Rounded Hood Handle (First Continentals)

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Kent Malone
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Re: Rounded Hood Handle (First Continentals)

#16 Post by Kent Malone » Thu Feb 03, 2022 3:09 pm

jim wayman wrote:
Thu Feb 03, 2022 10:52 am
Kent

Here are cars produced on the same date as yours, 4/28/1955.
53427, 53433, 53439, 53440, 53441, 53442, 53448, 53453, 53460, 53465 & 53477.
If you can find the owners of any of these cars, it might help in your search.
Thanks. I got a list from https://www.356continentalregistry.com/database. I will need to do a little investigation to find the owners or I might just post on a couple of Facebook 356 Pre-A and 356 groups. While I am almost sure that my car is most likely one of the earliest to received the re-tooled handle with the pointed tip, it would be useful if we could narrow down the date or serial number of the changeover more specifically.

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Re: Rounded Hood Handle (First Continentals)

#17 Post by Rafael Quepons » Sun Feb 06, 2022 6:16 pm

My 53367. Blunt Handle
Ralfy

55 Continental Coupe
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James Davies
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Re: Rounded Hood Handle (First Continentals)

#18 Post by James Davies » Sun Feb 06, 2022 7:04 pm

Rafael, my photos of 53367 from over a decade ago show it with a pointed hood handle, almost certainly a reproduction. It had been restored in the late 1990s. You sure the one on the car now is original?

I ask because it seems a bit late for a blunt handle, given earlier chassis numbers that already had pointed. Recall that the hood handle was installed at Reutter. Not knowing Reutter build dates on all these cars, chassis number is the best we can go by.

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Re: Rounded Hood Handle (First Continentals)

#19 Post by Jim Wayman » Sun Feb 06, 2022 7:17 pm

53367 would have been early April 1955.
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Re: Rounded Hood Handle (First Continentals)

#20 Post by Rafael Quepons » Sun Feb 06, 2022 9:05 pm

James

The handle you see in the photos in the 90’s is an original A handle that was heavily copper plated and chromed by the renowned Royal Plating shop in Tucson AZ. That replaced the original handle.

The blunt handle in question was in a box of original unrestored parts upon purchasing the car.

With utmost respect to the previous owner.

The body work was so crude. Several layers under the Tucson Palo Verde green “made up color” . Revealed the impression of a blunt handle.
Ralfy

55 Continental Coupe
62 B Coupe
64 C Coupe
58 Cab
Split window buses 67 Deluxe/58 Panel/62 DC/59 Samba
66 911
71 911
78 911 SC
1999 C4
Piles of parts... except what I need

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Re: Rounded Hood Handle (First Continentals)

#21 Post by James Davies » Mon Feb 07, 2022 3:21 am

Thanks Rafael, that's a great data point.

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JohnLiles
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Re: Rounded Hood Handle (First Continentals)

#22 Post by JohnLiles » Fri Feb 11, 2022 11:37 am

Hi Oliver , I have one of the 28 April 1955 cars on Jim Wayman's list VIN 53453 , it has a rounded tip handle that looks original (!)
IMG_1714.JPG
IMG_1714.JPG (1006.56 KiB) Viewed 526 times
1957 'A' and 1955 'Continental Outlaw'

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Kent Malone
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Re: Rounded Hood Handle (First Continentals)

#23 Post by Kent Malone » Fri Feb 11, 2022 7:54 pm

JohnLiles wrote:
Fri Feb 11, 2022 11:37 am
Hi Oliver , I have one of the 28 April 1955 cars on Jim Wayman's list VIN 53453 , it has a rounded tip handle that looks original (!)IMG_1714.JPG
Hi John, I'm glad you posted here in addition to the FB group. I've been trying to determine if my car #53434 built the same day as yours would likely have had a blunt or pointed handle. I looked up the database on https://www.356continentalregistry.com/database and #53453 reports that it was originally white with black vinyl and sunroof. It also reports that it was located in the UK at the time the information was reported to the registry. Your photo shows that it's blue. Do you know any of the history of the car? I'd love to see some additional photos!

