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Restoration of 1926 #15157 C7
( From our correspondent Josef W. )
After 40 years in hiding an attractive 1926 C7 " Lumineuse " came back to daylight recently. To be precise the car formed part of the reserve collection of the Vienna Technical Museum in Austria and it was now decided that a restoration to be undertaken thanks to a local enthusiast of the make.

Warehouse exit or entry to the garage?

In order to get to know the individual history of the car research still has to be done. What is known is that the car was given to a certain Mr. Henry G., a pioneer in vintage car collecting. This gentleman is famous for having saved many classic car in the ‘50s, one of them an equally rare Aérodyne model (now part of a significant Swiss collection). As goes the story Mr. G. was offered this C7 “for free”, keeping it in his collection for some year and finally doing a swap with the Technical Museum at the end of the sixties.

What is sure is that the vehicle was used a lot. Thus, it was certainly extensively repaired in period to keep it on the road. As well as repainting the body red/black, a number of changes to small details typical to the “Lumineuse” body have been made in order to keep it working.

Nevertheless, it is a great chance that this C7 stayed in a condition very close to the original.


Restoration was started in August 2009 by the new owner with a detailed analysis of the car’s condition, an almost "archaeological" approach. Indeed, the original grey painting has just been found under the rear trunk. As well as, hidden in the cockpit, a fragment of the original fabric.

Regarding the engine, the good methods of preservation applied by the museum during all these years allowed to turn the engine on the crank and even taking the car for a little tour after some very smoky starting up! The perspectives for the restoration seem to be good. Of course, the engine is going to be dismantled.

Note the Scottish tissue in tune with the body painting.

Since the car reflects 40 years of continuous story as a running car, details being altered on the way, the question about restoring back to original comes up. But what is “original” after 40 years of individual history? The car features some period options, such as a “reduction drive” allowing the former owner to climb at the top of the "Grossglockner" mountain (the highest summit of Austria with a 3.798 meter height)! Our only witness left being a windscreen sticker.

The restoration team includes a specialist of WWI aeronautics who confirmed that the methods of construction of the "Lumineuse" are identical to those used in aircraft manufacturing of the period. A good example are bandages discovered during the dismantling of seats used to strengthen the light wood of the wooden seat back frames. This aeronautic specialist is going to work on all the wooden elements of the passenger compartment and the body.

We think that during the restoration a lot of surprises will be brought to light.

To be continued...

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