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Local craftsman restores a set of 18 Supercar Italia dodgems from the 1960s

| August 8, 2020

The freshly restored 1960s dodgems. (Image supplied by Carters Steam Fair)

A set of 18 Supercar Italia dodgem cars from the 1960’s have been restored to working order by a local craftsman.

The dodgems were restored by Joby Carter, 44, of Maidenhead who together with his wife run Carters Steam Fair which usually pays an annual visit to the Pedestal Field in High Wycombe. The fair was founded by Joby’s parents over 40 years ago and is made up entirely of vintage restored attractions.

Recently Joby Carter has brought back to life a set of 18 original dodgem cars from the 1960s. His dedication to traditional methods and accurate detail overcame countless complications during the restoration which took 25 years to complete.


The original Supercar Italia dodgems from the 60s await restoration. (Image supplied by Carters Steam Fair)

The dodgems were to be revealed in April 2020 at a Carters Steam Fair event in Reading to mark the opening of the fairground’s 2020 tour, but sadly the event was cancelled due to Covid-19.

As lockdown measures begin to ease, the Berkshire based craftsman and fairground owner has found a different way to present the dodgems safely to the public.

Known as Supercar Italias, these original dodgem cars were rescued in a very poor state in the mid 1990’s by Joby’s father John Carter.


Original Supercar Italia dodgem car in a poor state before restoration

In due course Joby decided to take on the restoration project in memory of his late father: ‘they remind me of my dad a lot because he loved the dodgems and enjoyed playing all of his original rock and roll 45s‘.

Reviving these cars has turned out to be the biggest challenge to date for Joby and his team.

New chassis frames had to be imported from Italy because there are no manufacturers in Britain, but when they arrived the pedals were on the wrong side and had to be adapted.


Joby Carter at Carters Steam Fair HQ. New chassis frames arrive from Italy but adjustments must be made to the cars for them to fit. (Image supplied by Carters Steam Fair)

The bodywork needed to be rubbed down, any dents and cracks filled in and then the eighteen cars were each painted by hand.


Joby Carter shows the mended bodywork of the dodgems ready to be painted. (Image supplied by Carters Steam Fair)

Joby said: ‘It’s so important to keep these artefacts of our heritage alive so that the kids of today can enjoy them.

As we begin to explore the ‘new normal’, Joby has found a way to open the dodgems safely. As a father of three he understands that parents are keen to get out of the house with the kids but are trying to avoid activities that involve crowds. So now the eighteen gleaming Supercars are set up for the summer at Carters HQ in White Waltham in Berkshire (just 20 minutes from High Wycombe) where household ‘bubbles’ can book the track to themselves and enjoy the newly restored dodgems.


The freshly restored 1960s dodgems. (Image supplied by Carters Steam Fair)


The freshly restored 1960s dodgems. (Image supplied by Carters Steam Fair)

The Carters Steam Fair VIP Dodgems Experience is open until Monday 31st August 2020 at White Waltham, Maidenhead. Tickets which give private access to the dodgems for 30 minutes can be purchased on the Carters Steam Fair website.

Further information on Carters Steam Fair can be found at www.carterssteamfair.co.uk.

*Source of article : Press release from Carters Steam Fair.

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