dWRENCHED SPECIAL

    To understand the present, you have to understand and respect the past. 

   This was a small piece of my mind as I was figuring out how to introduce this new dWrenched Special. While it may not be ''fresh'' in the die-heart hot rod elite, the homage to the 1917 ''Golden Submarine'' is a forever cool piece to (re)bring into the spot lights.

Had this one saved in the ''to do'' list for a year or so hoping that some day I'll be mature enough to start the quest of revealing this beauty again. While I'm still in the dark about my own maturization thing... this is the story of the original Golden Submarine and of it's homage built by Webb Automotive Art.

  Let's start with the beginning, shall we ?
The 1917 Golden Submarine racer was and forever will be a sublime iconic figure of the pioneers of streamlining. Designed and built by Harry A. Miller and heavily inpired from the airplane aerodinamic cockpic in the early years of motorsport.





     ''This extreme custom "stick rod" was built by Harry A. Miller for racing driver Barney Oldfield. The car looked almost jet-powered when the smoke came out...'' - a very cool paragraphed I found on Dark Roasted Blend so I left it unaltered.

    Besides it's unfamiliar design, adding a golden shade finish paint was the cherry on top of it all. And indeed, it would have been something out of this world to stand next to the Sub, let alone to hear it and watching it move.

''Oldfield, already an American legend from his velodrome heroics, drove this hugely innovative automobile called the Golden Submarine. Its four-cylinder engine was a harbinger of the Offenhauser that Miller’s designs did so much to inspire''. - Hemmings

''The original Golden Submarine’s enclosed bodywork was conceived as a safety improvement after it’s builder – the famed racing driver Barney Oldfield - lost a friend and rival in a racing accident in 1916.'' -via Piston Heads



 August 18, 1917. Racecar driver Barney Oldfield in the cockpit of his Golden Submarine at the Sheepshead Bay speed carnival in Brooklyn. 5x7 glass negative, George Grantham Bain Collection

 So how do you pay tribute to sucha special build ?!

        Interested in reintroducing to the world the beauty of the Sub, the Ridler awarded Dan Webb's of Webb Automotive Art started building a more present-modern-period-correct (if that makes any sense to you) homage. The Stub of the 21st century if you like. Webb teamed up back then in 2006 when the project took off with the automotive illustrator Thom Taylor and metal craftsman Craig Naff to build the car. 







    Three years of work after, the superb machine was revealed in completed form at the Autorama Rod & Custom show in Detroit in 2009. As you can imagine, the media and the whole hot rod community loved it.  

 Modern on the outside... modern on the inside baby. Hand-beaten aluminium body. Hand made drilled for lightness frame. The creme du la creme of hot rodding.  Aluminium body, aluminium engine. The Webb's Sub  is powered by a Ford Racing 4 cylinder Zetec ZX3 crate engine that runs on alcohol. Capable of 175 hp's delivered to a propshaft between the driver’s legs. Enclosed drivehaft, a billet in-and-out box and a billet quickchange. It's been said that the car weighs less than 1000 pounds.














     There was another replica being built by an unknown fan of the original Golden Submarine but not many infos about it. As you can see, this reinterpretation it's more a tribute to the original-classic look of the Sub. 



      Even so, the Subs are a pure living proof that us as humans will always be fascinated by wind and air, shapes and going fast. On the road, in the air... Always going fast(er) baby !









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