Salvage Squad

Midwest Amphicar

Worlds Largest Amphicar Destination
:) Finally got a chance to watch "Salvage Squad". A welcome addition to the hot tub cinema. Hey Dave Chapman, send 'em over here so they can fix a truly rusty car!! I would like to see a couple of close up pics of gas tank and filler. A good fun show to watch. Thanks Allan for making available. -10 right now, Winter still Sucks:012:


Amphicar Expert
WaveBloke, yes it's a good show, although like all TV things it didn't really reflect what happened ! I did a lot of the work myself (which is why I don't really look convincingly surprised during the presentation at the end). The car wasn't really finished, no brakes, cooling system bypassed, really bad clutch judder and a bunch of other problems. It conked out during the filming at the Marina (kink in fuel pipe) so rather than fix it they just reveresed the image - you can see the registration plate is backwards in the final scene.

Yes the external filler works well - I'll dig out details - there are also a bunch of other mods I copied from my everyday Amphicar.

They were right about "most flooded town" Upton upon Severn is flooded again, I'm just about to get Amphicar out to do the school run. The road between home and school is flooded to about 5 feet deep for around a mile so it's a nice cruise. You do have to watch for obstructions, the attached photo shows a non-phibian who attempted to use the road as the floods were starting. If the water is going up these obstructions can sometimes be nudged out of the way, this one was in a place I could easily get around.

David C


Is it just me, or is David's attachment not there?
Since the forum move, things have been acting strange for me every now and then.


New Member
No it didn't come thur for me either. I have had several like that then I check back a day or two later and it's there.


Amphicar Forum Admin
Staff member
Note that actual photos are not distributed via email, only the links to those images.

For example,
Attached to this message is IMGP3526_640x480.jpg

This is intentional for two reasons. Several of our email subscribers rely on dial-up or even handheld devices to get the posts. 2nd, sending large volumes of image files would be tough on the severs.

The little red X's, as explained previously, are nothing more smiley faces :) that got stripped out. Updated version of software (in a few days) should fix that.



New Member
I enjoyed the show, they sure didn't indicate all the work required for
the details, such as finding bits of custom trim, instruments & unique
parts etc.,etc., I guess that was your job. How 'complete" was the car
when found? How long did the project last? How much do you think they
paid for the restoration? Were the restoration shops paid or did they do
the work gratis? I presume the car is still/now yours?
Dave on Wolfe Island.

PS to Mike. This new system sure fills up the inbox fast. Isn't there
any way to group the daily messages into one email as was done before? DF


Amphicar Forum Admin
Staff member
You guys should also check out the "Amphibious car Video" that shows up on some of the Google ads here. Three guys each try to build their own amphibious vehicles out of regular cars (A VW Van, Toyota Pickup, and a Triump Herald). The results are far from a complete success but are extremely funny.


Amphi Guru & Former IAOC President
You guys should also check out the "Amphibious car Video" that shows up on some of the Google ads here. Three guys each try to build their own amphibious vehicles out of regular cars (A VW Van, Toyota Pickup, and a Triump Herald). The results are far from a complete success but are extremely funny.

That video is from the best car show ever! That is "Top Gear" and it's on BBCA (BBC America). It's always got some good info and many laughs. My favorite is where they place a Toyota Hilux truck on top of a 15 story building that got imploded and after it fell, they actually got it running!. They are nuts!

I saw the Salvage Squad last night and it was a good show. David, was that where the car was found? It looked staged. I could see where the car had some recent work done and the straw stuffed in the headlight bucket was a sure give-a-way. Do you have the VIN for it? (Or do I have that VIN already?) It was good to see new vintage Amphi film and the 2 guys who crossed the channel in 1965.

The "restorer" did not impress me. I can't believe anyone would have installed the fuel lines straight up as they did with a kink rather than at a 90. When welding in new 1/4s, he did not cut a little higher to hide the seam behind the panel brace. A simple but effective way to improve the appearance. Why not pull the starter out and fix it rather than beating it over and over on national TV? The scene while they were in the water with smoke bollowing out of the engine cover was not a good way to show off a new restoration either! Typical TV show, it happens in the editing room.


Amphicar Expert
Hi John, yes Top Gear have done two Amphibious shows, the first across a lake the second across the English Channel. The vehicles used match the presenter personality. James May has an old fashioned sailboat (originally a Triumph Herald). Richard Hammond has a homely motor cruiser made out of a VW camper bus. Jeremy Clarkson chose a truck with a huge 500hp outboard motor on the tailgate.

Yes the Toyota Hilux feature was also great. As well as dropping it from the roof of a 40 floor building that was being demolished they set it on fire and drowned it at sea and it still ran. Theory is- like in the movie Christine - the Hilux is so strong you can't kill them. On the back of that they recently drove an '07 model Toyota Hilux up through the artic circle and parked it on top of the North Pole. First time that has ever been done. Top Gear is the worlds most downloaded motoring show on the Internet and always well worthwhile watching. It is so popular in the UK there is now a satelite channel hear that shows all the episodes back to back.

Re Salvage Squad, yes, not the same quality as Top Gear but the Amphicar show was good. I must write up what really happened for the club newsletter but to answer a few questions.

Yes the discovery was staged, car had been in barn for 20 minutes. It had already been part restored. The doors and hood / trunk had been done well and were removed for the "discover" photos and some rotten ones were fitted, that is why they change colour at one point in the show.

They spent $25K on the restoration - but that all went in to body and paint. They did that very well. All joints were sealed with lead and no ripples when you look down the sides. The reason they did the quarters that way is I supplied them with repair panels from the German club. These have the correct profile at the bottom but are shorter than the ones available in the US. (Before anyone asks there are no more of those German repair panels available).

After the bodywork the money had run out so everything mechanical was lashed up - the engine is my spare. The starter thing was staged, they wanted to replicate the Faulty Towers scene where John Cleese hits his Austin America with a branch when it won't start.

The car had some serious leaks as the door seals were never fitted, the smoke I think was paint burning off the muffler but it could have been one of a number of things. It's pretty much undrivable because they fitted the driveshafts splines 90 degrees out - and the clutch is awful.

Filming was 4 years ago. Car hasn't done much since it was finished, I pull it out of the garage and change the fluids and wax it etc at least once a year. I'm going to need to strip it and put it together properly but no big problem - I'm happy that the money went on the body and was done well. Only really annoying part is the guy they used for chrome destroyed the vent window frames - luckily I spotted it and stopped the rest of the chrome going there. I was involved throughout the restoration as they had a few problems - which is why I didn't look surprised at the end. Oh and of course it didn't drive back to me from London. It was never finished to the point where it was road legal.

The show isn't on any more. The format didn't really work, TV people these days work to strict budgets and hate the unknown / unbudgeted. I had to tip at least $10K of my own cash in to the project to get it finished to the point the "reveal" could be filmed, some of the vehicles never got finished as their owners refused to do that.

David C