel pump on an eight cylinder. Every one I had was frozen or just shot. Are you just dumping more fuel in somehow? Been over 35 years ago since I had one. The dummy I had was a solid replica pump which was just for looks and was a unrestricted pass through setup. Is there some circuitry I am unaware of. 

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42 minutes ago, George K said:

I never ran a factory fuel pump on an eight cylinder. Every one I had was frozen or just shot. Are you just dumping more fuel in somehow? Been over 35 years ago since I had one. The dummy I had was a solid replica pump which was just for looks and was a unrestricted pass through setup. Is there some circuitry I am unaware of. 

Eight cylinder cars, when the blower clutch is engaged, there’s a lever on the carburetor which opens up two more jets to let in more fuel.  The complicated fuel pump is part of a pressure system that forces more fuel from the tank to the carburetor when the blower is engaged. If you don’t get that extra gas, you don’t get your 60 hp boost. I do not know how the six cylinder cars work. It would be nice if someone wanted to give me one so I can figure it out. 

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Best I know with blown through carburetors the venting has to be closed with blower engaged. Otherwise the pressure overcomes the fuel supply and fuel sprays out. Closing off the natural aspirated carb is part of the foot operated blower. 

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6 hours ago, George K said:

Best I know with blown through carburetors the venting has to be closed with blower engaged. Otherwise the pressure overcomes the fuel supply and fuel sprays out. Closing off the natural aspirated carb is part of the foot operated blower. 

Seems like post war this sort of setup always has the carburetor in a box.  

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18 hours ago, alsancle said:

Do you know anybody who was a beginner who bought a Duesenberg ?

 

Typically if you’re gonna drop seven figures on a collectible, you’re probably gonna want to know what you’re doing.

You forget Ed has ALL of the J diagrams tattooed on the back of his eyelids. 
dave s 

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1 hour ago, George K said:

Not so with factory set ups.2A237C36-34B9-40A5-9E56-72ED37A52BCB.jpeg.b9e4e6855a73080bd41030163ce28a0a.jpegE43BF3F4-2BC8-4F97-A343-516FE6271448.jpeg.0d6fe8d24cca63839e603687a5af9dfb.jpegBFBD195D-FB36-4928-818C-6F0133F84BDF.jpeg.47a7a36fb3a269febe44a04472cafcd8.jpeg

I was thinking of the post war Paxton blower found on Studebaker and Shelby as an example. Where they would put the pressurized carburetor inside of a box, to keep the pressure in.

 

Only a problem with the superchargers that are blowing through the carburetor, not sucking from the carburetor which I think is more typical.

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Posted (edited)

 

I have never played around too much with early blowers.........Just the Stutz setup on the Lancefield Coupe and George's special he was playing around with. I can tell you a 540k or an S is no match for a Duesenberg out on the open road.........we walked a S on the M4 in England a few years ago..........with the J's taller gearing we were able to toy with them.......and just drove away. The speeds were how shaw we say..........just a tick over the limit. It was great fun. Here you can see the cars in the Cotswolds just before we ran them down the road........

IMG_1625.JPG

Edited by edinmass (see edit history)
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19 hours ago, alsancle said:

How many prewar cars are there that can keep up with a Dusenburg Model J?

 

Depends on the car and who is driving. Speed 6, Marmon 16, and probably a few others..........most can't spin up to speed as fast as the J. My Pierce 12 will easily run with a J, but won't come anywhere near on acceleration. 

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19 hours ago, alsancle said:

How many prewar cars are there that can keep up with a Dusenburg Model J?

A V8 Tatra 87 would have come close, I think.

 

Craig

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7 hours ago, 8E45E said:

A V8 Tatra 87 would have come close, I think.

 

Craig

85 horsepower and 3000 pounds..........wouldn't be in the running. 

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1 hour ago, edinmass said:

85 horsepower and 3000 pounds..........wouldn't be in the running. 

It's the aerodynamics that would be in Tatra's favor.

 

Craig

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Posted (edited)

I have had my hands on two of them. I did not have a chance to drive one. They are, to be polite, uninspired VW bugs. Quality is below par. Small displacement engine. Interesting and odd ball……yes. Would I own one, nope. I can’t imagine anyone placing them on a list of exceptional cars along with a blowen Mercedes or a J. I would describe the fit and finish on them as “very cheaply done”.  I can see why people would be intrigued by them. The few owners I know are crazy about them, and they fall into that strange category of an “engineer’s” car like an Invecta. 

Edited by edinmass (see edit history)
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  • 2 weeks later...

Twelve supercharged Mercedes up for auction in Monterey (so far - Bonham's hasn't released it's full catalog yet). It will be interesting to watch the one-off roadster #408383 in particular. It will be on the block for the 4th time since Gen Lyon sold it in 2011. The previous results adjusted for inflation were approximately $6m, $9.4m and $8m. The pre-sale estimate is $7-8m. With five Cab A's up for grabs, someone may have a rare opportunity to pick one up at a decent price (AJ). 😄

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On 7/14/2022 at 6:27 PM, 540K said:

Twelve supercharged Mercedes up for auction in Monterey (so far - Bonham's hasn't released it's full catalog yet). It will be interesting to watch the one-off roadster #408383 in particular. It will be on the block for the 4th time since Gen Lyon sold it in 2011. The previous results adjusted for inflation were approximately $6m, $9.4m and $8m. The pre-sale estimate is $7-8m. With five Cab A's up for grabs, someone may have a rare opportunity to pick one up at a decent price (AJ). 😄

 

Should be an interesting test of the market.  Most of them have sat, but all are good cars.   The King of Afghanistan Special Roadster is a very very rare opportunity at a covered spare car.

