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Technical The History Of Bell Auto

Discussion in 'Traditional Hot Rods' started by Ryan, May 12, 2010.

  1. Great history lesson
    Cheers oggie
     
  2. Bigcheese327
    Joined: Sep 16, 2001
    Posts: 6,691

    Bigcheese327
    Member

    One thing I've wondered: Did Bell Auto give us Bell Helmets? Or is that merely a coincidence.

    -Dave
     
  3. KUZTOM
    Joined: May 6, 2008
    Posts: 909

    KUZTOM
    Member

    post 25 gives the deal on the Helmets;)
     
    kidcampbell71 likes this.
  4. KUZTOM
    Joined: May 6, 2008
    Posts: 909

    KUZTOM
    Member

    Our Burt Munroe always wore the BELL Brand
     

    Attached Files:

    kidcampbell71 likes this.

  5. You should read the thread and then ask your questions
    Lars
     
  6. KUZTOM
    Joined: May 6, 2008
    Posts: 909

    KUZTOM
    Member

  7. denis4x4
    Joined: Apr 23, 2005
    Posts: 3,782

    denis4x4
    ALLIANCE MEMBER
    from Colorado

    Here's my original CRAGAR on a B block with a BENDIX-STROMBERG intake from 1931. I worked with Art Bagnall at the old VAN, PICKUP & OFFROAD trade magazine.
     

    Attached Files:

    kidcampbell71 likes this.
  8. When I was racing motorcycles in the 70's and 80's that was the ONLY brand of helmet to buy! Nothing else had the reputation of a Bell helmet. I still have my Bell Racing jacket but the helmet is long gone!
    <table style="width:auto;"><tr><td>[​IMG]</td></tr><tr><td style="font-family:arial,sans-serif; font-size:11px; text-align:right">From Bell Racing Jacket</td></tr></table>
    <table style="width:auto;"><tr><td>[​IMG]</td></tr><tr><td style="font-family:arial,sans-serif; font-size:11px; text-align:right">From Bell Racing Jacket</td></tr></table>
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Jun 1, 2014
  9. Bigcheese327
    Joined: Sep 16, 2001
    Posts: 6,691

    Bigcheese327
    Member

    Oops. :eek: Sorry, I sorta skimmed once we got into paragraph form and overlooked those parts. It's tough to read a huge cut-and-paste tome on an iPhone screen.

    Plus, for some reason once dates after 1964 come up, I find it harder to pay attention.

    -Dave
     
  10. Dan Glover
    Joined: Nov 28, 2009
    Posts: 142

    Dan Glover
    Member

    I worked for Bell Auto and it was on Gage Ave. corner of Orchard ave.
     
    kidcampbell71 and Cyclone Kevin like this.
  11. Different building. Bell Auto Parts was on Gage Ave. Western Auto used to be a slotcar place.
     
  12. I remember you telling me about working with my good friends dad,Dick LeNarz. My other friend Craig Wise,who's new here to the HAMB,CW's40pu,had an older brother who hung out with Richter. His name was Gary Wise. He worked for Mooneyham Blowers for many years. Their dad,Fred Wise was also known around the Hotrod circles back then. Maybe he'll see this and add to the stories...
     
  13. Choptop
    Joined: Jun 19, 2001
    Posts: 3,303

    Choptop
    Member

    ChopPop used to hang out there. I think Kenny Parks (wally's brother) used to manage the store for a while. I forget what time period, but can find out.
     
  14. A little trivia in that pic. The '29 AV-8 (far right) is Wally Parks' car.

    So, that would make sense why his car (Wally's) is parked out front.
     
  15. dlcampbe
    Joined: Jul 8, 2012
    Posts: 1

    dlcampbe
    Member

    I worked for Bell Auto in '57-'58, then the Army. I'm still trying to remember what went on in that shop at lunchtime, like getting hit in the head with a thrown tomato...

    Duncan
     
  16. Gareth
    Joined: Jun 18, 2008
    Posts: 86

    Gareth
    Member
    from San Diego

    Digging up an old thread here I know, but this history is just too cool. I’ve been fortunate to have some great conversations with people close to the Bell Auto legacy in recent years and here’s how it happened.
    So one day I drive my 34 pickup to work and park in the front lot. A new work colleague walks over and asks if that car is mine. I say yes and he starts asking questions. As sometimes happens, he says ‘my grandfather was big into Hotrods just like that and racing back in the day’. I’m thinking he probably had a 78 Chevy truck or a 90’s built fiberglass 34 with graphics or something. We talk some more and then he says his grandfather took midget racing down to Australia and he was part of the group of guys that originally started SEMA. My ears pricked up. Then he asks ‘have you heard of Bell Auto parts or Cragar?’ Ahhh, sure I’ve heard of them. ‘Well, that was my grandfather’. So here I am talking with Eric Richter, grandson of Roy Richter. Eric and I became friends and he often shares stories and photos from his childhood and his dads.
    Eric and I still work together and one day we are going to sit down and go through the boxes of photos, books, magazines and memorabilia he got from his grandfather, Roy.


    Sent from my iPhone using H.A.M.B.
     
  17. What great history! Thanks for the education!
     
  18. Fordors
    Joined: Sep 22, 2016
    Posts: 3,849

    Fordors
    Member

    Gartz was a grandson of Richard Teller Crane, RT was the founder of Crane Co. an early plumbing manufacturer.
    Crane became one of the largest suppliers in that field and Richard Crane Gartz led the life of a playboy/ amateur sportsman. He hung around with racers, pilots, and fast women and his friends called him Craney.
    When Fengler wanted to get the rights to the Miller-Schofield head Craney was the money man, and as mentioned earlier that was how the Cragar name came about.
    If you happen to use a urinal with the Crane Co. logo on it now you know there is a bizarre connection between
    racing equipment and relieving yourself. :eek:
     
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  19. jimmy six
    Joined: Mar 21, 2006
    Posts: 9,982

    jimmy six
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    The display Ford V8 flathead which sat in the window for many years is now in a garage in Orange County. It has no changed a bit and is still on the original stand. Sorry no photo as the China Virus has closed up my friends to visitors.
     
    elgringo71 likes this.
  20. 41 GMC K-18
    Joined: Jun 27, 2019
    Posts: 1,824

    41 GMC K-18
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

  21. bowie
    Joined: Jul 27, 2011
    Posts: 2,777

    bowie
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    An original version of the Cragar SS wheel and my good ol Bell helmet: 8341D9D7-816A-446F-B8EE-2A66C01A14E0.jpeg 73A17025-965E-4EE6-9BD9-96DB9ABFF011.jpeg
     

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