29 Oct 2014

Porsches,pubs,beer and other things

Some more great classic vintage Porsche photos taken by Justin Reed's father and supplied by Justin who is in some of the photos.

Many thanks for these Justin.I did not scan them in but I would guess that some were taken on Kodachrome and others on Ektachrome.They are very well preserved.

This photo was obviously taken on the fly-probably photography was not permitted in the factory-but what a contrast to today's pristine robotic assembly line.CAD/CAM has changed everything -for the better-in car manufacturing.It is amazing that Porsche and others achieved the build quality they did given the way cars were designed and manufactured.The best way to appreciate how modern manufacturing has changed cars is to take the door trim off an old Porsche.It is a long job.Loads of small screws and cup washers and small pieces of trim.Even a hardworking German worker would have had to spend some time putting it together.Today's door trims come as one moulded part from an outside supplier with just push on fasteners.It literally takes seconds to fit and there are no rattles or squeeks.

Great atmospheric shots of very tranquil factory surroundings.All seems to be under control although there was obviously a small problem with wheel or tyre supply the day in 1963 the overhead 356 factory parking area shot was taken.Porsche did not have to deal with the almost continuous strikes experienced by British car manufacturers through the 1960's,70's and into the 80's.

In 1974 there was a strike at the Lucas starter motor and alternator factory in Birmingham and at the same time there was a strike at Pilkington Glass who manufactured the windscreens and rear windows.Despite the non supply of these parts the British Leyland factory at Cowley did not stop producing Morris Marinas  -a truly awful car-so the cars were bump started off the production line and those which did not start were pushed off the end of the line.The front and back holes where the glass was missing were covered with polythene sheets held down by sticky tape.The cars were stored everywhere there was space in the factory grounds.And when they ran out of space there they stored them on the works soccer fields.It was November and very soon there were over 15000 cars standing around not finished and many were quickly sinking into mud.

Eventually they ran out of space and they stopped the production line.When the strikes ended it took months for all the cars to be finished and by that time many of the plastic sheets had come loose and many of the cars were full of rainwater....
I remember all this because I was working there at the time.It was character building.

If you are unaware of the Morris Marina take a look at this TV ad.Marina Commercial
If you know the Morris Marina you will have found that hilarious and perhaps also sad.Were they really that naive? I wonder if any Marinas survive.Certainly those featured in the TV ad would have rusted away before the commercial went to air given the way there were driven in seawater.

It was a pretty unusual to find a Porsche parked on the street even in the best parts of London in 1972.And look at the lack of cars parked in Kensington-so different to today.
Porsches were extremely expensive even back then.You could buy two E-Type Jaguars for the price of one 911.No wonder they photographed this one which does look very much like my 2.2.

Mike Evans in the UK was able to identify the pub in the pub shot as the Anglesea Arms in Selwood Terrace South Kensington in London-thanks Mike- and I have included a modern shot of the pub for contrast.It looks much more inviting today.Back in Sept 1972 when Justin,complete with a Porsche badged jacket,and his mum were standing in front of a longnose 911 outside the Anglesea Arms it was, judging by the sign, selling Watneys Red Barrel beer.Today it is a free house selling a variety of beers from different brewers.Watneys Red Barrel and its major competitor Ind Coope's Double Diamond and their companion lagers,Skol and Harp,were just awful slops-you cannot call them beers-and were basically responsible for the emergence of the Real Ale movement in Britain.Double Diamond and Watneys Red Barrel are what happens when the finance department does the brewing.

The 1960's and 1970's were a grim time in Britain.Mediocrity ruled and the big brewers and British Leyland were the front runners.
If you want a taste of Double Diamond times see Double Diamond works wonders .V

What a contrast between the display of the 917 pink pig in an old shed  and my photo of the same car in the beautiful Porsche Museum today.

How about the colour scheme on this 911 Targa? Surely inspiration for all those Targa owners who wonder whether the hoop should be stainless steel or painted black.That's a young Justin standing by the car.What a lucky boy he was.

These two photos above were taken at Sydney's Amaroo Park track - long gone and now another "executive" housing estate.It was a short challenging track and the paddock facilities were very basic and in a natural bowl and on a hot day it was as hot as hades.But it was great fun-particularly in a Mini Cooper S the only car I ever drove there.By the time I had a Porsche it was houses.And those were the days when Kodak was a big cheese and sponsoring motor racing.
The photo below was taken in 1978 or 79 and shows a 935 which was imported by the O'Neill family.Justin believes that it never actually raced locally and was recently being offered for sale in Europe as one of the most lightly raced 935s in the world.

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