A No Reserve Auction By Mecum, You Think I Could Buy One For A Buck?

When an auction has this in it, you know its gonna be interesting

Now, first off, this collection is very very cool, and we like the folks at Mecum. But. The last huge no reserve auction ( Warner Auction) they did had a small bit of drama behind the scenes.  So, I suppose it’s like the rest of the culture. And the world of buying and selling classic boats with ownership sometimes strange to document because of old state laws.  So will this be the case again? No reserve means just that? Right? Or in the case of lets say

Belle Isle Bear Cat

The Bear Cat, I only offer 100 bucks and NO ONE! That means you, bids. Do I get it for 100 bucks? Somehow I doubt that will happen. But that is the idea behind No Reserve, To entice you into thinking that one of these boats could go for nothing, and the market will find the price.

1937 Gar Wood 27′ Triple Cockpit Runabout – Built for Aviation Pioneer Thomas Sopwith

Or how about the Cool slick Cobra? Do you leave it like this? Hell ya! How bad ass is that sucker. You would have the only one, thats for sure.

Yup, “that” Cobra, and the car as well is in the Auction

Or Miss Cincinnati? Not the this one. Really, we need to point this out?

Ya! Photo Courtesy of Retrospace.org

THIS ONE, The boat one.

Miss Cincinnati

How about getting into the Vintage Racing scene?

Yikes! Switzer Craft


There is alot more on the site. Enjoy!





17 replies
  1. Mr. Cincinnati
    Mr. Cincinnati says:

    Jim was one interesting character and I’ve known quite a few…..He had boats that dreams are made of, including the Maltese Falcon with the V-12 Kermath. The Belle Isle Bearcat has Russ Pouilot decks and transom (I stood on the keel in the front cockpit one day and my chin barely reached the deck) with a Harry Miller V-12 Liberty, the Hackercraft specifically built for Walter P. Chrysler that had twin Chryslers, the Cobra that he purchased new from Chris Craft then crafted the custom bits to match with an engine that turned one way and the trans the other to negate the torque that caused the factory Cobras to flip, the Gar Wood built for Mr. Sopwith with twins from the factory (unheard of), plus all the other boats, cars, motorcycles, gun collection….oh, almost forget “Clyde”, the ape that he befriended and lived with him and Sally until he passed.
    He employed the best restorers like Mayea’s and Morins, Kennedy’s and more; say what you will about this “character” but when you say “a life well lived”, Jim did it all and then some. RIP my friend.

  2. m-fine
    m-fine says:

    It amazes me that anyone, buyer or seller, would continue to do business with Mecum. If you think it is just fake bidders and fraudulent no-reserve issues, google the fake 1967 Corvette story.

    We as a hobby should not do business with Mecum and Woodyboater should not be promoting their scams.

  3. Troy in ANE
    Troy in ANE says:

    There sure are a LOT of VERY COOL boats here, but the one that I would actually bid on is the 14′ Aristocraft Torpedo. But, then what. If I won it how would I get it? I could go out at some point but not right off. Anyone want to pick it up for me if I win the bid?

    • Jim Staib
      Jim Staib says:

      I’ll save up the $210. $100 for the bidders card, $100 bid, $10 buyers premium. It’s only four hours. I can run down with a flatbed. You keep Casper occupied.

  4. Jim Staib
    Jim Staib says:

    Jim once told me he bought the Cobra without power and installed Cadillac power with a V-drive. He thought it worked better than the factory straight drive. He then supercharged the engine. Then put an overdrive in the V-drive. Then overdrive on the supercharger. At that point I realized no matter what I did some damn bass boat would still go flying by me. So I stopped. (Better than a pontoon boat)😂

    • Barry Wolf
      Barry Wolf says:

      I knew Jim for quite a few years. We took this Cobra out on Indian lake in 1990. We were cruising along and a Baja was running along side giving us the Thumbs Up and then he thought he would just speed up and leave us. Jim pulled the throttle and gave it just enough to go past him(maybe Low 60’s). What an awesome boat. The caulk in the deck is Gold leaf and the blown Caddie sounds so beautiful!!

  5. Dick Dow
    Dick Dow says:

    I love all the Switzer Craft models – particularly the flying wing – which came out of Seattle and I saw in a local private collection back in 1989. Always wondered where it went… Is that Sea Sled really only 12 feet? What a cutie!

  6. Riva Della
    Riva Della says:

    Matt, m-fine, and Dave; pretty bad taste to air your dirty laundry in a story that could/should have celebrated Jim Streets amazing life & collection. Bash Mecum et al? Fine, do it in a separate story, don’t sully this one. Leaving a bad taste in my limited edition robusta uganda double espresso….

    • m-fine
      m-fine says:

      Riva Della, get a grip. It is not only bad taste, but also immoral to advertise a Mecum auction without warning readers and potential bidders about the very well documented history of fraud. If the story of Jim Streets has been sullied it was done by whoever chose to bring Mecum onboard.

  7. Mr. Cincinnati
    Mr. Cincinnati says:

    The Sea Sled was called an “Overnighter” and Jim bought it from the original owner from what I understand. It is too cool.

  8. Jim Veal
    Jim Veal says:

    I go to a lot of auctions. All types. They all have the possibility of shills. I’ll bet the second auction ever held had them. Why would anybody think one auction house is more terrible than the next. It’s there job to get as much as they can for their consigner.

  9. floyd r turbo
    floyd r turbo says:

    Not sure this is celebrating Jim Street’s life without a bio. I did some searching and found little on his life and none here except his possessions. Re: auction’s: I guess I have an expectation that they would be honest in their dealings/proceedings. I guess I am naive. After reading about the Warner debacle I would be wary. One occasionally hears about the “chandelier bidders” where auctioneers point to some ghost bidder in the back row. Mecum has made their bed, its up to us to be aware.

  10. Jim V
    Jim V says:

    Not just Mecum. I’ve watched them back up a price on Live TV at Barrett. It happens lots. Go to any car auction. You go to any sale/auction with all the allowance money you can afford to spend after you’ve done your research and hope it’s within your price. Unreserved also means there is no reserve set by the consignor and will sell to the highest bidder. Whether his name is Art and he’s over there with his back against the wall.

  11. Ducraft
    Ducraft says:

    Jim was an amazing man. When you were with him , you knew his knowledge base was very deep. He loved everything mechanical, saw the beauty in the engine and loved the art that surrounded it. He also loved Clyde, like a son. Very fortunate to have met him…..

    • Barry Wolf
      Barry Wolf says:

      I agree Ducraft. Jim was always thinking of ways to customize things. He and I or he and I and Sally made several trips to look at or pick up parts. Always an adventure! Jim loved his animals a lot more than people. I am honored to have known him!

Comments are closed.