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Thread: NZ Cars - A Cottage Industry

  1. #161
    Semi-Pro Racer Paul Wilkinson's Avatar
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    I have to say, with the greatest of respect, that there are a number of errors and incorrect pictures in Vercoe's book. Maybe this is one of them? Great book though...

  2. #162
    Semi-Pro Racer Paul Wilkinson's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Oldfart View Post
    Very cool, it was ancient memory! Paul, when did you take those photos in Port? My old house is clear in the background!
    The photos from Vercoe side on seem to be 100E hubcaps.
    Is the coupe photo supposed to be one of the Tiki, or does it refer to the text above it?
    Photos were taken in Feb of this year after the British Car Rally. The wife fell in love with Lyttelton....

    I always thought the coupe picture belonged to the text above it but the Tiki caption mentions two versions and the text above relates to the Tojeiro Jaguar which has very different dimensions. I think there was a Tiki coupe and the wrong picture was put in the book. There are a couple of incorrectly labelled cars in the book by all accounts. Still a bloody good effort though.

  3. #163
    Quote Originally Posted by Oldfart View Post
    Very cool, it was ancient memory! Paul, when did you take those photos in Port? My old house is clear in the background!
    The photos from Vercoe side on seem to be 100E hubcaps.
    Is the coupe photo supposed to be one of the Tiki, or does it refer to the text above it?
    My old holiday house is just to the left - were you in the bay next to Diamond Harbour?

  4. #164
    Quote Originally Posted by Paul Wilkinson View Post
    Photos were taken in Feb of this year after the British Car Rally. The wife fell in love with Lyttelton....

    I always thought the coupe picture belonged to the text above it but the Tiki caption mentions two versions and the text above relates to the Tojeiro Jaguar which has very different dimensions. I think there was a Tiki coupe and the wrong picture was put in the book. There are a couple of incorrectly labelled cars in the book by all accounts. Still a bloody good effort though.
    Definitely a good effort, however as a quotable reference there are too many errors. For me the really sad thing the reprint was done with no corrections even after a number of people I know submitted "corrections" on their own cars. It's a great book, just info needs treating with caution (and more checking) before anyone uses it.

  5. #165
    Quote Originally Posted by Kwaussie View Post
    My old holiday house is just to the left - were you in the bay next to Diamond Harbour?
    On Church Bay point, the headland showing in that photo.

  6. #166
    Next question .. tiki was rear engined .. it has a moulded front with no bonnet. if so was it ford engine to vw trans . ??? its all a mystery to me .

  7. #167
    i blew up the picture of the original tiki and in behind the car in the bush is another surprise . looks like another sports car body.

  8. #168
    Quote Originally Posted by kiwi g View Post
    Next question .. tiki was rear engined .. it has a moulded front with no bonnet. if so was it ford engine to vw trans . ??? its all a mystery to me .
    No, front engine on a Ford 10 chassis.
    Unless of course there was more than one variety, which I somehow doubt.
    Last edited by Oldfart; 08-19-2013 at 02:26 AM.

  9. #169
    I have done some research into both these cars and I am pretty sure that Kiwi Gs car is the Anzani Special. Neither the Anzani or the Tiki made it into my book as I was unable to get enough information substantiated before time of print. If there is a second book this car should be in it. Below is a letter that was printed in Classic Driver which will clear up some of the mysteries. In my opinion the Anzani is the car that was created out of plaster see pictures below. I strongly suspect that the Tiki (between 3 and 12 made) is a UK Ashley 750 possibly brought to Bill and Ted by Peter Pallindine (founder of Ashley Cars). He was living in New Zealand around that time and in the process of producing a car called the Falcon in Gisborne and at some stage made a trip to the South Island to sell his body to raise some cash. It is rumoured that the Tiki came out of this car. More information on the Anzani further down

    Classic Driver April May 2010
    THE TIKI ANDTHE PEASHOOTER

    I've been told that there was an article in a previous issue on the W4 fibreglass sports car I'm wondering if you have any copies of the particular magazine available?

    I’m interested because my late Uncle Ted George and the late Bill Ashton moulded the Tiki bodies at George and Ashton Ltd in Dunedin and I’m keen to learn a bit more about the background.

    I took over my Uncle’s fibreglass business and l used to have a Manila folder of photos of the Tiki. There were also photos of a fibreglass bodied single-seater that looked a bit like a D Type Jag‘ It was powered by a V-Twin lO00cc Anzani motorcycle engine and I‘ve been told this was used in Hill Climbs and also around the Wharf racing circuit. I have been told that this thing used to clean up (when it stayed in tune — it had magneto ignition that was a bit temperamental) the likes of Sybil Lupp in her Jaguar and also John Horton who raced some exotic piece of machinery - and apparently being cleaned up by a homemade special did not go down well there. The lightweight body would have contributed to a very favourable power to weight ratio.

