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Which engine did Arzens use?


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Posted (edited)

Paul Arzens built this car:

 

0603-93-arzensx2.jpg

 

...in 1938. It's now in the Schlumpf museum in France and there are many mentions of it on the internet.

 

The sign beside the car says its engine is 3.5-litres and other information from the internet says it's built on a '28 Buick chassis and has 214 cubic inches. Well, 214 cubic inches is close to 3.5-litres, so we'll ride with that.

 

But what engine is it? Was there a six of that size in the Buick line-up at that time? I have found nowhere that anyone mentions the make of engine, but a number of places where the chassis make is mentioned.

 

All help keenly appreciated.

Edited by Ray Bell (see edit history)
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  • 3 weeks later...

Well, this is the very first time I've come to this forum and not got an answer...

 

Does anybody know what engine might have been in a '28 Buick of about the 214 cubic inch size?

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Posted (edited)

As incredible as it seems I believe nearly all the running gear used is 1928 Buick. 

 

The 1928 Buick six cylinder motors were 207 cubic inch actual HP of 63 ( Standard ) and 274 cubic inch HP 77 for the Master.

 

Some of the interior shots show even the original 1928 instruments have been used. Note severe bends inflicted on the gear shift and brake levers to suit the new seating arrangements. 

 

 

2010-1-29_BalineControlsWeb-Large.jpg

Edited by 50jetback
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1 hour ago, 50jetback said:

As incredible as it seems I believe nearly all the running gear used is 1928 Buick. 

 

The 1928 Buick six cylinder motors were 207 cubic inch actual HP of 63 ( Standard ) and 274 cubic inch HP 77 for the Master.

 

Some of the interior shots show even the original 1928 instruments have been used. Note severe bends inflicted on the gear shift and brake levers to suit the new seating arrangements.

 

Quite incredible, Stuart, thank you...

 

Perhaps he bored the engine a little and perhaps did a little 'hotting up' to get some better performance to get the claimed 100mph.

 

Where did you get the interior photo? Are there more interesting shots there?

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I did some more hunting around and found a similar photo...

 

0603-93a-arzensinterior.jpg

 

The steering wheel doesn't look pre-war, though, and it's certainly not 1928. But as the car was in use right up into modern times it wouldn't be a surprise to learn that modifications were made through all those years.

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Posted (edited)

An engine photo would be nice...

 

Come to think of it, the rear end would have to have been changed. Or an overdrive fitted. The wheels on the 1938 car would surely have been of a smaller diameter than those of the 1928 Buick. Turning them quick enough to do 100mph would have been a real test of that engine.

 

 

Edited by Ray Bell (see edit history)
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Arzens was an artist not a mechanic. I get the impression he was more concerned with the visual aspects of this car than its mechanical performance. The steering wheel is from a much later car, even later than the 1938 rebuild and looks mid 50's to me.

 

Original wheels on a 1928 are 21" - Arzens' wheels are certainly large diameter and narrow suggesting they are original but with a large covering or hubcap.

 

Do they claim this car could achieve 100MPH? Top speed of a standard 1928 Buick is listed at around 65 - 70 MPH. The drum speedometer as used by Arzens tops out at 85.

I think if the figure of 100 is used it would be 100 kilometres per hour which is around 60MPH.

 

I have read that the enormous rear section of the car was to enable Arzen to transport his framed canvases. It's hard to believe that this is what lurks beneath that beautiful 1938 bodywork

 

post-31244-143137960661_thumb.jpg 

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It's hard not to agree with you on all of that...

 

And the sign was as optimistic as the car, then? It says 160kmh, I had translated that.

 

And who is that at, I guess, Lake Perkolilli?

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Graeme is mistaken in thinking that small-engined cars ruled the roost in the Eastern states...

 

In the Australian Grand Prix that was the way things went simply because that race was run, from 1928 to 1935, by the Light Car Club of Australia. When they relinquished the race there was a plethora of cars already there larger than their 2-litre limit.

 

Hudsons were prominent, but various Fords, Oldsmobiles and others came in quickly because they were racing at other places like Penrith and Maroubra Speedways and competing in open road trial events. The big 5-litre Indianapolis Ballot had been in Australia since 1928 or 1929, imported to race at Maroubra.

 

One thing in that piece I never knew about was a triangular course at Lake Perkollili, I knew there was a circle and a circle with chicanes, I must talk to Terry Walker about this.

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