It’s got the stage now that whenever anyone mentions those Holy Grail words; ‘Barn Find’ and the Internet goes into meltdown, with 50% excitement, awe and wonder, and 50% total cynicism.
Many it seems, just can’t believe that there are still gems out there waiting to be found. Well, in my own experience such finds do still happen. Only last summer I paid a visit to my local (and very fine) Veedub builders and repairers, Strictly Aircooled just outside Chelmsford. It seems I had arrived on a very interesting day, as they had just taken delivery of a ludicrously low mileage early seventies Beetle which was a genuine one-lady-owner in original form. It even smelt pretty fresh inside and – the window winders worked as if new. It’s the little things…
There’s two types of find that seems to occur; there’s the cars that are stored – in full working order – in a dry, clean garage (as per my local Beetle) – and then there’s the shells and rusting parts that are stored in dusty dark out-houses – the legendary so-called barn find.
Kansas barn find
Recently rumours appeared on the Internet of another mega-barn find, fuelled by a tantalising picture of some dusty split window Beetles lined up together in what looks like a corrugated building, or a Quonset hut. Social media and Facebook spread the news and the VW forums lit up with some detective work that Sherlock Holmes might (or might not) have been proud of.
The story that is finding its way to the surface appears to suggest that the hoard sits in the ‘big sky’ state of Kansas awaiting sale following the owner’s death. A little digging and the saga trails back a year or so when the news of the find first emerged, then nothing.
Up until now that is. I’ve tracked the rumoured barn find to a Facebook group (Air Cooled VW Cars And Parts For Sale) where an individual called Jack Quaif has posted further pictures verifying the vehicles existence. Quaif says the find consists of split window Beetles, a couple of oval window Beetles, two split window Campervans and a bay window Campervan. The most recent post states that the parts are being sold off to enthusiasts all over the mid-west at present, with sealed bids being taken on the cars with the aim to sell them by the 15th (presumably May, as sealed bids are being accepted until the end of April).
So what of the condition?
Apparently the oval and the bus were able to have their engines turned over with minimal effort. It’s not just a VW find though, BMW (328s), Porsche (356 Speedster) and Ford (‘Deuce’ coupé) get a look in. Various rebuilt (with German parts) VW air-cooled engines are apparently on offer too as well as tons of NOS parts.
So how did the first rumours of this find manage to just go stale for so long? Well, apparently legal complications are the presumed reasons. Currently though, we still have no information on any official outlets for placing bids, though there are many more people coming forward with pictures on a daily basis verifying the sale to be true. If you know any more about the facts behind this fascinating barn find, please comment below.