Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Mini Mark Welcome





Welcome to the Bremen Mini Mark blog sight. The Mini Mark was a factory built conversion, not a kit car, built in Bremen Indiana by the Bremen Motor Sport company. It was primarily built on a Volkswagen Beetle chassis making it reliable, easy to service and find replacement parts. Sales literature also shows it available on a Ford Pinto chassis. Bremen Sport is estimated to have started around 1965 and went through three different owners before it was destroyed by fire around 1982. Creighton was the name of the founder of the company and "Creighton" was also one of the car models built by Bremen.  The company built five different models of cars, the Citation, Sebring Creighton, Maxi Taxi and Mini Mark during it's existence. I have heard estimates of between 50 to 100 vehicles being produced before the fire and car production being stopped.

Here are pictures of the original assembly line and the present Bremen Composites plant in Bremen. I talked to Lester M who is the man wearing the white shirt in the picture above. He indicated that originally production was one person built the entire car. As time progressed they were able to set up an assembly line in the plant which was estimated to be around 400 feet long. The picture above shows the end of the assembly line. Les indicated chassis and engines were purchased directly from VW, shortened and modified to allow assembly of the Mini Mark.

While talking with Les he mentioned that Wayne Newton ordered a Mini Mark, and that Bremen did a special conversion putting a Porsche boxer engine in it instead of the normal VW.  Does anyone out there have a Mini Mark with a Porsche engine? That was an interesting piece of history on this magnificent little car.  

We found a 1969 Mini Mark two years ago (August 2010), and it has been going through a ground up restoration since. I am amazed at the quality and craftsmanship that went into building the car. The fiberglass is thicker than most "kit" cars (1/4"-5/16"), it is even thicker than a Corvette. The car is also a real head turner when driving it down the street.

The intent of this blog site is for owners and enthusiasts to share information on their Mini Mark's and hopefully find owners willing to develop a Bremen Mini Mark Owners Club, keeping the great car alive.

Lets see if we can find out how many of these unique cars are still on the road. I know there are a few that have made their way out of the United States. A handful have made it on eBay and a few even across Barrett Jackson's stage for auction.
I have documented 80 cars so far that are still in existence so the estimated count could be closer to 100 to those actually produced.

Thanks for visiting the blog, I am anxiously looking forward to your posts and comments. If you are interested in contacting me directly you can reach me at tatimm12@gmail.com. I would also be interested in seeing pictures of your Mini Mark feel free to mail them to me.

58 comments:

  1. Very excited to see your new blog!! I bought a Mini Mark this fall and am excited to connect with folks connected to the Mini Mark.

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    1. I have a mini mark but need back bumper. anyone can help?

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  2. I have 1969 Bremen Mini Mark also. My dad lives in Indiana, he gave it to us about 5 years ago. It is in excellent condition, Garage kept. I live in Virginia. I am also interested to find out how many are still on the road. I was also excited to see this blog!

    Lisa

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  3. Lisa, thanks for the feedback,, hopefully will post the numbers and maybe some pics of the ones I find, I am almost at 50 right now
    Tim

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  4. Hi, I too have a 1981 bremen mini mark. It has both soft and hard top. Factory air conditioning . Chrome side horns, both side tires. Factory stock pioneer cassett player that still works. I had the seats redone, New grant steering wheel. The car was sitting in a barn since 1985. The motor was junk, but i had one to put in. Now the car is very nice looking and my total investment so far is around $1400 bucks.I would post pics if i knew where.

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    1. Thanks for the note Don, if you email me a few pics I will eventually post them on here when I get done with the rebuild story. tatimm12@gmail.com. What part of the country do you live in? Do you know any more owners? Interested in an Owners Club?

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  5. Great Blog! I've been meaning to start one for some time now, but time has been the issue. Thank you for documenting the history of this car. I too have a Mini Mark, one of the original models. My love of this car goes way back to my childhood. My dad was one of the only mass builders of these outside of the Bremen factory. He started with a Maxi Taxi and then built at least 10 Mini Marks in our garage. We even had the trailers for a couple of them. Not only did my dad drive his daily to work for years, but he also took great pride in showing it and winning the annual Auto Rama in Dallas several years in a row. Sadly I do not have his car, but after his passing a few years ago, I located one the same blue color and have been doing a complete restore on it since then. I have copies of the brochures and price lists along with a few photos of the cars he built. I even have the brochures for the Maxi Taxi, Sebring, Creighton and elusive Royale (the 4 seat Mini Mark that I would love to find). Thanks again for sharing the blog! Your rebuild looks great - keep the updates coming!

