Tom Stephan, Pete Stephan, Fritz Richmond, Buzz Martin
Here's a photo from the greater Boston area, summer of 1957.
My younger brother Pete (bent down in back) laid out the cash for the rear engine dragster body we got from the Nomads car club, who ran it with a Ford Flathead. We hammered out the dents (mostly) in the aluminum body and dropped in a stock 354ci Chrysler Hemi. We ran a '40 Ford transmission using Second and Third only (to simplify linkage). We finished it just in time for the last drags of the season in Sanford, Maine. We turned 144 mph on our best run. Our crew consisted of (left to right) Fritz Richmond, Buzz Martin, Pete, and me, Tom Stephan, in the hot seat. All of us were from Newton, Massachusetts. All of this was done back in the "hobby era" of hot rodding. Just about everything on the car was scrounged or handmade. The headers, for example, were zoomie-style, made from 2-inch electrical conduit. They sounded absolutely awesome! It was a sound you could feel as much as hear. The only reason we finished in time was that Fritz rode in our rented, open trailer doing last-minute stuff all the way from Newton to Sanford. When we arrived at the pits, the competition in A/Dragster was huge! However, there was only one car in A/Fuel, so we put a pint of Everclear in with the "high test" and took home the trophy.
Lake Park, Minnesota
1930 Ford Model A Coupe
From the stance to the paint, to virtually every detail, Jay's sweet five-window is a textbook picture of an authentic '40s-style hot rod. The A 'rails, wire spoke wheels, split wishbone suspension, dropped I-beam axle, dropped headlights, retained handles and hardware, and no-frills interior nail the look of that era, and a Winfield high-compression 4-banger with a single 97 on a downdraft intake completes the whole package. Jay says the steel body, driveline, and mechanical brakes are all original, and the blackwall piecrust bias-plies are new old stock from the 1950s. The suede finish was achieved with a basecoat without clear. He converted to a 12-volt system and uses Halogen bulbs behind the stock headlight lenses. Wanna know why? Because he drives this coupe everywhere. He says he clocked 1,000 miles in three weeks last summer.
1934 Plymouth Sedan
All of a sudden, we could really go for a glass of milk. Day or night, it's hard to miss this pure white Plymouth. Don told us he has been building street rods for 50 years, and the PE Deluxe two-door sedan is his latest ride. The top has been chopped 3 inches and the five-spokes are Cragar Classics. The interior is covered in gray tweed with purple inserts. A banjo steering wheel complements the whole nostalgic impression. The drivetrain combination consists of a Chevy 350 paired with a Turbo 350 automatic and a Ford 9-inch rearend. The front end uses Mustang II-style components. The car was finished a little more than a year ago, just in time to drive it on a 400-mile round trip from the Dallas area to Oklahoma City for the NSRA Southwest Nationals. Whether at the show or on the road, you bet the sedan was getting attention.