Thursday, July 20, 2017

it's not possible that any other photo could illustrate that it's Comic Con time any better, and I am offline til Sunday at least

598 mile 1st year Diablo, one owner, and one of 21 equipped with the Bruguet Type "4330" Chronometer, 300 thou and it's yours

 this was a one-off, special-order, special wish example completed in brilliant "Impact White" with a complementary full white leather interior with contrasting red piping. It also received the very popular upgraded Alpine Stereo / CD system with amplifier and subwoofer.

full gallery and description at

Letterer Johnny Watts, at age 81, still plies his trade the old-fashioned way: freehand, since age 13.

Using pictures Allen acquired, Watts lettered the car just as it would have been done back in the day—freehand. Watts has been lettering automobiles for 68 years, starting his craft at the age of 13. He’s one of only a handful who still applies the paint freehand with a trusted brush he’s had for many years. Over a two-day period, Watts gave the Bonner Thunderbolt character.

Watts uses a Coca-Cola crate as a stool and workbench. He adjusts the position of the crate from vertical to horizontal and flat as he starts high and works down low

Firestone made drag slicks for the Ford Thunderbolt, specifically, back in the 60s.

Firestone Lightning Slicks. They’re unique to the Thunderbolt as they have a lightning-bolt tread pattern. Few remain still intact and on a Thunderbolt.

the Harley Sportster turns 60, 1957 to 2017

politicians have lost their minds, this makes it official.... , Alabama teens need a business license to mow lawns for money

Teenagers have been threatened by officials and other lawn services to show their city issued business license ($110) before cutting a persons lawn for extra summer cash.

Thanks Eddie!

The Grand Tour season two, likely will be delayed while Hammond's knee heals up so he can drive, but they released a preview

as ludicrous as the salaries and costs are for filming The Grand Tour, the 1st year profited 11 million dollars.

The McLaren F1. 25 years ago it was the fastest street legal car, at 231mph. It's engine cover was gold foil.

it weighs the same as a Miata.

It's worth 12-15 million dollars.

If your engine needs a rebuild, they loan you one so you can keep enjoying your car while it's getting rebuilt at the shop. The engine is a 6.1 liter 650 Hp BMW V12. Honda bailed on the engine supply contract

It's engine cover has a warning light. This was discovered by a German business man who used his F1 as a commuter. It seems at around 190 mph the cover lifted off the sensor enough to trip the warning light... he said that the light came on every drive to work, and every drive home. Lucky guy

this is Bruce Wiener, he had that collection of micro cars

Road and Track magazine celebrates it's 70th anniversary this year

their 1st issue was June 1947

Vermont's Governor, Phil Scot, is the first sitting governor to ever win a stock car race, it was his 30th career win.

The sixty-year-old head of state scored his 30th career victory at Vermont's Thunder Road earlier this month in dramatic fashion, holding off several challengers in the Late Model Series to take the checkered flag and become the track's all time wins leader - and the first sitting governor to ever win a stock car race of any kind.

Scott, 58, took office in January after six years as lieutenant governor and a decade as a state senator.

Before Scott began stock car racing, he raced motorcycles and snowmobiles, turning to stock cars in his early 30s. He’s now in his 27th year of racing at Thunder Road, his 26th in the top late-model division. Over that time he has won three track championships, most recently in 2002.

Going into this season, Scott had won 29 feature races at Thunder Road, the most ever. On July 6, he won his 30th.

Today's salute goes out to Daron Taylor, 9th grader with a lawn care business, and innovated a bike trailer for his mower to get between jobs with all the gear needed for jobs

Daron Taylor started cutting grass when he was 14, preferring to spend his summer break building a business over playing video games.

 Finding it difficult to carry equipment and push his mower from house to house, and being too young to drive a car or truck, Taylor devised a homemade trailer, which hooks up to his bicycle and carries his mower, blower, string trimmer, extra fuel and personal protective equipment.

D’s LawnCare, also employs Taylor’s little brother, serves eight to 10 regular customers, and also does single services.

