Jump to content

1914 Stude roadster/speedster on ebay


Dwight Romberger
 Share

Recommended Posts

$13k and climbing...looks like it will be finding a new home. Almost too nice to cut up for a speedster though, that one should get the full resto.... which would still be in the running for a stock speedster anyway. Doesn't really say where it's located, I'm assuming NY by the comments on shipping.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I was surprised at how much it brought. I wonder if the new owner realizes it wasn't built that way. If not, they are in for a rude awakening. It is a great example of a real home-built "speedster" probably assembled in the late teens. We forget that cars depreciated about 50% per year so if the Studebaker cost $1200 in 1914, it may have been worth about $75 in 1918. By 1920 it was effectively worthless. (Figures taken from "America Adopts the Automobile which I believe was a Doctoral Dissertation... it has lots of interesting statistics and analysis and nothing on the technical aspects of automobiles). The speedster-building fashion is easy to understand when older cars with very little use could be had for a fraction of the price of a new car but looked hopelessly obsolete. Fashion was as important (if not more important) then than it is now. In fact, there was no popular interest in simply "old" things and collecting was confined to antiques which had to be really old... which is why the official definition of the word is 100 years.

Edited by JV Puleo (see edit history)
Link to comment
Share on other sites

As the buyer I do know exactly what I bought and very happy with it and would be interested in more period built speedsters not modern made up ones. I would also like some help from some of the club to locate two 1913 cowl lights a correct tail light and amp gauge .also a tool box lid from a 1913 or the whole box. Thanks for your help . Kellykinzle@comcast.net

I was surprised at how much it brought. I wonder if the new owner realizes it wasn't built that way. If not, they are in for a rude awakening. It is a great example of a real home-built "speedster" probably assembled in the late teens. We forget that cars depreciated about 50% per year so if the Studebaker cost $1200 in 1914, it may have been worth about $75 in 1918. By 1920 it was effectively worthless. (Figures taken from "America Adopts the Automobile which I believe was a Doctoral Dissertation... it has lots of interesting statistics and analysis and nothing on the technical aspects of automobiles). The speedster-building fashion is easy to understand when older cars with very little use could be had for a fraction of the price of a new car but looked hopelessly obsolete. Fashion was as important (if not more important) then than it is now. In fact, there was no popular interest in simply "old" things and collecting was confined to antiques which had to be really old... which is why the official definition of the word is 100 years.
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Kelly K,

I hope you do know what you bought! As a long-time horseless carriage AND speedster guy, I like it. I must also say that I was shocked at how much it went for. I would have never expected that.

An important point. Speedsters and home-built race cars, are as much a part of automobile history as any Packard or Rolls Royce. Sadly, in the early decades of the antique automobile hobby ('40s, '50s, & '60s), they were not considered to be of any value at all. Although many of the "famous" racing cars were saved (like Old 16), most lesser race cars and speedsters were parted out to help restore "real" antique automobiles. Sadly, a lot of history was lost, and most speedsters have no traceable provenance.

Along with several "real" model Ts and era non-Fords, I have so far restored six T speedster/racers from remnants from original cars. None of mine were intact cars when I got them, and none of them can be claimed as "true surviving originals". I do usually refer to them as "restored from the remains of an original", but when pressed will usually tell what parts are or are not from the "original" car.

I have hundreds of copies of original photographs of speedsters and home-built racing cars. Most of the original pieces I have picked up over the years had absolutely no known history attached to them. I know they are from an original speedster, because of the way they were modified. I put them with other original era parts, and fill in the missing pieces as best I can. But I cannot tie any photo I have to any one surviving car.

Without any "known" history, they are what they are. A representation of a special era in automotive history, as real as any other common antique car from that era without any real provenance. I enjoy them.

What you have, may or may not have any "real" provenance either. I hope it does, or that you can find it. But whether you find it or not. What you have is a more "real", more "original", speedster, than probably more than 95 percent of all the "speedsters" on the road today. In my 45+ years in this hobby, I have only seen a dozen or less true intact original speedsters in person.

I hope you treat this car as the special car it is. Restore or not, is your choice. But I would hope you keep it as close to how it was way back when (maybe lose the windshield, the description indicated that it may not be that early to the car anyhow).

My opinion;

My preference is that speedsters should be restored as close to how they were done "back in their day" as is reasonable. Use the type of materials and methods used in the day. Do the kind of modifications that they used to do if you need to replace a missing piece. Make it look like it could have been yanked out of one of those hundreds of original photographs. Make it look so that you could take your own black and white photograph and not be able to tell it from an original.

Okay. Be reasonable. You will use modern copy tires, modern paints (unless you mix your own from formulas), and new wood and upholstery materials. And you may or may not make it a finer finish than most were originally. But make it like it really could have been "back in its day".

As I said. That price surprised me. But I hope you can treat the car the way it, and your money, deserve. It has a lot of potential.

