Cooper 997 on Bring A Trailer with odd body number matching Heritage Certificate

General Chat with an emphasis on BMC Minis & Other iconic cars of the 1960's. Includes information on MK1 Action days.
mnicoop63
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Cooper 997 on Bring A Trailer with odd body number matching Heritage Certificate

Post by mnicoop63 »

There is a Mini advertised as a 997 Cooper currently on Bring A Trailer that is up for auction and there are so many red flags about it I dont know where to start. To me it looks like a mid 1960 shell but I am not sure. The shell it self has had a lot of rust repair and for a seller who claims 55 years of experience I think he has completely screwed the pooch on this one. The front subframe appears misaligned so bad that the hole in the floor for the shifter had to be cut after all the body work was complete in order for it to fit. There are spacers between it and the shell up front on clutch side. It appears the subframe was cut to clear the foot wells on the bottom too. But all of that stuff (theres a lot more if you look at the pictures with a keen eye) isn't what has me baffled. It's the body number. It has a body number of A120xxx on the slam panel and the heritage certificate as well. For a March 1962 build I would expect it to be somewhere around perhaps A005500 to A006000. My june 62 997 Cooper is A0063xx. How did it get a body number of 120xxx? If it was a CKD mini wouldnt it still have body number close to mine and others of that period. I didn't think an MK1 Cooper ever got that high of a body number?

https://bringatrailer.com/listing/1962- ... cooper-11/
NZmember
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Re: Cooper 997 on Bring A Trailer with odd body number matching Heritage Certificate

Post by NZmember »

Got a ride height issue.
CooperTune
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Re: Cooper 997 on Bring A Trailer with odd body number matching Heritage Certificate

Post by CooperTune »

Were you interested in the car or just looking to fuss? Do you feel the car is wrong or the heritage cert is incorrect? I believe the car closed at $26,500 someone must have liked it. As for the 55-year claim, Bob and I are a couple months apart in age. I purchased my first car in 1965 and rebuilt it. My first mini came in 1968. As for ride height they all ride high with new springs and std length steel trumpets. I have just installed Hi-Los in a 79 Canadian 1000 which had trumpets shortened and has since sagged enough to rub front wheel wells. Steve (CTR)
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Pete
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Re: Cooper 997 on Bring A Trailer with odd body number matching Heritage Certificate

Post by Pete »

Seems to be a national sport nowadays for people to pick cars apart on that website.
mnicoop63
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Re: Cooper 997 on Bring A Trailer with odd body number matching Heritage Certificate

Post by mnicoop63 »

CooperTune wrote: Sun Oct 01, 2023 2:55 pm Were you interested in the car or just looking to fuss? Do you feel the car is wrong or the heritage cert is incorrect? I believe the car closed at $26,500 someone must have liked it. As for the 55-year claim, Bob and I are a couple months apart in age. I purchased my first car in 1965 and rebuilt it. My first mini came in 1968. As for ride height they all ride high with new springs and std length steel trumpets. I have just installed Hi-Los in a 79 Canadian 1000 which had trumpets shortened and has since sagged enough to rub front wheel wells. Steve (CTR)
Steve I am always interested in adding to my collection of Minis. This one however I would not want because there are to many issues with it. Way to many issues. Honestly I didn't and still don't know what to think of the body number and the heritage certificate. They both match and I suppose that is enough for most people. The problem I had was that every source of information on Mini Coopers that I have seen has the body number for MK1 Coopers ending in the 60,000 range. Andres Ditlev Clausager has the body numbers for mk1 Coopers ending at approximately 66247 in his book Essential Mini Cooper. John Parnell in his book Original Mini Cooper and Cooper S has the body number for mk1 coopers ending with the same number 66247. The mini in question has a body number just under twice that of 120xxx. I was hoping someone might have been able to explain why. My guess is that the Heritage Certificate has an error, possibly due to bad handwriting in the original BMC books. But like i said it is simply a guess. The Mini had a brand new chassis number tag because "it was missing". It would make sense to me that this mini was put together based on the heritage certificate. A new chaasis plate and a body number that doesnt seem to jive with any figures ive ever seen makes it highly suspect to me. The seller states the mini was very very original when he purchased it and in one of his comments he says that the front of the mini was original to the shell and that that body number plate was original to that front end based on the welds on the plate. That appears to me to be 100% rubbish. First the front end of the mini appears to be from a 1960 mini based on the FE number. Its pretty close to the one on my 60 mini. Now what really hurts his case of it being original or should I say very very original is that in his pictures; number 102 to be exact, it appears the body number tag had just been welded on to the slam pannel.

