The Jalopy Journal
Discussion in 'Traditional Hot Rods' started by Joshua Shaw, Jan 17, 2008.
which side is the exhaust on?
Right side. The Atlas family of motors is different than the Ecotec now becoming popular in midgets. Bigger bore, bore centers, and stroke. The Ecotec is 88 mm bore x 98 mm stroke. The Atlas motors are over 101 mm in stroke,
Offy and Miller motors can be assembled with the exhaust on either side, a handy feature not available on modern substitutes.
I'll be using a 305 ci "Faux Duesenberg" based on a Ford truck six.
I am seeking information on Kurtis Kraft midget serial number X121. This car was probably built July, 1947 about the same time that serial number 121, the Leland "Buzz" Lowe #93 V8 60 was built. I am seeking information on the car from 1947 through 1960. I have the complete history post 1960 as follows: The midget was sold to Norm Rapp in San Francisco in 1960, '61 or '62. Jack Crawford purchased the chassis from Norm in 1961 or '62. Jack Crawford built the car over the next several years with the help of George Benson. The completed dark blue #90 midget (later white and red #11) with Chevy II power was driven by Crawford and Benson indoor and outdoor mostly on the West coast between 1964 and 1968. The car appears on the cover and on pages 240, 241 and 242 of George Benson's book "George Benson the Racing Years". In 1969 Crawford returned to Binghampton, NY and campaigned the car as #45 in the Northeast and later drove for Ken Hickey. About 1970 Crawford sold the car to Ken Hickey who in turn sold it to Leigh Earnshaw. Leigh Earnshaw Jr. raced it as white #51 in ARDC and USAC using Chevy II power and Offenhauser power (this was Leigh's second white #51 midget, not to be confused with the first #51 which was Kurtis Kraft serial number 116). In 1973 the car was chanced off at the Grandview Speedway by the Checkered Flag Fan Club to raise money for the injured driver's fund. The midget was kept in storage and not raced after 1973.
Finding early information will be difficult at best, but maybe someone knows of an unaccounted for Kurtis Kraft midget that may have been sold to Norm Rapp around 1960-1962 or maybe someone remembers this particular serial number. I spoke to Norm Rapp in September of 2011 and he has no records indicating the previous owner. Any help would be greatly appreciated.
Interesting. I did not know there was a KK midget numbered X121. I'm curious to see what you find out.
I have both of Leigh Earnshaw`s 51`s. I have so many Kurtis`s that I would have to look at my records to get the info. I do have most of the historyof all my cars, If I could not find the history of cars I owned, I sold them. It cost just as much to feed a thorobred as it does a mule! It is late and I`m going to sleep. I will post the info in a couple days.
Leigh sold the second car to Mike Eisenhower of Wyommissing, pa It had a louvered hood that I put on a kurtis that I sold to Buzz Lowe. I thought it was the other 51 that had a plain hood. Didot realise there were 2 51`s. Mike sold it to a kid named Kaufman from Reading, Pa. I got it from him. I now have pics of both cars, one with louvers one without.
Here is the Kurtis (and hood) you sold my Dad Stan. Chassis #275. I bought the car from Dad when he got his 93 Kurtis back. Ron Leslie has the car now. He used it to clone his dad's Kenz & Leslie V8-60 Kurtis.
Hello, I just started on page one searching for photos of a car I'm trying to find. As I run across cars I know something about I'll post the info. This photo was with post #1164, it is/was the Joe Fiore car that ran a SOHC ROOF on a B block. I had the head and a spair that I sold to Doc Pruden in California around 1975. Sure would be nice to know if someone ever got one of the heads together on a running car. Bob
Thanks for the info on Leigh Earnshaw's first and second number 51 midgets. I just spoke to Leigh on the phone and he confirms that there were three number 51 midgets, and that I actually have number three. Non the less, the history on my car is totally accurate and confirmed by Leigh, Jack Crawford and George Benson. The goal is to hopefully to find some information on the car prior to 1960. I would appreciate any information our fellow HAMB members might have.
Which car are you trying to find photos of? I have boxes full of unsorted (so never scanned or posted) vintage midgets sprints, ports cars etc. I'm not really ready to go through them, one-by-one, again! but If I recall seeing a photo of it, I might have an idea which box it may be in, IF I have one. I also have about an 18" high pile of old original Illustrated Speedway Newspapers from (I think?) late 1930s to mid 40's, that i bought on Ebay about a dozen years ago. I have been trying to find this large size PILE in one of the 400 crates & boxes in the back room, for about 6 years now!. How does something that BIG! disappear? ARGHHH!
Is Jack Crawford the same gent whose tank ended up on the bridge at the grove?;
The Bogan Racers crew taking a break at Western Speedway early 1950s.
'McHal Crash Helmets Special'
Hal Minyard sitting on the edge of the cockpit.
To: Vintage Racing Group
From: Carl Schulz – Indio, CA
Subj: Victory Lane and Vintage Oval Racing Magazines are merging
Just spoke with Pam Shatraw and she asked that I pass along the following info:
Vintage Oval Racing Magazine will be merged into its sister publication, Victory Lane Magazine.
Oval racing will receive the same coverage and be represented by the same writers and participant format including historical papers and photos, race reports and scheduling.
