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Duchess

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  • #232460
    Andre Boudreault
    Participant

    @fermidable

    What is the difference between a Duchess and a Grand Duchess limited edition (250 kit)???

    Why the rear wheels of these car are not in the center of the wheel opening ??? The wheels are more to the front.

    Finally are they good kit with the VW engine ?

    Andre

    #237680
    Steve Crites
    Participant

    @ringo

    Andre,

    From what I’ve learned the only difference was trim and options.

    A retired Classic worker told me all frames from the factory were the same. They could hang different suspensions and engines on them according to buyers specs. This may be why the wheels are ahead in the wells. They compromised position accuracy for ease of assembly with different drive trains. ???

    Just my 2 cents.

    Ringo

    #237681
    Steve Crites
    Participant

    @ringo

    RE: above

    For instance, the Grand Duchess Royale package had the hidden luggage area in the back and the Dayton wire wheels.

    Ringo

    #237682
    Paul Mossberg
    Keymaster

    @pmossberg

    Andre,

    Sorry to disagree with my on-line friends out there, but there is no difference in the kit itself. Classic Roadsters’ MG kit was properly called the “Grand Duchess”. I’ll show you the front page of my assembly manual if you want. 🙂

    It’s simply easier to refer to the car as the Duchess. And that’s what we wll do.

    Royale might have been a packge of options that were otherwise available separately. My memory is foggy on that one.

    I’m not sure about Andre’s comment on “hidden” luggage space. All Duchess had space behind the seat. It’s not covered. And the standard roof cover covered only the folded roof. it did not cover the behind the seat storage. Class Roadsters did sell an optional tonneau cover for the entire passenger compartment.

    Beyond front vs. rear engine, the only difference you will see are options.

    Not sure about the front engine Duchess, but all of the VW based Duchess are a bit off on the rear wheels.

    When I built mine in 1982…I thought I had messed up. Over the years, as I have seen others, I realized I had done fine.

    I did trim back the front edges of the rear wheel wells. The cut as it came from the factory had to much flat area. Cutting it back made the off-center wheel look less off center. And it also corrected the profile of the rear fenders to more closely match an original TD.

    Except for that, the Duchess is a great kit. Good quality fiberglass. It uses reproduction MG parts for the grill, door handles, etc. Some other kits did too, but not all of them. It’s also very close to the original in terms of overall dimensions.

    I’ve got 26 years and counting on my Duchess.

    PMOSSBERG39751.8158564815

    Paul Mossberg
    Former Owner of a 1981 Classic Roadsters Ltd. Duchess (VW)
    2005 Intermeccanica Roadster

    If you own a TDr and are not in the Registry, please go to https://tdreplica.com/forums/topic/mg-td-replica-registry/ and register (you need to copy and paste the link)

    #237683
    Andre Boudreault
    Participant

    @fermidable

    Thanks Paul for the info..

    The Gr.Duchess in question has a name plate in the front storage compartiment ( all finished with carpet…very clean) where you can read “limited edition” and this car is # 21 out of 250. Was there only 250 Duchess produced or there was a special edition limited at 250 kit ??? (I can not post the photo of the name plate!!!) This one is black with real wire wheels.

    Andre

    #237684
    Andre Boudreault
    Participant

    @fermidable

    Paul here is the photo of the name plate

     

    fermidable39752.3731828704

    #237685
    Larry Murphy
    Participant

    @larry-murphy

     Hi Everyone, I may be jumping in where I should not ,but I think Ringo is referring to a front engine car and Paul is talking about VW based .I seem to remember a post by Ringo a while back about changing from a gas tank to a fuel cell . I think he was putting the cell in the rear of the car . If I am getting too smart  or just showing my ignorance please try to look over it. I am no where near as knowledgeable as Paul ,just trying to be helpful. Larry

    #237686
    Paul Mossberg
    Keymaster

    @pmossberg

    Hi Andre,

    Interesting. I’ll take a look at my id tag and see what it says. I’m sure mine does not say limited edition.

    But now I’m confused. Is this the same car as the one in your photo gallery? It’s VW based, right? I assume it is because of the carpet on the firewell under your id plate.

    Here’s why I ask.

    Every, and I mean EVERY, Classic Roadsters VW Duchess I have ever seen has a small step just in front of the rear fender, between the fender and the running board. It steps out over the outer portion of the rear suspension torsion tube. You can see it in the front 3/4 shot of my Duchess in the pmossberg gallery.

