Author Topic: ANOTHER ex microcar 'museum' car??? My new Prinz  (Read 7688 times)

adi

  • Quite Chatty
  • ****
  • Posts: 129
ANOTHER ex microcar 'museum' car??? My new Prinz
« on: June 05, 2011, 08:59:22 PM »
Good morning people! Been a while.

I got a NSU prinz IV today, which, apparently, came from a museum at some point. I thought that was pretty cool, till I remembered the old owner said it came from an auction from the Microcar museum, which I assume is THE microcar museum, the same people who mysteriously forgot where my Heinkel came from (even tho they owned it), and have public relation skills that are EVEN worse then mine, and seem to have kept half of their stock (I mean 'exhibits) in damp sheds, etc etc. Unless there is more then one microcar museum in the UK?

Apparently this thing was even an exhibit.

Anyway, the Prinz has a little name tag/pin badge (the kind that people wear at shows to identify themselves I guess) in the glove box, which is a Isetta/Heinkel type shape silhouette with the name ''something Cooper'' on it. I don't remember the first name, and the badge is back at the garage with the Prinz, for some reason I think it may be Mike, but the guy who delivered it was called Mike, and my brain is kinda broken, so maybe im just getting them confused.

The fact that the name badge is in the shape of a bubble car would I assume mean that it was at some microcar rally or something. Anybody happen to know this Prinz, or Mike (?) Cooper? Maybe he would be happy to be re-united with his name badge?

I know its a real small world when it comes to microcars, and everybody knows everybody, so anybody recognize this?



Strangely enough, this car is in very good condition.
« Last Edit: June 05, 2011, 09:01:37 PM by adi »

Jim Janecek

  • Prolific Poster
  • *****
  • Posts: 913
Re: ANOTHER ex microcar 'museum' car??? My new Prinz
« Reply #1 on: June 05, 2011, 09:15:00 PM »
yep, that is the same car sold for a Hammer price of £1300 in October 2008:
http://www.goldingyoung.com/catalogues/MS181008/page1.htm

find lot #15


adi

  • Quite Chatty
  • ****
  • Posts: 129
Re: ANOTHER ex microcar 'museum' car??? My new Prinz
« Reply #2 on: June 05, 2011, 09:52:39 PM »
Wow. I ended up with two cars from the same place? Its a small world I guess!

Anyone know who Mike Cooper is?

Bob Purton

  • Prolific Poster
  • *****
  • Posts: 5154
    • Inter microcar
Re: ANOTHER ex microcar 'museum' car??? My new Prinz
« Reply #3 on: June 05, 2011, 10:59:01 PM »
Yes, MIke and Paula Cooper are the museum owners.

adi

  • Quite Chatty
  • ****
  • Posts: 129
Re: ANOTHER ex microcar 'museum' car??? My new Prinz
« Reply #4 on: June 05, 2011, 11:47:01 PM »
Ooooh, interesting.

So I guess he would totally deny ever seeing the car, right? That seems to be their usual policy for vehicles that they had in the past. Don't know anything, wasn't even there, car? what car? Who are you? What?  ;D

Luckily this car has a live identity, so I don't need to rely on previous owners to find out it's history.

That's pretty cool tho. Why would his name badge be in the glove compartment?

It came with a bunch of spares, including two sets of spare points in the glove compartment, a load of NOS stuff (mainley service bits, as well as brake parts), and various stuff like that, and looked like it has been very well looked after. As far as I can tell, it's unwelded.

Could it be that the guy himself owned it?

Has anyone here actually ever been to the microcar museum, before that auction? What was it like? I am kind of curious now, because from general gossip I assumed that the microcar museum was just a front for selling bubble cars, however this car looks like it was pretty much immaculate! It looks like the kind of thing you would see in an actual real museum.

It starts and drives and everything. I took the master cylinder off today, and underneath was regularly waxoyled and looked pretty much perfect. To be honest, I don't think I have seen many tax exempt cars in this condition.

I can't remember what mileage it had on it, but it wasn't very much.

Also its had a few subtle period mods, like those fog-lights (complete with old fashioned switches), and an old vacuum gage.

The most intriguing thing about it is that it has a tow bar with electrics. I don't know what the hell you can pull with 600cc, I can't imagine it can pull itself very well, let alone anything else, but it definitely has a tow bar. It looks reasonably well fitted too, with the structural bar going between the rear chassis legs being hidden behind the rear valance, so there is no big metal bar sticking out, just the tow ball.

