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History Classic Indy roadsters: Most beautiful oval racers ever?

Discussion in 'Traditional Hot Rods' started by Bill McGuire, Mar 19, 2013.

  1. blueprint2002
    Joined: Dec 25, 2018
    Posts: 234

    blueprint2002

    I think this is it:
    55 stevens offy.jpg
     
  2. blueprint2002
    Joined: Dec 25, 2018
    Posts: 234

    blueprint2002

    Anyone know the story of this one?
    Appears to be around 1954-55, but does not appear in the Indy results at all.
    Cadillac Connell spl-1.JPG
    Thanks
     
  3. indianapolisracer
    Joined: Feb 9, 2011
    Posts: 136

    indianapolisracer
    Member

    Yes that is the car in the same paint scheme as it sat in Boudeman's chicken shed it was complete with engine and all , believe he was asking 65k .
     
  4. Rootie Kazoootie
    Joined: Nov 27, 2006
    Posts: 7,847

    Rootie Kazoootie
    Member
    from Colorado

    Pretty obscure Caddy powered car that Bill Homeier unsuccessfully attempted to qual. at Indy 53. As near as I can tell that was one and only race entered. Cal Connelly was a Detroit Caddy dealer and was well known for building Caddy powered boats. It's been said that it was built with parts from the 1950 upright Cummins diesel car. Of course that car lives at the Indy museum nowdays so I don't know. I guess the parts could have been returned to the Diesel car afterwards, I really don't know. Here is the only other pic I've ever come across.

    Capture connell.JPG
     
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  5. 29AVEE8
    Joined: Jun 28, 2008
    Posts: 1,384

    29AVEE8
    Member

    This car has a clouded past. G. E. White's info indicates the car started life as a KK3000 new for 1950 Chassis number 331 purchased by Cummins Diesel Co. It qualified 32nd. and finished 29th. It was traded beck to Kurtis in 1952 and Cal Connell either turned it into a roadster or just used some parts of the car for his. The Connell roadster appeared as in your photo in 1953 with a Cadillac V-8 but Did Not Qualify.

    Rootie beat me to it.
     
    Last edited: Feb 4, 2019
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  6. Rootie Kazoootie
    Joined: Nov 27, 2006
    Posts: 7,847

    Rootie Kazoootie
    Member
    from Colorado

    In 1953 it was entered as the Cop-Sil-Loy Brake Spl. driven by Andy Linden. Very early in the race he hammered the wall suffering relatively minor injuries.

    Capture linden-a.JPG Capture linden-b.JPG Capture linden-c.JPG Capture linden-d.JPG Capture linden-e.JPG
     
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  7. blueprint2002
    Joined: Dec 25, 2018
    Posts: 234

    blueprint2002

    Thanks guys. In many cases, I guess, the people involved were too busy to bother with keeping and preserving records of what they did: just got on with their job.
     
  8. blueprint2002
    Joined: Dec 25, 2018
    Posts: 234

    blueprint2002

    Another stock block: SBC Grizzly Brake Spl, 1962 I believe.
    Interesting thing is the brakes, which are drums at a time when most if not all Indy cars already used discs. Maybe these were the sponsor’s product? Were they different in some way from regular drum brakes?
    The other unusual feature is the “right-side drive”. Who was the chassis builder? And the engine builder? No carbs visible, looks like fuel-injection.
    The car does not figure in the Indy results, so presumably DNQ.
    62 chev grizzly brake spl-1.jpg
    62 chev grizzly brake spl-2.jpg
     
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  9. Rootie Kazoootie
    Joined: Nov 27, 2006
    Posts: 7,847

    Rootie Kazoootie
    Member
    from Colorado

    Owned by a fellow out of Chicago by the name of Peterson and former Indy winner Pat Flaherty was involved in the project also. Based on a old 1950s Kurtis 500 chassis and was driven by west coast stock car driver Herb Hill. Only entered at Indy and Milwaukee in 62 but failed to qual. at either though it did run a consi at Milwaukee.

    Capture gr-1.JPG
     
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  10. blueprint2002
    Joined: Dec 25, 2018
    Posts: 234

    blueprint2002

    Thanks Rootie.
    So this is the same car then?:
    61 Peterson Chevy.jpg
     
  11. Rootie Kazoootie
    Joined: Nov 27, 2006
    Posts: 7,847

    Rootie Kazoootie
    Member
    from Colorado

    Same car with changes. In that shot the valve springs are conventional, but initially they were expiermenting with prototype springs that resembled a spring on a clothes pin.
     
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  12. Obviously changed the engine position for weight bias and installed disc brakes. Still the most beautiful and innovative period of American open wheel racing. It's sad that any innovation now takes place on a computer program and probably never sees the light of day.
     
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  13. blueprint2002
    Joined: Dec 25, 2018
    Posts: 234

    blueprint2002

    Thanks!
    Any idea who the crew chief was, or the engine builder?
    "Hairpin" valve springs were used on a number of European racing motorcycle engines too, from the 30s right through the 60s.
     
  14. mike 51
    Joined: Nov 26, 2009
    Posts: 103

    mike 51
    Member
    from norcal

    I don't know how I managed to overlook this thread....thanks to everybody who's posted these great pics!
     
  15. blueprint2002
    Joined: Dec 25, 2018
    Posts: 234

    blueprint2002

    51 johnson chevy 12-port.jpg
    Not a roadster, but I was reminded of it because it has a Chevy engine too: a so-called 12-port six-cylinder. Presumably an aftermarket head on a post-WW2 engine block. Anyone know anything about it? Number not fully visible, no sponsor's name either.
     
