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Pro sports car build - Last of the solid front axle


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#1 Jairus

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Posted 23 July 2016 - 10:21 AM

I personally discovered slot cars in 1970.
By 1972 I was building my first car with a soldering gun and electrical solder. (Hey.... what did I know?)
It ran like crap because it's hard to thrive in a hobby when the local track closes down 2 years later.
Because of that I scored hugely by collecting tons of cars and parts and controllers off my friends who gave or traded off their bits.
It was the start of a true sickness.

But, 'nuff about me.

 

10 years ago Adam Friedman handed me this chassis.
IMG_3644pro-vi.jpg

 

It was nicely built but some of the joints were "repaired" with a too cool for school soldering iron leaving way more solder on it than should be there.
Plus pans and tongue were bowed from too many wall hits.  Also, all the hinges were rusted solid so there was no movement left.
I totally pulled it apart, cleaned up the excess solder, flattened the pans, re soldered all the joints and sanded down all the flat surfaces to ensure they were FLAT!

 

I'm reasonably sure it dates from 1970 to 1973 just prior to the big push for ISO and floppy front wheel mounting.  But since there are no markings on the pans denoting a builder.  That's still just a guess.
Front and rear are set up for 3/32" axles.  W.B. is weird at 3 13/16".


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#2 Jairus

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Posted 23 July 2016 - 10:34 AM

This Lee Gilbert car from 1971 racing report found in Miniature Auto Racing newspaper is fairly close enough.  Other cars in that paper used spring steel chassis and other differences, but the architecture of the chassis tend to be very similar to this one leading me to narrow down my search enough to late 1971.

 

LeeGilbert-vi.jpg
 

Many of the racers in that 2nd Southwest Shootout held in Tucson, AZ ran Kirby Ferrari 512 bodies so that is the one I choose.
IMG_3646pro-vi.jpg

 

Now... to figure out what best to paint it? 
Hmmmmmm...

Maybe like this:
DaveBloomAdvertising-vi.jpg

 

The above is a Dave Bloom advertisement found in the same paper. ;-)

 


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#3 Jairus

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Posted 23 July 2016 - 10:57 AM

Some of the other parts collected:
A nice "C" can motor with fresh matching magnets and an NOS RehCo 24s arm.
(Pinion is wrong, ratio will be 9/43 using a Faas spur gear soon to arrive in the mail.)

IMG_3645pro-vi.jpg

 

A set of Associated front and rear wheels with 3/32" axle bore.
The rears are NOS shod with fresh JK Natural because I actually want to run this car.
The fronts are beautiful re-pops provided by DC-65X.

 

IMG_3650pro-vi.jpg

 

Lastly NOS Jet Flag with related hardware.

IMG_3647pro-vi.jpg

Guess it's time to start painting....
B:)


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#4 TSR

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Posted 23 July 2016 - 09:09 PM

Jairus,
Your chassis was built between 1972 and 1973.
Evidence is from the drop-arm twin springs and their 'hooks' hanging from the front axle. For example, the Gilbert chassis shown has a single spring on one side, its stop being a .032' cross bar joining both sets of main rails, ahead of the front-axle tubing brackets.
The twin springs simply did not exist before, and were short lived as by 1973 technology was evolving where solid front axles were being replaced by other means of hanging the wheels.
If I had to bet on where this chassis was built, I'd say NorCal, around San Francisco, as its inspiration comes directly from Southern California with features typical of what NorCal racers used.



#5 Jairus

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Posted 23 July 2016 - 09:21 PM

I put the twin springs on. The single .039 originally on there was too stiff.
Furthermore it was bent and the solder puddle huge!
So I went with one .032 but that was too soft.  Two .025 seemed just right.
It arrived in my hands with only one. (Suppose I could go back to the single .032.)

