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Features VINTAGE SPRINT CAR PIC THREAD, 1965 and older only please.

Discussion in 'Traditional Hot Rods' started by Joshua Shaw, Jan 17, 2008.

  1. D.N.D.
    Joined: Aug 15, 2012
    Posts: 1,385

    D.N.D.
    Member Emeritus

    Looks like Bugatti blue, maybe a works car as they used a lot of camber too ?
     
  2. jdrax
    Joined: Mar 6, 2006
    Posts: 5

    jdrax
    Member

    sprint51.jpg
    would anybody on here know any history of this car or the two guys that owned and raced it.
    Ed Jensen and Ed Fagan
    they were from the Chicago area and the car was worked on by Jara's auto rebuilders in chicago
    I have gotten the car running again and would like to take it to car shows but would like to have some history to share about the car and drivers. by the way I do have the rest of the lower body panels and axles for those of you who pay attention to the details.
     
  3. Jim Nise
    Joined: Oct 31, 2008
    Posts: 1,165

    Jim Nise
    Member

    Rootie, looks like the number is 88. Engine a straight eight???
     
  4. unassembled
    Joined: Nov 12, 2009
    Posts: 72

    unassembled
    Member
    from San Diego


    Hey Rootie,

    In 1948, Manny Ayulo's rookie year, he was a DNQ in a car carrying the #88. Like Jim Nise, I believe the number to be 88. Ayulo later drove a #88 in '53 and '54 if my memory serves me correctly. I'll check my records to see if I can link this car to Ayulo.

    Unassembled
     
  5. unassembled
    Joined: Nov 12, 2009
    Posts: 72

    unassembled
    Member
    from San Diego

    Doesn't look like this is the car Ayulo tried to qualify in 1948. Records indicate a Mercury powered car owned by Connie Weidell. So back to the drawing board! :(
     
  6. racer chaser
    Joined: Dec 25, 2012
    Posts: 143

    racer chaser
    Member
    from indiana

    Rootie Could this possibly be the car that Joel thorne entered for the 1951 race as the Thorne Engineering Adams chassis with a Sparks engine.
     
  7. indyrjc
    Joined: Nov 8, 2008
    Posts: 968

    indyrjc
    Member
    from Indiana

    That's definitely Thorne in the cockpit.

    As for the car it looks to me like a Mercedes-Benz W154 Grand Prix car. Clyde Adams (who built Thorne's earlier Indianapolis cars) likely re-bodied the car and changed it to accept the Sparks 6 engine. Here's a photo of a W154 for comparison; especially pay attention to the front suspension and brake covers.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mercedes-Benz_W154#/media/File:Mercedes-Benz_W154_vl_EMS.jpg

    If true, there must be an interesting story as to how Thorne got his hands on this particular Grand Prix car. Could it possibly be the old Don Lee Mercedes?
     
    Last edited: Sep 14, 2015
  8. Rootie Kazoootie
    Joined: Nov 27, 2006
    Posts: 8,134

    Rootie Kazoootie
    Member
    from Colorado

    I think you guys got it with the Thorne connection. Still haven't found another picture of it but I did come across this and it pretty much confirms it. Thanks! 9-14-a (2).JPG
     
  9. Rootie Kazoootie
    Joined: Nov 27, 2006
    Posts: 8,134

    Rootie Kazoootie
    Member
    from Colorado

    Pat O'Conner Indy 1956. 9-15-a.JPG 9-15-b.JPG 9-15-c.JPG
     
  10. THE FRENCHTOWN FLYER
    Joined: Jun 6, 2007
    Posts: 3,189

    THE FRENCHTOWN FLYER
    Member
    from FRENCHTOWN

    Please help educate me. Why would lots of positive camber be good for handling? On a turn It seems like it would unload the outer tire and transfer more of the load to the inner tire, but with subsequently increased outer tire wear, no? The only other thing it could possibly help is to get the kingpin axis to intersect the contact patch. Dunno.

    FYI the reworked F1 front axle I'm using also has significant camber.
     
  11. Joshua Shaw
    Joined: Feb 7, 2007
    Posts: 2,191

    Joshua Shaw
    Member

    Amazing stuff guys.
     
  12. indyrjc
    Joined: Nov 8, 2008
    Posts: 968

    indyrjc
    Member
    from Indiana

    Here's the thinking at the time:

    Quote from The Grand Prix Car: Volume Two (1954): "Positive camber is preferred because it allows for a smaller contact patch on straights, and therefore less rolling resistance. Under braking and through corners, the weight transfer allows for more tyre on the track and more grip."

    Straightaway top speed was considered most important in those days because basically no one's car really cornered all that well. And remember that there was a ton of suspension travel in those days so the outside tire picked up camber as it was loaded so that more tire tread area came into contact with the road in the turns. Considering tire construction and the rock hard compounds being used there must have been merit to the idea. That was the standard road racing suspension design for almost 50 years.
     
  13. Rootie Kazoootie
    Joined: Nov 27, 2006
    Posts: 8,134

    Rootie Kazoootie
    Member
    from Colorado

    9-16-a.JPG I think it was mainly Euro/road race thinking. At least it seems Frank Kurtis didn't subscribe to the theory.
     
