'70s funny car questions

19 posts in this topic

Posted · Report post

Did the Lenco-equipped funny cars use a clutch pedal or lever? If so, does anyone have a photo or 2 to share?

Also, when did roof hatches come into common usage among funny cars?

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Posted · Report post

Did the 70's funnycars use a lenco.?

I think they either used an automatic or a direct drive

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Posted · Report post

Well I believe they used a direct drive that was set up like a powerglide. I know that a Lenco didn't come around til the late 80s at the earliest I'm just not sure on the exact tranny for that time period.

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Posted · Report post

lenco was founded in 1970. the later into the 70's you go the more cars were equipped with them. they had clutch pedals, no levers

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Posted (edited) · Report post

Leonard Abbott was Lenco. He had a top fuel car in the late '60s. In the late '60s & early '70s added a funny car driven by his employee "Smokey" Joe Lee. These race cars were in many ways a test bed for the Lenco transmission's developement. By 1970 he was selling his transmissions for nitro cars.

The "high gear only" cars had a clutch pedal. (Like Jim Dunn's red Cuda & today's funny cars)

The first roof hatch I remember was on the ChiTown Hustler '69/'70 Charger. The required hatches didn't start until the early '80s.

Edited by Hondo

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Posted · Report post

in 1967 nhra rules required a "emergency only" escape hatch built into current funny cars.the 1967 flip top mercury comets had these pop riveted roof hatches that were not on the 1966 mercurys.

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Posted (edited) · Report post

Did the Lenco-equipped funny cars use a clutch pedal or lever? If so, does anyone have a photo or 2 to share?

Also, when did roof hatches come into common usage among funny cars?

From Hot Rod Magazine Sept 1971 page 75, Barry Setzer Funny Car

" Lenco 2 Speed and Crower 3 disc clutch"

3 levers in drivers compartment, one is brake handle, one is to shift to second gear, and other is for the reverser.

Clutch pedal is used for neutral, Lenco does not have a neutral gear

Roof hatches, this from Denny Savage

"Anyone got any pictures of the Hawaiin at Ontario Motor Speedway, in 1974?

I was driving, and had a BAD BAD fire, in the lights.. It made the Centerfold of "Drag News" in the "Simpson" add.. That was about the last Bad fire, before they mandated "Thermos Jacket" headers, and "Roof Hatches", or as Coil called them... "Pig Chutes"...

http://classicfunnycarboard.com/CFB/index.php/topic,834.9075.html

So this puts roof hatches about 75 or 76

Edited by tbusch

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Posted · Report post

When I worked there the earliest reciept which was the very first reciept was in 70 and was to Prudhomme. Leonard was testing them in his car in late 69 early 70 IIRC. Lenco used to be an engine remanufacturing company, When Leonard designed the Lenco Transmission he sold the engine side and concentrated on the transmissions. I actually worked for both companies. (seperate owners) The engine shop existed up until 2001. After 9-11 it closed up, bankrupt.

The trans was initially designed without a neutral but years later they were added to the reverser so that people didn't have to hold the clutch in to move the car. There was an overdrive version of it too. Different case and some internals were changed. Leonard also made his own blowers call "Big Wind'. He may have even been the first one to make a floater rear end. The parts for the orginal Lenco's are still the same with inprovements of course. Just goes to show the durability of the design, for it to stand the test of time for 53 years and counting!

They were all manually shifted at first but he did design a air shift pod using co2, but not sure when. When I did the trans for Prudhommes cackle car it got a shift lever so im guessing sometime in 71 or 72 it was designed.

Paul

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Posted · Report post

So this puts roof hatches about 75 or 76

First roof hatch was on the Chi town Hustler Charger wasn't it? That would put it at 70. I'm sure they started showing up here and there until mandated. Whenever that was.

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Posted · Report post

First roof hatch was on the Chi town Hustler Charger wasn't it? That would put it at 70. I'm sure they started showing up here and there until mandated. Whenever that was.

I was talking about mandated hatches. uctually it was funny car driver Denny Savage that said 75 or 76.

Chi-Town did have one but it was not mandated by any santioning body

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Posted · Report post

http://public.fotki.com/funman1712/tim-boyds-124th--12/boyd-scale-funny-cars-/boyd-funny-cars-models/

This funny car model was built during 1970/71 and finished in early 1972. The bodywork was probably done in 1970. I vaguely recall seeing a 1/1 scale hinged roof hatch that gave me this idea, although perhaps not with this offset alignment which was needed to match the entirely scratchbuilt '70 Gene-Snow style chassis you can see here.

Many pix of this and other funny cars of this era at the link....TIM

DSC_0445-vi.jpg

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Posted (edited) · Report post

In 1971 they were mandatory by the NHRA, but roof hatches starting appearing on some funny cars as early as 1966. For 1978 they were mandated to be aluminum like a washing machine cover....

when they went back to the piece that came out of the roof like they do now is a mystery to me!

Edited by kitswapper

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Posted (edited) · Report post

DSCF0383_zps299b76ac.jpgDSCF0383_zps307a9a05.jpg

Not sure if this will help, but this is from a '79 funny car. The two levers are for the chutes.

Edited by GoatGuy

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Posted · Report post

The link above to the Chi Town Hustler, is it the original car or a new modern 'NewStalgia " car ?

Article is worded to say it's the original car, yet some things look wrong, ( rear wheels as an example )

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Posted · Report post

The link above to the Chi Town Hustler, is it the original car or a new modern 'NewStalgia " car ?

Article is worded to say it's the original car, yet some things look wrong, ( rear wheels as an example )

If you mean this one:

That would be the hatch the Chi Town charger had, this is from an earlier forum posting

http://cs.scaleautom....aspx?sort=DESC

That is the original car, a young Austin Coil and Jungle Jim Liberman as fill in driver. Jungle died in a street car accident in September of 1977

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Posted · Report post

A buddy of mine that sore the ramchargers funny car back in the 1970s said that there was clutch pedels in funny cars

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Posted · Report post

If you mean this one:

That would be the hatch the Chi Town charger had, this is from an earlier forum posting

http://cs.scaleautom....aspx?sort=DESC

That is the original car, a young Austin Coil and Jungle Jim Liberman as fill in driver. Jungle died in a street car accident in September of 1977

i was referencing this link.

http://www.moparmax.com/events/2009/iv_7-mosley-1.html

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