About this project

B.R. Howard was contracted by the Edison Foundation to conserve an original 1936 Ford Brewster that was purchased by Charles Edison, son of Thomas E. Edison. The client wanted to maintain all original components, have reproduction fenders fabricated as the originals had been damaged, and to make the vehicle drivable for an annual parade.


What we did

These cars had a hand formed aluminum body built by the Brewster & Company and fitted to an extended Ford chassis. They came equipped with an 85HP, 221.0 cubic inch V8 engine, three-speed manual transmission, front and rear transverse leaf spring suspension with solid axles, and four-wheel mechanical brakes.

The Brewster Town Car was photographically documented and a 3D laser scan was performed using a Leica P40 prior to beginning treatment. The fenders and body were removed from the chassis before a complete disassembly ensued. All parts and fasteners were tagged and labeled accordingly for reassembly after the conservation was completed.


The original fenders that had sustained damage were removed and retained. Laser scans and measurements were taken from the fenders and wooden bucks were built as template for the new ones to be fabricated from.

The water pump and pistons had to be replaced and the poured Babbitt main bearings in the block had cracks and were delaminating. They needed to be re-poured with Babbitt in order to make the car drivable. The transmission was drained, flushed, and refilled using a high performance 80w-85w-90w gear oil. The engine, chassis and other components from the frame were dry ice blasted and solvent cleaned before areas of corrosion were stabilized. The interior textiles were also cleaned and stabilized.

The car was reassembled and transported back to Edison’s estate, The Glenmont, in W. Orange, NJ were it is permanently displayed.