    I see other differences from what I know to be CR Duchess cars.

    The general profile of your rear fenders is not like any other Duchess I have seen. Compare it to mine.

    Classic Roadsters did not provide the cover over the behind-seat space. Their roof cover was basically a “bag”, open on the leading edge. You slip it over the folded roof and the front edge velcros closed.

    I can see the seat back in your car. But I cannot see the seats. Do you have a bench seat? Or are there separate seat bottoms? Duchess has a bench seat bottom.

    The front running lights/turn signals have lenses unlike the original
    TD. Duchess came with repro style turn signals. Again, see the ones on
    my car. The Duchess didn’t have the English flag either. And your windshield wipers are installed opposite from mine. Granted, these are
    minor points that could easily have been running changes during
    production.

    What year was your car built?

    I need to check my history files, but at one point Gary Rutherford (original CR founder/owner) sold Classic Roadsters to one of the other kit manufacturers. That company essentially sucked the money out of Classic Roadsters and left it for dead. Gary eventually bought the shell of the company back and they are still in business, albeit without the MG kit.

    It is possible your car comes from the post-Rutherford period and is another kit, badged and sold as a Duchess.

    Take a look at Ringo’s car, which I am certain is a Duchess. In particular, look at the rear fender line and the “step” between the running board and rear fender. And the wiper motor is installed the same as it is in my Duchess.

    Please understand, I’m not knocking anyone’s car. In fact, your MG is beautiful!

    But I built my car in
    1982 and have been around the kit car hobby ever since. I’m just trying
    to make some sense of what I see. The more I think about it, the more I believe your Duchess was produced after Gary Rutherford sold CR. And it is another high quality kit, branded as a Duchess.

    I look forward to reading more member responses to all this. Like I said at the start…I’m confused. 🙂

    Paul Mossberg
    Former Owner of a 1981 Classic Roadsters Ltd. Duchess (VW)
    2005 Intermeccanica Roadster

    If you own a TDr and are not in the Registry, please go to https://tdreplica.com/forums/topic/mg-td-replica-registry/ and register (you need to copy and paste the link)

    #237687
    Paul Mossberg
    Keymaster

    @pmossberg

    Hey Larry…never apologize for jumping in! The more the merrier.

    I agree the quote from the retired Classic guy must be referring to front engine chassis/suspensions.

    Paul Mossberg
    Former Owner of a 1981 Classic Roadsters Ltd. Duchess (VW)
    2005 Intermeccanica Roadster

    If you own a TDr and are not in the Registry, please go to https://tdreplica.com/forums/topic/mg-td-replica-registry/ and register (you need to copy and paste the link)

    #237688
    Andre Boudreault
    Participant

    @fermidable

    Paul

    The photos on the photo gallery are not from my car…it is a ford front engine and it was posted by error..I just removed them. I was to buy that ford TD but finally came back home without the car.

    The one I have presently and that I am  restoring is a Fiberfab VW.

    The Grand Duchesse is one that I want to buy and that I will drive next summer during the restoration of the Fiberfab.

    I am asking all these questions on the Gr.Duchess as I have to decide rapidly if I am buying it or not…

    Your help is very appreciated…Thanks

    My english not being perfect, I try to be as clear as possible..not always easy..sorry !!!

    I am posting a photo of the exterior of the Gr.Duchess

    Andre

    #237689
    Paul Mossberg
    Keymaster

    @pmossberg

    Hi Andre,

    Yup, that’s a Duchess alright. And looks like a very nice one! Go for it! 🙂

    And your English is great! No worries!

     

    Paul Mossberg
    Former Owner of a 1981 Classic Roadsters Ltd. Duchess (VW)
    2005 Intermeccanica Roadster

    If you own a TDr and are not in the Registry, please go to https://tdreplica.com/forums/topic/mg-td-replica-registry/ and register (you need to copy and paste the link)

    #237690
    Andre Boudreault
    Participant

    @fermidable

    Thanks Paul,

     Did you chek if your Duchess is marked as Grand Duchess or this one is a real “limited edition”. Any other member with a “limited edition” ?

    Thanks again for your help.

    Andre

    p.s. As soon as the Cdn dollar get better I will buy the car….Presently the exchange is very bad for us in Cda..

