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1933 Yellow Coach Nite Coach

1933 Yellow Coach Nite Coach in Sullivan's Travels, Movie, 1941 IMDB

Class: Bus, Double-deck — Model origin: US

1933 Yellow Coach Nite Coach

[*][*][*] Vehicle used by a character or in a car chase

Comments about this vehicle


Sunbar UK

2007-08-14 17:22

[Image: cap013as7.5950.jpg] [Image: cap045xzo1.7715.jpg]
edit: For completeness of description, another view added showing the side window and door arrangement.

Used as a motorhome but probably a disguised bus.

-- Last edit: 2007-08-15 16:29:53

Alexander DE

2007-08-14 17:52

It is a so called 'Nite Coach' as operated by Pickwick and Santa Fe Trailways:
[Image: pickwick193322d12e2bsu8.5285.jpg] [Image: 22122cf1156lb4.29.jpg]

The manufacturer might be Yellow Coach, but I have no firm information on that so far.

stronghold EN

2007-08-14 21:10

looks good.! ;) ..very imposing front grill

Ddey65 US

2007-08-15 01:20

stronghold wrote looks good.! ;) ..very imposing front grill

Almost looks post-war. I'm looking at my copy of "Highway Buses of the 20th Century," by William A. Luke & Linda L. Melter, and I don't see any bus that looks like that in there. I see some Pickwick Nite-Coaches in there, but none with a post-war-style grille like that.

nzcarnerd NZ

2007-08-15 07:25

Maybe the grille is a later addition - added to spruce up its appearance at the time it was converted to a motorhome.

Sunbar UK

2007-08-15 11:57

Its my guess from seeing the film that the grill was added for the movie and the bus was never actually converted into a motorhome. The interior shots were almost certainly shot in a studio on a rig that could be swung and pivoted to simulate the rocking motion of the vehicle.

Alexander DE

2007-08-15 12:16

Ddey65 wrote
Almost looks post-war. ...

The film is from 1941, still pre-war for the US (at least officially).

Ddey65 wrote ... I see some Pickwick Nite-Coaches in there ...

Is the make being mentioned?

Sunbar UK

2007-08-15 12:28

"In 1934 Yellow Coach hired a talented designer and engineer named Dwight Austin, who had been vice-presi≠dent for design of the old Pickwick manufacturing opera≠tion and who had later acquired the former Pickwick fac≠tory to build Nite Coaches and small Utility Coaches on his own. Austin's principal contribution to Yellow was an invention patented by him, whereby a bus engine could be placed transversely across the back of the vehicle."

from Coachbuilt.com - Yellow Coach. http://www.coachbuilt.com/bui/y/yellow_coach/yellow_coach.htm

It would appear from this that Dwight Austin built the Nite Coaches. However I guess these would have been based on Pickwick vehicles.

-- Last edit: 2007-08-15 12:29:00

Alexander DE

2007-08-15 15:43

In the following document I found this paragraph refering to the Nite Coaches:

"Greyhoundís first major contribution to
revolutionizing bus construction came in
the mid-1930s as a cooperative effort with
Yellow Coach/General Motors. In about
1928, Dwight E. Austin developed the
Pickwick Nite Coach in conjunction with
Pickwick Stages. While the double decker
sleeper bus was never successful from the
standpoint of orders and production, it did
pioneer integral design, a rear engine and
an angle drive power train. Historical
research suggests that Yellow Coach was trying
to perfect the angle drive at this point
but Austinís patented angle drive was more

from: http://www.busmag.com/PDF/Greyh1.pdf

Therefore I would suggest to use 'Yellow Coach' as make. GM was probably responsible for the engine and drivetrain, Pickwick for the principle design.

From images I know that the early Nite Coaches had a different frontal design. The picture I posted above was dated to 1933.

Sunbar, would you agree to name it 'Yellow Coach Nite Coach (1933)'?

Sunbar UK

2007-08-15 16:14

No problem with the naming particularly with the references you were able to quote. :)

I'm sure anyone with an interest in this unusual bus will read all the comments also. Possibly in the future, someone with more information will add their comments.

napabill US

2012-11-03 18:39

I believe this bus was built not by Yellow, but by Columbia Coach Works, a spinoff from Pickwick. The grille was probably added for the movie. This may have been an ex-Santa Fe bus. Either way the louvered engine compartment doors were also a departure from the original, which had dual spare tires mounted at the rear. It's also missing a couple of windows on the rear sides. A pair of similar buses were built by Crown Coach for All American Bus Lines in 1936, but they used underfloor Hall-Scott engines instead of the twin Ford V-8's mounted in the rear of this unit.


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