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History Ramchargers/Chrysler History

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by BillyShope, Aug 23, 2018.

  1. I hate to break the news to you the Chrysler engineering school is no longer. Do to that my son went to ferris state in big rapids. When I asked my son why it's no longer open he said gm was taking all the students that graduated.
     
  2. BillyShope
    Joined: Nov 15, 2007
    Posts: 131

    BillyShope
    Member

    That's been the problem since the fifties! Chrysler carried the students until they graduated and then were unable to match the General's offers when they graduated. I went back to school when I graduated, but I know that others went to GM or Ford. Very short sighted management at Chrysler (or Fiat or whatever it's called now). Incidentally, I believe CIE failed back in the sixties, but then was revived for a short time. Sorry about your son. Learning automotive engineering from automotive engineers was far better than anything Ferris State could offer.
     
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  3. BillyShope
    Joined: Nov 15, 2007
    Posts: 131

    BillyShope
    Member

    Good question! I went to Transmission Design as my "permanent" assignment after graduation from CIE. There, I helped Bohdan Andrushkiw in the matching of torque converter components. Used this knowledge later when I worked at AiResearch matching gas turbine components. Yes, everything is considered when selecting a torque converter. By the way, did you know that Chrysler used both torque converters and fluid couplings in front of a manual transmission with the old flatheads? Another Ramcharger (Troy Simonsen) used a '50 Dodge Wayfarer (and a Chrysler block and Isky cam) with one of these transmission setups to blow off OTHER cheaters (Oldsmobiles with high lift rockers concealed below modified valve covers, for instance) in one of the stock classes.
     
  4. BillyShope
    Joined: Nov 15, 2007
    Posts: 131

    BillyShope
    Member

    Just remembered; Troy found out that the Chrysler flatheads had built in rev limiters. If you over revved, the piston would close the spark plug.
     
  5. I always assumed that only fluid couplings got used with all the variations of the Chrysler semi-automatic transmissions. Did torque converters get used with some makes and engine/transmission combinations but not others? Or was there a changeover during a certain model year? A torque converter should have helped to give some of the early Fluid Drive cars a little more pep.
     
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  6. BillyShope
    Joined: Nov 15, 2007
    Posts: 131

    BillyShope
    Member

    Both torque converters and fluid couplings were used. The transmission itself was a "regular" manual transmission. Have no idea how the hydrodynamic units were proportioned in a given product line or, for that matter, whether both were offered at the same time. The Chrysler manual transmissions never did have, to my knowledge, a particular reputation for strength. I believe it was in the thirties or forties that it was discovered that the helix angle was opposite to that of Ford and GM and, of course, they immediately changed it.
     
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  7. alanp561
    Joined: Oct 1, 2017
    Posts: 648

    alanp561
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    Billy, I'm about 10 years younger than you and when I was a kid, I considered you guys as my heroes. I had others, of course, but I followed everything you did with that car and was always amazed that something that ugly did what it did so well. Thank you for the years of pleasure I've had reading about and seeing what you all have done. Drag racing would have been so much less without you.
     
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  8. BillyShope
    Joined: Nov 15, 2007
    Posts: 131

    BillyShope
    Member

    Would like to return to the years of the gassers and the acrobatic flagmen.
     
  9. racer27x
    Joined: May 2, 2010
    Posts: 4

    racer27x
    Member

    Billy Shope, here's a new question, actually, five to start. I build model cars and I'm about to start one of the Ramchargers Woody Gilmore chassis top fuel dragster.
    1. Was the frame painted all black?
    2. What color was the block?
    3. Were the heads painted the same color?
    4. Was the bodywork bare aluminum on the inside?
    5. Are there any pictures with the body off?

    dragster1.jpg
     
    Last edited: Sep 20, 2018
  10. Silverplate
    Joined: Mar 4, 2011
    Posts: 153

    Silverplate
    Member

    When I was a kid I got hooked with a guy last name Moore who ran the Chrysler Trouble Shooting Competition. I went along on a trip to Milan Dragway with him and his son. They raced a Valiant station wagon with a slant six. Always wondered what happened to that car and them. Did you know him by chance.
     
