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De Vaux totals

Just mulling over so many inconsistencies on De Vaux info which is no different to the rest of the Durant Empire.

Norman De Vaux, president and general manager of the Durant Motor Co, of California, late in 1930 announced his purchase of the West Coast Durant affiliate from Wm. C. Durant and his son, Cliff. Further, de Vaux reported he had joined forces with engine designer Col. Elbert J. Hall to design and build a new low priced car to be known as the De Vaux Six. As a result of these moves, the former Durant California company changed its name to De Vaux – Hall Motors Corp, and began preparations to manufacture the new De Vaux in its Oakland, California plant and a new factory in Grand Rapids, Mich. January 3 1931, the De Vaux car is introduced.

The first De Vaux 6-75 production model, car No 1009, rolled off the lines at Grand Rapids, on April 1 1931. Car assembly at Oakland began April 15, and late May the Calif factory was producing 50 cars a daily, while the Michigan plant was up to 125 units a day. An improved De Vaux 6-75 was launched in late summer of 1931. In Jan 1932 De Vaux announced its 32 line with substantial modifications. Styled the De Vaux 80 etc etc. Bodies wider by 2 inches, wheelbase increased to 114 inch. One inch higher rad.
Collapse followed and on Feb 10 1932 the DeVaux – Hall Motors went into receivership signing a petition of voluntary bankruptcy. Feb 18 1932 Continental Motors Corp purchases the De Vaux name and Mich assets of the bankrupt Co. De Vaux – Hall Co itself and Oakland plant were not inc and remained in receivership, eventually to be liquidated. In early March the Continental- De Vaux Co was incorporated to resume operations in Grand Rapids plant.

Humm last C and M 675 on Terry’s Registry is C-5548 and M-5530 doesn’t that add up to more than 11000, then toss in last M 680 is M-6935. Total production is claimed to be about 6166 for 31 / 32 of 675 and 680.

DMAC DeVaux serials and Terry serials 675 1001 – 5609 ... 680 5610 – 7038 This agrees to a same total I see for serials from a book of serials for production totals, but it only gives Detroit plant and omits to indicate Oakland. So much for saying only 6166 DeVaux’s produced if last serial is 7038 but is that only Michigan plant and fails to add whatever Oakland produced ?? C-1001 to at least C-5548 (registry) and M-1001 to M-7038 seems to indicate over 12,000 De Vaux's produced.

Oakland serials are bad for 1930 Durant’s as well giving only 614 in serial books but we know they made 407, 610, 612 etc.

Where Are You From? Ottawa Ont

Do You own a car built by Durant? Dominion built 1932 614 Sedan

Re: De Vaux totals

Hey Norm;
Very interesting study. Don't know if anyone has taken the time to study DeVaux production numbers. So the bottom line is that we still don't know how many DeVaux's were actually made do we? It's really ashame that when the Durant, Flint, DeVaux etc closed it's doors that no one saved the corporate records. I guess they were just tossed in the trash or burned. I haven't been able to find any corporate records for any of the companies yet. I did find a bankruptcy report on the assets of the Locomobile company in 1927 when they close their doors showing various vehicle assets with all the dealers. That's in the Kettering Museum records. Shows both new and used cars on the lots of the dealers and corporation. Wouldn't it be nice someday to find those in a barn stashed away somewhere. We could only hope.

Where Are You From? Oviedo, Florida

Do You own a car built by Durant? Yes 1928 Durant Model 65 4 door sedan

Re: De Vaux totals

Hi Mike .. Its just what Steve L and I are getting into tossing things back and forth about the 30's cars. I sit and think about things we have talked about and then you realize it doesn't click. Not the first time over Oakland this has raised its head. Was a Forum item about it and 407's which a member said he had 3 C letter 407's but if you look on the serial listings, zip.

So much mis info written up 60 / 70's we took a true but are now finding are not so. Its the same with books 20 / 30's and glaring errors in those too. You can put 4 or 5 serial books side by side, US / Can, and they don't match. As I have mentioned Branham's bible of mis info is another. Branhams got info well in advance of any car being produced from Co's, so they could publish the book. Co's may have decided not to produce that model, later, or differently. Branhams being US doesn't have our cars and parts. Can see why folks think last cars were summer of 1931 for Durant. Only a few of us know Dominion continued the car.