Now we will have one magazine, Victory Lane, with oval based vintage Indycars, midgets, sprint, and stock cars sharing high quality page format with road race based sports and formula cars.
We are all racers and I look forward to our joining together under one magazine banner.
Is there a day at IMS in May that one can show a vintage race car that was driven by someone who ran the 500?
We lost E.J.Dolner yesterday(as per e-mail from Bonnie Chisholm of WCRA). EJ, builder, mechanic, & owner was in his 80's,& a "fixture" of Open Wheel racing in CA for many decades. He was a friend & will be missed, but long remembered: some of the stories are already legendary, even in his own lifetime!
Thanks Larry. PM
Yes, that is the same Jack Crawford. He was driving the number 19 Ben Cook sprint car when that accident happened.
Hey Josh , Neat photo of Schrader with Bob's Homemade trailer and the 1A beside Stanton's trailer !
Getting kinda bummed out..
Used to restore and sell these cars all year long, for a living. Been trying to sell my (best car) flat tail, Granite State Spl with great history, and records, (even two Championships!) and cannot even get an offer
The lack of a reliable venue to transition cars to new caretakers continues to hurt the vintage racing scene. Very high end cars seen to move OK at the "art" auctions attended by the big collectors but the want ads [either on line or in vintage magazines] don't seem to work. I had hoped Mecum would do something in conjunction with the Miller Meet but so far nothing.
I know your cars have the "right stuff" but see far too many over restored/incorrectly restored/bogus history cars on offer for huge money.
It isn't my intent to become the period correct cop but when a MUSEUM displays a Kurtis copy with 1970s upgrades as a 1946 Edmonds I have to just walk away. The least they could have done was spell the guy's name right when misapplying it to a car. Another museum listed a car as Sesco powered when it clearly had a Chevy II [non-crossflow head] installed.
Anyone have a suggestion to help find memaerobilia find a good home for his car? I'd hate to think all our history has to go Down Under to be appreciated.
This aged fellow (I think he just turned ninety) had his on the market for several years, at $35K, INCLUDING TRAILER!
Even with good, HONEST, log books, the market doesn't seem to be there for old dirt cars. The collectors I know, somehow,seem attracted to the fabulous (very accurate) recreations of Indy cars of great history.
I would have to get over $100,000 for mine, to break near even. Despite its' being invited to many of the important vintage race venues, this past decade. The places like Monterey Historics, the Sonoma Historics, the Circuit of the Americas; and this year, the National Vintage Championships at the "Brickyard"! And, many know (specifically my competitors) mine is not a "putt-putt" show car.
I remember driving up to New Hampshire many years ago to look at that car, don't remember why I passed on it. Can't sell vs can't find, wonder which camp has more members? I'm poking around trying to find out if a car I want survived the 1950's. Bob
Bob, every time I see your avatar, I think about that #33 Sparks-Weirick car. In recent years, I came into possession of a recording made (probably in the 70's) by Art Sparks.
He told about being frustrated with the Miller engine. They, Sparks and Weirick had purchased the 2nd Four Banger that Fred Offenhauser and Leo Goossen came up with. It was a redo design of the Miller Marine 151. Harry didn't think it would sell; but, went ahead with it anyway.
Sparks, in his narrative, told of the troubles with that engine. The crankshaft and cylinder block, as well as the crankcase broke or cracked. They had problems with the gear drive and rods. Finally, in 1932, Sparks embarked on a program to redesign, make patterns and produce a 4 cylinder, DOHC engine. The first engine was finished at the end of the year, 1934. Sparks said the size of the first engine was 246 cubic inches. Several engines of Sparks' were made, some in the range of 200 C.I.D.
The first engine went to Indy in 1935, in the #33 car. Rex Mays put the car on the Pole; and the team thought they were on their way to win the race. Mays brought it in for a stop. It was found that the rear shackle post on the right front spring was broken. Rex thought it would handle, and was ready to go back out. A AAA observer saw the situation, and prevented them from continuing.
I, like most, thought the Sparks merely modified a Miller engine. As it turns out, the original engine in the #33 was, indeed, a Sparks. I wonder where any of those engines are. I wonder if the current owner, Dana Mecum (if the #33 is authentic) knows anything of that engine. Lastly, I wonder if everybody but me, knew that it was a Sparks, not a Miller!
Hi Guys, Looking for a picture or two of a sprint car that raced IMCA in the late 60's.The car was called the Home Builders & Modernizers Spl. #58 It was driver by Bob Davis from Dayton , Oh. The car was owned by William Foster. The qualified 2nd for the 1969 Little 500. was in a wreck on lap 226, finished 19th. The car has a long wheelbase & was powered by a Hilborn injected Big Block Chevy. Thanks Deek
actually Don Edmunds spells his name Edmunds
This is what I explained to the museum manager. Also that he didn't start selling midgets until 1964. I've noticed other mislabeled museum exhibits and terribly misrepresented history in my travels. Am I the only one who thinks it is important to get the details right or say nothing at all?
Tour guides in particular should be familiar with more than their "script." Even at Speedy Bill's place the guide insisted upon calling the Lienke 6 a "six cylinder Offy." Mr. Lienke would have decked him for that remark.
I agree. I am somewhat fanatical about historians giving the correct history, although some may argue that some history, if not totally correct, is better than none at all.
agree 100% gearguy
Separate names with a comma.