Vent Windows and Frames

Tedredamphi

Platinum Subscriber
:032:I just spent hours dissassembling and sandblasting my '64 Amphicar window frames and vent window frames. There's not a spec of paint or rust left on them. Now I'm in a quandry what to do. Do I prime and paint them like originally planned, or take them to a chrome shop? Are the late model chrome window frames the same as early painted frames, or are they different? When did the factory switch over to the chrome frames?
Thanks,
Ted
 

jfriese

Active Member
There's some debate about the "when" but the Chrome/lipped cars showed up in the U.S. about mid year 1965. I like the chrome look but, of course, it's not "correct" for a 64.

John Friese
67 White
67 Red
 

Tedredamphi

Platinum Subscriber
Chrome window frames and "lipped" wheel wells must not have shown up in 1965 as my 1964 has the "lipped" wheel wells and quarter panels, but painted vent windows.
Ted
 

Canadian four amphs

Amphicar Expert
Dawn's 65 has the lip but has painted vents so we left them painted when we redid her car,blue.
I have my theory, They were all built at the same time,, in 2 different factorys but talking to a lady here in Florida whos dad worked at plant says that I,m wrong.
 

jfriese

Active Member
I've been told that the lipped version and the chrome were options available practically from the beginning. I've also heard they came in more than the 4 colors we usually think of. I can't understand why these issues aren't simply established facts by now.

John Friese
67 White
67 Red
 

Ed Price

Member
_____

From: jfriese [mailto:]
Sent: Saturday, March 28, 2009 1:30 AM
To: edprice@cox.net
Subject: RE: [General Amphicar Discussion-t-20368] Re: Vent Windows and
Frames


I've been told that the lipped version and the chrome were options available
practically from the beginning. I've also heard they came in more than the 4
colors we usually think of. I can't understand why these issues aren't
simply established facts by now.

John Friese
67 White
67 Red



The fact that many issues of Amphicar variations are not already established
after all these years just about guarantees that we never will pin them
down. We have only the records we already have to go on; I really doubt that
somebody is going to suddenly discover the definitive documentation. I mean,
it could happen, but I'm not holding my breath.

When Amphicar was just starting up, they had to place orders for components.
Since cash flow was always a problem, deals were made to minimize initial
costs. IWK may have been expecting a volume of 20k Amphis per year, but they
still placed minimum orders. For instance, they had to make a buy of 5,000
engines from Triumph, although that proved to be a lifetime supply, and even
some of that order was defaulted on and never delivered.

Other items, like window frames, were probably ordered in smaller lots. It
might have come down to a very local decision about whether to paint or
chrome a lot of 250 frames (maybe a decision controlled by whether the
plater would extend credit <g>).

OTOH, I find it hard to believe that two dies, one each for a lipped and
unlipped fender, would have been bought. Big metal dies are very expensive,
and I think they must have changed them only with great reluctance, forced
by engineering requirements or aesthetics. (And if aesthetics were the
reason, it would have had to be a decision from the very top of IWK.)

Maybe an answer can be proposed by the treatment of spare parts. Maybe at
the beginning, IWK followed the common European practices for spare parts,
keeping x number of fender panels for a given production level. But sales
figures soon proved all the initial volume assumptions to be vastly too
high. As parts deliveries would have been stretched out, and smaller lots
ordered, it would only have made sense to recalculate the spares quantities.
At some point, it may have made more sense to draw some spares down for
production use.

This is a dynamic thing, with the balance of spares and production
continually assessed. A couple of months of good prospects might change the
balance, and the a few more bad months could change it back again.

The VIN record show us that cars were painted by small lots, all in one
color at a time. If there were any colors beyond the known four, then there
should be either a lot more examples, or a big gap in the VIN record. Sure,
there were some special paint jobs, like the green German police vehicles.
And I heard that there was one yellow car produced (although I might just be
passing on a tall tale on this).

I also wonder about the factory paint choices; the red was bright and
saturated. But the green and blue were pastel. That doesn't make any sense,
even in the 50's were very partial to pastel car colors. And the white was
more of an ivory; it never really had a sparkle to it, and never looked
really clean.

Well, speculation is cheap, fun and endless!