I am pretty happy tho, I swapped a 1200 beetle project with no engine (but freshly restored) for it.

Bob Purton

  • Prolific Poster
  • *****
  • Posts: 5154
    • Inter microcar
Re: ANOTHER ex microcar 'museum' car??? My new Prinz
« Reply #5 on: June 06, 2011, 08:44:11 AM »
Hi Adi. Of course we have all been to the museum, it was great! Many lovely cars, most belonging to the museum, some on loan but they also had a wing that held some unrestored cars too which was equally interesting. You sound very cynical, the museum was not a front for selling cars. I can fully understand people not wanting to get involved with buyers after vehicles have been sold at auction, thats one of the prime reasons for selling something at auction, its anonymous because you are selling through an agent and should not have to have any dealings with buyers afterwards. The auction as I understand it was a means of making a fresh start with a view to a change of premises, I'm not sure if your NSU was an exhibit because other peoples cars were also sold at the same auction. There is a very helpful owners club for NSU cars which I suggest you join or is this one just passing through your hands briefly like the scootacar? When you drive the car you will see that 600cc propels the car very very well and is quite capable of pulling a trailer which is probably why it was fitted, certainly equal to any Beetle. When I drove one I was very impressed an feel the Prinz is most underrated. Maybe you should sell it to me!   Cheers, Bob

Big Al

  • Prolific Poster
  • *****
  • Posts: 4693
  • Ranttweiler, biting the breeze block of banter
Re: ANOTHER ex microcar 'museum' car??? My new Prinz
« Reply #6 on: June 06, 2011, 09:34:10 AM »
  Mike Cooper used to drive this NSU Prinz, which is a rather good example. Indeed I think he attended the Dutch Rally in it which could be where the name badge came from. Amongst his faults as a microcar enthusiast and Museum owner MIke actually drives his restored/good cars when he has the time. Driving museum exhibits is probably frowned on in some quarters these days.

  In line with the majority of Auto Museums in the country the Bubblecar Museum bought and sold cars in part to gain better and better exhibits and in part to subsidise the Museum itself which is a subsistence business normally requiring a benefactor or associated businesses to support the collection being accessible to the public. This is why there are various grants and public money available to aid the creation of such enterprises that clearly cannot exist via self funding. Where good exhibits were obtainable they bought them, where not they got the best they could and if there were a gap they borrowed cars off people like me. Over the years the borrowed stock reduced to be replaced by owned stock.

  Many make an assumption over the Bubblecar Museum Auction. It was a sale of some exhibits and of excess stock prior to moving to a new premises. They never marketed nor intended to sell all their cars. There was an assumption, incorrect, that all the cars they owned were on one site. I was aware this was not so and was included in the fun of watching the nosey search out the secrets and IDs of what was on site over the period of the auction full in the knowledge they were not seeing the full picture. They retained the core of the exhibits required for the different Museum now under construction which has microcars in it but is not the Bubblecar Museum. In part this move is in response to the negative reaction of some of the MIcro world to the Bubblecar Museum, a topic of continuing debate, and in part an inability to increase the size or improve the infrastructure of the Byard's Leap site. I am sure the debate will continue but the fact remains this Museum was created, opened and expanded. This is more than anyone else has managed in Britain. It remains to be seen if the 'price' paid was worth it for all sides. Looking at the bigger picture Europe has lost quite a few Micro orientated museums over the years. Some of those were sold off. I see little difference to those cases and the Coopers save the Coopers are opening again. I think the fundamental error in thinking is to assume a collection or Museum is a safe haven for a car that somehow bucks the rules and costs of living. Market forces and time mean all owners are only custodians of well kept cars and possibly saviours of crappers.

