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Re: A Couple Road Trip Pictures
minuteman #747598 Sat Apr 25 2020 08:25 AM
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Thanks to all who have added to this post and shared their road trip stories with us. Unfortunately for us younger collectors the days of picking like this were/are pretty much over. Sure, there's the odd story here and there of a good find in an old bulk plant or a few globes or signs found in the crawl space of an abandoned station, but bulk finds like many of these discovered decades ago are nonexistent. Thanks for giving us a little bit of the thrill of the hunt in the glory days!
Darin


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Re: A Couple Road Trip Pictures
minuteman #747601 Sat Apr 25 2020 09:29 AM
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Darrin I was thinking the same thing. Very rare now to stumble onto something in a big way. Most things in large groups are now in someones barn collection or other collection and waiting for the next generation to liquidate. There are still a few good ones left though, gives us all hope. Great stories and pictures though.


Craig
Re: A Couple Road Trip Pictures
minuteman #747602 Sat Apr 25 2020 09:33 AM
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Clifton Don't feel to bad . I've sure missed my fair share of great things to , it might be because I didn't have enough money at the time or maybe it was that I just was after other things . When I look back now in hindsight I regret what I didn't buy way more than what I did but it all has been so much fun . Anyways here is just one of my mistakes. I was up in a little town in Wyoming and had bought some stuff from one guy that referred me to his friend so I called him and told him what I collected he replied that he had some things from a old Mobil station . I asked if I could stop by and he said sure . I get there and he opens his garage door and this is what I see . Now this horse is dead mint but dusty I looked it over top to bottom and all it had was one eraser sized chip on the left front leg. He had a few other things like the lighted round Mobil signs which nobody wanted at the time . So I ask politely how much for the horse , and of course he says make me an offer so I say $1,000.00 I know what your thinking What a low ball offer but 22 years ago that was a fair starting price . So he says its got to be higher and I say $1,500.00 which was all I had and I told him that . He was nice and said your close but not quite there. So I asked him to give me some time and I would get more money and we can work out a deal . He said sure I'm in no hurry. At that time I wanted it but it wasn't killing me to get it and I was mainly after other things so like a dummy I let a lot of time pass that when I did call the poor guy had passed away and his wife said that there son was taking it . And I think that's fine but I will always feel that if I had another $500.00 when I was there it would be in my garage .

IMG_2292.JPG
Last edited by Wasatch Man; Sat Apr 25 2020 09:36 AM.
Re: A Couple Road Trip Pictures
minuteman #747608 Sat Apr 25 2020 11:35 AM
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I can’t say for others but for myself Darrin even back then I never really had a lot of “bulk” finds. It was usually a little bit at each stop. Whether it was a week road trip thru 3 or 4 states and 3500 miles or just a day or 2 jaunt to a swap meet. It might sound like there was stuff behind every corner but that’s not the case. You might knock on 25 doors and get nothing that day or spend 3 hours looking thru junk to find one or two things to buy that you shouldn’t have bought but felt guilty wasting some guys time.
Definitely there was more around back then but I see that also as a generation thing too. The old boys never threw anything away as they usually grew up with nothing.
Now first thing their kids or grandkids do is Clean Up. Need all new building’s equipment etc. So your cans and antiques are buried in the ground. I could go on with EBay and picker shows, etc but will leave it at that.
Don’t get me wrong it was and still is a thrill like no other to find something to put in the garage.
But I am a firm believer in the old adage “The harder you work the Luckier you get”


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Re: A Couple Road Trip Pictures
minuteman #747609 Sat Apr 25 2020 11:59 AM
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Very well said Kim ,you would know as much as anyone out there about it . New collectors might get the impression that we went out every weekend and found the mother load . The big hauls were far and few between for me , usually I would drive miles and miles and maybe get a couple of things . It was always fun and you tried to have a lead or two before you went but I always felt like I had to work hard to get anything.

Re: A Couple Road Trip Pictures
minuteman #747610 Sat Apr 25 2020 12:24 PM
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To finish up the last story about a year or so after I had found that round Husky sign and some same era Husky road maps in that building I did a bit of research and found out there was a couple long gone refineries in that area of town back in the 30’s era. Obviously one was Husky, so I decided to look for any other buildings that had that same look to them.
Sure enough 2 blocks west was another large building surrounded by trees and a big lot with a house.
I knocked on the door and this fellow answers, I asked if he might have any old signs or gas pumps in that old metal building in his lot. He seemed very stand offish and replied no, I could tell he wasn’t going to let me look, lol, so just before leaving I asked specifically one more time about signs in the rafters possibly and got the same answer no.
So I said alright have a great day and left.
It happened at this same i time was running an ad in the local newspaper about buying signs, pumps,etc.
It was about 5 days later I get this call on my ad from a fellow saying he has a Husky sign to sell. I asked size what it looks like etc. He just said it’s big and says Husky.
I said ok, get his number and said next time I’m in town I will look at it. I think it was 2-3 weeks before I got back there. I called him and he gave me his address, drive up there and be damned if it wasn’t the same place I had asked about signs before.
Knock on door (he doesn’t recognize me from before) and sure enough we go over to that big metal building.
Head inside and there way up in the rafters (no attic here) I can see a vague image of a Husky dog jumping.
I figured it was going to be some hunk of junk after the initial phone call which is why I never rushed there.
Anyway I made a deal to buy it, as is, before crawling on 2x6 rafters and trying to wrestle this 4x8 foot sign down between rafters.
Got it down and in the truck finally, to the car wash and sprayed it off. It was a thing of beauty and confirmed the existence of a Husky refinery at one time long ago.