  16. jimmy six
    Joined: Mar 21, 2006
    Posts: 5,206

    jimmy six
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    Might be the one with the 270 GMC and Horning 12 port head, injectors, etc. after it was done qualifying back then the engines were torn down and the crank was found to have a crack. Another on was not available for some reason and it did not run.
     
  17. Rootie Kazoootie
    Joined: Nov 27, 2006
    Posts: 7,847

    Rootie Kazoootie
    Member
    from Colorado

    I don't know for sure but I think the Peterson fellow was the engine builder. In this shot you can see the extra wide valve covers that were needed to accommodate the special springs.

    Capture 077.JPG
     
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  18. Rootie Kazoootie
    Joined: Nov 27, 2006
    Posts: 7,847

    Rootie Kazoootie
    Member
    from Colorado

    This car was owned by Bill Johnson from the west coast and was powered by a Wayne 12-port. Your picture shows Gordon Reid at Indy 51 where he failed to qual. The car was raced on the west coast also and here's a couple of pics taken there. You can find more info on the Inliners web site.

    gmc- 2.JPG gmc-1.JPG gmc-3.JPG gmc-4.jpg
     
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  19. blueprint2002
    Joined: Dec 25, 2018
    Posts: 234

    blueprint2002

    Yes, that makes sense. In motorcycle engines with similar springs, they were out in the open, as it was not easy to accommodate them within the covers. Also kept them cooler.
    60manx.jpg
     
  20. blueprint2002
    Joined: Dec 25, 2018
    Posts: 234

    blueprint2002

    Thanks guys. Amazing response.
     
  21. blueprint2002
    Joined: Dec 25, 2018
    Posts: 234

    blueprint2002

    Something I've been meaning to ask you guys about.
    During the 50s and maybe into the 60s, HRM featured a whole lot (100s?) of superb cutaway drawings of roadsters/lakesters/streamliners etc., many of them by Rex Burnett.
    But such drawings of Indy cars seem to be few and far between, at least until the "rear-engine invasion" of the mid-60s. In fact, I have found only two:
    49 kurtis kk3000.jpg
    No signature, but the style appears to be that of Rex Burnett.
    59-60 kurtis kk500f novi.jpg
    Again no signature, could be by Bob Thatcher.
    During the same period, many road racing cars such as the Scarabs were also drawn by Thatcher and by CO La Tourette, but I can't find any more Indy cars.
    Anyone know of any more? Look forward to seeing some, if there are any.
    Thanks.
     
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  22. blueprint2002
    Joined: Dec 25, 2018
    Posts: 234

    blueprint2002

    Another long shot. The Jack Adams gas turbine car of 1966, which appears to be based on a Salih/Epperly laydown of 1957/58, possibly done in a hurry as not all the work is so beautifully executed as was usual with Indy cars. Turbine exhaust on both sides aimed slightly outside the rear tyres, still couldn’t have done them much good at racing speeds. And probably very unpopular with the drivers of the other cars. Unusual hand lever on the right side may have something to do with the brakes:
    66 adams airplane spl.jpg
    66 adams spl-2.jpg

    Anyone have more detailed pics of this car? Description? Spec sheet? Thanks
     
  23. Rootie Kazoootie
    Joined: Nov 27, 2006
    Posts: 7,847

    Rootie Kazoootie
    Member
    from Colorado

    Capture turb-2.JPG Capture turb-3.JPG Capture turb-4.JPG Capture turb-5.JPG
     
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  24. blueprint2002
    Joined: Dec 25, 2018
    Posts: 234

    blueprint2002

    1) Many thanks Rootie for those great never-before-seen pics of the Jack Adams special with the bodywork off.
    Interesting to compare the tyres on the car in 66 with what they were in 57-58. At least twice the width, and no tread pattern at all.
    That gas turbine I understand was a General Electric LM100, but so far have seen no figures for it’s power output.
    Who is the dude, in the cockpit, with shades and hat?
     
  25. s55mercury66
    Joined: Jul 6, 2009
    Posts: 3,764

    s55mercury66
    Member
    from SW Wyoming

    Wasn't the Jack Adams car formerly Norm Demler's?
     
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  26. Rootie Kazoootie
    Joined: Nov 27, 2006
    Posts: 7,847

    Rootie Kazoootie
    Member
    from Colorado

    Looks a lot like Sam Sessions. Bill Cheesbourg was the listed driver but Sessions may have had a go at it.
     
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  27. Speedwrench
    Joined: Nov 21, 2009
    Posts: 1,015

    Speedwrench
    Member

    Possibly Al Smith.
     
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  28. blueprint2002
    Joined: Dec 25, 2018
    Posts: 234

    blueprint2002

    Any idea who did the rebuild of the car, with the gas turbine?
    What sort of lap speed did it manage in practice? Thanks
     
  29. skot71
    Joined: Oct 30, 2010
    Posts: 156

    skot71
    Member

    The Adams car was the Demler car. One distinguishing feature is the unique tailfin with the Cadillac shape cut in it.
     
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  30. s55mercury66
    Joined: Jul 6, 2009
    Posts: 3,764

    s55mercury66
    Member
    from SW Wyoming

    I have always thought that Adams himself installed the turbine in that car, and that he was heavily involved with aircraft, whose construction techniques are pretty much parallel with space framed race cars, less wings and suspension ;)
     
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