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Features Corvette hot rods - picture thread

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by KING CHASSIS, Jan 1, 2011.

  1. jimdillon
    Joined: Dec 6, 2005
    Posts: 2,929

    jimdillon
    Member

    I remember appreciating many of those cars when they were new. They had real style and class even if there were things you did not like about the car. Just think of that Biarritz compared to the Cadillacs of today. I remember waiting every year for the new models, today it is hard to keep awake when you go car shopping.
     
    Last edited: Jul 8, 2020
  2. Boodlum
    Joined: Dec 19, 2007
    Posts: 323

    Boodlum
    Member

    #jimdillon, I'm sure you read some of the same source material so I'll link this one article from Automotive News that makes the statement:
    "Though it attracted droves of auto show fans, the Corvette was a sales bust out the gate. ...if it hadn't been for the Thunderbird, the Corvette would have died in infancy."
    Zora Duntov did a good sales job on GM brass emphasizing Thunderbird sales success to keep Corvette alive.
    https://www.autonews.com/article/19...mates-but-drove-different-highways-to-success

    Disclaimer: I'm not a stereotypic "Corvette guy". Never owned or wanted to own one. Had and took the opportunity to work for guys who had racing success with Corvettes - folks like Bill Fritts, Delmo Johnson, John Mecom, Jim Hall, Ed Sevadjian, Bill Jobe and a handful of others who passed through the doors of shops I worked at up and down Greenville Avenue in Dallas - shops of Tom Johnson, Carroll Shelby and Sidonius (Sid) Czekaj *the least-known and perhaps the best shop owner and employer - that nest of old WWar2 Messershmitt mechanics best known as Sid's German Automotive.
     
    Last edited: Jul 8, 2020
  3. jimdillon
    Joined: Dec 6, 2005
    Posts: 2,929

    jimdillon
    Member

    Boodlum, I could be wrong but I have never been convinced to a great extent by the claim that the Thunderbird saved the Corvette. If I could read a GM internal memo or directives of some sort, then it would certainly go al long way to convince me. There is so much stuff we have not been privy to that would enlighten us on a number of topics. I have read some GM memos and documents on several topics that really made me raise an eyebrow, such as some of the early Z06 stuff. "Experts" throw around opinions like horseshoes and reality does not always meet up with their biases. I have done a considerable amount of research on automotive since the 70s and I do not put a great deal of stock in what automotive journalists claim. Some of their opinions are spot on and some not so much. Sometimes their opinions irritate me since my research prove them wrong. Sometimes I get downright angry with some of the utter nonsense I have read from some of the so called "Automotive Journalists".

    There has been a Ford versus Chevrolet mentality since the 1920s and the failure of the T-Bird as a true sports car may have played a role in playing up the almost silly grudge between the two. Since the T-Bird failed they can claim so would the same have happened to the Corvette but the good old Ford experiment saved the Chevrolet experiment. I for one like Fords and Chevys and have owned both-when I read the insults regarding either it often makes me roll my eyes. The 1953-1955 Corvette was in certain respects a dud, but it is part of the history of the marque. I like Harley Earl's designs but sometimes I recognize them for being more style than substance. The first Corvettes were underpowered with an anemic six cylinder and an automatic transmission. The platform was a 1948 Chevrolet suspension. A sporty car possibly but certainly not a sports car in the European sense. If people want to call it a dud, I cannot argue too strenuously against that. If Earl's vision had continued (which it did for a few years-trunk spears and washboard hood on the 58 model) the car may have met a real demise. Duntov wanted a race car platform IMO and he would do whatever it took to keep it alive. The 1963 directives from the boardroom shutting down racing including the Grand Sport, helped put a few nails in the racing coffin, so much of our arguing today is academic. The Leman's tragedy and the problems with Washington in regards to GM being a monopoly may have played a role in the so called racing ban of 1957 (and then of 1963). Duntov may have used the T-Bird argument and probably used all the ammo in his arsenal but I believe that in one form or another the Corvette project would have been kept alive. If not for the Ford rivalry then possibly the intra company rivalry between Pontiac and Chevrolet.

    Fun to argue about it but the smoking gun on the topic has eluded me so far.
     
    das858, mkebaird, loudbang and 3 others like this.
  4. 1934coupe
    Joined: Feb 22, 2007
    Posts: 4,019

    1934coupe
    Member

    As long as there is a "yesterday" there will always be a "he said she said" both verbally and in print. One only has to look at which car has been continuously produced since its inception, no matter how ugly or under powered they were. I to have had both (modified of course) I prefer a 62 Corvette.

    Pat
     
  5. Boodlum
    Joined: Dec 19, 2007
    Posts: 323

    Boodlum
    Member

    #jimdillon, I'm not a marque-specific guy. I'm a who's-paying-me guy. ;)
    When getting paid for work for John Mecom Jr. there was the time he entered SEVEN different marques in the SAME RACE. Under those circumstances, it's hard to play favorites.
     
