businesscar1917

What does original mean?

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In todays world a person can have  "a one of a kind original"  built from many different parts. Original to me is how the vehicle came off the assembly line from the factory. In the teens people were cutting up touring bodies to make trucks and today its called original. Some factory's built a running frame with cowl you built the rest I would consider this as original if the rest of the vehicle was built in that time.  Maybe what it comes down to is that we all have "ORIGINAL VEHICLES"  that meets our needs. Original could be to special.

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From a judging standpoint,I would think that original would be just the way the unit left the factory floor. That being said,in some circles "field modifications" are allowed.

 

I once had a '31 Chevy fire engine that faithfully served a small community until 1977. Driving an open cab truck flat out to a rural chimney fire in January was a less than pleasant experience, especially with no windshield. At some point early in it's service life,a windshield from a '28 Chevy truck was installed.This required the placement of the spotlight, originally mounted on the right side of the dash, to a bracket behind the fuel tank. It all looked quite proper,and it won numerous trophies at some rather prestigious meets.

 

Cut up touring bodies were a common way to get new and extended life out of an obsolete vehicle, but I don't think that Duesenburg  made into a flatbed hay hauler would be well received at Pebble Beach. When I restored my '21 Chevy, I could have restored it back to it's touring configuration,but the pickup conversion,done about 1925,was just too cute. Judging isn't everything.

1921 Chevrolet Roadster Pickup 003.JPG

Slides from carousels 1970's 035.JPG

Edited by J.H.Boland (see edit history)
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What does it mean TODAY?  Absolutely nothing! 

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3 minutes ago, edinmass said:

What does it mean TODAY?  Absolutely nothing! 

 

Right up there with "numbers matching"... 🙄

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It could mean different things to many different people. I once knew a person who had a"mint" condition camaro. An argument started when I said new camaros did not come with unicorns painted on them like yours, therefore I wouldn't consider it"mint"

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Another word in the automobile lexicon, like "classic" that has absolutely no meaning at all.

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I would call a vehicle "original", if it's an unrestored, as it left the factory, vehicle.  If it has been restored, I would call it "restored to original condition". As the saying goes "it's only original once". It can be the finest, most expensive restoration, but it's not original it's restored!

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JV, so right you are. It drives me bonkers to hear people say that they own a "classic" '57 Chevrolet or a "classic" Model A Ford. 

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1 hour ago, 46 woodie said:

JV, so right you are. It drives me bonkers to hear people say that they own a "classic" '57 Chevrolet or a "classic" Model A Ford. 

Then do yourself a favor and do not watch the Barrett-Jackson Scottsdale auction this week on the Motor Trend channel.  Every car on the auction block is either original or Classic.

 

Peter J.

 

 

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Most every car on every show field is a phony and that includes my grand national and national award winning  "restorations"......bob

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Sometimes, it means whatever was on the car when the present owner bought it, .... because they believe what the seller said, until you can show them concrete proof otherwise.  

 

Paul

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Have you heard the latest news?!

They're going to take the Declaration Of Independence and restore it. 

 

Yep, turns out that some of the ink has faded and chipped, and the paper is mashed at the corners.

The plan is to strip the ink off, bleach the paper, and then press it flat.

The writing will be reapplied with carefully matching ink and rewritten in the same way it was done 'originally'.

Truly, it will be 'restored to like new'.

Sound absurd?  Of course.

 

Yet this is a completely accepted practice by vintage car owners.

Antiques Roadshow experts say "keep it original" (yes, they say the word 'Original').

American Pickers also say the same thing.

MANY people on this forum, and around this county and world, now say 'keep it original'.

 

Peoples' definition of 'ORIGINAL' can vary greatly, but it would be ridiculous to get into an argument of semantics.

In your hearts, you already know what an 'original' car is.  At least for most of us anyway.

 

 

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The OP asked almost what I was thinking. 

 

Another question compares an assembled car to a built car. I assume Ford (after the Rouge Plant) was the first to build a car.  All the rest and all cars today are assembled??  Does anybody build a car with their own components.

 

What is original.  When I worked for Penner Dodge in Winnipeg (1963) we had a new  Dodge come off the train, on to a transport and off on our lot.  There were picture taken and I sure wish I had them today. V8 with two different makes of spark plugs in three heat ranges.  If that specific car were restored today it would have to have the same combination of plugs to be "restored to original" even though that may have been the only one of it kind.

 

How do any of us know (for sure, without any reasonable doubt) what was original eighty, ninety or one hundred years ago for any specific car,

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PFitz says "Sometimes, it means whatever was on the car when the present owner bought it, .... because they believe what the seller said, until you can show them concrete proof otherwise.  

 

And many times, even faced with concrete proof, several experts in full agreement, and obvious HUGE flaws in their logic? They still won't believe you.  Yep. Been there, done that. Too many times.

