Sunken number plate trunks

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  • #11303
    Quentin Hall
    Participant

    Getting restless to do some work on my 39. Car is stored elsewhere but I have the trunk. Sunken number plates ! Were these around prewar? I have seen a couple of nice custom 41 cads with sunken plates but not sure when they came in to vogue. Anybody got pics of one being done? I presume that most used a round rod perimeter and the sheet metal rolled over the edge. I like the rounded corner style. I’d love to make a Perspex dome (i used to make skylights) trying to work out how you would not get a trunk full of water though , despite my skylight knowledge….? Also I need to work out what the dimensions of the appropriate period number plates would be? I would like to get some period 39 plates seen some nice 39 Worlds Fair commemorative ones on eBay. Pics? Ideas? Thanks Q

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    #11304
    Rik Hoving
    Keymaster

    Possibly the sunken license plates in customs is another idea borrowed from the Coachbuilder.

    Here is an 1938 Bentley that has one set in and mounted behind glass. The glass on this one is however framed and mounted on top of the body.

    I’m not sure if there are any Customs that had them pre-war… I think there are, but right now I cannot really think of one that has a date on it to proof its actually pre-war.

    Neil Emory added two of them on his 1937 Dodge in 1941.

    As for the size of the plates… I cannot help you. But my friend Tim Kirkegaard has those ‘1939 World Fair plates on his 1939 Mercury. I will ask him about the size.

    Enjoy the beauty of Customizing

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    #11306
    Quentin Hall
    Participant

    Perfect Rik, love that streamline Bentley. 41 was prewar for America ! Westergard and Bertolucci were doing it also but not sure of the timeframe. Prewar or not doesn’t matter a whole lot now as I am using my new “slimline” 46 bumpers. But thanks for proving the origins. Looks like I have a good project to tackle over the next few nights…

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    #11307
    Ron Brooks
    Participant

    Heres another early one.

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    #11308
    Bert Gustafsson
    Participant

    Hey Quentin, check out the Flying Wombat.

    flying wombat

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    #11317
    Quentin Hall
    Participant

    Thanks guys. Next issue to work out is how to relocate trunk lock Mech. Only just figured out that locking pins go sideways and not to the middle of the trunk floor. That is so the spare tire can be slid out. Somehow I must come up with a new locking/release system. ….always another challenge.
    The more I look at GMs styling of the era the more the relationship to custom cars becomes apparent. Took till 53 and the trunk of the Corvette is so similar to the Bentley and the Flying Wombat. ( I have seen a few wombats and they don’t fly and have a big fat bum. flying platypus is more appropriate if you have to give it an Australian nickname). I guess that is why most of the car designers were young and fresh,just out of art school and many of them had not reached 30, most were working by day , dreaming bout customs by night.
    The flying wombat is in my top five…

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    #11319
    Bert Gustafsson
    Participant

    Well, this wombat can definitely fly.

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    #11320
    Rik Hoving
    Keymaster

    What a great movie Bert… I had not seen that one before. Thanks for sharing.

    Enjoy the beauty of Customizing

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    #11325
    Quentin Hall
    Participant

    Interestingly I have discovered that there were two sizes of olates being used in California in the 39 thru 46 period that I want to be correct in. The 39 plates are approx 14 inches long and the 40 on, plates are 12 inches long . I think I will have to go with the longer opening for practical reasons being that our current Australian standard size plates are the longer size . . . But then I could get personalized plates in the smaller size? This custom business is too flexible and I am too indecisive. Haha.

    These both used the 12 inch smaller size plate. The 40 thru 55 issue plates had the rounded corners which I really like. (I’m back working in Perth and don’t have any of my pics stored on this iPad.)

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    #11345
    Bert Gustafsson
    Participant

    Sorry for being a bit off topic here but where are the tail lights located on that dark -41 above, under the bumper?

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    #11346
    Rik Hoving
    Keymaster

    Sorry for being a bit off topic here but where are the tail lights located on that dark -41 above, under the bumper?

    Yes, possebly under the bumpers. Good thing is this car survived, and is in the process of being restored… Only very slowely due to health issues. So perhaps we will be able to tell for sure in the future… Hopefully a near future.

    Enjoy the beauty of Customizing

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    #11347
    Bert Gustafsson
    Participant

    Thanks for the update Rik. Yes, let’s hope he gets well real soon.

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    #11348
    Quentin Hall
    Participant

    Yes,it will be great to see some more pics of that 41. So cleanly done. The taillight issue is an interesting one because legality for road use comes into it also. My mate just did a 32 hot rod and had to use led strip lights to incorporate blinkers on the outside of brake lights. He hid it in the gap between the body and the frame rail and you only see when he’s indicating . Not traditional, but a necessity.
    The number plate has to be legally lit so I will need to find a slimline light for that as well… And there is possibility that it is illegal to house the plate behind Perspex due to new policing using number plate camera recognition in the police cars. My dad copped a $400 fine cos he accidentally let his rego lapse two weeks and the incar camera picked up. There is every chance that solenoid operated door poppers are illegal here as well, due to inaccessability in the event of an accident and the battery being disconnected and people trapped inside.
    In any event I have marked the opening on the trunk and still need to decide exactly how to form the case behind before I make the first incision . I think I may make a round rod perimeter frame and roll the outer sheet metal over it. I like the look of a rounded opening rather than a hammered flat seam. Clamping and sealing the Perspex will be the hardest thing to workout. It is quite a compound curve so it may require a slight dome to be blown. . .
    Another day of work on a 53 Eldorado awaits and 39 custom dreams must wait. . . It’s a tough life .

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    #11357
    Bert Gustafsson
    Participant

    Maybe you can pick up one or two ideas if you take a look at one of those mail slot rear window frames for a thirties or forties convertible. Or why not for the Eldorado you are working on.

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    #11358
    Quentin Hall
    Participant

    Morning coffee,a read of the CCC and back to the 53. Good idea Bert. I do prefer the Westergard Cad rolled painted edge rather than a chromed edge. . . After all I am trying to dechrome all that die cast junk that was originally on the trunklid, but it is definitely a good way to sandwich the Perspex. Maybe I just need one half screwed from the inside. I have a spare conv back window frame in Brisbane. . . And it would be good stylistically to duplicate the opening of the rear window as we’ll. . . Mmmmmmm more to think about.
    I have searched high and low for more info on that Sixty special custom you posted and drawn a blank.

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