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1918 Bell Motor Car Restoration Project

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This thread was created to allow for all of those who are interested to follow along in my research and restoration efforts for my 1918 Bell Motor Car. 



How this project all started:

I was scrolling through Facebook one day in may 2016 when I came across photos from an upcoming estate auction posted in one of the car groups I follow. There were some interesting old cars in the photos, but what stuck out to me was the photo of the data tag for a Bell Motor Car of York, Pa. This caught my eye very quickly being that I have lived most of my life in York.  


BellAuctionphoto1.jpg.040708487668933e5ee83888a2ec3832.jpg BellAuctionphoto3.jpg.f351b093cc07078322022c9f46906829.jpg

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The post I had stumbled upon had no link to the auction listing and was eventually taken down for some reason, so I had to do some digging before I found the original auction listing - June 25th, 2016 in Mifflinburg, Pa., only a couple hours from me - I had about a month to wait to see if I could make the car mine (and come up with as much savings as possible as I was 22 and still in college at the time). 


I found out a couple weeks prior that my family had a prior engagement up in New York on the same day as the auction (upsetting to me as I really wanted to be there in person). So, June 25th came and there I was, in car on the way up to New York with my family, instead of at the auction. Luckily for me though, the auction had live online bidding (such a saving grace)!! I was watching on my phone from the start, praying that the Bell lot would not come up when I had bad signal - when it got close I loaded the auction on both my phone and my dad's phone, just in case one stopped working, I had made up my mind that this car was going to be mine. Then finally, the Bell lot came up. Initially, bidding jumped right over my pre-bid amount. I watched as I'd click bid and then be out bid again, so I put in the max I could afford and hoped for the best. The hammer call came across the online bidding and then the screen moved onto the next lot - I frantically clicked back to see the result, I had WON! I was so excited and couldn't wait to see my site unseen purchase when we got back!




Next week came, auction items paid for, it was time to pickup my car! With my worn out 76 Dodge D100 and a borrowed trailer I travelled up to Mifflinburg to collect my winnings (Yes, I also bought a really smashed MG from the auction and we did not do great with weight distribution on the trailer). 



PickinguptheBellphoto2.jpg.fe3843a8960c5b680bac5b9825495810.jpg PickinguptheBellphoto3.jpg.c40e102549ad6248e33c1870a4133b6a.jpg


Now here we are 7 years later and unfortunately the car does not really look any different from what you see in these photos. However, I have been able to track down a few parts such as an engine/transmission and a radiator emblem. 


And though this project has not made as much progress as I would have liked in the last few years it has enabled me to meet some really great, knowledgeable, and encouraging people and I think that's part of what makes this hobby so great!



More info/updates and pictures to follow. 


**Please see my other posts regarding parts I am looking for (just search "Bell Motor Car" in the forum search) - right now I'm concentrated on finding a good donor chassis**


Thanks for following along in this adventure!!



Edited by TheYorkBell
Picture formatting (see edit history)
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