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    1. Is there anyway I could get a copy of the information you have on the mini mark. I just picked mine up and don't know a lot about it. I found it in a old building after the owner passed away. His family says he got it in 1992 and only drove it about 10 times. It has about 1400 miles on it and looks like it just rolled of the Assembly-line. I don't know what it worth but I give $4000 for it. My email is drshock@charter.net if you could send me the information that would be great. Thanks

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  6. Papa, thanks the the feedback. Do you by chance have a build manual from your dad? I would love to see pictures of yours if you could email them to me at address in blog. I have documented 55 through photos so far. What part of the country do you live in? Any interest in an owners club?

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  7. Tex, good luck with passing your Mini on to someone else. What state are you from? Could you get me a picture of your car at the e-mail address above? Would like to see if it is a new one?

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  8. Just bought one and will be driving it from Miami to western NC this weekend. Current owner does not have any owners manual, or technical documentation other than it’s on a 1982 VW chassis. Anybody have, or know where to get owners manual? I think an owners club or some type of on-line group would be great. This forum looks real good for the long term.ID# for mine is 118517834. Since I'll be driving it 800 miles, is there anything I need to be aware of besides the tires?

    Dan

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    1. Dan, congrats on your buy. There are a few things I would have checked before that trip. First are the brakes, make sure they are adjusted and cylinders not leaking. Easy way is look for fluid leakage on each wheel. See if the pedal fades with pressure on it. Once brakes are good, check for oil leaks from valve covers onto exhaust, good way to start a fire while driving or after. Last, check steering for loose parts, ball joints, steering linkage, steering shock absorber. As far as an owners manual, for the Mini there wasn't one that I know of. You can stop at an Auto Zone and get a VW manual which should cover the whole bottom side. There was a 22 page assembly manual, but that just showed you how to build. When you get it home if you could send me a few pics I have been documenting what is out there, currently at 59 cars. I have had a few interested in the Owners Club, around 4-5 owners so far. Close to 900 hits on the blog since it went up. If I can help or answer any questions let me know, or post and see if someone else knows the answer. Thanks for the kind comments.

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    2. Thanks for your prompt reply and suggestions. The current owner stated that he purchased the car from an individual in Ohio and had it shipped to Miami. He had intended to register it as an antique vehicle after it turned 30 yrs old. The current title is from Ohio and will probably have some additional information on it that will identify the former owner. I’ll send some pictures after I get it home.

      Thanks;

      Dan

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  9. Dan, here is a link to the VW Manual at Auto Zone http://www.autozone.com/autozone/parts/Haynes-Manual-Vehicle-Maintenance/1969-Volkswagen-Beetle/_/N-ir48tZ8gec7?itemIdentifier=579607_0_0_ most stores carry it.
    It should cover most everything you need including wiring. It sounds like yours has quite a history which hopefully you will share. You should have your 30 years now to register as antique!
    Looking forward to your pictures and info. Good luck and enjoy the drive home

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  10. Well, I hope I didn't get a pig in a poke. Although the pictures and description looked good on my EBAY purchase, there were some issues when I went to pick up the car. Although I expected to have some cosmetic issues, the pictures didn't reveal that many of the chrome fixtures were painted silver. The pictures were artfully done to avoid displaying problems with the interior upholstery. The major problems were discovered as I drove away. The tires were probably the originals. Although there was ample tread left, the tires were deteriorating and clearly unsafe. As I drove north from Miami along Rt. 1, the brakes began to pull severely and I had to baby the car to Delray Beach, where my brother lives and has a reputable mechanic who could affect repairs.
    I requested the mechanic to fix the brakes, shocks, ball joints, inspect the suspension system, tune up the engine, change all the fluids, and provide me with a vehicle that I can safely drive 800 miles. Since they don't do tires, I've arranged for 4 Uniroyal whitewalls to be installed.
    I expect to be heading back on Feb 26th and using secondary roads. My wife will be following me so we expect to have an adventure. More to come after I get home.
    Dan

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    1. Dan, I have not been reading the blog lately and stumbled upon your post... Wondering how the car made it?

