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Old 04-20-2007, 10:13 AM   #1
Ryan
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Default The Venus

*

"Flathead Youngin'" sent this tip off over... In the late 40's, a young man by the name of Ken McL...

To read the rest of this blog entry from The Jalopy Journal, click here.

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Old 04-20-2007, 10:29 AM   #2
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Default Re: The Venus

It's a neat piece of American automotive history he's got his hands on. As I read the write-up and was struck by the dilemma of whether or not to restore the car. I mean, here's one of 2 known to exist and he's swapping in a T-5, Edelbrock intake, raising the hood scoop to clear the dual carbs.

I'm a rodder but this is a very rare car. I know it's his and he can do what he wants to, but I'll be honest - I wouldn't have the heart of stones to start modifying it. That's just me. Anybody else feel the same way?
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Old 04-20-2007, 10:45 AM   #3
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Default Re: The Venus

It's different though really... his dad designed the car, so I think that gives him some creative freedom that most wouldn't have... mentally at least...
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Old 04-20-2007, 10:54 AM   #4
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Default Re: The Venus

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ryan View Post
It's different though really... his dad designed the car, so I think that gives him some creative freedom that most wouldn't have... mentally at least...
I can understand the family connection giving some freedom, but personally I couldn't do it. Now if there were a few hundred of them around, I'd have no hesitations. Of course, as I said, it's his car and he can do what he wants with it.

Also, it's a better looking car than a lot of the bolt on kits we've seen that mimic an AD Chevy, or that '49 Ford/T-bird thing.
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Old 04-20-2007, 11:04 AM   #5
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Default Re: The Venus

Quote:
Originally Posted by oldcarmike View Post
It's a neat piece of American automotive history he's got his hands on. As I read the write-up and was struck by the dilemma of whether or not to restore the car. I'm mean, here's one of 2 known to exist and he's swapping in a T-5, Edelbrock intake, raising the hood scoop to clear the dual carbs.

I'm a rodder but this is a very rare car. I know it's his and he can do what he wants to, but I'll be honest - I wouldn't have the heart of stones to start modifying it. That's just me. Anybody else feel the same way?
From what I have read, he was having second thoughts about the T5 and was now going to fit a 3-speed column shift trans.
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Old 04-20-2007, 11:07 AM   #6
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Default Re: The Venus

In the mid-70s there was a black Venus driving around the Eastside of Houston. Perhaps it is still around or it is the "Bellville" Venus? This car, according to the owner at the time, was based on a Lincoln chassis and had a Lincoln V8 in it. This guy lived around the Eastside in apartments in the Wayside, 69th, Polk, Harrisburg area.
We would often see the car parked under the apartment building off of Wayside as we went to work at Specialized Auto Parts on Adams St.
We all tried to buy the car at one time or another but the guy just wouldn't let it go even though it wasn't the most dependable ride around and had no top. We often saw him working on it in parkinglots or on the side of the road.
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Old 04-20-2007, 11:27 AM   #7
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Default Re: The Venus

Interesting piece of history from my hometown, I'll have to ask my uncle if he remembers the Venus.
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Old 04-20-2007, 12:00 PM   #8
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Default Re: The Venus

is it just me or does it seem like it prolly came out in the mid 50's?? the front bumper and splash pan look almost identical to 55 chev.. and the rear bumper looks alot like a 56 chev rear bumper.. idk.. i could just be seein things.. anyone else see it???
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Old 04-20-2007, 12:24 PM   #9
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Default Re: The Venus

Seems to me that he's going back to the 3spd. He is bringing the hood back to stock height...

The T-5 was to make highway driving more practical, but IMO I don't really see a rarity (1 of 2 known?!!) getting much freeway time.

My impression is that he wants to keep it period correct, so the flatty bolt-on's should be right at home. I hope for his sake that the Pebble Beach white-glove types don't pick apart a car that was restored and primarily assembled at home.

Well worth the read, makes me feel bettter about having to re-do aspects of my projects...
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Old 04-20-2007, 03:16 PM   #10
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Default Re: The Venus

EDIT: be sure to click on "The History" at the top of the page Ryan linked to.....fascinating!

He goes by "Patrick McLoad" and "Patrick/ Houston" over on the Fordbarn. He seems like a heck of a guy. I've been watching this build-up for quite a while. As was mentioned, he seems to be going back to the 3 speed. I think he has been more than conscientious about the details....just look at the build quality!


I know this means a lot to him and I think it's cool that he's willing to take the time (and some serious $$) to save some history....
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Old 04-20-2007, 03:17 PM   #11
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Default Re: The Venus

I think the period-correct speed parts are acceptable. If you look at the picture of the original, it had 2x2s on it. How many people in that era were really going to go to all the trouble to strip a shoebox Ford down to the chassis, bolt on and finish a fiberglass roadster body, and then leave the flathead all stock?

The T5 wouldn't have bothered me too much, but it does open the door to a slippery slope of other modifications. If he wants driveability (and I'm all about driveability, no matter what the car is worth or how rare it is) maybe he should consider a '49 Ford overdrive. It doesn't sound like he knows much about 1950s American cars really, he might not even know one exists.

Sucks that the previous owners screwed him so hard on the initial purchase, though.