    Dean Lowe likes this.
  14. Rootie Kazoootie
    Joined: Nov 27, 2006
    Posts: 8,134

    Rootie Kazoootie
    Member
    from Colorado

    Walt Ader in the Olson Spl. 1947. 9-16-b.JPG 9-16-c.JPG
     
  15. Rootie Kazoootie
    Joined: Nov 27, 2006
    Posts: 8,134

    Rootie Kazoootie
    Member
    from Colorado

    Bobby Unser in the Colvin/Shepard K-E-Y spl. 9-17-a.JPG 9-17-b.JPG
     
    Al Consoli likes this.
  16. Mitch G
    Joined: Dec 9, 2008
    Posts: 101

    Mitch G
    Member

    Still the best sprint / champ car thread on the net.....
     
    Speedwrench and They call me Bob like this.
  17. 29AVEE8
    Joined: Jun 28, 2008
    Posts: 1,384

    29AVEE8
    Member

    Page 423 of the "Miller Dynasty" suggests that is exactly what occurred. There is also a Wiki mention of it here, for whatever it is worth.
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mercedes-Benz_W154
     
    Last edited: Sep 17, 2015
  18. indyrjc
    Joined: Nov 8, 2008
    Posts: 968

    indyrjc
    Member
    from Indiana

    Thank you for providing the link. Here's some interesting info from Wiki:

    "The ex-Don Lee W154 made one final appearance at Indianapolis in 1957. The car was now owned by Edward Shreve, and had a Jaguar straight-six engine fitted. Danny Kladis drove the car, but failed to qualify for the race."


    James Edward Shreve was the man from the Safety Auto Glass company in Indianapolis that later had the Jones & Maley Kurtis roadster put up on the roof of his building where it sat for decades. I had no idea that he also owned the old Don Lee Mercedes as well. The car would have been almost 20 years old in 1957.
     
  19. Rootie Kazoootie
    Joined: Nov 27, 2006
    Posts: 8,134

    Rootie Kazoootie
    Member
    from Colorado

    9-18-a.JPG 9-18-b.JPG 9-18-c.JPG 9-18-d.JPG 9-18-e.JPG Len Sutton had a tough rookie experience at Indy 56.
     
    296ardun likes this.
  20. Jim Nise
    Joined: Oct 31, 2008
    Posts: 1,165

    Jim Nise
    Member

    I see Herb (horsepower) Porter on the left rear in picture number 2.

    Who is the driver watching Len pull the stripes?
     
  21. Rootie Kazoootie
    Joined: Nov 27, 2006
    Posts: 8,134

    Rootie Kazoootie
    Member
    from Colorado

    That's Jack Turner on the right. The fellow in the checkered shirt, standing to Suttons left is Wally Meskowski, the head wrench on Turner's Travelon car that year. Both Sutton and Turner came out of the PNW so I suspect they were friends, explaining their involvement in the tape pulling.
     
  22. ilinrods41
    Joined: Oct 21, 2009
    Posts: 81

    ilinrods41
    Member

    My grandpa Bill Steely at Jungle Park Speedway 1947 car steely.jpg Bill Steely at Jungle Park Speedway 1947
     
    carl s likes this.
  23. Dick L
    Joined: Dec 21, 2010
    Posts: 138

    Dick L
    Member

    I agree.
     
  24. Dick L
    Joined: Dec 21, 2010
    Posts: 138

    Dick L
    Member

  25. Dick L
    Joined: Dec 21, 2010
    Posts: 138

    Dick L
    Member

    Speedwrench likes this.
  26. Rootie Kazoootie
    Joined: Nov 27, 2006
    Posts: 8,134

    Rootie Kazoootie
    Member
    from Colorado

    Here's a shot of Turner after passing his rookie test, same year, along with Wally. I don't know who the fellow is who's shaking his hand but I've seen him a lot of post rookie test pics, often with a clipboard, so I assume he was probably in charge of the rookie tests. 9-18-f.JPG
     
  27. indyrjc
    Joined: Nov 8, 2008
    Posts: 968

    indyrjc
    Member
    from Indiana

    That is Paul Johnson who was a long time AAA/USAC official. He was involved in Rookie Tests well into the 1970s IIRC. As you say he shows up in a lot of "Rookie Stripe" peeling photos.
     
  28. JonF
    Joined: Mar 6, 2010
    Posts: 169

    JonF
    Member

    Rootie -
    Many of the earlier cars had just half a tread and were smooth on the left side. Do you know what they thought that would do for handling or tire life?
     
  29. Rootie Kazoootie
    Joined: Nov 27, 2006
    Posts: 8,134

    Rootie Kazoootie
    Member
    from Colorado

    It was for monitoring the tire wear. As the tread part wore down it would indicated it was time to pit for new tires.
     
  30. Circletrack 40
    Joined: Mar 4, 2008
    Posts: 103

    Circletrack 40
    Member

    Is the #3 Shepard/Colvin sprinter the former Platoleen 500 that Roger McCluskey drove?
    I am going by the injection stacks.
     

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