Restoring a Piece of Antiquity
We sell antique trolley cars and spare parts to cities and collectors throughout the world. We specialize in the restoration of trolley car equipment from cars built prior to 1918. Not only do we maintain the authenticity of the car, but we also attempt improvements, bringing them up to safety codes for this day and age.
Because we work with the original castings we are able to fabricate antique parts. We work with brass, bronze, steel, iron, aluminum, wool, fabric and leather using methods from the car’s original period of construction. You can be assured that we can create any part needed to repair your streetcar. Our innovative craftsmen are equipped to help you restore your car to its former glory and help get it operational for you.
INDUSTRIAL AGE (PRE 1918) STREETCARS
An Introduction to the Industrial age of streetcars.
Streetcar Investment Group has four small firms, each of which specialize in some parts, portions or whole streetcars/trams.
We discovered over many years, that we could not cover all the details of this older industry alone. There are precision parts like the valve components in GE-WH switch groups that need what I call the space ship and the space needle. These are precision parts down to .003". Guild quality patterns for brass or steel and the seriously complex core boxes needed to create giant brass brake wheels, each require a different skill set.
In the sub categories fo this Web site you will find some interesting photos of the patterns and cores that we have had to make. The reason for the cut off date of 1918 is twofold.
A. Spare parts for trams/streetcars of 1918 and older were continued to be made and supplied for 20 plus years after 1918. Exports to Europe continued to about the middle 1920's in the form of whole trams, in kits (some assembly required) to Portugal. We specialized in tram parts up 1918. It is our aftermarket.
B. After the 1918 industrial era, streetcars/trams began to change. The "Electronic" era had begun and cities either switched to buses or moved to modern new concepts and design including all manner of electronics,. Our service to the industry was to the few who found industrial age trams profitable and had an expanding market for historic cars which were getting harder to find. Gales Creek Enterprises of Oregon continued with its shop in Gales Creek until the late 1980's. They made the last full size horse drawn Horse cars and overhauled (refurbished) Australian trams from Melbourne. Overseas connections were made with their roll on roll off steamship service trailers.
2015 (May) finds the last new wood steel streetcar of 1906 design, completed. From the wheels up to the trolley pole all wood is new and the the steel is new or re-engineered. Changes of course. Safety glass, headlights that send a beam over 150 feet, windshield wiper and tail lights. The safety changes were done to match California more stringent codes but the wheels are for street railway service, not railroad. It is after all a 1906 streetcar, only improved for todays safety requirements.