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#1 O Volante

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Posted 13 June 2003 - 09:05

There is something I find a little confusing: Between the 4CL and the 4CLT/48, Maserati has apparently build two cars designated 4CLT. My understanding is that these had already "modern" chassis farmes - hence 'CLT ' - like the later 4CLT/48, but retained outward the "old" appearance of the 4CL.
Questions:
- Were there other known differences between 4CL, 4CLT/48 and 4CLT?
- Which s/n for these two cars?
- What happened to them after Villoresi and Ascari (for Ambrosiana) and Farina (for Milan?) had raced them?
Many thanks, all help is very much appreciated!

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#2 Vitesse2

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Posted 13 June 2003 - 10:03

I queried this with Alessandro Silva a little while ago - as I understand it, it's his opinion that the original 4CLT designation was actually an invention of the British press, or more specifically Rodney Walkerley, and that it was never an official Maserati type number. He's found no references to "4CLT" in contemporary Italian reports.

And the normally unreliable Pritchard book on Maserati uses the 4CLT designation too, probably with Walkerley's report of the Marne GP as its source. Make of that what you will!

#3 O Volante

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Posted 13 June 2003 - 10:32

Many thanks for the fast reply, Vitesse2! Indeed, Alessandro's reasoning makes much more sense than what I had read ...

#4 David Beard

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Posted 13 June 2003 - 11:39

Originally posted by Vitesse2

And the normally unreliable Pritchard book on Maserati uses the 4CLT designation too, probably with Walkerley's report of the Marne GP as its source. Make of that what you will!


I nearly bought that book the other day...is it that bad?

#5 Vitesse2

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Posted 13 June 2003 - 11:57

Originally posted by David Beard


I nearly bought that book the other day...is it that bad?


Pretty much a cut 'n' paste from British magazines of the time - I don't think he did much original research or fact checking - it's unapologetically Anglo-centric. And a BB search using his name will reveal rather a lot of criticism of it especially on 250Fs, A6s and 8CTFs.

To be fair, his "Competition Cars of Europe" is a better book.

#6 robert dick

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Posted 13 June 2003 - 12:29

Putting the tubolare designation aside, it seems nevertheless that in 1947 two 4 CLs appeared with two-stage roots blower, a tubular frame (or the original channel frame stiffened by some tubular construction) and the older, original 4 CL bodywork, whereby Ernesto Maserati still had his hand in the design (Massimino alone being responsible for the 4 CLT).
If this is correct, it would be interesting to clarify the technical evolution from CL to CLT.

#7 Vitesse2

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Posted 13 June 2003 - 12:54

The first two-stage supercharged car appears to have been Sommer's Milano example at Nice, which arrived only half an hour before practice. Sommer's and Bira's Milano cars at Monza are both supposed to have been 2-stage 4CLs, Villoresi's a 2-stage Ambrosiana 4CLT :confused:

There are also references to Parnell driving a Milano single-stage 4CLT at Lausanne..... :confused: :confused:

Alessandro might be able to shed more light on this, but he's away at the moment.

#8 Adam F

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Posted 13 June 2003 - 17:37

Parnell's Lausanne 1947 car was the same car as that driven by Raymond Sommerat Milan a month earlier. This was a Scuderia Milan-modified 4CL with twin stage supercharging.
This car is pictured in Crump & Box's Maserati book on page 276. (sorry, I'm not able to scan the photo)

#9 marat

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Posted 15 June 2003 - 07:59

If Vitesse 2 is correct, the bad journalists are the French who have built following story:
4CLT appeared at Reims july 1947 driven by Alberto Ascari.
It had the new "Tubolare" chassis, the improved engine but the old body.
Farina won the 1948 Monaco GP driving the 4CLT, an other 4CLT (Scuderia Ambrosiana) finished 8th driven by Clemar Bucci.
According to those journalists, the 4CLT/48 was the car with new body, first raced and winner in San Remo.
To conclude the 4CLT/50 were the last cars built, with improved engine.

