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Refurbishment & Restoration of Vintage Original Auto Radios at Classentials

1969 Continental Edison PO-GO FM Citroën DS Blaupunkt Solingen Peugeot 304 404 refurbished restoration classentials vintage original classic car auto radio radios

Classentials stocks a large variety of beautifully refurbished vintage original classic car auto radios. Our ‘hallmark’ radio is the fabulous high-end Blaupunkt Frankfurt model series of the period 1965 – 1976. A very well build and highly modular radio which can be adapted (with different fronts and knobs) to look fantastic in a variety of classic (sports) cars of the 1960s and 1970s. Regretfully these 50+ years old radios do not grow in trees aplenty… We are sourcing complete, working and defective radios and parts all round Europe to be refurbished / restored in our workshop and to be repaired by our experienced technician. It takes us about 4-8 weeks before a radio can be added for sale on the Classentials website. In case you have one or more (complete) vintage 1960s / 1970s Blaupunkt, Becker, Philips, Continental Edison radios or PARTS laying around in your company or at home; please contact us in case you want to clean house! Pictures of the items are appreciated!

“We BUY vintage Blaupunkt radios and parts for repair and restoration!”

Currently four radios are being refurbished in our workshop. The two radios pictured on the work-bench are being cleaned inside and out. In the picture (left) you see a VERY rare and sought after 1969 Continental Edison with the FM channel for Citroën DS, for which a push-button has to be sourced or made by hand. On the right you see a 1968 Blaupunkt Solingen for 1960s Peugeot models like the 304 and 404.  Futhermore, a 1969 Continental Edison PO-GO (no FM) for Citroën DS and a high-end 1965 Blaupunkt Frankfurt W with external amplifier are in the works. Both need rare parts so it may take a while for them to be ready! “Enjoy the Ride” and have a look at our vintage auto radio sales collection!

Very truly yours,
Marc Vorgers

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RARE and extremely RARE vintage original ALFA ROMEO user manuals

very rare vintage original alfa romeo user manuals giulia gt gta gtc veloce

We have purchased a splendid collection of vintage original Alfa Romeo user manuals which have been added to the Classentials “book-store”. All these user manuals are in the French language. Original 1960s and 1970s Original Alfa Romeo user manuals are rare and in this collection we have some extremely rare specimen. In the picture you see the 7/1965 Alfa Romeo Giulia Sprint GTA manual, the 4/1963 Alfa Romeo Giulia SS (Sprint Speciale) manual, the 3/1965 Alfa Romeo Giulia GTC manual supplement, the 12/1969 Alfa Romeo GT 1300 Junior (Scalino) manual and the 5/1971 Alfa Romeo 1750 GT Veloce manual. The manuals are in very good to superb condition for their age. Below I have listed all the available Alfa Romeo Giulia, Spider and Berlina manuals which are available for purchase. UPDATE: Visit the ‘MANUALS’ sales page!

“Original Alfa Romeo user manuals are rare and in this collection we have some extremely rare specimen”

Alfa Romeo User Manuals (French Language)

  1. Alfa Romeo Giulia Sprint GTA, edition 7/1965
  2. Alfa Romeo Giulia SS (Sprint Speciale), edition 4/1963
  3. Alfa Romeo Giulia GTC, edition 3/1965
  4. Alfa Romeo GT 1300 Junior (Scalino, rarer intermediate model), edition 12/1969
  5. Alfa Romeo 1750 GT Veloce, edition 5/1971
  6. Alfa Romeo Spider 1600 (Duetto), edition 7/1967
  7. Alfa Romeo Spider 1300 Junior (Duetto), edition 6/1968
  8. Alfa Romeo 1750 Spider Veloce (Coda Tronca), edition 7/1970
  9. Alfa Romeo 2000 Spider Veloce (Coda Tronca), edition 10/1971
  10. Alfa Romeo 1750 Spider Veloce (user manual supplement), edition 1/1968
  11. Alfa Romeo GT 1300 Junior (user manual supplement from chassis 1.260.001), edition 4/1971
  12. Alfa Romeo Giulia 1300, edition 9/1964
  13. Alfa Romeo Giulia TI (user manual supplement), edition 7/1966
  14. Alfa Romeo Giulia TI, edition 10/1966
  15. Alfa Romeo Giulia 1300 TI, edition 4/1969
  16. Alfa Romeo Giulia Super, edition 4/1969
  17. Alfa Romeo 1750 Berlina, edition 1/1971
  18. Alfa Romeo Giulia Super (user manual supplement), edition 3/1971
  19. Alfa Romeo 2000 Berlina, edition 8/1971