Ed Price
El Cajon, CA USA
WB6WSN
61 Rust Guppy
1987 MB 420SEL
 
S

SplitPersonality

Guest
John -

Since you are apparently knowledgeable on the subject, even if they are as
you say established facts, can you please answer some questions for me
regarding the production factory exterior colors. I have understood that
approximately 50 % of the total production color was Red, about 25 % was White and the
remaining 25 % was more or less split between Blue and Fjiord Green. Is this
close to the presumed color spread ? Also, relative to other colors from the
factory, it seems that I have heard of or seen pictures of a black one with
Hans Trippell on board and a yellow one. How much of the foregoing is correct
and what other colors might have been produced from the factory and in what
numbers and for what reason? Were they special orders or experiments? Is any
of this information backed up by documents or factory production records or is
it partly based on the colors of existing survivors ? Thank you

Victor Nelson with the "Split Personality" near Daytona



In a message dated 3/28/2009 4:31:49 A.M. Eastern Daylight Time,
writes:

I've been told that the lipped version and the chrome were options available
practically from the beginning. I've also heard they came in more than the 4
colors we usually think of. I can't understand why these issues aren't
simply established facts by now.

John Friese
67 White
67 Red





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jfriese

Active Member
Hello Victor,

Your percentages on the colors is also what I have heard over the years. I also heard that they produced an orange one and, of course, the dark green ones for the police.

John Friese
67 White
67 Red
 
S

SplitPersonality

Guest
Thanks for the corroboration John - On a different matter than the colors,
I have been quoting what is apparently accepted that Amphicar produced
approximately 3850 vehicles. I see the note on this Amphicar in Paris states that
the production was 3878, so we are all in the same ball park and nobody knows
for certain. I think the "new" ones that Hugh built have probably skewed the
numbers slightly anyway.

Vic near Daytona


In a message dated 4/2/2009 5:05:59 A.M. Eastern Daylight Time,
writes:

Hello Victor,

Your percentages on the colors is also what I have heard over the years. I
also heard that they produced an orange one and, of course, the dark green
ones for the police.

John Friese
67 White
67 Red





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DavidC

Amphicar Expert
The 3878 figure is accepted as being about right. Something like 3000 cars were shipped to the US. About 100 of the production were RHD, the bodyshells of these were originally LHD. The pedal arrangement is different, it would be very difficult but not impossible to convert a LHD car to RHD. Gord - you will like the next bit - all RHD cars had glassfibre glove box lids and instrument surrounds. Amphicar didn't go to the trouble of getting them made in steel.

All Amphicars were one of the original 4 colours but many of the unsold cars were resprayed and as time went on and the other colours faded (ha ha) in popularity red became the most fashionable colour - along with the black dash. Some later cars were factory finished in black and dark green as well. Some bodyshells were sold when the factory went broke and they were finished in whatever colour the buyer decided.

Original colours for exterior and interior of Amphicar were decided during a research visit to a US motor show in 1959

The original colour chart is scanned on amphicars.com

Generally chrome vent windows were used on later cars but they were an option from the start.

The flat fender was the original design but had to be made of heavy steel to avoid bending. Later cars had the fender with the lip on the bottom, this not only looked better but made the panel more rigid allowing thinner steel to be used so car was a bit lighter - one of the many reasons later cars drive better.

David C
----- Original Message -----
From: SplitPersonality
To: david@manbus.com
Sent: Thursday, April 02, 2009 4:09 PM
Subject: RE: [General Amphicar Discussion-t-20368] Re: Vent Windows and Frames


Thanks for the corroboration John - On a different matter than the colors,
I have been quoting what is apparently accepted that Amphicar produced
approximately 3850 vehicles. I see the note on this Amphicar in Paris states that
the production was 3878, so we are all in the same ball park and nobody knows
for certain. I think the "new" ones that Hugh built have probably skewed the
numbers slightly anyway.

Vic near Daytona


In a message dated 4/2/2009 5:05:59 A.M. Eastern Daylight Time,
writes:

Hello Victor,

Your percentages on the colors is also what I have heard over the years. I
also heard that they produced an orange one and, of course, the dark green
ones for the police.

John Friese
67 White
67 Red





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Jon March

Member
Ted - Im readying to do this same step of rechroming - can you offer any advice or heads up before i start opening up the door & trying to get the vent frames out?

JON



:032:I just spent hours dissassembling and sandblasting my '64 Amphicar window frames and vent window frames. There's not a spec of paint or rust left on them. Now I'm in a quandry what to do. Do I prime and paint them like originally planned, or take them to a chrome shop? Are the late model chrome window frames the same as early painted frames, or are they different? When did the factory switch over to the chrome frames?
Thanks,
Ted
 

jfriese

Active Member
Ted,

I've seen both and don't see any difference at all. I suspect they did it to spruce up the appearance. To my eyes the chrome looks better.

John Friese
67 White
67 Red
 

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