The 1907 Larz Anderson Fiat has been invited to the Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance (the exposure they will receive from it will be very beneficial) and we hope you will help out with our very first fund raising campaign to help them. The Fiat needs new tires and tubes and we are asking The Old Motor readers and friends to help them. Paul Russell and Company, Mort Huber, Binney Beale and others along with ourselves, have already stepped forward and donated enough to the Larz Anderson Auto Museum to pay for more than two of the tires already, but they need your help, to fund the remaining sixteen hundred dollar cost of the rest of the tires, tube and flaps.
Follow this link directly to the Larz Anderson website were you can donate by credit card or mail. If you donate by mail enclose a note that it is for the 1907 Fiat. The cost for the transportation out and back has already been taken care of by a donation and The Old Motor has also donated all of its time and facilities to help them out. Please remember that any amount you can help with will count and add up. Read along below were you can see some of the process to removing the old tires and tubes.
The Fiat can be seen above in our workshop (top) where we have already removed all of the old tires and tubes, cleaned the rims and have three of the new tires already mounted and on the car.
What has been found inside of the tires can be seen in the bottom right hand photo. Some well-meaning volunteer may have used a wire-wheel brush to try to clean the rims when these tires were put on some 50-60 years ago. In each tire we are finding about a dozen pieces of stainless steel wire that had broken off of a brush and have found the way into the inside the tires. In addition to that, about a half a cup of rust and other small objects, along some small pieces of metal debris have been found.
The rims on the car are Continental clincher rims, that have been converted into split-rims. The two front tires (just above) are very old Dunlop clincher or beaded edge type of tires and are the correct 880 x 120 mm. If you are new to early cars, note how the bead of the tire is rounded. This rounded-bead fitting into the c-shaped edge of the rim along with them being slightly smaller than the rim size and the air pressure are what combine hold them onto the rim.
The rear tires that were on the car (seen just above) are some very old, heavy-duty 8-ply truck and bus tires that are an incorrect 35″ x 5″, inch size straight-side tires that are about 1/2″ smaller than the rim size and have been stretched and forced on to the rims. The center photo (above) shows the straight side bead as opposed to the correct clincher type seen on the front tires (at the top). On occasion this clincher groove has been filled in with rope to make it easier on the bead of straight side tires, without it the rim will cut into the tire and the tire will also rotate on the rim and tear off the valve stem.
The rear tires were close to impossible to get off the without harming the rims. We could have cut them off, but chose instead to save them as they are part of the history of the car. Both rear tires being 8-ply truck tires, have a side walls that are over 1/2″ thick and being 80-90 years old are dried out and very inflexible. It was a long and very hard job to get them off intact, without bending or harming the rims, but with some patience it was eventually accomplished. Very soon it will be on all four new tires and tubes and we will show you more of this fine cars features in photos.
In the mean time, please contribute to the Larz Anderson Auto Museum if you can, as they count totally on donations to carry on their educational mission. In the future The Old Motor is going to continue to support them and we are working with them to help start a Preservation Fund, which can be used for the other needs of the core Anderson Collection of Automobiles in the future.