Spitfire & GT6 Forum

Welcome! Sign In Register
Please Sign In or Register to Search

Hood Latches

Posted by Falkon 
Falkon Avatar
Al Martin
Wisconsin, USA   usa

Was walking past the Spitfire today when I noticed an "M" on the chrome hood latch. What does this stand for?

MOTOR perhaps?



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 06/16/2011 09:08PM by Falkon.
. You can hide this ad & support this site by upgrading to a Gold Membership ~ click here for more info
hymodyne Avatar
james king
salisbury, MD, USA   usa
1972 Triumph GT6 MkIII "Baby Blue"

Micheloti, perhaps?
Andrew Mace
East Nassau, upstate NY, USA   usa
1962 Triumph Herald 1200
1967 Triumph Sports 1200 "The Munsonmobile"

This has been the subject of much discussion over the years, but no one has yet been able to "prove" anything! It's NOT: Motor, Michelotti, Marcos or, apparently, any of several other "M" words that have been suggested over the years.

One lengthy discussion of this very topic can be found on the Club Triumph Forum; there's even a post with information from the British patent. Alas, even that sheds no light on the Mysterious "M"! confused smiley
. You can hide this ad & support this site by upgrading to a Gold Membership ~ click here for more info
Falkon Avatar
Al Martin
Wisconsin, USA   usa

Maybe the guy making the original mold was named Mike or something, and just carved his name into it.
Mike G
NZ, Waitakere, New Zealand   nzl

Could be Matchbox, like the British toy car maker. Spittys are a bit like toys compared to some of your 'yank tanks'!!
. You can hide this ad & support this site by upgrading to a Gold Membership ~ click here for more info
grubscrew Avatar
grub screw
The suburbs of, Winfield, Maryland, USA   usa

I always thought it was Michelotti...I read that on the Internet long ago, so it must be true winking smiley
I've been spreading that tidbit of "insider" information at car shows for awhile.
I'll have to go read the link that Andy posted above, and decide whether I believe them!
Dave
britsnspits Avatar
Michael Stoliker
Bethlehem, PA, USA   usa
1976 Triumph Spitfire 1500 "The Phoenix"
1978 Triumph Spitfire 1500 "Lucky"

I believe I saw in the guide to originality that the "M" was Michelotti's signature on the Spitfire. If he was the type to sign his designs I'd expect to find an "M" on Herald and Staaaags also. I'm pretty sure it's a given for the Herald since they probably share the part with the Spitfire. Anybody with a Staaag seen an "M" anywhere on their car?
. You can hide this ad & support this site by upgrading to a Gold Membership ~ click here for more info
Andrew Mace
East Nassau, upstate NY, USA   usa
1962 Triumph Herald 1200
1967 Triumph Sports 1200 "The Munsonmobile"

In reply to a post by britsnspits I believe I saw in the guide to originality that the "M" was Michelotti's signature on the Spitfire. If he was the type to sign his designs I'd expect to find an "M" on Herald and Staaaags also. I'm pretty sure it's a given for the Herald since they probably share the part with the Spitfire....
It's a nice thought ("signature" on the Spitfire), but that doesn't appear to be the case here. Note that the Herald was introduced almost four years before the Spitfire and had those same latches from the start. The closest thing to a "Michelotti" signature appearing on the Herald is the crossed-flags badge found on the rear quarter panels of the convertible and coupé models, said flags being the nautical representation of the letters "S" (for Standard, the parent company) and "V" (for Vignale, the Italian body company for which Michelotti worked before setting out on his own and who continued to work with him).
britsnspits Avatar
Michael Stoliker
Bethlehem, PA, USA   usa
1976 Triumph Spitfire 1500 "The Phoenix"
1978 Triumph Spitfire 1500 "Lucky"

Andy,

Why would the latches appearing on the Herald earlier than the Spitfire disprove the M being Michelotti's Sig? He did in fact design that car too. Maybe they are simply the badge of the company that sourced the latches (there's no indication that they weren't a sourced part is there?).

For the moment I see no reason to disbelieve that they were Michelotti's Sig. If it's a myth, it's one I'm happy with.

ETA.
What's the quote..."I disregard your reality and substitute my own"?spinning smiley sticking its tongue out



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 06/17/2011 09:04AM by britsnspits.
Andrew Mace
East Nassau, upstate NY, USA   usa
1962 Triumph Herald 1200
1967 Triumph Sports 1200 "The Munsonmobile"

I've always rather liked the Michelotti connection myself, but I just don't think it's the case. Here's some of the information from the patent on the latch:

Patent number: GB854540 (A)
Publication date: 1960-11-23
Inventor(s): WHITEHOUSE SAMUEL + (WHITEHOUSE SAMUEL)
Applicant(s): BLOXVICH LOCK STAMPING + (THE BLOXWICH LOCK AND STAMPING COMPANY LIMITED)

(the rest is available if you read through the Club Triumph Forum posting link above)

There's no mention of Michelotti anywhere in the patent document. Meanwhile, I admit that I don't know what company actually manufactured the catches for Standard-Triumph.