***Edit*** I looked at your post history and found some photos and information about your car. Love the sunroof! I haven't read yet how it's a Continental with right hand drive, as "Continental" was a designation exclusively reserved for exported US-market cars ordered through Max Hoffman. The Kardex would have to note Max Hoffman as the importer and a US destination to denote the earliest Continentals and the Kardex started noting "Continental" on the later cars (around June or July, I believe.) Non-US destination cars were not branded as Continentals. I'm curious as to how it's a Continental? Still, it's a good looking "outlaw" that must be a hoot to drive in its lowered state with a 911 engine 8)

Kent

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Re: Rounded Hood Handle (First Continentals)

#24 Post by James Davies » Sat Feb 12, 2022 1:43 pm

I'll add here that delays in production could happen at Reutter or at Porsche. Hood handles were sourced and installed at Reutter. So presumably a car that sailed through production without delays could have the new pointed hood handle by the time production was done at Porsche (and the Kardex filled out), and meanwhile a car that had production problems at Porsche might have been delayed a week or more and had the older blunt handle installed, but eventually made it out the door on the same day. So there may inevitably be a mix at the "switchover", both mixed in chassis number order and in Kardex date.

Good thread!

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Kent Malone
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Re: Rounded Hood Handle (First Continentals)

#25 Post by Kent Malone » Sat Feb 12, 2022 6:09 pm

James Davies wrote:
Sat Feb 12, 2022 1:43 pm
I'll add here that delays in production could happen at Reutter or at Porsche...
I was thinking the same thing, too. Given these cars were coach built versus assembly line, inevitably a clear demarcation is impossible to observe, given those potential production delays you note. But the more "data points" that can be obtained anecdotally by owners reporting their production date, body number and if the car has a handle that it identifiable as an original one, it helps. Of course, even if a handle is an original handle it doesn't necessarily mean it's original to the car (e.g. perhaps it replaced a damaged original handle). But a scatterplot can reveal important information with enough data points. Would be awesome if those with cars built between, say, Tuesday, April 26 and Wednesday, May 4 would report in. That would be interesting!

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Re: Rounded Hood Handle (First Continentals)

#26 Post by JohnLiles » Sun Feb 13, 2022 12:13 pm

Kent - in answer to your questions about my car !

It is a true 'Continental' , the details on the Registry were provided by me ( living in UK ) , but the car was white/black sold by Hoffman in the US - its first 'continent' .... and it went to its second 'continent' in the early 90's when bought by an Australian collector of 356s (!) who had it converted to RHD so he could drive it every day in Australia.

It went to its third continent ( Europe) in 2016 when I bought it . The blue is Speedster Blue , the engine is not from a 911 (!!) but from a 912 , brakes wheels courtesy of a 356C . It kept its original doors , lids , and of course 'boot handle' . Pictured here at the Grossglockner glacier
Image 16.jpg
Image 16.jpg (208.33 KiB) Viewed 475 times
near the 356 birthplace , Gmund , on the route of the final test drive of 356/01 by Karl Rabe
1957 'A' and 1955 'Continental Outlaw'

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Brett Johnson
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Re: Rounded Hood Handle (First Continentals)

#27 Post by Brett Johnson » Wed Feb 16, 2022 2:38 pm

Only slightly off topic, but seals for these handles were thin, flat rubber pads that do not extend beyond the perimeter of the handle.
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Kent Malone
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Re: Rounded Hood Handle (First Continentals)

#28 Post by Kent Malone » Wed Feb 16, 2022 4:04 pm

JohnLiles wrote:
Sun Feb 13, 2022 12:13 pm
Kent - in answer to your questions about my car !
Thanks for the information, John. Wow, your car has had quite a history!!

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Re: Rounded Hood Handle (First Continentals)

#29 Post by Kent Malone » Wed Feb 16, 2022 4:06 pm

Brett Johnson wrote:
Wed Feb 16, 2022 2:38 pm
Only slightly off topic, but seals for these handles were thin, flat rubber pads that do not extend beyond the perimeter of the handle.
Great reference photos!

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Re: Rounded Hood Handle (First Continentals)

#30 Post by Brett Johnson » Wed Feb 16, 2022 5:12 pm

I can recommend a book...
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