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History The Timing Tag Collection Of Fran Hernandez

Discussion in 'Traditional Hot Rods' started by Ryan, Oct 12, 2016.

  1. Ryan
    Joined: Jan 2, 1995
    Posts: 19,768

    Ryan
    ADMINISTRATOR
    Staff Member

    Ryan submitted a new blog post:

    The Timing Tag Collection Of Fran Hernandez

    [​IMG]

    Continue reading the Original Blog Post
     
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  2. 504640
    Joined: Aug 8, 2011
    Posts: 533

    504640
    Member

    Sharon Baker was a fast chick who liked to run with the boys! Was Russetta her only choice, running a sedan?
     
  3. Tim
    Joined: Mar 2, 2001
    Posts: 12,694

    Tim
    Member
    from KCMO

    Dang! Very cool
     
  4. Rolleiflex
    Joined: Oct 25, 2007
    Posts: 1,059

    Rolleiflex
    Member

    It's kind of a who's who of 1949 racing. Very Nice!!
     
    lothiandon1940 likes this.

  5. Timing Tags,,that little something that's says -'This is how fast I went!"
    I have a tag sitting on my desk for a pass I made in our roadster, not very fast 139.05.
    But it was how I got it.
    It was a windy 11/15/2015 meet, the dust would cloud the course causing delays.
    I was in the car and the starter asked if I wanted to make a pass, it was dusty mid course but should clear at the finish.
    Of course I said yes.
    Fired the motor for the warm up
    The starter, Jill Iverson, held her hand for hold, she turned and checked the course, talked to the tower, then turned to me with the question in her eyes,,, Was I ready?
    I nodded yes, she gave me the drop my visor motion. I dropped my visor and felt the shove of the push truck, and I was down the tract.
    25 or so miles an hour I pop the clutch and pull away from the truck right into a blinding dust storm.
    I can see nothing, but I continue powering as Jill said it clears.
    Second gear, no visuals
    Third gears, nothing and know my mind is playing with what I am trying to see.
    Still powering hoping for a break, when suddenly an orange blur fly's by my side vision, then another, then another.
    Cones,,,, pull the chute, turn off the course, hit the brakes as the return road is closer than the shut down area.
    I break through the dust, I am back from the return road.
    My heart is pounding, breathing hard, but all is quiet.
    Kennedy appears at the side of the car
    "Man we lost you,, we could hear you but you were gone,,, you did the right thing..."
    "Do you want to make another pass? We'll put you at the head of the line?"
    Of course, and I did made a 139.105 pass
    And I know that because I have a 2 X 3 black and brass plaque that says so,,,,
     
    Last edited: Oct 12, 2016
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  6. HRS
    Joined: Nov 7, 2008
    Posts: 361

    HRS
    Member

    That 3W though....
     
    504640 likes this.
  7. bubba67
    Joined: Nov 26, 2008
    Posts: 1,799

    bubba67
    Member
    from NJ


    Sharon Baker was not a chick. He was a friend and fellow Coupes Club member of Fran's and the Pierson Brothers. His son Scott is a member of this board.
     
    rpm56 and kidcampbell71 like this.
  8. woodbutcher
    Joined: Apr 25, 2012
    Posts: 3,252

    woodbutcher
    Member

    :D There`s some great history in those tags.
    Good luck.Have fun.Be safe.
    Leo
     
  9. Jive-Bomber
    Joined: Aug 21, 2001
    Posts: 3,445

    Jive-Bomber
    MODERATOR

    Can anybody shed some light on who the "Meeks" was, of Hernandez & Meeks?
     
  10. jeta12
    Joined: Oct 14, 2012
    Posts: 235

    jeta12
    Member

    Such cool History!!....Thanks for posting.
     
  11. 504640
    Joined: Aug 8, 2011
    Posts: 533

    504640
    Member

    Having experience with names that are usually applied to the opposite gender, (my Mother was named Cecil) I suspected that might be the case. But this is my first encounter of Sharon being used as a masculine name. My apologies are given, if needed. I noticed Sharon was racing a Sedan. What was it in 49? And is Scott lucky enough to retain ownership?
     
    lothiandon1940 likes this.
  12. Ryan
    Joined: Jan 2, 1995
    Posts: 19,768

    Ryan
    ADMINISTRATOR
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    Bobby Meeks... Another guy in this crew of legends... He built a lot of the record breaking flatheads in the late 40's and 50's including the flathead in the Pierson Bros. coupe, the So-Cal tank (and I assume streamliner), Vic Edelbrock's Roadster, Fran's coupe and roadster, etc...

    He was also an early Nitro innovator.
     
