Thursday, 18 January 2024 11:25

Motor Museums in Schramberg, Germany (1) - The Steim Automobile Collection

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Schramberg is a town situated in the eastern Black Forest. As with many other black forest communities, industrialisation began in Schramberg in the 19th century. In 1861 the Junghans clock factory was founded in Schramberg. At the beginning of the 20th century Junghans became the biggest clock factory worldwide with 3000 employees. The founder of the Steim car collection is the entrepreneur Hans-Jochem Steim from Schramberg. Steim is no stranger to the watch industry or the company, having made his fortune through a business manufacturing high precision springs, which had been supplying Nivarox hairsprings to Junghans since the 1930s. Steim, already enthusiastic about automobiles from his youth, bought his first vintage car (a 1928 Ford model A) in the United States in 1977. Gradually, numerous vehicles from various automobile manufacturers from 1902 to the present day were added to his collection.
  • Another milestone in the history of the Steim car collection was the takeover of the Andrew Adler collection from Toledo (Ohio, USA) in the spring of 2005. This ultimately gave the Steim family reason to make the vehicles available to the public in their hometown of Schramberg. In 2006, the former building of the watch spring factory was reconstructed, creating a museum with an exhibition area of 3,000 square meters divided over two floors. The museum was officially opened in May 2007. In addition to the Steim family's vehicles, loans are also on display. About 150 cars are exhibited with good information boards. The special thing about this collection is not only the variety of different brands, but also the fact that most vehicles are ready to be used.                                                                                                 
  • The story of a 1910 Brasier CM2 Tourer is spectacular. It starts tragically with an accident in 1916. The car ends up in Swiss Zuger lake due to an evasive maneuver, killing the 62-year-old driver and his 26-year-old son. In 1967, a diving club from Zürich discovered the wreck. It was located at a depth of 25 meters. The idea arises to fish it up. With much effort, the remains of the Brasier literally surfaces two years later. Due to the constant temperature of 5 degrees Celsius in which the car was been kept all these years, the wooden parts were reasonably well preserved, even the wheels were still intact. After an extensive ten-year restoration project, the car was able to drive the road again. Just 150 six-cylinder Brasiers were built and this car is the last remaining six-cylinder Brasier in the world. So the rescue operation was definitely worth it.                                                                             
  • The Adler Super Trumpf from 1937 was one of the cars which participated in the 24 Hours of Le Mans and the 24 hours of Spa in 1938. In preparation for the 1939 Le Mans race the car was modified with a 2 litre engine and a smaller radiator grille. For some reason the car wasn’t entered for the race and in 1939 the Alder factory sold the car. The owner kept the car until 1947 when it was sold to an American Air Force Colonel. The car was shipped to the United States and in 1954 a certain Mr. Adler (already mentioned above and no relationship with the marque!) acquired the car and kept it for a long time. In the 70s he decided to have the body of car in it’s original color again and started sanding of the dark blue paint. The project stalled and Mr.Adler died in 2004. The car was sold and in October 2005 it was shipped back to Europe and mechanically prepared to be shown at the Le Mans Classic that year. The body of the Adler is still as it was when Mr.Adler sanded it down.                                                                                          
  • Mr. Adler was a serious classic car collector as he also owned the 1935 Mercedes-Benz 500K which is on display in the museum. In 1935 the car was ordered at the Mercedes-Benz factory by the manager of the Ritz Hotel in London. The car was shipped without body to the UK and the British company Windovers designed and fabricated the body. The company was a trusted bodymaker for Rolls-Royce, hence the similarity of this car with Rolls Royces from the same period. In 1999 Mr.Steim was so fortunate to buy the 500K from the Andrew Adler. The restoration took 13 years.                                                                                              
  • Another highlight of the collection is the Maybach DS8 Zeppelin from 1932. The brown and beige car is in impeccable condition The bodywork by Spohn from Ravensburg is impressive and chic at the same time. DS is an abbreviation of Doppel Sechs (double six), a reference to the twelve-cylinder engine. The capacity is 8 liters, the power is 210 hp. The car was ordered by a female bank owner from Paris with right-hand drive so the chauffeur could quickly open the door and let her out.                                                                                                   
    Other rarities are the 1959 Mercedes 300 of former Federal President Heinrich Lübke, a De Dion Bouton from 1902, the 1914 Simplex La France and the 1922 Mercer Series 5 Raceabout. The Museum is open from Tuesday until Sunday from 10.00 h. to 17.00 h.
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Read 702 times Last modified on Friday, 19 January 2024 08:35