    It was raced at Tahuna Park and also held the record at the Bethunes Gully Hillclimb. Ron Ashton raced the Peashooter He IS 84 now and is living in Auckland. It was a single cylinder 500cc Harley Davidson engine with a 4 valve cylinder head and had two stubby exhaust stubby pipes pointing down at the ground and when given a rev. it would spray gravel around (stationery). It ran on methanol.

    Getting back to the Tiki my Uncle had an uncompleted one sitting on a Ford Ten Chassis (it was stored in the old bus shed at Macandrew Bay) and around 21 -22 years ago he donated it to Kings High School — as a project to be completed. I understand that Kings later sold the car. No idea who to though.

    Apparently this car was originally owned by a chap called Albie Johnston who was the proprietor of the Favourite Service Station.

    Bill and Ted read about the new lightweight fibreglass material in Popular Mechanics Magazine (this is back in the early 1950s) and they set about importing the polyester resin from the UK, I understand. Bill was a plasterer and created the shape of the body (probably fibrous plaster) in his garage. Bill had come across fibreglass while serving in the islands during the Second World War – American PT boats were made of fibreglass - but at the time he did not know what it was.
    This foray into fibreglassing eventually led Bill and Ted into setting George and Ashton limited, the first commercial fibreglassing business in New Zealand. Because they got in on the ground floor they grew quite large rapidly moulding a large variety of fibreglass products from tubs and vats, tanks, swimming pools, bathroom ware, canoes, DCC rubbish bins and a varied assortment of other things.

    They got quite big in the 1970s and sold out to Alex Harvey industries (AHI George and Ashton) and manufactured thousands of insulated shipping containers for the NZ Shipping Corporation.

    Brent George, DUNEDIN
    Last edited by Patrick.Harlow; 08-26-2013 at 09:49 PM.

  10. #170
    Pictures of a Tiki I found in Christchurch.


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  11. #171
    Letter from John Ashton which has come into my possession. Unfortunately I do not know the date it was written or who John Ashton is.

    Dear Jerome

    It’s a cold wet day so I will make the effort to write this. The info you sent me is very interesting and helped fill in a few gaps. I have enclosed photos I what I think was the original Tiki. I think three were built for Bill Ashton, on for Ted George and one for Ian McDonald. I spoke to Ian McDonald once and he told me his car was rear engine and powered with a 700cc Royal Enfield engine. You lifted the boot lid, put your foot in and kickstarted it. (Hopefully it was in neutral!) The later ones (such as yours) were quite different – similar to the mistral and normally used Ford 10. You have sparked my interest and I have been doing a bit of chasing around. A friend of mine worked with Bill Ashton on his various cars and has a good knowledge of the Mainly the Anzari and the early Tiki and there is more info to come from him.

    I went on another tack today and have made contact with Chris George son of Ted George of George and Ashton who has a Tiki and has done some research on them but is going to get back to me so will keep you updated. Incidentally the early one (Ian McDonalds) I think was in Nelson but unfortunately Ian died about two years ago.

    ANZANI:- Was a Cooper 500 type car but very different. It had a single central tub chassis about 4” – 5” dia (I think some 3 wheel Morgans were similar) with front and back suspension (mainly Austin 7) welded on a Cooper type body. It was originally powered by an Anzani Twin MC motor? But never ran very well. Anzani also made small plane motors and it is thought this motor may have been an aircraft one. (They were used on a few Morgans also) The motor is now in Christchurch with Dave Ashton (younger brother of Bill). The Anzani wound up with two Jap motors with a chain drive between the two. They would run in up to 1000cc, take the link chain off and run as 500cc.

    I believe the Anzai Special finished its days being turned into a beach buggy at Brighton.

    PEASHOOTER:- Was basically a TQ midget (front engine) with a Harley Davidson “Peashooter” motor and quite popular in their day. This car was orignallu driven by Dave Ashton and sometimes Ron? The two older boys (Bill and Ron) were basically motorcyclists and well known on Speedway.

    Sorry but this is the bit of a mess but I’m still sorting out my own thoughts. It will be interesting to catch up on Chris George and find out more about them. I think there could have been 10 or more built and being sold as bodies or kits many may not have been completed.

    Keep in touch
    Regards
    John Ashton

  12. #172
    Pictures of the car I believe is called the Anzani.
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  13. #173
    Patrick, the car you show as the Anzani is certainly very like the shell KiwiG has, quite how it fits with the coupe shown in Lyttelton I don't know. You have clearly shown a version of the Tiki with doors as I was sure they had. Good to know I haven't lost all my marbles!
    FWIW the PT boats were not made from Glass fibre, but 2 layers of timber with cloth and glue between. The "Mosquitocraft" boats made here after the war and into the 60s were also made this way, and it's very similar to the fabled Mosquito aircraft.
    Last edited by Oldfart; 08-27-2013 at 04:46 AM.

