NOTE: Rather than add them into a new post at the end of this thread, I'm editing this post in March 2012, two years after I originally wrote it, to include some additional Sears Catalog listings from 1946-47. Since my first post above had already reached maximum allowable size, I decided to put them here, as they are logical additions to that first post:
This appeared in the Spring 1946 Sears catalog, and may be the earliest listing for the David Bradley trailer. It is a rather poor artistic rendering, showing longer stake pockets than these trailers actually had. This trailer was sold without fenders (which were then listed as optional) and with what appears to be a different tongue and coupler than those that appeared later. Note that the factory location in this listing is shown as Milwaukee, Wisconsin, which indicates that the earliest David Bradley trailers were almost certainly manufactured by Ben-Hur:
The very next Sears catalog from Fall 1946 shows the David Bradley trailer with round fenders as seen on the Ben-Hur 22-46 and 22-47 trailers, as well as in the photo of the white DB trailer in my first post above. (The 8' David Bradley trailer pictured next to it will be discussed in later posts in this thread.)
The coupler on the 6' David Bradley trailer appears to have changed from the one shown in the earlier Spring 1946 catalog. Note that the factory location for the trailer is now shown as Geneva, Illinois (which, as noted in a post below, indicates it was built for Sears by Dunbar-Kapple):
The next catalog, from Spring 1947, shows the David Bradley trailer with the "roadster" style fenders that were used throughout the remainder of the trailer's production. The tongue shown here appears to be in its final form as well. The coupler appears to be the same one shown in the Fall 1946 catalog above, which was different from the later coupler used on the Ben-Hur trailers and most of the DB trailers (the coupler shown in the Fall 1947 Farm Catalog in my first post above is this later version):
For an approximate manufacturing sequence and timeline for the David Bradley trailer, see post #129 on page 13 of this thread.
BACK TO ORIGINAL POST from 3/2010:
Hey, John - Sure hope you get it!
So, the plot thickens!....that's pretty fascinating. I googled Dunbar Kapple and learned that they were located in Geneva, Illinois, which jives with the 1947 catalog description (and is not far from the David Bradley factory near Chicago). In the 1950's, Dunbar Kapple made M100 and M101 military trailers, and other trailers as well. It turns out that Sears owned an interest in Dunbar Kapple, which was one of Sears' important suppliers (see http://www.cbeid.org/LocalLegends.html, the portion on Larry Dempsey). I read elsewhere that the company was sold in 1960.
Was Dunbar Kapple the actual manufacturer of the Ben-Hur / David Bradley Trailer? - or, maybe Ben-Hur manufactured and sold them to Sears / Dunbar Kapple? Or perhaps at some point, Sears bought the design rights from Ben-Hur, and from that point on, Dunbar Kapple built the David Bradley trailers?
Hopefully further research will answer these questions.
I came across the following post on another forum, http://expeditionportal.com/forum/sh...163#post592163, which seems to describe one of these same trailers (a.k.a. "The Silver-Tongued Devil" ):
Dunbar Kapple Trailer Info Wanted
Today I saw a Dunbar Kapple M-100 look-alike. It wasn't (I don't think), a M-100 because the side rails stopped immediately at the top of the rounded fenders (it didn't have the extra flare on the top that M-100s or M-416s or M-101s have). I know it was a Dunbar Kapple because it still had the ID plate (sorry, I didn't get any other info from the data plate). My guess is a post-war civilian model. I googled for an hour trying to find one similar and can't find anything.
It was blue that I'm fairly certain was original. A drop down tailgate. No lights, except for what would be a license plate light that also looks original. It's spring-over, but no shocks and I don't think it ever had shocks. The hitch is a single 36" long bar with no triangulation, and I don't think it ever had any triangulation. The bed looked original with a diamond plate pattern. It had stake pockets for wood stakes. The bed was exactly 72" by 46". It was named the "Silver Tongued Devil" (which if I buy it, I will definitely try to keep the lettering).
I've been looking for a M-100 to pull behind my Jeep, and ran across this. I'm trying to decide if it will be worth picking up, even though it's shorter (in overall height) than a M-100, so it has less cargo capacity. It also needs some work, like a new pan due to a large hole. But otherwise it seemed to be in good shape.
If I pick it up this will be the start of the re-build thread...
This raises another possibility. Maybe the round-fendered variety of these trailers that had David Bradley wheels, as shown in the first post above, were actually the Dunbar Kapple version of the trailer sold under their own name. If so, perhaps Sears/David Bradley provided the wheels for those trailers, as well as for the David Bradley-branded version.
Eventually maybe one of the Dunbar Kapple-branded variety will surface, and someone can post some photos of it on this thread.