As for wanting to fuss I would have done it on BAT but couldnt bring myself to do it. Perhaps I should have pointed out that the shiney green paint was hiding a disaster of a build. That poor mini should have had all sorts of cross bracing welded in it before the entire floor was cut out of it. It should have been put on a jig becasue it had been wrecked at some point and it is still not correct. Even after all of the amazing welding the mini is not straight. The shell was pushed back and the front subframe is crooked because of it. So much that even the passengers door was cut to make it fit the opening. You can see in one of the pictures how the side of the door has a square cut out of it so the hinge screw could be moved rearward in the door. Obviously someone fell in love with the shiny green paint to the sum of 26k but that certainkly doesnt mean he didnt screw the pooch.
SMOKE GREY
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Re: Cooper 997 on Bring A Trailer with odd body number matching Heritage Certificate

Post by SMOKE GREY »

I’ve been watching this thread hoping someone would know the answer to the body number issue 😊 in the meantime I have been researching the US supplied 997 Coopers of 1962. From what I have found so far , then the body number issued to this green car is correct.
Many of the early 997 were supplied to Longbridge as painted and trimmed shells from Fisher and Ludlow. There are numerous cars with a body number not in the normal A***** sequence, it seems to be the cars built in twos and threes not the batches of 40-50. Theses other numbers fit in more with an 850. My thoughts were maybe the slower selling Super model trimmed shell got cooper mechanicals to meet demand/homolgation ?? The issue there of course is the gear change hole. Maybe FL gave an 850 number to a cooper shell occasionally, in error?? Be interesting to see how far this happened for. I do know of a 997 ,very original with known history from new with a ‘ non cooper body number’, interestingly also a green Austin.
Catmint
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Re: Cooper 997 on Bring A Trailer with odd body number matching Heritage Certificate

Post by Catmint »

SMOKE GREY wrote: Wed Oct 25, 2023 1:48 pm Many of the early 997 were supplied to Longbridge as painted and trimmed shells from Fisher and Ludlow. There are numerous cars with a body number not in the normal A***** sequence, it seems to be the cars built in twos and threes not the batches of 40-50. Theses other numbers fit in more with an 850. My thoughts were maybe the slower selling Super model trimmed shell got cooper mechanicals to meet demand/homolgation
Possibly a slight flaw in that theory is that at least some of the Supers were built by National Panels, certainly ours was. I certainly agree with the build numbers, the hornets and elfs were done a few at a time and the body and engine numbers are all over the place. I reckon they built a load of shells while tooled up, stuck them in a store and pulled them out as needed, so last in would be first out. At the end of the day BMC didn't care what the numbers were, they just wanted their £600 quid
mnicoop63
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Re: Cooper 997 on Bring A Trailer with odd body number matching Heritage Certificate

Post by mnicoop63 »

SMOKE GREY wrote: Wed Oct 25, 2023 1:48 pm I’ve been watching this thread hoping someone would know the answer to the body number issue 😊 in the meantime I have been researching the US supplied 997 Coopers of 1962. From what I have found so far , then the body number issued to this green car is correct.
Many of the early 997 were supplied to Longbridge as painted and trimmed shells from Fisher and Ludlow. There are numerous cars with a body number not in the normal A***** sequence, it seems to be the cars built in twos and threes not the batches of 40-50. Theses other numbers fit in more with an 850. My thoughts were maybe the slower selling Super model trimmed shell got cooper mechanicals to meet demand/homolgation ?? The issue there of course is the gear change hole. Maybe FL gave an 850 number to a cooper shell occasionally, in error?? Be interesting to see how far this happened for. I do know of a 997 ,very original with known history from new with a ‘ non cooper body number’, interestingly also a green Austin.
I apprerciate your input. I have never heard of this happening and it seems like this could be the case with this mini. The number itself would be about correct for the build date of an ordinary 850 mini. It has a build date of march 22, 1962 and the body number is A120676. I found another standard 850 mini built March 19-21 and has a number of 121486. Seeing as how the plate is stamped with the correct prefix of "A" it would seem like they knew they needed a Cooper and I wonder why they wouldnt just stamp the next Cooper body number that was in line. I would think the "A" would have been stamped prior to paint which would also be prior to delivery from FL right? but then again the body was probably already finished and awaiting paint so they simply stamp the letter "A" so it represents that its going to be a Cooper and off it goes. Suppose the cutout in the floor could be an issue if thats something stamped/cut out during the manufacturing of the floor panel. Either way I learned something new today about the production of minis and I thank you for that!
SMOKE GREY
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Re: Cooper 997 on Bring A Trailer with odd body number matching Heritage Certificate

Post by SMOKE GREY »

The 22nd March was the day they made the most USA spec 997s in a single day, 32 cars. Of them eleven had 120*** body numbers. And eleven green cars,the second most common colour, there being 13 red and black cars in that production run.
sanm72
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Re: Cooper 997 on Bring A Trailer with odd body number matching Heritage Certificate

Post by sanm72 »

Hi all,

Is the FE22949 number correct for a 1962 car? or it should have six numbers

Sandro
Austin Mini Cooper MK1 66'
Innocenti Mini Cooper MK2 69'
Innocenti Mini Cooper MK3 71'
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