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Howie's amazing 1967 Arco coupe/sports car


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#1 dc-65x

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Posted 16 July 2015 - 07:37 PM

Howie Ursaner was dominating at the 1967 Arco Nats. With his car as a Coupe it was TQ and won the race by eight laps...
 
MCJ%20V1N2%20p7-Coupe.jpg
 
... and by simply swapping bodies the car, now a Sports Car, set a new 2-minute qualifying record and another top qualifer mark. That is two TQs out of two races!
 
Through no fault of his own, this rocket ship Sports Car was wrecked before the race even started. Here is Howie telling what happened:
 

There is a great Car Model multipage article on this race posted earlier in this topic. I won the Coupe race and was tied in points with Cozine who had not won a race. The final race was Sports Cars and I was TQ with a 2-minute run. This gave me an extra point to put me in the overall lead. When they called drivers to the race I saw a child put my car on the track and the car was walled and destroyed before I even plugged in my controller. All I had to do was finish fifth to win overall but they did not give me any time to fix the car so it was launching in the bank. That is how he won. Phil won the race. I would have most likely won. Same car as the Coupe, which was pretty unbeatable there.
 
A lot up for grabs, hometown crowd in Atlanta, conspiracy theories abound, they would not give me time to fix my car. They did not want me to win. I was crushed. They were happy. End of story.

 
Both cars used the same chassis shown below:
 
MCJ%20V1N3%20p1%20-%20chassis.jpg
 
The one picture above of the Coupe version and various bare chassis pictures are all the documentation we have of the super fast but ill-fated car. With Howies help Im going to do my best to bring a tribute to the Sports Car version back to life.
 
Lets start with the Car Model magazine and Model Racing Journal coverage of the Arco Nats event:
 
dc1.jpg

dc2.jpg

dc3.jpg

dc4.jpg
 
MCJ V1N2 P1.jpg
 
MCJ V1N2 p3.jpg
 
That's the background, now we need to start building. :dance3:  But, Howie, I need some info about your car.
 
Howie question number 1: What motor did you use?
 
I'm guessing it wasn't a Champion 517 based on this picture:
 
MCJ%20V1N3%20p4-%20chassis.jpg
 
Your car on the left and the Mike Morrissey copy on the right both seem to have a Mabuchi-size endbell bearing hole in the motor bracket.
 
Howie question number 2: What body did you use on your Sports Car?
 
I found this picture that I think my be of the Arco Nats. Some of the cars seem to match those shown in the above pictures from the race... but this is just a guess:
 
scan0234.jpg
 
I see Dynamic Handling Bodies like a Lola T70, Mirage, and McLaren Mk 6 and Mk 3.
 
What do you think, Howie? :)


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#2 Howie Ursaner

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Posted 17 July 2015 - 12:05 AM

Here are a couple of pics from Bob Rule taken at the 1967 Arco Nats.

h1.jpg

 

h2.jpg


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#3 mjsh

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Posted 17 July 2015 - 12:30 AM

Is that Andy Warhol next to Sandy?


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#4 James Wendel

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Posted 17 July 2015 - 01:55 AM

Geez, that body looks awfully familiar... rummaging through box of old stuff in basement...

 

Ah-ha, here it is... looks like it was cut down by a kid.

 

temp 004.JPG


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#5 tonyp

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Posted 17 July 2015 - 05:49 AM

Not to get off subject, but the picture of the NASCAR Howie ran in that issue is possibly the only shot of a Bob Emott inline. Bob loaned his car to Howie to take the chase for the title.
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"And if my thought-dreams could be seen they'd probably put my head in a guillotine. But it's alright, Ma, it's life, and life only." - Dylan

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#6 John Streisguth

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Posted 17 July 2015 - 06:04 AM

Um... where is that pic? I see PvA's car, but not Howie's...


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#7 tonyp

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Posted 17 July 2015 - 07:33 AM

It's on the missing page from Model Car Journal posting.

