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American Rolls Royce (Ghost, PI & PII)


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Sadly, unless your intimately involved in the auction world, it’s hard to understand the game. If you had asked me, I would have never let you send your car to that sale............Venue, car, and economic reality come into play.......your car should have used a high end broker to sell it. Better control, less expense, and a much better outcome. 

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Peter.......it’s not your fault......I have seen how the auctions operate;  promise you everything, but in reality it’s double talk......and you end up with lots of additional expense, and poor results. Good Rolls Royce cars need people to represent them.....who understand them, and live for the brand. 

Edited by edinmass (see edit history)
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On 9/7/2020 at 4:09 PM, edinmass said:

Peter.......it’s not your fault......I have seen how the auctions operate;  promise you everything, but in reality it’s double talk......and you end up with lots of additional expense, and poor results. Good Rolls Royce cars need people to represent them.....who understand them, and live for the brand. 

Agreed.  I actually like the auction venue(s), but each sale and each company tends to have their "cup of tea" and Shawn screams at my right and left that it is just easier to not do the strategy and avoid, so when we put a car out for auction (which is rare), there are some serious discussions that go along with how it is to be handled.   Also, it turns out that a lot of people prefer not to bid at auction - they would rather deal with a car on their own terms via a dealer or ....  - You see a couple key dealers do very well picking cars up at auction and then reselling. 

 

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On 9/7/2020 at 3:13 PM, Peter Zobian said:

The Venue was awful, totally wrong for the car, and I was too stupid!

 

Too soon we get old, too late we get smart!

Actually, you did fine and no need to beat yourself up over it.  An auction is about as calculated a formula as they come.   Also, very few RR cars have done well value wise and for several years now.  The RR that was run through the Worldwide sale over the weekend also had an incredible amount of money dumped into it and stands a chance of being a looser for the owner in value not exceeding restoration costs.  Also, to get the "extra" you would have had considerable restoration work/pick-me-up-work to do-redo - that puts things more into a risky class as to ROI too.  

 

Back in maybe 2000, I was offered a RR Riviera Town Car for 50K firm and I passed - it traded hands 4 more times in the next 8 months and the last sale was like 220K (everyone owning did nothing to the car - not even wash it).   About the same time I passed on a 1955 Aston Martin 2/4 Coupe that was as nice original on the globe as they come, though leaked out its weep holes when running - 20K then and today ....  All lead to an Auburn - I am very happy with the choice/path.  

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  • 4 weeks later...
1 hour ago, alsancle said:

Back in this thread there was an unrestored PII LHD town car for 100K plus.   This car is  75K more (185K)  but you save 500k on the restoration.

 

https://lbilimited.com/offerings/1931-rolls-royce-phantom-ii-springfield-st-martin-by-brewster/

 

image.thumb.png.507ed403c0dbe4d52ba69ca786568f5a.png

This is basically a "Dover" style, but it a Town Car called a "Saint Martin" or "St. Martin" - it is basically the same body style (excepting town car feature) in sheet metal/aluminum that was on my RR PI (nice body style too). 

 

And AJS Series is nice as it is LHD and ....

 

Sidenote:  My guess is they are loosing money on this at 185K - very few RR cars ever reach this level of restoration.

 

The only fault I really saw is the rear seat clock is missing - hard to find as it is a Brewster/Tiffany part.  

 

And the original trunk probably was separated from the car as they tend to take up the whole depth of the luggage rack and this one leaves 6+ inches of the luggage rack unused space between body.   My car had a set of "quick disconnect" brackets that went on the underside of trunk, leveled everything, and then could be stored in the tool box when not in use (solved the problem of trunk rack being two different heights). 

 

Edited by John_Mereness (see edit history)
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48 minutes ago, John_Mereness said:

This is basically a "Dover" style, but it a Town Car called a "Saint Martin" or "St. Martin" - it is basically the same body style (excepting town car feature) in sheet metal/aluminum that was on my RR PI (nice body style too). 

 

And AJS Series is nice as it is LHD and ....

 

Sidenote:  My guess is they are loosing money on this at 185K - very few RR cars ever reach this level of restoration.