The problem we have is to find the thread of truth or close to, if we can.

You would wonder with Dominion and its records. Dominion didn't give up until 1944 so you would think there should be records somewhere for the 32 / 33 / 34 last serials. (Also the elusive 633 other than in after market catalogues). Its the reverse with US parts books giving parts on the 621 / 622 but US after markets from Durant Motors stops at 619. Bet its the same as Branhams, which also has the two. Info was gathered before any cars were produced, but they never were and Durant Motors was history US, with the 619 when Lansing stopped.

One sad thing is the Oshawa Museum got the Craven Foundation collection of automobile material, which is packed away in boxes with mice eating it, near the only surviving 685 coup. A lot of our info might be in those boxes if you had any idea where it might be, there is no index to this mass of paper Steve tells me. Can see all that going to be of no use to anyone once time and mice chew it up. No one has touched the disassembled 685 for years.

Don't laugh, you are almost right. The late owner of the RV park I volunteer at, showed me census books from the 1880's, over 10 yrs ago his family has had. Neat when everything is jotted down, family names but also how many chickens, horses, pigs etc that farm had. The books were found in a hen house by his father.




Where Are You From? Ottawa Ont

Do You own a car built by Durant? Dominion built 1932 614 Sedan

Re: De Vaux totals

HELLO MIKE AND NORM
IN THE LATE 70S I PUT AN AD IN CARS AND PARTS MAGAZINE LOOKING FOR DEVAUX CARS AND PARTS,I RECEIVED A CALL FROM A FAMILY IN SACRAMENTO CALIF,THEY SAID THERE FATHER HAD WORKED IN THE CALIF PLANT IN 31 32,THEY TOLD ME THEY HAD 2 DEVAUXS BUILT ONE DAY APART IN CALIF,THEY HAD NOS PARTS AND SEVERAL FILE CABINETS OF PAPER WORK FROM THE PLANT,SORRY TO SAY I NEVER FOLLOWED UP ON IT,A SHORT WHILE LATER THERE WAS A GENTLEMAN I BELIEVE IN LONG BEACH CALIF WHO I BELIEVE WAS A FLINT SPECIALIST, IM GOING OFF MEMORY,HE HAD PURCHASED THE DEVAUXS AND EVERYTHING THAT WAS THERE,HIS NAME ESCAPES ME,ANY WAY I HEARD THIS GENTLEMAN PASSED AWAY SEVERAL YEARS AGO PROBABLY 10 OR MORE NOW,
I HAD A FRIEND OF MINE GO BY AND TALK TO HIS WIFE BUT SHE SAID SHE DIDNT KNOW WHO ENDED UP WITH THE CARS OR INFO,I BELIEVE HE WAS WELL KNOWN IN THE CLUB,WHAT DO THEY SAY ABOUT TO LATE BEING SMART,ANYBODY KNOW WHERE THE CARS WENT WE MAY BE ABLE TO FIND SOME INFO, DAVE ENRICO

Where Are You From? SO CALIF

Do You own a car built by Durant? 1931 DEVAUX

Re: De Vaux totals

I jest when I say barn find for documents, but in the past I have looked over the clubs old magazines and found lots of advertisements for cars that you wonder what ever happened to them. Did they go to the scrap dealer or are the stashed away somewhere under a tarp. There was once an ad in California for a Star hearse with the body all custom made of wood and glass. Boy would that be something to see. Those in the club awhile remember that for years there was a rumor among car enthusiast that somewhere in Auburn, Indiana was a stash of old Graham Parts and Durant parts that had not seen the lite of day since the early 1960's. At our National Meet there several members made it their quest that weekend and sure enough they came up with them and they are now in the possession of Frank W. and Larry F. You just never know, it's like prospecting for gold.

Where Are You From? Oviedo, Florida

Do You own a car built by Durant? Yes 1928 Durant Model 65 4 door sedan

Re: De Vaux totals

Jesting or not you just don’t know where you will find things hidden. I was emailing a lad a few years back at Reynolds Museum, now Prov owned. He was telling me of being in a men's clothing store in Calif and up on a shelf as display item was a very rare rad ornament the museum was looking for to complete a car. Told the owner of the quest to find that item and why. Think he got it for $20 and is on the cars rad. Just a fluke he went into the store. And again I have seen books / mags / newspapers in barns / sheds / abandoned farms and have one or two. Like a Caddy owners book early teens in a loft, my 35 after market catalogue on a floor in its envelope, Mid 20's Dodge owners book, Oshawa 490 parts book and owners book, dandy mags like Sat Evening Post 1900 and up with cool car ads.