"And if my thought-dreams could be seen they'd probably put my head in a guillotine. But it's alright, Ma, it's life, and life only." - Dylan

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#8 MSwiss

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Posted 17 July 2015 - 08:13 AM

Tony,

Did Bob's Stocker chassis have antlers for the wheel wells?

I vaguely remember seeing them on other chassis, but not as ornate/less cagey.

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#9 tonyp

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Posted 17 July 2015 - 08:17 AM

I have it on my laptop I'll post it when I get a chance.

"And if my thought-dreams could be seen they'd probably put my head in a guillotine. But it's alright, Ma, it's life, and life only." - Dylan

1965 "Evil Bucks Racer" Team
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First IM Nationals Champion
Arco Champion
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2016 ORS Anglewinder Constructors Championsh
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#10 tonyp

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Posted 17 July 2015 - 08:19 AM

Mike - yes. They had real thin bodies and needed them to keep the body off the tires.


"And if my thought-dreams could be seen they'd probably put my head in a guillotine. But it's alright, Ma, it's life, and life only." - Dylan

1965 "Evil Bucks Racer" Team
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First IM Nationals Champion
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2016 ORS Anglewinder Constructors Championsh
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#11 tonyp

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Posted 17 July 2015 - 08:28 AM

image.jpg
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"And if my thought-dreams could be seen they'd probably put my head in a guillotine. But it's alright, Ma, it's life, and life only." - Dylan

1965 "Evil Bucks Racer" Team
Revtech Team Trinity
Retro East co-founder
American King track single lap world record holder & 40 minute total lap record
First IM Nationals Champion
Arco Champion
Car Model Magazine Series Amateur Champion
2016 ORS Anglewinder Constructors Championsh
ip


#12 tonyp

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Posted 17 July 2015 - 08:37 AM

Not to get off subject too much but the Chris Vitucci car is probably an Emott. These are the only inlines I have ever seen.

 

tp1.jpg


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"And if my thought-dreams could be seen they'd probably put my head in a guillotine. But it's alright, Ma, it's life, and life only." - Dylan

1965 "Evil Bucks Racer" Team
Revtech Team Trinity
Retro East co-founder
American King track single lap world record holder & 40 minute total lap record
First IM Nationals Champion
Arco Champion
Car Model Magazine Series Amateur Champion
2016 ORS Anglewinder Constructors Championsh
ip


#13 tonyp

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Posted 17 July 2015 - 08:40 AM

I remember going to that first Car Model race and was amazed how fast Howie's car, pictured, and Sandy's were. We may have been just as well running Cox cars. I was impressed, made me want to build better.


"And if my thought-dreams could be seen they'd probably put my head in a guillotine. But it's alright, Ma, it's life, and life only." - Dylan

1965 "Evil Bucks Racer" Team
Revtech Team Trinity
Retro East co-founder
American King track single lap world record holder & 40 minute total lap record
First IM Nationals Champion
Arco Champion
Car Model Magazine Series Amateur Champion
2016 ORS Anglewinder Constructors Championsh
ip


#14 Uncle Fred

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Posted 17 July 2015 - 10:07 AM

The idler gear car in the picture was mine. I was annoyed with Charlie Harris that my name wasn't mentioned. The names in the Dyna Wind photo are backwards as well with me on the right...


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#15 dc-65x

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Posted 17 July 2015 - 10:13 AM

Not to get off subject, but the picture of the NASCAR Howie ran in that issue is possibly the only shot of a Bob Emott inline. Bob loaned his car to Howie to take the chase for the title.

 
That awesome stock car chassis will be a subject for a future project, Tony. :) I've got a Du-Bro NASCAR Fairlane body with all the neato racing details, not just a street car body. The Du-Bro probably isn't as thin as the Champion bodies raced at the time but it's all I've got and it sure looks the part! It looks like I can get a 3" track with the tires inside the body as long as I use the "loops" around the tires at each corner like the original chassis.
 
For this project I need a jig motor and Howie hooked me up with what to use:
 

I can tell you now it was a Russkit 16D with an arm I wound with shimmed Arco 33 magnets. I can come up with more details I am sure.

 
I'll show some possible motor components soon...
 
