BEHIND THE DOORS ... WITH AL LIEBMANN Shop Tour of Kanter Auto Parts
Photos & Text by Al Liebmann
Al's 1954 Chevy Wagon
Just around the corner is another hidden treasure, Kanter Auto Products - Classic Antique Auto Restoration Parts. This is the place for all your replacement mechanical and interior parts for American cars 1920-1986. The selection is endless for all makes & models including NOS, OEM and reproductions hard to find parts in over 170,000 SF of warehouse. Not to count out the Kanter Brothers car collection plus one of the largest selection of Packard Parts in existence.
Kanter Auto Products (www.kanter.com) is known for its humorous catalog covers that reach the mailboxes of tens of thousands of devoted car enthusiasts three times a year. But behind the comical covers of this catalog are two owners and a company that is devoted to keeping cars of yesteryear on the road for future enthusiasts to enjoy. Fred and Dan have been supplying hard to find and obsolete auto parts for over 52 years. Despite the light hearted catalog, they and the other 60 Kanter staff are dead serious about what they do. The passion for antique auto parts runs deep between the two bothers. It all started back in the early sixties with an interest sparked by the purchase of a 1937 Packard. In the back of the car were additional parts. Once the car was up and running the only thing that was left was to sell the left over parts, so from one large trunk, by today’s standards, started Kanter Auto Products.
By the early 70’s the brothers had left their day jobs as engineers to give full attention to their passion. In 1977 they purchased the 50,000 sq ft building where they currently reside and in 1982 added an additional 120,000 sq ft building. The two brother’s passion was mainly in Packards but they knew that Packard was just a niche in the market of collector cars. So they transitioned into other makes and models by buying out any type of mechanical NOS and OEM parts from closing auto parts stores and dealerships. As the NOS and OEM parts have became harder and harder to find over the years Kanter Auto Products took the initiative and began reproducing many of the once plentiful parts that were now considered by many to be obsolete, like water pumps, pistons, and engine bearings .
Having everything, including the exception, is the rule at Kanter. In addition to popular items. they have reproduced many one year or short run parts for many makes and models. Below are just a few of the ones that they now produce.
1937 Packard Super 8 kingpins – One year only
Front wheel bearings for the 1966-68 FWD Cadillac Eldorado and Oldsmobile Tornado
Ford V8 60HP main and rod bearings 1937-39
Ford flat head V8 Teflon coated pistons
Spring loaded cam for early 1949 V8 Cadillacs
Packard master cylinders 1935-50
Kanter is a family run operation that is run by a group of classic car enthusiasts; in fact many of our employees own antique cars themselves. Kanter brothers believe that we thrive as a company because of our employees and what they bring to the table in knowledge and experience in this industry. We know and love cars, and know and love parts. Recently we had a very proud day where we had all the parts that both a Tucker owner and a three wheeled 1948 Davis owner needed. We always give our best, no exceptions. Our trademark slogan “Do It Once Do It Right” comes from "The Exception is the Rule"
Thanks to Fred Kanter, Dan Kanter & James From for a great afternoon going behind the doors of Kanter Auto Parts!!!
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