     

    #237691
    Steve Crites
    Participant

    @ringo

    Hi Gang;

    Sorry I didn’t make myself clear about the “hidden” space.

    It’s located behind a raise up hatch located at the back of the usually visible space behind the seat. Totally out of view, it is up under the lip of the cowl in the space where the ‘doghouse” would normally be on a VW model.  It’s approx 30 wide by 9 inches high by 12 deep.  Enough to hold a tool kit and jumper cables out of sight and a place to mount speakers. 

    Larry is right that this is what gave me problems when mounting my fuel cell in the back. Without that compartment I could have probably put a fifty gallon barrel up under there!

    I could post some pics if anyone is really curious.

    Oh yeah, my plate also has “limited edition” on it.

    Ringo

    #237692
    Steve Crites
    Participant

    @ringo

    Paul

    You’re right about the Duchess vs Grand Duchess.  I checked the old brochure I have and it is only referred to as the Grand Duchess.

    There were option packages that had names such as royale listed but no Duchess or Grand Duchess, only Grand Duchess. My bad

    My Duchess is supposedly made in ’84.  What year did CR make the switch in owners?

    Ringo

    #237693
    Paul Mossberg
    Keymaster

    @pmossberg

    Hey Ringo, I need to dig through old stuff to figure that out.

    Andre, no I didn’t check my id tag yet.

    Paul Mossberg
    Former Owner of a 1981 Classic Roadsters Ltd. Duchess (VW)
    2005 Intermeccanica Roadster

    If you own a TDr and are not in the Registry, please go to https://tdreplica.com/forums/topic/mg-td-replica-registry/ and register (you need to copy and paste the link)

    #237694
    Andre Boudreault
    Participant

    @fermidable

    Ringo, can you e-mail me some pictures.I am curious..What is the # of your limited edition….do you have wire wheels on your car ?

    Thanks

    Andre

    #237695
    Mark Hendrickson
    Participant

    @pink-mg

    I want that black car…Pleeeeez Santa!!!

    #237696
    Steve Crites
    Participant

    @ringo

    Andre

    Yeah, that is a beautiful duchess!
    My plate says limited edition but doesn’t have the *out of * number, just the serial number.

    My Duchess has wire wheels.  Check my photos on the site to see the wheels…..Unless you mean a picture of the compartment, which I can take this weekend and send along.

    Ringo

    #237697
    Paul Mossberg
    Keymaster

    @pmossberg

    Ringo,

    I’d like to see how the “compartment” is put together.

    Paul Mossberg
    Former Owner of a 1981 Classic Roadsters Ltd. Duchess (VW)
    2005 Intermeccanica Roadster

    If you own a TDr and are not in the Registry, please go to https://tdreplica.com/forums/topic/mg-td-replica-registry/ and register (you need to copy and paste the link)

    #237698
    Paul Mossberg
    Keymaster

    @pmossberg

    My Classic Roadsters ID tag does not say “Limited Edition” Just has the company and address and the year & serial number.

    I hope we find out what the limited edition cars are.

    Paul Mossberg
    Former Owner of a 1981 Classic Roadsters Ltd. Duchess (VW)
    2005 Intermeccanica Roadster

    If you own a TDr and are not in the Registry, please go to https://tdreplica.com/forums/topic/mg-td-replica-registry/ and register (you need to copy and paste the link)

    #237699
    Andre Boudreault
    Participant

    @fermidable

    Paul  ….Is there wire wheels on your Duchess ?

    Ringo …. Will you post pictures of the rear compartiment?

    Andre

    #237700
    Paul Mossberg
    Keymaster

    @pmossberg

    I did not order the optional wire wheels. Nor did I buy a st of wheels from Dayton. I ran wire wheel covers until about five years ago.

    Then I converted to a look as close to the original TD look as I could get. I took a set of VW chrome wheel covers and drilled the centers to accept reproduction TD hubcap medallions. I painted the VW steel wheels the correct color of gray for the original TD.

    You can view the result in my gallery… pmossberg

    Paul Mossberg
    Former Owner of a 1981 Classic Roadsters Ltd. Duchess (VW)
    2005 Intermeccanica Roadster

    If you own a TDr and are not in the Registry, please go to https://tdreplica.com/forums/topic/mg-td-replica-registry/ and register (you need to copy and paste the link)

Viewing 22 posts - 1 through 22 (of 22 total)
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