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Discussion in 'Vintage (thru 365 GTC4)' started by El Wayne, Nov 1, 2003.
Impure chutzpah on part of that operation as well as conceptcarz . . .
Mr.Napolis,I think I'm stupid bat was enable to realize a "top" view of the P3/4numbers lamp even you post the best world shot of them!
There are 2 screws...and rougly a triangular surface...any pics closer to see the top?
As you tell me, seems in every race the lamps was different...any info about 512S winner of Sebring'70?
Regards and many thanks again!
ps I'm making a 1/12 model of this 512s having trouble without the rigth pics...in the next days I'll start an 1:10 P3/4 model, may I noise you for this kind of things, barely visible in the usual pics?
(obviously I have your big&nice P3/4 pdf!)
They seem to have gotten my message and taken down the images of me and my car.
Not too sure LS will be thrilled with their using his...
It still your car when I just had a look.
Why don't they just show one of their own cars? ... must be cr@p
From what the text seems to indicate- they haven't BUILT any of them yet...
Clicking around in there, I think there are a number of owners who will be cheesed to see their cars featured (Peter K, for example...)
What HAVE they built? Anything?
Hi Mr.Napolis, I found this company that may be useful to have the right number light,
I've just read all seven hundred thousand pages of this and very entertaining it is too. I read them all to see if anyone jumped to a similar conclusion as I did straight away and I don't think anyone has done so far or if they have then they haven't posted it.
Has anyone considered Piper may well be fully aware that the chassis is the remains of 0846 and has been all along but for some reason cannot admit to it?
Is it possible the following happened:
Prior to having new chassis (plural) constructed, sometime in the early 70s, Piper somehow got his hands on 0846's chassis as probably the least interesting P3 and P4 "bit" of a fairly hefty load acquired through less than clear-cut means: engines, spares, bodywork etc etc. We know he got hold of a large amount of spares around this time (not just for P3 and P4 but P2 as well), why not a chassis too?
Maybe he got them through Paul Hawkings/Lola (as stated in the 0846 file by Jim) and Paul Hawkings came by them through slightly underhanded/foggy means?
Maybe old man Ferrari told Piper to take what he wanted and he extended that to "scrap" materials too?
Maybe someone at Ferrari pointed out where he might "find" the chassis? (If you consider this option then some of the wording in Ferrari's correspondence with Jim certainly makes sense)
Maybe Tom Meade discarded it and Piper took it without asking?
Who knows (apart from Piper)? At the time no one cared. If he hadn't have got hold of it it'd all be dust by now. He acquired the parts to help him go racing and he races to win.
Armed with these potentially competitive parts, he then had engineers build a new P4 chassis to house them from plans given to him by Enzo Ferrari to build one new car. While he's at it he has a spare chassis built too but he always considers it a spare (hence "0900" and "0900a" as they were called).
This left him with 3 chassis in total, 2 new ones that fit P4 specs and the older one that was modified from P3 spec.
At this point, with no view to future value, the old chassis 0846 is obviously 3rd best due to modifications, age and damage. So he opts to concentrate on the first of the 2 new chassis in order to build up a complete car to race.
So he mixed and matched the remaining P3 and P4 spares (depending on what would fit the new P4 chassis best) to get himself the best car he could for racing: this car became known as 0900.
The other new chassis stayed as just a chassis in case it was ever needed if 0900 was damaged (it stays this way now I understand).
He was then left with a damaged P3/4 chassis (0846) and a bunch of P3 and P4 spares (some of which would fit this slightly different chassis better than they would fit the P4 chassis) which he built into a 3rd car sometime in the late 1970s that he would refer to as "my P3".
I would therefore guess that these parts, either as a complete car or seperately, were imported into the UK from Italy (where he had the workshop with Meade according to comments in the 0846 File) via Switzerland which is when Marcel Massini saw the chassis. Perhaps Piper even tried to sell the car as 0846 in that time but realised for whatever reason that he couldn't do so without soe legal complications regarding where he acquired the parts and so (sometime after it was seen in Switzerland by Massini as 0846) it ceased to be labelled as such and the story of it's origins changed so it became known and described as a 3rd continuation chassis built a few years earlier alongside the other 2.
Cut to 2000 and he decides to raise some funds. 0900 is very much his #1 car and contains the best of the spares he has acquired over the years. Historical interest aside, it's the best P-car he owns and probably the most sorted of all of them in existence. 0900a is still just a spare chassis. His other F Cars are still competitive as is his 917 Porsche so the P3/0300/whatever-you-want-to-call-it is the obvious choice to sell.