 

The only fault I really saw is the rear seat clock is missing - hard to find as it is a Brewster/Tiffany part.  

 

And the original trunk probably was separated from the car as they tend to take up the whole depth of the luggage rack and this one leaves 6+ inches of the luggage rack unused space between body.   My car had a set of "quick disconnect" brackets that went on the underside of trunk, leveled everything, and then could be stored in the tool box when not in use (solved the problem of trunk rack being two different heights). 

 

 

I'm still waiting for Ed's compare/contrast on driving a PI vs PII.

 

That car is begging for more integrated sloped trunk.

 

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1 minute ago, alsancle said:

 

I'm still waiting for Ed's compare/contrast on driving a PI vs PII.

 

That car is begging for more integrated sloped trunk.

 

They made the body style with a very close coupled trunk.  The problem with the trunk rack is that it is two different heights and if you did not know that there were adapter brackets (via their being missing) you would wonder what they were trying to do.   The one thing I did not like about my car was how far the trunk sat away from the body.  

 

29572882_10156454165462189_2440925655986479070_n.thumb.jpg.3d781dd1c7e394f5342724a35d7a931a.jpg

 

571216414_unnamed(1).jpg.5535be2bf3f697c89ad7baf7accce799.jpg

 

 

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1 hour ago, alsancle said:

Tires look a bit undersized also.

I had 7:00 x 20's and the Denman's were a larger tire than the Lester's it had in the sidmounts when I bought the car and had they been another 1/8 larger in height I would have had to elongate the mounting hole in the sidemount brackets to accommodate. 

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7 hours ago, alsancle said:

Back in this thread there was an unrestored PII LHD town car for 100K plus.   This car is  75K more (185K)  but you save 500k on the restoration.

 

https://lbilimited.com/offerings/1931-rolls-royce-phantom-ii-springfield-st-martin-by-brewster/

 

image.thumb.png.507ed403c0dbe4d52ba69ca786568f5a.png


 

You save 500k on the restoration????? You mean your only doing a half assed job and not doing the engine? 500k on a PII doesn’t go far...........trust me......not very far at all.

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On 10/5/2020 at 6:14 PM, edinmass said:


 

You save 500k on the restoration????? You mean your only doing a half assed job and not doing the engine? 500k on a PII doesn’t go far...........trust me......not very far at all.

A reproduction aluminum Cylinder head is going to cost over 20K by the time it hits your doorstep, ....  There are a whole bunch of people that have bright ideas of how to work around the issue too - problem is the ideas tend to in reality be pretty dimly lit. 

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  • 3 weeks later...

House cleaning of spares: RR PI Springfield:

 

I have a reproduction RR PI Springfield oil pump from Fiennes

https://www.ebay.com/itm/1925-1932-Rolls-Royce-Phantom-I-Springfield-Reproduction-Oil-Pump/173957049311 

 

I have an original radiator cap with what is believed to be a DESMO Scottie / Scotty Dog installed

https://www.ebay.com/itm/1920s-1930s-Rolls-Royce-Radiator-Mascot-Phantom-I-Springfield/174493618557

 

And, I probably have an oil drain plug for the Transmission.

 

66257246_10157639210607189_2884566182784925696_n.jpg

66258492_10157633385862189_8125238758573342720_n.jpg

65969192_10157633385077189_5551484309434531840_n.jpg

66143657_10157633384327189_4858054714144587776_n.jpg

66460423_10157633383482189_64502892593152000_n.jpg

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

RollsRoycePhantomI-Newmarket.thumb.jpg.9ecc5cca55808d90965d0f54a4d398d1.jpg

 

I'm strangely attracted to this late PI Newmarket with 1970s colors.