  11. Chrysler really had a mess of semi-automatic transmissions in the 40s and 50s. Here's more information than anyone will ever need on the subject of Chrysler's semi- and fully-automatic transmissions. :rolleyes:

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_Chrysler_transmissions

    It looks like the bulk of them used fluid couplings with the exception of the Plymouth Hy-Drive. It seems to be the first to use a torque converter, though it was connected to a 3 spd manual transmission. In 1954 the PowerFlite was the first fully automatic trans from Chrysler and also used a torque converter coupling. :D
     
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  12. BillyShope
    Joined: Nov 15, 2007
    Posts: 131

    BillyShope
    Member

    Don't know, don't know, don't know, don't know, and don't know. Sorry I can't help you.
     
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  13. BillyShope
    Joined: Nov 15, 2007
    Posts: 131

    BillyShope
    Member

    If they did much with the slant six, they probably know Pete McNichol. As far as I know, Pete is still around, but I haven't heard from him for years. He was kind enough to send me a big printout of all his accomplishments with the slant six. A remarkable engine and a truly remarkable man. I wonder if anyone is still offering the Hyperpack intake manifold. I'll have to check the Internet.
     
  14. racer27x
    Joined: May 2, 2010
    Posts: 4

    racer27x
    Member

    Are any other Ramchargers active online these days?
     
  15. thebearded1!
    Joined: Apr 27, 2018
    Posts: 167

    thebearded1!
    Member
    from Maryland

    I still remember walking up to them asking for autographs to this day! It was the room in the tower on the left side. Still have the program too! The Super Stock Reunions put on by Frank Spittle were a blast. Watching the racing and getting to meet the Ramchargers, Bruce Larson, EJ Potter, Don Gartlits, Ronnie Sox and all the other big names I got to talk to definitely got me hooked into cars and drag racing. Thanks to my dad for taking me to all those events. Thanks to Frank Spittle for putting them on too as I know it had to be a lot of work.

    Billy Shope,
    I have a roadster with a slant six in it and I'd love to hear any fun history and secrets you have about the leaning tower of power! Thanks in advanced its been great reading all of your stories on this post.
     
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  16. khead47
    Joined: Mar 29, 2010
    Posts: 1,536

    khead47
    Member

    I can remember seeing the high and mighty parked in the front yard of a house in Dearborn Hgts. on Pelham near Van Born !. Any idea whose house that was ?
     
  17. BillyShope
    Joined: Nov 15, 2007
    Posts: 131

    BillyShope
    Member

    "Leaning tower of power." I like that! I hope you have been able to locate a Hyperpack intake manifold. The Offy 4bbl manifold works pretty well, but the Hyperpack is much better. A few decades ago, I had a '60 Valiant with the 225 and the Offy manifold. Pete McNichol was the Ramcharger expert on that engine. A few years ago, he sent me a poster with all that he had done with that engine. (Regularly spun it at 10K.) I've forgotten how many NHRA records he held.
     
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  18. BillyShope
    Joined: Nov 15, 2007
    Posts: 131

    BillyShope
    Member

    At my age, I'm very fuzzy on geography. I have trouble remembering my street address. I remember Troy Simonson (another Ramcharger from Iowa) and I lived in Clawson. Yes, I remember. It was 238 Chippewa in Clawson. We carpooled with Maurie Leising, another Ramcharger who now lives just a few miles away in Florida.
     
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  19. BillyShope
    Joined: Nov 15, 2007
    Posts: 131

    BillyShope
    Member

    Not that I know. I'm 82 and I was the "kid."
     
