We’ve sold 100!
Our 100th car is “Helen,” a red 1958 1275 powered Bugeye Sprite, now bound for Ontario, Canada. Congratulations Mike on your new Bugeye, and thank you and the 99 other recent owners who have made this possible!
100 times we have loaded up a great Bugeye and sent it to a new home. 100 times we have improved and modified these cars to make them more useable than ever in the modern world. 100 times we have heard great stories from buyers with rich memories of the heritage of these cars, and then sent them a car they can use and enjoy.
It has been an honor to keep this small piece of history alive.
What have we learned after 100 Bugeyes have passed through our building?
First, these old cars work really well when set up properly. Unless you have driven many of them, it’s hard to know what’s possible, but the difference between a Bugeye the first day it arrives in our shop and the day it is ready to depart for a new home is usually quite dramatic. When set up properly, a Bugeye is a dream to drive. The average Bugeye one finds online for sale needs a long list of improvements to once again become a stable and tight handling car. We are constantly at work perfecting that package of restorations and improvements, to make the cars safer and more fun to drive than ever.
Second, many of the new parts fit, and many don’t. So we are constantly at work trying to perfect our inventory of parts so that we can build the ultimate car for the next 100 customers. For example, every supplier sells plastic floats for their fuel gauge senders, and we have fixed many non- working fuel gauges that have resulted from sunk floats. The ethanol in modern gas attacks plastic more than anything, and this is a real problem with gas tank sender floats. We have very limited ethanol issues elsewhere in Bugeyes… except with floats! Every time we remove a gas tank we attach an upgraded brass float that is immune to ethanol issues. Many times we find a float full of fuel (that of course reads empty on the gauge). C’mon suppliers, please stop selling plastic! There are many issues like this, and we get better knowing how to deal with this sort of thing with every Bugeye we handle.
Third, there are many great modifications available, and knowing how to integrate them all is a passion of ours. One of my favorites is LED front park lights. They are white hot and not very vintage looking when lit, but they draw very little juice and work wonderfully as daytime running lights, to improve our ability to be seen by distracted drivers. This is a simple upgrade but everything has to be clean and set up properly otherwise the lights work but the blinkers will not! So as with all modifications, buying them is one thing and making them work is another. With each install, we get better and better at integrating all the systems, so that old and new can come together for the best possible final product.
Fourth, there are enough out there. Many are played-out, but at least they are out there. As you probably know, about 50k cars were made. I am often asked how many are left. I can only guess, but I believe there are 5000-10,000 Bugeyes left. A lot of those are in pieces. That’s the most common call I get, about a bugeye sitting in a basement disassembled. So the good cars are special. And we are thrilled that we sent 100 great ones out on a new journey.
For our next 100, we strive to be even better. We still learn a lot from every car. And so each car is a great contribution to our goal of constant improvement. We hope to add more staff, with experience making these cars great, and managing the complexities of working with old and hand crafted products. We hope to offer new products, for all people who love Bugeyes. And we hope to offer more varieties of cool British cars. Just bought my first E-type, and it will be for sale shortly.
Thanks to all who have had a hand in this… to our suppliers, our teammates, our customers, my friends and supporters and to you, faithful reader of this blog. Thanks for your support and your viewership. Our traffic continues to grow, and for a little business that started with a passion for a wonderful little car, we are happier than ever!