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Kirkham Motorsports

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Old 03-27-2020, 09:38 PM
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Talking Looking to buy my first Cobra 427 S/C in Oz

G'Day All

I have just started posting on this site a few days ago and now have discovered this local forum for us guys down under. Great!?
I have long been a lover of the AC Cobra 427 and over the years I have owned many various sports cars (even a Bolwell Nagari at one time of which I'm sure you guys have heard of) mostly Alfa's and over the last 10 years now Ferrari's my current car being a 2004 360 Spider (Manual) which I love dearly.

But I have never faltered in my passion for a really good 'authentic' 427 copy (is that an oxymoron?) and now that I am an old grumpy man with a bit of money for toys I'm looking to add a sibling to my Ferrari (they should get on famously right) Just found this site and have joined up confident that I will learn much from the local natives on their home grown product

The big problem in Oz is twofold. Getting a good one (there is allot of real kit car quality crap out here) and getting one that is as authentic as possible in its looks, sound and feel. There are many great brands out there vying for my money such as Superformance, Backdraft, EBA, Factory Five, DAX, Robnell and even some good local Oz brands such as Absolute Pace and their Pace 427 which has a truly inspiring chassis, a sight to behold, but not what I am looking for!?
I want to have a car with the look and feel of an original 427 as much as possible and not necessarily paying $USD 250,000 for the privilege. We have an agent here in Melbourne for Superformance who are the only licensed manufacturer outside of Shelby themselves who seem to have a good authentic body with accurate dimensions and a good solid chassis under it using typically a selection of Rousch engines.

I would love to import a car from the US but this opens up a minefield of shipping costs and compliance issues. I also see that Shelby themselves have the CSX6000 continuation cars but I don’t think they are available in Oz and have no idea on price for them.

So from this vast pool of knowledge what would you guys consider if you were in my shoes what would you buy. Remember I don’t want a 1000 HP supercharged mammoth fire breathing monster, I am looking for authenticity in looks, feel and even sound for a 427 right down to the 15" Good Year Eagle Billboard tyres which I think are an amazing look. 500 to 600 HP will be more than enough

I have many questions....

I'm based in Melbourne and so far Superformance is an obvious contender for me. Generally speaking, in terms of a more affordable glass bodied copy, I'm confident I can get the body trim, wheels/tyres, interior etc. looking pretty authentic to a 65/66 427 AC but I have some questions about the following;

Colour

I love the royal blue and indigo blue however again I want to be period correct. What were the official blue's used on the 427s at the time? What was the most popular? Can you still get the same colour?

Engine

Of course a key element and where possible I want to try to stay true to the marque. Fair to say I can't get a genuine small block 427 FE side oiler nowadays however there seems to be a plethora of suppliers offering 'crate engines' said to be built to original 60's style. Short of buying a 'continuation car' from Shelby with its Shelby motor Roush seems to come up as the best option (please correct me if wrong). I am aware of the Shelby ALUMINUM 427 FE; 468CID (550HP) but it an all-aluminium motor (not period) and rather pricy! Any suggestion for a good engine, a good copy/alternative to a 427 FE Side Oiler ?

Transmission

All I know is they used a 4 speed top loader and that everyone seems to like Tremec boxes. Is that true and what model would be best? Again happy to stay true to 4 speed however I belive the 5 speed tremec is the best choice nowadays. What are your thoughts on transmissions?

Differential

The original car used a Salisbury 4HU differential and rear axle and as far as I can see you can still get them relatively easily. So I guess my thoughts are on that for now! Your thoughts?

Brakes/Suspension

Unless I'm prepared to pay big $$ for a continuation car I have to be realistic in terms of my bid for 'authenticity'. I'm not so fussed with this part as I accept it has to be of a modern standard however not looking for 6 pot Brembo with machined/drilled ventilated discs or carbon fibre for that matter ! Again Superformance seem to have a good solid chassis and brakes/suspension offering as standard. What do you think?
I appreciate your taking the time to give me some of your learned thoughts

Best Regs from Oz
Andrew

Last edited by CobraAddict; 03-27-2020 at 09:55 PM..
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Old 03-27-2020, 11:44 PM
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hi andrew im building a absolute pace here in adelaide i love the way there built as for originality what about a kirkham my vies once there driving down the road the bloke alongside of you wont care what chassis it is or what engine it has there usually just in awe of the shape and sound .
you prob would not like my car as its running a LS and 6 speed auto even my shifter looks like a manual shifter from a original cobra hard to pick to you spot no clutch pedal..
if we build them took original they would be like t model fords all one color and everyones would look the same. there are some fantastic cars in some great colors beside the normal yawn blue and red yes mine is red lets see how long it stays red tho lol good luck in your hunt there are some great kits out there.. just another thing try and sit in as many different cars as you can as there all not buuilt the same inside room wise. cheers dean
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Old 03-28-2020, 01:35 AM
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Welcome to the addiction.

