Trains, Rock & Roll and Cars too...


Neil Young recently auctioned his model trains and classic cars for big bucks...
Neil Young, $11,250 Prototype Lionel 1952 Western Pacific 6464-100 Boxcar. Photo: Julien's Auction, Inc

Legendary singer-songwriter Neil Young rocked the auction block, selling some of the most cherished pieces of his model train set. More than 230 pieces of Young’s collection of Lionel model trains sold for nearly $300,000, Julien’s Auctions said. A Prototype Lionel 1954 Western Pacific 6464-100 Boxcar and Prototype AEC Switcher from the Lionel Archives both sold for $11,250, above the original estimate range of $2,000-$10,000. 
Custom painted $10,000 H.O.R.D.E Tour Commodore Vanderbilt Hudson Locomotive, Photo: Julien's Auctions Inc

A custom-painted H.O.R.D.E. Tour Commodore Vanderbilt Hudson locomotive sold for $10,000.

The Canadian rock star, who co-founded Buffalo Springfield and later joined Crosby, Stills & Nash, is more than just a fan of the model trains. Young developed a remote control device and sound system for Lionel, in order to make it easier for his son, who has cerebral palsy, to run the trains. “It’s just relaxing,” Young told David Letterman during an appearance on the former late-night host’s show in 2012.

But it wasn’t just the twice-inducted member of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame’s model train hobby that made big news at the auction. 

Some of Young’s classic cars rolled off the auction block after selling for big bucks, including his 50th anniversary special edition 1953 Buick Roadmaster Skylark convertible which features a steering wheel hub saying “customized for Neil Young;” the car sold for $400,000. 

Young's rare Special Edition Code 76X Skylark Convertible (total of 1690 produced) exhibited a luxurious two-tone red & white leather interior and a Selectronic-brand radio. This was the first car off the production line (VIN 32397) for this model. It is powered by a 322cid engine with 188hp and is equipped with a Twin Turbine Dynaflow automatic transmission with a 4-barrel Carter carburetor, power brakes, power steering, hydraulically controller antenna. windows, front seat and convertible top.

This Skylark includes chrome accents, 40-spoke Kelsey Hayes wire wheels and features a steering wheel hub that states "This vehicle was customized for Neil Young".  

The car was expected to sell for $250-$300,000 - as stated above, it sold for $400,000.  

MORT II, a 1948 Buick Roadmaster Hearse, Photo: Julien's Auctions, Inc

A 1948 Buick Roadmaster Hearse built by Flxible sold for $31,250.  It was expected to sell between $8,000 - $10,000.

Mort II was a nickname given by Neil Young.  This hearse is similar to one that was used by him and his band, The Squires, to haul their equipment from event to event in the early 1960's.  This vehicle is the subject of Young's song, "Long May You Run" form the album of the same name, and was mentioned in Young's autobiography, "Waging Heavy Peace".

Mort II has a 320cid inline L-Head, 8-cylinder engine with a 144hp, 2 speed Dynaflow automatic transmission, and a 2-barrel carb. Being a service vehicle, production was limited to only 435 units.

The rear-loading funeral coach features five windows for viewing, rear fender skirts, gold and blue velvet curtains and two suicide doors in the rear deck.  This car also has a few personal touches, such as a bumper sticker that reads "S___ Happens", and a permanently affixed plaque that reads "William Randolph, in memory of Taylor Phelps" - a reference to a friend of Young's who passed away in 1995.

Also sold during the Julien's Auction by Young was a 1941 Chrysler Series 28 Windsor Highlander two-door, three-person coupe belonging to Young, who says it was once owned by actor Steve McQueen, sold for $35,200 

Young, who wrote and sang the No. 1 single “Heart of Gold,” also sold multiple guitars and a large quantity of recording equipment at the auction. A portion of the proceeds from the auction will benefit The Bridge School, which Young and his then-wife Pegi founded in 1986, to help children with severe physical and speech impairments.

Originally published by Matthew Kazin, December 10, 2017 Media & Advertising FOX Business

Still wonder what model trains have for us?  See our 2013 Blog article here.

Congrats to Neil Young on his successful auction and charitable contribution.... we're now going to spin up his "Long May You Run" album on our stereo and enjoy...

The Garagistry Team