Media Coverage on Specialty Cars

Media Coverage

In this month's issue of Rod & Custom roadsters were being promoted. Below you can view a couple in progress. A theme of "glass-bodied T's on "a '40s track roadster with modern mechanics." An OHC 2300cc Ford four-cylinder engine with a 5 speed trans and a narrowed 9=inch rear on coil-covers powers these fabricated tube axle cars that ride on a cross spring that carries a Dodge Omni rack-and-pinion and Wildwood disc brakes. A full tubular structure inside the body is another unique feature of these machines, which not only protects the driver and passengers, but also provides a stiffer frame and mounting points for the steering column, seat belts and more. - based on an article by Pat Ganahl.

Photos taken and sent to Rod & Custom by a reader named Richard Hill, who happens to make a living as a photographer in Woodbridge, Ontario of his current project on a surface table being assembled at Linken Manufacturing in Oakville, Ontario, by Ken Stewart and Al Harringa, Jr.

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A '27 T body in a shop in Troy, Michigan commissioned by Steve Gilkey of Knoxville, Tennessee which came from California is featured here. The nose, hood, and pans were shaped much like those on Dick Flint's famous red Model A. Though this car has 248-inch Dodge Red Ram "baby Hemi" in place of the flathead that sits in Flint's Model A. It also has a '39 top-shift trans, a Halibred quickie and a set of red Kelsey spoke wheels.

Driving or riding in a fenderless roadster has no comparison. You get to look down a hood full of louvers and watch the front wheels spin. The ride is wonderful and the noise and chop are very tolerable if not a splendid enjoyment.

More Facts and Figures

This old Jack Thompson '27 track roadster was a dream come true once the finances were established and Rick Creese finished this splendid custom auto. With a 2x3 rectangle shaped tube frame and a small-block Chevy and new front and rear suspension this classic became a pleasure cruise.

The deck lid is complimented overhead by a encircling-rear pushbar, as well as the side-mounted '39 Ford teardrop taillights and Tommy the greek design on the turtle deck with a personalized license plate.

The traditional and decorative nerf bar with initial placed center formed by Creese from mild steel sets this '27 track roadster off just right.

Itchy Otis had the pleasure of striping the 8-inch headlight buckets in the traditional
"Tommy the Greek" style.

The sprint/lakes-type headers, formed by Tri-C were blued out and due to heating issues an extra amount of louvers were created and weren't the easiest to paint and stripe. The front suspension includes a Super bell front axle with 4-inch drop '37 spindles, JFZ brakes, a single leaf spring and four-bar split wishbones make this classic come to life.

With no doors, no roof, no air, no sounds and no six-way seats you can see why the nerf-mounted step plates were a crucial addition.

A once upon a time stand in for Evel Knievel, Gary Davis has worked his way all the up to stunt coordinator and second unit sound director for many films such as: Teminator 2, Patriot Games and F/X as well as many more.

So no wonder this guy can have Tri-C help him create such an awesome machine.

If Davis isn't spinning around the block in his track roadster he is hard at work riding his collection of vintage flat track and TT motorcycles including a triumph twins, BSA Gold Stars and Matchless one-lungers.

Since the track roadsters were dual-purpose cars their owners would make turning passes at the El Mirage during the off season. To the left was a dark blue '27 T owned by Jack Thompson and was on the cover of the Aug. '58 issue of Hot Rod with his huge 7/16 T 7/16-inch flathead that was being restored to it's original condition was more than powerful enough.

This famed Dick Kraft '23 T was on the January '73 cover and featured was featured as an old-track star built in the early '50s and became the Highland Planting Spl.

Pete Chapouris sits in his British racing green ' 27 T with his son Pete Jr. with Windshield posts carved by Lil' John Buttera.

Track roadsters have had a great spectator appeal and have generated allot of energy. Just look at this photo of Jim Rathman (16) leading Jack McGrath (1) which became Indy drivers.

We here at Tri-C Engineering would like to thank
Rod&Custom magazine for this product profile.