Lot Number

1916 Smith Flyer C Motorette

Sold For $18,700

Inclusive of applicable buyer's fee.

RM | Auctions - HERSHEY 10 - 11 OCTOBER 2019 - The Merrick Auto Museum Collection

Chassis No.
  • Excellent Smith Flyer
  • Sympathetic freshening
  • Lightweight, but tons of fun!

The Smith Flyer had its origins in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. A buckboard in the Waltham Orient idiom, it was shorter by ten inches and a full foot narrower in track. It was made by A.O. Smith, a company well known today for things like water heaters and farm silos. In the early part of the twentieth century, A.O. Smith stamped chassis frames for almost all the minor-make assembled cars and made axle housings.

In 1914 Smith obtained the rights to the Wall Auto Wheel, a British power package with an air-cooled engine attached to a chain-driven wire wheel. It had become popular overseas for motorizing bicycles. Smith made improvements, replaced the wire wheel with the disc variety, and eliminated the chain, driving the wheel directly from the engine shaft. The result became the Smith Flyer when attached to a small buckboard built by the American Motor Vehicle Company of Lafayette, Indiana. It went on the market in 1916.

This Smith Flyer was purchased by the Merrick Auto Museum in 2007. Previous owners have included George Lux of Shelbyville, Indiana. The entire vehicle has been freshened without disturbing the patina of the ash frame. The fenders and control components have been refinished in maroon paint, the fenders pinstriped in white. The bright ornamental elements have been replated.

An excellent example of the Smith Flyer, it will be an asset to any collection—and lots of fun!

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