  20. I have a '64 Savoy with a 225 and a push-button Torqueflite. I had an auto tech instructor years ago that would refer to that combination as a "Chinese six with a typewriter".
    :p
     
  21. thebearded1!
    Joined: Apr 27, 2018
    Posts: 167

    thebearded1!
    Member
    from Maryland

    Haven't found a Hyperpack intake yet but I'm definitely looking. 10k rpms thats pretty crazy for a slant six! I bet that car was a blast to drive. I'm definitely going to split the exhaust and group cylinders 1-3 and 4-6 and run dual exhaust. I've read that helps a lot on these engines.
     
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  22. frank spittle
    Joined: Jan 29, 2009
    Posts: 1,600

    frank spittle
    Member

    I have always wanted a hot-rod slant 6 powered Valiant or Lancer. I loved the performance and sound they had at the drag strips back in the day. Your roadster will get a lot of attention. And thanks for your kind comments. I remember that day well too.
     
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  23. thebearded1!
    Joined: Apr 27, 2018
    Posts: 167

    thebearded1!
    Member
    from Maryland

    Yea i'm hoping to make some progress on the car this winter. I rarely see slant 6's at shows and never in a hot rod so i'm excited to be different. I will post some pics and videos this spring!
     
  24. BillyShope
    Joined: Nov 15, 2007
    Posts: 131

    BillyShope
    Member

    I've just finished an Internet search on the early Ramchargers and all I can say is, "Wow." What a bunch of inaccuracies! I can only assume that some latecomers got that first "High and Mighty" mixed up with some later cars. First, the car that set the best C/A speed at the '59 Nationals had a totally stock camshaft. It was the C300D camshaft and there were many of them on the street. It wasn't until after the Nationals that a custom roller was installed. And, it was the best C/A speed at that meet. It was NOT a new record speed. It was supposed to have a 12.5:1 compression ratio, but either Jahns or the Ramcharger who gave them the information screwed up and it was only about 10.5:1. So, the car did all right, considering it had a stock cam and a relatively low compression ratio. The manifolding...for the most part...made the difference.
     
  25. alphabet soup
    Joined: Jan 8, 2011
    Posts: 1,283

    alphabet soup
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    A couple more questions...among Chrysler drag racers, it's been said that the '62 Plymouth sedan is the lightest "B" body. But what car, other than the Super Bird type, is more aerodynamic? And is there one that has a better weight bias?? Looking to make my '40 more of a street car. And putting the drive train in another body just for drag racing.
     
    Last edited: Oct 1, 2018
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  26. BillyShope
    Joined: Nov 15, 2007
    Posts: 131

    BillyShope
    Member

    When you start talking aerodynamics, things get fuzzy in a hurry. For instance, Chrysler feared the aerodynamics of the '60 Falcon before the race at Daytona. After the race, tests showed that the '60 Valiant had less aero drag than the Falcon! At least, that's what I heard. As for balance, many drag cars are woefully "unbalanced." A well balanced drag car should just "barely" lift the fronts on launch. These wild wheelstands are ridiculous and only show that the car is not set up for the drag strip.
     
  27. ................I agree completely, Billy, but they sure are crowd- pleasers.:D;)
     
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  28. YES...….I am 85 and went to high school with one. He is a member of the HAMB but makes no postings, he just reads the forum here...I'll not reveal his name..He can do that if he chooses...
    we do emails for staying in touch or one of the large cacklefest.like Bowling Green..

     
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  29. BillyShope
    Joined: Nov 15, 2007
    Posts: 131

    BillyShope
    Member

    Yes, there are still some of us around. I've emailed one and tried to get him to post. Believe it or not, there are some old timers who'll have nothing to do with the past. I rather enjoy it, but not everyone does. I was just thinking, for instance, how I'd get excited when a girl would slide into her study hall seat (when I was a sophomore in high school) and her skirt would rise almost to her knee. Of course, I could see the same girl in shorts during her P.E. class, but, for some reason, that wasn't the same thing.
     
  30. BillyShope
    Joined: Nov 15, 2007
    Posts: 131

    BillyShope
    Member

    I can't remember if I gave you this link or not. It's an earlier history I did.
     
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