To my knowledge, there is no particular Michelotti "signature" of any kind on the TR4, the 1300 or 2000 sedans or their later derivatives, or the Stag, etc.

Meanwhile, the latches were used on a few other 1960s British cars as well, including various versions of the Marcos and even the original Ford GT-40!
britsnspits Avatar
Michael Stoliker
Bethlehem, PA, USA   usa
1976 Triumph Spitfire 1500 "The Phoenix"
1978 Triumph Spitfire 1500 "Lucky"

It's actually an M with a superimposed V and stands for Mark V. Yes, its true, the Spitfires were early prototypes for Speed Racer's Mark Five!
Falkkon Avatar
JP Robert
Calgary, Alberta, Canada   can

Now I've got to put a monkey in my trunk. See what you've done?
britsnspits Avatar
Michael Stoliker
Bethlehem, PA, USA   usa
1976 Triumph Spitfire 1500 "The Phoenix"
1978 Triumph Spitfire 1500 "Lucky"

What? You haven't already got a trunk monkey?

http://www.trunkmonkey.com/
Falkkon Avatar
JP Robert
Calgary, Alberta, Canada   can

Aaaaaaahahahaa those videos are hilarious. I'm inspired.



Needless to say, the wife thinks I'm certifiable now.
90632D Avatar
Fox Trapper
Various, USA   usa

Huh, I managed to never even known there were questions on the M!

Here's the official logo from his studio. It certainly looks like the same M to me.



http://www.michelotti.com/

I've no dog in the fight, it just seems very much like the Michelotti M.
Andrew Mace
East Nassau, upstate NY, USA   usa
1962 Triumph Herald 1200
1967 Triumph Sports 1200 "The Munsonmobile"

True, there are similarities between the "m" in the Michelotti logo and that on the bonnet latch:



But then one might wonder why the entire Michelotti logo wasn't used? It couldn't have been that much more complicated to cast into the handle?
grubscrew Avatar
grub screw
The suburbs of, Winfield, Maryland, USA   usa

I see nothing about the patent information that rules out M for Michelotti.

What I mean is, while it's clear that Mr. Whitehouse and/or the Bloxvich/Bloxwich company patented a nifty latching mechanism, it's not necessarily a given that said patent would exclude later applying a cosmetic appearance detail (the Michelotti M)to memorialize the stylist's contribution to a specific car when the latch is used on said car.

Besides, I like the comment attributed to the Standard Triumph workers who say it was M for Michelotti....a comment summarily ignored in the referenced discussion! smiling smiley
trzavie Avatar
Al S.
Vast, Midwest, USA   usa

Yes it was Michelotti, and here is the proof!

In the pic below is Michelotti and two assistants in a pre-production
super secret prototype Spitfire.

Attachments:
Michelotti.jpg (19.5 KB) –
Michelotti.jpg

Falkkon Avatar
JP Robert
Calgary, Alberta, Canada   can

LOL you guys are tormenting me with ancient horrible TV. I agree that the M looks the same on both his personal logo and the hood latch. Bear in mind the lines wouldn't be identical as the latches are cast and not vinyl. I would say that it's a reasonable assumption that it was originally a signature.
britsnspits Avatar
Michael Stoliker
Bethlehem, PA, USA   usa
1976 Triumph Spitfire 1500 "The Phoenix"
1978 Triumph Spitfire 1500 "Lucky"

I gotta get a shot of me in front of the Spitfire doing the Speed Racer pose. That would be a hoot! Geriatric Speed Racer.

Where's my old motorcycle helmet?
. You can hide this ad & support this site by upgrading to a Gold Membership ~ click here for more info

Reply to this topic or post your own questions!

Members Sign In if you've already registered, or

Register a New Account

Registration is free and takes less than a minute

Having trouble posting or changing forum settings?
Check the Forum Help File (FAQ) or contact the webmaster.


Join The Club

Sign in to ask questions, share photos, and access all website features

TRExp Menu

What's New

Membership

Forums ->

The Pub

Buy, Sell & Trade

Vendor Market

Spitfire & GT6

TR6 & TR250

TR7 & TR8

TR4 & TR5

TR2 & TR3

Herald & Vitesse

Stag, 2500 & 2000

Triumph Pre-War

Odds & Ends

List Archives

Motorsports

Meetup

Forum Search

Random Topic

Latest Posts

Live Chat

Calendar

Journals

Tech Library

Car Registry

Cars For Sale

Model Info

Directory

Member Map

TRExp Store

Search Site

Advertising Info

Smartphone quick link
trexp.mobi

Adjust Text Size

Larger Smaller
Reset Save