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Australasian specials


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#251 nicanary

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Posted 15 July 2014 - 10:13

I tried...but the website strips the images out...

http://www.autopuzzl...p?topic=28560.0

Thanks for trying. I just clicked onto your link and it worked for me - maybe it's because it recognised me as a member. I was under the impression that the public could read the site but not reply unless they were registered.



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#252 D-Type

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Posted 15 July 2014 - 10:16

I think you have to register at Autopuzzles before you can see the pictures.  Quite a few sites work that way.



#253 nicanary

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Posted 15 July 2014 - 10:42

I think you have to register at Autopuzzles before you can see the pictures.  Quite a few sites work that way.

I got my just desserts. One of the editors on AP once told me that any sleuthing was good sleuthing, provided you don't actually cheat. Hey ho......



#254 D-Type

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Posted 15 July 2014 - 16:10

Well, as this one is a "Can you help identify this (I dunno)?" query rather than a "Do you know what this is?" quiz question I don't think you are cheating.



#255 nicanary

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Posted 07 August 2014 - 10:54

Just to let you know the puzzle has been solved - it was Harry Firth's MG TC s/c car, which had been rebodied to look nothing really like an MG.



#256 Dick Willis

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Posted 29 December 2014 - 04:34

As there are only a few copies left of the fifth and final edition of my book, Optimism on Australian Specials, I thought I should alert TNF watchers who still haven't obtained a copy.

 

For further details go the The Historical Research section of TNF, "The First Australian Coopers" posts 125 and 147.



#257 Dick Willis

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Posted 10 January 2015 - 22:29

Here's one for you Aussie special sleuths, on the top left corner of page 84 of today's Sunday Tele, who can name the sleek blue 1950s Aussie special pictured ?



#258 Catalina Park

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Posted 11 January 2015 - 00:29

I don't know what it is but I will post a copy here to help those that won't help Rupert.

Mystery01.jpg

#259 Dick Willis

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Posted 11 January 2015 - 00:55

Thanks for posting the pic, maybe Parkes is a clue.



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#260 john medley

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Posted 11 January 2015 - 04:10

Apart from the colour, looks remarkably original: RVM



#261 Dick Willis

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Posted 11 January 2015 - 04:21

Well done John, but from you I wouldn't have expected anything less. Perhaps you would be good enough to tell us who made the body and were similar bodies ever fitted to any other cars and was the RVM's body ever fitted to another car ?



#262 Catalina Park

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Posted 11 January 2015 - 04:42

Riley based?

#263 Wirra

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Posted 11 January 2015 - 05:31

... maybe Parkes is a clue.

 

Elvis, or Ron Evans?



#264 Ray Bell

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Posted 11 January 2015 - 12:06

Wasn't there a connection between this car and the Petticoat Special?

#265 Dick Willis

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Posted 11 January 2015 - 19:46

I've been waiting for our friend, Mr Medley to enlighten us with more  details on the RVM, plus its current whereabouts and what mechanicals lay beneath that body.



#266 Ray Bell

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Posted 11 January 2015 - 20:00

He might be busy...

I wonder if it's at Daroogalbie? I've seen some interesting stuff there.

#267 john medley

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Posted 11 January 2015 - 20:08

Nice (and timely) line, Wirra

 

I first sighted the RVM Riley in a Redfern workshop as I walked from Redfern station to Sydney University where I was a student. Custom Display Industries was the name of the business which put the new-fangled fibreglass body on the car. I recall Graham Howard photographing the RVM there. Ron Evans raced it, first with a body looking so like the Petticoat Hudson body that it probably was the Petticoat Hudson body, then the body shown in Daly Telegraph pic, yellow painted. Riley-engined, the car was never quick but certainly consistent and won a division 3 race or two. When Ron Evans moved to Parkes he sold the car there, I reckon perhaps to the father of the woman shown in the pic. It still exists, I think with Arthur Babbington

 

Bodies from the same mould were put on other cars including Jim Johnson's MGTC crashed at Coonabarabran 1957, Max Williams' Ecurie Lismore MGTC, and the much-photographed Bruderlin and Thomas MGs, one of which was owned of course by none other than Dick Willis.



#268 Ray Bell

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Posted 11 January 2015 - 20:41

What was the connection with the Petticoat?

Quickie? Or Bill Ford?

#269 Dick Willis

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Posted 12 January 2015 - 03:02

Ray, again John knows this better than I as he was there, but briefly, my understanding is the f'glass body for the RVM wasn't ready for the Easter Bathurst, 1955 so the body off the Petticoat was temporarily fitted to it and Bill Ford drove it, winning the C Grade race. For the October 1955 meeting it had the new body, as in the pic above, fitted. 



#270 Ray Bell

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Posted 12 January 2015 - 11:59

What I have never understood is just why Ford drove the car that meeting...

Obviously he wasn't intending purchasing it, the Hudson should surely have been available to him. Why?

#271 Dick Willis

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Posted 12 January 2015 - 19:55

Probably a "deal" I'll lend you the body off my car but I want to drive it, I don't want anyone else damaging my precious rag body !



#272 Ray Bell

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Posted 12 January 2015 - 21:09

Well, Evans drove the car in that form at Mt Druitt, it seems...

It really sounds like a Quickie deal to me, perhaps he was trying to convince Bill that he needed a more modern car? And maybe Evans didn't like Bathurst, he had problems in practice for the October '55 meeting and then failed to start the early race, though he did apparently start in the main event. Then he appears to have not turned up at all for the Easter meeting of 1956.

#273 Dick Willis

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Posted 13 January 2015 - 01:05

Could it be that Evans didn't have a full licence to entitle him to race at Bathurst ? Was that a requirement in 1955 ?



#274 Ray Bell

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Posted 13 January 2015 - 02:34

It would seem unlikely...

He did race that car at Mt Druitt. Bathurst at that time was one of only two circuits in NSW, so I don't think there'd be that strict restriction, certainly not in early '55. Perhaps that came in after the fatal crash?

Got the book today too, Dick, thanks!

#275 Ray Bell

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Posted 14 January 2015 - 03:07

There you go, faulty knowledge and memory fail me again!

There were four circuits in NSW at the time... Parramatta Park still ran once a year (and just once more?) and Orange was on, I think, three times a year.

So I looked diligently for mention of these issues. I found that Bill Ford ran the Petticoat Special at Hawkesbury Hill 'after struggling all week to put it together' without its petticoat. This must have been before the May 29 Mt Druitt as it was running there in the same form, but it has missed the previous Mt Druitt on Anzac Day.

July 17 saw both drivers and both cars appear at Mt Druitt, the Petticoat still undressed. On June 13 Ford raced at Parramatta Park with a NEW canvas body on the Hudson. There appears to be no report of the June or August Mt Druitts but in July Ford won a couple of races in the Hudson. He also took FTD at Foley's Hill in August.

Both cars are mentioned at the September 4 meeting with Evans actually scoring a couple of Group B wins. There is no mention, however, of whether or not the car had yet been fitted with the fibreglass body.

I went back also through '54 magazines and found no mention of Evans anywhere, though I did find that his firm had sponsored a Mt Druitt race late in '54.