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History The Wisconsin Special

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by miller91, May 21, 2009.

  1. miller91
    Joined: Dec 7, 2008
    Posts: 542

    miller91
    Member

    3 Miles a Minute in 1922! Sig kicked ass with this on the Daytona sands...
     
  2. That is cool as hell!!:cool:
     
  3. alsancle
    Joined: Nov 30, 2005
    Posts: 1,562

    alsancle
    Member

    This car sold for not much, 150k? a few years ago at auction because people there did not know what it was.
     
  4. hugh m
    Joined: Jul 18, 2007
    Posts: 2,143

    hugh m
    Member
    from ct.

    I really think alot of the folks at these auctions played soccer in school, and only recently became gearheads.But they would pay 150 k for a Mustang or what ever, just because the yuppies at least know what it is. (Not to offend any soccer players out there.)
     

  5. whatever
    Joined: Oct 27, 2006
    Posts: 116

    whatever
    Member

    i no isnt that funny
     
  6. miller91
    Joined: Dec 7, 2008
    Posts: 542

    miller91
    Member

    another pic...pretty narrow!
     
  7. 327-365hp
    Joined: Feb 5, 2006
    Posts: 5,418

    327-365hp
    Member
    from Mass

    I never heard of Sig. Pretty cool story. This is from Wikipedia

    Sigurd Olson “Sig” Haugdahl (January 10, 1891 in Norway – February 4, 1970) was an IMCA champion and an early promoter of stock car racing in the United States. Haugdahl moved to the United States in 1910 and lived in Albert Lea, Minnesota.

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    [edit] Racing career

    Haughdahl's U.S. racing career in 1912, when he drove a specially equipped Indian Motorcycle in ice races in Minnesota. He began dirt track racing in 1918. He became the IMCA champion six years in a row, between 1927 and 1932.<SUP class=reference id=cite_ref-historicracing_0-0>[1]</SUP> He built the Wisconsin Special to unseat USAC champion Tommy Milton. The car was named after its 836 cubic inch Wisconsin Airplane 6-cylinder motor, which was directly connected to the rear wheels. The car was 192 inches (4,900 mm) long, 20 inches (510 mm) wide, and had 250 horsepower (190 kW). The speed would first be exceeded after over ten years.

    [edit] World speed record

    [​IMG]
    Sig Haugdahl shaking hands with Mayor Guy S. Bailey of Daytona Beach, in 1922


    Haugdahl is reported to have set a world land speed record of 180 miles per hour in his Wisconsin Special car at the Daytona Beach Road Course on April 7, 1922.<SUP class=reference id=cite_ref-sprintguy_1-0>[2]</SUP> A world record was not awarded, however, because the run was not timed by the American Automobile Association and as such could not be verified.<SUP class=reference id=cite_ref-historicracing_0-1>[1]</SUP> It is considered by some that the record speed was claimed by IMCA for the promotional benefits that it would offer.<SUP class=reference id=cite_ref-historicracing_0-2>[1]</SUP> If true, this record would have represented a record speed 50 mph (80 km/h) faster than the official record, set by a car with a quarter less power than the current holder, five years before the official record reached this level.

    [edit] Daytona Beach Road Course

    World land speed record attempts moved from Daytona to the more consistent surface at the Bonneville Salt Flats with Campbell's Blue Bird in 1935.
    Not wishing to lose the valuable visitor trade, Daytona Beach officials asked local racer Haugdahl to organize and promote an automobile race along the 3.2-mile (5.1 km) course. Haugdahl is credited for designing the track. The city posted at $5,000 purse. The ticket-takers arrived at the event to find thousands of fans already at the track. The sandy turns became virtually impassable, and the event was stopped after 75 of 78 laps. The city has not promoted an event since.
    Haugdahl talked with another local driver named William France Sr., and they talked the Daytona Beach Elks Club to host another event in 1937. The event was more successful, but still lost money. Haugdahl didn't promote any more events. France used the experience to found NASCAR
     
  8. miller91
    Joined: Dec 7, 2008
    Posts: 542

    miller91
    Member

    awesome post 327-365hp, I recently discovered Sig myself and he seems to be an underappreciated pioneer.
     
  9. jimdillon
    Joined: Dec 6, 2005
    Posts: 3,122

    jimdillon
    Member

    Sig Haugdahl was a pretty interesting guy and I really appreciate his efforts in trying to unseat Milton. In the above article they refer to his 180 mph being 50 mph faster than the older official record set five years prior. Apparently these clowns that gave records their worthless blessing did not recognize DePalma's 149 +mph at Daytona in 1919?

    Also I always have been fascinated with Sig's rocket car but have read little on the car, other than it was a streched Miller.

