• Jan 19, 2007
High-res image available by clicking above

Lot Number 1042.1: Von Dutch GMC Bus-Home/Workshop

Here's one of those "don't pass it just because it looks like it's been out in a field for 20 years" gems that we love so much. This bus was once the home and workshop of the legendary pinstriper/customizer Von Dutch. The bus started out as a Long Beach, California city transit bus. Von Dutch ended up with it in the early '60s as payment from a woman he had done some work for. According to the account by his friend and colleague, Bob Burns, Dutch "set up living quarters at the rear, the remainder of the vehicle was a machine shop, including a bluing tank and an old metal lathe covered with Dutch's pinstriping. The floor was covered with cigarette butts, beer cans, and metal shavings."

And that's basically how it still looks. It sat in a field in Santa Barbara for a number of years and has seen its fair share of vandalism (and target practice), but it still has a lot of Dutch's fingerprints all over it. All part of this year's Rock the Block theme at B-J, there are a number of other Von Dutch items displayed with the bus, including his customized hi-fi stereo system that will also be auctioned on Friday.

[Source: Barrett-Jackson]


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    • 1 Second Ago
  • 11 Comments
      • 8 Years Ago
      According to this, his paint box sold for $270,000 in an RM auction last May:

      http://jalopyjunktown.com/2006/05/artifact-von-dutch-personal.html

      I'm really surprised about the bus...
      • 8 Years Ago
      Dan, thank you for the edification! I didn't know, but smelled a fashionista rat in the sudden explosion of the brand. I sure hope that his survivors have made something off the exploitation of his name.

      I ordered the book!

      Cheers,

      Richard
      • 8 Years Ago
      He was, according to reports ...just a miserable Racist,Drunken Bastard.Whose Claim to fame was holding a paint brush steady
      • 8 Years Ago
      damn. this thing sold for only $40,000
      • 8 Years Ago
      I saw a similar crappy rustbucket VW bus that Von Dutch allegedly lived in on ebay a long time ago. I have a feeling that somebodys just finding old junk cars to sell and making a killing on them
      • 8 Years Ago
      • 8 Years Ago
      Richard, I really hope you're being facetious. Kenneth Howard was indeed alive and real, and died well before his name was misappropriated for fashion. Check out Pat Ganahl's book on Von Dutch.
      • 8 Years Ago
      Has anyone ever seen a picture of "Von Dutch"?

      Did he really exist? Or is he an American Legend in pinstriping the way Kwanza is a traditional African holiday?
      • 8 Years Ago
      the lendgandary pinsiper worked out of this, any more cool finds a Barret-Jackson
      • 8 Years Ago
      For those who didn't watch this bus went for $40,000. I guess Barrett Jackson thought it would get alot more bids because the auctioneer was trying to sell it like his life depended on it. At one point he even said something like "this should go for at least a couple hundred thousand". Craig Jackson looked extremely bummed out afterwards, I assume he thought it would be a huge seller. Even the commentators were surprised, saying something about a Von Dutch tool box (I believe) that went for $50K somewhere else. Bob Varsha said the Von Dutch pinstriped refrigerator in the bus was likely worth $40K alone.

      They all seemed really bummed to let it go for so little.