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how many parts can be replaced before a car is no longer considered original? How many before it's not even the same car? What if you replaced them all, slowly, and put the used parts together? Then you have two cars, with the same serial number. Jaguar XKD 530

Chassis number XKD 530 is one of the 54 examples produced for privateer customers, this car left the factory on February 13, 1956, finished in British Racing Green. Retailed through Finnish Jaguar dealer S.M.K., the car was delivered in April 1956 to Curt Lincoln, of Helsinki, a tennis player on Finland’s Davis Cup team who was known to the racing world for his exploits in F3 midget cars and a Jaguar C-Type.

As factory documentation reportedly demonstrates, Mr. Lincoln sought to avoid excessive duty on the import; therefore, he instructed Coventry to make the car appear used, so that it would not be subject to new vehicle tariffs. To this end, the factory brushed the pedals to make them appear worn, replaced the steering wheel with a used one, and adjusted the odometer to misleadingly reflect accrued mileage, among other measures.

Other than the 1957 Elaintarhanajo, XKD 530 was used primarily for ice racing following the 1956 season, and team Askolin fitted the tires with 1¾-inch spikes

the FIA’s cancellation of the Production Sports Car class in 1957 prompted Mr. Lincoln to contacting the factory with interest in modifying the car to GT class specifications by converting it into an XK-SS road car. Eventually, the decision was made to conduct further race modifications domestically. Coachbuilders Wiima, of Helsinki, were retained to install a full-width windscreen, a new nearside door, and a custom tail fin.

On May 26, 1959, Mr. Lincoln wrote to Jaguar’s racing chief, F.R.W. “Lofty” England, that the rigors of ice racing had taken a toll on the car, and an overhaul was in order. The D-Type arrived at the Works competition department in Coventry in December 1959, and the engine block was replaced with a factory 3.8-liter example. The 40-millimeter Weber carburetors were replaced with 45-millimeter units, the gearbox and brakes were reconditioned, and the car was repainted in white. XKD 530 then returned to Scuderia Askolin with a written tag stating “+100 hp,” and Mr. Lincoln resumed racing it, taking the checkered flag twice more in February of 1960.

Heimo Hietarinta finished 1st in the Formula Libre Class at the Leningrad Grand Prix on August 27, 1961. XKD530 is believed to be the only D-Type to have ever raced in the Soviet Union, and the occasion was reported in the September 1961 issue of Finnish magazine Tekniikan Maailma, forever documenting the car’s momentous participation.

In November 1966, no longer competitive on Finland’s ice courses, XKD 530 was sold to English collector Nigel Moores, showing the symptoms of hard use, and the body had been modified to an open two-seater cockpit with a truncated tail. As rebuilding the original body was deemed to be too prohibitively expensive for a car of such value at that time, it was decided that the later D-Type construction manner, which involved separately bolting a front and rear chassis sub-frame to the monocoque body, afforded the opportunity to remove the damaged body and salvage as many original chassis components as possible.

Mr. Moores’ staff separated the chassis tub, mounted all-new bodywork in the factory long-nose style, and fitted the car with the wide-angle headed D-Type engine that had originally been used by the Cunningham team. The separated monocoque body, the original engine, and the gearbox were put aside and eventually sold, around 1984, to historic racer John Harper, who repaired the coachwork and mounted it on an all-new chassis that mostly consisted of various original Jaguar factory components.

As both resulting cars were stamped with the XKD 530 chassis number, a controversy gradually emerged as to the proper identity of each car, and which was, in fact, the authentic original car.

As detailed by an extensive five-part feature series written by Paul Skilleter and Jim Patten for Jaguar World Monthly magazine between December 2002 and September 2003, the consignor acquired one car in 1998 and the other in June 2002, then delivered both cars in late 2002 to Chris Keith-Lucas’s well-regarded CKL Developments in East Sussex.

