Saturday, March 26, 2011

Shelby AC Dragonsnakes (only 8 made)

Ed Hedrick pistured above in the (fuchia or magenta yuck) dragonsnake that put the AC Cobra into the national records for winning A B and C/sports for 1963 and 1964
Available in 1963, sold with 23 options designed specifically for drag racing. The 289 cu in engine was availble in 4 stages of performance, 271, 300, 325 and 380 horsepower

Oct 2011 update, one just was at Mecum at Monterey auction, and didn't sell at 825,000

One of the decal muscle cars, the Rebel Machine

This is the best and biggest photo I've come across of the decal, I had to share it.

The "Le Monstre" of Briggs Cunningham, 1950 Le Mans 24 hours

Friday, March 25, 2011

My Cousin Vinny hysterical comedy bit, and the awesome positraction Tempest defense

Vinny Gambini: Maybe you didn't twist it hard enough.
Lisa: I twisted it just right.
Vinny Gambini: How could you be so sure?
Lisa: [sighs] If you will look in the manual, you will see that this particular model faucet requires a range of 10 to 16 foot-pounds of torque. I routinely twist the maximum allowable torquage.
Vinny Gambini: Well, how could you be sure you used 16 foot-pounds of torque?
Lisa: Because I used a Craftsman model 1019 Laboratory Edition Signature Series torque wrench. The kind used by Caltech high energy physicists. And NASA engineers.
Vinny Gambini: Well, in that case, how can you be sure THAT's accurate?
Lisa: Because a split second before the torque wrench was applied to the faucet handle, it had been calibrated by top members of the state AND federal Department of Weights and Measures... to be dead on balls accurate!
[She rips a page out of a magazine and hands it to him]
Lisa: Here's the certificate of validation.
Vinny Gambini: Dead on balls accurate?
Lisa: It's an industry term.
Vinny Gambini: [tosses paper away] I guess the fucking thing is broken.

start at the 35 second mark

Lisa: The car that made these two, equal-length tire marks had positraction. You can't make those marks without positraction, which was not available on the '64 Buick Skylark!
Vinny Gambini: And why not? What is positraction?
Lisa: It's a limited slip differential which distributes power equally to both the right and left tires. The '64 Skylark had a regular differential, which, anyone who's been stuck in the mud in Alabama knows, you step on the gas, one tire spins, the other tire does nothing.
[the jury members nod, with murmurs of "yes," "that's right," etc]
Vinny Gambini: Is that it?
Lisa: No, there's more! You see? When the left tire mark goes up on the curb and the right tire mark stays flat and even? Well, the '64 Skylark had a solid rear axle, so when the left tire would go up on the curb, the right tire would tilt out and ride along its edge. But that didn't happen here. The tire mark stayed flat and even. This car had an independent rear suspension. Now, in the '60's, there were only two other cars made in America that had positraction, and independent rear suspension, and enough power to make these marks. One was the Corvette, which could never be confused with the Buick Skylark. The other had the same body length, height, width, weight, wheel base, and wheel track as the '64 Skylark, and that was the 1963 Pontiac Tempest.
Vinny Gambini: And because both cars were made by GM, were both cars available in metallic mint green paint?
Lisa: They were!

Automatic license plate recognition computer programs are now used by police (skip the first 10 seconds)

A better way to utilize this plate recognition software for stolen cars is to have the cameras on over passes, any stolen car on the freeway or highway will be pinged instantly.

Lots of stolen cars are never found. I like that law enforcement is using this new tech, out there busting people with no insurance or stolen plates, or out of date registration. However no insurance company is going to lower our rates because cops find more stolen cars, I bet you. Two times, as they said in "Do The Right Thing"

Team Isetta almost finished! July 2011 is the target for completion

We’re still pluggin’ along on the Isetta. Usually just one or two girls at a time and Mark, who at 12, was with the project from the very first day in May of 07. One of the girls, I call her the son I never had, managed to get a three hour block every Thursday morning. When she signed on the car was spread all over the shop, unpainted and looking rather forlorn.

We are doing our best to make this a very true restoration, and that has taken a lot of research and a library of over 700 photographs. It took quite a while to find an untouched original cabriolet to crawl around, but we managed to locate two, and they have been an incredible help. Oddball things (try to find new 8mm X 1.25 nuts with a 14mm head, they only make them with 13mm heads now) we either make or have made. We’ve discovered, through several very knowledgeable enthusiasts both here and in Germany, quite a few little known (or perhaps rarely applied) facts that help us to perform an accurate restoration. We’re shooting for a finished, ready to show, car by July. There are some great guys out there, building some beautiful cars; it’ll be fun to see how this little back-woods build stacks up.

