SS Badge on Rear Bumper

I took the bumpers from my '38 saloon to a chrome plater, along with the crank loop, SS badge, carriage bolts and acorn nuts. I’m trying a guy I haven’t used before, but he’s been in business since 1976. Quote is $580 each for the bumpers BTW, but that includes an hour of straightening out the ripples. I think this car was towed by a chain around the bumper at some time in its life.
He asked me if the indented SS in the badge was to be painted later. He’d seen it on Chevy and Ford badges and grilles he had done. I said I didn’t know.
So the question for today is, should the SS letters be painted, and if so, what color?

Hi Rob,

I don’t know the answer. I have left mine unpainted just to avoid any ignorant anti-nazi glancing at mine and deciding to deface the car.

This one looks unpainted.


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Very good point. I’ll leave it unpainted.

Hi Rob.
The ones I have seen have the SS and the two small diamonds painted body colour however this could easily have been by enthusiastic previous owners. Cant find any photos at present but will keep looking.
The three I have owned (by coincidence?) have all been a similar olive green colour.
Cheers, Graham.

You can see the green paint has protected the original finish underneath in places. Couldn’t really call it chromed??

Unfortunately I’ve just found a period photo (B&W) that shows the SSs painted in a dark colour. Certainly not the same colour and the car’s body.
It’s on page 101 of Skilleter’s “Saloon Cars”

I suspect the colour was black.

There’s another in a dark shade on page 17 of Lynda Springate’s “Pictorial History” and yet another on page 23 of Philip Porter’s “Illustrated History” and again on page 106 of Andrew Whyte’s “History of a great British Car”


I have Skilleter and Porter and Whyte.
Black makes sense as a general choice, as body color wouldn’t really work with say Ivory or Gunmetal or Lavender against chrome, but I could see it in the darker colors, even Mountain Ash Green, which could be Graham’s, and is the color I have chosen to restore the car.
Well, it will be back in 4 months, as this shop has 30 bumper jobs ahead of me.

The Schutzstaffel symbol is pretty close in appearance the to SS Jag rear bumper badge. If the badge bolts on easily, you could consider leaving it off except for events where people would most likely not be worked up by it. I use a flat cap and leave my leaper cap off the radiator when I go to the grocery and so on. The flat cap is unlikely to be stolen and is easily replaced.

Sad times in which we live, eh?

My Dad made a substitute plinth, for his PIII Rolls’ “Flying Lady,” back in the late 60s, after someone damaged it (repaired successfully), and sourced a cheapo alternative, from Warshawsky.

Apparently, Dad subsequently came out to see he cheapo plastic one had been pinched, but was chuffed to see the theft had apparently incurred a cost: whilst busting it off, the bandit apparently cut his hand, and there was blood on the German silver radiator shell…:joy:

Today, he’d have been sued by the thief…:confounded:

Figures the Nazi’s didn’t “invent” any of these symbols. My grand-Uncle’s desk calendar with the a native New Mexico Indian symbol…

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Also the symbol of a not-well-known American car called the Krit (1909-1916).

Still, the SS logo is a part of our cars’ history. At a British car show last fall I displayed the car and was surprised to find that not many owners of late model Jaguars were aware of the Swallow Sidecars to SS Cars history.

Lyons wasn’t the only one to have to change a company name because of world events. Sternberg trucks of Milwaukee became Sterling trucks in 1915 for similar reasons.

Indeed, pre-NAZIs, the swastika was a positive and well-thought of symbol, extending back centuries.

It’ll be kinda the same now, for red ball caps…