jeff_a

Elcar

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jeff_a    52

I've been interested in Elcar automobiles for 40 years. My family had one for over 60 years. There may not be enough enthusiasts to have an Elcar Forum...but since many have CCCA Classic status[Models 8-80, 8-81, 8-90, 8-91, 8-92, 120, 130, and 140]...I'll put in a word for the company. The company began as a coachbuilder, literally, with 44 years of buggies, carriages and harness starting in 1873(Elkhart, IN); then built about a thousand Pratt and Pratt-Elkhart automobiles from 1909-1915; and about 18,000 Elcar automobiles from 1916-1931. In-line-eight models introduced in 1924.

 

 oo1928_elcar_8.jpg Elcar photo from coachbuilt.com

 

Elcar Model 8-78 and 8-82 standard sedan: 1928 

1928 Elcar illustration from Philadelphia Free library.

 

Edited by jeff_a (see edit history)

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jeff_a    52

Here's one for sale on ebay until 12/10/16. It's a Mod. 8-78.

 

 1928 Elcar Sedan 8 cylinder

123" w.b., $1,395 new at Elkhart, IN factory, odometer shows 18,761 mi.

Car in barn last 45 years - located S. of Fort Wayne, IN

62 HP Lycoming mod. GT straight-8

Engine Ser.#: 15789

Car Ser.#: A7K88

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jeff_a    52
18 minutes ago, John_Mereness said:

Saw a fellow listed an Elcar on ebay today - under Misc cars

Thanks, John. You're quick. I was typing this in when you posted. I'd buy it sight unseen if it weren't for Ferengi Rules of Acquisition violations 1, 2, & 3: I don't have enough credits, can't pay the transporter, don't have a storage bay for it. 

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alsancle    437

Jeff,  I was just thinking about Elcar the other day and its connection to Mercer in 1931.   When did production actually wind down?  I have noticed that the period magazines seem to show cars in production 1-2 years after conventional wisdom said they were shut down.

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jeff_a    52

Image result for 1930 Elcar biler .dk

 

1930 Elcar in Jysk Automuseum, Gjern, Denmark. Photo from Flickr by perryolf taken 9/1/2007. 1930 Elcars may not register to too many viewers....but remember, one of their models was the fourth most powerful American motorcar that year.   

Edited by jeff_a (see edit history)

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West Peterson    100
On 12/5/2016 at 1:41 PM, alsancle said:

Jeff,  I was just thinking about Elcar the other day and its connection to Mercer in 1931.   When did production actually wind down?  I have noticed that the period magazines seem to show cars in production 1-2 years after conventional wisdom said they were shut down.

The connection:

1931 Mercer.jpg

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alsancle    437
56 minutes ago, jeff_a said:

Image result for 1930 Elcar biler .dk

 

1930 Elcar in Gjern Automuseum. Photo from Flickr by perryolf taken 9/1/2007. 1930 Elcars may not register to too many viewers....but remember, one of their models was the fourth most powerful American motorcar that year.   

 

1. Duesenberg 270 hp.

2. Caddy V16 170 hp.

3. Pierce Arrow 125 hp?

4.  Elcar ?

 

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jeff_a    52

My source is Karl Zahm, Special Interest Autos, Jan/Feb, 1977, pg 58, in his piece "Continental Motors: America's Auto Engine Specialist, Part II". He said: "The fourth most powerful American car in 1930 was the Elcar 140, equipped with a 140-hp, Model 12K Red Seal eight-cylinder engine." 

Edited by jeff_a (see edit history)

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jeff_a    52

   Mr. Zahm doesn't lay out what the others were. The Standard Catalog of American Cars 1805-1942 listing for Elcar says the hp increased "...culminating in a top-of-the-line 140 hp eight that was among the most puissant engines in America of the period, outpowered only by the Duesenberg and Cadillac V-16." The pennant for most horsepower shifted a lot back then. In 1929, Peerless had the Continental 12K in their Model 8-125, out-horsepowering all eight of the General Motors nameplates and the Model L Lincoln, but not Cord, Stearns-Knight, Stutz, or Duesenberg. In 1930, Auburn, Cadillac, Franklin, and Packard didn't have V-12s, and the Marmon V-16 was still on the way.

 

   West, thanks for the picture of the 1931 Mercer. I read that Wm. S. Locke owned it at one time.

Edited by jeff_a (see edit history)

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Grimy    293
44 minutes ago, edinmass said:

The 385 CID Pierce in 1930 was 135 hp.

Picking a nit, the 1930 Pierce Model A, 385 cid, was advertised at 132 hp.  (It's a very rare delight to be able to catch Ed on some nitnoy detail!)  :-)

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edinmass    274

George, if I tuned it I bet I would have gotten another five to ten out of it!

 

Ill probably get hammered for this, buy I bet the Contentinal didn't make more than 115. Manufactures claims and assembled cars often blurred the lines on horse power. What wad the CID of the Elcar? To make 140 it needed to be BIG.

Edited by edinmass (see edit history)

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Grimy    293
jeff_a    52

Both the Elcar 130 (1930 and 1931) and 140 (1930) were advertised at 140 hp. The 12K in the Peerless 8-125 for 1929 was listed at 114 hp. Ivan Saxton has written previously about the 322 Cu. In. Continental (which would include the 12K, 13K, and 14K) using Ricardo combustion chambers to get more power. Maybe that plays a part.

 

The big sedan in Post #9 is a Model 140.

 

With 23 posts in two days, maybe the Elcar guys ought to start a forum. I don't think any of us in this discussion actually have one. AACA Forums Member "v.milke" from Mexico does. There must be more than one.

 

 

 

Edited by jeff_a (see edit history)

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edinmass    274

At 322 I think 140 is a big over reach, wasn't the over head Stutz about 322 CID and wasn't claiming 140. I have worked on a K 12 and I am quite sure it isn't 140. The Peerless guys quote 115 hp for the K 12 and the two I have driven feel more like 80.  I guess the best way to describe any car from the era is adiquate or under powered, as to the very few that has excess or above average performance. In a thirties car it takes between 150 and 200 hp to notice any difference. Ed

Edited by edinmass (see edit history)

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K8096    39

The 322 CI SOHC Stutz of 1929-1933 was advertised at 113 hp.   I think it was a little more that that though.    What octane was the gasoline in 1930?  70?  Putting 89 octane gas in one would increase the hp today wouldn't it?   I know guys who rebuild Stutz engines now who up the compression ratio to 7:1 and get a lot more hp out of them, and that's with stock carburation.  That probably includes boring it .0030 over too.            

Edited by K8096 (see edit history)

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