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Street Legal Streamliners?

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by 60 Plymouth, May 3, 2012.

  1. 60 Plymouth
    Joined: Feb 8, 2011
    Posts: 138

    60 Plymouth
    Member
    from UK

    I figured a lot of rodders who build their cars take a whole lot of inspiration from the boys who first started taking fenders off Model As and tearing down the salt in the late forties. There’s a whole bunch of 40s/50s style 32s, 34s and As, and I think there are even a few belly tankers with license plates on the road. I love the aircraft like quality that many of these early land speed racers had, like Schneider trophy seaplanes for the salt.

    So has anybody gone the next step and built a road legal streamliner? There’s so much inspiration, and such a wide variety of shapes and styles with tons of flexibility, that I can’t possibly be the first one to think of it. Yet I’ve not seen anything like it on the HAMB – so why not?

    Any of you ever thought about it? Any of you ever done it?!

    Here's a thing I've been working on. I wanted two seats and to be able to put it on a Triumph Herald chassis - hence the 92" wheelbase and squat looks. I reckon with a longer wheelbase you could make a real nice looking machine.
    [​IMG]
     
  2. patrick english
    Joined: Feb 15, 2008
    Posts: 808

    patrick english
    Member
    from La puente

    that would be cool to see a belly tank on the road..
     
  3. 60 Plymouth
    Joined: Feb 8, 2011
    Posts: 138

    60 Plymouth
    Member
    from UK

    The trouble with tanks is I think they look beautiful when they're in racing trim. By the time you got headlights and tail lights and turn signals and wing mirrors stuck to them (and fenders in some countries) they loose a bit of that clean speed look. Also a lot of places don't let you use lexan windshields, you have to use auto windshields, which are generally flat and I don't think they'd look right without that blown bubble.

    Here's a few of the better streetable ones here (never knew that second one was a two seater - training tank?!)

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    So these do exist, though I reckon if I wanted to make a tank for the road I'd try and make pop-up/retractable headlights.

    What I want to see is some road going versions of these:

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]


    [​IMG]

    These are some of my inspirations. I like the lexan engine cover on the MG EX135.
     
    Last edited: May 3, 2012
  4. RichFox
    Joined: Dec 3, 2006
    Posts: 9,821

    RichFox
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    If you look at many sports racers they were streamliners with two seats and headlites. If you built such a car it would end up looking like a sports car. And they are called "Tanks" not tankers. Tankers bring gas to the station.
     
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  5. Ryan
    Joined: Jan 2, 1995
    Posts: 18,761

    Ryan
    ADMINISTRATOR
    from Austin, TX
    Staff Member

    Those street legal belly tanks are nothing more than art cars. I think they are ridiculous novelties. Not my thing.

    This, however, is pretty cool:

    http://www.jalopyjournal.com/?p=1591
     
  6. Skeezix
    Joined: Jan 10, 2007
    Posts: 846

    Skeezix
    Member
    from SoCal

    I just posted these the other day street streamliners from the past are amazing
     

    Attached Files:

    chriseakin likes this.
  7. 60 Plymouth
    Joined: Feb 8, 2011
    Posts: 138

    60 Plymouth
    Member
    from UK

    Hi all,

    Original post corrected, my apologies.

    I guess a lot of the fifties racing cars like the Lotus IX, Elvas, Lolas etc looked a bit like bobbed tail streamliners. I quite like the long-tail teardrop aerodynamics of a land speed racer though.
    I see what you mean - once the cockpit gets any bigger than the bare minimum it starts to look quite different.

    Hi Ryan - I agree on the streetable belly tank, much as I love their shape by the time they're built for the street they are compromised, and that says nothing of how I'd feel about trying to drive one on the road in traffic.

    I've seen the Buick special a few times. I think it looks fantastic (from the back especially - I might do somthing different with the front). But the chances of me making somthing like that are quite remote - you'll notice my inspirations have considerably fewer curves! Here are two fromthe swoopy thread that sort of fit the bill:
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    Waaaaaay over my compound-curve quota though! This Alpha has similar proportions to some rear engine LSRs:

    [​IMG]

    Fewer curves too.
     
