Doc Boyce-Smith was busy putting together the materials people needed so that they could build their fiberglass sports cars in ’55. He wanted his customers to be successful in every way.
Recently I wrote about his first effort in the same year to share with interested folks how to build their own fiberglass body from scratch. Click here to review that story and booklet produced and sold by Victress Manufacturing.
But Doc Boyce-Smith wasn’t done. He wanted to share what he learned about how to build a frame for a Victress Sports Car – and how to do it right. In fact, Victress advertised both booklets starting in the June ’55 issue of Motor Trend with the following copy:
Special Offer: We have assembled all the know-how you need for fiberglass construction and design…a book on building fiberglass bodies, complete plans on frame modifications and Victress’ new 24 page catalogue will be sent to you for the bargain price of just $1
That’s probably the most reasonable cost concerning any instructions for building a sports car that a young man could buy back then.
The booklet on “Frame Modification” produced by Victress in ’55 covered four main approaches to building a frame– with illustrations too. The main sections were:
- Construction Notes For Modifying 1941 Ford Chassis For Use With Victress S4 Body
- Instructions For Modifying 1939 and 1940 Ford Chassis to Fit Victress S1A Body
- Instructions for Lowering Frames of MG Models TD and TF
- Fabrication of a Tubular Frame For Victress S1 Body
Let’s take a look at what each of these sections had to say.
Construction Notes For Modifying 1941 Ford Chassis For Use With Victress S4 Body
Instructions For Modifying 1939 and 1940 Ford Chassis to Fit Victress S1A Body
Instructions for Lowering Frames of MG Models TD and TF (S5)
Fabrication of a Tubular Frame For Victress S1 Body
Illustrations In Frame Modification Booklet
The illustrations provided in this booklet were incredibly important and immensely beneficial to the potential builder of a Victress sports car frame.
I’ve scanned close-ups of each of these illustrations so let’s have a look. And remember..as with any image here at Forgotten Fiberglass, use your mouse and click directly on the image to make it appear larger on your screen.
Frame Modification Booklet: Victress Manufacturing 1955:
For reference purposes, here is the 4-page booklet reproduced below. This is the size of an 11” x 17” piece of paper folded in half:
As you go thru the detail in the Victress “Frame Modification Booklet,” you’ll notice that it covers Victress S1A, S4, and S5 models. But modification instructions for the Victress Coupes designed by Merrill Powell were not included.
I don’t think Doc had it “in” for Merrill. Let’s see what Merrill Powell has to say in the comments below. While we wait for his comments, I’ll begin reviewing our Victress documentation to see if we can find instructions for frame modifications that are inclusive of the Victress C2 and C3 Coupes.
Hope you enjoyed the story, and until next time…
Glass on gang…
Click on the Images Below to View Larger Pictures
It’s great to be reminded of all of the “INSTRUCTIONS” that we produced regarding,
“Now that you have the fiberglass body, here’s watcha do next.” We found that we
fine tuned OUR initial assembly notes/photographs/drawings while we assembled a running vehicle or two, then published these in the form of a generally step-by-step process/format. (a process akin to ‘reverse engineering’) Harry Heim was a superb teacher, very patient, asked clarifying questions to a customers who phoned him,; he would inquire of their ‘learning style’, as he answered their queries.
Building a chassis is a complicated task and the art of sectioning the chassis as described in here is quite brilliant. An incredibly elegant solution to an otherwise daunting task. Great piece.