 

Near as I can tell from the other photos, specifically John Anderson's car ... there was at least one that had two springs in June '71.
JohnAnderson-vi.jpg
 

 

Not saying you are wrong Philippe.  You lived that era while I was building model cars.
The double hoop on the front axle however was not replaced and suggested duel springs.
So that is what I went with.
1972 was still a good year! :victory:


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#6 Jairus

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Posted 23 July 2016 - 09:41 PM

Well now!
Mail had a package for me so I put the drawing I was working on aside and started back working on this project.
Package had a few NOS Faas gears.
Most of the racers in the report ran 9/45, providing a 5 to 1 ratio.
Only John Anderson ran a 4.8 to 1.  A 9/43 provides 4.7 which is in the range but not korrect.  I'll keep my eyes on eBay for a while longer.
And... yes, the ARP angled pinion is not right.  But the mesh is sooooo smoooooth, for now and the only 64p 9 tooth I have for now.
IMG_3652pro-vi.jpg


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#7 TSR

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Posted 23 July 2016 - 10:27 PM

Jairus, the dual hoop retaining the dual springs was my own little contribution to the hobby in 1971. Copies appeared in early 1972. However there was a bit more trickery to that. As you can see on the chassis below, the reason of their existence was a center pivot soldered on the front-axle tube (not that visible in this picture), allowing the center section to flex BELOW the drop-arm level, something impossible before. But copycat often failed to seize that important detail worth a good 3/10th on a King track, as well as the bends on the drop arm springs that allowed to adjust their tension and "balance" the chassis.

4.jpg

The pivot is more visible on this different car, from the same year. There you can see that the front axle is a bit askew, requiring more adjustment of one of the springs. Depending on the track, a true advantage could be gained by tweaking this system:

bulk 251.jpg

By mid 1972, lots of chassis offered similar features, but few were shown to offer greater performance.
The more I look at your car, the more I believe it to be a product of C&W in San Francisco.



 


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#8 S.O. Watt

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Posted 23 July 2016 - 11:50 PM

That's my steel car I set up for John for that race. I still have it. That chassis was cut out and built in like 9/70, right after returning from the Parma NCC. I raced that beauty in a lot of races and won a lot of those. I probably changed the plumber mounts from the frame to the drop arm and back and forth several times. 

 

The main rails are .042 steel while the drop arm is .040. Sometimes the wire connecting the front of the rails and was used as the up stop was mounted to the steel flat, other times above the legs of the .062 axle supports.....

 

But that's a different story ;)

I put the twin springs on. The single .039 originally on there was too stiff.
Furthermore it was bent and the solder puddle huge!
So I went with one .032 but that was too soft.  Two .025 seemed just right.
It arrived in my hands with only one. (Suppose I could go back to the single .032.)

 

Near as I can tell from the other photos, specifically John Anderson's car ... there was at least one that had two springs in June '71.
JohnAnderson-vi.jpg
 

 

Not saying you are wrong Philippe.  You lived that era while I was building model cars.
The double hoop on the front axle however was not replaced and suggested duel springs.
So that is what I went with.
1972 was still a good year! :victory:

 


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#9 Jairus

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Posted 24 July 2016 - 07:43 AM

Tom, did you install one or two drop arm springs?  From that photo is almost looks like there are two... :unknw:


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#10 dc-65x

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Posted 24 July 2016 - 09:27 AM

Hi Jairus,
 
I was familiar with a lot of what Adam had going on but certainly not all. I don't remember him mentioning that chassis. Nice to see it being put to use! :good:
 

And... yes, the ARP angled pinion is not right.  But the mesh is sooooo smoooooth, for now and the only 64p 9 tooth I have for now.

 
Don't worry. A modern Sonic 64P pinion will mesh nice and smooth too.........and will "look the business".  :)
 

 

 

..............................A set of Associated front and rear wheels with 3/32" axle bore.

The rears are NOS shod with fresh JK Natural because I actually want to run this car.
The fronts are beautiful re-pops provided by DC-65X.

IMG_3650pro-vi.jpg

 

 

 

Steve Okeefe came up with the idea for the beautiful repop Associated front wheels - tires. I just refined it in CAD.


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#11 S.O. Watt

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Posted 24 July 2016 - 11:41 AM

Yes, I had used two springs on the drop arms of several cars as early as late '70. However, my "rocker" action was done differently than PDLs. I just used either a piece of tape between the drop arm and stop when chassis and drop arm thicknesses were close, or a piece of wire soldered to the cross piece when it was much further away when the parts had a large mis-match in thicknesses. 

 

The two chassis I have here at home still do exhibit some rocker action. One has evidence of solder still for a 2nd spring, the other has file marks from removing solder (I assume, it has been a few years....)