  13. Jive-Bomber
    Joined: Aug 21, 2001
    Posts: 3,445

    Jive-Bomber
    MODERATOR

    Thanks Ryan-- That makes sense that its the same guy that worked for Vic Edelbrock...
    https://www.hemmings.com/magazine/mus/2014/07/Bobby-Meeks/3740001.html
     
  14. Randy lives right down the street from me in Tecumseh and is also my wife's ex-husband. He has amassed an amazing collection of his dad's effects and has a website dedicated to it. The last time I saw Fran was when he attended his grandson's wedding some years ago. We talked for about an hour about the old days and my only regret is that I didn't have a tape recorder. He was suffering short term memory loss but had a remarkable recollection of the old days. RIP Mr. Hernandez.
     

    Attached Files:

  15. Ryan
    Joined: Jan 2, 1995
    Posts: 19,768

    Ryan
    ADMINISTRATOR
    Staff Member

    I'm a geek. Fully admit that... but it sort of amazes me that all of these guys were pals. I mean, this was a crew of guys that hung out together and they are all legends.

    Really, only three names are missing from the timing tags that were also part of this crew:

    Alex Xydias
    Tom Cobb
    Vic Edelbock

    If you cherish your hot rodding history like I do, it's mind blowing to think about.


    Sent from my iPhone using The H.A.M.B. mobile app
     
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  16. Ryan
    Joined: Jan 2, 1995
    Posts: 19,768

    Ryan
    ADMINISTRATOR
    Staff Member

    Oh... something else to think about... look at Bob Pierson's timing tag and compare it to Fran's Russette tag in 49. Fran's "street" coupe was only a few mphs off the famed Pierson bros. coupe. Crazy.


    Sent from my iPhone using The H.A.M.B. mobile app
     
    lothiandon1940 likes this.
  17. Love these History lessons.
     
  18. denis4x4
    Joined: Apr 23, 2005
    Posts: 3,755

    denis4x4
    ALLIANCE MEMBER
    from Colorado

    Fran did R&D work for Offenhauser and Edelbrock and ended up at Ford working on Mercury specials. He pushed a lot of work to the speed equipment companies in SoCal. Met a Ford executive on a cruise and he said that Fran was a genius when it came to drive trains.
     
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  19. belair
    Joined: Jul 10, 2006
    Posts: 8,717

    belair
    Member

    Killer coupe.
     
  20. banjorear
    Joined: Jul 30, 2004
    Posts: 3,869

    banjorear
    Member

    Simply awesome. Thank you for posting.
     
  21. 296ardun
    Joined: Feb 11, 2009
    Posts: 4,401

    296ardun
    Member

    I have a picture of it racing at Saugus in the early '50s, will try to find and post -- it was a white '40 Ford sedan, if I remember right

    [​IMG]

    I think this is the sedan
     
    Last edited: Oct 14, 2016
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  22. westendofdz
    Joined: Oct 12, 2016
    Posts: 9

    westendofdz
    Member

    Bobby Meeks (Engine Builder) and Fran Hernandez working the dyno at Edelbrock's Shop in the early 1950s. c 1950 - Dad & Bobby Meeks (3).jpg
     
  23. cool stuff there Ryan - my uncle finally gave me the go ahead to get his plates off the garage wall where they have been since he put them up there in the early sixties......they're more desired by me than his purple heart.....another cousin will get that....thinking it's going to be a real sad day when I pull them down.....
     
  24. autobilly
    Joined: May 23, 2007
    Posts: 3,094

    autobilly
    Member

    Very cool, thanks westendofdz.
     
  25. dentisaurus
    Joined: Dec 11, 2006
    Posts: 395

    dentisaurus
    Member
    from Boston

    Cool photo westendofdz, is that flat head mounted on a 2x4 wood frame for dyno testing? Blimey! Then again Morgan and MG built the chassis for their cars out of wood for years. Great history, thanks for posting.
     
  26. banjorear
    Joined: Jul 30, 2004
    Posts: 3,869

    banjorear
    Member

  27. I think they are modified 32 fender braces, that was done quite a bit back then.
    The headlight brackets on my old roadster were cut off fender braces.
    This picture was taken in 1959. myrdstr3.jpg
     
    Surfcityrocker likes this.
  28. Nobey
    Joined: May 28, 2011
    Posts: 1,207

    Nobey
    Member

    One nice coupe, not to change the subject, but do you have a photo of the dash
    in Fran's car Ryan? It is a thing of beauty.....
     
  29. westendofdz
    Joined: Oct 12, 2016
    Posts: 9

    westendofdz
    Member

    Here's a picture of that dash from my Dad's car. 32 Three Window (4) - Copy.jpg
     
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  30. westendofdz
    Joined: Oct 12, 2016
    Posts: 9

    westendofdz
    Member

    Here's a better picture of the headlight setup. 32 Three Window (7) - Copy.jpg
     
    bonesy, Nobey, embyman68 and 2 others like this.

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