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History Fred Larsen's Roadster

Discussion in 'Traditional Hot Rods' started by Ryan, Mar 7, 2016.

  1. Ryan
    Joined: Jan 2, 1995
    Posts: 19,401

    from Austin, TX
    Staff Member

    Ryan submitted a new blog post:

    Fred Larsen's Roadster


    Continue reading the Original Blog Post
    Last edited: Mar 7, 2016
  2. Now that is a very interesting story...Thanks Boss.....Made my day as I learned something I never knew about Fred and that was the Shelby work he done at Moon.
    rpm56 and volvobrynk like this.
  3. flamingokid
    Joined: Jan 5, 2005
    Posts: 2,200


    Nothing like a streamliner story and a roadster pic to perk up a dreary Monday.
    Spoggie and volvobrynk like this.
  4. Tim
    Joined: Mar 2, 2001
    Posts: 11,912

    from Raytown Mo

    Good grief what a jackpot! Thanks for sharing

  5. I was lucky enough to meet and talk to Fred on the salt.
  6. Burny
    Joined: Dec 20, 2004
    Posts: 1,600


    I got to meet him years back at one of the Mooneyes bashes. He raced motorcycles, built world class race car, served his country in the great war, and worked on the original aluminum bodies for the Shelby Cobra. Found these shots of Fred and the streamliner that are amazing- even with the watermark...

    Last one is an illustration I did some years back of his 200 mph crash at Bonneville, that was auctioned off at the Mooneyes Xmas show...I wish I could have read this then- I would of gottn the car number correct!

    Fred was a badass.
    LC 1.jpg LC 2.jpg LC 3.jpg LC 4.jpg LC 5.jpg LC 6.jpg LC 7.jpg LC 8.jpg FFTB.jpg
  7. RustyRedRam
    Joined: Jan 24, 2005
    Posts: 1,127


    I had the great fortune of selling Fred his Christmas tree annually. Which meant we'd spend an hour talking. Or me listening to him tell stories. Great times with a great man.
    volvobrynk and catdad49 like this.
  8. very nice - the angel knocks out the grim reaper :) I hope all of us have a guardian angel like that.
    volvobrynk likes this.
  9. Bob K
    Joined: Mar 3, 2001
    Posts: 5,773

    Bob K
    Member Emeritus
    from Antigo Wi.

    I seem to remember from a bunch of years back that a regular on here (can't remember his name but he was a member of the San Diego Roadsters). Restored a Larson & Cummings roadster. I wonder if that was the same car??

  10. Michael Ottavi
    Joined: Dec 3, 2008
    Posts: 110

    Michael Ottavi

    volvobrynk likes this.
  11. Gabe Fernando
    Joined: Dec 7, 2008
    Posts: 309

    Gabe Fernando

    I had the pleasure of meeting Fred Larsen at B-Ville in 1963. A very no-nonsense person. Got things done.
  12. @L B restored the crashed and reborn 27T roadster, or maybe it was the Ak Miller rear engined one. Same ???

    This one >> circa 2004

  13. Hey Ryan I have a pile of photos saved do you want me to post them?

    Fred was a Californian he did go on an extended road trip across the US, he owned the roadster into the 50s and sold it I believe around the time he purchased Ak Miller rear engined modified roadster. That is the car he flipped going 200mph. Fred is the Larsen in the famous Larsen & Cummins team

    Back to the A roadster, postwar the Beck bros reportedly owned the roadster, they had run the rebuilt Rufi streamliner pre and post war. They were the brother-in-laws of Eddie Miller Jnr and this may explain the high quality construction. There is a possibility that this roadster was Stu Hilborn's prewar Hot Rod but have yet to find any concrete evidence of this. The closes piece of evidence is the roadster pictured in a 1946 CT news, Stu was running the engine that would later power his streamliner. Jim Travers of Traco has also been mentioned as an owner in the 40s.

    Sorry for the hazy info but there isn't a whole lot of material from that time. I've pieced the above from multiple sources and all those people were associated with the car I will eventually get the timeline nailed down.

