Go Back   Team-BHP > BHP India > Vintage Cars & Classics in India > Pre-War


Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Old 4th October 2009, 03:24   #136
DKG
Senior - BHPian
 
DKG's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: Hyderabad
Posts: 3,706
Thanked: 906 Times
Default

Harit in 1936 a significant event took place in Hyderabad wherein the Nizam celebrated 25 years of his rule. Being rather austere he turned down requests for purchase of new cars and apparently reluctantly sanctioned $500 for the refurbishment of the Rolls. It was sent to the Railway garage (am sure they could have done better!) and modifications carried out to give the car a modern appearance. What you see today is infact a classic reflection of the Nizam's frugal ways marking a special event in Hyderabad. So there's a lot of history attached to the modifications to the car and perhaps it makes sense to not undo them.

I have no say in what happens to these cars Harit or for that matter the carriages. I am just happy that they are safely housed and were shifted with no damage. I also appreciate the estate taking up my suggestion to enclose the cars in glass as a exhibit. They are so fragile and enthusiastic visitors if given access would ruin the cars further. When the Salar Jung museum upgraded some of their sections into modern exhibits I remember I was horrified to see visitors touching rare paintings as they walked around. Can you imagine what will happen when thousands more do that? What about their fondness for grafitti? Its a nightmare

Wasif the Rolls can be started. Ali Taqi periodically was assigned the task of visiting Chiraan and firing her up. I remember him telling me it needed a 24 volt setup. The car has only 356 miles and the Packard has 7000 odd. The Packard may have come in originally for the Nizam's use and remained with Mukkaramjah once he took over. I distinctly remember seeing the car drive by on road no 1 sometime in the 70's. Princess Esra used it occasionally. The prince used the Buick too. It may have come in originally for Ali Pasha's use and passed on to Mukkaramjah when he returned from Europe. The Ford as many have seen was used exclusively by Osman Ali Khan to attend Friday namaz at Public Garden. It too has low miles.

All the cars here will be a restorer's delight as they are mostly complete except for very minor things here and there. If I remember all have their meters intact, all engine parts seem intact. Basically very little missing, if any.

The garage at Chiraan is such an intimate reflection of what is dear to the prince. It was setup meticulously with a full range of equipment including a lathe. He spent much of his time at the garages tinkering with machinery. I also recommended his bulldozer gets shifted but I doubt if they ever will consider that.

Last edited by DKG : 4th October 2009 at 03:30.
DKG is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 4th October 2009, 06:26   #137
BHPian
 
john a milne's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2008
Location: Toronto / Calcutta
Posts: 907
Thanked: 397 Times
Default

[quote=tonrag;1510617]The Fire engine is manufactured by John Morris and sons. It is chair driven, has an external gate gear change, solid tyres and a transmission brake.

Here are some photos I took at the 2008 Statesman Rally in New Delhi. A great treasure indeed.

Thank you for sharing your driving experiences with us, what a great privilege!
Attached Thumbnails
The Nizam of Hyderabad's Collection of Cars and Carriages-24.jpg  

The Nizam of Hyderabad's Collection of Cars and Carriages-img_3577.jpg  

The Nizam of Hyderabad's Collection of Cars and Carriages-img_3575.jpg  

The Nizam of Hyderabad's Collection of Cars and Carriages-img_3580.jpg  

The Nizam of Hyderabad's Collection of Cars and Carriages-25.jpg  

The Nizam of Hyderabad's Collection of Cars and Carriages-img_3585.jpg  

The Nizam of Hyderabad's Collection of Cars and Carriages-img_3586.jpg  

john a milne is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 4th October 2009, 07:02   #138
BHPian
 
john a milne's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2008
Location: Toronto / Calcutta
Posts: 907
Thanked: 397 Times
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by DKG View Post
I don't know Harit, its just a vague feeling, can't quite explain it, but when I see these cars I always invariably feel it would be a horrible mistake to restore them. I can't explain why I feel so. Perhaps its irrational as I cannot explain any logic in leaving them as is. Just a gut feeling that it would be a blunder to restore them.

