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The phone rang... and then the next car adventure starts


edinmass

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It was a hard vehicle to guess.....as 99 percent of the people associate the White Motor Car with steam. This was the last year of production for cars. From what I have found, there are only two or three cars left with this power plant. White was a very prolific builder from 1907-1910, and then production quickly fell when they went to gas engines.

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There is a gas White here in RI , or was a few years ago, but  I seem to remember it had a 3-speed progressive transmission. Manny Souza had a gas White in his storage area about 40 years ago...I think that one was about 1910-1911 I would have liked to buy it but it was way beyond my means) and I remember one outside rotting under some trees on the Joslyn Farm in Exeter RI. That might have been a truck or perhaps a car cut down into a truck. I think there was one or two at Bills Auto Parts in the 70s - again in such deteriorated condition that it wasn't always easy to tell what they had begun as. Some place around here I have a dash mounted, cast aluminum oil reservoir from one of those.  I can't say I've ever seen a big White gas car.

Edited by JV Puleo (see edit history)
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I was just about to say a 1917 White 7 passenger model GL!  Right like I know what the heck that is and have seen one in my life!  
Congratulations Ed it looks like a great project. 
Have fun and I’ll bet the kids will love it. 
dave s 

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Incredible find!

Congrats and thanks for sharing the journey as well as your plans for the kids, they'll never forget what they are about to encounter.

 

I'd be curious to know how many others were thrown off by the suicided front doors clue (myself included)...

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It would be interesting to know who else had guessed it... A very unusual vehicle that I wasn’t sure if it was a T head engine, my question earlier was to determine if it was a White, they switched to truck production for the war and never produced an AUTOMOBILE again. I remember seeing one in the 70’s and it would have been in New England so maybe RI... not really sure now. 
 

You really found a true gem in n the rough Ed!

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It’s a Zenith, it is supposed to have a factory White unit. Only incorrect thing I know about it, besides the missing clock.

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Ok it’s 3:50 the astronauts have landed is the car running yet! 
 

We want to see it going down the road! 
it really does look BIG. It’s going to be a good looking car when you get finished with it. I want to be a kid again. 
dave s 

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Plan is to clean it up and drive it as is. Maybe a new top.....maybe. Things will clean with lots of time and labor. Maybe I’ll take it to Hershey in the HPOV class. It would be fun to give rides at the fall meet in the car.

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1 minute ago, motoringicons said:

Congrats on a great find. I love high performance, nickel-era cars and this White certainly fits that description. It will be a locomotive when it is up and running. 


 

It’s a Dave find.......and a handoff to me. Dave and I have helped each out a bunch of times over the years. Karma for car guys.....I’m sure we will have a bunch of laughs and fun with this car and talking BS at the meets and shows for years to come. 

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14 minutes ago, motoringicons said:

Congrats on a great find. I love high performance, nickel-era cars and this White certainly fits that description. It will be a locomotive when it is up and running. 


 

Im curious as to it’s total performance.......with the four speed,  Is one a hill climber/stump puller? It says 3rd is direct.........I have never seen an over drive this early.......any ideas?

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1 hour ago, JV Puleo said:

I think there was one or two at Bills Auto Parts in the 70s - again in such deteriorated condition that it wasn't always easy to tell what they had begun as.

I wish I had taken more photos there, but I can't even find the few that I did take.  I was amazed at the huge WB cars from the latest 20s to early 30s but  I didn't know what they were..... except a huge late 20s Chrysler that I took sidemount locks from.

 

...one vehicle was so long that I used the only good running board moulding from one side, to make both sides for a 30 Desoto roadster.  Maybe it was a hearse, I can't recall.  Speaking of which, Bill had saved indoors, an early white painted T model Ford children's hearse.  :(

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The four vs six was something I couldn’t mention or it would have made it too easy. As a kid in the late 60’s and early 70’s we did lots of steam tours. We had a few White steamers on tour but most were Stanley’s . I have seen two earlier White gas cars, but they were rather small for my taste. This particular car is very large......and big stuff appeals to me. The engine is 5.4 liters so while a decent size, it isn’t huge. Supposedly the dual valve should put the horsepower to 50. It’s going to take a drive to really understand what I have got. I’m optimistic that it’s going to be a better runner than most people think. With the other two in museums, no one is going to park next to me with an identical car.........appeals to my irrational collector impulses. No distributor.......magneto only. It has 11k on the clock, And has always been indoors from what we understand. It should clean up and run without too much effort. Last ran in 1953/54, and from what I can figure I will be the fourth owner. The first two were good for almost 70 years. It’s an eclectic car..........but high quality. 

Edited by edinmass (see edit history)
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Thanks for including us in this discovery, it was fun!  Glad you've got it, can't wait to see more of the details as the experience unfolds.

 

Interesting car, certain rare, even when new.  Small wonder White decided to concentrate on trucks thereafter considering what other choices were available to the fellow with $4,600 for a new car:  Pretty heady competition.

Pierce-Arrow Model 38, just have to kick in a couple hundred more.

Packard Twin-Six: any 2-25, most 2-35 except the limousine

Locomobile Model 38 touring 

Lozier Model 82 limousine

McFarlan, any Type 127, some Type 135

Cunningham Series V, most styles except formal

 (Two) Cadillac V8 touring cars!

(Two) Peerless (V8) Model 56 touring cars and change left over for a Model T Ford!

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1 hour ago, edinmass said:

It was a hard vehicle to guess.....as 99 percent of the people associate the White Motor Car with steam. This was the last year of production for cars. From what I have found, there are only two or three cars left with this power plant. White was a very prolific builder from 1907-1910, and then production quickly fell when they went to gas engines.

 

I knew White built gas cars hadn't realised they built them as late as 1917. 

 

Are there any records to suggest how many they built in those later years?

 

I see the specs in another of your photos - a quick calculation gives 407.5 cubic inches for the engine. Even bigger than the similar spec Stutz.

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Here is a 1915 or 1916 White motorhome that used to be at Pioneer Auto Show and Museum in Murdo, South Dakota(it's not on the current inventory). Y'all ought to buy one to go with the other(if it were still there). I took the pic in 2012 and remember it had a four. It would be funny if it was the same engine. 

Good luck with the 1917..........it  does seem like it has a lot of potential!

image00000039.jpeg

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2 hours ago, edinmass said:

That’s all the photos I received to make my decision. 

Yeah, but I'd seen the car and told you that it was sound!  I thought it was a model GM.

 

As I've told Ed, the engine is interesting, but it's somewhat boring to look at for a T-head.  The intake and exhaust is cast into the block.  The fellow also had a 1910 White, and it was the same way, just a big block of metal.  Not a big deal, but interesting fact.

 

It's a big, big car, 138 inch wheelbase, for 1917 that was a big'un.

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My understanding from the owner, who researched it, was that they built 70 cars in 1917.  I believe they built a handful in 1918, but don't think any have survived.  

 

OK Ed, get it running and reliable, then leave it with me for a new top.  Shouldn't take me more than 18 months to put a top on it, aw heck, let's just round it out to an even 2 years!!!

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If you look at the clock comment.......I was busting the guys reading the thread..........It is a large clock, and it is a white dial, but if you read carefully, it says I’m looking for a white clock........thus disclosing the mystery car to anyone who was reading carefully........only two people caught it..............just more old car fun!

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4 minutes ago, Matt Harwood said:

16 valve inline-4. Nice! Probably has, what, a 6500 RPM redline?


6750..........that’s why it has a mag.........the old fashion timers of the era couldn’t keep up. 

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  • gwells changed the title to The phone rang... and then the next car adventure starts

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