The short story goes something like this:
I’ve always had a curious fascination for travelling funfairs. The smell of red diesel, onions and sweet candy apples. Sometimes a whiff of chunder. It’s the bright lights and classic scroll paint designs that really catch the eye. As a nipper I couldn’t get enough of the dodgems or waltzers. As an adult, the addiction lingers, to the point where I started getting friendly with showmen (semi-nomadic funfair owners) and searching for a vintage waltzer car. Why? A sofa.
A daft dream of turning one into a comfy easy chair is becoming reality. Slowly. It too a while to find a waltzer carriage that would be sold as a single, as most keep getting renovated and used to earn money. Most of the waltzers you see at British funfairs are probably over half a century old. They just keep going and going, earning and earning.
My waltzer is a Maxwell car. This means it is British built and with a rounded back. The little lump displaying the number on the front of the car is a trademark of the Maxwell, I’m told.
I bought this car two years ago and have been a lazy arse. Progress only really started in November. Its rotten state explains why this waltzer no longer makes teenagers dizzy on Skegness seafront. The plan is to retain its original hand painted artwork and make it solid. Pete, my chippy mate, has reinforced the floors with 1″ MDF, bolted up some wheelie bin casters and torn out the rubber vertical pew back rest.
The wooden frame is now raked and ready to accept a more chilled backrest. Upholstery comes once I’ve removed the entire french windows of the house to get this 6ft-circular hulk indoors. The wife is delighted.
Metal flake vinyl upholstery is on the cards, to keep that glitzy funfair flavour:
I might get a knock-off Tommy Hilfiger jumper and smother it in hydraulic oil to keep things ‘carny’. Thanks to Paul Harrison, Exec Director,
Communications & Public Affairs at Ford of Europe, for his classic bus/coach contacts. The side trim used on classic coaches will be used as a waistband embellishment on the waltzer. See, there was a car connection somewhere.
Trust me, that was the short version of the Waltzer saga. More coming soon. Oh, and this project was started way before celebrity Big Brother slung one in their diary room. How dare they.