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Hot Rods Golden ratio in car design

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by billfunk29, Jun 5, 2020.

  1. billfunk29
    Joined: Jun 28, 2005
    Posts: 21

    from Minnesota

    I am curious if any one has looked at the golden ratio for hotrod design? I found this on new cars but have never seen anything for hotrods.
    There are many threads on how much to chop a top. The coolest ones, in my mind, have windows not even close to the golden ratio. In fact they are close to the golden ratio squared. (2.8)
    And, yes, I do know that my mind is not wired to look at the world in a normal way.
  2. lothiandon1940 likes this.
  3. jnaki
    Joined: Jan 1, 2015
    Posts: 4,493



    That golden ratio is for designers to create the lowest coefficient of drag for most car factories and not to make the final design too outrageous. The front of a Tesla is supposed to be the smoothest design, but it is a future hot rod, not today's hot rod, as we know it. The speculation of liking a front grille of Ford Coupes and Sedans is an ongoing battle with those in one camp versus those in another. Who likes to mess up a Model A Coupe with a 32 grille? Where is the design factor in that, it throws the golden ratio out of the window. But, there are hot rod people that would not have it any other way.

    In hot rod history, there are so many factors that make up a hot rod that a simple equation like the golden ratio is just an exercise in writing a catchy slogan for a story. Every hot rod is different, despite some having the same running gear, motor and front/rear look. It is the small things and overall build from the individual hot rod guy/girl's thoughts that make it what it is.

    There are a lot of hot rods that would not make anyone's top ten in design and functionality. But, they still get built and run on the streets for different road trips in a hot rod.

    So, that is a simple idea for others, but it probably would not fit in the individualistic area of hot rods and cruisers. IMHO...
    Just Gary likes this.
  4. The37Kid
    Joined: Apr 30, 2004
    Posts: 27,104


    Nice Avatar, can't beat the lines of a T Head MERCER. Bob

    Last edited: Jun 5, 2020
    mgtstumpy and catdad49 like this.
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  5. A very wise man once said "The Golden Ratio is in the eye of the beholder".

    Yeah, that was me, I said it.
  6. Atwater Mike
    Joined: May 31, 2002
    Posts: 10,080

    Atwater Mike

    Considering the design geometry, none of the lines correlate to the central when hanging an 'A' shell on the front of a 'T'.
    Methinks, in retrospect, that Edsel knew proper aesthetics...
    lothiandon1940 likes this.
  7. This stuff is way over my head. If I see a car or a woman that appeals to me visually I don't think too much about the Golden Ratio. It must be a sub-conscious thing. Your brain must contain all of the parameters that the Golden Ratio consists of. I will admit that there have been certain cars that the designers were either all on vacation (or pharmaceuticals) because there was NO thought given to this Golden Ratio of which you speak.:D;)
  8. lippy
    Joined: Sep 27, 2006
    Posts: 4,581

    from Ks

    I've always tried to live by the golden ratio. :D 10758430877819793305.gif
  9. Agree! It is in the eye of the beholder. I like girls with glasses and tops chopped 3" or more.;)
  10. Edsel was sharp as a tack when it came to design. he was more of a sports car guy though if you look at his early personal cars. Granted @Atwater Mike you and me probably appreciate a sports car more then most of the people we know. :D

    I used to be able to spout the golden ratio right on out there. Not any more. I just look at things and try and do what I think works. Sometimes it does.
    lothiandon1940 likes this.
  11. The Shift Wizard
    Joined: Jan 10, 2017
    Posts: 1,954

    The Shift Wizard

    It's been the task of the original manufacturer's design studio to add as much "beauty" as their limited budget allows. Hot rods are the antithesis of what those designers struggled to create. If hot rods have beauty, it's a beauty of purpose, of 'lesser is more'.
    Oh sure, you can have your Shaggy Dog Contests and pick some winners. But picking the "best" hot rod is like picking the Pit Bull with the prettiest face. Pit Bulls and hot rods don't care about Golden Ratios. They care about, how fast can you run, and can they catch you? :cool:
    Desoto291Hemi likes this.
  12. F-ONE
    Joined: Mar 27, 2008
    Posts: 2,105

    from Alabama

    I have built 18th Century Kentucky Longrifles and have explored the Golden Mean-Golden ratio quite a bit.

