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British Heritage Certificates

rossco

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Years ago, out of curiosity, I submitted the specifics of my 100 to be certified. The answer back; no records. Recently, thinking that was maybe a fluke, I resubmitted, hoping more records had been found or some such thing. Once again, nothing. Who else has had this experience? I'm certain I'm not the only one. If this has been written about on the forum maybe someone can point me to the thread
 

Kainopong

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I cannot say I had the best experience with the BMHTC process - If you are not opposed to calling them that may help. I think you are at the mercy of the researcher. My engine type was wrong on my first certificate...they corrected that for my 100-6 but it was missing the Abington allocation number which they eventually located and issued another correction.
 
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rossco

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Thanks for the reply. I've wondered how many others have had issues. I've seen reports over the years about the lack of attention to details in the manufacture of the Healey. Maybe the guy in charge of writing down numbers went home with the flu that day. Or maybe he went home to make a baby. The problem I'm seeing is, it can be a penalty in certain situations if you can't certify your car. In the old days one could value a car based on its appearance, mechanical condition, service records, etc. Today that doesn't seem to be enough. Put the car on the market or go to auction and one of the first things that pops up is the issue of the cert. I know my numbers match because I have early service records passed down from the original owner. Oh well, it is what it is. I'm not that anal about it anyway. The car is a nearly 70 year step child with no adoption papers. It's still a fabulous machine.
 

Editor_Reid

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rossco, you mentioned one of my most-hated phrases: "numbers match[ing]."
Auction Report graphic 2021 04 LET ME KNOW IF THERE ISN'T REALLY ROOM FOR THIS AND I'LL USE IT...jpg

I always think about all of the very, very many Healeys whose engine lost its number plate somewhere along the line, but it has been replaced by one from Clarke Spares. The problem is, no matter what engine is in the car now, it can have the "right number" on the engine ID plate. In that way the engine really is "matching" numbers, even though it's a replacement block.

I have mocked this "matching numbers culture" with a fun little exercise concerning one of my Sprites. It's a Bugeye and so the original engine was, of course, a 948cc, but like most Bugeyes it had a 1275 "retro-planted" (I just made that up). The 1275 didn't have a number plate on it at all, so I got one with the correct number for the original and long-gone 948 and put it on the 1275. I may have the only numbers-matching 1275cc Bugeye in the world.
 

Healey Nut

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I don’t think “ matching numbers “ meant a thing until Barrett Jackson came along on the TV . It then became a buzz phrase in the car world much like “ reaching out” is now and it’s totally useless just like “reaching out” is .(I hate that idiotic corporate jargon )
Anybody can have a ”matching numbers “ car tks to ID plate reproducers .
Personally unless it’s a rare model like a 100M or a BN7 etc does it really matter as long as it has the correct parts in it .
Many cars have different engines and gearboxes for a whole myriad of reasons .
I have had to replace the original “matching numbers” block in my full ”matching numbers” BT7 as the original was cracked .
I took time to fine a period correct replacement with the same casting numbers but I won’t be playing switcheroo with the ID plates .
JMHO as they say .
 

Editor_Reid

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I don’t think “ matching numbers “ meant a thing until Barrett Jackson came along on the TV

I think it started with the Corvette people long before B-J auctions, but I'm not sure of the etymology. In any case it quickly spread perhaps thanks to B-J.

Today it's mostly something for people with little knowledge to throw around to make themselves look knowledgable. If you don't know enough about a given make or model to ask an intelligent question, but you want to participate in a conversation about it, "Is it matching numbers?" is one way to open your mouth without a seeming a total fool.

It is better to remain silent and be thought a fool, than to open one's mouth and remove all doubt. - Credited variously.
 

John Turney

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At some point, in the, hopefully distant, future, when my Healey goes up for sale, the first sentence of the ad will be: “If you’re looking for a a numbers matching car, read no further, but if you’re looking for a a Healey that looks and drives like it should, read on.”
 

BJ8Healeys

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"Matching numbers" in for sale ads is meaningless unless photos of the plates are shown, along with a certificate. It's incredible how many BJ8s (and other models, I'm sure) have reproduction plates, or original plates belonging to another car. All this doesn't matter so much unless you want to be sure your car is the one that left the factory with that same identity. As BJ8 Registrar, I spend a LOT of time trying to help owners who have discovered their car is not what they thought it was and want to return it to its original identity (and history).
I encourage all potential owners of BJ8s to contact the registry to see if there is previous information about it before putting down their money to buy it. If they want to buy it anyway, that's fine; but they should have all the information before they decide.
I just found another misidentified car up for auction at Gooding & Co. The VIN plate said it was 37558, but everything on the car except the VIN plate said it was 41864. If that kind of stuff is important to you, pay attention to the numbers.
 