#10 Hans Etzrodt

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Posted 15 June 2003 - 10:46

TYPE 4CL
Production period 1939-1947
24 (or 26) frames produced
Frame: two longitudal members with cross members in light alloy
Front suspension: torsion bars and friction dampers
Carburation: forced by one roots compressor
Carburetor: Weber 45 DCO on compressor intake
Compression ratio 6.5:1
220 HP @ 8000 RPM

TYPE 4CLT
Production period 1946
1 frame produced, #1583 completed end of 1946.
Frame: made of round tubing, called 4CLT (T = tubular frame)
Front suspension: same as the old 4CL
Carburation and carburetor: same as the old 4CL; 220 HP @ 8000 RPM
This car was sent with Villoresi to Argentinia end of 1946 and returned to Europe on July 6, 1947 at the Marne GP with Ascari as driver.
A second 4CLT appeared in 1948, frame #1592, equipped with a double compressor, driven by Farina.

TYPE 4CLT/48
Production period 1948-1950
20 frames produced.
Frame: tubular with longitudinal and cross members
Front suspension: coil springs and Houdaille hydraulic shock absorbers
Carburation: forced by two roots compressors
Carburetor: Weber 50 DCO (52 DCO) on compressor intake
Compression ratio 6:1
260 HP @ 7000 RPM
Two new cars appeared through the Ambrosia Team at the San Remo GP for Ascari and Villoresi. These cars carried many new innovations, justifying the 4CLT/48 as a radically new car.

Source: Luigi Orsini & Franco Zagari in MASERATI a complete history; 1980

#11 Vitesse2

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Posted 15 June 2003 - 11:33

So, if Orsini and Zagari are correct, it looks to me like the British and French press were unaware that the car had raced in Argentina. Walkerley called it "a new-type Maserati with tubular frame" in his race report. Pritchard says it was "the first of the 4CLT cars", which of course he could have construed from Walkerley's text.

#12 marat

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Posted 15 June 2003 - 16:20

Important is that CTL designation is correct.
If the CTL raced first in Argentina, it changes little to the story and if the Reims race was only
their first european race, what Walkerley and Pritchard wrote is not false.

#13 alessandro silva

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Posted 01 July 2003 - 13:19

I maintain that 4CLT was not a factory designation for c/n 1583, albeit the chassis was made of smaller section tubes hence the notion "tubular".
I maintain also that in contemporary Italian press you would not find that designation at all.
I admit that I had overlooked Orsini-Zagari, a book that I have lost since many years, but I think that they use 4CLT for 1583 for singling out the first small-diameter tube chassis.
As a matter of fact the book by Tabucchi on Maserati, which came out last month, and it is much more updated than Orsini-Zagari, lists 1583 to 1591 as 4CL.
I confirm that 1583 was the chassis raced by Villoresi at the Temporada 1947. He was then returned to the factory in exchage for 1586. 1583 was later bought by Alberto Ascari. I think that it ended in Argentina as 1586 did too.
ALL the 4CL from 1583 (late 1946) to 1591 (late 1947) had chassis made of tubes (of bigger or smaller diameter) no longer of box-members:
1584 Chula
1585 Platé
1586 Villoresi
1587 Platé
1588 Naphtra Course
1589 Aut. Club Arg.
1590 idem
1591 Farina.
4CLT was of course a factory denomination of the "San Remo" car

The Sommer/Milano, Parnell/Lausanne Scuderia Milan car was indeed a special chassis (as Adam says) made of small tubes which served also as lubrication piping (and did not work. It was a Speluzzi's pet idea). It had two-stage s/c in Milan and simple in Lausanne.

Villoresi's 1586 had works two-stage engine during 1947 for sure at Marseille, it is said that Ascari had it at Reims (I have no evidence for that as for other instances in which Villoresi might have had it).
Sommer had the two-stage Speluzzi engine during 1947 at Jersey, Bern, Marseille, Nice at least.