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    2. Scott;

      I made it back without any problems. Since then, I have been reconditioning the paint job and my wife has redone the seats and door panels. There has been lots of grinding on the wheels and spoke assembly. Needless to say, there was a lot of work to be done when I got it home.

      Dan

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    3. Dan, good to hear from you, it sounds like our summers were spent on similar projects. We just finished up the upholstery. You can check my last post for an update. Hopefully you are enjoying the results and having fun with the car.
      Tim

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  11. Dan, I was hoping for a better post after you had driven your car home. I am not sure what you paid for it, but hopefully you have some good bones and some change in the ash tray after the work you are having done. If nothing is missing, body wise the rest can be overcome. Chrome isn't cheap, but if parts are solid they can be re-chromed. Quality did an awesome job on mine. The previous owner should have been a little more up front in his listing, especially since you were driving it off. You will have new tires. The brakes are probably a leaking cylinder or broken/frozen adjusters. Would suggest a complete brake inspection when you get home if the mechanic isn't doing it. Valve cover gaskets and push rod tube seals to avoid oil leaks and my guess is you will be able to drive it home. Hopefully you aren't too disappointed and will enjoy hours of fun driving in the near future.

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  12. Hi my name is Joseph my Friend has a Mini mark and he needs to buy a part for it i think the window frame.
    any ideas ??

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  13. I don't know of anyone specifically who stocks the windshield frame. It actually was a modified dune buggy windshield. The gaskets are still available, and the glass itself is flat safety glass, still available at most glass shops. I was able to find thins link http://bugshieldsbydino.com/ who makes custom dune buggy frames. you might give them a try. I am not sure if you have the size (a current frame you are working from) or nothing there. I can get you measurements if you like.

    I have not dealt with Bug Shields so I cannot verify what they can or can't do, but give them a try. If you Google "dune buggy windshields" you will get some options too.

    Can you tell me anything about your friends car? State he lives in, color, etc? I am trying to gather info on them.

    Thanks for visiting the sight. If I can be of any help or if anyone who reads posts, let us know.

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  14. Hi everyone my name is Bob. I have a yellow Mini Mark that has had a lot of restoration done. The car has been in Indiana since being built. Car has 7500 miles on it !
    It has a hard top with all the side curtains . Engine has a big bore kit, with electronic ignition and dual carbs and new heater boxes for cool days. Good information in your blog !

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    1. Hi Bob, thanks for the post! Sounds like a nice car. A lot of the advertising that Bremen did was with yellow Mini Marks. Where in Indiana do you live? I live up around LaPorte.

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  15. I purchased a 1967 mini mark a year ago. It had some miner cosmetic flaws, but is indeed a head turner. I plan to do restoration we time allows. Runs great , but would like to know actual value.

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  16. Hi Pam, thanks for visiting the blog. Can you tell me a little more about your Mini Mark? Color and where it is from? I have seen prices range from under $2,000.00 to $20,000.00. As you may know from the blog I am in the final stages of my ground up restoration, almost 3 years. I fell in love with the original look, but have tweaked it a little and made it even more of a head turner I think. I would love to see pictures of yours, I have documented 60+ so far, and think there are still more out there.

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    1. Pam,
      I have a chance to purchase a Mini Mark but not sure if price is to high. It is a 1997 and in very good condition. Can you help me on this. He wants $5,000,00. That seems a little high but can not find on the internet for sale.
      Thank you for your help.
      Dorothy

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  17. saludos me gusto esta pagina ya que tenemos un coche mini marcos 1982hace 15 years aca en P.R.fue importado de E.U.esta todo original solo que el reloj de marcar la hora no funciona pero todo lo demas si, lo llevamos a ferias de autos y a exhibicones de auto show estuvo en el centro comercial mas grande aca en P.R. PLAZA LAS AMERICAS fue verdaderamente un enfoque de atraccion para el publico que visita este centro me gustaria saber cuantos de ellos hay si alguien sabe..tambien me interesa saber si los bompers son hechos para este auto y donde puedo consegurlos y el reloj ya que compro piezas cuando viajo a pensylvania o carslie y hasta ahora no lo he visto por alla gracias por esta pagina y pueden ver mi carrito en FACEBOOK..Gorgiecarros antiguos o me escriben a skeleto62@hotmail.com

