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Simon Cast

Modelworks replica 1912 "coffin-nosed" Stanley steamer kit

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I wanted to ask all of you who have been kind enough to read this what your thought's would be if Modelworks decided to offer a kit of the 1912 "coffin-nosed" Stanley steamer car. We have been so staggered by the response to the 1901 Locomobile kit that I thought I would like to gauge everybody's thought's and opinion's on us developing a kit for the far more complex (but incredibly desireable) 1912 "coffin-nosed" Stanley Steamer.

www.stanleysteamer.com/woolf/woolfpix7-26/charlottesville_Steam_Car_Tour_2002-54.JPG

I am of the opinion that we would be able to produce an accurate and highly authentic kit in about 18-24 months from now, with kit 24 being despatched by 2007-8. Once the Locomobile has finished, I feel our clients will look at us and say:-

"Okay the locomobile was pretty great, what's your encore going to be. Because the locomobile will be a tough act to follow and to exceed"

I believe the 1912 would do just that, it would have that all important "WOW" factor. However, it would need to be supplied in very limited numbers. I am thinking of probably no more than 50-75 worldwide, and with a retail figure of probably approaching $80-85,000. An original sold in the UK last year for $125,000 by the way. We would probably supply it over a 24 month build programme, and we would require a substantial initial deposit of around 20-25%, I would have thought. This would then leave $2500-3000 per month over the remaining 24 month's. Please, please understand these are highly speculative figures because I am just trying to gauge interest levels at this stage. Marketing graduates will probably euphamistically call this "kite-flying".

Please feel free to be as brutal or on a more positive note, as constructive as you feel able to do so. I await all point's of view both positive and negative with great anticipation.

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I hate to tell you this Simon and I may be speaking out of turn, but I don't know two people that could even afford a model like that. If they could, I'd think they'd rather have the real thing that they can drive around the neighborhood and show off to their friends. This is just my opinion, but then I'm just a home grown farm boy with barely two nickles to rub together. Wayne

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I would think a 1910 Stanley would be easier to build, less costly, and more desireable than a 1912. What size are you considering? I presume 20 hp.

I agree that I would think many people would rather have an original for the same or less money, but apparently the 1901 Locomobiles are popular, and those kits are approximately the same price of an original.

Just my thoughts,

Chris

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Simon,

To start with your link is not working but I think I figured out which picture you are referring to. If this is the correct picture it is not a 1912 Stanley but rather a 1908 Stanley Model K. I happen to know because I am sitting in the drivers seat just after taking it for a run. It is not my car and belongs to a friend who was generous enough to let me drive it.

This particular car was formerly owned by Melton, Rockfeller, and Harrah and is one of the 3 known originals that exist of 25 that were built in 1908. The Model K is a 30 hp car and performs very well. It has long legs and cruises nicely at 55 mph. The performance of a steam car is like nothing else. The man who owns this car always tells the gas car gents that they just got ?half a ride?. You have to get behind steam to get a full ride.

I think your plan to produce a coffin nosed Stanley has some merit and there are several Model K?s in existence that have been assembled from a mix of new and original Stanley parts. Due to the rarity of 30 hp engines several of the assembled cars are based around the more common 20 hp Stanley engine. Many of the casting patterns and parts are available to assemble these cars.

Personally a market of 50-75 cars at $85,000+ seems like a bit of a stretch to me. I am not a big fan of your Locomobile project mainly because it is not a car that is practical for road use. But the way you are marketing it and the goal of mass-producing 100 cars at a realistic cost makes sense. I would suggest that you should consider another coffin nosed Stanley that is just as exciting as the Model K but a somewhat simpler car and should be more economical to produce than a Model K. The car I have in mind is the Stanley H5 more commonly know as the ?Gentleman?s Speedy Roadster?. See the links for a picture of one of the existing cars. I think if you do a bit of research you will find that this car is not a lot more complicated than the Locomobile your are producing but it has a 20 hp engine and boiler and drives very well. This is smaller car than a Model K and is not as long legged but it handles amazingly well and is still quite powerful. If you could produce these cars for something nearer to the cost of a Locomobile I think you would have a lot of interest. A lot of the casting, parts, and patterns are also available for the H5?s and that may help with the preliminary planning for a production run.

H5 Picture 1

H5 Picture 2

I will be interested to know what type of interest you have for a coffin nosed Stanley Project. I know steam cars are very popular right now and getting more cars on the road has to be a plus.

<span style="font-weight: bold">Alan</span>

Charlottesville_Steam_Car_Tour_2002-54.JPG

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Alan

Thank you so much for your help in establishing the link that I wanted to achieve. Man, am I a technological klutz, or what! The idea for the H5 is an excellent one, particularly if parts, patterns, or ideally drawings and blueprints are available. If, admittedly, with a little effort and research. The Stanley Museum in Maine, and Jeff Theobald (the president and authentication officer of the GB steam car club) have been extraordinarily helpful with our Locomobile project, so hopefully after that project has been completed they will be as kind and as constructive once more, I do hope so.

Thank you all for your thought's and input thus far, I really do appreciate it, you are all so kind in taking the trouble to write on this forum.

On reflection perhaps the Locomobile is the only steam buggy/vehicle that would lend itself to our "build as you buy" concept. I really would like Modelworks to attempt the 1912/H5, and I am rapidly leaning towards the H5 because it does seem far more suited to our programme/concept of monthly self assembly. Particularly if components are similar, if perhaps a little beefed up, compared to the Locomobile. In terms of retail costings I must do some homework on that. Does anyone out there reading this have any idea of the cost of an H5 in good/excellent condition if one were to become available to the market? Any input would be greatly appreciated, once again Alan thank you so much for you help.

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