Know what you mean Mike. There was a lot of vintage cars when we formed AACO 1965 and had fun with them. Fields and junk yards with them also. New blood changed the club to the point our vintage cars were not wanted and too slow. Finally the Ford A owners said enough of being ignored and we formed CCA 1975. I lost track of the cars and owners in AACO. As far as fields we know what happened there with the Govmt cleaning up the countryside of all cars. Once they got their mitts on a vehicle there was no way anyone could stop its destruction at a metal scrap yard. People would follow these trucks hoping to be able to buy the vehicles, to no avail. Strangely old farm equipment rusting away was not picked up. That came later with high price paid any metal you could drag in. Junk yards with the new rules about length of time a vehicle can sit on the ground in a yard (10 months) and age of vehicle has taken care of that with yards vanishing like melting snow. That’s what happened to Minakers I mention now and then who has buildings full of parts. Randy crushed 2000 cars 2006 to keep the G boys away from his place, one was a 1931 614 Durant sedan still on the wire wheels, rad, engine, lights, etc. I have a pic of it from 2005 I was sent and you can see the rows of square bodied cars.
Like you were saying, I have wondered what happened to all the cars we had in the 60’s in the club or knew about. One lad had a 1927 Diana Moon sedan, big 3 ton car of two used as taxi’s in Ottawa orig. He had a few other cars as well like 1904 Tudhope, 17 Ford, 23 490, 29 Ford, 1934 Lanchester. Were a few lads who had more than one car. Last I heard the Lanchester was in some barn sinking in the ground somewhere near Winchester, going back to nature. My 30 614 is now Claude’s car and my 31 Chevy canopy express truck is in Hawaii being used to sell sunglasses to surfers in some store, engine / tranny, tools and history thrown out, Brian’s 31 614 is Stephan’s car, Bill’s 27 Star is below Montreal and has won awards, Mr Paradis 29 Durant ??, Mr Steele’s 28 Durant ?? (that was some car. Brian, Mr Steele and myself went to the Steele homestead to see the car in the garage where it had been dust covered for years. Except for the layers of dust you would think it was brand new. Mr Steele brought it to his home in Ottawa, washed the dust off and had it out to the club events. For a car that had been sitting for years you would have thought it came out of a packing case.) Graham’s 29 Durant is Cumberland Museum’s. Steve has the 29 Durant that orig came from near Mr Steeles homestead up the Que. side. Keiths 24 Durant is now Andreas. Rest of the Packards, Rolls Royces, Buicks, Nashs, Chevs, Plymouths, Dodges, Caddys, Ford A & T’s, Willys Knight, vehicles I have no idea. Hopefully the vehicles are still around US / Canada and not been allowed to go back to nature / scrapped.

Where Are You From? Ottawa Ont

Do You own a car built by Durant? Dominion built 1932 614 Sedan

Re: De Vaux totals

Perhaps Gary Yelle can shed some light on this subject, as he holds the De Vaux registry records passed to him by a fellow club member. I have also asked Gary for this info so I can compare with my research and records. If any club member has photos of the Hayes body tags and I.D. tags on any De Vauxs can you please froward them to me for Durant registry as verification. Thank you stevelarge@rogers.com

Where Are You From? Mississauga Ontario Canada

Do You own a car built by Durant? No owner of 1933 Frontenac C-400 from Dominion Motors Leaside

Re: De Vaux totals

hello steve ill try to get the pics this weekend of my 2 devauxs a 31 coupe and a 32 coupe dave

Where Are You From? SO CALIF

Do You own a car built by Durant? 1931 DEVAUX

Re: De Vaux totals

Dave do you have the Hayes body tags / numbers drivers side firewall in engine compartment for Steve ??? VINs and anything else we can use.
Thanks.

Where Are You From? Ottawa Ont

Do You own a car built by Durant? Dominion built 1932 614 Sedan

Re: De Vaux totals

Dave that would be great to get the correct info, it's getting tuffer these days to get original details that can verify a vehicle so it can be registered properly for historical researchers. Again Thanks.