#14 Vitesse2

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Posted 02 July 2003 - 21:00

*bump*

Something strange happening here .... Alessandro's post wasn't showing up on the main page :confused:

#15 robert dick

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Posted 03 July 2003 - 08:00

Originally posted by alessandro silva
ALL the 4CL from 1583 (late 1946) to 1591 (late 1947) had chassis made of tubes (of bigger or smaller diameter) no longer of box-members:


means that basically we have three categories of chassis :
1) the pre-war 4 CLs,
2) the 4 CLs built in 1946 and -47,
3) the 4 CLTs,
whereby all the 4 CLTs had a twin-stage supercharger.

Why was the pre-war channel/box frame cancelled? Was the manufacturer of the channel/box members unable to supply these components after the war? Or was the tubular chassis better/more competitive?
Did these tubular chassis of 1946 and -47 use different (in comparison to pre-war) spring/damper ratings?

#16 alessandro silva

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Posted 03 July 2003 - 09:16

"means that basically we have three categories of chassis :
1) the pre-war 4 CLs,
2) the 4 CLs built in 1946 and -47,
3) the 4 CLTs,
whereby all the 4 CLTs had a twin-stage supercharger. "

Not really:
1) yes
2) the 1946 chassis, c/n 1579, 80, 81 (Sc. Milan) 82 (Guido Barbieri) were - by general consensus - built on pre-war specs.
3) 1583 was in small diameter tubes
4) 1584-1591 (the 1947 chassis) were tubular but not identical (brothers but not twins)

The two-stages engines are not related to the chassis. They were put on and off different cars until the "San Remo" series.

The very recent book by Tabucchi (available at Chaters since April ) is a good model by model book which updates and corrects (which was much needed) the pioneering Crumb-de la Rive Box which is by now obsolete.
Tabucchi asserts that 4CLT was NEVER an official denomination (I would not be so sure) and he writes 4CL(T) - which if universally adopted would be an honourable way out - ONLY for the chassis from 1947 (from c/n 1584 included the entire San Remo series). 1583 is for him a 4CL (though more tubular than some of the following ones!!)

The tubular chassis was of course more rigid, but the problem with the 4CL - besides lubrication - was the rear suspension which was never touched until to c/n 1591 included (Farina's winning car at Monaco, Geneva 1948).

#17 Barry Boor

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Posted 28 February 2010 - 19:48

Does anyone know if there is a definitive list of chassis numbers and owners anywhere on the web?

#18 David McKinney

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Posted 28 February 2010 - 22:49

There probably is, but I don't know about its accuracy

However http://www.oldracingcars.com/f1/1950/ (and ensuing years) would provide a good start

#19 Barry Boor

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Posted 28 February 2010 - 23:00

Actually, David, that just about covers what I was a-lookin' for. Cheers.

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#20 robjohn

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Posted 16 April 2013 - 06:57

This was and still is a great thread, particularly for those of us who've relied for decades on English-language books and more recently websites with articles and race result lists using second and third-hand info.
One thing I haven't seen here (or have missed) is confirmation of the date or chassis number for the introduction of the newer body style, the one we associate with the 4CLT/48 as opposed to the 4CL (T or not) shape with tubular chassis. Did that bodywork first appear on Ascari and Villoresi's cars at San Remo in June 1948, and which chassis were they? Did it start at 1594 or earlier? Oldracingcars.com (a well-researched site) says of 1593: "Shown in Maserati records as Alberto Ascari's early 1948 car." Was that pre-San Remo? Which body did it have?
The San Remo pair are often treated as distinctively new cars. But were they "new" only in having the revised rear suspension and new bodywork? The tubular chassis, front coil springs and two-stage superchargers were obviously earlier.
Robin B

Edited by robjohn, 16 April 2013 - 07:04.


