Ultimate Old 911 “Collection”

I was on a flight last week and happened to pull out an older issue of Total 911 magazine from a few months ago. I had read most of it, but still had a few articles to finish up. I got lost in a story I ended up re-reading called Ultimate Barn Find. These stories always appeal to my imagination and the “buried treasure” dreams you have as a kid.

The man, John Small, lives in Wyoming and houses his aged 911 collection in an old Ford dealership. It’s one of those serene “only in the movies” scenes based on the pictures and description in the magazine. You walk into an old building and sitting before you is a bunch of old, really cool cars. In this case, all 911s. In fact, in every direction is Porsche. Completed 911s ready to rumble down the road. Project cars in various states of restoration. Old daily drivers waiting for their turn at new life.

If that weren’t enough, there is a second floor of Porsche parts, body panels, deck lids, wheels, etc. all waiting to be fit to their appropriate car. In the background of the picture below, you can see a row of front fenders and quarter panels hanging on the wall like Porsche art.

John Small, as it turns out, is a real estate developer who wants to some day turn restoring these old cars into his daily job. At last count, he had 51 “complete” 911s. The inventory list in the magazine was pretty amazing, even if none of the cars are extremely rare.

Can you imagine having a place like that to go and tinker on the weekends? Talk about a whole new set of problems. Just trying to figure out which car to work on next has got to be a new source of “stress” in his life. Much less deciding whether to work on a car vs. taking something out for a drive.

I’m certainly no mechanic, nor am I a wealthy man, so I probably don’t need to worry about anything more than putting the dreaming aside long enough to get some work done. But I will say, if I had money to spare, this wouldn’t be a bad way to spend it. Be a heck of a father-son project!

Unfortunately I couldn’t find the article online nor any pictures of his collection aside from a couple of shots of cars it looks like John has posted for sale in the past on TheSamba.com. If you look closely at the pictures though, you can get a sense of what the line of cars looks like in his old Ford dealership.

It’s kind of funny to think about how many people drive by that old Ford dealership not having the slightest clue what’s inside those brick walls. Think about THAT on your drive home today.


  1. That is really cool. Reminds me of a show I watched on Discovery Channel about a couple of guys who had the exact same setup as this guy – except with tanks. While it would be pretty sweet to have a garage full of vintage tanks in various states of disrepair, I think I’d prefer to have a garage of vintage Porsches.

  2. Just think, that 911 was the most beautiful car in a showroom in its day.

  3. When I was growing up, there was a guy in my town like this. He had a warehouse full of 911’a 912’s and 914’s in various stages of restoration.
    Then one day his brain took a wrong turn somewhere and he started doing radical modifications to them, the most memorable being a 911 pick-up truck. Wish I had pictures, I’m going to ask around and find out whatever happened to him and his cars.

  4. If faced with the question that i must select only one choice “A visit to the Porsche factory in Germany or a visit to Mr Small`s “hidden” collection”…I would take the latter!

  5. That would be a full time job for many years restoring those old beauties. At least I know it would take me many, many years to do that.

  6. I ran across this story online. Did you guys ever see this story when it happened? Unrecognizable 911 after a bad accident.


  7. mitchell says

    wish i knew how to fix cars up…

  8. depends on how old john small is but may never finish all those cars

  9. These cars would be a fun restoration project, ala Tim Taylor. Hours.. Years of fun.

  10. well jeremy with all that money you got from wheel of fortune maybe you should open up shop!!!

  11. I agree with James – do it with all of that WOF $$$ Jeremy. 🙂

  12. i always thought jeremy should’ve bought a porsche with the winnings and give away a porsche himself!!

  13. Ryan,

    If I remember the story correctly, it was written by Kevin Gosselin (author of Hunt for 901). If you want to get in touch with him for the pictures, shoot me an email and I’ll introduce you. If you haven’t done so yet, you really need to check out his book.



  1. […] About 2 weeks ago I posted about an old 911 collection a guy named John Small has accumulated in a small town in Wyoming. The collection is housed in an old Ford Dealership and includes just over 50 "complete" cars at various stages of restoration. Here's a link to the post in case you missed it: Ultimate Old 911 "Collection" […]

  2. […] – I've written a couple of posts about John Small's Porsche collection in the past (Ultimate Old 911 "Collection" and Old 911 Collection Pictures). Some call him a collector, others call him a hoarder. I'm […]