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Fiat S76


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#201 smarjoram

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Posted 04 February 2011 - 14:23

I've started a photo gallery now so you can see some of the parts in a bit more detail...

S76 Flickr Gallery

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#202 robert dick

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Posted 20 June 2011 - 11:20

Duray at Ostende, photos dated 30 November and 3 December 1913:

http://gallica.bnf.f...8/btv1b9042131x
http://gallica.bnf.f...8/btv1b90417234
http://gallica.bnf.f...8/btv1b9042110r
http://gallica.bnf.f...8/btv1b9041562j


#203 eldougo

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Posted 20 June 2011 - 11:34

GREAT pics there Robert. :wave:

#204 smarjoram

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Posted 20 June 2011 - 16:23

Duray at Ostende, photos dated 30 November and 3 December 1913:

http://gallica.bnf.f...8/btv1b9042131x
http://gallica.bnf.f...8/btv1b90417234
http://gallica.bnf.f...8/btv1b9042110r
http://gallica.bnf.f...8/btv1b9041562j

Amazing site. Interesting results if you search for fiat, le mans, grand prix, darracq, renault or cyclecar.

#205 smarjoram

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Posted 17 April 2012 - 10:18

Been a while since anything's been posted here so here's a few recent sketches and photos...

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It doesn't look that different from the previous ones but a lot has happened. Gearbox is in, wooden frame is done, various versions of bodywork have been tried etc etc. Here's a few lovely details...

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Finally, here's a long shot. Anyone have any ideas on what shade of red it should have been?

Edited by smarjoram, 17 April 2012 - 10:26.


#206 bradbury west

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Posted 17 April 2012 - 12:03

I have no particular desire to re-warm this old chestnut, and it is a while since I last read through the thread, but , whilst I am very aware of Duncan Pittaway's mechanical prowess -qv his current cars and the account of his repair of the Bugatti in a blacksmith's shop in France per VSCC magazine-are we to assume that we will ultimately be shown the various components which formed the basis of this restoration?.
I am a bit of a traditionalist in these things, and whilst the in-progress shots and the no doubt countless finished-product shots along with the eulogistic tests and mag articles will be interesting, I always like to see the "before" - the "this is what I started with" shots are always far more telling. That is why I always had so much time for Rodney Felton and his cars. His honesty always ensured that you knew what he had done.
OT a bit, that is one reason why I have always asked to see the remindered parts from the restoration of Multi Union II after it was restored back to a tipo b monoposto.
Usual disclaimers
Roger Lund

Edited by bradbury west, 17 April 2012 - 12:04.


#207 smarjoram

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Posted 17 April 2012 - 13:04

I don't possess a picture of the bent chassis and axles as I didn't know Duncan then. The engine is plain to see. Everything else is either found or manufactured. I'm trying my best to show the parts in detail - and to highlight which are original and which are new. It's all I can do.

#208 Marticelli

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Posted 17 April 2012 - 13:27

Well said Roger. As far as the Multi Union is concerned, I understand the remains have been added to replica Tipo B parts to recreate the 'original' MU, although the clever work of Woolly Worters (who built the car in 1938/39 for Chris Staniland for a fee of £250 plus the Alfa donor car which Chris already owned) is lost for ever.

For my part, my efforts to resurrect the 18HP 1909 Thornycroft supplied new to legendary Australian, Sir Sidney Kidman, details of which have appeared elsewhere on this forum, have struck a new and unexpected problem. Australia has a piece of legislation known as the 'Protection of Movable Cultural Heritage Act'. This is designed to keep articles of cultural value in Australia, and has for example prevented the sale of a famous Silver Ghost overseas. The Australians who sold the remains of Sir Sidney's first car back to the UK met no opposition, because frankly no-one at that point believed that it was genuinely SK's car. They even doubted it was actually a Thornycroft. I now know it unquestionably is his car and I have lots of evidence to prove it.

The considered view of an Australian old vehicle expert to whom I have spoken, is that should I ever wish to sell my Thornycroft, the Aussies will invoke this legislation and claim it back for Australia where it spent most of its life, as its too important to be let out permanently. Maybe the S76 chassis is similarly culturally important and should never have been allowed out of Australia. Nobody disputes the provenance of the engine, but the rest of the car, well that's a fine recreation, but I personally share Roger's doubt that it's any more than that.

Marticelli

#209 bradbury west

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Posted 17 April 2012 - 14:07

I don't possess a picture of the bent chassis and axles as I didn't know Duncan then. The engine is plain to see. Everything else is either found or manufactured. I'm trying my best to show the parts in detail - and to highlight which are original and which are new. It's all I can do.


I hasten to point out that I was not aiming my comments at your goodself, but as a general observation about many so-called restorations, as opposed to re-creations. I could not care less what people do with the latter so long as they tell the truth about the origins, as with restorations. In many cases I have championed exact re-creations since for many of us some of these devices are the nearest we get to the real thing, often long gone or secreted in reclusive collections.
On a personal note, however, I do appreciate your contribution here as your photo- files are excellent as are all of your drawings. It is worth noting, too, I feel, Duncan Pittaway's openness with access to his workshops. I have no doubt that he will reveal all when the time is right.
Roger Lund

Edited by bradbury west, 17 April 2012 - 14:10.