Perhaps I am a lone voice that sees something very precious in that exhibit. To the visitor bright shining cars would be a real treat. To me it will be one more museum exhibit that you see all around the world. Where on earth exists a family who retain cars in their 100+ year old condition and barring a few exceptions, complete mechanically and otherwise. These cars today are such a rare glimpse into what a 100 year old car looks like. Restored you will never be able to tell what a 100 year old car should look like.
.
I too share the feelings that Special Cars, in good original condition, should be preserved as much as possible apart from doing the necessary mechanical work. Once restored they become "New, Old Cars" loosing their soul and history that reflects the love and care that their owners had bestowed upon them.

Anyone who collects antiques knows that those in original condition and finish are worth significantly more than those restored. The same is found here in North America where cars in good original condition are bring premium prices. Even more so for cars with a historical history.

I recently sold our 1968 Jaguar MK11-340 after 30 years at a price well above the current market value.
It was in the best original condition of any MK11 having placed 2nd with 99.74 points in the JCNA North America Concours Preservation Class 18, open to any Jaguar 20 years or older, and 4th with 99.54 points in Championship Class 9 for MK11s. Check my garage to see photos.
john a milne is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 4th October 2009, 18:27   #139
BHPian
 
Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: Bangalore
Posts: 208
Thanked: 136 Times
Default

The great debate again! Should good original cars be preserved as they are, or restored? Incidentally, we are not alone in engaging in resolving this question. The solution is that there is perhaps no solution. I was in Europe and UK for some time recently and visited a multitude of automobile museums there. What struck me was the premium on originality. The trend today is to preserve what is found in its original condition, however tatty, because this preserves exactly what existed and not a modern imitation of it. This applies both to rare and commonplace cars, though more to the former than the latter. Two examples: A Grosser Mercedes used by Hitler is preserved in exactly the same condition in which it was discovered in the Musee de Le Henri Malatre in Lyon. French soldiers who found the car in Berlin at the end of the warattempted to smash its bulletproof window glasses and succeeded only in cracking it. No attempt has been made to change that. At the other end of the scale is a Citroen 2 CV in the same museum, which was used for a round the world expedition preserved exactly as it was on the completion of its journey, with dents and dirt streaks intact. I've posted photos to illustrate these examples.
I would therefore favour the preservation of the Nizam's cars in their current condition. The reason is, that there will be several restored cars of the same vintage about, but few that have retained their originality in this fashion. At best, what can be done is to replace the more recent and obviously unoriginal additions, such as the jeep wheels and suchlike, with original fittings. What is also imperative, is to prevent further deterioration.
Attached Thumbnails
The Nizam of Hyderabad's Collection of Cars and Carriages-zzj_dsc03009.jpg  

The Nizam of Hyderabad's Collection of Cars and Carriages-zzj_dsc03010.jpg  

The Nizam of Hyderabad's Collection of Cars and Carriages-zzj_dsc03013.jpg  

The Nizam of Hyderabad's Collection of Cars and Carriages-zzj_dsc03015.jpg  


Last edited by tonrag : 4th October 2009 at 18:31.
tonrag is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 4th October 2009, 19:00   #140
Distinguished - BHPian
 
harit's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2008
Location: Mumbai
Posts: 3,922
Thanked: 2,566 Times
Default

Respected DKG, John and Tonrag,

As said, the debate goes on. And we have agreed to disagree. But, we have also agreed that the roof/windshield of one Napier should be fixed and the Fiat's wheels attended to.

For India, veteran cars are rare cars. I would say that the Rolls be given a sympathetic restoration, the roof lining must be looking like the cobwebs the palace had before restoration. Why did they not keep the original cobwebs in the palace?

I would agree with all three of you if the basic substance which has survived was in a better shape. The Jag sold by John could never have been in similar condition, it would have ended up in that yard of which he had sent us pics. Yes, an original car which shows some wear, but is otherwise totally original should be left as it is. But these cars are, to use polished language dilapidated, or junk if we use proper terminology.