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  18. To those reading the blog this is a post from Gorgie who lives in Puerto Rico. He has a 1982 Mini Which he has had for around 15 years. He says it is very popular at car shows, and was displayed in a local mall. His car is a very light shade of yellow and he sent me around a dozen pictures. He has been looking for parts and not had any luck even at Hershey PA. This adds another to my list of documented cars which is now up to 65!

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  19. I just bought a Mini Mark with the Pinto chassis. It has the hard top and matching trailer. I have been attempting to obtain information--which is how I found this blog.

    The transmission is a 4 speed. The clutch is slipping and needs to be replaced. The rear cross member is welded in the chassis. After laying under the car I am not sure how to get the transmission out to replace the clutch. Anybody have any experience with clutch replacement?

    Gary

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  20. Gary, what an amazing post. I knew they had offered the Pinto option but yours is the first I have ever heard was made! I am afraid I don't know a thing on how the Pinto was assembled, but hopefully someone who reads this will post a reply. It may be as difficult as pulling the engine to get at it. I would appreciate pictures of it if you have any, and any other info you have on it. tatimm12@gmail.com
    Thanks,
    Tim

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  21. You can call or text me at the number provided 81zero-44one-532one. Thanks all and good luck

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    1. I dont know if the pics are coming thru but we will try it again. On the Title its stated year 1977 make Mini Mark as the manufacturer. I totally did not even think that this car was not a kit car I knew it was unique as far as the way the doors were mounted the thickness of the fiberglass and the quality of the vehicle itself. I would really love to know how they got their VW chassis. I have delivered motorhome chassis that were called strips in the past to different RV manufacturers. And a few of them acctually built RV's on a VW van platform and it was neat to see how they were delivered they would use the front wheel drive versions of the Vanagon platforms and when they would be brought in they would acctually connect 2 vans back to back so you could really be able to drive from each end a seperate van as long as the other was in nuetral. Its just interesting how some chassis parts were brought into production. I was always impressed with how many different chassis were used. Makes you wonder if they bought the pans with everything intact and ready to drive just drop down the body and hook up the controls. Also if you have ever seen any of the Tub buggy kits you would see 6 bodys stacked inside each other in primer like tupperware and never believe that a person could make a neat looking vehicle out of that big piece of fiberglass. No telling how far the Mini's would have gone if they had not lost the plant to the fire. Alot of vehicles are really assembled out of strip chassis or cutaway's they call the vans that they make the class C motorhomes out of in the state of iIndiana.

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    2. Bigdaddy, The pictures are not coming through. If you could email them to me at tatimm12@gmail.com I would appreciate it.
      I have heard a few different stories on how they got chassis, but since most I have seen are all different years, and not in the year they were in business I think they were donor frames from purchased cars. I also read in their sales info that all engines and components were rebuilt before sale, which also leads to the same conclusion. Ours is a 1969, but they didn't start making Mini Marks until 1974. Also, the serial numbers are all over, if they were delivered chassis Bremen would have assigned sequential serial numbers as a Mini Mark. The Marks were were titled in many different ways, VW's, Mercedes, etc. The pans were modified before assembly, the gear shift was moved back and shortened, pedal assembly moved back, etc.
      Tim

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  22. Also I spoke with him today its located about 20 miles east of Dayton Ohio just off I 70 near Enon the car is a 1977 model green with a dark green top heres another pic. Thanks

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  23. I have a 1977 body and interior has been restored it is red with white and red pearl red and white interior I have pics if u would like to see them. No my baby is not for sale . She was a labor of love from my husband and son to me prior to my husbands passing. I do however need help does anyone have or know where to acquire the wiring schematic for my baby Would appreciate any help you could give me
    Linda Barham Goshen Indiana
    Lindabarham 305@yahoo.com
    5743056135

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    1. Linda, if you google VW wiring harness you can find one on line. If not check an auto parts store for a VW manual, most have the diagram in it.
      Tim

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  24. I currently have a 1969 use to be yellow now black with thick white walls, very nice and still runs great, which I can post a picture of it. My email is sal.gonzalez02@gmail.com If you would like to see a pic of my car. I'm from Dallas, Texas

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  25. We purchased a 1967 Maxi Taxi sight unseen but talked extensively with owner and had a friend bring to FL for us. Unfortunately it has many things that must be done to really make it a good looker. What do you think a re-do should sell for? We want to sell ASAP! The engine and chassis are good and the body needs painted. The top is ok and the interior and floor plans must be refurbished to put on the road.