He meets Jim at Goodwood and Jim makes it clear he just wants something close to a P4 to use on the road. Piper knows he can't sell the car as 0846 without someone somewhere (possible even Ferrari themselves) asking him some awkward questions about how he came to own it in the first place so he sells it as being the 3rd continuation chassis that he had built. No one knows how many he had made and when (we're just taking his word for it) so he just tacks it onto the details of the order he made for the 2 P4 chassis (0900 and 0900a) and sells the car as a fantastic reproduction presuming Jim will just use it as it is. He charges for the car accordingly figuring it's better to sell for a fair price as a reproduction than risk putting it up for sale as 0846 and someone else laying claim to ownership, or it souring his relationship with someone.
It's also possible of course that he just didn't care or pay much mind to what 0846's worth would be so to avoid complications just sold it as a repro.
He also sells 0900a to Max Wakefield (according to this thread) and allows a further reproduction chassis to be made to his blueprints as well. Maybe he needed some money?
When Jim sets about fixing the car it's discovered that- according to what Jim has shown us from the photos - the car doesn't match P4 specs as expected. That's the only fact that really matters.
Everything else (the Ferrari website, the language of "written off" vs "destroyed", the DVL, people's comments etc) that came later is irrelevant. I doubt anyone at Ferrari is going to get pissy about Jim putting 0846 in a virtual garage - he is one of the company's biggest profile clients (P4/5 and the possible competition version).
Ditto for the constant assessing of minor linguistic details, it just clouds the argument. If I bought some suspension mounts for a Ferrari 308 from the factory, the invoice of sale would say just that: "Ferrari 308 Suspension Mounts".It's what they are, it doesn't mean my Peugeot 306 Estate is a Ferrari 308. It just means they made me some parts for one. And so on...
(As an aside: the occasional threats of legal action in this thread do nothing to help anyone's argument.
You can't open something like this up to the floor as it were without people arguing against what's being put forward.
Using legal ramifications as a threat and as a qualification for comments made by people (and made out of a legally binding context such as the comments made by Wayne Starling) smacks of the worst type of Americanised sue-me culture I can imagine and it regularly de-rails threads on F-chat by essentially resulting in those with the most money being able to "win" any discussion simply by threatening legal action)
Anyway, getting back to the matter - it turns out it could be 0846, judging from just the chassis irregularities alone. Forget everything else.
So Jim asks Piper. Piper can't admit it's 0846 for reasons mentioned so says "0846 ended up as P5" knowing that's been the accepted line for some time and it would be hard to disprove. This however gets disproved so Piper continues to state he had Jim's chassis built with 0900 and 0900a, as he said in the 70s.
End result: Piper is able to sell some parts from a car that he maybe shouldn't have ended up with (but would have been dust if he hadn't). Jim ends up with what's left of 0846 and the least competitive but most compatible parts from Piper's P3 and P4 parts pile. Is it 0846? If this really is what happened then yes it is. Plenty of historic cars have been made from far less and don't have their authenticity questioned (see aforementioned 250TR built up from some muddy bits of metal). And plenty of historic cars have received boiled-sweet restorations that ruin them and Jim has restored this car incredibly sensitively and with unbelievable research and care.
It's also probably worth considering what parts Piper still has either as spares or in 0900 as they're probably just as historically important as the ones on Jim's car, such is the way Piper treats cars (as racing cars, as that's what they are). Strangely, 0900 (the acknowledged reconstruction) might actually contain more genuine and important P4 parts than the other "factory" cars still around such is the way these cars have been put together over the years.
Its also worth saying the following about Piper: the insinuations that he is some kind of bumbling old fool or worse still a criminal or an alcoholic are crazy. He's been referred to as some sort of stereotype English buffoon far too many times and occasionally it smacks of xenophobia. This is a guy who has driven cars we can only dream about at speeds that most of us would fill our pants to travel at - even as a passenger. He is a dictionary-definition jack-the-lad no-fear racer with a very, very healthy attitude towards old cars that some people see as investments alone. He seems like something of a wind-up merchant as well which in the world of concours events and guys peering into engine bays with clipboards can only be applauded.
Impressed though I am that Jim owns a watch that was in the film Le Mans, let us not forget David lost his leg filming the damn thing and walked away from this:
I love that Jim posts on here and I have wasted vast chunks of time reading through his threads on his P Cars but him and Piper are different types of people. You can't compare them and complain that Piper won't come on here to give his side of the story. He's too busy taking cars apart and then racing the living **** out of them. Lets not forget that Enzo only built the road cars to fund the racing cars and David Piper is a racer, probably why old man ferrari had any regard for him at all. And also let's not forget that whereas Jim's restoration of the car has been amazing, it was Piper who rescued the parts and built the cars in the first place (whatever they are).
