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Early hurst history - trivia

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by dennis kirban, Dec 13, 2009.

  1. Tomilyn
    Joined: May 27, 2011
    Posts: 4

    Tomilyn
    Member

    You have the correct spelling - Prevost. And Volvo bought the company.
     
  2. Tomilyn
    Joined: May 27, 2011
    Posts: 4

    Tomilyn
    Member

    When Bill bought into the company they were only making coaches for tour companies. He and his business partner convinced Prevost to make empty shells. The shells were then taken to a converter who put all the necessaries of a house inside. There is no question Prevost is the top-of-the-line in coaches today. Everything my dad - Bill - touches is done to the highest caliber.
     
  3. dennis kirban
    Joined: Nov 16, 2009
    Posts: 230

    dennis kirban
    Member

    I go t North Penn Plating every week....long time customer of Dougs.

    Years ago I been down on Woodhaven and the Blvd by Nabisco....as a kid I used to go to Hellers junkyard which was by Welsh and I think Bustleton?

    denniskirban@yahoo.com
     
  4. dennis kirban
    Joined: Nov 16, 2009
    Posts: 230

    dennis kirban
    Member

    Giving everyone a heads up:

    We are doing a Kirban Reunion event August 20th a our house in Kintnersville, PA Our special guest for the event is Linda Vaughn. Probbaly the first time Linda has done an a private event at a house. Its a beautiful country setting. (Our son has his home and body shop next door and has minitaure horses.) First time Linda has been this far east in several years. This is about 25 minutes north of where Linda got her start which was Hurst in Warminster, PA.

    I have also invited Bill Campbell but he has not yet confirmed. Bill will be turning 90 years young soon.

    denniskirban@yahoo.com
     
  5. dennis kirban
    Joined: Nov 16, 2009
    Posts: 230

    dennis kirban
    Member

    More History

    I am reaching out to any original Hurst employees about our upcoming Reunion event in August with Linda Vaughn. I recently talked to Don Lane that worked on the prototype 1968 Hurst Olds project and he is coming.

    Also talked to Bill Campbell and I am hoping he can attend as well.

    denniskirban@yahoo.com
     
  6. dennis kirban
    Joined: Nov 16, 2009
    Posts: 230

    dennis kirban
    Member

    Here is a quick story crosses a two generations on Hurst

    About 12-15 years ago my son who owns his own body shop had a body shop in nearby Ivyland whcih is next to Warminster where Hurst was. This was in the 1990s. An older gentlemen comes in and wants to get his bus detailed. The bus is a Prevost bus.

    My son does the job and mentions to me that the guys name is Bill Campbell. To my son it didn't ring a bell.....turns out back in the 1990s Bill stored several vehicles in the same industrial park that my son had his body shop in.

    You think detailing a street rod is time consuming....check out the size of a Prevost bus sometime!

    denniskirban@yahoo.com

    PS: Bill Campbell was the Campbell in Hurst-Campbell and was the engineer part of the partnership going back to the mid 19503 when he met up with George Hurst.

    I have another good friend who served with George Hurst in the Navy at the nearby Willow Grove airbase which now has been vacated by the military. Hurst always had a soft spot for the military.
     
  7. theamcguy
    Joined: May 7, 2009
    Posts: 228

    theamcguy
    Member

    I attended a car show this past weekend which featured over 200 Corvettes. This particular 1961 caught my eye for several reasons. You can tell it is all original, and most unusual it sports a set of original Hurst wheels with the rare aluminum trim rings instead of the chrome steel ones.


    The spinners were an option from Hurst and the sun has faded the gold part of the decals to green which is common. The owner has a period piece Hurst shifter installed and making the car even more desireable in the Corvette world it sports the optional fuel injection system.


    In talking to the owner he bought it from a gas station back in 1965 and has simply maintained it since then. Hurst never listed the Corvette in their catalogs for an application for the Hurst wheels but they obviousily fit. Hurst only made 14 by 6 rims so width is not a problem.


    His buddies keep telling him to switch out the wheels but he likes the fact they match the exterior of his car so well. That exterior color is also quite rare as well.