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  26. From what you are saying I would guess in the $3,000-$4,000 range. The body may be able to be polished out as it is gel coat, They sell new floor pans yet for the VW, so that isn't terrible. Unfortunately you have to take most of the car apart to do the floor pans though.

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  27. I purchased a Red Breman Mini Mark today, haven't picked it up, has been outside and has sever chrome pitting, but rest seems to be in fair shape, has hard and soft tops, missing side curtains but owner still looking for them. It's titled 1980, but the VIN # says it's a 1973 Super Beetle. Is this possible?

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    1. I had my bumpers re-chromed and they turned out great. Also got new hinges and door handles. Tim can give you good advice.

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    2. Carl, yes it is possible to have an 80 and 73. The reason depends on the state registered for one thing. The doner car was a 1973 and it sounds like Bremen built it in 1980 (on the 73 pan and engine). The hinges and handles are commercial freezer parts and can be found on the web if you look. I gave Wes some info, if you are still interested let me know. I had my bumpers and grille re-plated in Sterling Illinois! GREAT JOB by Gary.
      Tim

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  28. I have a 1983 Mini-Mark that I bought about 18 years ago. We do parades and car shows around northern Michigan with it. It is all original and has less than ten thousand miles on it.
    It sure is fun to drive. Ray D. Gittins - Harrison Michigan

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  29. I just bought a 79 Bremen mini mark from my aunt. Her dad bought it new from Bremen Sport co. Mine is white with a red removable top and red interior. I cant wait to get it back on the road.

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  30. anyone know of or where I can get books about this car

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    1. Jayson, as I understand it, there are no manuals for the Mini Mark. The VW chassis and engine can be researched through the Internet. If you need advise on parts, or any particular Mini items, I’d recommend that you contact Tim, the web administrator.

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    2. Jayson,
      There was some kind of "assembly" manual that you could buy from Bremen, I have never located one or know what it contained, maybe someday one will show up from an owner.
      Tim

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  31. Very cool site! Thanks for bringing soo many owners together. My grandfather taught me how to drive in my 1977 Bremen Mini Mark and when he passed away, 14 years ago, he left the car to me. My family owns a used car dealership and it has been sitting on the showroom floor for many years and is in perfect shape. 26,000 all original miles as well as the original plastic zipper windows and removable hard top. I've been in the process of going through everything on it with the hopes that it will become my golf club car this summer :) I can't wait!

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    1. I also added a picture of the car and pic of the vin stamp for your records. I also have the original title if you need a snapshot of that also let me know.

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    2. Michael, thanks for your notes on your car, Would love to hear more as you remember growing up with it.
      Tim

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    3. Do you know where on the body the VIN is stamped, I can't find a place on mine

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  32. Wow! I was so excited to see a Mini Mark site. I have a 1980 Mini Mark. When I got mine 6 years ago there was basically zero info to be found. Thanks for this wonderful website :)

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    1. Candace, glad to hear of your car, can you tell us anything about it? Since there was not much to be found on the car, I thought I would share what I have learned, and hope others benefit from the info.
      Tim

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  33. Does anybody know where Breman put the "Vin" plate on the body or frame?
    State of Illinois wants to see it and I can't find it on the car. HELP.

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  34. Carl, I sent you info for the location, hope it helps.

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  35. I have a friend with a 1982 mini mark thats in need of some dash wiring, (two different "techs") does anyone have a wiring diagram of this car?any help would be appreciated carlos.colon@eaglepicher.com

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  36. I have a 76 mini mark, black with white interior. go in parades and car shows. Looking for a back bumper, or fixed. one bar is bent. any idea's?

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