- Written by webmin
It shouldn’t surprise me how much awesome stuff changed hands through the pages of Hemmings Motor News over our 50-plus-year history, but every time I go looking through old issues, I’m simply floored by the unusual and the awesome. For instance, from the August 1978 issue, I found the above Pontiac-powered aluminum-bodied roadster. If you’re an astute HCC Lost and Found reader, you’ll recognize this as the Herb Adams-built Vivant, which we included in HCC #54, 63, and 65. A collector in the Detroit area was selling it back in 1978 for $6,000 and for some reason called it the Blue Bird.
In the same issue, I spotted this Brubaker Box. I am surprised this is the first Brubaker Box I’ve seen in looking through all these late 1970s issues of Hemmings. The Arlington, Virginia-based seller was asking $7,950 for it.
The Brunswick, Maine-based seller’s description of this custom includes all the pertinent details we’ve turned up on it:
A Truly Unique Vehicle – early 1950s scratchbuilt custom
A big handsome car. Very good proportions. Originally built in 1952, Fitchburg, MA. Never totally completed. Has the following components: 1939 Graham club coupe frame and body sectioned about four inches, not chopped; 1949 Buick rear quarters; side-mounted late 1930s Lincoln K front fenders and grille; five Chrysler wire wheels; powered by 1952 Studebaker 239 V-8 and automatic transmission.
He was asking $3,500 for it, but was open to trades.
UPDATE: Kit Foster got in touch with Jon Lee, who was selling the custom at the time, and Jon responded:
I remember this car very well…My partner and I bought it along with a ‘40 Packard 110 Business coupe in Fitchburg, MA. It was in primer and was bare inside. We did an appropriate, for the seventies, two tone bronze and cream paint job and put in sixties T-Bird seats. It was an interesting looking but evil handling beast. Supposedly the chassis, ‘52 Studebaker Commander, was from a low-mileage wreck.
As you can see, the rest of the car came from various different sources. We took it to a Fall Carlisle meet and sold it to a rather strange young man. I don’t remember what we got for it, but it was less that the $3,500 we were asking. He in turn advertised it for sale at an astronomical price with a fanciful story attached about it being built for some middle-eastern potentate (I forget who he claimed to be the owner), and that it was bodied by ‘Paramount.’ I don’t know if he ever sold it.
Kit also told us that the mystery car in the background of the above photo is still in Jon’s family.
Nothing extremely rare here, just a 427 Cobra chassis, also out of the Detroit area. No price listed, but the seller did offer an aluminum body to go with it.
I couldn’t find any ads related to these two images, so either I wasn’t looking close enough, or the photos were placed in the wrong box. Anybody know the coachbuilders responsible for them?