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I do believe you're all correct I own a 1917 Dodge Brothers Business Car and have been told Dodge didn't make business cars for the public until late 1917 or its a military vehicle Dodge started production for the Army in April 1917 with running frames and cowls and a few business cars used as ambulances in WW1. The original color is black not brownish green the Army color. Dodges first business cars had touring car frames (this I have) with business car bodies on the frames. My frame number 159389 shows production date June 2 1917 the cab number 38843 early cab number, I also know the history to about 1920 no changes were ever made to this vehicle. So this vehicle will be  "restored close to original condition as possible" since with no records I don't know what original condition is. This business car worked on a dairy farm in southern Oregon delivering milk the owner put a cut out valve before the muffler for more power climbing the mountains, people tell me to leave it off to be original but then other people say tell the history of it leave the cut out valve on. The title will change when I transfer it from Oregon to South Carolina now I'll have a  restored title not close to original  WOW.   I'll be 70 this year to bad I couldn't get restored to original condition. Thanks for the comments.  

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Too many people confuse "Original" with "Authentic." Original means it has never been altered. You cannot restore a car (or anything else for that matter) to "original."

 

Also, the phrase, "original as it left the factory" is being quite loose with what that terminology. Very few cars fall into that category, especially prewar cars (pre WWII). Cars did not leave the factory covered with surface rust, faded paint, etc.

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10 hours ago, Real Steel said:

Have you heard the latest news?!

They're going to take the Declaration Of Independence and restore it.

 

 

Is this FaceBook news?

 

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17 minutes ago, West Peterson said:

 

Is this FaceBook news?

 

  No, I heard it on FOX network so it must be true. 🙄

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I prefer "all original" to mean as it left the dealership on day one, not  just the factory.  By the late 20's early 30's, there are many dealership installed extras that might have been added at the first owner's request before taking delivery of a new car.  Spare tire covers, accessory trunks, lap robes, outside rearview mirrors, trim items, twin horns, etc..

 

Paul

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Great topic and conversation.  Many do get confused with the term of original, meaning it is as it was as it left the dealer versus restoring a car to original appearance versus a resto mod or hot rod.  I wish there was a 'standard' definition of this in the community.  

 

The other way I look at it is that the car is the 'original' paint, body, interior, and accessories as it left the dealer at original purchase.  Also you need to take it to the next level such as there are many things on a car that are expected to be changed to drive such as tires, fluids, belts, etc for usual maintenance.    

 

From a public historic agency perspective here is a good example for reference.  I recently acquired a 1925 Cole Brouette with a body by Willoughby.  It was the personal chauffer driven car for Mrs. JJ Cole and she used it until the early 30's.  It was then put in the basement of the Cole Factory building and the family maintained it and used it occasionally after that.  The family owned the factory building until the 80's and kept it there and then moved it to the Cole mansion after that.  It left the Cole family in 2007 to private ownership.  The national historic register added the Cole mansion and the 1925 Cole Brouette to the Register in 1997 and their historians reviewed the house and the car and wrote up the history.  The car is predominately original with interior, body, and paint original except for cosmetic updates to the paint over the years and then the park service notates that other things have been replaced for maintenance reasons.  That is how they define originality.  

 

Now I am the next conserver of this car and my intent is to preserve it as original as possible and maintain it to keep it functioning and in the public eye.  

ColeToday.thumb.JPG.7637daa59471370c6d969d4b032d952f.JPG1506853450_ColeatColeMansion.thumb.jpg.bca78ae2aa1603b13e41c3ce55af9f85.jpgscan0013.thumb.jpg.c2f3d8c610b70bca795e97b1423fe831.jpg

 

Edited by kfle (see edit history)
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Many Ford cars left the factory in pieces and packed in railroad cars.  Many manufacturers the spare rims had no tires when leaving the factory.

Original might be when it was first put into service.

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Ever since the operation I am not original any more.

I came with a cord.

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There are several definitions that I use in the antique car hobby:

 

1)  Original - unrestored, unaltered, "unrefreshed" etc. (except for general maintnenace items) as it left the factory - paint, interior, engine bay, etc. are just like it left factory

2)  Refreshed - certain areas have been restored but the car is not a truly restored car - maybe fresh paint job and new upholstery but not a true restoration

3)  Restored to original - full restoration (off frame, ground up) to way it left the factory

4) Modified - anything else

 

Thats just my thoughts

 

Bob

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1 hour ago, Bob Hill said:

There are several definitions that I use in the antique car hobby:

 

1)  Original - unrestored, unaltered, "unrefreshed" etc. (except for general maintnenace items) as it left the factory - paint, interior, engine bay, etc. are just like it left factory

2)  Refreshed - certain areas have been restored but the car is not a truly restored car - maybe fresh paint job and new upholstery but not a true restoration

3)  Restored to original - full restoration (off frame, ground up) to way it left the factory

4) Modified - anything else

 

Thats just my thoughts

 

Bob

 

This is a good summary.

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