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How do I Tell If my Cragars are Genuine?

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by 3spd, Jun 29, 2012.

  1. When looking at the long history of Cragar, and all the changes in ownership, manufacturing locations, etc., nothing would surprise me anymore about their wheels. :)

    Bonus question for anyone: what does (or did) the name "Cragar" stand for or mean?
     
  2. If I had to guess I'd say the first three letters are part of the founder's first name and the second three letters are part of his last name.

    But it's just a guess.
     
  3. squirrel
    Joined: Sep 23, 2004
    Posts: 46,872

    squirrel
    Member

  4. Yep.

    Now, who was he and who was his partner...and what did his partner go on to do?
     
  5. Like you needed to put a question mark there Jim. :rolleyes: :D
     
  6. 3spd
    Joined: May 2, 2009
    Posts: 541

    3spd
    Member

    Thanks guys, I sent the seller an email about my problem. They say they have been open since 1946 so hopefully they have good customer service.


    From Cragars website: "The CRAGAR Company was founded in 1930 by Crane Gartz and Harlan Fengler who originally made automotive cylinder heads. The name CRAGAR is derived from the first three letters of "Crane" and the first three letters of "Gartz"."

    Ryland
     
  7. Soooo....

    Crane's partner must have gone on to form Harlan-Sharp I'm guessin'
     
  8. Scarebird
    Joined: Sep 26, 2006
    Posts: 868

    Scarebird
    Alliance Vendor
    from ABQ, USA

    Perhaps they will dump this unilug foolishness and make the two main bolt patterns properly?

    I saved up my meager earnings when broke to get a set in the 80's - they rusted right up and never did balance out :mad:. 2-3 years ago at SEMA I asked the Cragar rep if they planned to fix some of the issues; his answer was essentially screw that, we sell them as fast as we make them - why improve?
     
  9. Good guess, but Harland Sharp actually IS Harland Sharp. :D

    Harlan Fengler went on to become the Chief Steward of the Indianapolis 500 for many years (and was a race driver himself in the pre-Cragar days). Very controversial guy, ruled with an iron fist (no velvet glove needed or wanted :D ) and eventually stepped down after the horrible '73 race where three people died and others were injured in various accidents- think Salt Walther, Swede Savage, and so on.

    Crane Gartz was one of the heirs to the Crane plumbing products business, something of a socialite. So far as I've ever been able to tell, he was primarily just involved as a backer- the amazing Leo Goossen actually designed the head originally for Harry Miller and George Schofield, and Fengler was the guy who got Craney Gartz to invest his money into buying the mold patterns from Schofield after he ended his production.

    By the time the wheels, blower drives & parts, etc. were produced, Bell Auto Parts had owned the Cragar rights & name for many years...virtually all the Cragar parts over the years have absolutely nothing to do with Craney Gartz or Harlan Fengler.

    A bit of obscure history I guess, but that's what the H.A.M.B. is all about.
     
  10. No shit I always considered the Cragars to be cheap.
     
  11. They look more wallowed out than normal and maybe not meant to be oblong.
     
  12. This is very interesting! I had no idea the Cragar Wheel Co. and Crane Plumbing Products were connected. Thanks for sharring that bit of info HS91.

    Actually they do have a new mounting style due to those who bitch about the washers and how they dig into the chrome. Cragar now makes an SS with a "dedicated" bolt pattern that uses conical lug nuts. So no washers at all!

    Cragar still makes an SS with the "old style" dedicated bolt pattern that still uses the "shank" style lug nut and washer. The will also still make a custom back-space at a very small additional cost. I think it's about 10 additional dollars per wheel.

    And yes, for all the uni-lug fans out there, they still make a uni-lug wheel.

    Here are the SS's I just got from Cragar/Carlisle. They are a dedicated 4-3/4" bolt pattern 15x14 with a 4-1/2" backspace.

    [​IMG]
     
  13. Scarebird
    Joined: Sep 26, 2006
    Posts: 868

    Scarebird
    Alliance Vendor
    from ABQ, USA

    Good. Perhaps they have fixed the peeling and rust issue also...
     
  14. 3spd
    Joined: May 2, 2009
    Posts: 541

    3spd
    Member

    Actually the holes are in pretty good condition, oblong as intended. I think the dirty/flakey chrome caused them to look worse in the pictures than in person.

    On another note;

    The person I bought the original set of lugs and washers from sent me a set of oblong washers (on their dime and let me keep the centered ones) and the one wheel I tried bolted right up so I am pleased.

    I measured the radial runout and the majority of the wheel is +/- 10 thou and there is one local spot right under the valve stem is +30. This was the wheel in the worst shape, from what I can find through google this seems to be acceptable. Any thoughts?

    Thanks,
    Ryland
     

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