Second item today: Bantam Hubcap

Maybe the word Deluge earlier was a bit of an exaggeration, but this an exciting week with so many items being listed.  Perhaps we will see more items.  There will be a few more posts before the day is through.  The seller appears to have two hubcaps, but I believe the other only has Bantam painted on it.

bantam hubcap 1

Click here to place a bid or check out the listing: American Bantam Hubcap Sold for: 88.00

The Deluge of Bantam Parts May Be Beginning: Bantam Gauge

Suddenly, there are a bunch of Bantam and Austin parts available on eBay.  Stay tuned for all of the listings later today.  For now here is a Bantam 3 gauge instrument cluster.  Unfortunately, it is missing the oil pressure gauge and looks as though it has been tampered with a little bit.

Here is a photo:

Bantam Gauge 1

To place a bid or check out the listing, click here: Incomplete American Bantam Instrument Cluster Sold for: 426.99

Double Find! NOS Hupmobile Instrument Cluster and BRC Historical Photo

The wonderful thing about ebay is that you never know what other great items a seller may have.  After getting the tip about an NOS Hupmobile Instrument Cluster, I saw the seller also had an amazing original press photo of the BRC.

In 1935 and 1936, Hupmobile produced a series of cars that utilized two Stewart Warner gauge pods.  One was a speedometer, and the other a four gauge cluster.  Midway through 1936, Hupmobile discontinued production for over a year and many suppliers were left with spare parts and tooling for these low production and seldom seen luxury cars.  When Bantam was preparing for production, fate intervened and these gauges were updated for the new line of American Bantam cars.  The most obvious modifications to the gauges were the visual updates.  The speedometer was printed for 80 mph in stead of 100.  The needle was replaced with a more substantial, black, art deco pointer.

The gauge cluster on the other hand went through the most changes, and even went through an evolution with Bantam installations.  In the beginning, the Bantam civilian cars received a 3 gauge face featuring an ampere gauge on the left, a gas gauge on the bottom, and an oil pressure gauge on the right.  Out of these gauges, only the oil pressure gauge changed with the engine offering’s.  The early cars had a pressure gauge going from zero to 15 lbs, the pressurized crank two main engines received a scale from zero to 25 lbs, and the three main engines received a zero to 50 lb scale.  The BRC’s received a four gauge cluster similar to the Hupmobile unit.  However, the BRC piece utilized a different configuration with the Bantam art work.  At the 12 o’clock position clockwise, the BRC had a 30 Ampere gauge, a 50 lb oil pressure gauge, a fuel gauge, and a temperature gauge.  For some reason, the temperature gauge and oil pressure gauge were oriented directly opposite of the Hupmobile gauge.

Beyond the gauges them selves, two other changes existed between the bantam gauges.  The earlier cars had a flat glass lens which was modified to a piece of curved glass for the late 39 cars and retained for the BRC.  The other major Bantam gauge difference was the gauge face color.  Beyond the black gauges which were rumored to be used in commercial vehicles, the other colors consisted of a spectrum varying from silver to crème to gold.  Some say the color of these gauges altered quickly with the sun, so many of the gauges you will see are more charming due to their patina.

If you look carefully, these Hupmobile gauges also have small rectangular tabs for retaining them to the dashboard whereas the Bantam utilized three metal clamps.  The two outer were clamped on utilizing the choke and headlight controls and a larger bracket held the insides of the gauges against the dash, using the ignition switch as a point of attachment.

Enough about gauges, here are a couple of links to check out on eBay.  Due to some changes in the market for these gauges, it is unclear what this Hupmobile specimen will go for and how the value even relates to the Bantam parts. However, if you need a gauge and would like the luxury of having a working gauge without investing $1000 or more in a rebuild, this is a great opportunity to fill your dashboard.

1935 - 1936 Hupmobile Instrument Cluster (American Bantam, BRC)

1935 – 1936 Hupmobile Instrument Cluster (American Bantam, BRC)

Click here for the Hupmobile Instrument cluster: 1935 Hupmobile Instrument Cluster Sold for: 499.00

bantam willys Jeep 1941

Bantam BRC Press Photo

Click here for the BRC original photo: BRC Press Photo Sold for: 76.00

Happy Bidding!

Almost missed this one: Tillotson M10A Carb – American Austin

One of those pieces that is nearly impossible to find in decent shape (besides a crank shaft) is a Carb.  Here is your chance to purchase a nice looking Tillotson Carb.  If you need one for your car, this is it.  If you don’t need one, but don’t have a spare, maybe you do actually need one?  Either way, click on the link below to see how the seller advertises this magnificent piece of aluminum and bid often.

This is the link to click to get to eBay –> Tillotson M 10 A American Austin Carb Sold for: 124.99

Tillotson M10A carb for an American Austin

Tillotson M10A carb for an American Austin

9 hours left! BRC-40 Action shots (three new finds)

If you like the BRC’s, you know how hard it can be to find forgotten relics thereof.  Although buying a BRC may be out of most of our budgets, buying memorabilia usually isn’t.  These are three great action shots of Bantam Jeeps in action.  Display these on your wall with pride, knowing that the tiny car company that brought you here helped pave the way for so many of the things we continue to appreciate today.