Disassembling both cars, CKL carefully noted the individual part numbers and, comparing them to original factory parts numbering supplied by long-time D-Type expert, separated and color-coded the parts that were original to XKD 530 and those used as replacements in either of the two vehicles.

Following the mid-2003 completion of CKL’s amazing restoration, which reunited XKD 530’s separated components for the first time in 35 years, the car was taken to Goodwood for some initial laps, and veteran Le Mans driver Mike Salman (who drove several D-Types in period) was asked to join the session and share his thoughts for the JWM feature.

 XKD 530 has run the Mille Miglia Storica four times since the restoration, and it has been invited to the 2009 Villa d’Este Concorso d’Eleganza, the 2009 Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance, and the 2011 Amelia Island Concours d’Elegance.

Additional vintage race participation included the 2011 Silverstone Classic’s Stirling Moss Trophy, the 2011 Goodwood Revival Sussex Trophy, and the 2012 Goodwood Revival Sussex Trophy, where the car finished 8th overall and 1st among all D-Type entrants.

 In 2008, the Jaguar was returned to CKL for a sympathetic rebuild of the engine, clutch, differential, and brakes, among other components, further ensuring strong future performance.

Accompanied by a FIVA Passport and FIA papers, and featuring its original engine, transmission, chassis frame, monocoque body, and brake calipers, XKD 530 is believed to be one of the most original examples extant, and it has been carefully scrutinized by some of the niche’s leading experts, resulting in a very complete car of utmost authenticity.

this looks like an incredible place to have a Concours due to the terraced lawn. Heveningham Hall in Sullfolk, England. Previously a WW2 airfield

Heveningham Hall is a 5000 acre estate deep in the heart of rural Suffolk. The house was mostly designed by Sir Robert Taylor in 1778 for Sir Gerrard Vanneck, a wealthy Dutch merchant.

The Vanneck family owned the hall until 1970 when the hall, which by then was in a poor state of repair, was handed over to the Department of Environment in lieu of death duties. In 1981 the house was sold to an Iraqi businessman who then commenced to repair and conserve the hall, but died before restoration was completed.

It was then purchased in 1994 by the current custodian Mr and Mrs Jon Hunt, who then set about restoring the hall and the Capability Brown (18th century landscape artist) landscape to their former glory.

Lagonda. Sounds quite British... but it's not.

The Lagonda car company was founded in 1906 by Wilber Gunn, an American, who named the company after a river near his home in Springfield Ohio.

So... it's in that same strange territory as the Hispano Suiza, made in France with a name that is decidedly not French

Wednesday, July 19, 2017

Described as one of the least used and lowest ownership examples of the D Type Jag - XKD 534

Shipped to Wellington from the Midland’s dealership Attwood’s, it was race-prepared for local enthusiast Sam Gibbons to enter for his son Bob. He drove it in the New Zealand Grand Prix meeting at Ardmore Aerodrome in 1957. During the race leading British driver Ken Wharton fatally crashed, but Gibbons won, beating Jack Brabham into second place.

During the 1957-58 season Gibbons also won the Ken Wharton Memorial Trophy at Ardmore but at Dunedin hit a trackside post. The car was then sold to sheep farmer Angus Hyslop, who raced it in a programme of New Zealand events during the early 1960s and took the car to Europe.

During his ownership a new 3.8 litre D-Type short block engine was imported and installed. Ownership then passed to fellow New Zealander Simon Taylor who won the Ken Wharton Memorial Trophy in 1962. After one other change of ownership, it ended up in 1964 with Noel Foster

Foster didn't use the D-type for competition, savouring it instead for fun driving on high days and holidays on the rural roads of New Zealand's north island. His son - also Noel - recalls that "Dad used to commute in a Brooklands Riley, but said it took him 30 minutes each way. Once he tried the D-type and cut 10 minutes off his time, so he took to using it regularly".  It has 40,000 miles on the clock, and its original leather seat coverings

The most famous quarrel over a car, was between two Ferrari owners, because they each had a copy of Ferrari 330P chassis # 0818