#210 john medley

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Posted 17 April 2012 - 23:24

Wonderful photos, wonderful drawings.

I know that most of us await with awe the noise and the performance of this Beast of Turin

I didnt think I had a great deal of interest in cars built and raced before 1918 -- until this remarkable thread. My search for more detail continues -- a great journey. Thanks all

I received two weeks ago 3 photographs taken 20th May 1931 of that section of the Armidale-to-Kempsey road where the "race to the coast" ended . The photographs show where the alleged Fiat S76/ alleged Lion Peugeot fell down the 60 foot embankment, and the chain driven car inverted in the dry watercourse. The photos were taken by the mother of she (now 90 years of age) who sent them to me, because they walked from their house to the accident site the day after the accident(thank you Dick Willis for the lead). I will be speaking again to the 90 year old today( she recalls that the car was blue...-- before the damage from bushfires and water and lightfingered people)

Shortly after the photos arrived, the indefatigable Brian Lear sent me a "Sydney Morning Herald" news item describing and dating( we think) the accident.

I spoke to the man who in the late 1950s told Stuart Middlehurst(and Bob Chamberlain) that the car was down the embankment in that billygoat country, and to whose place in Armidale the two Victorians went in the early 1960s with the remains so they could discuss what it was. Today I hope to speak to a friend of that man, because those two often drove from Armidale to view the inverted remains in the 1950s

There remain many questions, but this may well put the final nail into some assertions and some refutations made in this thread. Thank you Ivan Saxton, and more

It wasnt a Fiat S76 that crashed in a race to the coast.

I now suspect that it wasnt a Lion Peugeot, either.

More soon


#211 Dick Willis

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Posted 18 April 2012 - 05:22

So what do you think the crashed car was John ?

#212 john medley

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Posted 18 April 2012 - 07:59

Lion Peugeot were "assemblers", like several others of that time. Perhaps they obtained chassis from Arbel, components in special steel from Nerichon Brothers, axles in special steel from Le Moine etc; we know that some cars had Boudreaux-Verdet engines, some from inhouse...

A careful review of specifications and photographs of each 1908 GP des Voiturettes competitor (as an example)shows some of this sameness. Careful reading of the regulations for the same race suggests that sameness was generated by the regulations: even the height of the seats above the ground was mandated.

So, I think I am suggesting that we CAN identify the chassis at Bellbrook as a Lion Peugeot, because it looks like a Lion Peugeot -- but it could look like any number of cars.

One sticking point is the engine: it is not like any Lion Peugeot engine I can find. While I was unsure before, I am now certain it is not a Boudreaux-Verdet 6 valve single. There was no engine like Neville Roberts' engine in the 1908 GP des Voiturettes. As a water-cooled single cylinder fixed head hemispherical combustion chamber twin plug overhead valve(carried in two screw-in cages, valve included angle 87 degrees) probably using pushrods and of approximately 100mm/200mm bore/stroke, to my eye it most closely resembles the 4?cylinder 1904-05 Pipe engine(at least in the cylinder and valve actuation details ) shown as a drawing in Griffith Borgeson's "Twin Cam Engine..."...

So, I can understand the incorrect guesses made 50+ years ago by Stuart Middlehurst and Bob Chamberlain, and in answer to your question all I can guess at this stage is "whoever used an engine with those specifications".Of course, it may help to discover what car Bob Anthony registered in NSW in 1930-31.

Was there ever a single cylinder Pipe? Who copied Pipe's ideas in a single cylinder engine? Who did it early enough to put in a "Lion Peugeot" chassis before ?1910? Or was it inserted to replace the original engine in that chassis?

There is perhaps another complication: even though that one cylinder was found and photographed at the crash site by Stuart Middlehurst in ?1961(and Neville Roberts has those photographs), Nora's 1931 photos appear to show the sump of perhaps a 4 cylinder engine

Is there anyone here on TNF who can look at the Pipe drawing in Borgeson(as above), and hazard a guess re date/details of the single cylinder engine in Neville Roberts' possession?

#213 Ray Bell

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Posted 18 April 2012 - 08:56

This is a puzzle par excellence...

I do hope someone can come up with some of the details that are so necessary to unravel it.

6-valves? In a single I could understand that, but would anyone replicate it cylinder after cylinder in a multi-cylinder engine? Would they see a need to do that?

And when did the list of registered owners of all NSW cars cut out? I've only seen them to about 1914 IIRC.

#214 Marticelli

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Posted 18 April 2012 - 18:09

This is a puzzle par excellence...

Indeed... But the fact remains that the chassis of any racing voiturette of the pre-First War era could not possibly be confused with the chassis of the S 76 unless perhaps it shrunk while lying bent down a ditch beside the road where it crashed... It was indeed a Monster car and appropriately named as such. The Lion Peugeots were fairly delicate things...

Marticelli

#215 Ray Bell

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Posted 18 April 2012 - 20:57

Absolutely correct...