 

https://www.mecum.com/lots/LN1120-422537/1929-rolls-royce-phantom-i-convertible-sedan

 

 

Highlights

  • Built in the fall of 1928 at the Rolls-Royce plant in Springfield, Massachussets
  • Newmarket body built by Brewster of New York
  • Sold August 2, 1932 to Mrs. Ernest Cogdene of Englewood Cliffs, New Jersey who owned it until October 7, 1945
  • Ownership was transferred to C.H. Mahler New York City on that date and retained by him until December 27, 1951 when it was traded to Inskip Motors
  • Purchased by Milton Bradley Scott in December 1975
  • Mr. Scott retained Richard Kingston to restore car to concours condition
  • Two years invested in restoration
  • First place in the Rolls-Royce category of the 13th Annual Ambassador Invitational Concourse d'Elegance on June 10, 1979 and was invited to return to the Greater Los Angeles Show in 1980

RollsRoycePhantomI-Newmarket.jpg

RollsRoycePhantomI-Newmarket-Front.jpg

Edited by alsancle (see edit history)
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Headlights and spotlight are wrong, and the guy who installed that trunk needs a slap.......in the head......with a shovel. Colors are a shame.........but the under hood looks very nice. Just what you need AJ........a “special deal” on a P1.

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Wrong bumper too. I find plated wheels disconcerting. RR offered stainless steel wheels - I've only ever seen one set of them - but I don't think they ever offered plated wheels. Besides, it's too early for chrome. I have to wonder what was meant by "concours" condition...still, I like the Newmarket, especially the straight windshield version and it is an iron-head PI.

 

[edit] It could have gone back to Springfield to be updated...that would explain the bumpers.

The only untouched Newmarket I've ever worked on had a cloth interior.

 

 

Edited by JV Puleo (see edit history)
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17 hours ago, JV Puleo said:

Wrong bumper too. I find plated wheels disconcerting. RR offered stainless steel wheels - I've only ever seen one set of them - but I don't think they ever offered plated wheels. Besides, it's too early for chrome. I have to wonder what was meant by "concours" condition...still, I like the Newmarket, especially the straight windshield version and it is an iron-head PI.

 

[edit] It could have gone back to Springfield to be updated...that would explain the bumpers.

The only untouched Newmarket I've ever worked on had a cloth interior.

 

 

It is an updated car - the grill with the lower panel in it in splash apron is a 1931 thing, as are the fenders and the bumpers.  

 

The headlamps are incorrect though, the spot light is a whole bunch of too much, and it would make a huge difference to change the trunk to cream/tan to match the car.  

 

RR offered stainless wheels and I would like to see an original one to see what all was stainless and what was chromed (anyway, 99% of the cars had painted wires with a chrome snap ring). 

 

Sidenote:  Super clean and very correct under hood (at least on the passenger's side - no pictures of driver's side). 

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18 hours ago, edinmass said:

Headlights and spotlight are wrong, and the guy who installed that trunk needs a slap.......in the head......with a shovel. Colors are a shame.........but the under hood looks very nice. Just what you need AJ........a “special deal” on a P1.

 

It is starting to get cold here and I've been burning money in the fireplace to keep warm.  Figure maybe a Rolls would be a similar way to get rid of it?

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1 hour ago, John_Mereness said:

 

RR offered stainless wheels and I would like to see an original one to see what all was stainless and what was chromed (anyway, 99% of the cars had painted wires with a chrome snap ring). 

 

 

If I remember correctly, the entire wheel was stainless. It was an Avon... I went with a friend, who saw it advertised in the NYT, on a Sunday morning. It was in Connecticut, just about to NY. We were the first to get there and he bought it on the spot. One of the people who saw it after my friend bought it called and offered more for the wheels than the car had cost, along with a restored set of painted wheels. There were only 4 stainless wheels, the side mounts were missing.

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9 minutes ago, JV Puleo said:

 

If I remember correctly, the entire wheel was stainless. It was an Avon... I went with a friend, who saw it advertised in the NYT, on a Sunday morning. It was in Connecticut, just about to NY. We were the first to get there and he bought it on the spot. One of the people who saw it after my friend bought it called and offered more for the wheels than the car had cost, along with a restored set of painted wheels. There were only 4 stainless wheels, the side mounts were missing.

Probably the only interchange on wheels would be odd duck stuff and Cadillac using 20 inch wheels - a Duesenberg for example is a similar wheel, but in 19" 

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11 minutes ago, JV Puleo said:

 

If I remember correctly, the entire wheel was stainless. It was an Avon... I went with a friend, who saw it advertised in the NYT, on a Sunday morning. It was in Connecticut, just about to NY. We were the first to get there and he bought it on the spot. One of the people who saw it after my friend bought it called and offered more for the wheels than the car had cost, along with a restored set of painted wheels. There were only 4 stainless wheels, the side mounts were missing.