-Dave
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Old 04-20-2007, 03:46 PM   #12
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Default Re: The Venus

Man that is just plain cool.
That would be an interesting body to "repop" if he could do it.
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Old 04-20-2007, 04:39 PM   #13
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Default Re: The Venus

Nice read and an immense challenge but the car's styling is all over the place, I'd still have it though.
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Old 04-20-2007, 06:12 PM   #14
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Default Re: The Venus

Just a note to thank you all for the kind remarks about the Venus and for visiting my site.

Yes, after going thru two T5 trannies, I decided to stay period correct with the 3-speed. An overdrive would have been nice, but I'm converting to 12 volts, so the orig. 6volt solenoid would have had to be converted...but I guess that could have been done. But like a previous post mentioned, I seriously doubt I'll be getting on the freeway much in this "eggshell"!! Way too many uninsured drivers out there, and parts for the Venus are hard to come by these days!

The hood scoop has been re-shaped and I am suppose to get it in a couple of weeks...can't wait! I will have to run the dual-97's without an air cleaner as there is only about 2" clearance with the air scoop.

Original photos show that my Dad had 2 Holley 94's on the manifold, which had to have been some "after-market" dual-intake head. I just wish I had a better photo of his engine!

I'm currently in the process of finishing the steering linkage, which will require a dual-ujoint from Borgeson, a bearing, and a couple of couplers. Then I have to turn my attention to making right and left windshield pillars as found on the "prototype". None of these exist as later Venus bodies apparently went to something else (with a wrap-around windshield)....I only have photos to go by. This WILL be a challenge! I also have to make the front grill from scratch, but I don't see that as being too tough.

So after I get all of these mechanical things taken care of, I can begin to finish the body. I agree the styling is somewhat wierd; I think there was something in the water back in the 50's! Just take a look at some of Harley Earl's stuff!

Thanks again guys.

Patrick McLoad/Houston
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Old 04-20-2007, 07:17 PM   #15
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Default Re: The Venus

WOW. That was great to hear from you McLoad. Usually we just get the "I heard this and I heard that",stories. It's cool that you are a new member. Now you need to keep us posted on your progress,and with pic's! I'm still close with Darryl Roth,Eds youngest son,and he used to own two different cars his dad built. The Druid Princess and the Megacycle Transport. He sold them,and I remember telling him he would regret it. Those cars are history makers. Or at least "one offs". I wouldn't have EVER sold either one. Your lucky.
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Old 04-20-2007, 07:44 PM   #16
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Default Re: The Venus

There were many, many folks in the early-mid-50s looking for the pot of gold at the end of the rainbow in specialty automobiles. The Venus and others were great early examples of this group which continued into the 60s with the Bradleys and various other VW based body conversions. Many makers offered bodies in various wheelbases for different chassis from Ford to Cadillac and even Mopars.
It was a very interesting time in the build-it-yourself automotive hobby.
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Old 04-20-2007, 07:48 PM   #17
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Default Re: The Venus

I'd say the Manx is probably the most sucessful one. Followed by Baja kits.
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Old 04-20-2007, 08:00 PM   #18
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Default Re: The Venus

So are you officially a HAMBer now because this is one hell of an introduction. We won't hold "The Avenger" against you.

Stick around. We could use a few more oilfield type folks here.
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Old 04-20-2007, 08:04 PM   #19
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Default Re: The Venus

....spreading the gospel!

I think you'll fit right in around these parts. The passion you have for your unique automobile is what you'll find throughout this board....

There is a HUGE knowledge base here....from flatheads, to 60's show rods, to things that are not even HAMB related.....


welcome aboard!


Quote:
Originally Posted by mcload View Post
Just a note to thank you all for the kind remarks about the Venus and for visiting my site.

Yes, after going thru two T5 trannies, I decided to stay period correct with the 3-speed. An overdrive would have been nice, but I'm converting to 12 volts, so the orig. 6volt solenoid would have had to be converted...but I guess that could have been done. But like a previous post mentioned, I seriously doubt I'll be getting on the freeway much in this "eggshell"!! Way too many uninsured drivers out there, and parts for the Venus are hard to come by these days!

The hood scoop has been re-shaped and I am suppose to get it in a couple of weeks...can't wait! I will have to run the dual-97's without an air cleaner as there is only about 2" clearance with the air scoop.

Original photos show that my Dad had 2 Holley 94's on the manifold, which had to have been some "after-market" dual-intake head. I just wish I had a better photo of his engine!

I'm currently in the process of finishing the steering linkage, which will require a dual-ujoint from Borgeson, a bearing, and a couple of couplers. Then I have to turn my attention to making right and left windshield pillars as found on the "prototype". None of these exist as later Venus bodies apparently went to something else (with a wrap-around windshield)....I only have photos to go by. This WILL be a challenge! I also have to make the front grill from scratch, but I don't see that as being too tough.

So after I get all of these mechanical things taken care of, I can begin to finish the body. I agree the styling is somewhat wierd; I think there was something in the water back in the 50's! Just take a look at some of Harley Earl's stuff!

Thanks again guys.

Patrick McLoad/Houston
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Old 04-20-2007, 08:31 PM   #20
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Default Re: The Venus

Just read the whole journal story. It was great. Glad to see you went with the original style tranny. Have you considered pulling a mold off the body,before you refinish it? Might be a market now,that wasn't there when it was originally built. Think about it. You could accomplish what your dad couldn't. I'm sure Kitcar Magazine might be interested in it. Kinda reminds me of the cars that Curtis built. Just not as rounded.
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