Drive carefully, and enjoy, W2

Link to comment
Share on other sites

So lets look at this objectively. There were x number of any cars built in 1914. Out of the total built, what percentage would have been rodded back in the day, or in this case, perhaps prior to 1930? We are probably talking less than 2 % of the total numbers. Fords would be first due to the sales and availability, but any other makes would be a way down the list. If we look at the numbers of these modified cars available versus the demand, it makes sense that the value should be higher than the typical 1914 Stude, since so few were built into speedsters. While it seems that the comparative value is high, how long are you going to look for another survivor speedster that was built back in the day?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Value (price is probably a better word), is determined by demand, not how rare something is, although that can enter into the equation. The highest price is usually attached to the least common version of something commonplace, hence the sort of prices attached to '32 Fords. No matter how rare the chassis is, the market values intact examples over modified ones... and the AACA probably has a lot to do with the, to my mind exaggerated, emphasis on "factory new". I think an interesting and important aspect of automotive history is thus completely ignored. After all, people did do things with their car other than bring it home and polish it.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Way to go Kelly!

Excellent example of period speedster.

All of our speedsters have been modified or they wouldn't be speedsters!

Yes, I know there were a small handful cars that were factory built and called speedsters. But, to the best of my knowledge they were generally factory modified versions of standard models.

I predict you will have success finding the parts you need. There seem to be alot more brass era parts around than brass cars that need them.

Ebay on the worldwide setting is good. I would also do what whtbaron suggested and use the buy/sell forum.

I would also put pictures on the Studebaker/Erskin forum and join any early Stude clubs.

Please keep us appraised of your progress and Congratulations'

Dwight

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Wow there is a lot of discussion on this car. First, price/value I didn't buy it with anybody else in mind. Try to replace it at any price. Second just because you can make one has anything to do with the original. As for condition far to many original cars have been destroyed by over eager people trying to win A badge, only to find out after they put all there screws and cotter pins in the same direction and there ars thousands just like it ,you can't make an original. Patina is hard to duplicate ,although it has been done just to fool some people that can't tell the difference .As for the car it will be lightly cleaned of dirt some of the canvas needs stableized ,tank cleaned , horn, and other small things. It will remain as it was built with a hundred years fo history not my interpitation of what it could be. The car has been in the family since new, it was stored in a carriage shed since before 1940 and buried under piles of wood until we picked it up. The body is made by a coach/wagon maker not a backyard job. Looking at construction and material it pre dates 1920. The fenders are an elaborate metal framework covered with painted canvas. A lot harder to make than just metal, they are tucked in between the frame and body. I could use some help in figuring out some brackets that hold the lights on the cowl. When we remover the windshield there were four screw holes very close together on the edge of the cowl about half way up the sides and a wire with a plug end coming out through the the edge just below the screw holes. I am no Studebaker expert and don't have the knowledge some of you do . Thanks my email is kellykinzle@comcast.net

Link to comment
Share on other sites

As for condition far to many original cars have been destroyed by over eager people trying to win A badge, only to find out after they put all there screws and cotter pins in the same direction and there are thousands just like it ,you can't make an original. Patina is hard to duplicate ,although it has been done just to fool some people that can't tell the difference .As for the car it will be lightly cleaned of dirt some of the canvas needs stabilized ,tank cleaned , horn, and other small things. It will remain as it was built ...

Good. I applaud this attitude. You are absolutely right about far too many original cars having been obliterated in the pursuit of trophies.

I'd love to see some photos...jvp4570@cox.net

Joe Puleo

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Kelly K,

It sounds to me as though you have the right idea and attitude! It also sounds as though the car has the right new home. I have restored about ten cars in my 45 years in the hobby. None of them even remotely was usable in the condition I got them. I often use the word resurrection instead of restoration in reference to most of the cars I have "restored". I have argued for many years that if an antique automobile is in even decent condition, it should be preserved, not restored. There absolutely is a point where cars should be restored. They cannot be really experienced or seen otherwise. I have been pleased the past decade or so, to see more cars preserved. I even know of a few people preserving cars that I would have said should be restored. That also pleases me. I like to see other people do better than I would if I were in their shoes. My ego does not bruise that easily.

I am really impressed by your 1914 Studebaker speedster. I totally agree (from the photos) that it is probably from before 1920. If it were mine (no chance for that, my family pretty much destroyed me financially), I would definitely clean it up, make it safe enough to drive, and keep it as close to original as is reasonable to do.

Another suggestion. Join the Antique Studebaker Club. They are for pre-WWII Studebakers and are very strong on the pre-'20 Studebaker stuff. I belonged to it for years while I had a 1915/16 ED6 touring car. For the several years I got their magazine, they published several great photos of early Studebaker speedsters as well as EMF and Flanders racing cars. Since I was forced to sell my car, my magazines got buried where I may find some of them some day.

Through the club you may be able to find copies of some of those pictures which could be wonderful for research and display purposes. You may also want to contact and keep in touch with me personally in case I find some good stuff for you amongst the hundreds of speedster photos I have and can find.