I believe Duesenberg spoke of "stainless wheels" too (but I could be wrong and they could have called them Chromium plated), but probably the only stainless was the spokes and rest was chrome. 

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My 1931 P2 Continental was originally fitted with Stainless steel (called Staybright at that time) wheels however the metal proved to be too brittle and the spokes fractured.  My car was returned to the factory approx. 12 months after it was built to have the wheels replaced with steel  wire wheels.

 

The car below is also a 1931 P2 with stainless wires and is pictured with its owner Sir Malcom Cambell of the Land and Water Speed record fame.

 

 

2011 ROLLS ROYCE CAMBELLS CAR.jpg smallest.jpg

Edited by DavidAU (see edit history)
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Hope they deliver it to a good shop for a color change, at least from the off-white to a dark gray, maroon or cordovan and a good set of black-wall tires.   One could live with the camel top until it needs replacement, to something more appropriate. 

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19 hours ago, alsancle said:

 

 

Wow.  Sold for $154,000!

 

That is very strong money for an older restoration Newmarket in debatable colors.  

 

Trying to figure out the market today is difficult at best..........can't explain that number. Only one thing is for certain. Every time I sell something the guy who shows up and over pays never comes my way........

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I have come to realize that there's no explanation for any of it. There's no science that can explain it, no amount of knowledge that can simplify it. You can watch and study and try to learn from previous experience, but ultimately none of it conforms to any rules and it certainly isn't predictable. It's all completely random. It is no easier to figure out why people buy the cars they do than it is to figure out why you like your favorite food.

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I think a large part of this particular car's success was that it was the only large, impressive (??!!) looking Classic at the auction. So, if there was anyone there looking to buy such a car, it was the only option on that day at that venue. If this car was at a typical RM or Bonham's auction that was loaded with big Classics, it would have laid a big egg. The seller took a gamble and it proved to be the right time and right place for this particular car. I tell people an auction is like a day at the races: You can predict an obvious winner, but sometimes the long shot wins.

 

There is an old phrase about "There's Always An A$$ for Every Seat". There was obviously someone last weekend in Las Vegas who loved this car because of its color and presentation. If it was the same color combination my boring old sedan they would not have even looked at it.

 

 

1927rr.jpg

Edited by motoringicons (see edit history)
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1 hour ago, motoringicons said:

I think a large part of this particular car's success was that it was the only large, impressive (??!!) looking Classic at the auction. So, if there was anyone there looking to buy such a car, it was the only option on that day at that venue. If this car was at a typical RM or Bonham's auction that was loaded with big Classics, it would have laid a big egg. The seller took a gamble and it proved to be the right time and right place for this particular car. I tell people an auction is like a day at the races: You can predict an obvious winner, but sometimes the long shot wins.

 

There is an old phrase about "There's Always An A$$ for Every Seat". There was obviously someone last weekend in Las Vegas who loved this car because of its color and presentation. If it was the same color combination my boring old sedan they would not have even looked at it.

 

But to the "knowledge" guys here your colors would have made it better.

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I really like "boring old sedans"!  Period colors make the car look authentic - trouble is most people don't have access to period color chips that are large enough to really get a understanding of what the color looks like. It also takes a "trained eye" to pick the colors ( in natural light not under fluorescent light bulbs) and vision what the car will look like when finished ( also coming into play is painted or plated wheels, side mounted or rear mounted spare, covers over the spare tires - cloth or painted, wheel discs over the wire wheels) most of the time to many factors for an owner to make a choice that he can live with before spending the $1,500 plus to buy paint, primer, etc.  I have been helping good friends for the past year pick colors for a sedan that is being restored by another friend for them. I am happy to do so because they both ( owner and restorer) want it to be "right" yet factor in the owners desire. I have about 300+ color chips of a decent size of the 1928-35 era - if you can't " see the car done" in your mind ( which is not easy for most people and wasn't even when new) you will be spending a lot of $ and not be happy.

