The 83 Toronado Convertible is a rather rare car, specialty made by American Sunroof Company, depending on sources, well less than 500 of these were built.
The owner of this ragtop had purchased the car with her (then) husband from the original owner of the car who lived just over the border in NY state. The idea was to enjoy the car as a family summer cruiser to go to the beach, cruise nights, ice cream, etc. and they did! They put roughly 15,000 miles on the car in ten years of ownership. However, as cars can deteriorate, so can relationships and their marriage started faltering. The car was stuffed into the garage and those family fun trips were a thing of the past.
In the divorce, the ex-husband didn't want the car and the wife rec'd it in the divorce decree.
After taking the kids out in it a few times however, they all decided it was just sort of weird and didn't feel the same.
Her attorney contacted me and said she needed to move the car on.
It took a couple of months to find the right buyer, as although rare, that doesn't necessarily mean it's popular or valuable. The new owner was in Georgia and it was shipped to him via my friends at Beacon Shipping.
The story of this 46 Nash is a great one.
Back in the early 50's the then Russel Manufacturing company's separate fire dept. purchased this Nash new and had it outfitted with all the bells and whistles a Fire Chief's car would need; radio, light, siren, etc.
It was used as the Chief's car up into the 70's and often appeared in parades.
In that same time frame, the town of Middletown was growing and absorbed the Russel Manufacturing Fire Dept. and named that division South District.
The car was eventually slated for sale and the fellow standing in the truck in the first photo purchased her. He set out to restore the car. Unfortunately, he fell ill but his brothers in the FD decided to continue his project and get the car restored. He was able to ride in it in at least one parade before he passed away.
It was sold as part of the estate to another brother in the FD who was able to get it back on the road and enjoyed her for several years, inviting the other fireman's children and grand children to ride in it for several parades.
The car was part ofa multi-car collection and ended up relegated to the back of the fleet. He decided it was time for the car to find a new home.
He contacted me after seeing an article in a local magazine and I was able to get the car sold to a fire equipment collector in the small town of Russell Iowa.
Again, my friends at Beacon Shipping and Logistics got her delivered safe and sound.
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Purchased as almost new in 1969, this 67 Scout Sportop has more stories attached to her than anyone can remember.
The young couple bought the truck and decided to hitch a camper to it and drive around the country. 11 months later they came back home. During that time they had run ins with some angry bikers who kicked the rear quarter panel, they assisted stuck travelers in Yellowstone Park... by adding water to an already soggy, muddy area, people coming through in cars would get stuck, and this young couple, needing some cash to continue their trip, would assist with the factory/dealer mounted Warn winch..most people would offer them some sort of compensation. As they traveled, they would camp outside a small town and then head in get a quick, part time job.. make a few dollars and after a week or so, be back on their way.
The little Scout pulled that trailer through pretty much every state, including Death Valley, Florida and the Rockies. The little IH V8 chugging along w/o hesitation.
When they returned home, the Scout was used regularly as one of their primary modes of transportation. It was only within the last 10+ years that the truck was relegated to plow duty. Some electrical issues bogged her down and she sat idle for several years on the back part of the couple's property.
The couple was reading a local small magazine and noticed an article on me, the AutoArcheologist. They gave me a call and I was out there quickly to see this rare Scout factory convertible. Within days of it being posted there was tons of interest and just a couple days later is was sold locally to a Scout aficionado who says the Scout will be revived and drive again.
While waiting for the tow truck, we took some rags and water and cleaned her up.. blew out the leaves and such and she darn near looked presentable.
This old Mustang was originally owned by this owner's neighbor. He purchased the car in the early 70's and drove the car as a daily driver for over 30 years. He went on his honeymoon in the car and brought their first child home from the hospital in her. But as time wore on, the Mustang wore out.
Still running but with some mechanical rust issues starting to appear, the car was tucked into the garage with the idea of doing a restoration on her.
Of course, life stepped in and changed those plans and eventually the car was sent to the back yard.
The car sat out side for at least 10 years when a friend of mine moved in next door and the view out their front window was this unfortunate lost soul. She spoke to the owner and he agreed it was time to find a new home for her.
The Mustang was sold within days of her being posted.
Now this is a story made for the AutoArcheologist site!
Back in the late 50's the owner of Ace Rug Cleaning purchased this 1955 JBE Olson/Chevy Curbside/Step van. They used it as a main delivery truck for many years, with the same person driving it for nearly 20 years... We'll call him Grampy.
Grampy retired and the truck did too. It was tucked into the back yard of the rug shop and became a fort, army truck, cabin, space ship and whatever else the kids who played in it over the next 30+ years imagined it to be.
