Club News, December 1952

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60

We Hear

J. A. H. Wallace, Napleton Grange, Kempsey, Worcs., is restoring a 1922 7-h.p. Wolseley flat-twin light car and seeks data, spares and especially the correct carburetter for it. A Foy-Steel light car has come to light in Norfolk. The winter number of Milestones is a Guest Number of the Guild of Motoring Writers; contributors include Tommy Wisdom, W. F. Bradley, St. J. Nixon, S. C. H. Davis the Guild’s new Chairman, W. Boddy, Charles Fothergill, J. A. Masters and W. McMaster. E. G. Emmett, Bradnor Ho, Kington, Herefordshire is compiling a list of all known G.W.K.s and will be glad to hear from owners of these friction-driven cars. Time last October had a short paragraph about six old-timers, 1903 Cadillac and Oldsmobile, 1912 Stanley Steamer, 1910 American Underslung, 1915 Crane-Simplex and 1906 Mercedes. Ken Purdy’s amusing skit on automatic transmissions, “I’ll Shift for Myself” appeared in the February 1952 issue of Atlantic. In Argosy last July Ralph Stein had an article on America’s “Compact Cars,” the Henry J. Corsair, Willys Aero and Nash Rambler. His opening remarks depreciated his Riley in terms of lack of spares availability and servicing.

Life recently had an article on Claud H. Foster, “The millionaire inventor of a musical automobile horn and shock-absorber.” From an accompanying illustration it seems that the first exhaust-operated Gabriel horn, a vast six-pipe affair, was fitted to an early Winton car. A 1908 14.8 h.p. o.h.v. Waverley tourer in immaculate condition has turned up in Brisbane. It was originally purchased for £350 by a lady of Esk, Queensland, who was taught to drive in the streets of Brisbane. The car got bogged six miles from her home, had to be dragged out by horses, and the derision of the local cowboys caused the Waverley to be locked away in a shed, where, after the lady’s death, it has been discovered. It started “first swing” and now runs silently about Brisbane, its mileage only 600 or so. F. S. Thomas confirms that his 1925 Diatto is o.h.c., not push-rod as stated in Mr. Lampitt’s letter; another correction concerns K. Wharton’s Shelsley-Walsh record, which should have been given as 37.27 sec.

I. Scott Maxwell, 4, Blenheim Gardens, Wembley, asks anyone interested in small French vintage sports cars to write to him.

K. W. Lord tells us that the proprietor of the firm he is with in Calgary stocks every spare for the model-A Ford except pistons; some time ago Lord persuaded him to stage a “Model-A week,” which proved a great success and produced more customers with these cars than seemed possible! Seven other enthusiasts, owning between them three M.G.s, two Rover 75s, an XK120 and a Ford Anglia, hope to form a club in Calgary.

In New Zealand a Masterton resident has found an 1895 two-cylinder Panhard, with hot-tube ignition, derelict under a clump of pine trees. He is carefully restoring it.

750 M.C.

We take a fatherly interest in the 750 M.C., which started as a result of our idea, expressed in Motor Sport before the war, that a club for small cars, particularly Austin Sevens, should be formed to allow trials for them to be held free from the then current and menacing V8s. Today the 750 M.C. has a big following and promotes both 750 and 1,172 Formula racing. Its monthly Bulletin contains some extremely practical articles, such as a serial by Jack French on how to build, step by step, a 750 Formula car for about £150, a very useful discourse on the Ford Ten engine by the same author and an article on building a Buckler Special. These articles alone should repay the subscription.

[Incidentally, Alan Hess collected addresses of Austin Seven owners in a big way some time ago; when is he starting his club?—Ed.]

A Tramps Ball is scheduled for December 10th at the Abbey Hotel, N.W.10, where a Castrol representative will address the Club on December 1st. A closed Mudlark follows on the 14th, with the Wrotham Cup Trial on the 21st. Sec.: K. Welfare, 56 Harrow Road, Bedfont, Middlesex.

N. London E.C.C.

On October 30th, at “The Century,” Wembley, members of this and other clubs listened to A. F. Rivers Fletcher cross-questioning John Eason Gibson and Stirling Moss on topics concerning motor-racing.

A series of questions had been set previously, and covered such items as methods of racing driving, pit discipline, team management, training, and so on.

It was agreed between the two that a circuit having corners outlined by a wall, and/or kerb, would generally be a faster one, other things being equal, than where straw bales lined the corners, owing to the tendency of vehicles to mount the latter, but bounce off, or be deflected from the former. Eason Gibson expressed the opinion that budding aces can best be discovered whilst conversing with them, thus finding out their opinions how such and such a circuit should be tackled, rather than watching them in action. Moss thought that, given drivers of equal status, there is no need for any rule of the road when, for example, two cars, approximately level, are approaching a corner; short of endangering the other man’s life, each should go all out to reach the corner first. The same principle was, he felt, applicable to motor-racing as a whole. His advice to those on the starting line waiting for the “off” signal was: they should think of nothing else but motor-racing.

Eason Gibson delighted the audience with a masterful explanation of drift, and how cornering methods have changed.

Moss anticipated 250 b.h.p. and a weight of 10 cwt. from the 1953 formula designs, with which Eason Gibson concurred.

Per Ardua M.C.

The first meeting of the newly recognised club, open to personnel in the Royal Air Force and Royal Auxiliary Reserve, was held at Duxford airfield, near Royston, on Sunday, November 2nd, 1952. Despite conditions that could hardly have been worse, 23 cars of both modern and vintage types took part in the nine driving tests that comprised the club’s first meeting.

Regardless of the steady downpour the tests were keenly contested by the competitors, many of whom were novices, and the final results showed Gordon Johnson in a Dellow to be the winner, with Bateson in a Lancia and Hart in a Minx second and third. The fourth place was secured by Ledal in a 1923 bullnosed Morris, a surprisingly good effort.

At the first general meeting, which followed immediately on the tests, the President, Air Vice-Marshal Sir Francis Mellersh, suggested that if such enthusiasm could be found in conditions that literally “launched” the club it was reasonable to predict that a large and well-informed organisation would spring from this initial beginning. Secretary: Squadron-Leader H. J. McRae, Room 3360, Air Ministry, Whitehallk Gardens, London, S.W.1.