    Here is a pic of Sig's record setting engine (to hell with the clowns in the AAA), at a Miller Meet a few years ago.-Jim

    [​IMG]
     
  10. The37Kid
    Joined: Apr 30, 2004
    Posts: 28,284

    The37Kid
    Member


    Ever notice the world started going in the toilet just about the same time soccer arrived here?...........Meanwhile back to the Wisconsin Special, wasn't it in the Zimmerman collection in Pennyslvania back in the early 1970's?
     
  11. 327-365hp
    Joined: Feb 5, 2006
    Posts: 5,418

    327-365hp
    Member
    from Mass

  12. greaser57
    Joined: Feb 7, 2009
    Posts: 252

    greaser57
    Member
    from minnesota

    Sig was a mighty fast gearhead, & from Mn..................Rich
     
  13. Buz
    Joined: May 18, 2007
    Posts: 134

    Buz
    Member

    It's a wonder those wheels and tires held together at that speed.
     
  14. miller91
    Joined: Dec 7, 2008
    Posts: 542

    miller91
    Member

    Here's some Sig in other racers, he was a wildman!
     
  15. [​IMG]
    more pictures at http://www.conceptcarz.com/vehicle/z15201/1922-Wisconsin-Special.aspx




    "I had the unique opportunity to visit the warehouse where Sig Haugdahl's 1922 Wisconsin Special resides, the other day!

    Woohoo! What a car that is! I was with a couple of friends who were measuring and photographing this historic race car for the purpose of doing a scratchbuilt 1:12 scale model of it for the current owner (who can easily afford the extreme cost of a totally scratchbuilt scale model).

    The car resides in Mishawaka, Indiana (just east of South Bend--actually just across the street), and is remarkable in that it appears to be not only completely original with just two exceptions: A magneto change is evident, probably because apparently Wisconsin engines built just three of the engine installed in this car, and apparently the race car's engine is the only one left. The engine is an 836cid straight six, SOHC, with dual ignition off one magneto/distributor. The cylinders are cast in pairs, in aluminum (in fact, the entire engine appears to be aluminum, although probably with cast-iron cylinder liners. The other change made to the car somewhere in its history was the addition of an electric starter, necessitating the fabricating of an exposed ring gear around the exposed flywheel.

    Heaven only knows what chassis was used, but it appears to have been built from a pre-1920 touring car chassis, probably one of the larger makes, but little exists, as I understand it, as to the origin of the chassis. A lot of hand fabrication is evident, not to mention the relatively low budget under which it seems to have been built. There is a lot of improvisation on the car, mostly doing with attempts at streamlining it: The front axle is faired in over the channel section with carved wooden blocks held in place with yards of tape, the space between the body sides and the top of the frame rails is filled with shaped and smoothly sanded wood planking. The leading ends of the steering drag link and other control rods have tapered cones welded to them.

    I assume that the Wisconsin Special was in attendance at Goodwood this summer, given the Goodwood Festival of Speed 2004 decals on the sides of the cowling. If you saw it there, you might have wondered at the rough bodywork evident. Apparently, Haugdahl was very much a backyard (or in the barn) mechanic, in rural Minnesota, operating without much money, so the body, while very nicely shaped, is full of all sorts of hammer "dings", but from the inside out, indicating that there was no money to have the tail, cowling and nose professionally made. Likewise, the body panels are all sheet steel, not aluminum, and no attempt was made to weld anything beyond the seams down the middle of the tail. All body panels are mounted with flat-head slotted screws as well. Similar hammer marks (again from the inside out) are all over the top and sides of the nose, and of course the nose itself shows a good bit of debris damage. Wheels are 20" Rudge-Whitworth wires.

    Pictures of the car at Daytona Beach show the cockpit sides to be high, so that only the driver's head and tops of his shoulders would have been exposed to the slipstream, although as the car stands today, the cockpit sides are cut down to allow for the extreme steering action needed on dirt tracks.

    I didn't get to hear it run, but I understand that it's a very raucous sounding car, what with 6 four-inch-diameter exhaust stacks that come out perhaps 3 or 4 inches beyond the hood side.

    Art" <!--IBF.ATTACHMENT_1805952-->
    <!-- THE POST -->
    http://forums.autosport.com/index.php?showtopic=73465&mode=threaded&pid=1807798



    Check out the Rocket Car http://winfield.50megs.com/JetCar.htm

    pioneers...
     
  16. Hi, I see the clip from Wiki, and of course it's wrong. Grandpa came to the US via Ellis Island and settled in St. Peter, Mn and then moved to Albert Lea Mn. Actually he worked for the Albert Lea gas company and he was the person who first invented the " coleman" lantern but didn't know anything about pattens..so the rest is history.