There's a Kirkham for sale in Melbourne at the moment.

You can't beat it for quality or authenticity.
Kirkham are the blue ribbon, gold standard of cobra. They are Aluminium too. Not fiberglass.
Lucky you - its in your preferred colour too.

It has all the correct details even a 427 (stroked) FE Shelby in it from memory.

Check out this 2015 AC Cobra.
https://www.carsales.com.au/cars/det...SSE-AD-5825603

It's not mine, but I do know the guy. (Full disclosure).

Having driven a Ferrari like yours and a kirkham... i cam tell you they are chalk and cheese. The kirkham will scare the pants off you


Good luck with your search.
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Old 03-28-2020, 09:28 AM
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The OP also has a thread in the general discussion part of the forum:

Looking to buy my first Cobra 427 in Oz

I suggested he cross link here.
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Old 03-28-2020, 09:33 AM
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As for colors, there are standard Colors like Guardsman Blue. But when I was at the Barrett Jackson in Vegas in October and spoke with the owner of Superformance he said they are widening their marketing. There are two classes of Cobra buyers - us "old farts" that tend towards more originality but there are newer buyers that aren't locked into originality and are wanting a wide variety of colors and even interior changes like the dash and including things like radios. SPF will build those too - but they are extra and since one offs, priced on time and materials.
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Old 03-28-2020, 09:35 AM
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Are you required to have right-hand drive on a Cobra? I believe that Shelby in some of the anniversary editions has said they will have RHD as an option.
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Old 03-30-2020, 03:24 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by twobjshelbys View Post
Are you required to have right-hand drive on a Cobra? I believe that Shelby in some of the anniversary editions has said they will have RHD as an option.
Actually no we can register LHD cars here in Oz now under club permts.
However I would really perfer a RHD car simply as that is what I am used to and what better fits our roads. Rememebr we drive on the right side... right
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Old 03-30-2020, 03:27 AM
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Originally Posted by CobraAddict View Post
Actually no we can register LHD cars here in Oz now under club permts.
However I would really perfer a RHD car simply as that is what I am used to and what better fits our roads. Rememebr we drive on the right side... right
I did email Shelby American about their CSX6000 - 427 S/C COBRA however had no reply so I can only assume they have no prescence in Australia. I tried to find any local representative however nothing came up. A bloody shame thats for sure.
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Old 03-30-2020, 03:33 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by twobjshelbys View Post
As for colors, there are standard Colors like Guardsman Blue. But when I was at the Barrett Jackson in Vegas in October and spoke with the owner of Superformance he said they are widening their marketing. There are two classes of Cobra buyers - us "old farts" that tend towards more originality but there are newer buyers that aren't locked into originality and are wanting a wide variety of colors and even interior changes like the dash and including things like radios. SPF will build those too - but they are extra and since one offs, priced on time and materials.
Your spot on there buddy. And yes I am one of those old farts who want that authentic experience right down to the 4 speed top loader. And if I can find one a 427FE (or as close as possible) of some description
There are soooo many hot rods out there wher I think they are only intereetd in the 'ideology' of a Cobra and not the car itself. Some I have seen truely beg the question, why bother weher the only remnants of the original Cobra is the body shape
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Old 03-30-2020, 03:38 AM
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A big decision for me is which engine to use. There are sooooo many crate engine suppliers out there..!?!!? Are Roush the preferred option?

Keep in mind I want a 427 (not a bored stroked stretched twisted 351 etc) what do you recommend?

1/ Money no option?

2/ Authentic as possible at a realistic price?
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Old 03-30-2020, 08:31 AM
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The 427 that Roush makes is a stroked small block 351 based.

Their smallest and cheapest FE based (big block) is a 511 cu @ approx $29K US.
https://www.roushperformance.com/engines/511-srfe.html

Personally I'd try sourcing the engine in-country. If there are warranty issues later (chances are there will be) you won't be stuck with freight to-from the US.

I'd definitely lean on your Countrymen for advise and "been-there-done-that" experience.
From what I've seen Stateside looking at AU. The Smog laws are tough. The cars invariably are running Chevy LS injected, catted engines. What cars are running Ford engines are 4.6 Modular or 5.0 Coyote catted engines. I may be totally off-base though. Finding that 427FE big block Kirkam to the other day that I posted was the 1st street legal Cobra I've ever seen in AU with a Carbed Ford engine.
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Old 03-30-2020, 10:46 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CobraAddict View Post
I did email Shelby American about their CSX6000 - 427 S/C COBRA however had no reply so I can only assume they have no prescence in Australia. I tried to find any local representative however nothing came up. A bloody shame thats for sure.
A RHD car will limit you to an in-country purchase or a special order. A special order will come at a premium over a standard LHD.