#21 David McKinney

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Posted 16 April 2013 - 08:08

The cars did indeed début at San Remo in 1948 - they were frequently referred to as 'San Remo' Maseratis. Ascari drove 1593 and Villoresi 1594

I think - without checking - that the differences between the 4CLT and the 4CLT/48 were more extensive than you suggest

#22 Doug Nye

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Posted 16 April 2013 - 15:11

Again without checking because this is a busy day I recall Jenks being very insistent about there having been what should be described as a 4CLT/50 as distinct from a 4CLT/48. Whether the designations were 'official' or 'an invention of the press' was of little contemporary concern over the following decade or so. If one mentioned a 'San Remo Maserati' or a 'Maserati 4CLT' almost all enthusiasts could immediately visualise what one intended.

DCN/45

Edited by Doug Nye, 16 April 2013 - 15:12.


#23 robjohn

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Posted 17 April 2013 - 07:09

Thanks David and Doug. I admire your published work, though don't have any on the 4CLT or its period.
I'll take 1593 as the first 4CLT/48. 'Twas just that the "early 1948" description on oldracingcars.com had me wondering if it was a pre-San Remo (June) car.
I've known the 4CLT/48's race history and basic specs for decades and visualise it or a 'San Remo Maserati' like everyone since then. What I didn't know, or had forgotten, until I read this thread for the first time a few days ago was that many of the mechanical developments had been applied to 4CLs in the previous two years.
The 4CLT/50 designation seems to be debated. Paul Parker, in his 1950s In Camera book, appears to say it should apply only to the cars with 1719cc engines entered in the Argentinian races. Do you prefer the year suffix for all the '49 and '50 cars?

On a specific car, I'd like to identify a red 4CLT with gold wheels, #15, photographed in 1949. The photo was on the front cover of a British yearbook, Motor Racing 1950, and shows mechanics in and around the car. I don't have the book but it seems the photo was not identified inside.
I felt the odds were that the photo was taken in Britain, but in ORC (thanks, Allen, Dave et al for that) the only #15 4CLT I found in the four or so 1949 British F1 races was Bira's, in the International Trophy at Silverstone on Aug 20. The only other 4CLT with the number in F1 races that year was Reg Parnell's in the Zandvoort GP on July 31. His cars were often green.
We think of Bira's postwar cars as being blue and yellow. His 4CL and the OSCA were. Is it possible, though, that at least in 1949 the 4CLT, bought from Maserati 11 months before, was still red?
Or was the car in the yearbook photo Parnell's? It has none of the typical Bira markings. However, the wheels that look gold could be the yellow used by Bira and on the other 4CLT run by Enrico Plate (for de Graffenried).
Robin B

Edited by robjohn, 17 April 2013 - 07:14.


#24 David McKinney

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Posted 17 April 2013 - 07:35

Bira sometimes raced 4CLTs for Scuderia Plate and sometimes his own blue and yellow car. Otherwise, without seeing the picture you refer to, I can't add anything

Re the 4CLT/50. Early literature (1970s) make the definition you cited, but it is a fact that from 1950 the cars had slightly modified front ends. Perhaps that is the true definition of the 4CLT/50. That would make the cars built in 1948 and 1949 4CLT/48s, and the later cars 4CLT/50s. Which is why I tend to regard them all as 4CLTs (dismissing the tube-framed 4CLT, for which there seems no firm evidence that more than or one was built)

#25 Barry Boor

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Posted 17 April 2013 - 08:02

This same picture (I assume it's the same one) cropped up very recently on a Slot Car forum.

I am told that the car IS the Bira car but was by then (1949) being run by Platé, though still driven by Bira.

The authority on this is very well respected.

I suspect that Robjohn is the same person who brought the picture up on the other forum. :)

#26 David McKinney

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Posted 17 April 2013 - 10:29

Bira drove a new car in 1950

#27 Roger Clark

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Posted 17 April 2013 - 12:04

(dismissing the tube-framed 4CLT, for which there seems no firm evidence that more than or one was built)

Which cars are you referring to? Is that consistent with post 16 above?

#28 Alan Cox

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Posted 17 April 2013 - 13:33

This same picture (I assume it's the same one) cropped up very recently on a Slot Car forum.

http://img.photobuck...ort/mr19501.jpg

#29 David McKinney

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Posted 17 April 2013 - 13:47

Which cars are you referring to? Is that consistent with post 16 above?