Maybe I should start a thread on what color chips, choices, and units were made to display and help make these choices were available in the 1920-35 era. It would be better in print in a publication as it will take some space/several pages for commentary but I know our AACA magazine has no space for such a story. This is a story for /about pre WII era car interest and the post war cars are now in favor.

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I've noticed an interesting phenomenon in the hobby that I've often found difficult to articulate. Flashy and showy cars are what people seem to seek to own. But if you go to any show at any level, from a cars and coffee thing in a parking lot to Pebble Beach, it's the low-key and often all-original (but maybe scruffy) cars that attract most of the attention. Whether it's a low-key car like Guy's sedan up there or something that's a little scruffy like Ed's White, those cars seem to connect with people far, far more than gleaming perfection. They're relatable, I suppose.

 

I see it all the time in sales where a guy will complain about his current car being too nice to drive, but yet he looks at a car that is ideal for driving and bemoans that it isn't perfect. It's almost like there's a mental block that prevents a great many hobbyists for seeing anything but cosmetic perfection as their scale and unless they can see their reflection in the frame rails, they think the car is inferior. I have a guy trying to trade an admittedly nice frame-off restored 1969 Olds 442 for my 1970 Buick GS455 convertible that is merely a frame-on restoration (but an excellent one). The rub is that he also wants me to kick him $25,000 on top so that he can have the bottom of the Buick restored. His reason for not liking the Olds? The underside is too nice and he's afraid to drive it. The cognitive dissonance doesn't even register with him.

 

Embrace the low-key. Embrace battle scars. Embrace dirt and grease and oil. It's a machine and most people outside the hobby seem to appreciate cars that, you know, look like real cars instead fantasyland creations that should live inside a sealed box.

 

Would you trust a carpenter whose tools look like they've never been used? Personally, I'd much rather have the guy whose tools look like they've been on the job for decades.

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26 minutes ago, Matt Harwood said:

Would you trust a carpenter whose tools look like they've never been used? Personally, I'd much rather have the guy whose tools look like they've been on the job for decades.

 

You stated slightly differently one of the truest rules I have ever seen.   In beer league hockey,  the guy with the best equipment is always the worst player.

Edited by alsancle (see edit history)
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On 11/18/2020 at 9:55 AM, Matt Harwood said:

I've noticed an interesting phenomenon in the hobby that I've often found difficult to articulate. Flashy and showy cars are what people seem to seek to own. But if you go to any show at any level, from a cars and coffee thing in a parking lot to Pebble Beach, it's the low-key and often all-original (but maybe scruffy) cars that attract most of the attention.

Because they are more interesting generally speaking.  

 

By the way, ask someone who has ever organized a Concours about finding ACD cars to be on their show fireld.  They want restored, but turns out most of the cars are "well driven" as they are eveyone's favorite tour cars (aka most people find that frustrating matched to many of the really shiny cars often has plenty of authenticity flaws to them and ...). 

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Sidenote:  at our house the "restored" stuff does not last too long - I find better cars are usually upgraded originals or super nice originals.  I have no problem with restored cars, but most restored cars are not all that well restored from a driveability standard (usually takes me a year plus to work all the gremlins out). 

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On 11/23/2020 at 7:03 PM, John_Mereness said:

Because they are more interesting generally speaking.  

 

By the way, ask someone who has ever organized a Concours about finding ACD cars to be on their show fireld.  They want restored, but turns out most of the cars are "well driven" as they are eveyone's favorite tour cars (aka most people find that frustrating matched to many of the really shiny cars often has plenty of authenticity flaws to them and ...). 

 

This could be a great topic.   Which cars tend to be trailer queens vs which cars tend to be tour cars.   Probably some obvious reasons what a car lands in either category.   I'm thinking about 540K Mercedes which is almost always a trailer queen (I know of two instances of one touring in 25 years).

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11 minutes ago, alsancle said:

This advertisement is from 1936.  No way to tell if the wheels were a later addition,  although there was plenty of chrome plating going on by that time.

 

 

The_Miami_Herald_Sun__Jan_5__1936_.jpg

 

 

Just what one needs....a bargain Rolls Royce.

Edited by edinmass (see edit history)
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