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New owner 100/115R 
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Joined: Mon Jul 23, 2018 8:49 pm
Posts: 11
Location: Alabama
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Post New owner 100/115R
Hello all,

Recently acquired my courier 100/115 R. My bill of sales states 1959/ but it might be 1960 so I’ve been told, still working on that mystery. The Former, original owner George Demetropulos, Mobile, LA
As the story goes he special ordered a RHD from England delivered to Continental Motors, Washington D.C. it was a modified production street car, not a kit as I understand it.

If anyone knows anything about George or his #91 car I would appreciate to hear from you. Between Roger Dunbar and Bob L . I have learned some.

SCCA listed the car with Two third place podiums, and George is listed in the ELVA Bible as having been a known Elva driver.

The car still runs and drives with approximately 3900 miles on the odometer and appears to be fairly complete and functioning.

I will over time be looking for misc items that some of you may have or might know someone who might, mostly little things hub caps or maybe street rims from the time.

Once I figure out how to post photos I will do so

Thanks in advance for any information or light you might be able to shed on this car.

Bob


Tue Jul 24, 2018 10:27 pm
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Joined: Wed Feb 03, 2010 7:52 am
Posts: 956
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Post Re: New owner 100/115R
Bob .. you will find info about posting images at viewtopic.php?f=2&t=262
If you scroll down when putting text on a posting, you will see Filename and Choose File .. tap on that and you will get options to add a photo then press Add the file and that should do the trick. However, note limitations on file sizes etc.
You also have an option to use File comment if you wish to add a caption to your photo.
If it goes wrong you can always delete or modify, but it's quite straightforward once you give it a try. ;)
Rog


Wed Jul 25, 2018 10:42 am
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Joined: Mon Jul 23, 2018 8:49 pm
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Location: Alabama
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Post Re: New owner 100/115R
1959/60 mystery solved thanks to the USA based registry, it’s 1960

100/115 R . . George Demetropoulis, Mobile, AL . . 1960 ….. white ….. RAD pics; 1500, high lights, Hastings RHD;
__ _ __ _ __ _ __ _ __ _ __ USA new; SCCA ep #41, #91 Wimpffen results p.99,119,150


Wed Jul 25, 2018 1:44 pm
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Joined: Wed Mar 10, 2010 1:00 am
Posts: 67
Location: South Jersey, USA
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Post Re: New owner 100/115R
Some of that text looks familiar, so I should clarify.

The "1960" following Geo.Dem's name means only that he owned it in 1960. My shorthand.
In fact, a Courier 115 should be late summer 1959. With American car model years beginning fall previous, USA dealers, time spent on shipping before being offered for sale, and individual state's titling policy, it could be titled 1960.

Adding to my confusion is the 100/xxx RHD. Not a large sampling of 100/ R cars on the registry. Most of the RHD Hastings Couriers were 200/xxx.

Sorry for any confusion my notes might draw. I am glad you posted the question; maybe others wondered and will contribute their Couriers' factory information. This list is only as good as the information I receive.


Gary Cossaboon
USA registry guy


Wed Aug 08, 2018 11:13 pm
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Joined: Wed Feb 03, 2010 7:52 am
Posts: 956
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Post Re: New owner 100/115R
Gary is quite right in that there was quite a long period of time between a car being completed in the factory and taking that long trip across the Pond. It would have had to be moved by road or train to the docks and loaded on a ship with time spent on the docks either end of the journey. Then it would have gone to a dealer, in this case Continental Motors, for eventual collection by the excited new owner.
However the indication is that this car appears to be a more unusual and individual example of the Courier of that period in that it is reported to have a lighter weight body, was specified to be RHD as the customer felt that this had a 'racing advantage', it (now) has the earlier style front section and was bought by a guy who had several competition cars and had every intention of using the Courier as a fun racer. It doesn't seem to have been used on many occasions but further research is needed. A good find and a car that will be sympathetically restored and returned to its intended use.

This car did raise queries about that word 'kit' and suggested some misunderstanding around those cars with plates stamped with the suffix 'RK' indicating RHD KIT .. I sent these words to hopefully clarify ...
" Let's get the RK 'kit' situation cleared up .. the 'kit' designation is purely a tax 'dodge', which only applied to cars supplied in the UK. So 100/115/R is all that appears on the chassis plate, although at first it was not easy to be sure as the original plate is of course aged and not easy read from a photograph.
This Courier was built for export so the unseen 'K' would be appropriate; in other words not identified as a 'kit'.
The RK 'kit' cars were effectively fully built and equipped but the UK government rules required that certain items were to be purchased by the first owner elsewhere, and not from the car manufacturers, in this case ELVA Cars. So paperwork was such that ELVA supplied the car, but certain identified parts (rear axle and rear suspension units) were 'supplied' by RYTUNE, although the reality was that everything was collected together from the same address and the final assembly completed in a couple of days (+/- 16 hours). The help of a strong friend or two was useful!
That purchase tax avoidance rule existed from the earliest Couriers built, and saved a significant tax payment of near 20%, but of course most of the early cars were shipped across the pond so it did not apply.
There was little formality in stamping plates in the late 1950's and early 1960's so do not try to find strict rules which did not exist in period, and be open minded. "

I often drive near the Avonmouth docks just outside of Bristol and see many hundred af new cars sitting in huge parking areas awaiting shipment to far flung lands where there will be eventually registered as probably 2019 models.

