Tag: 1956

Tour the mountains by rail in the 1956 Pontiac Fairmont Hy-Rail #18 replica – Thomas A. DeMauro @Hemmings

Tour the mountains by rail in the 1956 Pontiac Fairmont Hy-Rail #18 replica – Thomas A. DeMauro @Hemmings

Advertisements

Though we aspire to make lasting memories with our own vintage cars, we don’t always require them to embark on awe-inspiring journeys. One such opportunity is offered by the Nevada Northern Railway Museum in the town of Ely. It has recreated the Fairmont A34 Hy-Rail Inspection Motor Car Pontiac station wagon that the railway had ordered new in 1956, and you can ride the rails in it when visiting the museum on certain days, or even drive it for an additional cost.

This is the original A34 Hy-Rail #18.

The Hy-Rail’s purpose was to ease track inspection by providing a means for which the same car or truck could operate on the road or the rails, by attaching an apparatus to the front and rear of the frame to facilitate the latter. The vehicle would access the track (or leave it) at railroad crossings. With the tires positioned on the rails, the flanged guide wheels of the Hy-Rail were lowered, locked in place, and the steering was locked, to make the car track ready.

Fairmont Machine Company, which was established in the early 1900s in Fairmont, Minnesota, became Fairmont Railway Motors Inc. in the 1920s, and it developed the Hy-Rail in the 1940s. During the 20th century, the enterprise became a leading producer of railway service and maintenance equipment, which was sold worldwide. Fairmont was acquired by the Harsco Corporation in 1979, and Hy-Rail system production continued. Among the various vehicles that were converted over many decades by Fairmont were 1956-1958 Pontiac station wagons


With this Pontiac’s front bumper removed, the Hy-Rail assembly can be viewed easily.

According to the company’s brochure, the Hy-Rail employed a hydraulic pump driven by an electric motor, and at the front and rear of the car was a pushbutton to actuate them, a lever to control a hydraulic valve, and a hydraulic cylinder to raise and lower the guide-wheel and arm assemblies. Mechanical locks (with a safety pin) secured each Hy-Rail unit in the wheels-up or wheels-down position and were engaged by a centrally located lever in front and a lever at either side in the rear. A manual steering lock was also employed and featured a light on the dashboard that indicated when it was in use.

The guide-wheels carried a portion of the vehicle’s load when on the track, and Fairmont explained that it was applied through adjustable rubber-cushion torque units, which aided in maintaining a smooth ride. However, the tires, which also rode on the rails, still supported most of the car’s weight and provided the traction for driving and braking

In the rear, the ball-top lever controls the hydraulic valve and the other lever is for the manual lock on the Hy-Rail.

Read on

This 1956 Ford Fairlane Victoria Coupe Still Features the Original Invoice – Mircea Panait @AutoEvolution

Advertisements

Not to be confused with the Fairlane line of vehicles for the Australian market, the full-size car for North America replaced the Crestline series in 1955. The Victoria hardtop coupe in the gallery is one of the best-preserved examples from the first generation of the Fairlane, and believe it or not, this blast from the past still features the original invoice.

RK Motors Charlotte, the selling vendor, describes chassis number M6DV222852 as “fully documented” because the dealer invoice is complemented by the original service policy, owner’s manual, a stack of service records, detailed ownership history, and the Continental kit.

Following a comprehensive restoration of the exterior and interior, the 1956 model currently wears Peacock Blue and Colonial White paintwork over Peacock Blue and Colonial White vinyl for the dashboard, seats, door cards, and even the steering wheel rim. 15-inch wire wheels are joined by whitewall tires and the factory fender skirts, and the engine bay is cleaner than you’d expect – although the exhaust manifold exhibits some corrosion.

Read on

Video: Creating the 1956 Chevrolet – @MacsMotorCityGarage

Advertisements

Chevrolet was proud of its 1956 lineup, and rightly so. See the confidence on display in this 1956 color film.

This beautifully produced clip is actually an excerpt  from a much longer 1956 General Motors film entitled American Engineer, and as such, it provides a 10,000-ft. look at the engineering and design work that created the ’56 Chevrolet line. There’s very little n the way of granular technical detail here. This is more of a cinematic think piece on the corporation’s philosophy of engineering—as seen, perhaps, through the eyes of the automaker’s public relations department.

The production is busting its buttons with mid-century American pride and confidence, and rightly so, we think. At the time, General Motors was far and away the world’s largest automaker, as well as one of the greatest industrial enterprises in history.  And the Chevrolet division was its flagship, with sales that often exceeded the rest of the GM brands combined. While ’56 was not a record year for the bow-tie

Read on

Missing for 50 Years: 1956 Bangert Manta Ray

Advertisements

Noel Bangert launched his first car to the public in 1954. Called the ‘Stag’, it was modeled after Indianapolis race cars and was raced on the West Coast by famous drivers such as Bill Pollack at Willow Springs and other tracks.

Spurred on by success, Noel brought out his second car in 1955 called the Manta Ray aimed at both the sports and race car market. His second car met with great acclaim with production reaching 20 to 30 cars and bodies. Magazines featured his sports cars and racing versions appeared on the West Coast. It even appeared at the 1955 Petersen (Hot Rod, Motor Trend Magazines) Motorama.

This Manta Ray was purchased as a body by Elwood Cauffman of Whittier, CA, who built a custom tubular frame and installed a rebuilt high performance V8 engine. This is one of four known Bangert Manta Ray sports cars that exist today (Source conceptcarz.com)

This exact car is now for sale here on eBay, where bidding is over $33K and the reserve remains unmet.
Read more here at Barn Finds

Chrysler Lost Heritage: The Norseman – The Chrysler Blog

Advertisements

Chrysler Lost Heritage: The Norseman

Back in the 1950’s one if my favourite car designers Virgil Exner was experimenting with a whole new look for Chrysler. An important factor in these developments was a partnership with the Ghia design studio in Italy. One of the highlights of this collaboration was “The Norseman” concept car.

Read the story  here & here

Chrysler Lost Heritage: The Norseman