We still get e-mails on the Team Sprite website , I think it’s near 20,000 hits to date, quite remarkable for a little school in the foothills of Northern California.
Most of those young ladies have graduated from, or are just finishing up college, but we still keep tabs on each other. I’ve known several of them since they were eight or nine and it’s been a real honor to watch them grow up.

You may recall that four of those young women and I, went in together and purchased the bugeye as a tub and 21 boxes of unlabeled parts. When RM auctioned the car 18 eighteen months later, we paid off a substantial Visa card and split the remainder of the sale price. With the Isetta, we’ll be free to show the car for a year or two without concerning ourselves about financial obligations. Because it was to be a rotating class, and there was no school funding for something like this, I picked up the tab on the Isetta and the money can stay there until the next project pops up.

Brian Powers
Living Wisdom School
Nevada City, Calif
to read all about the Team Sprite or Team Isetta coverage:

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Chris has posted the ultimate list of the top 20 car chase scenes (but is still open to ammending his list) to see his top 20

You can email him your opinions or list of your favorites at or

I haven't seen all of the movies that have these chases, but I have seen most and the variety of movies with a car chase is quite broad... from Sci Fi like the Matrix Reloaded, to old cop movies that were normal investigation style detectives like The French Connection... I can't remember any part of the story line of the French Connection, just Gene and that car chase scene, but Chris has the scoop on what was really going on with the chase scene, and I've never learned this stuff before, it's all news to me!

Bad Boys (Will Smith) had the best collection of muscle cars in a single scene, 70 Superbee, Firebird, Yenko Duece, 67? Chevelle, 76? Trans Am, and that was just until the gun fight.... the chase reconvened with the bad guys dropping cars off a transporter one at a time. Best scene is at the top of Chris' list

Watch the "Masters Touch" to see a 62 Savoy mistreated like no other

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

The newest addition to the Mullin Museum, the 1938 Hispano-Suiza / Saoutchick Xenia (winner of Goodwood, Amelia, Pebble Beach, Greenwich awards)

2000: Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance (Restoration debut) - Most Elegant Closed Car
2001 Amelia Island Concours d’Elegance - Best in Show
2001 Meadowbrook - Engineering Excellence Award
2001 Greenwich Concours - Best in Show, Most Outstanding French Car
2005 Pasadena Art Center - Student Choice Award 2008 Rodeo Concours - Best in Show
2009 Goodwood Festival of Speed, Best in Show
2010 Driving in Style, 1930-1965 - Featured vehicle at High Museum of Art
2011 The Allure of the Automobile – To be featured at Portland Art Museum
The creation of Andre Dubonet, successful race car driver, and WWI fighter pilot.
Early in life, Dubonet developed a passion and took great delight in speed and adventure and desired to perfect the future of road transportation and in particular, the suspension system. As his favorite car was the Hispano-Suiza, he picked the 1932 H-6C chassis, which he had seen previously at the Paris Auto Salon and began sketching designs for a prototype, drawing upon his aviation background and racing experience. Further, this 1938 car was designed to reach 125mph which rivaled any car of the time and had a cutting-edge four-wheel independent suspension. In fact, the innovative suspension technology mounted each front wheel on a single arm that extended forward from the kingpin, while a pair of oil-filled, coil spring cylinders offered resistance and swiveled as each wheel turned, improving rise and handling. This original suspension system was later licensed by General Motors and used on its Chevrolet and Pontiac brands. Dubonnet designed his steel masterpiece at 19ft long and claimed that his Hispano-Suiza hyperflex suspension system would give it the “suppleness of a cat”. He took his designs to French coachbuilder, Jacques Saoutchik who helped him with the framework of the automobile, and then partnered with engineer Antoine-Marie Chedru to develop his patented independent front-suspension system. What followed was a dramatically streamlined build with an emphasis on aerodynamic styling, affectionately named Xenia, after Dubonnet’s first wife. Far ahead of its time, the Xenia resembles the fuselage of an airplane with a slender, tapered shape and pointed tail. A new parallel opening door system was used as part of the aerodynamic design and special attention was given to the undercarriage for clean air movement. The curved glass of the windshield and doors are reminiscent of airplane-styling and the panoramic windscreen and removal top were exceptionally futuristic. It featured an 8 liter overhead-valve inline 6 engine capable of 144bhp in standard form. To protect this revolutionary automobile during World War II, the Xenia was hidden away in 1939 and did not resurface until 1946 in Paris. The Xenia was then purchased by Alain Balleret, President of the French Hispano-Suiza Club who began the vehicles restoration. for more about the Mullin Museum: For 3 less artisticaly stunning photos, but one shows the incredible door hinge mechanism: When someone is as unusually brilliant and involved with cars as Andre, the story doesn't stop with just one creation... have you seen the Tulip Wood Hispano Suiza?
last 3 images from