The 2CV or the Merc have been left as they are as these are original time wraps but in reasonable shape. If you visit another Museum, Sinsheim in Germany (the place which has both Russion and Anglo- French Concorde planes, they too have a Hitler or some other Nazi car where they removed the original bullet proof glass, replaced it on the car but kept the damaged glass in a display. Remember, 2CV's and these Mercs are not paricularly rare in Europe. And the cars shown as an example are in a reasonable good condition.

I dare to suggest, the worst car should be restored first and the others atleast given some TLC (tender loving care). In India Veterans are rare, so rare that some owners have gone to extreems to get them on the road. Thereafter we can again debate.

In the end, the verdict of a princess will clinch the issue.

Cheers harit

Last edited by harit : 4th October 2009 at 19:03.
harit is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 4th October 2009, 21:33   #141
BHPian
 
Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: Bangalore
Posts: 208
Thanked: 136 Times
Default

Harit, you're very persuasive! After reading your post, I went back and took a long hard look at the pictures on page 1, particularly of the Royce, the Fiat and the Napiers, to precisely gauge what I would do, if I were given a chance. Yes, all things considered, I would do a sympathetic restoration. First, here's what I won't do: No tinkering, there isn't much corrosion and no painting too, there is a nice patina to the cars as they are.
However, we must admit that the upholstery of the Royce is shot to hell. All things considered, I don't think I'd retain it as it is today, with the entire cloth cover gone and the guts spilling out. I'd restore it very carefully, using as exact a match to the original cloth as possible. The same goes for the roof. I might also build up the broken parts of the latticework on the rear of the roof.
From the evidence of the pictures of the interior of the Fiat, there might be a possibility of retaining the existing leather upholstery that survives, with a patchwork of exactly the same kind of leather to build up the missing parts.
Of the Napiers, the first one can be preserved in as original a condition as possible, with a restoration on the lines of that suggested for the Royce and the Fiat. However, If there are two Napiers, why not fully restore the second Napier to its former glory? Its totally damaged now and retaining it in its present condition would surely be a pity.

To come back to the Royce, the real agonising decision is what to do with the modifications made to its running boards and the front apron. Frankly, whatever might be the history behind these changes, they look utterly ghastly, particularly if one compares them with the pictures of the original. I might just throw history to the winds and replace them, and assuage my guilt by making a mock up of the car with those fitted on, a la Shinshiem! Tough decisions for the Princess to make!

Last edited by tonrag : 4th October 2009 at 21:39.
tonrag is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 5th November 2009, 16:25   #142
BHPian
 
traveloholic's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2009
Location: TrafficJamaBad earlier known as Hyd
Posts: 750
Thanked: 225 Times
Default

Mr. DKG, A great write up. Love to know that hyderabad has immense vintage automobile wealth stored. Would love to have a dekko at these vintages at Chowmoholla Palace
traveloholic is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 5th November 2009, 19:37   #143
Distinguished - BHPian
 
Stanher's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2006
Location: Hyderabad, AP
Posts: 6,275
Thanked: 1,445 Times
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by traveloholic View Post
Mr. DKG, A great write up. Love to know that hyderabad has immense vintage automobile wealth stored. Would love to have a dekko at these vintages at Chowmoholla Palace
Some of us incidentally did, on 15th august this year. It was quite good, but for the distance for many and the careful driving through the narrow old city gallies, viz. Lad bazaar, although was thankfully empty that day!