Very truly yours,

Marc Vorgers

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Vintage Dashboard Jewelry…

vintage dashboard jewelry alfa romeo gt 1300 junior bertone blaupunkt frankfurt classic car auto radio

Now what? You must be thinking reading the title of this blog post. Vintage dashboard jewelry is how I prefer to think of vintage auto-radios from the late 1950s, 1960s and early 1970s. Superbly engineered old-school electronic technology fronted with beautifully shaped chrome ‘facings’ and finely detailed knobs and radio scales. My classic motor-cars do not feel complete without a vintage radio looking at me from the dashboard. Now I have to admit that I scarcely listen to radio programmes driving my cars, usually one does not travel alone in a classic car, petrol talk galore with friends and discussing the scenery when on the road with my better half. When driving alone I prefer to enjoy the sound of the sports engines; four-, six- or eight-cylinder soundtracks cannot be bettered by anything! So every now and then I try to pick up the hourly news broadcast, and driving at night I just turn on some background music… This for one reason only: To have the lights of the dial light-up with the rest of the gauges on the dashboard. Only in classic cars with an indifferent (boring) engine-sound I will crank up the volume to enjoy some good music!

“My classic motor-cars do not feel complete without a vintage radio looking at me from the dashboard.”

A classic car just needs a fabulous looking radio in the dashboard in my opinion, only race-bred sports-cars must do without for the sake of weight saving and because you will not be able to hear any music at all… Choosing a vintage radio for your car can be a difficult process. First you have to find one in excellent and working condition! Then the radio has to be from the right period to match your classic ride. Usually you can take the year of build from your car, let’s say 1969, then a radio from the period between 1967 and 1973 will look ‘period-correct’ in the dashboard. Then you find that 99% of the 1960s and early 1970s radios are MONO units, STEREO models were just introduced and extremely rare. I do not mind playing the radio via the standard dashboard speaker only, a second speaker can be easily added and placed on or in the parcel shelf.

“The Blaupunkt radios, being universal units, could (and can) be modified at the front by different face-plates, dial surrounds and knobs, this changing the entire look of the radio.”

Most vintage radios of the 1950s – 1970s were standard models for any car. The German brand of Blaupunkt however, manufactured radio-units which could be ‘adapted’ to ‘blend-in’ / to stand-out and to fit in any car or model perfectly because of their modular structure. The Blaupunkt radios, being universal units, could (and can) be modified at the front by different face-plates, dial surrounds and knobs, this changing the entire look of the radio. The Blaupunkt Frankfurt model you see pictured above in my 1969 Alfa Romeo GT 1300 Junior is such a modular unit. The radio is a 1970 Frankfurt with a 1965-1969 chrome face-plate and 1970 type black rubber buttons. I could add more chrome by adding earlier buttons but that would be too much for my taste. If I fancy I can always exchange the faceplate for a somewhat slimmer chrome model, also with black inserts under the knobs. This playing around with vintage radios made me a fan of Blaupunkt. It is a great pastime to find the best front / knob combinations, and now I am doing that here, for you, in the Classentials web-shop. In the Vintage Radios chapter you will find a fine selection of refurbished Blaupunkt radios and other fine classic brands. All the Blaupunkt models, exept the basic Solingen model, feature a special DIN socket at the rear through which in the past cassette players were connected. Today in the ‘digital era’ this DIN connection makes possible to connect your smartphone, Ipod or any other ‘playback’ device (featuring a 3,5 mm jack socket) to the vintage radios. This to listen to your own music files or to stream music or play digital radio channels from a phone app.

…You might instead choose to install a modern ‘plastic chrome’, ‘retro’ radio with LED-display in your classic ride… Do you also give your lady-love a chromed plastic ring to celebrate your love for her?

You will find a great selection of refurbished authentic Vintage Radios and accessories at Classentials. In case you have any questions, or special radio wishes: Just ask we are here to help!