    He hopes to attend my Reunion event in August with the car so he can get a photo taken with Linda Vaughn.


    denniskirban@yahoo.com

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  8. dennis kirban
    Joined: Nov 16, 2009
    Posts: 230

    dennis kirban
    Member

    Just so their is no confusion.....I had the amcguy post the above post for me as he does since I lack the skill to post photos...

    denniskirban@yahoo.com

    Fortunately my education about Hurst is a lot better!
     
  9. dennis kirban
    Joined: Nov 16, 2009
    Posts: 230

    dennis kirban
    Member

    I mentioned this story earlier:

    I found a photo that I had my son take of me and Bill Campbell along side one of his antique RVs. e will get my buddy to post it probably tomorrow. It was taken about 6 years ago when Bill had some of his vehicles stored near our shop in Ivyland, PA.


    Here is a quick story crosses a two generations on Hurst

    About 12-15 years ago my son who owns his own body shop had a body shop in nearby Ivyland whcih is next to Warminster where Hurst was. This was in the 1990s. An older gentlemen comes in and wants to get his bus detailed. The bus is a Prevost bus.

    My son does the job and mentions to me that the guys name is Bill Campbell. To my son it didn't ring a bell.....turns out back in the 1990s Bill stored several vehicles in the same industrial park that my son had his body shop in.

    You think detailing a street rod is time consuming....check out the size of a Prevost bus sometime!
     
  10. dennis kirban
    Joined: Nov 16, 2009
    Posts: 230

    dennis kirban
    Member

    We will be posting more unique early Hurst items here shortly as I had some time to dig through my collection.

    Someone mentioned earlier about the shop manual to install the Hurst T-Tops. I have that manual. If there was ever a project where you want to measure twice before you cut....that is one such project!

    Actually I will be working with Linda Vaughn this coming weekend at Musclecar Madness event in York, PA.

    denniskirban@yahoo.com
     
  11. theamcguy
    Joined: May 7, 2009
    Posts: 228

    theamcguy
    Member

    Appreciate Mr AMC Guy for posting this and he will have other interesting tidbits to post later this week also.


    As we mentioned earlier about 8-9 years ago my Son met Bill Campbell who at the time stored several of his unusual vehicles in the same industrial park my son had his body shop in. Once my son told me who it was we made arrangement to see his some of his collection. This photo shows me and Bill Campbell (co-founder of Hurst) in front of one of his antique RV vehicles. If I recall at the time he was lending it to a museum to put on display. I have no idea what make or year it is but RVs of this vintage are a rare sight today!


    denniskirban@yahoo.com

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  12. theamcguy
    Joined: May 7, 2009
    Posts: 228

    theamcguy
    Member

    Again thanz to Mr AMC Guy


    This was a rough layout for the custom consolette which probably came out around the early to mid 1960s. Again something that normally would have been thrown away.


    denniskirban@yahoo.com

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  13. theamcguy
    Joined: May 7, 2009
    Posts: 228

    theamcguy
    Member

    Again thanz to Mr AMC Guy


    Here is an original Hurst letterhead and 2 business cards from Hurst back when they were in Warminster. My history with Hurst runs from mid 1960s up until everything was packed up and sold to Mr Gasket in the late 1980s. By then Hurst had experimented with many different products since manual shifters really dropped in production numbers.


    denniskirban@yahoo.com

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  14. theamcguy
    Joined: May 7, 2009
    Posts: 228

    theamcguy
    Member

    Again thanz to Mr AMC Guy....

    Although not Hurst related except from the stand point of being original art work, my Dad ran his own advertising agency in the late 1940s and early 1950s. He used to tell me they would package hundreds of the slinkys on their ktichen table as he had the advertising contract at one time. When my Dad passed away in going through their storage garage I discovered this original artwork and brochure for the Slinky Dog.


    With the Toy Story Movies a entire new generation discovered Slinky. My Dad later lost that account to a New York agency and I believe this was the last artwork he had done for Slinky.


    denniskirban@yahoo.com

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  15. theamcguy
    Joined: May 7, 2009
    Posts: 228

    theamcguy
    Member

    Again thanz to MR AMC Guy


    ANother piece of original mid 1960s artwork you can clearly see this is all hand done. Steel bushings was a upgrade from the plastic ones. Remember Pontiac put their own linkage with the Hurst shifters to save money and also save time on the assembly line.


