Classic Cars

On the Road: 1924 Haynes Model 6 Sedan

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Group project undertaken by an Alberta museum aims to resurrect a car of which there may be 100 left

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Every Monday since last November, members of the Call of the West Museum have gathered at Al Millard’s shop on his land near Okotoks, Alberta.

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A group member always brings lunch. They start work at 9:00 a.m., take a sandwich break at noon, and continue until 3 or 3:30 p.m. Together they restore a rare 1924 Haynes automobile.

“It’s a long story,” Millard says of how the Call of the West Museum came to acquire the Haynes car. “Erhard Gorski had a maritime can full of three Haynes cars, and he was to sell them. I wasn’t immediately interested, but in a roundabout way, last October, the museum ended up with the cars and parts and we decided to do something with them.

Located in High River at the Ag Society rodeo grounds, the Call of the West Museum is dedicated to the preservation of automobiles, tractors, and oil memorabilia such as gas pumps and signs. Millard, who worked for 52 years in the refrigeration industry, pioneered the concept of the museum. It opened in 2013.

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“We emptied Erhard’s sea canister to see what we had,” Millard said. “There were three frames and three bodies, and we chose this one because it was a saloon and it was quite complete. We could build another car if we had another Haynes engine, so we’re looking for one.

Call of the 1924 Haynes automobile from the West Museum.
Pulled out of the sea storage container, this 1924 Haynes Model 6 chassis with newer bodywork appears to be in poor condition. However, a team of restoration enthusiasts from the Call of the West Museum in Alberta, within months, completely dismantled the car and made rapid progress towards its resurrection. Photo by Larry Kynoch

Elwood Haynes of Kokomo, Indiana, built his first car in his kitchen in 1893. When the start of his home’s single-cylinder gasoline engine didn’t go as planned, he paid brothers Edgar and Elmer Apperson to complete the work. Haynes named his ride “The Pioneer” and he passed a six-mile trial.

In 1898, the trio formed the Haynes-Apperson Automobile Company. Cars were built under this name until 1905, as the Apperson brothers had left in 1902, leaving Haynes to start the Haynes Automobile Company. Haynes vehicles were built until 1924 when the company declared bankruptcy.

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Haynes had a background in metallurgy and was one of the discoverers of stainless steel; he also invented the resistant alloy Stellite. Many mechanical advances, including the early use of an oil pump instead of relying on splash lubrication, were used in Haynes automobiles.

A single example of wood restoration is the steering wheel. Photo by Ken Edgecombe

The history of the Call of the West Haynes car dates back to the collection of Stan Reynolds of Wetaskiwin, Alberta. Reynolds originally purchased the car from Barney Pollard of Detroit, who amassed a collection of over 1,000 vintage vehicles before auctioning them off in 1976.

Millard’s 30-by-52-foot workshop is equipped with a lathe, milling machine, and some sheet metal gears. He usually works on vintage tractors in space, but after the museum team dismantled the Haynes car, it took priority.

A lot of research has been done and Millard believes their Haynes Model 60 undercarriage has been updated with a newer Haynes brougham body. The sedan features unique oval windows behind the rear passenger doors, and the group is determined to resurrect the rare automobile.

“We each have different skill sets,” Millard says of the crew. “There are about 10 of us, and some have mechanical skills, and some have carpentry skills. I fit in wherever I can. »

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The chassis was sandblasted and painted, and the straight-six engine stripped down to the crank. Surprisingly, for a car that’s almost 100 years old, Millard says there was very little wear on the internal engine components.

Everything needed a good cleaning, and Millard machined a new water pump shaft and also modified the timing cover to accept a modern oil seal. The antique carburettor was a complicated affair but has been successfully rebuilt. With a stock coil installed, the motor, which should produce around 50 horsepower, was put into service less than two weeks ago.

“We haven’t had it running long because we’re waiting for a radiator to be built,” Millard says. “We had to find clutch plates and use some from a Hyster winch clutch between the engine and the three-speed transmission. The engine runs beautifully.

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Al Millard in his shop with the 1924 Haynes automobile from Call of the West.
Al Millard in his shop with the 1924 Haynes automobile from Call of the West. Photo by Ken Edgecombe

The wooden wheels have been restored and fitted with Firestone tires. As of this writing, the group is assembling much of the body woodwork and securing it to the chassis. Millard expects the car to be ready to be sent for upholstery by the end of April.

“There aren’t many Haynes cars around,” Millard says. “The best guess is that there are less than 100, and this one will be part of the Call of the West collection and released and driven on special occasions.”

Greg Williams is a member of the Automobile Journalists Association of Canada (AJAC). Do you have a column tip? Contact him at 403-287-1067 or [email protected]


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