 Your Heinkel was not an exhibit but an item of stock. I do not know the deal it came on but in all probability it came as a part of a job lot containing items Mike wanted for his top line cars and display. I think he cleared out Bob doofer of Citroen fame (remains of 7 Treinkels and the previously Dan Jeavons extensive spares stock) and since Bob was selling restored bodyshells by taking in rusty ones for already repaired ones clearly the IDs, if any, got mixed up, as did the parts of cars, before MIke ever had the cars. This has been discussed before and at the auction the lotting or processing of the cars led to the car not coming as was understood by the auction buyer, known well to me. He had a choice of rejecting the car or accepting the deal as was. He choose not to back it and the window of opportunity to resolve that issue closed at that point. Later he, like Mike, got a better example and decided to out the car which is where you came in, swapping it for the rather nice white Scootacar. So the car came to the Museum as a crapper, remained a crapper stored under canvas, was auctioned as crapper and swapped on as crapper. It is not too surprising that it was, in fact, crap.

The NSU is the precise opposite circumstance as Mike found a minter, bought it in as an exhibit and used it. It actually was slightly cheap at the auction I thought, but then NSU are an under valued marque not aided by having a rather limited Club supporting things. Thus you have the bargain you did not get with the Heinkel. Well done! You will find it far better than a 1200 Beetle, even with an engine! It will tow a 350kg Eriba Puck if you can find one, or other lightweight trailer. Indeed if you drive it you will wonder why you bother with VW until they became badge engineered NSU's!!! Great little cars if not rusty.
Messerschmitt set, Goggo Darts, Heinkel 175, Fiat Jolly, Autobianchi, Fairthorpe Electron Minor, Borgward, Isuzu Trooper
Citroen BX 17TZD & GTI 16v
Held - MG Magnette ZB & 4/44
For sale - Vellam Isetta, Bamby, AC Type 70, Velorex, Church Pod, Reliant Mk5, KR200,  Saab 96, Bellemy Trials, Citroen BXs

blob

  • Prolific Poster
  • *****
  • Posts: 1294
Re: ANOTHER ex microcar 'museum' car??? My new Prinz
« Reply #7 on: June 06, 2011, 11:31:38 AM »
Quote
I assumed that the microcar museum was just a front for selling bubble cars

No chance, prior to the auction the museum had under gone some radical changes, not only showcasing cars, but incorporating loads of period ephemera including their collection of articles/photos which were made easily accessible to visitors, personally I can't wait to visit the museums reincarnation at the new site.  :)
« Last Edit: June 06, 2011, 11:37:05 AM by blob »

richard

  • Rich
  • Prolific Poster
  • *****
  • Posts: 4566
  • Bond ,Gordon,Bruetsch
Re: ANOTHER ex microcar 'museum' car??? My new Prinz
« Reply #8 on: June 06, 2011, 05:37:36 PM »
just by the by bob we havent ALL been to the museum - probably by along way . will get to the new one one day but not exactly local to me and i do get about !
outside of a dog a book is mans best friend. Inside of a dog it's too dark to read .Groucho Marx 1895-1977

Bob Purton

  • Prolific Poster
  • *****
  • Posts: 5154
    • Inter microcar
Re: ANOTHER ex microcar 'museum' car??? My new Prinz
« Reply #9 on: June 06, 2011, 07:20:53 PM »
A true enthusiast would have got there no matter what the distance Richard! ;) ;)  In fact if you look at a map it was closer to you than it was to me!!!!!
« Last Edit: June 06, 2011, 07:28:17 PM by Bob Purton »

Big Al

  • Prolific Poster
  • *****
  • Posts: 4693
  • Ranttweiler, biting the breeze block of banter
Re: ANOTHER ex microcar 'museum' car??? My new Prinz
« Reply #10 on: June 06, 2011, 07:58:24 PM »
Girt staple on the M6 gets in the way though.
Messerschmitt set, Goggo Darts, Heinkel 175, Fiat Jolly, Autobianchi, Fairthorpe Electron Minor, Borgward, Isuzu Trooper
Citroen BX 17TZD & GTI 16v
Held - MG Magnette ZB & 4/44
For sale - Vellam Isetta, Bamby, AC Type 70, Velorex, Church Pod, Reliant Mk5, KR200,  Saab 96, Bellemy Trials, Citroen BXs

richard

  • Rich
  • Prolific Poster
  • *****
  • Posts: 4566
  • Bond ,Gordon,Bruetsch
Re: ANOTHER ex microcar 'museum' car??? My new Prinz
« Reply #11 on: June 06, 2011, 09:10:08 PM »
oh i am an enthusiast bob just not interested in museums - or shows for that matter  :)
outside of a dog a book is mans best friend. Inside of a dog it's too dark to read .Groucho Marx 1895-1977