    Hurst had the threaded rods and later shifters had the stops at both ends. OEM shifters where round and aftermarket versions where flat. At least in the GM work I am familar with.


    denniskirban@yahoo.com

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  16. Igosplut
    Joined: Jan 1, 2011
    Posts: 158

    Igosplut
    Member

    I know I posted these before in another thread, but I'll put 'em here too. A friend gave me these years back. The sticker is unused and I still have the envelope they came in..

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  17. theamcguy
    Joined: May 7, 2009
    Posts: 228

    theamcguy
    Member

    appreciate Mr AMC Guy for posting for me


    Here is an original brochure from Hurst basically telling visitors where Hurst is located, the first photo shows the cover of the brochure which opens up in a tri fold complete with illustrated street map. Basically, in the town of Warminster, Hurst was situated near a major corner opposite the huge Johnsville airbase complex. Only a small gas station sat between it and the one corner. Today only the small service station which is now just a repair shop still sits on the corner and the Hurst building has been expanded to better than twice its size with an entirely new company called H & H Plastics.


    H & H Plastic is a huge complex family run that make plastic like containers for major food suppliers. They have several locations throughout the USA and I believe this location is the largest and their headquarters. Few years back I did meet one of the owners and presented him with a copy of the blue print for the Hurst building.


    A very faint outline of the huge Hurst lettering still casts a light shadow against the front structure. The word Campbell if I recall once was on the building also but got removed way back around 1969 so no traces of that exist.


    Like many historic buildings that change hands its ashame no historic marker was put up to note that Hurst existed in this area.


    more to come


    denniskirban@yahoo.com

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  18. larry woods
    Joined: Jan 20, 2010
    Posts: 566

    larry woods
    Member
    from venice fl

    First a sincere thanx for posting all this info and sharing. It has not onlly been very enlightening but also entertaining! Glad Mopar use was mentioned, my first new car, 64 Ply Fury, was ordered w/ 383 4spd and came with the Hurst shifter.
     
  19. theamcguy
    Joined: May 7, 2009
    Posts: 228

    theamcguy
    Member

    again thanz to Mr AMC Guy for posting


    This is vintage Hurst, the actual paste up that would have been submitted to magazines for a full page ad. This being the early design of the dual gate shifter. We have more neat stuff coming...just spent 3 days with Linda Vaughn at two major events.


    denniskirban@yahoo.com

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  20. theamcguy
    Joined: May 7, 2009
    Posts: 228

    theamcguy
    Member

    Again thanz to Mr AMC Guy (I sure can keep him busy)


    I have a bunch of original files from Hurst from back in the day. This note on the figures was attached to this dual gate flyer. 10,000 units at $400,000 was a huge amount of money back in say 1961-63 time frame for one single aftermarket product. Assuming I am reading the original note correctly.


    denniskirban@yahoo.com

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  21. dennis kirban
    Joined: Nov 16, 2009
    Posts: 230

    dennis kirban
    Member

    Few comments I like to ad to this:

    On the warning decal they also made one that illustrated the 3-speed. You seldom see that decal.

    The Hurst hat the yellow one listed for $1.95 Hurst has reissued that hat and they retail for $20 each. We bought about 100 of them and they were a hit last weekend with Linda Vaughn at York, PA event. She was signing them for people.

    denniskirban@yahoo.com
     
  22. theamcguy
    Joined: May 7, 2009
    Posts: 228

    theamcguy
    Member

    Again thanz to Mr AMC Guy or posting this photo.


    Back in the day this was a popular product Hurst came out with. Actually, a guy who I grew up with packaged some of the early product for Hurst and still has some. His company is still in the area where Hurst was located in 1965. He also served in the Navy with George Hurst at Willow Grove airbase....which is now closed.