)

Tom, did you install one or two drop arm springs?  From that photo is almost looks like there are two... :unknw:


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#12 Jairus

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Posted 28 July 2016 - 06:19 PM

Update:
Finally finished the chassis this afternoon.  Body is still in the paint shop and not quite done so that will have to wait.
IMG_3653pro-vi.jpg

 

Rick is right... the Sonic 9t pinion works just as smoothly as the ARP angled pitch. 

 

IMG_3654pro-vi.jpg

 

I made a brass glue shield but... didn't like how it messed up the clean look of the chassis so going to leave it off.
And it's not like everyone used one or that one is even needed today.

IMG_3657pro-vi.jpg

 

This evening I'll get back to hand lettering the body and cutting out some period korrect wings. B:)


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#13 S.O. Watt

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Posted 29 July 2016 - 09:06 AM

Here's another "dual spring" chassis, 12/70. 1st ever Blue King world record for Camen. The virtual twin steel chassis to the prior posted pix of my car. This one was originally built for John Cukras but given to Joel "Monty" Montague when John bowed out of racing.

 

Joel_record car.jpeg


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#14 Jairus

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Posted 29 July 2016 - 09:11 AM

Sweet Tom!
Can I have it?
Just kidding, but... my very next project is going to be a steel chassis!  Got all the parts ready, just need the time.


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#15 Jairus

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Posted 10 December 2016 - 12:24 PM

Wow, 5 months since the last post?  
I painted this sometime in early August... but never finished because life got in the way.
This morning I decided I really need to finish something before I start yet ANOTHER project.  So buckled down and bulletproofed and attached period side fences.

 

In early 1972 there was no real plan for side fences, but I believe the rules still required the rear spoiler be no higher than 1/2".
So it stands to reason that the side fences would also no taller.

 

IMG_3831pro-vi.jpg

 

 

I kept the paint scheme similar to what was being done back then.  Colors are Pactra Magenta and warm yellow lacquer backed up with white.

IMG_3832pro-vi.jpg

 

Final pic is at same angle as race reports back then.  

IMG_3833pro-vi.jpg

 

 

Guess I should finish up my Russkit Porsche 906 next then?  

B:)


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#16 welslotcar

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Posted 10 December 2016 - 02:07 PM

Another great story and build.


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#17 Jencar17

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Posted 10 December 2016 - 02:09 PM

:clapping: :clapping: :clapping: :victory: :good:


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#18 Jairus

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Posted 10 December 2016 - 02:18 PM

Thank you!
But now that I read back on what I wrote 5 months ago.  I should change the "power by" to Rehco instead of Certus.
Dang.... work, work, work.  :crazy:


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#19 Eddie Fleming

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Posted 10 December 2016 - 03:47 PM

Great looking build , but I hate magenta paint. Yea I know get over it.  :D


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#20 zipper

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Posted 10 December 2016 - 04:08 PM

Huh - Déjà-vu; almost identical to what I built 44 years ago - happily copied from Miniature Auto Racing (Newspapermagazine) which I subscribed until it faded away 1973. Geezer Mac...


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#21 Horsepower

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Posted 19 December 2016 - 06:28 AM

Geez, that paint is beautiful! Jairus, if you don't mind me asking, how did you get that beautiful teal blue paint job on the motor. I never saw one painted that color. Was this a custom mix or just a rattle can find? Thanks! Keep makin' 'em so staggeringly beautiful! 


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#22 zipper

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Posted 19 December 2016 - 07:01 AM

That color is very near what I got on one setup built by Steube himself years ago; it had self built bus bars.


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#23 Jairus

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Posted 19 December 2016 - 12:37 PM

Thank you guys!  :)

 

Quick little update.  
After re-reading the beginning of this thread I changed the lettering on the body to more correctly reflect the motor.  
Such is the mistakes that happen on projects that take a long time to complete coupled with old age.

IMG_3845pro-vi.jpg


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#24 dc-65x

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Posted 19 December 2016 - 07:09 PM

Looks very nice indeed Jairus!


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#25 Bill from NH

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Posted 19 December 2016 - 08:30 PM

It does look like a great car, Jairus. :)  Not that it matters any, that arm may have been sold with a REHCO label, but it was likely wound by another company. REHCO is still a distributor, but I don't think they ever wound arms. The  REHCO arm I own is Mura green gumball 27/28.


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