The Aston Martin Owners Club
Originally Assembled By Brian McMillan , Pat Davis, Alan Puckett and others.
ASTON MARTIN MARK TWO
TWO - FOUR SEATER SPORTS
By Peter Wherrett
Sports car world August 1959
The typical New Yorker, according to Alan Puckett, considers a motor car a device for conveyance from A to B. To him a car has no personality, no individuality. If it goes wrong he takes it to his nearest gas station and has it fixed. He never lifts the bonnet, rarely changes a wheel.
That was the attitude of Alan himself when he arrived in Sydney from the United States in 1953. A commercial artist by profession, he had a mild interest in motor cars. But only as transport for his family.
Merely by chance he looked at a 1934 Singer Le Mans and , thinking it was a pretty car, he bought it. It was in fact on its last legs mechanically, and rectangular money was obviously necessary to make it go at all. However, Alan was enthusiastic, so he spent the money - then sold the car at a considerable loss. His first experience with old cars came the hard way.
His interest in machinery of this kind was aroused and he was determined that his next adventure with a classic car would be more successful.
After the sale of the Singer Alan bought a 1954 M.G. TF From Laurie Oxenforth. He used it strictly as a road car until 1955, when his desire top own a real thoroughbred got the better of him and he bought a 1934 3.5 litre Bentley from Sydney's George Sevenoaks. The car, though in good order was not quite good enough for Allen. He set about restoring it to better than new condition. That Bentley became one of the magnificent cars of the country.
Alan Joined the Vintage Sports car Club, won its Concours d' Elegance two years in a row. Late in 1956 he sold the Bentley to a Tasmanian Enthusiast. Soon after he acquired another classic, this time a 1928 Rolls Royce.
Shortly after buying the Rolls Pucket noticed an advertisement offering a "pre war Aston Martin sports car" With a view to adding to his collection he paid a visit the owner, a Mr. Bob Baker.
On May 12, 1957 Alan Puckett became the owner of what was to become one of the most beautiful thoroughbred sports cars in Australia, possibly the world
Back in 1934 that esteemed British motoring journal "The Autocar", published a road test of a truly fabulous sports car.
Nothing unusual , you say. True, but what was written about this car could be classed as unusual because it was (and is) a rare occurrence for a an English journalist to find an English product which was so particularly praiseworthy..
Tester H.S.Lidfield said of the Aston Martin " . . . A car which so obviously is practical that anyone not knowing it in action must be impressed; but it is the beautiful feel of the machine which makes it one of the foremost cars of its type today". And later ". . . It is more than just a car and has the power to fascinate any driver who can regard motoring as something far above mere conveyance from one place to another"
The Mark Two Aston Martin manufactured in 1934 But the Aston Martin Company, then in the capable hands of A.C. "Bert" Bertelli, was reputedly the best of all the pre war Astons - one of the best cars ever produced in England.
Powered by a 1500 cc single overhead camshaft engine of excellent design, the cars maximum speed was quoted at 84.91 m.p.h. And the four wheel mechanical brakes were effective enough to stop it in 26 feet. From 30 m.p.h. Considering the weight of the weight, which topped 22 cwt., this was a wonderful performance for a car of such modest capacity.
In 1947 a Flight Lt. Duff bought this particular Mk II and took it to the well known Aston specialist Friary Motors for a complete engine rebuild. Not long afterwards Lt. Duff and his car returned to Australia.
The Aston passed through a number of hands before Pucket bought it. At the time of Allan's acquisition the car was not running at all well and it was obvious that a great deal of restoration would be necessary to bring it up to the fantastic standard of perfection required by this genial American of all his motor cars.
Not in the least deterred by the condition of the car he began its complete restoration, replacing as he went any parts which were in the slightest way damaged or worn. Those parts which were unavailable in this country (and there were many) were made up. New wheel races and oil seals were fitted, the brakes were relined and new rear axle carriers were built up far stronger than the old ones. The steering was adjusted and all springs were checked and U bolts and shackles replaced. As each item was attended to it was cleaned and polished before assembly.