    It came in this 8 ounce tube...the address show Warminster, PA so that dates it 1965 and newer.


    denniskirban@yahoo.com


    Hurst at some point in the late 1970s maybe early 1980s started to look at various other lubricants and other products to market as the shifter market especially the OEM contracts started to drop drastically after the mid 1970s as American Performance cars went bye bye for a number of years due to insurance and government emissions laws etc.


    More to come...

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  23. jipp
    Joined: Jun 20, 2011
    Posts: 1,112

    jipp
    Member

    what a cool thread. sorry to bring this back up to the top ( if you not read it, i recommend it, some great photos/info.) As far back as i can remember, when you saw a Hurst shifter you knew the car/truck whatever was a bad ass.. ooo, yeah hurst PR sure worked on us kids.. laughs. just cause it has a Hurst shifter dose not mean much, other than your shifting experience will be good.
    anyhow, the only experience i have with Hurst is everyone of my vw baja bugs has had a hurst shifter in it with reverse lock out ( my last one baja i built came with a empi/reverse lock out shifter.. so i just left it in the rig it worked fine so figured no reason to spend money on it when i could spend that money on the suspension.. especially as it was becoming clear i would not be able to drive a stick much longer when i started to build it.. became more like a giant model for me...) i cant drive a stick anymore, so what is your guys fav automatic hurst shifter.. thinking i want one for my tbucket project i hope to start come fall.. as only a few things in this project are writen in stone.. one im building one.. and it has to have a auto trans. rest is a clear slate.. i know the lighting rods with the 4 lever seems like a desirable shifter.. never used the more common 3 lever shifter so no idea how they drive.. anyhow, thanks. :)
    chris.
     
  24. theamcguy
    Joined: May 7, 2009
    Posts: 228

    theamcguy
    Member

    Special thanz as always o Mr AMC Guy


    This series of photos is quite unique as it shows an original Hurst wheel complete with center cap and chrome plated trim ring. As you can see in the series of photos the wheel has been torched making it totally unusable.


    Hurst, never discounted their parts if something failed to sell from what I understand. This became evident with the Hurst wheel sometime during 1969. Several reasons killed the potential sales of this product that George had invested heavy in starting around 1964 and introducing the Hurst wheel in 1965.


    He did offer complete sets to employees from what I understand priced at $25 to $50 for a full set. I recall maybe 15 plus years ago seeing a huge pile of Hurst wheels at a junk yard near me that had s stash of these wheels torched like this. Like many people I never bothered with them only to find out a friend of mine did obtain most or all of them.


    He gave me one for my collection which you see here. With Hurst wheels today being worth many times over what they sold for its ashame to see what happened to many of them that did not sell. These were brand new wheels.


    I have no idea how many got destroyed. But here is your proof that it happened.


    denniskirban@yahoo.com


    Some of you readers are probably old enough to remember when during the war effort cars like Auburns and other marque cars got turned into scrap. Not all of them end up sitting to be discovered in barns 40-50 years later.


    Dates I mention are approximate in this article.


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  25. ScottV
    Joined: Jul 18, 2009
    Posts: 819

    ScottV
    Member

    Hey, I am a little late to this party ... any pics of the Hurst wheel keychains that were either a promotional item or a gift with purchase of a set of wheels ??? I guess they where/are pretty rare. My aunt had a '68 Firebird with a set of Hurst wheels and had (and I think the current owner still has) it's keys on the key chain. It was basically a 1"-1.5" Hurst wheel.

    Secondly, is the dennis kirban posting here, THE Dennis Kirban ???

    If so, thanks for the help on the body mount bolts !!!
     
  26. donut29
    Joined: Mar 6, 2006
    Posts: 1,518

    donut29
    Member
    from canton MI

    Here are some pic of my NOS push down shifter I love the push down on the knob. The instructions are dated 1970 Dose anyone know when they started making these and when they stooped. Ever thing that came with it is still in the box kind of cool looking at the old brochure. Think I can send in the warranty card:D

    Also got a NOS T-handle from 67
     

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  27. oldcarfart
    Joined: Apr 12, 2005
    Posts: 1,437

    oldcarfart
    Member

    Before I had a drivers license I remember the "older guys" taking thier cars from NE Philly to Warminster, IIRC The story was if you bought a shifter there the install was free??
     