Big Al

  • Prolific Poster
  • *****
  • Posts: 4693
  • Ranttweiler, biting the breeze block of banter
Re: ANOTHER ex microcar 'museum' car??? My new Prinz
« Reply #12 on: June 07, 2011, 08:19:49 AM »
Is there a camper van museum?
Messerschmitt set, Goggo Darts, Heinkel 175, Fiat Jolly, Autobianchi, Fairthorpe Electron Minor, Borgward, Isuzu Trooper
Citroen BX 17TZD & GTI 16v
Held - MG Magnette ZB & 4/44
For sale - Vellam Isetta, Bamby, AC Type 70, Velorex, Church Pod, Reliant Mk5, KR200,  Saab 96, Bellemy Trials, Citroen BXs

richard

  • Rich
  • Prolific Poster
  • *****
  • Posts: 4566
  • Bond ,Gordon,Bruetsch
Re: ANOTHER ex microcar 'museum' car??? My new Prinz
« Reply #13 on: June 07, 2011, 06:14:56 PM »
dont even start on that one al ! ;D i seem to be one of the last happy campers , also preferring camp cooking to the pub . my family dont ! probably why i do  :D
outside of a dog a book is mans best friend. Inside of a dog it's too dark to read .Groucho Marx 1895-1977

adi

  • Quite Chatty
  • ****
  • Posts: 129
Re: ANOTHER ex microcar 'museum' car??? My new Prinz
« Reply #14 on: June 07, 2011, 08:21:20 PM »
The reason for my problem with the bubble car museum is not because of what the Heinkel is, but because the guy would not even talk to me about it. I am not complaining about the Heinkel, I did after all willingly get it, I am complaining about the total 'talking to brick wall' type responses I got from them.

Before anybody says, yes, I know, LEGALLY they are fully within their right to not tell me anything, since it was auctioned off and etc. But, how much of a mean person do you have to be to actually do that?

I mean, if someone called me up and said ''hey, I have your old VW coupe that you owned years ago, can you tell me anything about it'' I would at least TRY to remember who I got it from, and stuff. I wouldn't even dream of saying ''sorry you didnt buy it from me, i don't know anything about it, not my problem, bye''.

Its all very well and good that its possible to work out roughly where it came from from what you and other people said, but why would the museum not tell me that themselves? Thats what bugs me. All they had to do was say ''your Heinkel came as an incomplete shell from Mike Doofer who deals in citroens, and I took parts off it and sold it on'' or something along those lines. It would have taken that guy exactly 3 seconds and one breath's worth of oxygen, and thats it. Yet, instead of doing that, they chose to pretend to not know anything about it.

It doesn't matter what the car is, or it's condition. Be it a Heinkel, a beetle, or even not a car, I am not talking about the car, I am talking about their totally unhelpful attitude.

As for the Prinz, its coming along pretty well, should be road-legal as soon as I can get some brake cylinders.

Does anybody know what sort of parts the NSU owners club stocks, and what sort of prices? I emailed them asking about it, because I don't want to join just to find out that they only stock limited things and they are more expensive then getting them from Germany, asking them about their parts range, but they havn't replied yet. Anybody a member? On their site they say they stock everything needed to keep cars on the road, does that really mean what it says (I heard owners clubs saying that before and then it turns out that they only have a few NOS doors, some bushes and another seller's items re-branded and for twice the price :lol:). I don't really do the whole owner's club thing, as you know, but would join if they stock a lot of reasonably priced parts, as getting my freind in German to send me out parts all the time is inconvenient.

So far I need: All 4 wheel cylinders, master cylinder (if it's cheaper then the 90 pounds or so to re-sleeve the old one), fuel pump (or rebuild kit if they are rebuildable) and a clutch. I know the wheel cylinders are available from several parts stockists in Europe, but since they are unique to the Prinz they are quiet pricy.

I improvised a tool for pulling the brake drums, and got them off successfully without breaking them.

Also, it seems that at some point in the car's life, somebody majorly messed up one of the spindles, some idiot just forced a nut onto it, cross threading it badly. Luckily it mainley damaged the nut, not the spindle itself, and once I get a die in that thread, it should clean up OK. But, who the hell would do that to such a clean car?? Surely not the bubble car museum guy?

Does anybody happen to know how to change the clutch on these?