    Mine many others conclusion.....
    What looks good is good. Trying to live strictly by the Golden Mean in every aspect of design......Is just something else to worry about.

    Some guys take to the extreme and layout everything with their dividers.

    Some guys get all kooky with it it and the next thing you know....they’re trying to turn lead into gold.:eek:

    Basically the “Mean” is 3/5 of a measurement.
    OK....3/5 from where?
    3/5 overall?
    3/5 from 3/5 between the area that the 3/5 goes.
    So you can see strictly going by the “Mean” or the “Ratio” you can get far far from it.
    In the end, what looks good is good.

    When done, if it looks good, I’m sure a Golden Mean guy can come out with his dividers and tell you why it looks good.

    What I’m getting at is the Golden Ratio is really found pretty much in hindsight....not foresight.
    Desoto291Hemi likes this.
  13. Paul
    Joined: Aug 29, 2002
    Posts: 14,807


    Wheel radius to tire sidewall ratio is critical


    Just Gary and The37Kid like this.
  14. ronzmtrwrx
    Joined: Sep 9, 2008
    Posts: 450


    I’ve read this entire thread and have come to the conclusion that the H.A.M.B. sure has changed a lot over the years.

    Sent from my iPhone using The H.A.M.B. mobile app
  15. Can you show us an example of a girl that has her top chopped 3" or more??:eek:
  16. fauj
    Joined: Jun 25, 2009
    Posts: 725

    1. 57-60 Ford F100s


  17. I am a firm believer of the Golden Ratio of car design, The most powerful engine in the lightest car!

    upload_2020-6-5_18-34-37.png upload_2020-6-5_18-41-48.png upload_2020-6-5_18-33-26.png
    blowby, Just Gary, wraymen and 3 others like this.
  18. dan31
    Joined: Jul 3, 2011
    Posts: 1,045


    Fibonacci based? .368, .5, .618, .786,1, 1.618, 2.618. It shows up everywhere in the universe.
    Baumi likes this.
  19. rustydusty
    Joined: Apr 19, 2010
    Posts: 1,547


    I like all sorts of classic cars. My golden ratio car would be a '39 Ford coupe...
    But I also appreciate a '50 Studebaker coupe, a '47 Ford, a Hudson pickup, '55 Chevrolets, and lots of others... and who doesn't love an XKE!
  20. BamaMav
    Joined: Jun 19, 2011
    Posts: 4,148

    from Berry, AL

    Exactly why the modern large wheel, small side wall tires look goofy to us, because they are! The only thing that looks good with an over sized side wall is a drag slick, and even then it has it's limits. Under sized side walls are just plain goofy! The perfect blend of side wall to wheel diameter makes or breaks a car IMHO.
    Desoto291Hemi and Paul like this.
  21. lake_harley
    Joined: Jun 4, 2017
    Posts: 942


    Not to forget E-I-E-I-O

    I think a car that's pleasing to look at is more like what some Senator or Supreme Court judge said about pornography....."I can't describe it, but I know it when I see it"....or something like that.

    Desoto291Hemi and The37Kid like this.
  22. gene-koning
    Joined: Oct 28, 2016
    Posts: 1,817


    Fortunately, I have no idea what a Golden Ratio means, and I have no interest in learning all about it. Therefore, I am not restricted by its rules concerning what I think looks good.
    I believe I will continue to build things to ratios that look right to me, weather or not they are correct according to someone else. Some days I just feel like a rebel! Gene
    Desoto291Hemi and ronzmtrwrx like this.
  23. tiredford
    Joined: Apr 6, 2009
    Posts: 488

    from Mo.

    I like most all of the old cars, even some newer cars as long as they don't look like a half used bar of soap. I have no idea about a golden ratio, nor do I care...there I said
  24. blowby
    Joined: Dec 27, 2012
    Posts: 6,592

    from Nicasio Ca

    I used the Golden Ratio for my visor holes. Then I went to the Golden Arches for lunch.

    0513201017a_HDR.jpg adsf.PNG
    The37Kid likes this.

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