Action shot one: BRC-60 Action Shot 1  Sold for: 103.50

BRC Action Shot

BRC Action Shot

Action shot two: BRC-60 Action Shot 2  Sold for:  76.00

 $_57 (2)

Action shot three: BRC-60 Action Shot 3 Sold for: 80.89

$_57 (3)

Happy Bidding!

Find of the day: Vintage BRC Press Photo

Have you been looking for that unique BRC photo for your collection?  Perhaps looking for a nifty photo to put on the cover of your club magazine?  Then look no further!

Up for auction, with 5.5 days left as of this post, is a 1941 photo of a BRC filled to the brim with politicians.  Clearly the BRC must have been something, look at the smile on the man’s face all the way to the left.  Get your bid in now by clicking here: BRC Climbing Steps

Please remember, even if you are planning to snipe bid, please cast a small bid through the links on this website.  If you only cast a bid later on or through the snipe service, this site will not be given the appropriate credit from ebay for referrals.

brc steps

brc 2

Sold for:202.51

Find of the Day: American Austin Radiator Shell Badge

american austin emblem

American Bantam Emblem on Ebay

There have been a few of these emblems up for sale lately, but this is one of the nicest.  Not only does it appear to have its original clossonie, it has much of the original retainer intact.  If you’d like to check this one out on ebay click here: American Austin Radiator Badge

Right now at under $30, this is a bargain.  If I hadn’t recently picked one up for my roadster, I might have had to jump in on the bidding for this piece.  If a reader here gets this, I’d love to post an after photo of it adorning your car.

american austin roadster project part emblem 1930 1931 1932 1933 1934 1935

The elusive retainer clip that holds these emblems onto the radiator surround.

Sold for:107.50

Find of the day follow up: Yes it is a Roadster

Out in Mesa, Arizona, there is a man with two American Austins.  They were imported there long ago from the mid west and have had the chance to spend their golden years in the warm dry climate.  Both cars are for sale and their histories are known back though the 1950’s; as they have been in the same family at least that long.

As for the two cars, there is a coupe; a perfect candidate for a hot rod.  It is a 1933-35 coupe that has an unfinished chop on it.  The chop was started in the 60’s, and the current owner spent a great deal of effort in correcting it so it was done properly.                      



For more information on and photos of the coupe click here.

The second car is a 1933-1934 Roadster.  The car has had some modifications to it over the years so the previous owner could keep it on the road and up to date. 


For information on and photos of the roadster click here.

The catch is, the seller would like to sell both for one price with almost enough parts to make the roadster correct.  There are a lot of parts in this lot, but it will take a lot of work to build a perfect car from either, and the seller has priced his cars accordingly.  If you’re not looking for perfect, but want a roadster you can put together with minimal work and enjoy, this may be your best chance this year.

Hidden Treasures

For years I’ve scoured the web pursuing my far-scattered interests.  One place I have enjoyed lurking and posting is theHamb.  While working on compiling the American Austin and Bantam section here, and looking for some pieces for a personal project, I found myself on theHamb.  Although their new interface has left a lot to be desired, in my opinion, there is still some wonderful content and great community support.  If you have never been to theHamb, I suggest you try it out.

With the new interface, the creators have invested time in implementing a new search algorithm which I haven’t gotten used to yet.  Trusting google to take up my slack, I began my search.  Hidden deep within theHamb, but only posted recently, I found out that a car I had posted on this website had recently found a home.  Actually, when it was posted here, it was more of a shell; in need of someone to give it copious amounts of love.

The Giovanni Cam Bantam- 2014

The Giovanni Cam Bantam- 2014

Bereft of everything making it the monster it was in the 60’s and everything that made it a great compact car in the late 30’s, the new owner brought his car to the hot rodding community.  He was seeking any clues to the car’s past that anyone could provide.  Thankfully, theHamb is well stocked with people who have a great memory for cool cars.

Within hours, a member posted a not only a clue to the history of the car, not only a photo, but a scanned image of the magazine on which it was a cover car.  This shell, was a cover car only 52 years ago.

The mystery bantam in June 1962

The mystery bantam in June 1962

There were some very drastic modifications made on the car in the intervening years, but the car was left with a few clues as to its origin; the reshaped cowl, the remnants of the name “Scruffy III” above the rear window, and some well aged decals on the passenger side of the car.

The current owner is elated at his purchase and has magnificent plans to bring it back to life.  To follow the story of the “Southern Stormer,” click here.  Did the buyer know what he was getting into when he took the plunge?  Not necessarily.  Could this have worked out any better?  Probably not.

The moral of the story is, you never know what you are going to find out there and sometimes you don’t even know as much about your own items as you think.  We are very fortunate when we can find people who can help shed light on our treasures and help polish them back to their former luster.