  28. dennis kirban
    Joined: Nov 16, 2009
    Posts: 230

    dennis kirban
    Member

    To answer everyones questions at least the ones I can answer in the above postings...

    I am dennis kirban and always use my signature in the posting. Anytime you see a posting of a photo from Mr AMC Guy he posts photos I send to him for this thread and the Linda Vaughn thread as I lack the skills to post photos in my thread.

    I am not familar with the Hurst wheel key chain...and I would almost state it never existed or someone made it since I never saw one or saw any info in any catalog on it. They did do cuff links in silver that they sold to the public and the gold looking ones were never offered to the public in any catalog to my knowledge. However, years ago I have seen hurst wheel key chains that were made from plastic model kits where they took a wheel from the kit and made it a key chain.

    Plus you go on ebay under Hurst there is a number of phoney or fake items that "claim to be original Hurst items" when they are not. One such item that pops up from time to time is the jackets Hurst made. By simply affixed a Hurst patch does not mean it is an original 40 year old jacket from Hurst. Its like anything else that becomes popular copies exist or fakes or clones.

    Hurst did have problems years ago where some one or some company without their permission stamped out some Hurst chrome sticks. The difference was the name Hurst was not as "crisp" or stamped correctly and the chrome plating did not hold up.

    I am not implying your key chain is a fake only I have not seen anything on them.

    For many years yes you could get your shifter rebuilt free and I am 99% certain it would have been possible to get a free install as Hurst was big on promotion and it was good PR. I know from a personal experience they did at least 2 free installs for my cars back in the day.

    As for the push down knob set up....I don't have any precise info on that at my finger tips. It was probably mostly for the aftermarket rather than OEM.

    One point of interest referring to the T handles shown....I was out at Bill Campbells house today....Bill Campbell was as you know the co-founder (partner) of Hurst up through 1969.

    I took a photo of it and it will be posted later this week...the actual real prototype of the T handle. Bill and Doc Watson were fooling around with a 2 part epoxy to work up a shape based on your hand grip.....the rest as they say is history.

    I had Bill personally autograph a few Hurst wheel cans for me.

    He did clear up a few questions I had. One was they never made an aluminum shifter stick. I do have a prototype of one in my collection but none saw production.

    I often wondered why the wheels and shifters only said Hurst instead of Hurst-Campbell since the printed stuff all said Hurst Campbell.....

    Bill told me he never seeked the limelight and George had already barely started making engine mounts when they began their partnership. Plus he said it would have been tough to put Hurst-Campbell on the sticks...and on other products like the Hurst wheel center cap etc.

    What is neat that the Hurst name the H reflects or produces the H pattern that the shifters had. Bill has a neat collection both of Hurst and what he bought after his time with Hurst......Prevost Bus Company in Canada along with a few other friends.

    more to come later

    denniskirban@yahoo.com
     
  29. theamcguy
    Joined: May 7, 2009
    Posts: 228

    theamcguy
    Member

    Thanz to Mr AMC GUY for posting.


    As I stated earlier to was just out to see Bill Campbell the other day. I had him autographed 8 Hurst wheel cans for me and a friend of mine. One of his prized possessions related to Hurst was this gold anodized 3 speed Hurst shifter with a plaque attached to the base.


    I am not sure if it is readable but this shifter was the very first shifter produced at their new plant in Warminster in I believe early part of 1965. Plant was being built in 1964 and some of their literature and promotion still would have a Glenside address such as the Hurst wheel cans even though the wheels came out in 1965 in the Warminster plant.


    Bill told me this golden piece of history was actually found in the trash back when Mr Gasket bought the company and moved everything to Ohio. Someone rescued it and gave it to Bill the rightful owner.


    True story....


    denniskirban@yahoo.com

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  30. Igosplut
    Joined: Jan 1, 2011
    Posts: 158

    Igosplut
    Member

    If you look closer at the decals pictured in that add Dennis, the first/front one is the three speed version. They also mention it in the description.
     

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