You can check out the pics. in this thread:

http://www.team-bhp.com/forum/vintag...gust-15th.html (Deccan Heritage Vintage Car and Motorcycle Display @ Chowmahalla Palace-August 15th)
Stanher is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 20th November 2009, 21:26   #144
BHPian
 
myashu's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2009
Location: Bangalore
Posts: 28
Thanked: 5 Times
Talking

recently had been to chowmohalla palace in Hyderabad, got to see some cars and bikes (all Harleys) used by Nizams of Hyderabad, some are here

1952 Packard 200 Touring Sedan Deluxe
The Nizam of Hyderabad's Collection of Cars and Carriages-img_1881.jpg

1912 Rolce Royce Silver Ghost
Name:  IMG_1873.JPG
Views: 4621
Size:  72.6 KB

1947 Buick Super convertible coupe
The Nizam of Hyderabad's Collection of Cars and Carriages-img_1882.jpg

Last edited by aah78 : 20th November 2009 at 22:50. Reason: Post moved.
myashu is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 20th November 2009, 22:46   #145
Distinguished - BHPian
 
Stanher's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2006
Location: Hyderabad, AP
Posts: 6,275
Thanked: 1,445 Times
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by myashu View Post
recently had been to chowmohalla palace in Hyderabad, got to see some cars and bikes (all Harleys) used by Nizams of Hyderabad, some are here
Nice pics. We had a Vintage/classic display held there on 15th august. But I couldn't get such proper pics. of the displayed cars because of the crowds there that day!
I remember the glass showcase of either the Packard or the Buick had one pane missing. Good that it's been fixed now.

Last edited by Rehaan : 21st November 2009 at 17:51. Reason: Posts moved to appropriate thread.
Stanher is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 23rd November 2009, 12:06   #146
BHPian
 
myashu's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2009
Location: Bangalore
Posts: 28
Thanked: 5 Times
Talking

Quote:
Originally Posted by Stanher View Post
Nice pics. We had a Vintage/classic display held there on 15th august. But I couldn't get such proper pics. of the displayed cars because of the crowds there that day!
I remember the glass showcase of either the Packard or the Buick had one pane missing. Good that it's been fixed now.
My rebel XSi did a wonderful job as the flash used was not been reflected much but filtered out
myashu is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 24th November 2009, 10:28   #147
Senior - BHPian
 
wasif's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: Abu Dhabi (for now)
Posts: 2,932
Thanked: 339 Times
Default

Myashu.

What do you mean by cars and bikes (all Harleys) used by the Nizam.

There are no Harleys there as far as I am aware. There is an Indian Chief to be seen though.
wasif is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 24th November 2009, 12:02   #148
Team-BHP Support
 
karlosdeville's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: Pune
Posts: 9,494
Thanked: 7,396 Times
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by wasif View Post
Myashu.

What do you mean by cars and bikes (all Harleys) used by the Nizam.

There are no Harleys there as far as I am aware. There is an Indian Chief to be seen though.
There was one green Harley, APU regd, which Im sure can be found on this thread.
karlosdeville is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 24th November 2009, 12:51   #149
Senior - BHPian
 
wasif's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: Abu Dhabi (for now)
Posts: 2,932
Thanked: 339 Times
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by karlosdeville View Post
There was one green Harley, APU regd, which Im sure can be found on this thread.
That is an Indian not a Harley
wasif is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 24th November 2009, 12:58   #150
Team-BHP Support
 
karlosdeville's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: Pune
Posts: 9,494
Thanked: 7,396 Times
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by wasif View Post
That is an Indian not a Harley
I am referring to this bike - are you?

The Nizam of Hyderabad's Collection of Cars and Carriages-00.jpg

http://www.team-bhp.com/forum/996474-post35.html
karlosdeville is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply


Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Buses of Contract Carriages / Tourist Buses girishglg Commercial Vehicles 11 2nd April 2012 11:18
hyderabad srisailam nagarjunsagar hyderabad warangal hyderabad pravdr Travelogues 61 2nd May 2010 21:52
Hyderabad Collection-2 karlosdeville Vintage Cars & Classics in India 27 23rd September 2009 13:15
Hyderabad Collection karlosdeville Vintage Cars & Classics in India 44 15th February 2009 23:03
Newbie/Greenhorn from the Nizam City PVS Introduce yourself 12 7th November 2007 13:38


All times are GMT +5.5. The time now is 00:35.

Copyright 2000 - 2017, Team-BHP.com
Proudly powered by E2E Networks