Yes, consistent with Alessandro's exposition regarding 1583

The question is whether 1584-92 were also tube-framed, a statement which is now open to question

#30 David McKinney

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Posted 17 April 2013 - 14:00

... the only #15 4CLT I found in the four or so 1949 British F1 races was Bira's, in the International Trophy at Silverstone on Aug 20. The only other 4CLT with the number in F1 races that year was Reg Parnell's in the Zandvoort GP on July 31.

It's de Graffenried in the car in the photo - perhaps trying Bira's Silverstone car?


#31 Roger Clark

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Posted 17 April 2013 - 16:00

The question is whether 1584-92 were also tube-framed, a statement which is now open to question

What reason have you got for thinking they weren't.

#32 David McKinney

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Posted 17 April 2013 - 17:15

I have been thus advised by an expert in pre-1952 Maseratis whose judgment I trust ;)

#33 robjohn

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Posted 18 April 2013 - 03:59

Yes; that's the photo. Thanks, Alan (+ Barry and David). So it is Bira's car at Silverstone in August, 1949, by which time it was entered by Platé. I knew Bira's 4CLT (1598) was being run for him by Platé in 1949 but assumed Bira still owned it through 1949 and that it would be in his colours, hence my question about this car.
In oldracingcars.com, Platé and Bira got 1607 later, in Nov 1949.

As for evolution of the 4CLs and 4CLTs, I was going by Alessandro Silva's posts, such as the #16 mentioned by Roger. I'm not sure if he was always quoting Tabucchi directly. David's new comment / information on the later 4CLs' chassis is obviously different and significant.
Robin B

Edited by robjohn, 18 April 2013 - 05:26.


#34 Tomas Karlsson

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Posted 18 April 2013 - 09:10

I wouldn't trust that red color if I were you. I guess the person responsible for the cover of the book thought a red car looked better then a light blue.

#35 Alan Cox

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Posted 18 April 2013 - 10:06

I wouldn't trust that red color if I were you. I guess the person responsible for the cover of the book thought a red car looked better then a light blue.

This series of publications was in the habit of using retouched photos for their front covers

#36 robjohn

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Posted 19 April 2013 - 06:45

I didn't detect any retouching but, yes, it's possible. It was a fairly common practice and was carried out by some rather good commercial artists.
Perhaps the gold wheels are a clue. Besides Bira's colours, team-mate de Graffenried's car has distinctly yellow wheels in a 1949 photo in one of Bill Boddy's books. I thought the difference was just different shading in old colour photos, but...
Robin B

Edited by robjohn, 19 April 2013 - 07:16.


#37 HistoryBuff

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Posted 09 May 2013 - 23:45


Dean Jeffries the california customizer, died May 5th. His significance to this thread is that and his Manta Ray show car a pearl white fluid lined bubble topped creation was supposedly built on a Maserati 4CLT chassis he got from his father-in-law who had two of them sitting aroound in his yard in the early to mid 0-60s. Of course Dead never told any reporter what he did with the engine, drivetrain, etc. of the Maser but I was wondering if any Maser collectors think this custom car would be more valuable as a Maserati than a custom car? (I know a Cobra guy who will buy the Weber equipped 289 K-code engine it has in it, a gift to Jeffries from Carroll Shelby after Jeffries painted the first Cobra)

#38 D-Type

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Posted 10 May 2013 - 21:43

Does anyone know what Maserati the Manta Ray was built on. In this 2006 interview Dean Jeffries says it was a prewar Maserati and of course the 4CLT was postwar. But the whole style of the interview is 'anecdotal' rather than 'historically accurate'

#39 HistoryBuff

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Posted 11 May 2013 - 00:15

Dean Jeffries the california customizer, died May 5th. His significance to this thread is that and his Manta Ray show car a pearl white fluid lined bubble topped creation was supposedly built on a Maserati 4CLT chassis he got from his father-in-law who had two of them sitting aroound in his yard in the early to mid 0-60s. Of course Dead never told any reporter what he did with the engine, drivetrain, etc. of the Maser but I was wondering if any Maser collectors think this custom car would be more valuable as a Maserati than a custom car? (I know a Cobra guy who will buy the Weber equipped 289 K-code engine it has in it, a gift to Jeffries from Carroll Shelby after Jeffries painted the first Cobra)