  6. DDDenny
    Joined: Feb 6, 2015
    Posts: 13,658

    DDDenny
    Member
    from oregon

    Jim, I would love to have been a "fly on the wall" during some of those meetings between Zora and the GM suits.
    I'm guessing there were more than a few "sumnofabitches" thrown around.
     
    scotty t, jimdillon and 31hotrodguy like this.
  7. Boodlum
    Joined: Dec 19, 2007
    Posts: 323

    Boodlum
    Member

    #jimdillon, spent a few minutes looking through my library for Paul Van Valkenburgh's 1972 book "Chevrolet=Racing" but have not yet laid my hands on it. As he worked in Chevrolet R&D, Van Valkenburgh is about as close as I will be able to get to an official Chevrolet source. IIRC he talks about early Corvette history. Will get back to you when I find the book. My early copy is in tattered glory. (btw the "Fourteen Years" refers to the time between the 1958 AMA Racing Ban and the 1972 publishing date of the book)
    [​IMG]
    Side note: I want to locate the book and re-read what PVV wrote about problems Jim Hall had with the Chaparral 2G aluminum Big Block 427 leaking oil and how Mr. Hall in Midland called Sid Czekaj in Dallas and asked Sid to send one of his mechanics to solve the problem. Sid sent Franz Weis to Midland and there's some pretty good stories out of that. Mario Andretti called Franz Weis the "best Chevrolet engine man in the world". Franz ended up Chief Mechanic for Chaparral Cars as well as his own company.
    I loved working for Sid Czekaj. Luckily became good friends with Sid and his lovely and gracious wife Lynn. In 1980 Sid and I built houses one street apart in North Dallas. I built on Oakpath Lane and Sid built on Woodhurst Drive. Both houses are a short drive to Sid's shop on Floyd Circle by Texas Instruments. Sid is the guy who hooked me up with Colin Chapman to work for Team Lotus at the 1984 Dallas Formula One Grand Prix - and spoiled a nice vacation in Paris with a new wife.
     
    Last edited: Jul 8, 2020
  8. 65pacecar
    Joined: Sep 22, 2010
    Posts: 2,083

    65pacecar
    Member
    from KY, AZ

  9. 65pacecar
    Joined: Sep 22, 2010
    Posts: 2,083

    65pacecar
    Member
    from KY, AZ

  10. 31hotrodguy
    Joined: Oct 29, 2013
    Posts: 1,655

    31hotrodguy
    Member

    LowKat, Deuces, enloe and 3 others like this.
  11. mkebaird
    Joined: Jan 21, 2014
    Posts: 335

    mkebaird
    Member

    Looks like a good start. Have fun!
     
  12. loudbang
    Joined: Jul 23, 2013
    Posts: 29,900

    loudbang
    Member

  13. Typical “hotrod” always torn apart!

    image.jpg
     
  14. mkebaird
    Joined: Jan 21, 2014
    Posts: 335

    mkebaird
    Member

    Typical hot rod, always improving!
     
  15. In this case it’s not a baseline improvement just a current condition improvement.:D
     
  16. loudbang
    Joined: Jul 23, 2013
    Posts: 29,900

    loudbang
    Member

  17. loudbang
    Joined: Jul 23, 2013
    Posts: 29,900

    loudbang
    Member

  18. loudbang
    Joined: Jul 23, 2013
    Posts: 29,900

    loudbang
    Member

  19. quick85
    Joined: Feb 23, 2014
    Posts: 2,089

    quick85
    Member

    I'd forgotten about indoor mall car displays, they've gone the way of "Tip Top Lucky Cakes"
    and "Wimpy" burgers. You'd get the local Corvette club coming out, and sports car clubs
    displaying competition cars. One more kool thing to miss.
     
    31hotrodguy, enloe, Deuces and 4 others like this.
  20. elgringo71
    Joined: Oct 2, 2010
    Posts: 2,963

    elgringo71
    Member

  21. elgringo71
    Joined: Oct 2, 2010
    Posts: 2,963

    elgringo71
    Member

  22. OMG, having raced at Lemans' and actually meeting John Fitch, this was a special episode for me. Incredible Corvette, with amazing story. Would love to thrash this around Sebring for a few laps.
     
    scotty t, mkebaird, jackal396 and 6 others like this.
  23. loudbang
    Joined: Jul 23, 2013
    Posts: 29,900

    loudbang
    Member

  24. mkebaird
    Joined: Jan 21, 2014
    Posts: 335

    mkebaird
    Member

    Out on the Siletz River

    P1030849.JPG
     
  25. Deuces
    Joined: Nov 3, 2009
    Posts: 18,801

    Deuces
    Member
    from Michigan

  26. Deuces
    Joined: Nov 3, 2009
    Posts: 18,801

    Deuces
    Member
    from Michigan

  27. elgringo71
    Joined: Oct 2, 2010
    Posts: 2,963

    elgringo71
    Member

    Since this isn’t a Corvette Hot Rod I will add a picture of one

    02086655-D627-4944-9C58-3322C3466FD9.jpeg 28AABE29-6AB0-4CBB-8496-D59E8D65B8B1.jpeg
     
  28. loudbang
    Joined: Jul 23, 2013
    Posts: 29,900

    loudbang
    Member

  29. My Mom took that picture of her brother's( my uncle) car I front of our house. I own those wheels now. The car is lost to history. I vaguely remember it being an automatic with power windows and it had a blue vinyl metal flake interior. Pic was taken in 1970-1 I believe.
     

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