View Full Version : "Specials"

07-25-2004, 02:07 AM
Since the topic of DKW's came up (my fault /ubbthreads/images/graemlins/blush.gif), I thought of an unusual car picture I came across a few years ago.

There is an image attached here of a "1957 DKW" for sale in Ontario during 1990, that doesn't resemble any other DKW I've ever seen any pictures of, and the ad says virtually nothing about it. Tried calling the number and found the phone number was not being used anymore...

I've always wondered what this car is, it looks too good to have been scrapped, wonder if it's still around somewhere...


These Specials interest me. I've seen several of them at different times, it amazes me at the ingenuity people have to design and build a car of their own, a fair number of these specials seem to have been built back in the 1950's through 1960's but it seems to be a lost art now...

07-25-2004, 10:53 AM
Back in those days, it was easier to built a "Special" and stand a reasonably good chance of winning.

Weld together a tube frame, hop up a stock engine, and cover it with some sort of homemade aluminum body....and go racin'.

On the Left Coast there was Max Balchowski and his "Old Yallers" and Ken Miles' MG Specials...and in the East, the Fitch-Whimore Jag, Walt Hansgen's Jag Special, and Candy Poole's PBX. None of 'em real pretty, but they all were winners!

07-25-2004, 06:07 PM
Cruise on over to Vintage Motorsport's website and pick up a copy of their book "Road Racing Specials". Thoroughly enjoyable and a good reference. I'll have a look at mine tonight and see if there are any references to a Deek special.


07-25-2004, 10:24 PM
Some more pictures of Specials I've seen...

#1 LeMay roadster, built by Richard LeMay of Calgary from 1976 to 1981, Jaguar V12 engine, have never actually talked to Richard (who is still the owner), just reading what a plaque on the car says...


#2 Hubley Bluenose, built in Nova Scotia in 1937 by Reg Hubley from mainly American car parts, raced briefly and then retired, purchased by David Boon (Ontario automotive writer) in recent years and restored, christened with its name by him


#3 Alfa Romeo based car, no name given to it that I know of, built by an Ontarian recently, first on the road in spring 2003, as I recall... Alfa 1750 engine, body and chassis designed and built by him, mechanical layout inspired by Porsche 550, he was very shy about divulging any details during the few times I talked to him


#4 Witten-Chevrolet, built in 1961 in Quebec, as I recall built around Chevrolet V8, one of possibly two or three built, and that's all I remember... Any more of them left?


07-27-2004, 02:08 PM
I'm mildly surprised nobody's mentioned Bill Sadler's creations! PS-I didn't find any references to a DKW special being built in the fifties or sixties. You may want to try asking this over at Atlas F1's The Nostalgia Forum, as well.


07-27-2004, 04:04 PM
Since Sherlock began this thread with DKWs, I'll add a picture of a "special" car closely related. This is a 1959 Scampolo/Auto Union. The car was built in East Germany and was run in fomula-car events supported by the Communist Party in eastern Europe!
This one ran at the Hershey Hillclimb and I got a chance to chat with the owner. At first I thought it was a FV but then I noticed the front suspension and the 3-into-1 exhaust caught my eye (and the "ring-ding-ding" exhaust note). The Auto Union 2-stroke triple is the same as the DKW engine. A pretty-looking and well-made car in my view.


07-27-2004, 05:23 PM
"A pretty-looking and well-made car in my view."

Don't you mean go-kart? /ubbthreads/images/graemlins/wink.gif

07-27-2004, 05:52 PM
Ha-Ha...I guess you have a point there!

But really, don't laugh at karts.....some of the enduro-style shifter-karts we see at Pocono Raceway are much faster than "real" cars....they'd run away from my Sprite!

Anderson 250 Shifter-Kart

07-27-2004, 06:15 PM
Anderson 250 Shifter-Kart

[/ QUOTE ]

A friend has an Anderson 250 Shifter. Clocked at 172 MPH at Daytona.
Do you mean to tell me that is faster than your Sprite, Nial?


07-27-2004, 06:44 PM
... it amazes me at the ingenuity people have to design and build a car of their own, a fair number of these specials seem to have been built back in the 1950's through 1960's but it seems to be a lost art now...

[/ QUOTE ]

I think if you look at a few of the hot rods people are building, you'll see that the ingenuity hasn't vanished, it's just been redirected.

Regarding DKW specials - one of the most sucessful small specials of the late fifties & early to mid sixties was the Zink Petite Mk.II, built by Ed Zink. It had a DKW 3cyl mounted amidships. The picture shows it in the mid sixties at Thompson, with then owner Malcolm Donaldson driving. The car still exists.


07-27-2004, 07:10 PM
Due to the restructuring of the racing rules, about the only venue available for true specials here in the States is in the Sports Racing classes of the SCCA. There are some pretty decent homebuilts out there, but of course not like the glory days of the '50's and '60's.
I personally would love to see the "Mod" classes come back, but it will never happen. All I can do is go to the vintage races and remember the days of yesteryear. /ubbthreads/images/graemlins/cryin.gif


07-27-2004, 08:14 PM
Here's another DKW Special (origins known). I have never seen the actual car, only this picture of the car that someone gave me...

It was built in 1961, the first race car the guy built, it was actually driven to/from the track, he sold it about two years later I believe to move onto other things.

It was found by a young person (far left person in picture below) at a scrapyard near Mosport Raceway a couple of years ago, last I heard he was planning to restore it for road use and was trying to track down a 2-stroke DKW engine for it.


07-27-2004, 09:09 PM
A friend has an Anderson 250 Shifter. Clocked at 172 MPH at Daytona......

My car wouldn't do 172 kilometers per hour!

Great pictures guys.
I've seen plenty of FV Zinks, but never any sports-racer Zinks.
That Canadian special in the junkyard is cool. Wonder what the story is on it?