    A 1952-53 Photo

    SANY5016.JPG SANY5024.JPG SANY5025.JPG
    bonesy, volvobrynk, cactus1 and 2 others like this.
  14. DDDenny
    Joined: Feb 6, 2015
    Posts: 14,337

    from oregon

    Sounds like my small experience with Fred was not a fluke.
    Called Moon years ago about their multi squirter intake for my small block Chevy engine for my roadster, nobody around the office with tech info so hooked me up with one of their machinists, (speaks my language), Fred picked up, machine running, he's talking, I'm asking more, he's cranking handles the whole time I'm sure. Never heard of me from Adam, didn't seem to matter to Fred. Nice guy.
    A friend to everyman I'd bet.

    bct and volvobrynk like this.
  15. The hairpin mounts on the Larsen roadster are the same as the ones used on the Spurgin/Giovanine roadster rear radius rods. I always thought they were one offs, so I wonder if they are of sprint car origin

    prewar 1940
    Late '48

    Now a bit of 6 degrees of Separation
    Chuck Spurgin roadster 1942 with the rebuilt (Rufi) streamliner in the background.
    Jim Miller photo

    Beck Bros streamliner (ex-Rufi) in Eddie Miller Jnr's yard
    Jim Miller photo

    Sorry for the tangent.
    bonesy, volvobrynk, cactus1 and 2 others like this.
  16. autobilly
    Joined: May 23, 2007
    Posts: 3,094


  17. Fred had style. Look at everything he had a hand in. The roadster, simplicity at its finest, the streamliner, shaped for speed.
  18. Danny G
    Joined: Aug 1, 2006
    Posts: 399

    Danny G

    I think Willie Dorsey restored the blue Larsen roadster
  19. "Hot rod ingenuity, 1970-style: The Chevys in Larsen’s pickup totaled 300 ci. The blown motor on the left was the smallest Chevy engine ever at 120 ci. To shrink it down, Fred removed every other piston in order to compete in the E/Streamliner class. For balance, the crank had one rod and piston and one pair of rod caps on each journal. The Larsen & Cummins team with the V-4 Chevy set a 2L Streamliner Bonneville record of 246 mph in 1970. "

    mind blown! thanks for sharing!
    volvobrynk likes this.
  20. Bob K
    Joined: Mar 3, 2001
    Posts: 5,773

    Bob K
    Member Emeritus
    from Antigo Wi.

    Yep, that's his name, met him a B'ville, very talented guy and fun to talk to.

  21. These were posted on the Screwdrivers club page on FB by Karen Sue Boren. I hope I'm not stepping on any toes posting these.

    1480581_1486547291605175_4921403659997510404_n.jpg 1655572_1510143009245603_3508758936870299425_o.jpg 1836590_1510144719245432_1436006892500975685_o.jpg 10460848_1510141922579045_4111985956804958732_o.jpg 10557731_1510142039245700_4681057655214358754_o.jpg 10679960_1486547174938520_6084217476715553637_o.jpg 10864045_1510142835912287_5198910493370150400_o.jpg
    bonesy and volvobrynk like this.
  22. This is the roadster before Fred flipped it.
    bonesy and volvobrynk like this.
  23. The name was instantly familiar to me when I saw your blog. Not totally sure why, maybe something to do with him being in Connecticut. Maybe just reading hot rod magazines back in the day. He was sure quite a dedicated hot rod and salt guy. Great story!
    volvobrynk likes this.
  24. PDX Crash
    Joined: May 21, 2017
    Posts: 1

    PDX Crash

    IMG_0035.JPG I purchased this 40 ford from a salvage yard, and did some detective work, the small block in this car was built by don cummins and maybe one of the last he built, that remains on the road today. After figure out who Don was, it made driving this car even more special.
  25. 208custom
    Joined: Mar 19, 2006
    Posts: 255


    I love this roadster. Might be a long shot but are there any pictures of what is going on with the front of the frame/cross member set up? I have searched for pictures but no luck.
  26. Burny
    Joined: Dec 20, 2004
    Posts: 1,600


    Damn. Looks like I got the number wrong... FFTB-1.jpg
    bonesy likes this.
  27. alwayslast
    Joined: Jan 17, 2010
    Posts: 34

    from n calif

    I am wanting to get in touch with who has the Larsen roadster. cell 916 521-6161 I have some original speed parts from that car.
    kidcampbell71 likes this.
  28. woodiemike
    Joined: Jun 19, 2010
    Posts: 313


  29. jimmy six
    Joined: Mar 21, 2006
    Posts: 8,025

    jimmy six

    I was luckier than most; in my earlier years of inspecting for the SCTA I inspected the streamlined more than once. Fred always had everything ready and couldn’t have been a better person to work with. If there was something I couldn’t see, he had a photo ready with a calendar ready in the photo. Something I used and shared for years.

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