Martyn G

  • Content Count

  • Joined

  • Last visited


Community Reputation

0 Neutral

About Martyn G

  • Rank
    Junior Member
  1. Dear all, Posting an advertisement on behalf of Mr. Wolf Grodd, who is not a member here but I thought this would be topical given the recent ALF threads. I hope this is OK! Wolf is selling his 1924 ALF, rebuilt to resemble one of the Mercedes 90 chain-drive tourers owned by Count Louis Zborowski of Chitty Chitty Bang Bang fame. In his own words: "I acquired an incomplete pumper some 15 years ago in Sydney, Australia. I always wanted a large engine, veteran chain driven tourer. All necessary components came with this purchase. The chassis was shortened by 13 inches, the 25 inch wheels are built around the original hubs, the sprocket was enlarged by 50% to take new chains and raise cruising speed to over 100 kms per hour. A complete new body was constructed with a new bonnet, firewall set back, steering column lowered and beautifully deep buttoned green leather seats front and rear. The whole project is styled on a 1915 Mercedes 90, which had a mere 9 litre motor. This of course retains its original 14.5 litre, which has never been apart and shows no sign of wear. Rebuilt gear box and clutch, shortened shaft between engine and gear box, original differential, the paint finish to the body is a matt black "barn find". After years of exciting motoring it is now time for a change and I invite expressions of interest. This is surely unique and I'm inviting offers of around $80,000 U.S.". I've attached a picture to give an idea of the looks of the car. The car is located in Brisbane, Australia and was a feature car in Restored Cars magazine in 2002. It really is a spectacular and different car, even for a converted ALF! As I say, I'm only posting this on Wolf's behalf and don't have too many further details, but please feel free to ask and I'll do my best to answer. I do have several more pictures and can email them on request; or if you may be interested in purchasing, please feel free to contact Wolf directly at for more technical information and pictures. Best regards, Martyn Griffiths
  2. Hi Ken, Thanks for the useful information. It will be a while before I get to examine one of these machines in person and I'd been wondering how the backfires reach the oil pan. Don't the oil filler necks have a cover of some kind? Is this the only way the problem can occur? How frequent is it? BTW, Tom has created a group on Yahoo for ALF speedster discussions - if you'd care to join, it's at: If you join, it's easy to post whole albums of pictures, hint hint! Cheers, Martyn Griffiths
  3. Al, I could really use a handbrake lever, and a seat if you have one. Maybe more down the line. Could you please email me at if you have these items available? Thanks! Tom, Good work! Joining up now! Cheers, Martyn
  4. Chris, thanks, I know Hal, I'll ask him about it. Al, thanks also. I figured they were probably 38s. I think the rears are 38's too though, or the car should slope noticeably to the front (mine has 40's on the rear at present and does slope). Any idea of the make of these diamond-tread tyres? Tom, that looks like the yellow car currently for sale at, yeah? The builder has really gone for the Mercer look. Not bad, but I like cycle fenders best mesself. Cheers, MG
  5. PPS - this car won at the Ohio concours in 2003. Does anyone have any further information or pics? I would really like to obtain more pics if possible. It looks to have a few features I'd like to plagiarize! Also, does anyone know offhand the make & size of these tyres? Cheers, Martyn
  6. PS - Tom, are you going to fit dampers? A lot of people do, one of the UK speedster guys said online somewhere that it was more to prevent bad behaviour at high speed than actual shock damping. With the springs on a diet, the car will be more prone to axle misbevaviour I guess. Thanks to all for the good stuff re pan vents. That'll come in handy. Cheers, Martyn
  7. Restorer32, I agree, a club or some sort of online community thing would be a great idea. There's already a forum for ALF fire-equipment buffs and the guy who runs that seems to be tolerant, but a lot of the membership might not be. Tom and I found out that the Yahoo ALF fire-equipment list is definitely *not* a friendly place for speedster owners. I think maybe a Yahoo ALF speedster-only list might be a good idea? That should be easy to find and join. It would be good to have a permanent place for discussion - this thread has been great, but it's temporary and not easy to find with a general web search. There are definitely dozens, maybe hundreds of speedsters out there, and many owners must be online. The Yahoo lists allow for a fair-sized archive of photos, so we could show off our machines, put up technical graphics, etc. Maybe a home page to back it up and direct surfers to the list, too? I can set these kinds of things up if you think it would be worthwhile. BTW, I have also laid my hands on a nice 1924 Type 12. So to speak - it hasn't actually shipped yet. Can't wait. Cheers, Martyn G
  8. They're two-wheel-drive, with a heavy bronze transaxle and sprocket on each side. The rear axle is solid, and suspended by semi-elliptics with a shackle at each end (because you have to be able to tension the chains, so there's also a kind of swingarm/adjuster). The brake drums do double duty as drive sprockets. BTW, there are brakes only on the rear wheels, but they have both inside shoes and outside bands, separately actuated (IIRC, the bands are the main foot-operated brake). Some of these trucks were retrofitted with factory aftermarket four-wheel-brake kits. The lurid drifting was done by non-ALF racers mainly, I doubt the fireys would have been too keen on it!! Same sort of engineering on Mercedes Simplexes, though.
  9. Ha ha! Mebbe, haven't worked it out - the usual capacity is 14.5 litres not 16, this one's bored as Restorer32 says. There are also smaller 6-cyl ALF engines eg Type 38 and Type 12, can't recall capacity offhand. One's 11 litres, IIRC.
  10. And here's the other Four I mentioned, up for auction early next month in the U.K. It's not bad really: says they have a 1915 speedster coming soon also. Cheers, MG
  11. PS if anyone would like to see video of an ALF speedster running, there's some here: This machine was for sale in the U.K. on earlier this year, but has now sold. Cheers, Martyn G
  12. Restorer32, I'm killing myself laughing here at the "less seasoned" bit! Hope you weren't burned or otherwise injured though? Didn't know about the explosion hazard and it's a bit of a dampener. Would it be feasible to cast up a stronger case with ribbing, or would that just result in the pan blowing off? How bad is the shrapnel and flame hazard really? I think if I ever find one of these I'll be using the electric-start only...ideally by remote control! I spotted the cast cowl and was going to ask about that, almost couldn't believe what I was seeing. Ditto the radiator; I thought you might have cut down or lowered the original or something. How many leaves did you take out of the front springs? I can't believe the amount of work you've put into this thing. The design is brilliant, great job, you deserve to be proud. BillP...don't say that...I've been looking all year...there's too much competition already, hehe!! Prices are shooting up, actually. A year or two ago two Type 75's were advertised at 6K but you wouldn't get a deal like that any more. Bore on these is usually about 5.5". Dunno the stroke, offhand. Supposedly you can use some Lycoming aero-engine pistons, and there are supposed to be John Deere ones that also fit.
  13. Wow! Restorer32, see what you mean about the design work. That's a ton of stuff you've done there. Love the tube thing. Oil cooler? Chris, motor looks nice. How far have you got now, is it back in the car? How much work did you need to do to the motor? Tom, awesome Hudson.
  14. That's one of the Speedster Motorcars replicas I guess; they used to make kits, but only turnkeys now I think. I fancied the kit, more fun to get your hands dirty. Very hard to find a boattail kit now.
  15. OK, here's my try at posting Chris's 1916 ALF... ...seems to be working; all I did was resave it with a new filename and highest quality setting, like I said, boards are weird! Chris, thanks for mailing that, and it would be fantastic to see your progress with this project as you go along, hint hint!