The Italian court affirmed in 2011 that the only real 0818 was that of Italian Fabrizio Violati. A characteristic case of a car whose pieces were used to rebuild two cars

after being raced by Graham Hill, at Sebring, Le Mans, etc, here is it's history
1966 - chassis stayed in a garage that David Piper shared with Tom Meade in Modena.
77 - Mike Oustromoff, Redditch, UK
77 - restoration started using the original engine and chassis, new body built by Wakefields of Byfleet, UK
81 Donington
81 Monthlery
82 - Christopher Murray, Middletown, RI, USA (drug smuggler)
82/sep/04 20th anniversary 250 GTO Chris Murray/ Francois Sicard "58 D 1799"

84/dec/17 - confiscated by the US Government and offered for sale
85/jun - offered for $250,000.
85/oct/30 - Fabrizio Violati -  through US Government and court of Bridgeport/CT
86 - nose redone by Allegretti, Modena, I
89/aug OGP Nuerburgring Stefano Durelli
89 - Fabrizio Violati "Maranello Rosso", San Marino C178 p32
2006 - Cerificate of Authenticity issued by Ferrari Classiche, no. 037F

Dick Protheroe,  British gentleman racer, had the car re-bodied to P2 style by Drogo, but then he crashed fatally with the car.

The remains were eventually acquired by Mike Oustromoff, who used the original engine and chassis for a reconstruction. After a brief spell in the United States, the car was bought by Fabrizio Violati in 1985 for his Maranello Rosso museum.

the super secret Simca test track in Mortefontaine forest, 25 miles north of Paris

Henri Pigozzi, owner of Simca, decided that he needed a tool his engineers could discretely use to develop their new models. The landowner, Count de Gramont, agreed to lend his land for 30 years to the projects of his hunting partner.

Just over 2 miles long, its route was a synthesis of all the difficulties of a road network.

Fast curves, tight turns, uneven slopes, pins, sinuous portions at high speeds, long straight lines, everything is there, interspersed with paved areas and wet passages. In the middle, large asphalted areas make it possible to carry out braking tests as well as crash tests in complete safety.

In 1968 Chrysler bought Simca, and got the track, then it was transferred to
Peugeot-Citroën in 1978 when it acquired Chrysler Europe.
 In 1988, it was taken over by Valeo, which sold it to
 Pininfarina in 2003.

Today, the facilities are owned by UTAC (Union Technique de l'Automobile of the Motorcycle and Cycle), which also has the Montlhéry test center and its famous autodrome.

coincidence that these competitors were lined up in similar photos?

Buick Lucerne... named for a city in Switzerland. Why? I can't find an answer online

The Lucerne (from 2006 through 2011) replaced both the upscale LeSabre, and top of the line, Park Avenue. Well, if you're naming a car for a place, and you are replacing Park Avenue... why go with a Swiss city? There is also a large dairy by the name of Lucerne

 And then the Lucerne was replaced with the LaCrosse... a hockey stick game, (the city in Wisconsin has a space after the La and before Crosse, but was preceded by the LaSabre. Maybe someone in the naming process was stuck on the words beginning with L that have no meaning? That sound French?

Braking was not one of the Lucerne's strong points, as testing revealed stopping distances that were the longest in the full-size sedan class, as it's bigger than a Chrysler 300

A LaSabre is a sword, a LaCrosse is a stick for the purpose of catching a ball (the crosse)

I even sent an email to, but I doubt they are going to reply, even if they knew. They are only interested in selling cars, not discussing history

the CF Express for Centerforce Clutches powered by a BD Diesel twin turbo 24v Cummins

I've posted a lot of fire engines, fire trucks, etc... finally, here's a new fire fighter movie "Only The Brave"

a beer truck catering company has outfitted a 1952 Chevy Panel truck, a 1965 Chevy Panel truck, a 1969 Chevy C-10, and a 1957 Chevy Apache 3100... and for $25000 you can buy a franchise

42,100 pounds of beer spilled in Colorado, a semi had to use the emergency ramp in Wolf's Creek Colorado when his brakes failed

The 25-year-old driver managed to get on the second ramp he passed — which also happened to be the last ramp before the road, called Wolf Creek Pass, got really involved.

