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Magic Muffler Fiat - Awful Awful/Fuel Altered

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This is a model of the restored Jim Miles Magic Muffler Fiat AA/Fuel Altered dragster.

The original car had a fiberglassed 1948 Fiat Topolino body with a bored and stroked 331 Chrysler Hemi. Jim Miles built the car and acquired sponsorship from the Magic Muffler Shops in Southern California. In August 1965 at the Lions Drag Strip, as driver Gary Essman hit the throttle the bottom end of the engine exploded all over the track. A photographer captured the exact moment this happened.

MagicMufflerFiat_100-vi.jpg

It seems that in the rush to get the car built, they forgot to torque the bottom end.

Although it has Jim Miles noted as the driver on the car, he wasn't driving it at Lions Drag Strip that night. Jim had planned on driving the car, but after a bad accident in 1964 he he decided to stop driving.

The restored car was done by Billy Corbett and Jim Miles.

My inspiration to build a model of this car came about when I picked up a copy of the Winter 2015 "Elapsed Times" magazine.

MagicMufflerFiat_101-vi.jpg

​I scratch built the frame, modified the Fiat body in the AMT "Dual Dragster" kit, made my own wire wheels, decals and added numerous after market parts and pieces.

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​thanx for looking'...

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I'm glad to see someone do this car when I bought the magazine I though that would be awsome done in 1/25 and you didn't let me down beautiful job. I was hoping someone would make decals to do this car I hope your looking at this Darryl I know I'd be in for a set of them and I know your the guy to do them.

Vince

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Super cool! I need to get me some decals for this car!

I was told that the pics of the car from two different angles was due to a bet placed by two photogs as to who could take the better picture. The Magic car came up and they both took pics of it blowing up! One caught the engine with flames and the other with the crank on the ground being run over!

Either way, they immortalized this car forever!

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That's freekin cool man!!!!!!!! Awesome build!!!! :-)

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That's a great lookin model. Great skill on display here. However, if I was a drag racer, this car don't look safe and stable enough to tear down the track in. I guess it takes a little crazy. Then again all drag cars are guided missiles anyway.

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Great job. Super clean. When I saw the article I thought that there was plenty to work from. Which did you use for the chassis?

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Great job. Super clean. When I saw the article I thought that there was plenty to work from. Which did you use for the chassis?

Using the photographs in the article, from the internet and Street Rodder Journal I scratch built the chassis using plastruct rod.

here's a couple photos of the chassis...

DSCN0655-vi.jpg

DSCN0726-vi.jpg

It was fun...

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Very nice.

A couple of questions, I noticed what looks like burn marks on the tubing. Did you heat and smash the frame together? Also, are the decals going to be available?

Mike

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Very nice.

A couple of questions, I noticed what looks like burn marks on the tubing. Did you heat and smash the frame together? Also, are the decals going to be available?

Mike

Those "burn marks" is nothing but dirty Weldon #3 liquid glue. As you get near the bottom of the bottle the glue tends to get a little "muddy".

I just do decals for myself, but I've got a friend with an Alps Printer who will print them for a small fee. I just need to get him the artwork.

c'ya

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Phenomenal job Curt, really captures the look of a real car. I've never seen Blue Streaks look more at home.

Edited by Speedfreak

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Wow, your car looks more realistic than the one on the cover of the magazine!

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Awesome, faithful, and well executed build!! And yes - one of the greatest drag race action photos of all time!

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