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Author Topic: A Life Filled with Winged Cars... and a few Fords too  (Read 14043 times)
moparstuart
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« Reply #75 on: July 14, 2010, 02:41:13 PM »

Hey Stuart,

I don't think I'm going to let rich live long enough to tell ALL his stories.  He's like a shadow that won't go away - like he's sitting here watching me type. 

the secretary
  you deserve a metal sherry  smilielol 2thumbs 
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WINGR
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« Reply #76 on: July 15, 2010, 07:36:34 AM »

Hey Stuart,

I don't think I'm going to let rich live long enough to tell ALL his stories.  He's like a shadow that won't go away - like he's sitting here watching me type. 

the secretary
  you deserve a metal sherry  smilielol 2thumbs 

Of course she meant that in a good way Rick. smilielol

WINGR/Steve
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Aero426
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« Reply #77 on: February 07, 2011, 12:08:42 PM »

Although it has been a while, I will get back to the story.    In the summer of 1975, my dad formed Superbirds of America (now DSAC).   In the process, he discovered Winged Warriors Limited in California, which was a spinoff of a local Road Runner club.  Jim Radke and Joe Machado were the principals.    Tony Waters in Tennesee also had a club in its early days.  Les Bowman in Ohio had the Plymouth Superbird Club which had been around informally since 1972. 

I don't remember which group Ken Langford was part of, but I think it was Tennesee club.     He announced the desire to hold a wing car gathering at the 1975 Talladega 500.     All the clubs were "all in" for this, and it sounded like a fantastic idea.   It was coming up very quickly as well.    At age 13, I had never been to a real NASCAR race and it was very exciting.

My dad and I met up with another fellow and his girlfriend from Fond du Lac Wisconsin at a truck stop outside of Milwaukee early on Friday morning.    Our green Superbird had never been on a long trip, and only had 9500 miles on it at the time.   It needed a master cylinder (from sitting around) before the trip, and I think he was concerned about a tire too.    Anyway we hit the road, through downtown Chicago, Indiana and contuinuing south.    I distinctly remember the sunset that night in Tennesee with Gerry Rafferty's Baker Street on the AM radio.    I also remember the car turning 10,000 miles.   



We made the trip to the hotel in Huntsville Alabama very late that night.   It was very exciting to see other Superbirds outside at the hotel.  There were quite a few of them.      In the morning, we saw were more cars arriving and it was clear it would be a very successful turnout of cars.       Jim Radke and Joe Machado had driven from California in Joe's silver Daytona, a really spectacular car.     Gilbert Tarr drove the Keith Black Orange County Hemi Daytona from California.   Incredible!    Les and Barabara Bowman had the white and blue custom Superbird most of you know of.    Mike McGuire had an orange Superbird.     Tony Waters had the blue Superbird with the black nose and the spectagraph prism Superbird letters on the quarter panels. 

   

In early afternoon, we took the cars for a cruise over to the Werner Von Braun Civic Center.    There is a lot of rocket history in Huntsville, and Chrysler was no exception as they had a facility there.

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Aero426
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« Reply #78 on: February 07, 2011, 09:48:36 PM »

Back at the hotel, we made the photo some of you are familiar with.    It did not take much cajoling to get the owners up on the wings.   You just took your shoes off and hopped up.   The newspaper took a black and white photo which they printed.   I am sure this was the largest gathering of Daytonas and Superbirds since the cars were new.  



Late in the afternoon the skies were getting darker, and it eventually rained.   We had a nice gathering inside at the motel.  


Sunday morning, VERY early, we were on the road from Huntsville to Talladega.    It seemed like it took forever to get to the race track, at least a couple of hours drive.   And when we got to the track, the skies were very dark.    


Here we are lined up just before the parade lap.   Joe Machado's silver Daytona and Ken Langford's blue Superbird are up front.   Tony Waters' blue Bird and our green car are in the second row.  If you've been on the parade lap before this is the old air base runway we are on, and we still use today.  Just a few less peple are cars back there then.


Nothing prepares you for the size of the banking at Talladega.   It doesn't look like much here, but it is awe inspiring.  There are not too mkany cars showing in this photo, but I think there were apx 22 cars there.   Pretty decent for a first effort by all the clubs.

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Hissing Cobra
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« Reply #79 on: February 08, 2011, 09:36:52 PM »

Wow! I'm impressed with this entire thread. I've been an avid car buff since I was a kid (I'm 42 now) and I love them all, the Fords, Chevy's and of course, the mighty MoPars. My first car was a '69 Dodge Charger and I favor the MoPars over the other brands, although I own a few fox bodied Mustangs now. I remember the MoPars well as a kid and reading your accounts of what happened back then brings back lots of cool memories. While I have never ridden in a winged car, I did get a ride in a '71 Challenger with a 383/4-speed when I was 9 years old (1977). I'll never forget that ride! Thanks for posting this thread! If you have more, keep it coming!
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Aero426
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« Reply #80 on: February 09, 2011, 09:26:16 PM »

Well, we made it through the parade lap, and then it RAINED!   It really rained hard.   We thought there was no way to race would be run.    They hadn't called it, but after a couple hours we decided to leave and head back to the hotel.    We got 10 miles from the track and the sun came out.   So back to the track we went - and it rained some more.    We headed back to the hotel.  Finally the race was called.  Trouble was they were going to run it the following weekend, not the next clear day.    So it was kind of a disappointing end to the first meet.   I still hadn't seen a real Grand National race.    