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  • 2 weeks later...
22 minutes ago, tilomagnet said:

Yes, most interesting auction since many years for MB. I think the estimate on the long tail covered spare wheel roadster is 11-12MM. 

 

 

If it was LHD I’m sure they would be looking for 15.

 

That is a really good car. And there are three or four real covered spare long tails?

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1 hour ago, alsancle said:

That is a really good car. And there are three or four real covered spare long tails?

Three in this body style, I believe, out of six to eight made. The former Warner car (black), the former Mann car (silver) and this one. All 540 K's. Neither of the two 500 K's with covered spare are known to survive, to my knowledge. Unknown how many decent-quality rebodied special roadsters have been made, but I would say fifteen to twenty.  I'm a little surprised we haven't seen any double-spare cars converted to covered spare. The roadster offered by Broad Arrow next month is also covered spare (408383) but it's not the same body style. The 2-tone paint of the one coming up for sale helped me decide not to 2-tone my car! Happy with my decision.

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  • 3 weeks later...
On 7/14/2022 at 5:27 PM, 540K said:

Twelve supercharged Mercedes up for auction in Monterey. It will be interesting to watch the one-off roadster #408383 in particular. It will be on the block for the 4th time since Gen. Lyon sold it in 2011. The previous results adjusted for inflation were approximately $6m, $9.4m and $8m. The pre-sale estimate is $7-8m. With five Cab A's up for grabs, someone may have a rare opportunity to pick one up at a decent price (AJ). 😄

Beautiful one-off fully restored roadster 408383 was a NO-SALE at alleged high bid of $6,250,000. That's basically the 2011 price when factoring inflation. Ugly duckling Lancefield and Normal Roadster were other two no-sales today.

And it looks like the days of $2.5M to $3M Cab A's are over, for now. Four of them went today for $1.1M to $1.875M. One more goes on Saturday. Ed may say they weren't bargains, but they were well under the 2008-2017 prices for Cab A's. 

Solid but unspectacular price on the Special Roadster. Buyer must be very pleased considering the ex-Mann roadster was $15,500,000 after inflation (2011 sale).

Here's the scorecard:

 

RM-Sotheby’s                                                                             estimate

113715 Cabriolet C                     $692,500                   $600-800k

123692 Normal Roadster       $1.25m hi bid                $1.4-1.8M

123696 Saoutchik Roadster    $1,710,000                   $1.75-2.25M

130857 Normal Roadster       $1,270,000                    $1.4-1.8M

130941 Cabriolet A                 $1,875,000                    $2-2.5M

154075 Special Roadster         $9,905,000                  $9-12M

169317 Lancefield                   $975k hi bid                  $1.25-1.75M

189391 Cabriolet A                 $1,132,500                     $1-1.25M

408371 Special Cab A             $1,765,000                   $1.75-2.5M

408388 Cabriolet A                 $1,435,000                   $1.4-1.8M

 

Gooding

154084 Special Cab A             $ Saturday                   $1.75-2M

 

Broad Arrow

408383 1-off Roadster             $6.25m hi bid              $7-8M

Edited by 540K
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I think you need to remember about all of the RM cars is that they had needs. 30 years of sitting in a collection.  You are looking at 2 to 400 K per car to sort out correctly. And the cabriolet a cars that were bringing 2,000,000+ were typically much nicer. 
 

The black five speed car was the best configuration, provenance, but needed the most work of all the cars. It was also a missing original fuel pump, and some other minor things under the hood.

 

The red right hand drive side mount car was originally configured with a desirable trunk spare. At some point sidemounts were added, but not correctly as you could not open the hoods without removing the side mount fall down. That car did not need a lot cosmetically, maybe 100 K and make it very presentable. However you had to deal with the fender issue, and then the usual mechanical shorting problems. 

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45 minutes ago, alsancle said:

I think you need to remember about all of the RM cars is that they had needs. 30 years of sitting in a collection.  You are looking at 2 to 400 K per car to sort out correctly. And the cabriolet a cars that were bringing 2,000,000+ were typically much nicer. 
 

The black five speed car was the best configuration, provenance, but needed the most work of all the cars. It was also a missing original fuel pump, and some other minor things under the hood.

 

The red right hand drive side mount car was originally configured with a desirable trunk spare. At some point sidemounts were added, but not correctly as you could not open the hoods without removing the side mount fall down. That car did not need a lot cosmetically, maybe 100 K and make it very presentable. However you had to deal with the fender issue, and then the usual mechanical shorting problems. 

I agree that condition is a critical assessment, but sales that were 5 to 12 years ago in the $2.5-$3M range would be $3-4M if they just kept up with inflation, without any "real" appreciation. Even discounting for condition, in a strong market the sales this week should have been more than 50% of the inflation-adjusted values of the more highly restored cars. $200-400K for additional restoration costs isn't bringing them up to $3-4M. I think the market peaked in 2015-2017, with lots of no-sales since, and some losses on cars bought just a few years earlier. Six of these eleven cars were no-sales on the block in the past six years! (3 that sold yesterday, and 3 that did not.)

 

Condition certainly differed significantly between the ex-Mann Special Roadster and the Jarvis roadster, but the greater originality of the latter was said to be a strength. (I disagree and still say patina is for quitters.) Even if the new owner restores it to the quality of Mann's car, the Jarvis roadster would be significantly behind the inflation-adjusted value of the Mann roadster.

 

I am very happy to see fewer no-sales than I would have predicted. Perhaps more sellers are not expecting 2016 values anymore. 

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