Party time excellent, requires excellent tunes. Do you have the right part for your Wayne's World AMC Pacer? Looking to head-bang accurately with the best of Wayne's World fans. Well you're gonna wanta pay attention to the information we have for you today's Proper Prop. Proper Prop, the segment of On Screen Cars where we tell you how to get proper prop for your tv/movie car replica.
The object we're talking about today, is the cassette tape deck used in the Mirthmobile. Ah, the Mirthmobile. The famous ride belonging to Dana Carvey's character Garth. But where did Garth get his tape deck? Well through a lot of screen pausing and analysis we have an answer for you. But it's a little complex. There were actually two cassette tape decks used in the films.
The first film used a Panasonic CQ-H08 AM/FM Cassette Deck. These units were sold around the time of the film in 1990 - 1991. You can kinda spot the front of this radio in the scene where Wayne pops in the Queen tape. I had a hard time finding photos that matched. But if you pause at the right time, you make out the words Panasonic in the upper left corner of the device as well as the words "HI-Power". The bass and treble knobs are not readable in the film, but the location on the device is unique enough for a match.
The radio in the second film was a bit easier to find. It was a Kenwood KRC160. This radio is much more noticeable. It's almost as if Kenwood sponsored for product placement. I can't think of much reason why Garth would have upgraded so soon. The features of the previous units were the same. I would suspected a in dash CD player to replace the portable one on top of the dash. But not another cassette deck. I was able to find out a lot more about this radio. You can see the specs here.
Something to note about both of the radios used. Both of these radios are a single DIN standard design (180 x 50 mm panel). Where as the original Pacer radio had a two-post radio (volume and tuning knobs). The dashboard would have needed to be modified to allow for the larger radio face. This is something very common with vehicles prior to 1984. You can actually see the larger hole that was cut for the radio in the Pawn Star's episode where Rick Harrison buys the car. Sadly at that point the radio had been pulled from the car. Logically the radio should have been the later Kenwood model. I guess we'll never know for sure.
So where does this leave us with Proper Prop? Well the answer is simple, are you building a Wayne's World 1 or 2 AMC Pacer? I hope you enjoyed this deep dive. I know we sure enjoyed digging for this piece of obscure prop trivia. Till next time, Party On!
You got your ears on good buddy? Come on back. We're starting up a new series here on the site. Let me introduce you to "Proper Prop." A series about props and components of famous On Screen Cars. This week we're talking about the CB radio used in the hero car in movie Smokey and the Bandit. CB radio used through out the film for the drivers to communicate with each other. CB Radio was all rage in the 1970's. Everyone had one in their car or truck. Some vehicle manufactures even offered factory equipped OEM radios. Today with all the other forms of modern communication the CB radio has fallen out of favor. However truckers still use and rely on them. But what about the prop from the film?
There are actually two devices found under the dash of the famous Trans Am. On top is a 4 channel police scanner. But that's a subject for another post. Today we're focused on the Pace CB-166 unit under it. This radio was manufactured by Pathcom under the brand name Pace during the mid-70s. There are two versions of this radio. The only major difference between them is the number of channels. Early models being 23 channel and later being 40 channel models. The FCC was in the process of extending the CB radio band from 23 to 40 channels around the time of the film. You can hear Bandit and Snowman talk about jumping from channel to channel early in the film. They never reference a channel higher than 23 for this reason. Which leads me to believe the one in the car is a 23 channel model. Having a wild spectrum of channels on a CB at the time was a little bit of a luxury. Cheaper models usually only had a few channels that were "programmed" by changing out electronic component crystals.
I haven't been able to find an original price for this radio. However some pictures suggest it retailed for over $100 dollars new. Due to the popularity of the film, these radios fetch a premium on the collector market. I found one on an eBay auction listed for nearly $2000! Good luck finding one cheap for your T/A SE project car. The unit in the picture above is stated to be from Burt Reynold's estate. It was listed and sold at auction with the scanner for $25,000 dollars. Do you already have a Pace CB-166? Maybe you're an electronics geek like me. Well you're in luck. The fine folks over at CBTricks.com have posted the manual for this thing. It blew me away how much detail Pathcom put into the shop manual. Detail of all of the printed circuit boards are in manual with a complete listing of every component. Check it out! Tell next time keep the greasy side down!