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(1) 2 »

1930-1932 Fender Lights - 'market survey'
#1
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Crin
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Hi all,

I picked up a fender light for 1930-1932 models. I have the inexplicable urge to start reproducing them in an effort to grow the light selection offering from the White Glove Collection.

I fully realize I'm going to ask a question that's very hard to answer but I'm gonna do it anyway ...

Does anyone know if these come up in conversation on this forum (from a desire to buy perspective)?

I would also like to know your personal opinion - if you could, would you make the several thousand dollar investment in the tooling?

Thank you in advance,
Crin

Attach file:



jpg  Fender Light.JPG (26.68 KB)
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Posted on: 7/25 10:11
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Re: 1930-1932 Fender Lights - 'market survey'
#2
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HH56
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Just my two cents but I doubt there are enough Packard only sales to make that kind of investment viable.

No idea how Packard specific or identifiable the planned lights might be but if the branding is obvious and there is a way you could also have something removable or as an addition or substitution, make a version also suitable for use with other brands you could advertise more widely.

Another possibility is to offer with any version items needed to use them with one of the aftermarket turn signal setups and maybe get enough crossover from other brands to make the investment pay off.

Posted on: 7/25 10:37
Howard
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Re: 1930-1932 Fender Lights - 'market survey'
#3
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GaryinSC
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I too agree the economic viability of reproducing parts for old cars of this vintage is a losing proposition. However I don't think anyone who has these cars is making a choice on an economic basis anyway. I was able to secure a 32 fender light on ebay and swapped enough parts from my original and the ebay one to make one good one. Even at that I have over $500 in one good light after having to plate and repair a cracked lens rim for$ 175.00. I also was able to secure a new hub cap ( last one that Hirsch had ), and needed two more so off to the plater's again total cost over $ 1,000 to buy used ones and repair two more. So, yes there are people willing to spend considerable dollars for parts when needed, but there is a limit, we just don't know what that limit is. Hirsch told me that to make another run of hub caps they needed to order 1,000 pieces to make it viable, I suspect your light would yield the same numbers, a very tall order in deed. I think that 3D printing and CNC machining is going to yield some very viable parts in low production numbers in the near future.

Posted on: 7/25 16:52
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Re: 1930-1932 Fender Lights - 'market survey'
#4
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DavidM
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Reproductions of those parking lights were available some years ago. I have some damaged ones left over from the restoration of 1930 740 that I would offer to anyone who needs them but I have never seen a request for them in many years. There are differences between the standard and super models.

Posted on: 7/25 17:08
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Re: 1930-1932 Fender Lights - 'market survey'
#5
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Crin
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Thank you for your input! I really appreciate it.

I like the idea of adding a two contact bulb so they're not only marker lights but signals as well.

My biggest deterrent is this thought - who is brave enough to drill a hole right in the top center of their fender to mount a fender light that wasn't originally there? I know I wouldn't do it - at least not sober ... lol ...

I think I would be able to offer them at about $1500 for the pair with all new components. I just saw a very used pair sell on ebay for about $1400.

Thanks again for your input,
-Crin

Posted on: 7/25 17:20
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Re: 1930-1932 Fender Lights - 'market survey'
#6
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Tim Cole
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Back in the day Billy Hirsch bought an entire car for those lights as they were that hard to find. And the parts car had only one lense so his car had one glass and one plastic reproduction. The story was the guy he bought the car from misplaced them, but I always thought that was crap. They were standard on the Custom and Deluxe models.

Years ago people had hubcaps re-skinned. I don't know how the process worked but they looked great and if you compare an original to a reproduction the Packard item is far superior quality. I knew someone with a Buick town car and they had a set of standard Buick hubcaps re-skinned Brewster. They looked exactly like the stock Buick but were labelled Brewster. In these "post industrial" nirvana economy days I guess those artisans are long gone.

About the only product I can think of that is still unique American production are Banjos, although I don't know where Fender and Gibson models are made. I only know there are lots of Americans building Banjos, however Martin pretty much ruined the Vega company which made the best banjo.

As well, the base for those lights changed for 32 so there are two styles of base to think about.

Posted on: 7/26 18:31
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Re: 1930-1932 Fender Lights - 'market survey'
#7
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PackardDon
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Not to burst your bubble but the banjo was based on an instrument from the Caribbean!

Posted on: 7/26 19:13
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Re: 1930-1932 Fender Lights - 'market survey'
#8
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1929PackardGuy
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Another wet blanket here. It's a nice thought, but I can't see how it would ever be economically feasible.

I'm the editor for Mopar Collector's Guide magazine, and while it's apples and oranges, I can say, even most muscle car parts suppliers do not make much money and you have to consider the much larger audience they have. Auto Metal Direct recently sold almost all of their Dodge and Plymouth sheet metal to a longtime parts vendor and aren't going to make anymore. If they can't sell enough stamped steel fenders and door skins for Barracudas and Road Runners, how in the world could you make any money with these lights? They are beautiful, and if you need them you need them, but, very small audience, very high overhead to get them made.

As was previously stated, with the advances in 3D printing and CNC machining, one-off custom parts making for very obscure pieces is going to get more common and cheaper as the years progress. And, as you stated, who's going to drill holes in their fenders if their car didn't come with these? You have a VERY small audience to cater to.

It's a noble thought, but I cannot see any way in the world to recover your money having these made.

Posted on: 7/29 9:49
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Re: 1930-1932 Fender Lights - 'market survey'
#9
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Crin
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Hi,

I appreciate your input.

This may seem odd but I don't run the White Glove Collection to make money.
Yes you read that right.

I'm an aerospace engineer and so is my wife and together we make a very comfortable living. This is more of a hobby for me and God knows I've spent more money keeping it afloat than I should have.

I just really like playing with these old trinkets and it makes me happy knowing that what one person started (Rick Bloomquist) won't just wind up in a trash heap.

I posted this question just to see what kind of interest there might be in these lights. I'm more than likely still going to make them because I'm not well ... lol ...

It might be six months before I have a pair ready. Stay tuned and again I really appreciate everyone's input.

Thanks!
Crin

Posted on: 7/29 10:04
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Re: 1930-1932 Fender Lights - 'market survey'
#10
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Tim Cole
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I wasn't referring to the origin of the banjo which is Africa, I am referring to who are building new banjos. I don't know where the Fender and Gibson models are being built. For all I know it could be Japan where they are nuts about Banjos.

I have a Tenor banjo that is all American made, but it is no tonal match for a Vega played by people like Freddy Morgan and Ed Peabody.

Posted on: 7/29 14:44
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