BJ8Healeys

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By the way, Gooding pulled it from the auction and the owner is now trying to get the VIN and title corrected. It seems to be very easy to get a car registered with the wrong number in the firstr place, but generally is like pulling teeth at the DMV to get them to change it.
 
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rossco

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Thanks to all. These comments reaffirm my thoughts on the matter. In a diverse group of this size I realize there are all levels of concern for correctness in all details. I won't judge anyone in this regard. Different strokes.
 

HealeyRick

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Very timely discussion as I've just penned (ok, typed) my next "Auction Report" column for the Healey Marque (should be in the April issue, I think) on the subject of matching numbers on Healeys. My take, to boil it down, is except for a few special cars it's "bunk". The ability to get repro chassis and motor numbers has really made it laughable, although folks with years of experience can generally spot the fake id plates. Bring A Trailer is a happy hunting ground to see the repro plates as they generally include nice pictures of them in their auctions. And it's surprising just how many cars with IDs that just don't match what the car came with originally.
 

vette

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vette

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Reid mentioned the Corvettes being possibly the origination of the matching numbers concept. I have own Corvettes for over 40 years and it was a valid concern for corvette owners as long as I can remember. But I had never heard of the concept applied to other cars until more recent times. The application is not the same as it is with the Corvettes. The engine number on a Corvette engine as the same digits as the VIN number. It’s not just a record somewhere which might same that such and such engine with a particular number was installed in a car with another number as the VIN. The Corvette truly was built with the engine number and the VIN being the same. All other applications of the concept just mean that the component has numbers that fall within the build timeline of the rest of the car. Some case , as with the Healey, do have an engine number that is certified as being the factory installed engine but it doesn’t truly match the VIN with the same digits as with the Corvette.
 

HealeyRick

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Reid mentioned the Corvettes being possibly the origination of the matching numbers concept. I have own Corvettes for over 40 years and it was a valid concern for corvette owners as long as I can remember. But I had never heard of the concept applied to other cars until more recent times. The application is not the same as it is with the Corvettes. The engine number on a Corvette engine as the same digits as the VIN number. It’s not just a record somewhere which might same that such and such engine with a particular number was installed in a car with another number as the VIN. The Corvette truly was built with the engine number and the VIN being the same. All other applications of the concept just mean that the component has numbers that fall within the build timeline of the rest of the car. Some case , as with the Healey, do have an engine number that is certified as being the factory installed engine but it doesn’t truly match the VIN with the same digits as with the Corvette.
Dave, one of the 100 experts will be able to fill in the details, but some of the 100s had "unified production numbers" where the engine number and chassis number matched. However, it doesn't mean much when a new engine plate is so easily obtainable.
 

Editor_Reid

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I think that, at least outside of the Corvette world, "numbers matching" means that they match the build records - they match the car's "birth certificate" - not that the chassis and engine numbers are the same number.

However, with later Healey 100s the numbers kinda match. For example, my BN2 is chassis number ("Car No.") BN2L230614, and the engine is number 1B230614M.

I'm waiting to see an engine ID plate reading "ORIGINAL ENGINE," and then the owner could claim that yes, it is unequivocally the original engine ... see? (However, I doubt Clarke Spares would make one like that for you ... but a trophy shop would likely to be quite happy to accommodate you with this idea.)
 

vping

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That should fetch a premium price for being "Ultra Rare".
Nice. I did this to mine as well and it must be Ultra-Ultra rare as I may have the only numbers-matching 1380cc Bugeye in the world. LOL.

I dealt with BMHT for a few Heritage Certs, the last being the Bugeye. At first I could not get the info needed and when i spoke to them was able to clarify and got it. Not sure if the records are any different for the 100.

BTW - I like the "ORGINAL ENGINE" idea for the ID plate. I'll have to make this one next!
 

vette

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Reid’s point that the numbers match the build records is my understanding of this numbers thing for what I will say is almost all makes except Corvette. A significant point about the Corvette numbers is that the engine number is not on a tag, it is stamped on a flat section on the upper block. It is very hard to change it but some have tried, usually without success. The effort is usually noticeable. There is an exception in the Corvette situation that if the engine was damaged beyond repair within the warranty period and it was replaced by a factory replacement engine then the number will not match the VIN but it has a letter code in it that designates it as a factory replacement engine.
BACK TO HEALEYS: Reid mentioned that
a chassis number and engine number might be very close match. When you say ‘chassis number’ do you mean VIN?
 

Editor_Reid

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Reid mentioned that a chassis number and engine number might be very close match. When you say ‘chassis number’ do you mean VIN?

Yes, the terms "chassis number" and "Car No." are the same as VIN. It's just that the term VIN is an Americanism and didn't come into use when Healeys were made, so many of us throw-backs still say "chassis number."
 
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