As for the vintage Dynamic Handling Bodies I have that are shown in my picture, the wheel arches are factory trimmed so the wheelbase is set. The Mirage and McLaren Mk 6 are both 4". The Lola T70 and McLaren Mk 3 are closer to 3-7/8". All are 3" wide and the guide leads vary a bit.
 
Dynamic also made these bodies with the wheel arches untrimmed so the wheelbases could be fudged a bit.
 
These bodies are also butyrate plastic and require a non-lacquer paint and special handling as they are quite fragile... most things as old as these things are fragile. :crazy:
 
Another way to go for this car would be to use a Lexan TrueScale Dynamic Lola T70 reproduction body...


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#16 Half Fast

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Posted 17 July 2015 - 10:37 AM

Who built Howie's frame? Sandy, Bob E, or ???

 

Cheers,


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#17 MSwiss

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Posted 17 July 2015 - 11:24 AM

Howie.
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#18 S.O. Watt

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Posted 17 July 2015 - 12:26 PM

That would be a very young Bryan Warmack.

Is that Andy Warhol next to Sandy?


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#19 Uncle Fred

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Posted 17 July 2015 - 12:47 PM

What's really interesting is that was more than 47 years ago...  :o 


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#20 Half Fast

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Posted 17 July 2015 - 01:02 PM

Tempus Fugit, Fred!

 

Cheers,


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#21 TSR

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Posted 17 July 2015 - 01:26 PM

1) The Chaparral 2F body is not, as the MCJ said, a Champion body; it was a Dynamic product. 

 

2/)The chassis Howie used may not be entirely "original". It looks like it could have been a modified Cobra production frame, using a different drop arm and added side floppies. I will post a picture of the chassis in question soon. The chassis was also produced by Ferret and Phaze III during the evolution/convolution of the three brands.

 

Interestingly, and thanks to Howie, I recently (in the past week!) had a very nice conversation with the very person who built all the chassis for Cobra at the time this race was held...
 



#22 Howie Ursaner

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Posted 17 July 2015 - 02:45 PM

Philippe,

 

This is NOT a production frame. I built this in my bedroom in Forest Hills just like the others I built. Cobra if anything used this basic design to build theirs. They were paying me a lot of money for something.

 

I never in my life ran one of their abortions they called frames so this is ridiculous and totally insane. This will give Sandy a big laugh.


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#23 Uncle Fred

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Posted 17 July 2015 - 02:56 PM

I wondered about that! Those pre-fab chassis were worthless. :laugh2:


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#24 TSR

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Posted 17 July 2015 - 03:23 PM

Most of the Cobra chassis made after Roy Crawley came in the company are and were junk, but the original Cobra chassis were well built by a single individual named David Caldiero.
The later chassis were built outside the Cobra works by a man called Lou Atchison and those were the well-known piles you see all over today, that need entire re-soldering.

Going back to Howie's chassis, I will post the picture of the stock Cobra chassis for comparison. If Howie indeed built his own from scratch, he would have used the very same framework, motor mount, center section, exacting main rails configuration, etc. If Howie says he built it from scratch, I guess he did, but the inspiration is very evident.

What was definitely added over the Cobra design are more half rails at the back, the floppies (the Cobra chassis does not have any), an entirely new drop arm (the Cobra arm is made of brass plate), and the side plates are trimmed at the back for tire clearance.

In any case, Howie was stolen the "Grand Champion" title from sabotage, by a person who took one of his cars from impound and placed it on the track, which broke the guide. Howie had to repair the car within racing time, which was to say the least, not too kosher from the Champion boys who organized the race. Cozine had to win...



#25 Howie Ursaner

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Posted 17 July 2015 - 03:48 PM

They paid me so they could copy my chassis... David Caldiero would be the first to tell you I never even looked at or ever touched anything he built. Those chassis were actually a big joke to anyone in the know. I certainly never knew anyone that ever ran one. LOL.

When the car crashed before the race it actually bent it all over. I desperately tried to do whatever I could in the few minutes I had. It was severely damaged when I started the race and launched to break the guide.


Howie Ursaner





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