Where Are You From? Mississauga Ontario Canada

Do You own a car built by Durant? 1933 Frontenac C-400

Re: De Vaux totals

You can't be sure that a manufacturer stuck with a serial number sequence.
Maybe they bumped it up to the next 1000 at the beginning of each month, or when they made a running change. It wasn't unheard of that they would skip numbers to mislead the competition on how many cars they actually built. It might be useful in negotiating parts prices if the vendors thought they could land a big order. It might help discourage recruiting of executives by other companies if they thought the company was still solid. Etc.

Do You own a car built by Durant? Yes

Re: De Vaux totals


It is to be expected that foreign buyers of scrap would hire lobbyists to create laws to make it rain iron and steel and copper upon them. Women in politics and judgeships still carry a "clean-up compulsion" within them. Note: the "Clunker Law" in the US. In our rural area, the clunkers were better than most people could afford for transportation. The law took their supply of replacement vehicles off the market, so they had to keep driving their "sub-clunkers" a while longer. Only the people who didn't need a subsidy got a good deal on a new car. The politicians congratulated each other.

Do You own a car built by Durant? Yes

Re: De Vaux totals

You might be right Charles about bumping up VIN's but then using the Registry of existing cars gives one an idea they might not have, if you have VIN's every so hundred or so on up. Look at De Vaux registry in Terry's site and numbers are fairly close to one another at Oakland and Detroit, with no big gaps or jumps.

Small example is our 614's and numbers are not all that many made which makes sense with a dying Co. We do know Canada 1930 and 31 614 numbers. T 1001 – T 4269, B 4270 – B 5034, J 5035 – ??? So you can see production numbers dropping 4269 for 30, 765 for 31 and ? for 32 as Durant Motors fades off into the sunset at Dominion Motors. Then add we are using up the Durant Motors parts to make the Dominion Motors cars. Kirby finally stopped Durant production in 32 saying the Durant Motor's was out of business months before, and continued the Frontenac and Reo at Dominion. Just wish somewhere final VIN's for models was recorded somewhere. Not only Dominion but Durant Motors empire of cars / models, Loco, Continental.

Government clean up continues and getting any car off the roads over X years be it current or vintage. Harder and harder to register vehicles. Rods can no longer be plated as year of production but year of the motor and must abide by the rules that engine year. I was at a flea market in Odessa Ont when they announced over the PA about the new laws to be careful if you have a modified car, leaving the grounds and not plated as year of engine with emissions rules for that year, it would be seized by the police and the owner would not be driving it home.

Off the site
What makes a car a “hot rod”?

Many people think a “hot rod” is any car modified to go faster. In Ontario, that’s not true.

By regulation, a hot rod is any car whose original motor has been replaced by a different type.

Type refers to the motor’s:
•manufacturer
•block size (displacement)
•use in the vehicle’s model and model year*.

*Any motor that was available for that model and model year (for example, it may have come as an option) would not be a different type and, therefore, not qualify as a hot rod


I don't recall what Province now, but one of the Prairie Province's will not allow cars over 20 years old be brought into the Prov, be it vintage, antique, or old, in a bid to rid the Prov of cars over 20 years.

We also have emission testing in Ont for newer cars, which is s joke. Doesn't cover all of Ont, just lower part Windsor to Ottawa. Was every two years which was nonsense on a two year old car if you were owner, or time of sale to new owner less than two years. Its now been extended to a longer period and I think Ont Govmt wants to drop it period but the lobbyists wanting it, is what is holding that back. Ah yes reading the pamphlet. Drive Clean is now every two years after 5 yrs and vehicles 1987 and earlier are exempt. Good side is they have collected too much fees for this testing and effective April 1 2014 its $5 less which also means less HST as well.

Where Are You From? Ottawa Ont

Do You own a car built by Durant? Dominion built 1932 614 Sedan

Re: De Vaux totals

Hi All:
Sorry for the delay in getting to this post as I was pre-occupied with a medical problem.

I have always believed the cars produced in 1931 were 4609. The Serial numbers are 1001 to 5609. The 32 DeVaux's were only 1429. The Serial numbers were 5610 to 7038. As to the Serial numbers being higher than the production quantities, I believe they just jumped around and built in blocks of numbers. It even could have been driven by dealer orders. (We used a varation of that pattern to build airplanes unique to customer requirements).