Rust might well have taken its toll into the fifties, of course, but still the overall dimensions would have been evident. Like Roger, I hope progress photos have been taken so the original chassis can be seen.

#216 john medley

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Posted 04 February 2013 - 21:53

September 2012 I placed an ad with photos in "The Automobile". Instant response, on publication day indeed, from England, and a large part of the puzzle solved....

The one cylinder in Neville Roberts' possession comes from a Ferdinand Porsche designed "Prince Henry Trial"Austro Daimler from 1910/1911. There is only one difference in the detail: Neville's engine does not have the screw-on flange which links cylinder to crankcase -- but then this was noted from a print source, never from a photograph. Every other detail is correct, even down to the position of bolt- and rivet-holes in the chassis. I had previously guessed at Austro Daimler, but thanks to Eddie Berrisford's confirming of this, we have certainty. Thanks too to Desmond Peacock who had earlier confirmed that the chassis was not Peugeot or Lion Peugeot.

What Bob Anthony was doing in a 1910"Prince Henry Trial" Austro Daimler on the Armidale-to-Kempsey road in 1931 we still havent fully resolved, but we have found in 1919 car registrations a 25hp Austro Daimler registration number 8974 in the name of John Newton of Kempsey.



#217 Ray Bell

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Posted 05 February 2013 - 04:07

So, if I get this right, John...

The assertion that the S76 chassis came from some speedy run from 'Armidale to the coast' comes from the knowledge that this chassis had laid bent up off the side of that road for decades?

Or is it all some kind of strange mistake where stories got crossed up?

#218 Marticelli

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Posted 05 February 2013 - 07:42

the S76 chassis came from some speedy run from 'Armidale to the coast'....

The fact remains that there is scant chance that a 25HP Austro Daimler chassis could be confused with a 300HP FIAT chassis either! See my post #214 above...

One of the joys of pursuing answers to this puzzle has led me to discover the writings of Francis Rodwell Banks (check him out on Wikipedia) and the remarkable 6 cylinder Stromboli engine he helped develop to power British airships like R100 and 101, and indeed to replace the entirely unsuitable Beardmore marine engines adopted in the absence of something purpose built. The Stromboli had 6 cylinders of 12" bore and 16" stroke and 8 poppet valves disposed around each head, hence 48 valves in total. It had a rating of 1500HP... Maybe some VSCC enthusiast would like to find one and install it in a suitable chassis... Would make the S76 look rather feeble by comparison...

Marticelli

#219 Ray Bell

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Posted 05 February 2013 - 11:34

I like the way you think!

Yes, a very scant chance.

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#220 john medley

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Posted 05 February 2013 - 21:26

What originally caught my attention was the claim that one of the only two S76 Fiats had Australian racing history. I and others carefully checked the records to find nothing, not even the car re-engined(as claimed). Later claims that Duncan Pittaway held photos which showed its Australian racing history have not yet been publicly supported by evidence

Duncan Pittaway says he was told that the chassis he has was S76 Fiat, crashed in a "race" between "Armadale" and the "coast". This is clearly refuted: it was not a Fiat, it was not a race, it was not a race from Armidale to the coast. It is my view that Bob Anthony drove his Austro Daimler not from Armidale but for only 19kms before the accident from his griefstricken passenger's parents' home shortly after the death of his passenger's father

What appears to remain of the mystery are the markings on parts Duncan Pittaway has, the photographs Duncan Pittaway says he has, the precise ownership history of the car crashed at Bellbrook, and which car John Ryder referred to in one of his posts earlier in this thread



#221 andrewjwilliams

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Posted 05 April 2013 - 06:36

Found some more photos of the S76 on Facebook: http://www.facebook....n_id=1334365538

It looks an awesome car, can't wait to see it running. Or hear it for that matter.

#222 275 GTB-4

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Posted 07 April 2013 - 00:31

Gents (and others)

a small deviation....

"Win on Sunday, sell on Monday" is not that new at all (from 1923) :up:

Posted Image

Edited by 275 GTB-4, 07 April 2013 - 10:42.


#223 275 GTB-4

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Posted 07 April 2013 - 10:39

A little European snippet...(Sunday Times Perth, WA Sunday 29 June 1924)

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and could this be the S76 coming into the country? (Barrier Miner Broken Hill Saturday 30 January 1926)

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Edited by 275 GTB-4, 07 April 2013 - 10:40.


#224 Tim Murray

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Posted 07 April 2013 - 11:31

These cuttings refer to 'Mephistopheles', not the S76. 'Mephistopheles' and its visit to Australia have already had several mentions in this thread:

http://forums.autosp...Bmephistopheles

See also the Ernest Eldridge thread:

Ernest Eldridge; a breif history - can anyone add to it?

and here's Doug Nye's vivid description of the time he drove 'Mephistopheles':

http://forums.autosp...w...t&p=1038836

#225 Ray Bell

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Posted 07 April 2013 - 11:48

While that's of some interest, Mick, it's got nothing to do with the S76...

Eldridge took a 1908 chassis (the S 76 was of 1910/1911 vintage) and fitted an aero engine into it after stiffening the chassis with a section of Leyland frame.