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Kirkham Motorsports

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  #1 (permalink)  
Old 06-06-2019, 02:18 PM
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Default Leather hood straps

I always love the look of leather straps for securing hoods on cars. Was that ever done on Cobras? Anyone have any examples, original or otherwise?
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Old 06-07-2019, 11:33 AM
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Not original to these cars....
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Old 06-07-2019, 08:39 PM
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With the hoods opening as they do, I see no need for straps to hold them closed. I guess that a Cobra hood could inadvertently fly open if the car was going backward very fast, there were no latches installed, and the car hit a severe bump wilst rapidly going the forementioned ass-backwards direction.
I'm thinking if all this were to happen, popping the bonnet would be the least of your worries.

Buy a Morgan, straps probably included.
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Old 06-07-2019, 09:41 PM
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Austin Healey 100M's had forward tilt bonnet and straps were standard. That said, I've never seen a Cobra with them or an Ace for that matter. Not sure the reason.
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Old 06-08-2019, 11:36 PM
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I know the owner of CSX7027 had them installed but I am unaware of any Cobras in period having had this done.
As I always say, it's your car do what you like to it.
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Old 06-11-2019, 02:36 AM
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Here's 7027. Nice looking car




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Old 06-11-2019, 02:11 PM
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Our shop has done a lot of work on that Cobra over the years, most recently replacing the fuel cell with a standard fuel tank and the "Blue Streak" tire treatment to BF Goodrich TAs.
We did not however install the leather hood strap.
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Old 06-11-2019, 06:56 PM
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My understanding of the leather bonnet straps on Healey 100Ms were required by LeMans regulations and if you look at LeMans entries from 1954, it seems all the entrants had leather retaining straps of some kind. Never saw them on a Cobra, though, and I guess the LeMans regulations changed in later years.
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Old 06-12-2019, 05:35 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HealeyRick View Post
My understanding of the leather bonnet straps on Healey 100Ms were required by LeMans regulations and if you look at LeMans entries from 1954, it seems all the entrants had leather retaining straps of some kind. Never saw them on a Cobra, though, and I guess the LeMans regulations changed in later years.
We used straps on our old 100-4 race car - for evil reasons. We left the straps a little loose so that the hood raised up at speed to allow air out of the engine compartment. (That probably only worked because there was no windshield.)
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Old 06-12-2019, 09:15 AM
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cobra owners only use leather straps in the bedroom.
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Old 06-12-2019, 11:27 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HealeyRick View Post
....I guess the LeMans regulations changed in later years.
Hmm - the Le Mans regulations changed by the minute, depending on what the French contestants were running. Bit similar to the Monte Carlo Rally of the same period, really.
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Old 06-12-2019, 04:52 PM
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Quote:
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Hmm - the Le Mans regulations changed by the minute, depending on what the French contestants were running. Bit similar to the Monte Carlo Rally of the same period, really.
When I was a kid in the early '60s I wanted to build a replica of the LeMans course for my slot cars and wrote away to the track for a map. They sent me a full entrant package with all the regs. It was about 3/8" thick of standard letter-size paper with an amazing amount of requirements

Quote:
Originally Posted by strictlypersonl View Post
We used straps on our old 100-4 race car - for evil reasons. We left the straps a little loose so that the hood raised up at speed to allow air out of the engine compartment. (That probably only worked because there was no windshield.)
My Healey 3000 was an SCCA racer and used the same idea lifting the rear of the hood for cooling. Sunbeam Tigers would do this, too.

I have to confess I'm a bit enamored of the leather strap look and added one to my Ford-powered Healey even though it wasn't a feature on the later cars like mine. And in order to add some extra cooling (and look a little more like a 100M,) I've added some louvers, too. (The mismatched paint has since been remedied)




One of my favorite quotes from Burt Levy's "Last Open Road"
when describing a Cad Allard:

"My God, what a beast that car was! The grille was nothing but a huge chromium sneer and there were scoops and vents and louvers chopped all over the place to let the heat breathe out (or cool air in, I could never figure out which) and you couldn't miss how they had the hood buttoned down with no less than five separate butterfly fasteners and two great wide leather straps, each one hefty enough to harness a prize bull. Whatever monstrous kind of motor was in there, they weren't taking any chances on it breaking out."
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Last edited by HealeyRick; 06-12-2019 at 05:12 PM..
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Old 06-13-2019, 03:00 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HealeyRick View Post
I have to confess I'm a bit enamored of the leather strap look and added one to my Ford-powered Healey even though it wasn't a feature on the later cars like mine. And in order to add some extra cooling (and look a little more like a 100M,) I've added some louvers, too. (The mismatched paint has since been remedied)



I so nearly became a 'nasty boy' myself - I got bored restoring my last Healey in the late nineties, a '56 100/6, and fitted a 351W. I took a lot of time getting the driveline angles right and fabbing up all the mounts and bulkhead mods for the motor and toploader, but couldn't work out an easy way to fit steering gear so put it all back to stock and sold it. I'm guessing you have the narrower 289? Something I always fancied doing.
Roger

Edit - sorry, that was lazy - I just read your link, great stuff. The 302 is narrower than the 351 which is why you just got away with the stock steering. Also I was converting to RHD which seems to take up more room on the right side of the engine bay.
...and I have every single album BS&T ever released. Wasn't too bothered by Spinning Wheel, but nothing comes close to Hi-de-ho, and theirs is the best version of Fire and Rain I know. They were around at exactly the right time for a 16-yr-old aspiring jazz bass trombonist...

Last edited by rsk289; 06-13-2019 at 03:08 AM..
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