“He handled that truck like an absolute champ,” Smith told the Herald, adding that “the beer was just absolutely everywhere. It was pretty hilarious.”

In June, the Colorado Department of Transportation launched the “Beware the Wolf” campaign to warn truck drivers of the risks involved in traveling Wolf Creek Pass, considered one of the worst mountain passes for semi-trucks.

the truck left the highway to use the emergency ramp, and everything was fine until it began to roll back down the hill and the beer over powered the trailer door when momentum took hold.

 I don't see any load bars.

the event was caught on dash cam,

the Ferrari collection in suburban Michigan, what a museum curator's driveway looked like in 1965-69

“The Vignale coupe is a 225/250MM 0266M, the GP is a 166 no. 06C, on the right is a 375Plus no. 0392AM, in the middle is the ex- Pabst 500/625 TR.”

Said Merritt, “The tall enginein front left, is the world’s oldest Harry Miller engine, dating 1917. Then an assortment of HAL DO dirt track engines along with several Mondial, TRC, a Monza 750 and Monza 860. Also a Ferrari V-12 of some sort.

About 10-15 Ferrari engines were in the basement of our tiny house, for lack of room in the garage.

Merritt explained how the Mexico found itself in front of his house. “I was the pro bono curator to help Carl Bross assemble the world’s first Ferrari collection. That would have been in 1965 or so."

Richard F. Merritt, who had worked at Ford, GM and selling Volkswagens part time, and who realized that the Ferrari would be the next Bugatti. Over the years, Merritt would buy and sell 48 of the most desirable Ferraris ever built, but his main claim to fame would come as the co-author (with Warren Fitzgerald) of the landmark “Ferrari, the Sports and Grand Turismo Cars”.

Tuesday, July 18, 2017

I thought the biggest thing I'd see in a convention center was the tank at SEMA last year, but this rail car is bigger, and quite a surprise. It was part of the train for the opening day of Disneyland, behind the engine when Walt pulled into the Main Street Station at the theme park.

The car is normally on display at Walt’s Barn in Griffith Park, where the Carolwood Foundation restored it to opening day condition

the entire rail car was hand crafted by the Disney craftsmen, the inlay, the structure, all but the windows and the seats. They are both from school buses, or school bus supply parts anyway

These coaches, originally built from the ground up at the Walt Disney Studios, were pulled by the E.P. Ripley on opening day as part of an 1880s style passenger train. Three of the four coaches retain their original wood floors. Half of the cars retain their original roof lettering (“Disneyland & Santa Fe R.R.”), though the Walt Disney Company once insisted (to a previous private owner) that all references to Disneyland be removed as the coaches were renovated. They all contain their original school bus style seats and school bus style windows (presumably purchased from a school bus manufactory, such as Crown). In fact, the experience of riding in the coaches is much that of riding in a school bus: the seats are a little small for two adults while most of the windows open only halfway.

The four coaches ran at Disneyland from 1955 until the mid-1960s, when they were retired except for peak days. They were replaced with open excursion cars better designed to view the recently installed Primeval World. The new cars were also easier to load and unload, as all passengers on the original coaches passed single file through narrow doors—still their original Chinese red—located at the front and back of each car.

In the early 1990s a private collector, Bill Norred, gave the Walt Disney Company a narrow gauge engine in exchange for the four coach cars and the combine. Eight years later, after Bill Norred passed away, his family sold the four coach cars to Rob Rossi, who then brought them to the Santa Margarita Ranch in central California. In 2005, the coaches were re-introduced to the public as part of a fund-raiser for the local Railroad Museum. Subsequently, they have been included in fundraising events held at the ranch for many nonprofits. It is also possible to rent the ranch and the coaches for a private function, such as a wedding.