how to hide a dent... use 6 sharpie markers and a lot of drawing ability

Steve, thanks man! This is a geat piece of art to share, and reading through the source forum, inpsired a lot of people who would like the same on their car.
to see the whole gallery, from plain hood to art piece,
if that gives you an error message go to
then click on General Board it is the 4th thread down,
then click on the 15th thread down, the "Draw on my Bonnet"

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Trackless train, I doubt we'll ever see one of these in person, but they were once used to draw attention to movie premieres

for the gallery of the others:

stagecoach and a DC 3, this strange photo has been revealed by Steve to be part of a 1949 advertisement

Steve found that this is from an advertisement that American Airlines ran in various magazines in 1949. This one is from the April 4, 1949 issue of Time.
The title reads "This month a grand old plane makes its last flight." The copy states that the DC-3 (21 passengers at 200 mph) was being replaced by the DC-6 (52 passengers at 300 mph) and the Convair CV-240 (40 passengers at 300 mph). The DC-4 (44 passengers at 227 mph) had been retired by the airline the year before.

Indiana road department, line painter

Found on I know I posted 2 other highway line paint machines, they were unusual, but I can't find them right now.

Edsel ambulance.. thats bizarre

Found on

Jim has nailed this ambulance on several perspectives;
What's interesting about this car is that it was made from a sedan, not a wagon, as most ambulances were. This was converted by the Memphian company. Other Edsel ambulances were made by Amblewagon, but they started life as wagons

Thanks Jim! I missed that roofline issue and would never have known anything about the conversion companies. It's way cool that you left this info in the comment section, my compliments and appreciation!

Diplock's Pedrail. What a name! Somebody should call their band this name.

If it had caught on, we'd still know about it, but it is a interesting idea for rough terrain, maybe rocky terrain. Reminds me immediately of these other two unusual ideas in rim/wheel design

Found on

Before flying over the Sahara was commonplace, some people were presistant in crossing by vehicle, here's the strangest way that worked, mobile carpet

All kinds of vehicles have crossed, or tried to cross the Sahara. This 28 Hp Peugeot of Liegeard is equipped with belts, and drove the 450 km of Biskra in Touggourt and back, and 150 km of Tebessa in Gafsa in 1908.
This one above and below seems to be a caterpillar tread endowed tractor

Sunday, March 20, 2011

Osborn Electriquette, San Diego 1915 Panama-California Expostion

Rice field tractor in India, good engineering design for the wheels

Get a little crazy as long as you don't wreck


Lincoln Capri at the annual Trueline car show and open house

Uni lug Super ET rims, great looking, but have you ever seen any with oval center caps?

I've never seen these center caps before.. I like them. Uni lug rims are indicated by the washers under the lug nuts, and the shape of them is eccentric, that is to say the oval shape has the hoel for he lug stud off center, and you can flip the washer if you bought the rims for a 4 1/2 inch spaced bolt pattern, or a 4 inch pattern. I don't recall what vehicles use what size, but I think I recall that Mopar is one and Chevy the other. A second set of spacers was made that had the hole in the center, for 4 1/4 rims. I just looked and 3 years ago I posted about uni lugs, but didn't have such a good looking rim to model for me.

Nik may not be blogging at Carrosantigos right now, but he's posting cool photos at

That kid is probably riding a motorcycle right now
Wonder why they are loading that car from the 2nd floor to that delivery truck

Model T tool kit

Who? takes a bug on a deer hunting trip?

I'd like to know what's in the crate

The Nash with sleeper cab. I've seen one at a car cruise, it's not bad!

DeNiro, Taxi Driver, such an ironic sign over his arm

That is Ray Brock, but where is the steering wheel? If this were a right hand drive the speedometer would also be on the right.
Michigan junkyard, 1968

This is some cool stuff! See more at