Comet (1933-1934) - owner Bruce White
1934 Austin Comet - Owner Bruce White
Austin Seven Club of South Australia
Pre Restoration Photographs
This Austin Seven Sports, dubbed the "Comet 65", was built by William (Bill) Conoulty, a Sydney Austin agent. Nine Comets were built during 1933-34, three of which were exported to the UK. During this period the company employed up to 40 people at a number of locations in the eastern suburbs of Sydney. William Conoultys father-in-law Mr. Jennings, a highly skilled coppersmith, produced the prototype coachwork. Peter Resolay, a Sydney based coachbuilder manufactured the remaining bodies. Each Comet was pre-ordered for a price of ??or ?with optional extras) and took six weeks to manufacture. Nippy engines and mechanicals were used on imported rolling chassis.
This Conoulty Comet is believed to be the only surviving car and is thought to have been his personal car, used daily in Sydney. The original Nippy engine was replaced in the 1950s with the present 1935 747cc two-bearing motor, featuring a rare Cambridge alloy head. The manifold, typical of the period, uses a single 1-1/8" SU carburettor.
In 1959 Alan Banister of Sydney sold the car to Rod Wells. After driving the Seven through his early university years, Rod brought it to South Australia where, in 1994, the partly restored car (boxes of bits) was sold to its current owner Bruce White. The next two years he spent restoring the Comet to its present glory. The original 1934 Comet is shown in a photograph on the William (Bill) Conoulty page of this site. The Comet was restored prior to receiving photographs of the original, hence there are some minor differences. The main difference is in the body section below the radiator shell, this section was missing and thus the restored car features a different design. The bonnet straps are also not as per the original.
Bill Conoulty is also known for his design of:
the Conoulty Special Austin Comet - also known as "Musso"
the Cushioned Power Austin Seven head
an overhead valve conversion for the Austin Seven
an overhead cam conversion for the Austin Seven
the design of small Austin Seven power "tractors" for indoor use featuring enclosed exhaust gas collection (The Royal Prince Alfred Hospital in Sydney commissioned one of these in 1937 to pull linen trolleys around the wards)
the Globe of Death, which in its original form, featured a modified Austin Seven and a Douglas motorcycle travelling in opposite directions!
an all steel body on an Ash frame
a low chrome plated radiator design (similar to the Nippy)
two front hinged doors
slab tail section (but with a Ruby petrol tank, not a slab tank design)
all steel, long sweeping, front wings connecting to the rear guards
all steel rear guards
a one piece folding windscreen
a two bow, duck cover folding hood
sixteen inch wheels with the spare mounted on the rear slab back
custom exhaust system
Nippy steering components
Other mechanicals and electricals as per the standard Seven of the period.
The Austin Seven Motoring Pages