JoyF

Scintilla Lights - Reproduction?

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I don't know about the parts themselves, but the box appears to me to be of contemporary Asian origin.

 

How about some information from you?  Where/when/how did you acquire the parts?  What was the "story" concerning the parts?

 

Cheers,

Grog

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They don't look reproduction to me, I'd say NOS if anything. I've got a 30's Scintilla catalogue at home, and I'll see if they're listed. Scintilla equipment was factory fitted to a few cars, most notably to some Bugatti and Minerva cars, although I don't know if they used this style of tail lamp.

Edited by Craig Gillingham (see edit history)

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On 1/27/2018 at 11:57 PM, capngrog said:

I don't know about the parts themselves, but the box appears to me to be of contemporary Asian origin.

 

How about some information from you?  Where/when/how did you acquire the parts?  What was the "story" concerning the parts?

 

Cheers,

Grog

I bought them at auction. They were advertised as Scintilla Bugatti lights. Don't know any story about them. 

 

As to whether the lenses are plastic or glass, I'm not sure. I'll have to have my dad look at them. Thanks.

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We can't really determine for sure whether the lenses are glass or plastic. I've been searching online a bit more and found one that was said to be new old stock that had a box just like the box I have. Also, it seems like the originals might have that number under "Swiss Made" while at least some of the repos do not. The back appears to be brown bakelite. 

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As long as we have a bit of a guessing game here , my uninformed opinion (FWIW) , is NOS. If you open one of the lights , try scratching the back of one of the lenses in an inconspicuous location. The point of a sharp implement will scratch any plastic, but no glass.   - Carl 

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If they are NOS they must have been kept in a dust free, humidity controlled environment and never handled, repeatedly moved, kicked, dropped, misplaced, mishandled, gotten wet or traded for beer. Nice find..............Bob

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We removed the two front screws and tried to open them to see if we could determine if the lenses were glass but couldn't get them to open. Any ideas? Don't want to damage them of course! Perhaps I could contact the auction where I bought them to see if they know any history on them. 

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16 hours ago, JoyF said:

We removed the two front screws and tried to open them to see if we could determine if the lenses were glass but couldn't get them to open. Any ideas? Don't want to damage them of course! Perhaps I could contact the auction where I bought them to see if they know any history on them. 

 

If you are having difficulty opening the light housing, I would not go any further but would check for glass vs. plastic as C Carl suggested in his Post #9 above.  I would use either a sharp sewing needle or a new #11 X-Acto blade (or equivalent) to attempt making a mark (as small as possible) at the very edge of the lens where it is mounted in the metal light housing.    The main thing is to maintain control of the point of the blade or needle so as not to scratch any more surface than necessary.  If you find it difficult to scratch the material, I would think it safe to assume that the material is glass.

 

I looked at "Google Images" where several photos of Scintilla SPN lights are shown.  Just go to "Google Images", enter "Scintilla SPN" or just follow this link:  https://www.google.com/search?hl=en&biw=1280&bih=900&tbm=isch&sa=1&ei=k61wWruRJ8nWzwK6xLaABQ&q=Scintilla+SPN&oq=Scintilla+SPN&gs_l=psy-ab.12...31386.33020.0.35874.2.2.0.0.0.0.148.292.0j2.2.0....0...1c.1.64.psy-ab..0.1.147...0i30k1.0.nOpNY5esJ9Q#imgrc=jq6THhgPepB-LM:&spf=1517333944487

 

A couple of boxes are shown and appear to be similar to yours, and the only difference is wear/tear and shade of brown color of the box itself.  Despite what I stated in my Post #2, I now believe that the boxes you have are correct.

 

Cheers,

Grog

 

 

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By all means stand down on the dismantling, as 'Grog recommend. There is another way , NON-INVASIVE , to tell glass from plastic. It is a bit more subjective , though. Take a butter knife , and lightly slap the dome of the lense with the flat of the blade. Glass will give a clearer , cleaner "ring" to the resulting sound than will plastic. Practice on enough known glass and plastic , and you will see what I mean. It is a bit subtle. Your find seems to be a notch or two above repop in quality. If it is repop , I would love to know who is doing this level of work. I would think anyone doing such a fine job would not want to counterfeit the box , but would proudly package their products with their own logo. Not to do so would be counterproductive.   - Carl 

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We tried the tapping thing but were still having trouble determining. May give it another shot. Thanks.

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I contacted the people at Les-Six-Troenes, and they informed me that the lights are 100% original with original box and plastic lenses. Apparently, some were made with plastic lenses as well.

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I happened to be watching a youtube video last night of a 1933 Buick that was built for the Queen of the Netherlands and I believe the rear lights were Scintilla. The videos user name is " Lou Costable "

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original to when?   Polyacrylate became commercially available in the late thirties.  All  plastic lenses I've seen are are post world war two ( polyacrylate replaced glass canopies on WWII planes as "new" technology).

 

Who are les Citroens as a source?

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Scintilla was a reasonably large company. I would expect they made products for a fairly wide range of applications. Yes definitely products for some very high end vehicles , but no doubt for some quite ordinary vehicles as well.  There are probably catalogs / application listings out there . But research is necessary.

 Lucas in England is in a similar position, RR, Bentley, Aston Martin along with Morris , Austin, and lightweight motor scooters. Most component company's don't limit themselves to high end sales only.

 

Greg in Canada

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Posted (edited)

Another trick to tell plastic from glass is to heat a pin or bent paper clip with a match. Touched to glass, it will have no effect, whereas it will melt into plastic. Obviously, you need to find a non-visible part to do this. This is used by antique dealers to tell ivory and bone from plastic, also.

 

Phil

Edited by MochetVelo (see edit history)
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