As far as communicating with Shelby or any US based business, with coronavirus/COVID-19 shutting down everything I sincerely doubt there is anyone at any business. Anywhere. I live in Las Vegas (about 3 miles from where Shelby American is located) and I can tell you that the Clark County Sheriff (where Shelby is located) is now shutting down businesses that don't fall into "necessary" categories, and I don't think Shelby fits.

But you might also try Hillbank or DenBeste. They are both in California and are probably forced closed too.
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Last edited by twobjshelbys; 03-30-2020 at 10:52 AM..
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Old 03-30-2020, 04:00 PM
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Just buy a "real" one so the rest of the hot rodders can see why theirs isnt real.. ....
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Old 03-30-2020, 04:34 PM
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Actually no we can register LHD cars here in Oz now under club permts....
Actually....yes, I believe that's correct for you guys in Victoria but no, definitely not the case here in South Australia. No LHD recent builds allowed here for ICVs.
However, a 30+ year old car can be imported to South Australia as a LHD and registered.

Wouldn't that be nice if we had commonality across all States?


Cheers, and stay well!
Glen
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Last edited by xb-60; 03-30-2020 at 06:02 PM.. Reason: 30+
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Old 03-31-2020, 12:28 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CobraAddict View Post
A big decision for me is which engine to use. There are sooooo many crate engine suppliers out there..!?!!? Are Roush the preferred option?

Keep in mind I want a 427 (not a bored stroked stretched twisted 351 etc) what do you recommend?

1/ Money no option?

2/ Authentic as possible at a realistic price?
Roush - Not my preferred. They do have nice valecovers... but after that seemingly you pay for the name.

If money was no option - I do what I did again!

As for "Authentic" pls define the word.
I dont mean to be a smart a$$ but peoples expectations of "Authentic" differ. Feel free to pm me... happy to discuss further and share my experiences.

Best wishes
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Old 03-31-2020, 03:26 AM
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You would be well versed to see if you can find someone brave enough to let you drive a Cobra that has close to what you are looking for, so you can then make an informed decision on whether or not that combination would work for you.
Sometimes expectations and reality can differ somewhat.
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Old 03-31-2020, 04:47 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by spdbrake View Post
The 427 that Roush makes is a stroked small block 351 based.

Their smallest and cheapest FE based (big block) is a 511 cu @ approx $29K US.
https://www.roushperformance.com/engines/511-srfe.html

Personally I'd try sourcing the engine in-country. If there are warranty issues later (chances are there will be) you won't be stuck with freight to-from the US.

I'd definitely lean on your Countrymen for advise and "been-there-done-that" experience.
From what I've seen Stateside looking at AU. The Smog laws are tough. The cars invariably are running Chevy LS injected, catted engines. What cars are running Ford engines are 4.6 Modular or 5.0 Coyote catted engines. I may be totally off-base though. Finding that 427FE big block Kirkam to the other day that I posted was the 1st street legal Cobra I've ever seen in AU with a Carbed Ford engine.

It varies quite a bit from state to state. Being in Victoria I am able to register the car under our 'Club Permit' scheme as it is recognised as a 65/66 reproduction and therefore qualifies as grerater than 25 years old and hence able to get club permit rego. With this you can pretty much do what you want ie. hot rods etc. I believe its only when you go for 'full registration' you get hit with all the hurdles.

Last edited by CobraAddict; 03-31-2020 at 05:10 AM..
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Old 03-31-2020, 04:50 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by spookypt View Post
Just buy a "real" one so the rest of the hot rodders can see why theirs isnt real.. ....

We have a $AUD 40 Million Tatslotto tonight. I'll let you know how I go
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Old 03-31-2020, 04:55 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by xb-60 View Post
Actually....yes, I believe that's correct for you guys in Victoria but no, definitely not the case here in South Australia. No LHD recent builds allowed here for ICVs.
However, a 30+ year old car can be imported to South Australia as a LHD and registered.

Wouldn't that be nice if we had commonality across all States?


Cheers, and stay well!
Glen

Yeah for sure. I see allot of LHD Mustangs and Corvettes now at various car shows and growing numbers of old massive American tanks, Dodges, Chey's, Cadllacs (sooo effing big too ) etc.

Definately a growing trend here. I've driven LHD many times in my travels but its just not the same. Its still weird to me no matter how long I spend behind the wheel
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Old 03-31-2020, 05:13 AM
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[quote=spdbrake;1474094]The 427 that Roush makes is a stroked small block 351 based.

Their smallest and cheapest FE based (big block) is a 511 cu @ approx $29K US.
https://www.roushperformance.com/engines/511-srfe.html

Personally I'd try sourcing the engine in-country. If there are warranty issues later (chances are there will be) you won't be stuck with freight to-from the US.



I didn't know the Roush 427 was also a stroked 351. Sooo much to learn here

I would love to source one locally however have not yet found anyone that offers such a thing. It seems to be very much an American thing !!
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