Very truly yours,

Marc Vorgers

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Corgi Toys Vintage Model Cars

Corgi Toys 261 James Bond Bonds Aston Martin DB5 Goldfinger

The majority of classic car enthusiasts around the globe have grown up with die-cast toy model cars. Being a youngster one created fantasy worlds in which the CAR played a big role. Most of these childhood cars were played with until they were broken or totally paint-less, cars with working suspension were the favourites of many. The oldest die-cast models in scales around 1:35* and 1:43*, made of Zamak, were manufactured in France and Great-Britain in the second half of the 1930s. In this blog-post I will focus on the British makes and especially on Corgi Toys. Early 1:35* British scale models were made at the Brooklands Motor Course in Weybridge. These ‘True to Scale’ model racing cars were sold under the name SCAMOLD from 1939 until about 1948. Scamold manufactured scale model racing cars and they took measurements from race cars in the paddock at Brooklands! The firm only produced 3 models until the outbreak of WW2: the ERA, the Maserati and the Alta. These models featured independently sprung wheels and they were optionally available with clock-work engines. Nowadays, these models are very rare.

The 1:43* scale model cars were mainly made as accessories to O-gauge model railways. Dinky Toys of England was a pioneer firm which grew to be the market leader in the 1950s. Another legendary firm was Lesney who produced the Matchbox model cars. Lesney started after WW2 and the first models were so tiny that they literally fitted in a ‘match-box’. In the 1960s and 1970s Matchbox became the market leader in the 1:75 model scale category.

“With the introduction of the Goldfinger James Bond Aston Martin DB5 in 1965 Corgi Toys set themselves apart from all the competition.”

In the year 1956 the long standing firm of Mettoy Playcraft (Est. 1933, manufacturer of sheet-metal toys) decided to enter the competition with Dinky Toys. They launched the make named Corgi Toys. Trying to beat a market leader like Dinky Toys in their own game with 1:43* die cast models takes a lot of guts, stamina and… inventivity. Corgi Toys where marketed as ‘The Ones With Windows!’, Dinky Toys models were still made without windows. The scheme worked and Corgi Toys were getting a ‘fan-base’ rapidly. Their next innovations in the early 1960s were spring suspension on all their models. All Dinky Toys could do was follow the examples set by Corgi Toys. At Mettoy they had a team of very creative product developers and engineers. They kept improving on the Corgi Toys models and added detachable hoods, opening doors and lids, and other gadgets to their models. With the introduction of the Goldfinger James Bond Aston Martin DB5 (number 261) in 1965 Corgi Toys set themselves apart from all the competition. This superbly engineered 1:43* scale model featured all the WORKING gadgets from the ‘real’ James Bond car: Spring-powered extendable machine guns at the front, actuated by pushing a tiny button, a spring-powered opening roof-hatch thru which the ‘baddy’ was ejected, and last but not least the armoured steel bullet screen on the boot, also spring actuated by pushing on the exhaust… Never had the world seen a 1:43* scale model with so many advanced working ‘action’ components!

In my opinion the golden years of Corgi Toys were the 1960s. Many stunning models were introduced in this period. In these years Corgi Toys featured the beautiful ‘spun hubs’ wheels and wire spoke wheels. Corgi Toys die-cast models of this period show a magical balance between true to scale reality, fine detail, beautiful finish and robustness for being a toy car. Today top quality model cars of Dinky Toys, Matchbox and Corgi Toys are true collectors items. Some ultra rare models fetching € 10.000+ at auctions. The vintage model car trade resembles the world of the ‘REAL SIZE’ classic and collector cars… With a few differences: model cars don’t need service in a garage and they don’t need petrol. You can have a large collection… on a book-shelf instead of a large barn. The biggest difference: A restored vintage model car is worth nothing to collectors. Only original and excellent to superb (MINT) models are of interest, preferrably complete with a crisp and fresh original box.

You can cherish only ONE of your favourite classic cars, or start a collection! See high quality offerings at Classentials!

Best wishes,

Marc

*The actual scales varied. 1:35 could also be 1:32. The 1:43 scale was anything between 1:43 and 1:55. Corgi Toys scaled up to 1:43 through the years.