You would have to find out his wife's maiden name to get her father's name to check racing entry lists if he raced it . You could check with Hall of Records downtown LA which has records if Dean was married the first time in LA county. I also vaguely remember the car might have been used in the movie ON THE BEACH which had a racing scene with a few crashes. A real Ferrari was used in that as well and a famous race driver drove it (Phil Hill?)

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#40 David McKinney

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Posted 11 May 2013 - 05:20

Two 4CLTs were used by 20th Century Fox in 1954 for the movie known in some countries as The Racers and in others as Such Men Are Dangerous, and were subsequently acquired by Tom Carstens. Whether or not he was Jeffries's father-in-law I've never been sure

#41 raceannouncer2003

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Posted 11 May 2013 - 06:33

Two 4CLTs were used by 20th Century Fox in 1954 for the movie known in some countries as The Racers and in others as Such Men Are Dangerous, and were subsequently acquired by Tom Carstens. Whether or not he was Jeffries's father-in-law I've never been sure


There is no mention of Jeffries as a son-in-law in Carstens' obit.

Vince H.


#42 David McKinney

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Posted 11 May 2013 - 09:16

Thanks Vince. A couple of years ago I tried without success to find who Carstens had sold all the Fox cars to. Presumably the 4CLTs went to Jeffries's father-in-law, or some interim party

#43 ReWind

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Posted 11 May 2013 - 09:48

You would have to find out his wife's maiden name to get her father's name to check racing entry lists if he raced it . You could check with Hall of Records downtown LA which has records if Dean was married the first time in LA county.

@HistoryBuff:
According to this source Dean Jeffries' first marriage was to Judy Maxson. Her dad is described as "a wealthy racing enthusiast".


Edited by Buttoneer, 04 November 2013 - 10:33.
Removed the extra posts from the thread


#44 Michael Ferner

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Posted 11 May 2013 - 14:32

Jeffries's father-in-law was Darwin Maxson, and well known as a Sprint Car car owner going back to Ascot Speedway in the thirties, but I don't think I have ever heard that he would have been involved with the Maser-to-MantaRay story. FWIW, the donor cars were, apparently, 4CLT/48 chassis numbers '1598' and '1601', the two Platè-Maseratis.

#45 D-Type

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Posted 11 May 2013 - 21:36

Well, the two ex- 20th Century Fox Maserati Platés sound likely candidates for being the basis of the Manta Ray even if they weren't prewar as the Motor Trend Classic interview quotes Dean Jeffries saying they were.

Edited by D-Type, 14 May 2013 - 09:19.


#46 David McKinney

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Posted 11 May 2013 - 21:56

No, not pre-war cars, but at least one was a pukka 4CLT - if not both

#47 Michael Ferner

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Posted 12 May 2013 - 08:34

And what, pray, would it have been if not a "pukka 4CLT"? :confused:

#48 David McKinney

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Posted 12 May 2013 - 10:09

I presumed D-Type was referring to the two F2 Plate-Maseratis which - as I'm sure you know - were 4CLTs with shortened chassis and six-cylinder engines. And therefore not 'pukka'. I know one of the cars that ended up with Jeffries was an original 4CLT (with Borano mods) but am not sure whether the other was an F2 version

#49 Michael Ferner

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Posted 12 May 2013 - 10:40

How do you know Jeffries had an "original" 4CLT?

#50 David McKinney

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Posted 12 May 2013 - 15:24

Process of elimination, mainly. Fox apparently had a 4CLT as well as the F2 Plate-Maseratis (and three newer monoposto Maseratis). Carstens bought the lot, and it's not altogether clear which two went to Maxson. From US sources, there is reason to believe one of them was a pukka 4CLT