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Dave Hornish
Reply with quote  #1 
All I can say is I'm glad I don't collect all the variations in this set! I am complete at 180.
Reply with quote  #2 
Don't sweat it Bill, you have probably forgotten more about trading cards than most of us will ever know. Now I got to go check my WOW to see if I can find anymore variations.
Larry Tipton
Reply with quote  #3 
Well I never knew of either variation I love these kind of threads, because I go right for the box that contain my cards, and see what version I have. Looks like I have the error version of card #7 as the front says GERMAN MOTORCYCLE. My card #92 has Horsepower 125 Wheelbase 118". And my wantlist just increased by two cards.

Reply with quote  #4 
The 125 HP, 118" WB is correct.

Add me to the list of those who needs one or the other to keep my set complete.
Jack J.
Reply with quote  #5 
Bill - I've never pursued this set, so put me on the list of folks who didn't know about the variations. That means that your thread forces me to need 192 cards instead of 191.

I've had instances where I've exposed my lack of knowledge to this board. Almost every time, the response has been enthusiastic and supportive. On occasion, it's polite. But when you can hear crickets for a week while you wait for someone to tell you if you're an idiot or not ... that's the worst. I figure if you don't ask the question, then you'll never know. I don't think anyone is keeping score ... are they? - Jack J.
Pete D'Luhosch
Reply with quote  #6 
Bill, good going! You know I love this kind of thing.
Todd Riley
Reply with quote  #7 
Thanks Bill!

Now we all know.
Bill Bengen
Reply with quote  #8 
Hi all,

It's a little embarrassing, after collecting a series for 15 years and assuming that one knows everything there is to know about it, to discover that there is a glaring gap in one's knowledge. This was driven home to me recently concerning the 1954-1955 World on Wheels series, one of my personal favorites.

Everyone knows that in addition to the basis 160-card set, there were 30 "high number" cards, numbered 161-180, some issued with blue highlights on the backs. And most people know that card #7 has two varieties distinguished by verbiage on the front of the card: "German Motorcycle" (error version) and "English Motorcycle" (corrected version).

Based on this, I assumed for years that a full set of WOW cards, including all varieties, would comprise 191 cards.

Not true.

Over the last few days, it was drawn to my attention by Bob Marcy of Scottsdale cards that there is another variety of card #92, which features a discrepancy on the back of the card. On one variety, the Horsepower is listed as "125", and the Wheelbase at "118". On the second variety, those numbers are reversed.

That means that there are now 192 cards, not 191, required for a full set of WOW.

I'm still in shock. I have not seen this variety discussed in any source on non-sports cards. I checked back issues of the Wrapper, the hobby bibles, auctions records, etc. Nothing. Nada. Nichevo.

Now, I am sure that as soon as this message is posted, I will get messages from dozens of board members saying that they knew this little tidbit all along, and that in addition there are five other cards with errors, so that I have to expand my collecting efforts to 197 cards. Pretty soon, WOW will be pushing Freedom's War for length honors.

If this is true, please be gentle. I am in a fragile state. With my collecting confidence shattered, I am beginning to ask "What else don't I know?" Was "Red Menace" issued with three different colored backs, including chartreuse, not just tan and grey? Was "Rails and Sails" really 400 cards long? And did "Goofy Postcards" really contain chase cards?

Now that I am aware of this variety, I have some questions, which I hope you can answer:

1. Which is the original version, and which is the corrected version?
2. What are the relative rarities of the two varieties of #92?
3. Are you aware of any more such varieties in WOW?

This is all very unsettling. Perhaps I should have engaged in a simpler hobby, such as collecting square marbles.

Best in collecting,

Bill Bengen

Bill Bengen
Reply with quote  #9 
In reply to Marty's comments, I have written to Bob Marcy to learn how he became aware of this variety. The only give-away is that when the numbers were switched, the "inches" symbol for the wheelbase went along with the number to the "horsepower" line, which made it look out of place- horsepower is not usually measured in inches. However, that is still quite a catch by somebody.

I suspect that a lot of these varieties were discovered by individuals with multiple copies of a card comparing them closely for the best card to include in their prime set. Just a theory.

Best in collecting, Bill Bengen
Jon Hardgrove
Reply with quote  #10 
Bill - when I found the #7 I had just bought my first batch of a hundred or so Wheels at an automobile swap meet in the late 1960's. A friend and I were looking at the cards when there were no customers (I had set up at the meet); and noticed the card. Being a gearhead, I knew that Norton was not a German make. Told my friend I bet there were a lot of unhappy Britishers when that card came out. Didn't find the corrected card until later.

Bill Bengen
Reply with quote  #11 
Bob Marcy wrote me back: "Bill, 1 of my customers asked me if I had the #92 variation, and he told me about it. I didn’t know of it before."

So, it may forever remain a mystery who discovered this variation.

Best in collecting,

Bill Bengen
Jon Hardgrove
Reply with quote  #12 
Bill - thank you for sharing. I too was unaware of this.

As mentioned before in the thread, 125 HP and 118 inch wheelbase are correct.

I THOUGHT I had five sets, now I find I have just two sets

I have 5 of the card number 92, or which three are the correct version, and two are the incorrect.

I would GUESS that the error card was the first print, and was then corrected.

And as I was aware of the #7 Norton error in the 1960's, I started acquiring #7 cards, only to find no significant difference in the number of errors and number of corrections, and have since disposed of most of the extra #7. While I have only 5 of the card 92, the distribution is 3 and 2, so again guessing there may be no significant difference (although once some of the ebay sellers find out about the error, one will probably see huge price increases ).

Bill Bengen
Reply with quote  #13 
Thanks, guys, for all the helpful comments on this apparently new WOW variety. Quite frankly, if Bob Marcy hadn't pointed it out to me, it is so subtle I don't think I would have noticed it in a million years. I stumbled on the two Jets variations by myself, as well as the three Rosan JFK flipped images, but they were child's play compared to this one.

Best in collecting,

Bill Bengen
Jon Hardgrove
Reply with quote  #14 
I think it would be interesting for those that collect this series to post the number of each variation; so that we could keep a total and determine if either seems to be scarcer than the other. My guess is they will not be.

marty quinn
Reply with quote  #15 
very cool find bill,,,,,,but i have to say!!! to find a variation like this takes on some "rainman" (Dustin Hoffman) type qualities.I say that with huge respect, something like that is """hard""" to find. i mean who is really reading the wheel base and then noticing the change??? WOW....since you retired bill i think you may have to much time on your you start studying the paper fibers on the borders please let me know....this way i can start getting an intervention

Really very nice find bill, i just sold 700 wow cards last month ..,, i would have had fun going blind reading then comparing the backs for you....
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