My Car Quest

August 20, 2018

Things From The Far Past

by Mike –

We are all a little sentimental at times, some of us more than others.

Two years ago when I was visiting my mother (about 2,000 miles away) I rummaged around in her storage room and found something that I thought had long been lost to time; the skateboard that I built in 1964 or maybe 1965. She saved it all these years.

Skateboard with Cobra decal

In the photo of the skateboard above you can see a Cobra decal. This decal is an original Shelby American decal direct from the Shelby Cobra factory in Los Angeles brought to me by my father. He also brought us Cobra shirts, a poster, a post card (that I still have – see photos below) and many decals – the decal on the skateboard is the only survivor. The other Cobra decals were proudly placed on bicycle fenders and school notebooks which are no longer with us.

Ford GT40 Slot Car

I still have the Ford GT40 slot car that I assembled and ran in the early ’60s. This slot car had a tough life – it was fast and took no prisoners. It also didn’t stay on the track all the time as you can see from the photos. It ran when parked.

Shelby Factory Postcard-Cobra 427-Front

Shelby Factory Postcard-Cobra 427-Front

 

 

 

 

Ford GT40 Slot Car

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I was a paperboy for the Los Angeles Times and the Los Angeles Herald Examiner in the early to mid-’60s. I needed the money to pay for the slot cars, skateboard and comic books. I was the kid standing on the corner on Sunday morning yelling “read all about it!” and selling newspapers one at a time for 50 cents.

Shelby Cobra Postcard

The back of the Shelby Cobra Postcard

The very heavy papers were pulled around in a very cool wooden wagon which the company took back after my years of service ended. But I kept the money pouch that I wore to carry all the change because it was a cash business (see the photo below).

Los Angeles Times Coin Pouch

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

Also in my mother’s storage room I found the black California license plates that were on one of the family cars when we moved out of California in 1966 (it could have been either the 1940 GMC pickup or the 1964 Mercury Colony Park Station wagon). In California I could use these on another car as long as the car is from the same time.

Black California License Plates

Shelby Cobra Daytona Poster

I had a factory Cobra poster like the one to the right for many years but somehow it too was lost. I was able to find another original Shelby American Cobra poster just like the one I had as a kid and this is it hanging in my office.

What about you – what do you still have from the old days? Let us know in the Comments.

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

Ford GT40 Slot Car

 

 

Summary
Things From The Far Past
Article Name
Things From The Far Past
Description
Here are some items of sentimental value that have somehow survived many decades.
Author

Comments

  1. Great things from a true long time enthusiast. Suspect with its patina, the skateboard could be auctioned off at RM for at least $250,000-$500,000. Just need to put together a good story, document one owner history, perhaps locate the sneakers you wore and throw in the smelly sox mom never washed and instant collector item….. Priceless!

  2. Wayne Watkins says:

    I was driving home from a rugby union match in 1966 in my MGA 1600 when I saw this stunning little gold sports coupe in a Datsun new car dealership . I stopped and asked the salesman ‘ how much is this ? ‘ He said ‘ You can’t afford it as it is handmade and very expensive ‘ . That was the end of the story until in 1992 I saw that car advertised in a Sydney newspaper for more than it was when new and bought it . When researching the history of this car , a Nissan Silvia csp311 coupe , I found that over a four year period the Japanese made 554 of these cars and Australia took 49 , with 10 cars sold to various places , including one to Hawaii and a couple to New Guinea . The rest were sold in Japan . Unfortunately I have no storage any more for the car and am aging 50 years after this car was made and have made the decision to let it go . It is going to an enthusiast in Germany who has discovered another ex Australian delivered car in Germany and has fallen in love with its classic style and design . I have in the past 23 years driven this car to many long distance rallies with no problems ever and it will always remain a strong part of my motoring life . Have pics of this car , but cannot figure out how to show them on this site ……………………. HELP

  3. Dump some dirt on the skate board before you take it to auction if you want top dollar. “Dirt as Patina”

    • Bruce,

      I made a big mistake before the GT40 slot car photo shoot. I dusted the car off!

      It had years of dust accumulated and I wiped away decades of history in 30 seconds!

  4. Don Meluzio says:

    Mike, that’s a great story. I thought I knew you pretty well! The money pouch is priceless. Now I understand the Cobra connection. I figured that one day you just decided that you wanted to buy a Cobra. Thanks for sharing.

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