I never knew the first production number for the Grand Rapids plant was 1009 but in thinking back to information that Howard gave to me this could make sense. Howard showed me a picture of a car "given" to the Mayor of Grand Rapids. This was a two door with shortened body and a large trunk box. Also he believed that custom panel trucks were made on special orders. This could account for 1001 thru 1008.

I can't figure out the Hayes body numbering system. For 1931: 150-xxxx, 151-, 152-, and even one 153-xxxx in California. For 1932, Hayes numbers are 168-xxxx and 170-xxxx. I don't have any picture of the Hayes body tag but I hope Dave can supply one.

By the way, Phaeton numbers might be in the Oakland serial numbers. Phaeton's were only exported out of the Oakland plant. Howard gave me a picture of created DeVaux's being shipped to the "Holy Land". These were special ordered by a dealer in Lebanon. Most Phaetons went to Asia. Not sure if any went to Australia but if DeVaux's were sent there it would have been without bodies.

Gary

Where Are You From? Washington State

Do You own a car built by Durant? Yes

Re: De Vaux totals

Hi Gary .. not sure anyone knows correct numbers when Oakland vins are missing in all vin books for De Vaux and some Durant's.

I'm seeing the same numbers you quote for 31 and 32 in a Canadian vin book but indicated under Frontenac ?? 1932 6-70 has Leaside G-1001 end unknown, and 6-75 Detroit 1001- 5609. Next batch is under 6-85 Leaside K-1001 - K-1217 and 6-80 Detroit 5610 - 7038. Next batch is 6-85 only K-1217 end unknown but we know it was K 1300 from research.

I don't believe Oakland numbers are known for De Vaux. Reason being Oakland is mentioned for 29 models like 40, 60, 63, 70. 614 only for 1930 but we know the other models were made there like the 407 which became 612, and 610 was brought out as companion to the 612. Then Dec 17 1930 Oakland stops all production. Lansing only continues US until summer 31. Oakland De Vaux's ???? and you have one.

Gillis and Terry are using the same numbers from VIN info available. Oakland and end numbers at plants are unknown or missing. Lance was saying similar thing about Locomobile VIN's.

Here's a Hayes body tag
 photo 633Coup01.jpg

Where Are You From? Ottawa Ont

Do You own a car built by Durant? Dominion built 1932 614 Sedan

Re: De Vaux totals

Hello guys, great great info you have here! I myself just found a 1931 DeVaux 675 Custom sitting in a back yard here in Huntington Beach, CA. It LOOKS 90% compete. I would love some info on this car, the serial number is i54-3120. I really need some help on this classic and try to find some parts, help with the process, wood kits, etc.

Thanks Brent!

Where Are You From? Huntington Beach, CA

Do You own a car built by Durant? De Vaux Model 75 Sedan

Re: De Vaux totals

Here's a link of a few pictures of the DeVaux....

Where Are You From? Huntington Beach, CA

Do You own a car built by Durant? De Vaux Model 75 Sedan

Re: De Vaux totals

Hi Brent:
It's great to hear of another DeVaux find! This proves they are still out there. I was forwarded your post on the AACA form and got a chance to look at the pictures. I want to thank Frank (our club President) for that.
I have been following the DeVaux marque for a long time now and did take over the DeVaux Registry some years back. I created the web site www.devauxregistry.com (thanks to Rick Botti). Look up to the "Links" and you can find the site. Connecting to the internet has proved to be very helpful in keeping track of cars. At first I thought there were only 20 or so cars out there but now I have 57...ops now 58 cars found.
Please contact me (garyyelle@msn.com),or thru the web page. I am going to try to match up your Hayes body number to the list of cars I have. Also, there is a "Car" number plate on the upper toe board on the passenger side. Your car would probably have a C-XXXX. If the floor boards are gone, you might have lost that way of identifying the car.
Other friends are as knowledgeable as I in the DeVaux research. Howard Reinke of Michigan and Dave Enrico in Southern California. Last year a DeVaux collector, Myron Cummings passed and 2 weeks ago another, Mike Larsen.

Thanks, Gary Yelle

Where Are You From? Washington State

Do You own a car built by Durant? Yes

 

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