c.1908 Chicago Motor Buggy 14hp Type 112 High Wheeler Registration no. to be advised Chassis no. 470A Engine no. 470A
According to 'The Standard Catalog of American Cars 1805-1942', the Black Manufacturing Company of Chicago, Illinois displayed its first automobile at the Iowa State Fair in 1908, taking $50,000 worth of orders. The company offered two product lines initially: the range of 14hp, 69½" wheelbase cars being marketed as the 'Chicago Motor Buggy' and the more expensive 18hp, 75" wheelbase models as simply the 'Black'. Both were powered by twin-cylinder air-cooled engines and featured chain drive and solid rubber tyres. An alliance with the Crow Manufacturing Company of Elkhart, Indiana saw a four-cylinder model the Black Crow added to the line up for 1909. Unfortunately, a dispute with its partner effectively finished Black, which made no more vehicles after 1910.
The vehicle offered here is an example of the Chicago Motor Buggy 14hp Type 112, a two-person runabout priced at $450 when new. An original sales brochure supplied with the car states that the one-gallon fuel tank is good for 30miles and claims a speed of 25mph. Lubrication is by means of crankcase pressure and the suspension is believed to be made of brass, though this is currently painted cream. This car is believed to be one of only 13 surviving Type 112 models from a total of 18 Blacks known to exist, including one of which is housed at the Brussels Motor Museum. It was bought by the current vendor from the USA in 2007 as a non-runner, the former keeper Mr Ronald R Hyland of Oregon having owned the car from 1977. (It should be noted that the US registration papers record the manufacturing date as 1904). Used sparingly, the high wheeler is said to run strongly, with all gears working, while the interior was renewed circa five years ago. A UK V5C registration document has been applied for.
As well as the original sales brochure the car also comes with a detachable folding hood, which is working and complete but would benefit from re-covering. A pair of (believed original) period paraffin side lamps is included also. Eligible for a host of Veteran Car Club events including the popular 'Creepy Crawly', this would make a fascinating addition to any motor house.
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