    Sig's Granddaughter
     
  17. The middle pic you have here is Sig in his Miller in 1924. Los Angeles, Ca. He loved to rsce at Ascot speedway
     
  18. The # 6 was his Essex in 1918.
     
  19. guffey
    Joined: Mar 23, 2008
    Posts: 881

    guffey



    If I remember it was a Bonham and Butterfield sale at Hersey 10 or maybe 12 years ago. I remember thinking it was an attractive price when they hammered it sold but I couldn't rub 2 100 dollar bills together. Still have trouble doing that from time to time. I found out years later the late Tom Mittler was the buyer that night.
     
  20. miller91
    Joined: Dec 7, 2008
    Posts: 542

    miller91
    Member

    I am so freakin' honored that Sig's granddaughter caught on to this thread....thanks for identifying the cars in the photos! Post some more if you have them!
     
  21. The37Kid
    Joined: Apr 30, 2004
    Posts: 28,284

    The37Kid
    Member

    Miller91, good to have you back, hope you have more stuff to post in 2012. Happy New Year! Bob
     
  22. It is great to have you back, Miller91!

    Sig's Granddaughter- great to have you here as well! Not to steal the thread, but I am looking for more pics of the Fronty that your grandfather drove for Mabel Cody:

    [​IMG]

    Any help would be greatly appreciated!!!

    Thanks, Bill
     
  23. tomjac
    Joined: Jul 10, 2008
    Posts: 97

    tomjac
    Member

    Maybe I missed it in the other posts, but who owns and where is the Wisconsin Special now?
     
  24. jimdillon
    Joined: Dec 6, 2005
    Posts: 3,122

    jimdillon
    Member

    Tomjac, The last owner I have on the car was a Tom Mittler. It was owned prior by Dave Uihlein I believe. I thought Mittler may be the owner that lives in northern Indiana.

    There has for years been claims that this car never achieved 180 although I have never researched the claiims one way or another. Trying to track down some of the claims one way or another with AAA records is not an exact science and may stir up some emotions.

    Whatever the claims I still like the car and he probably did put his foot in it.-Jim
     
  25. miller91
    Joined: Dec 7, 2008
    Posts: 542

    miller91
    Member

    Hey Guys, I'm off the HAMB after the attitude from the "boss" about my "O/T", but i really appreciate all the great times and posts, I check in here and there. You are all doing a great job with the Golden Age stuff...keep it up! I love the American hot rod tradition, and it is important to make the historical connections, (including the European influences) that formed the DNA of these homegrown efforts. There is a whole new generation of rodder's that could really benefit from all this incredible info. As for my projects, I am deep into a scratch design and (hopefully) build of a very Italian-inspired supercharged Alfa 4 speedster, but I did run into my old '37 Packard 3 speed (had it behind a quad 97 Weiand equipped '51 Hemi once)...maybe I'll dream up an old timey build that will get me back on the HAMB. Happy 2012 to you all!
     
  26. tomjac
    Joined: Jul 10, 2008
    Posts: 97

    tomjac
    Member

    Does anyone have more specific info on Sig's time in Albert Lea? What machine shop he worked at? Vehicles he drove during his time in A. L.? How long did he live in A.L.? Pic's of cars/vehicles he drove while living in A. L. etc?
     
  27. pontlemsprt
    Joined: Jun 5, 2010
    Posts: 1

    pontlemsprt
    Member

  28. tomjac
    Joined: Jul 10, 2008
    Posts: 97

    tomjac
    Member

    Last edited: Feb 13, 2012
  29. To all and Tomjac,

    I have not been on in a while because I was finishing my graduate degree. Actually I am going to Daytona in two weeks and meeting up with my dad Sigurd Haugdahl ( Sig's son) who is going to be 86 this year and still going strong. My dad is going to be interviewed for an up coming documentary that will focus on early stock car/beach racing. I am so excited and this is so cool that the documentary wants to focus on the " old guys" who paved the road for the current racers. When I find out details I will post.
    I did write a letter to NASCAR and the IMCA in Talladega to get Sig inducted into the Hall of Fame. He did have an awsome career and accomplished way more than people even know or are aware of. In fact we have documentation that if Sig never designed and layed out the 3.2 mile track on Daytona beach and held the inagural run on March 8, 1936 NASCAR would have never been born. " Sig proposed a race course that was not only unusal in concept and design but would someday affect the entire future of auto and motorcycle racing in America and keep Daytona Beach in the spotlight as speed capital of the world" ( Tuthill, 2002).
    I am actually writing a biographical memoir about grandpa and going to see my dad to make sure I get all of the dates and facts straight. You could not believe how many articles and even books that have wrong information in them about grandpa and my book will set the record straight.
    Thanks for such kind words.

    Linda Haugdahl
     
  30. WOW, I would love to buy that newspaper, is that possible?

    Linda
     

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