Wanted early tin litho signage.
petro, farm, auto, etc.
Re: A Couple Road Trip Pictures
minuteman #747611 Sat Apr 25 2020 12:26 PM
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Sign picture
Husky has always been and still is one of my favourite Companies to collect.

9F349FE5-A429-400D-B143-EB1BD4DB006D.jpeg

Wanted early tin litho signage.
petro, farm, auto, etc.
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Re: A Couple Road Trip Pictures
minuteman #747615 Sat Apr 25 2020 01:54 PM
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Beautiful sign .

Re: A Couple Road Trip Pictures
minuteman #747618 Sat Apr 25 2020 02:24 PM
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That is an awesome Husky sign! I don't believe I have seen that one before.

Re: A Couple Road Trip Pictures
minuteman #747620 Sat Apr 25 2020 02:43 PM
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Really enjoying this thread. Kim that Husky is one of the nicest signs I've seen. Thanks for sharing.

Re: A Couple Road Trip Pictures
minuteman #747631 Sat Apr 25 2020 04:49 PM
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Yes, I agree I wasn't looking at the bigger picture of all the miles traveled with none or few finds to haul home, and that not all hauls were a truck load. I guess in my mind I had visions of bulk plants and oil company storage buildings just filled with items for the asking. I guess that would have been even earlier than most anyone was collecting petroliana. I've had many conversations with the grandson of a local oil company dynasty, they started out as Hi-Speed in 1933 and are still in business today. At any rate, when Union took over Pure Oil Co. he remembers taking all of the Pure globes to the railroad tracks behind the storage building and smashing them for fun, since there was no longer any need for them. So I know some of the "old junk" was cleaned out 50+ years ago from some of these places. Beautiful Husky sign by the way!
Darin


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Always looking for Mobil items I don't already have!
Re: A Couple Road Trip Pictures
minuteman #747634 Sat Apr 25 2020 05:05 PM
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I wish I had the time that Kim, Peter, Clifford and others had to put in the effort, failure, hard work and inhaling dust and animal feces. It does sound exhilarating when you "score" the big one. I soon realized I had no time nor the persona to knock on doors and get rejected and or threatened. It takes a "special" person to do all that. That's why I pay the price and raise the cash by working instead of picking 2-3 months of the year (for many years) it would take to build a collection. My hat goes off to these fellows (and the ones who have not told their tales) for their successes. Great stories.

Re: A Couple Road Trip Pictures
minuteman #747637 Sat Apr 25 2020 06:28 PM
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Hi Fred I'm not offended but I want to set the record strait , my experience was 99% positive when meeting people , there was a time or two when people seemed bothered and I would never push it . I would be friendly and polite and just leave and not bug them again, on the other hand I had one family invite me in to have lunch which I did and I've gone to town and had breakfast with some of these people as well as kept in touch long after . The people out on the farms and small towns here in Utah , Idaho , Wyoming are for the most part the friendliest people in the country . And I've always had a full time job and still do for just a little longer so everything was done years ago and on the weekends .

Re: A Couple Road Trip Pictures
Wasatch Man #747639 Sat Apr 25 2020 07:04 PM
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Originally Posted by Wasatch Man
The people out on the farms and small towns here in Utah , Idaho , Wyoming are for the most part the friendliest people in the country.

This couldn’t be truer. I went to school in southeastern Idaho which is where I met Peter (remember that 7’ Sinclair sign Peter??). I would stop off to ask about a pump or sign out on a farm and more often than not find myself invited inside with a glass of lemonade in my hand before anyone asked what in the heck I was doing there!

I just saw this thread! Thanks Kim and Peter for keeping it going. Peter, I can’t do as a good a job as you in relating stories with pictures because I’ve always been awful about chronicling my adventures. But I’ll do a couple. Here’s one...

A few years back I was out shopping for a four wheeler for my wife. I found myself in a little independent shop in Portland. As I’m checking out their inventory I look in to the service area and there stuffed in the corner is 1/2 of a Wayne double showcase. Couldn’t believe it. I got the initial “not for sale” but, undeterred, I worked with the guy over the next few months. Turns out all he really wanted was a cool pump to look at so I found him a nice replacement and hauled the showcase home. Story goes that the original pump was split in half and book-ended the spiral driveway in an old auto dealership in Portland. Pump was sold to a collector in Indiana who happened to have another 1/2 to the same pump! It was sold again to its current owner who put it all back together and restored it. If Eric wants to share a picture of the restored pump that would be great. Here it is as I found it:

89242CC6-BA1A-44F0-A434-B767CD65DAEE.jpeg
Re: A Couple Road Trip Pictures
minuteman #747643 Sat Apr 25 2020 08:02 PM
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Kim, thank you for the clarification. It was and is a beat down to go out junking/picking. Most doors you bang on are gone, busy, don't have time, etc. and think you are there to take advantage of them. We are summarizing years of stories to be entertaining and fun to read. I have some more "mother load" stories, but old pickers were telling me it was over when I was looking 20 years ago. Like Kim said "the harder you work, the luckier you are". In Kim'a stories, the guys always say, "there is nothing up there". 90% of the time, that is true. We are not telling those stories, just the good ones. Love the thread and interest!


By the way Eric, that brain fart stung a little more than some when the box sold for $310K and I probably could have got the whole bunch for $2K. LOL. All memories now.

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