See: in my version, everyone's a winner...
Lastly, a question: I stumbled across this pic captioned "David Pipers 330 P4 1967 Prototype championship car" (copyright Neil Bruce) in a very tatty UK book called "Great Marques: Ferrari" by Godfrey Eaton. What car is this? 0900 in red? I had the chance to look at 0900 very closely a few weeks back (photos coming when I get round to it) and there are a lot of differences - of course the red photo was taken about 25 yrs ago.
Piper would have sold 0846 for much, much more, if at all.
"Plenty of historic cars have been made from far less and don't have their authenticity questioned"
That sums it up for me right there. With these old racers it's impossible to know what's what sometimes. Unfortunately there is nigh a old Ferrari racer out there that wasn't destroyed, cut, maimed or the like out there. Mods done in their day or not.
David told me the Red car in your photo is the one I now own, whether it is...
I do tend to agree that the Bottom Line remains:
Nathan's Photo Proves that I didn't "counterfeit" the Unique "Bastard" P3/P4 chassis that's part of the car I now own.
Marcel's statements show that this chassis had the chassis plate 0846 in the 70ies and he saw it with those stampings.
Tom, as recently as a few days ago, confirmed that in the 60ies he had an original scrapped P3/P4 chassis in the shop he shared with David in Modena.
Wayne, as confirmed by Gerald, clearly stated that he repaired the chassis that's now owned by me after the Targa Florio accident and he identified that repair in front of several witnesses years later when my car was at the FCA Concours in Quail.
Occam's Razor remains sharp.
The more I look at it, the more my explanation makes sense. I find it hard to believe Piper was ripped off by chassis builders and didn't know what he had. It's also odd that a lot of folks are very willing to take his word on one thing (the number of chassis he had built, when and why) but not anything else. I would say he ended up with a pile of bits he maybe shouldn't have - nothing illegal, just a bit "dodgy" as we Brits would say - and built up the cars accordingly with those parts.
Up until the initial rebuild of Jim's car everyone thought 0846 was either in the ground somewhere or in the P5 - fair assumption that Piper might have hedged his bets when he sold the chassis that no one would work out where it came from. Jim still paid a serious amount of money for the car (even if it was a fraction of the worth of a "real" one).
It'd be interesting to know if anyone was offered 0846 for sale in the 1970s (Jim - did you not say you had heard of one for sale around that time?) or whether Ferrari themselves had any correspondence with Piper around that time about the car (whatever they considered it to be). With Piper still racing Ferraris it may have been counter-productive to his efforts back then to try and sell a car he'd snuck out of the back door of the factory.
Like I said, not if he had doubts about whether it was his to sell. Or if he acquired the chassis from the factory or elsewhere by means that were a bit cloak and dagger. That stuff went on for sure and Piper has owned lots of bits and pieces from some very significant Ferraris, not just P4s.
I'm not accusing anyone of anything illegal I should add. Back when any of this happened these were just bits of bent metal from out-of-date racing cars let's not forget. But it might explain why Piper sticks to the story of where the chassis in Jim's car came from.
Surely better to get a not-inconsiderable amount of money for a "replica" than risk getting nothing at all?
Interesting that it's captioned as a 330P4 Prototype. Not that I read too much into that but I would imagine the caption came from Piper's own description.
David did call it "My P3" and fit it with a P3 motor at one time and with a P4 motor at another. He also did put an "0846" lable in Dymo Tape on it's cockpit bulkhead.
Your question about offering this chassis for sale is an interesting one. I do believe that he imported it to Sabarro's shop where Marcel saw it with that's intention. I did chase a few ghosts but couldn't confirm that.
There is another issue here that IMO is very important. The amount of disclosure on 0846 has been vast and I also think that there are many cars on many lawns and race tracks that have not had the same level of disclosure.
I am by no means an expert, but I believe that to be the deciding factor for someone like me. What are the experts in the field disclosing. Much of the time, someone who is "in the biz" and is well respected says nothing about controversial items for obvious reasons.
I'm not much of a car expert but to use an analogy related to matters in which I have a little more knowledge (bear with me) imagine the following scenario:
It's the late 60s, you're in a band, you're put on a package tour with the Jimi Hendrix Experience. The JHE only have one tech guy with them for the tour and he's a friend of yours from way back.