    Last edited: May 3, 2012
  8. I've been thinking about building an aerodynamic car for highway MPG.

    I like your drawing.
     
  9. 60 Plymouth
    Joined: Feb 8, 2011
    Posts: 138

    60 Plymouth
    Member
    from UK

    Highway mpg is a big thing for me - much as I love driving my Plymouth I can't afford to run it on a 100 mile round trip every day at $9 a gallon. And since 3 hours a day is a big part of sombody's life to spend in a car, I'd like to do it in somthing interesting.

    No reason I can't use some techniques that rodders use to go fast to make somthing go a little more economically.

    I'd be looking at an aluminium body (I HATE working with fibreglass). Instead of welding I'd rivet it together. Get the polishing mop on it and it should look pretty sweet.
     
  10. mart3406
    Joined: May 31, 2009
    Posts: 3,055

    mart3406
    Member
    from Canada

    Maybe not the type of pure,
    purpose-built 'streamliner' you
    have in mind, but what about
    building a 'Bonneville-styled' '53
    Studebaker coupe?? You could
    slam it, chop the top, clean up
    the nose a bit, remove or fare-in
    the bumpers and run steel wheels
    with skinnies and Moon-style
    spun-aluminum full wheel disks.
    etc. etc., like the LSR guys do - and
    you could end up with something
    that would be both authentic looking
    and still street-legal and drivable -
    and also, be extremely slick, both
    aerodynamically and esthetically
    too!

    Mart3406
    ===========
     
  11. THE FRENCHTOWN FLYER
    Joined: Jun 6, 2007
    Posts: 2,789

    THE FRENCHTOWN FLYER
    Member
    from FRENCHTOWN

    X2 on the '53 Studie idea.
     
  12. metalshapes
    Joined: Nov 18, 2002
    Posts: 10,734

    metalshapes
    Tech Editor

    Not all of these were street driven, but most could have been...

    cd_panhard_lm_1964_b_small1.jpg

    1937%20le%20mans%2024hr%20-%20jean-pierre%20wimille%20(bugatti%20t57s%20'tank').jpg

    bugattitype57g1937res.jpg

    1948vwpetermaxmullerarsm2.jpg

    1948vwpetermaxmullerzw3.jpg

    Melkus-Veritas_1952.jpg

    COOPER DISCO VOLANTE 1954 002.jpg

    n826713559_888328_6897.jpg

    1f35ba8cd291a8451f2fd8b44abef9a820100212203610.jpg

    1138371786939315.jpeg

    photo01.jpg

    cupula7xn.jpg

    Arnott%20Streamliner.jpg

    Scansione0052.jpg

    Bisiluro%2520%271955%2520%284%29.jpg
     
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  13. metalshapes
    Joined: Nov 18, 2002
    Posts: 10,734

    metalshapes
    Tech Editor

  14. Any info on this one?
     

    Attached Files:

  15. metalshapes
    Joined: Nov 18, 2002
    Posts: 10,734

    metalshapes
    Tech Editor

    Alfa Romeo 163

    1940alfa16316c3000sincotg1.jpg

    1941alfaromeo163.jpg

    23711d1141267166-alfa-romeo-type-163-alfa_romeo_163.jpg
     
  16. need louvers ?
    Joined: Nov 20, 2008
    Posts: 12,912

    need louvers ?
    Member

    Kinda suprised that no one has mentioned Seret's build here on the H.A.M.B.
     
  17. JeffreyJames
    Joined: Jun 13, 2007
    Posts: 16,597

    JeffreyJames
    Member
    from SUGAR CITY

    This I could drive!
    [​IMG]
     
  18. THE FRENCHTOWN FLYER
    Joined: Jun 6, 2007
    Posts: 2,789

    THE FRENCHTOWN FLYER
    Member
    from FRENCHTOWN

    That is true, but the last time I looked Formula 1 and Top Fuelers had horrible drag coefficients.

    But even standing still, a Stude, a T/Fer, and an F1 car all look scary fast and swoopy cool.
     