I was contacted by an estate sales associate who said that she had a friend with an older, probably 1955, Chevy step van. I contacted her friend and set time to see the truck. It was in great shape for sitting in the same place for three plus decades. Aluminum bodied, there was no rust there, and due to its ride height, there was really only surface rust on the frame and suspension. There were certain steel pieces in the cab and near the motor that were pretty bad but overall, pretty darned good shape.
The truck was posted to this site, several FB pages and CL initially. It didn't need anything more, as within 12 hours, I had several people interested in seeing the truck. Upon contact with the owner as to when he could be there to show the truck, the first 4 folks were not available.
The 5th person that had contacted me said in his email that his Dad (Grampy) had driven this truck for 20 years and that he had grown up in this truck... as a matter of fact, he had even learned how to drive standard in it. How he came to find the truck was even more goose pimple inducing. His Dad (Grampy) had died just a couple years back and recently there have been some odd things happening to his family that can only be explained as Grampy still being around. Every once in a while he scans through CL looking for a good deal. This particular Saturday he chose to take a look, the first vehicle that came up was this truck, the truck his dad had driven. He immediately contacted me, and being the only person who was available to see the truck (coincidence?), came down to see her. As he stepped through the rear doors of the truck, something he had done numerous times before as a child, he teared up... Grampy/Dad was there... Needless to say, he purchased the truck on the spot! Less than a week later the truck was sitting at her new home, back together with Grampy and his family.
This 1934 Studebaker Dictator was found in a junk yard by the owner I represented.
He had another car also found in a junkyard and figured another project would be good to have. We're not sure where in the ownership lineage he was but the car came home and was tucked into the garage. He amassed a great deal of parts for the car and was tinkering here and there with the car, along with two other project cars. Unfortunately the owner passed away before he could finish two of the projects. Being fellow members of the local Jaguar Club, I was contacted by his widow and I was able to move onto new homes all of his vehicles, that included not only this Stude but a 41 Packard, a 63 XK-E coupe and a trailer and a bunch of parts.
She's seen here loaded up and headed to a new home in Cincinatti, OH.
They say a picture is worth a thousand words. The photos to the left can definitely tell a story w/o any.
Despite that fact, I'll try to fill in some of the blanks from the initial photos, taken in the early 70's, to the last photo, taken nearly 50 years later.
Delivered new to the US Marine Corps in February of 1953 it was put through its courses as a typical military vehicle. Sometime in the mid 60's it was taken out of service and sold to a big horn sheep farmer in Wyoming. He used it out on the range to herd sheep and do standard farm/ranch work.
In 1970, this family purchased the truck and made several trips back and forth between CT to WY. Here in CT it was used as a work truck, mostly around the local farm, hauling small livestock and doing a bit of logging work. As one can see, the entire family had a part in the history of this truck. Evidenced in the first two photos, the truck had not yet been worked that hard here in CT, as the panels are all straight and the paint looks pretty solid too.
Sometime nearly 30 years ago, in the mid 80's, it was shifted into a barn on the property, where it sat until about 2 years ago, around 2015. During that span, the owner, who had driven it more than once from CT to WY and back, was doing work to the old truck to keep her going and was refreshing the engine, the winch and several other items.
In 2015, it was parked on the edge of the field it currently sits in, next to the stone wall, due to ownership transfer of some of the original land and buildings. The original farmer has since passed on and his widow and children were clearing off the property and had been refered to me to assist in getting the old truck moved on to a new loving owner who could possibly bring her back to usable condition.
After a couple of weeks of the ads being circulated, I was contacted by a father and son team who plan to to bring her back, possibly even restoring her to her former military glory.
The last photo shows the truck loaded up on the trailer for her trip to her new home in MA.
Hopefully the father and son will stay in touch with some photos that I can add to the lineup to the left.
This is a fairly short story... However, it has a great new beginning...
From what we know, the car was purchased from someone down in N'Orleans. The car had been worked on a bit, having a newly rebuilt motor with a cam, triple Weber carbs , a header and new aluminum rear trailing arms and bushings.
She was also wearing a fairly poor coat of paint, sprayed over the original French Blue.
However, she was a solid car and ran well.
The owner here in CT developed a health issue that would not allow him to drive this car or any other stick shift/manual transmission cars.
The car sat for several years as the owner hoped he'd be able to get around the issue, but that didn't happen and the car was found by me and my wife whilst on a bicycle ride in the area.
As we spoke with the owner, we found we all shared an affinity with nice old cars.. Foreign, American, whatever... yes, he would like some assistance in selling the car.
After finding the sweet spot in the pricing range, it was sold to a local radio personality who has taken up the hobby of small British car restoration. With an MGB under his belt, he felt it was time to move up a notch to a TR. From here his plan is to get into possibly a Healey and then a Jaguar. I'll be waiting to see how this girl turns out...
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