You have some problems with your equipment on the tour and Hendrix's tech helps you out. They get a lot of stuff for free from amp and guitar companies and throwing you the odd component or spare part is just mates being mates and their tech tells you, his old friend, "Hey, what's ours is yours".
On the tour Hendrix is spectacular. On the last night he trashes all the equipment. It's pandemonium. Local crew are stealing drumsticks, kids are stealing setlists, Hendrix doesn't care. It's amazing. Loads of photographers capture the moment. As the smoke clears and you go to clear your gear into the van, you see onstage the remains of Hendrix's guitar for the night. "Whats ours is yours" they said, it's not worth anything except as a nice memento of a fantastic tour so you take it.
When you get home you take some of the spare parts you have been given and you fit new pickups and hardware to the remains of the guitar and you like it and use it from time to time. You refer to it occasionally as your "Hendrix guitar".
1970 - Hendrix dies. Suddenly your little memento is worth a bit of money so you put word around it's for sale. You don't use the guitar so much and you could do with the extra cash. However, your roadie friend catches wind of this and makes it very clear he's not happy with the situation. You call him up and say he's got it wrong, the guitar wasn't taken from anywhere, its just made out of bits that you were given and some other bits you had made. You tell him you call it your "Hendrix guitar" because you built it from parts to look like Jimi's. He's still a friend, he's still useful in the business to you and you don't want to fall out with him.
You accept selling it might be hard as it might not be yours to sell so you ditch the idea. Technically, it's hard to work out exactly who it belongs to at all. So you just carry on using it anyway.
Cut to present day and you need to raise funds again. The Hendrix guitar is the least played of your collection. If you could say it belonged to Hendrix then it'd be priceless but you can't. However, as time has passed, Fender Strats from that era have become valuable in their own right, especially as yours has connections to Jimi Hendrix even if you can't say he owned it and played it. So you sell it for a pretty penny to a collector as a "bitsa" of interesting bits in their own right and make (overall) a good return on something you just came by in the first place knowing for pretty much certain that no one will twig it's the guitar Hendrix played in all the famous photos because everyone thinks it ended up in a bin somewhere in the late 60s.
Even if the new owner twigged it was ex-Hendrix and declared it, I don't think the roadie or Hendrix's estate would lay claim to the guitar but it would seriously sour relationships between the people concerned for definite. So much so that I would want to plead ignorance to knowing it's history too.
Interesting story. You might be interested in reading post #45 in the current "FYI" thread.It would help if you can identify what parts came from which, presumably destroyed, Hendrix guitar. which came from a similar guitar and which you made. What you have is not an original but certainly has an interesting provenance. just one man's opinion tongascrew
Sumlin has posted an interesting theory. I have always thought that David probably really knew what he had and what this chassis was and where it came from. Think about it, there aren't that many frames lying around, and if he had more than two built from scratch he'd have jolly well know it. As noted this probably was, in his mind,the least desireable of the chassis that he had, and really, who would expect that anybody would go through as extensive documentation of the car and realize where and what it was. Anyone else would have simply used the car and enjoyed it, and not done the extensive research on it that Jim has obviously done. David has been mum on the subject, so we may never know, but I doubt that he didn't know where that chassis came from.
Without that extensive research and documentation, it would have simply been one of the "Piper cars" and not thought of anything more. What it is now is as close as possible to what 0846 would be today if it hadn't been parted out and put back together. And we can all be thankful for that and enjoy it for what it is.
+ 1 totally agree. It is as close as it gets and is the only chassis that can come close to laying claim to be 0846. Many racers were built and claimed with no arguement to their provenance with far less.
David has commented and his comments as posted by Nathan and the photo he gave Nathan to Post clearly prove that this chassis was not counterfeited by me and that it was definitely not made to P4 Blueprints as David had claimed it was.
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I am a big Guitar guy. Love Hendrix, SRV, Rhoads.
I just wanted to add that not only do i "get" your analogy, but that your post was wonderful insightful, and well written.
That's the "issue". You've been forthright, while many with other cars haven't done so. Lots of "original" bitsa's out there.
Your car appears to be more original than most prewar Bugatti T35's/T51's. I understand that many D-Types (Jaguars, that is) have different from subframe/monocoque/engine numbers than when they were originally constructed, simply because the factory mixed and matched whatever was available.
With regard to D Types,its later owners that have "mixed and matched " front subframes to create new cars.
i agree with this theory, makes sense.