We headed at some time during the next day and stopped at the Indy 500 museum.    I have misplaced those pics over the last couple months, but as soon as I find them, I will post them.  

The race itself was run the following weekend.   It was one of those races that gave Talladega the spooky reputation that it had.   They started 50 cars in the race.   Early on, Tiny Lund was fatally injured when his '74 Charger was hit in the drivers side.  Lund was a driver who was very well liked.   The same day, Mark Donohue was fatally injured in Austria and passed away.   It was unreal because he had set the worlds closed course lap record at Talladega (221 mph) in the Can-Am Porsche 917-30.   This took place the day before the rainout the week before.  It did not seem possible that Mark was gone.


* t1_lund_ap-01.jpg (13.72 KB, 210x150 - viewed 4022 times.)
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Aero426
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« Reply #81 on: February 09, 2011, 09:36:14 PM »

We finished up 1975 with a small local gathering in Milwaukee.   It must be towards the end of October as the leaves are all off the trees and we were all wearing jackets.    The green car is ours.        The Tor-Red Bird in the middle is Al Hutchison's car which he still owns.   It was a 440 4-speed  car he bought without an engine.   He ran a 318 in the car for a few years.  When we would drive long distance, Al would laugh at us with the great fuel mileage he got.   Eventually it got a 440 back.     The Vitamin-C car is also a 440 car owned by Paul Phillips.    My dad would eventually buy this car from Paul, but it would be several years later.   In the first photo, I am the kid standing at the right of the photo in front of the nose of the green Superbird.    My dad is to the left of me.







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Aero426
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« Reply #82 on: May 12, 2011, 08:56:22 PM »

Before we went back to Talladega in 1976 for a bigger and better event, we held some local events in Milwaukee.  As the club grew to close to 100 members, there was a lot of interest.  


This was a little deal we had at my dads place of business.  I thought it was 1976, but looking at the back of the pics, it actually was 5/22/77.   I'll gert back to 1976 a little furthur down.   Donna Schill sold the silver Daytona and bought the V2 car on left out of Florida.   This is the car that eventually got painted black cherry and wound up at Happy Days cars a few years ago.     My dads faithful green Bird is in the middle, and Bill Elliott recently bought the Tor-Red car with the chrome bumper on the front.   Bill would quickly take that bumper off and eventually repainted the car.  It was a very early Bird, something like J98006.  


Al Dearing's Lemon Twist car was a 6 pack, stick.  The paint on the nose was typical of the times.   Either you wanted something a little different or didn't want to pay the price for the factory decals.   Stuff was expensive even back then.



Richard Tiffany's F8 green Daytona with the chrome wheels.   One of the few times this car was seen in public.  This car is still very low miles and is now being restored by his son Mark.  The yellow Bird still belongs to Steve Powers.  His cars were in the most recent DSAC newsletter.   Steve bought it new.

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taxspeaker
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« Reply #83 on: June 20, 2018, 02:32:36 PM »

Still one of the best "reads" ever. How about an update Doug?
Thanks
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Bob J
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1970 Superbird-"The Alaska Highway SuperBird" "Alpine White
1970 Superbird-"The 43 year barn find LimeLight" Bird
1970 Superbird-"The Birmingham Int'l Raceway Pace Car" Bird
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Birdflu
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« Reply #84 on: June 20, 2018, 03:00:02 PM »

WOW! Really cool! Thanks for digging this up Taxspeaker!  2thumbs
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Aero426
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« Reply #85 on: June 21, 2018, 12:14:20 PM »

Still one of the best "reads" ever. How about an update Doug?
Thanks

Thanks Bob, easy to do.      

This is a cool shot of Richard in 1976 at the 2nd Talladega meet held.    It was taken at a dinner where he was presented with the plaque.    I forget who made these.     But the car design was silk screened on the mirror.   Someone painted the #43.   I used to have one of a Daytona, but it cracked a few years ago and is now gone.   At the time, there were really no collectibles available other than these or the Avon decanters.     Probably a few old timers still have the mirrors.  


* Petty Mirror.jpg (70.11 KB, 800x572 - viewed 281 times.)
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Stevearino
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« Reply #86 on: June 24, 2018, 02:24:33 PM »

Just read this thread Doug. Great stuff. I did not realise your dad lived in Trenton N J my home town. Of course I was one year old when he moved. Also in the 70s and early 80s I worked for a couple of commercial exhibit houses and  Hill was one of the clients who came through with work from time to time. Small world and all of that. Also I got to know your dad after he contacted me about my Wing poster. Great guy but I was unaware how close my first contact with him was to his passing. The print was published in 93. Glad I was able to have his acquaintance.
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talkiemopar
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« Reply #87 on: June 25, 2018, 09:31:43 PM »

If I remember right it was Dave Patiiks sister that made the cars on the mirror. I have two of them. One bird and one daytona. 2thumbs nana
as always the secretary   and Rick E
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moparstuart
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« Reply #88 on: June 26, 2018, 09:11:03 AM »

If I remember right it was Dave Patiiks sister that made the cars on the mirror. I have two of them. One bird and one daytona. 2thumbs nana
as always the secretary   and Rick E
Hi Sherry
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