  14. #174
    Patrick the car you show is certainly the same as mine (anzari) mine has the rear bonnet. its not the one shown tho as mine has never had headlights cut out in the front or a windshield . I will add some more pics .. the red coupe on the roof is the same shape as my car .
    Their must have been more than one made .
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  15. #175
    Semi-Pro Racer Paul Wilkinson's Avatar
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    This is great, I knew Patrick would give us some clarification! So the first picture of the 'Tiki' in the Vercoe book is wrong and the second is correct? Was the Anzani made into a coupe? it certainly looks very similar to the car in Lyttelton. I love the way threads like this evolve...

  16. #176
    In this instance I would say Vercoe is not wrong, just that there is more than one version. If you look carefully at the BW photo of the car on a display, and the second Vercoe photo they both have "suicide " doors, and the pale blue one has conventional front hinges. I would be inclined to think that all were from the same stable, perhaps the Anzani was discarded as a not so good idea fairly early. If they were using the Anzani engines I know, they made a very wise decision. The practicality for sale of such an animal is not that great either. Cooper sized cars are great to drive, practical, "Yeah right"!
    You will note that in the letter to Jerome, the Anzani, Anzai, Anzari, is used in the letter, so difficult to know the correct name.
    Last edited by Oldfart; 08-27-2013 at 11:37 PM.

  17. #177
    With this car it is very hard to know who is right and who is wrong. Such is the intrigue and mystery. Anzani is the correct spelling for the motor. When I originally typed up the letter I copied the hard to read and faded handwriting in letter for letter. After which a bit of research confirmed that Anzani were engine manufacturers.

    Along with KiwiG I would put my money on the car on the roof being the car I am now calling the Anzani coupe but for all I know all the cars were called Tikis. My first guess for this car was that it was a British car, the Roachdale C Type, but research points away from that. Perhaps as KiwiG suggests there were three of these cars made.

    Below I have reproduced an article Classic Driver (2007) which shows a third Tiki with what I am calling the Ashley 750 body. A curious point is that the letter states that Bill Ashton had no idea where the Tiki name came from as they never put a name on the bodies. The black and white photo car above and the 1962 add shown below suggests otherwise. The plot continues to thicken.



    (Classic Driver 2007) MORE ON THE TIKI V8
    Amongst the papers I have on the car is a letter from Bill Ashton, dated 12 July 1991, outlining the history on the Mistral and Tiki.

    He recollects about 12 Tiki bodies being made, but very few ever got on the road. He made one for himself at his Sunbury St, Dunedin home and the wide body version made in their factory (George and Ashton Ltd) for a client who lived in Pine Hill.

    Bill's car was completely finished to the extent he drove it to Christchurch on several business trips. Bill's car reg' number was 763.671. It was complete with hard top. Apparently his son Arron took this car South when he was transferred for work in Invercargill.

    I also have a letter dated 14th December 1999 from Chris George (Ted George's son) to John Hooggonboeem, a previous owner to me, stating that he was also living in Invercargill and read about the V8 one in the local paper which inspired him to buy a "very rough body and heaps of bits which will one day no doubt be my pride and joy". He was going to use Triumph Herald running gear in it. This car never got on the road and I think this could be the car on page 33 of the last issue of Classic Driver.

    It certainly isn't the "works" car, or Bill's, as this one clearly has never been finished. According to Dave Robertson, another previous owner, at one stage the Tiki V8 and the Crowe MG VS both sat together in a shed in Invercargill for many years, the MG was motorless.

    One day someone wanted to use the MG for something and took the flathead out of the Tiki and put it into the MG.
    It was atter that Dave Robertson put a 260 Windsor in it — not a 221 as claimed in some documents.
    Coincidentally my brother Jim owned the MG VS in Dunedin for a while.

    I'm compiling a list of previous owners of the Tiki and it appears its had about eight, including myself.
    As Eileen McMillan states in her hook, the car has never been finished — but it is going to be with this owner!
    The Tiki only needed seat belts and door hinges for a WoF when I bought it, but you know how it goes — it's been down to bare chassis and body shell, done the inside of chassis section, rust kill, POR 15 etc.
    Now I have put all the Ford running gear hack in including 2.77:1 Falcon diff, 4-speed, fully recoil' motor (same 260 as came out) new suspension all round, cockpit gutted and rebuilt. A total rebuild end to end.
    I'm working full time on the car and trying to get it done for McLean's Island swap meet in October and drive it there legally. So I'm going to finish this damned E-Mail and get back out there!

    Just another couple of points — Bill had no idea where the "TIKI" came from as they had never put a name on the bodies when they built them. Bill Ashton retired to Alexandra and the car now resides only a few blocks from Bill's house!


    From
    Alan Tall
    Last edited by Patrick.Harlow; 08-28-2013 at 09:38 PM.

  18. #178

  19. #179
    Another car very similar to the Tiki is the Puma produced by Frank Cantwell in Christchurch. The puma shown below used to belong to Brian Avery of Ashurst and now resides in America.

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  20. #180
    That is a very "beggared about with" car. Nice basic shape with no real period features left!

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