Also, I sold my ED6 touring to a long-time good close friend who has acquired a bit more in early Studebakers since and is connected to some of the early Studebaker community out here. He is a great person who frankly has taken much better care of the car than I could have. That makes the hurt of having sold it a little easier to take.

Again, CONGRATULATIONS! You may have one of the best of the small number of truly original preserved early (pre1920) speedsters in the USA, maybe the world.

Anybody with more money than brains can come up with a old industrial engine and some chassis parts, craft a body that doesn't look right, use the wrong kind of wheels and call it any year they feel like calling it.

There are only so many true originals left in the world. That is it. No more. You got what may be one of the best. Appreciate it. Preserve it! Show it and share it. Take it on tours with the HCCA and the Studebaker meets.

Drive carefully, and enjoy, W2

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Kelly K,

You have an interesting project -piece of history here! We have a '13 SA roadster with about 7000 original unrestored miles on it. She is a beautiful little car on the short wheelbase (108") like yours. I got a lot of 1913 literature with the car but do not know how much carries over to 1914. I believe the SC was the next generation of the small WB as I have never seen an SB written about. The SA was the smallest line in '13 with a 25 HP, 200ci 4 cylinder attached to a transaxle at the rear with three speeds forward. It is the only series in '13 with acetylene headlamps and kerosene cowl and tail lamps. It has no generator and runs a Splitdorf low tension mag ignition. All the other series in '13 had electric lights, and generator. I have read that in 1914 they switched all series to electric lighting so you coupling that with what you observed on your cowl I would guess you are probably looking for electric cowl lights.

Keep it original to the state you bought, clean it up and run it just like they intended/ did in the teens! It is a unique piece to be the caretaker of and enjoy.

Merry Christmas, looks like Santa came early to your house,

Link to comment
Share on other sites

To post pics here.... Under the "reply to thread" box, you hit "go advanced" instead of the quick reply option. This will extend the window to include a bunch of smiley faced icons and a new window called "Miscellaneous Options". Under attachments, hit the "Manage Attachments" button. This will open a pop up window that will list any pictures you have added to this site. If you need to add new pics, hit the "Select Files" button and it will give you access to your computer files. Assuming the pics you want are in "My Pictures" files, go to Libraries, My Pictures and then select the files you want. Once you've selected, then hit "Upload Files", and once that's completed, hit the "Insert Inline" button, let it load and then "Complete". I have to say this site is a little more complicated than most. Pay attention to the maximum file size and accepted file types, as it may not accept the ones directly off your camera. I use a free program like Picassa to downsize the files and convert them to jpg's before I load them into this site. If that still doesn't work, email me some ( whtbaron@yahoo.com ) and I'll post them for you.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 1 year later...

Kelly K,</SPAN>

Your rebodied 1914 Studebaker speedster is a real beauty! I saw your photos on the AACA Notable Speedsters thread:

http://forums.aaca.org/f230/notable-speedsters-377460-2.html</SPAN>

Here is a thought: I wonder if the body and metal work on your rebodied 1914 Studebaker speedster is directly related to, or perhaps even the body of one of, the extremely rare Dormandy cars of 1903-1905, of which only four were ever built?

</SPAN></SPAN>

As you probably know, Troy Carriage Works, Troy, NY, was founded in 1882 by James Know Polk Pine, who was also the president of the very successful United Shirt and Collar Company, also of Troy, NY. They built some car bodies, as well as sleighs, etc.</SPAN>

Troy Carriage Works, Troy, NY, built the bodies for all four of James K. P. Pine’s Dormandy cars of 1903-1905, which were designed by his employee Gary Dormandy for Pine and his family. The body types for these four cars were runabout, a coupe, and a seven-seat touring car. All four cars were painted red! (I believe your Studebaker speedster is also painted red.) Only four Dormandy cars were ever built. One is believed to be in a museum in California, but no one has managed to find it.</SPAN></SPAN>

There is a very brief 2002 thread on AACA Forums concerning Dormandy cars started by his great grandson. See:

http://forums.aaca.org/f119/dormandy-automobile-155595.html</SPAN></SPAN>

Troy Carriage Works, Troy, NY, advertised in the Troy Times newspaper on January 3, 1919 offering “winter tops for Ford roadsters and touring cars” and also winter tops for Buick cars. See web page:</SPAN>

http://fultonhistory.com/Newspaper%2018/Troy%20NY%20Daily%20Times/Troy%20NY%20Daily%20Times%201919/Troy%20NY%20Daily%20Times%201919%20-%200025.pdf</SPAN>

James Know Polk Pine</SPAN></SPAN> passed away on September 17, 1919. For his biography, see:

http://www.rootsweb.ancestry.com/~nyrensse/bio283.htm

Maybe you could put the photos of your 1914 Studebaker speedster that are now on the AACA Notable Speedsters thread onto this thread also, so someone with knowledge of the four Dormandy cars could make a comparison?</SPAN>

Cheers, James

</SPAN>

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
 Share

×
×
  • Create New...