  19. 60 Plymouth
    Joined: Feb 8, 2011
    Posts: 138

    60 Plymouth
    Member
    from UK

    Thanks for the insirational stuff guys.

    The stude is about the best HAMB friendly production car in the States as far as aerodynamics is concerned - the Carrera Panamericana Studes always lead the pack. Aerodynamics and low weight I think go a long way towards this.

    Really like that Alfa 163, looks a lot like the Auto Union Coupe that never got built.

    I'm still carving away at my drawing:
    [​IMG]

    I've put the cockpit back a little and altered the front. What I'd really like to do is get it solid-modelled and run some CFD on it, it's the little tweaks, especially around the rear, that could make big differences to how streamlined this thing is.

    For headlights, I reckon I can use some sealed beams hidden behind flush-fitting clear covers screwed into the body work. The shapes are all pretty simple to hand form, the most difficult being the fender 'pods' covering the top of the front wheels. They're not really necessary but without them the car is a bit featureless. I think it'd look a lot like MGs EX135 and EX179 but with the two person cockpit stuck on top.

    There are a few reverse curves and a few compound curves but because everything is rivetted together (and to a frame) I think I can tackle them individually without screwing up a massive single panel.
     
  20. HealeyRick
    Joined: May 5, 2009
    Posts: 549

    HealeyRick
    Member
    from Mass.

    You could probably drive the Austin-Healey streamliners on the street, but parallel parking would be a bitch:

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
  21. 60 Plymouth
    Joined: Feb 8, 2011
    Posts: 138

    60 Plymouth
    Member
    from UK

    The thing with F1 cars is they're not made to go fast. They're made to go fast round corners. All those downforce aids add masses of drag to them, but taking a corner at high speed wins more races than reaching a higher top speed on the straights. Those big fat wheels don't help the aero much either. Same thing with the wing on a top fueler, but I reckon that might be more efficient than an F1 wing.
     
  22. 60 Plymouth
    Joined: Feb 8, 2011
    Posts: 138

    60 Plymouth
    Member
    from UK

    I love that Healey, about the same wheelbase as the chassis I'd like to use too. I don't think parallel parking would be that bad, if I can get my 60 Plymouth into a British sized parking space then I can do it with those Austins!
     
  23. HealeyRick
    Joined: May 5, 2009
    Posts: 549

    HealeyRick
    Member
    from Mass.

    The top one is a recreation. Here's the story: http://www.austinhealey.com.au/rebirth.html
     
  24. Rusty O'Toole
    Joined: Sep 17, 2006
    Posts: 8,994

    Rusty O'Toole
    Member

    How about a Jag XKE with a diesel engine? Not sure if I am kidding or not. But it would work.

    Something like a TDI VW engine should give you a top speed of 100 MPH and 40+ MPG.
     
  25. I was chatting to a pal about something like this. In the end we figured using a glass Porsche 356 coupe body on a Beetle pan and a diesel Smart car motor, while keeping everything as light as possible would make an excellent and very economical commuter car. The diesel Smart gets an alleged 70 to the gallon, so with better weight and aero, you should beat that. The early 356 went pretty well considering how little power it had available.

    I like the idea of a Herald chassis though. How about making a "one sided" roof and fitting a hard tonneau over the other side. Removeable for carrying passengers or for sunny days. I think light weight will be more help to gain economy than aerodynamics in real world street driving. A small diesel engine would most likely be the best thing too. Depends how madly deep into it you want to getinto it I suppose! Ending up with a cool car is probably more important than all out economy, or?
     
  26. metalshapes
    Joined: Nov 18, 2002
    Posts: 10,734

    metalshapes
    Tech Editor

    A discussion like this is not complete without Frank Costin's designs.

    4539137071.jpg

    grandcentralgb-1.jpg

    11f5ceb0.jpg

    LeMans85.jpg

    unknown20a.jpg

    cosnat6ga.jpg

    And this one, which is not by costin, but looks a it like it could have been one.

    tryane-ii.jpg
     
    chriseakin likes this.
  27. They may get GPM instead of MPG, though.
     

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