I wonder if anyone checks those VIN numbers for a build date??? I suspect not ... maybe in 60 years time! :-)


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Thu Aug 09, 2018 6:45 am
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Joined: Wed Mar 10, 2010 1:00 am
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Location: South Jersey, USA
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Post Re: New owner 100/115R
ElvaRacingRoger wrote:
the indication is that this car appears to be a more unusual and individual example of the Courier of that period in that it is reported to have a lighter weight body, was specified to be RHD as the customer felt that this had a 'racing advantage', it (now) has the earlier style front section and was bought by a guy who had several competition cars and had every intention of using the Courier as a fun racer. It doesn't seem to have been used on many occasions but further research is needed. A good find and a car that will be sympathetically restored and returned to its intended use.


There was little formality in stamping plates in the late 1950's and early 1960's so do not try to find strict rules which did not exist in period, and be open minded. "


I had not understood the reference to a lighter weight body on 100/115/R until your response. Interesting! Who prepared the placard?

During the Mk.IV-T Sebring lightweight research I saw reference to the early "Spyder" Couriers, best known 100/5/R NPM620 the second rebuild, that Kolb raced in the states in 1960. Another is 200/14/SR now in PA, USA.
Any records of these?
Could 115R be one of the six(?) Spyders?

Given factory "tolerances" how does an inexperienced owner know his car has a lighter weight body?
There were areas, in flat panels especially, that my cars would compress under pressure from a thumb, and break through with full body weight on a knee. I attributed this to age and weather making English fiberglass brittle, hundreds of hours sanding, and my AVDP.

re: stamped plates
There develops a pattern with the stamping style and size that does tell a story, also very interesting, particularly when you see that damned 100/21 and 23/L on Hastings plates. That is another post !


Keep up the good work for us fans, please.
Gary C


Thu Aug 09, 2018 1:00 pm
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Joined: Wed Feb 03, 2010 7:52 am
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Post Re: New owner 100/115R
Thanks for your prompt input Gary ..
I had wondered about the Spyder possibility but here is part of a discussion with another Courier owner ..
" I have assumed that the car with the 200/14/SR plate was the first Syder model before it was decided to use the 300/x/SR numbering .. there were also cars showing 400/xx/L but of course the whole numbering system is full of uncertainties probably introduced to try and fool the tax man! "
So it is thought that 200/14/SR was the prototype Spyder and the few following production cars showed the 300 prefix with the 'SR' indicating Spyder RHD. I feel sure that I have also seen 'Spyder' stamped instead of Courier but maybe I have imagined that. It must be remembered that different people in the ELVA workforce may have stamped the plates over time using their own stamping sets hence variants are inevitable.
Once Bob gets the car up high enough to take some nice photos of the suspension corners then it will be clear if it has the Spyder adjustable setup.
Your reference to 100/5/R is very early number to be a Spyder .. I will check some dates but if that Courier was used as a 'works' car then it may have later been rebuilt by the factory as a Spyder. Perhaps ....
Equally the 100/21 and 100/23 numbers on Hastings headed plates are oddball .. just maybe replacement plates??


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Thu Aug 09, 2018 2:35 pm
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Post Re: New owner 100/115R
Gary
Referring to the Courier Spyder, I have a copy of a letter which Frank Nichols wrote to Chuck Dietrich dated the 12th November 1958, and it includes ...
" After discussions with Walter Dickson we are going into the question of producing the Courier Spyder. The idea being that so many people in the States seem to be determined to race the Courier. This car is to include in its specification, larger brakes, tuned MG engine (possibly the Derrington Head and 9:1 Pistons), centre lock wheels (wire) optional, aero screen and tonneau cover. They will not, however, be available for some little while. "
That means the Spyder was not introduced until well into 1959 .. I will look out the article in which it was reviewed.
Just MAYBE 100/115/R has some of the Spyder features.


Thu Aug 09, 2018 3:48 pm
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Joined: Mon Jul 23, 2018 8:49 pm
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Location: Alabama
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Post Re: New owner 100/115R
Wow, so I still don’t know the year....lol. I was thinking 59’ build but 60’ papered. Any suggestions on which way to register it? As I have yet to do so, or does it matter at all?

A potential spyder prototype, you guys have got my head spinning. I think I’ll just keep it running at the moment until I know more before attempting any “restoration”.

As far as the front clip, there is no apparent body work inside the fender wells, and the lines look almost like ther had been tape on the exterior which removed the paint when the tape was removed.

Anything specific that I am looking for on the suspension?

As far as the reference to the ultra thin fiberglass, those are the words of the original owner on his poster board, and yes if you put any pressure on it the fenders flex, also noted by my paint and body guy the rear fenders are thin enough that they actually “wave” in they are not flat.

Thanks
I can be reached at 907 229-6259 if needed to discuss more about the car.
Bob R 100/115R


Thu Aug 09, 2018 9:14 pm
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Joined: Wed Feb 03, 2010 7:52 am
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Post Re: New owner 100/115R
Bob
I don't think anyone is pointing at this Courier being the Spyder prototype .. you will see that I suggested that 200/14//SR is the likely candidate, however it may have some of the attributes.
Sometime please share some pics of the rear suspension corners with wheels removed and that will confirm.


Thu Aug 09, 2018 9:28 pm
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