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what do I build?


mattg
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I just bought a 1930 Austin pickup truck that was originally a tourer. I have found out that after WWII this was common to have your car turned into a light commercial vehicle in order to receive a larger fuel ration and to save on taxes.

To receive the high ration of gas and escape the tax you could alter your sedan to be a woody (shooting brake) also since it was considered light commercial.

What should I restore this to?

If I rebuild it as a woody is that OK?

Is there a group for these cars in the AACA?

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If you wish to take it through the AACA show system you will need to restore it as it could have come from the factory based on the year, make and model that it started it's life as. :)

Regardless of what was commonly done, for whatever reasons, if changes were not factory authorized then points will be deducted. And the point deductions for non-authentic items is the total amount listed for each item. :eek:

Some items do have a limit as to the total number that can be taken off even if the number of items exceeds the points that can be taken. ie. Convertible top fasteners - no mater how many there are it is only a 1 point deduction not to exceed a total of 10 points.

If not, the sky (and your wallet) :D is the limit as to what you can do with it.

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If you wish to take it through the AACA show system you will need to restore it as it could have come from the factory based on the year, make and model that it started it's life as. :)

Susan;

Your point is absolutely correct and given my love for cars restored to strict original, I would advise him to do exactly that, however, with a car seen as rarely as this Austin, how many Judges could tell??? I have similar situations occur frequently with the Crosleys. In the last month I have seen 4 Crosley "pickups" for sale that were merely cut down station wagons. I have written each seller warning of what he had and that he risked legal action from a dissatisfied buyer who thought he was getting a true pickup. In 1 case the seller acknowledged what he had, in 2 cases I was told to mind my own business, and in the 4th I was told I didn't know what I was talking about and that the truck came from the factory that way!! In any case, a couple of them were done so well, it would take a true "expert" on that make and model to be able to discern the switch. How often do we have on our judging teams an expert on every make and model in the class?? Please, this is in no way a criticism of our judging system. I am merely saying with the thousands of makes and models out there, there is no way we could have judging teams with enough experts to cover every one. If a person was inclined to be dishonest and present a vehicle as an original and if it was well done and well presented, he would probably win an award. I personally know of one such car and it angers me every time I see it. It has already achieved senior status so I guess it will remain so. Perhaps some day I will have had all the fun I can stand showing cars and get back to judging. Maybe our paths will cross again.

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I also prefer to restore them to original which is why I am asking the question.

I do not believe I could find enough parts and information (on this side of the Atlantic) to bring the car back to it's original form. Also since these conversions are done not for ascetic preference of a past owner but from a historic necessity I am left wondering what would be a way to revive this vehicle without having people look at it and say (as I do to modified antiques) "That's a Shame" but to understand the time in history and appreciate it for that .

Would it be wrong to re-body this re-bodied pickup into a woody since the vehicle could have gone either way at the time to achieve the goal of the time? I don't know and that is what I would like to hear from fellow enthusiasts. I see it as, a properly restored car should last twice as long or more then it has already survived so it will outlast me and I don't want some owner 75 years from now looking to dig me up to find out why I did this to the car.

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mattg,

Picture a bare chassis rolling down a line, it comes to a "fork in the road" so to speak. If it is shunted left it becomes an A with all the things that make it an A, if it is shunted right it becomes a B, with all the things that make it a B. Both are correct for the year, make and model.

For the purposes of the AACA judging system you can turn it into whichever one you want to. If it could have come from the factory as a pick-up and you want it that way then pursue that avenue of putting together all the documentation you can find to support that. Same for if it could have come out as a woody.

It isn't your concern to worry if the judging team or Team Captain knows the car and every way it could have come from the factory. It is ONLY your concern to be able to provide proper documentation if there are questions.

It really is up to you to do the research to find whatever you can to support how you want the car to be.

If it is far too hard/or expensive to do that, then go for it and make it the car of your dreams and enjoy the heck out of it. And rest in peace with whichever choice you make. :)

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mattg;

I guess I misunderstood the question. If you are not going to take it back to one of the forms possible from the factory, then you can forget AACA judging as Susan has said. I thought you were looking at restoring a tourer as another form from that year and make. If you are going to a non original body altogether, then I don't think it will fit anywhere in AACA that I know of. If finances are a problem, you have 2 chioces. Do with it what you want and have fun or sell it and buy something that you can restore to original within your budget. Iam sure that we could put you in a restorable Crosley for what you spent on the Austin!!!

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I might argue with your theory as to why cars were converted into pickups. I would like to see documentation that many or any were actually converted because of taxes or gas rationing. The vast majority were converted because someone neded a cheap pickup. Many old cars saw that fate. I can see someone arguing in the future that original antique car engines were replaced with small block Chevy engines because the originals couldn't maintain adequate speed on the interstates. You may be indeed be right but I would like to see documentation that taxes were lower on a converted car or gas was easier to get.

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Don't know about the issue of vehicles being converted from cars to trucks for taxes and gas rationing.

But the Subaru "Brat" was outfitted with two seats in the bed of the them so that they could be inported as cars rather than trucks which brought down the cost to bring them in. :rolleyes::)

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mattg;

After looking at the web site you posted and the pictures of your vehicle, I think the most practical solution will hinge on whether you can find factory doccumentation of a vehicle exactly like you want to build. Be sure you have that doccumentation is in hand before spending the money on the build. If you can, and can build exactly that car, you are home free. Again, now that the situation is more clear, I see that there were factory vehicles built just as you want to build. I guess my only comment is that I don't think a quality wood body will be cheaper to build than a metal one. Good wood work is expensive.

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The one I have was brought over in 1986. Austin did not make a pickup at the time (that I know of) but I have found quite a few so similar in construction including the 1/4 window in the cab and the bed hinges, which are very good and not a backyard rig, that I believe one or a network of coach builders shared a plan and supplier.

The points and judging are not as important to me as doing the right thing for the vehicle.

I am a good restorer but also a good woodworker. I have worked on a 1947 Olds woody and was not impressed with the joinery of the wood and always wanted to build a woody of fine cabinetry quality. I did not know this Austin was not original when I bought it or exactly what year or type it was so the idea of the woody did not come up until I did this research.My problem is that even though this was not born a pickup it became one due to the times. I know if I make it a woody it would become a great looking car but I would be doing a third re-body and I am not sure if that's a sin!

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