There’s not many of these Devin Jr’s around, and what fun it would be to have a miniature of your favorite fiberglass car – in this case a Devin – zooming around your home, garage, and family.
Zoom Zoom fiber gang 🙂
It’s interesting to note that Devin offered two models of the Junior:
- Deluxe Model: This had safety semi-flexible windshield, padded headrest, washable two-tone upholstery, and air-cooled engine. All for $319
- Standard Model: Has same sleek body and sturdy chassis but did not incorporate headrest or windshield. Upholstery is one color with contrasting piping. Powered by 2 horsepower air-cooled engine. Standard model cost $295.
As you review the pages of the brochure, note the specifications. The wheelbase is 49” – heck that’s not too far away from some of the smaller versions of our favorite vintage ‘glass cars – the track/width is a bit wider though. So…let’s have a look at the brochure gang.
The Great New Devin Junior Brochure
Gas Engine Powered Miniature Sports Car
The Devin Jr. (Molds) Exist!
Yes – some molds did survive from the ‘50s forward, and Dick Jutras is the current owner and proprietor of the Devin namesake.
A few years ago, I visited Jim at his home near Los Angeles, California and was able to take photos of some of the history he has concerning Devin. And of course, one of the items he shared with me was the mold for the Devin Jr., shown below. Great designs can’t be hidden gang…
It’s interesting that the current version of the mold incorporates the headrest in the body. No doubt the small price difference between the Standard and Deluxe Models of the Devin Jr didn’t necessitate keeping these parts separate so the mold that exists today may be Devin’s revision. Just my thoughts and as always, research continues.
Great thanks to Dick Jutras for sharing the Devin Jr. brochure with us today. Much appreciated Dick!
So what other vintage ‘glass cars had smaller versions of themselves? More than you might think. Let’s discuss!
- The best known of these was the “Brushfire” made by Woody Woodill.
- A small version of the Almquist was known to exist – last reported in Florida.
- And brochures from Meteor showed that a smaller version called the “Meteorite” was offered by the company that Dick Jones sold it to in the late ‘50s. Dick later took back the company and no “Meteorite” molds were found, so it may have been a goal – but not realized by this company.
- And of course there are the “Autopia” cars from Disney, designed by Bob Gurr. But those were designed from the start to be small. Anyone want to scale-up a Bob Gurr designed Autopia car?
So be on the lookout and see what you can find out there gang. But remember…look at floor level – these are not that large and you could easily miss one that might be hiding in someone’s garage 🙂
Hope you enjoyed the story, and until next time…
Glass on gang…
Click on the Images Below to View Larger Pictures
When I was 10 or 12 years old we drove to San Gabriel, California in I think 1964 and my Uncle, Bill Burke gave me a go kart. It had a fiberglass sports car body on it. I still have the car. It looks in many ways to be a Devin Jr body. The chassis is different from the Devin Jr chassis. I am trying to find out if Bill Burke, one of The Fathers of Fiberglass build the original molds for the Devin Jr. If anyone knows more about this I would sure appreciate any information. My friends and I spent many hours driving it and even flipped it once with 2 of us in the car. No one was hurt. I heard Bil Burke made 6 or 8 of the Devin bodys. I have a 3 1/2 Briggs in it. It runs General Jumbo Jr. Tires. Many years ago I wrote General to tell them about running their tires. They never wrote back. A cloverleaf tread on the rears and ribbed fronts. When I restored the chassis the tires had never had a puncture. I run Chen Shing tires so as not to wear out the originals.
Hey Scott, is thread still active? I picked something up that sounds pretty similar to what you have and was wondering if I sent you some pictures, could you help me identify exactly what it is?
Thank you for creating your website. My father gave me a Devin Junior Deluxe for my birthday in the summer of 1959. On that day, I couldn’t get it away from him and his friends, who came to our house for its uncreating. They said they wanted to “teach me” how to drive it, then gunned it all over our unsuspecting neighborhood streets in Jacksonville, Florida, dodging cars until well after dark.
Fortunately, our Devin remained intact and is now fully restored, but we replaced the original Continental engine (a staple as a good quarter midget stock racing engine, but simply too hard to start generally – as I suspect many a starter-rope arm can attest) with a less potent but more practical Briggs & Stratton. Our Devin arrived with Moon spun-aluminum wheel covers, which were somewhat popular during those early days in go-kart racing. I removed them back then as the exposed wheels looked more like a real sports car, the idea of which appealed to me as a kid.
Good to see that there is a remembrance and appreciation for Bill Devin and one of his very fine and enduring creations.
Beverly Hills, California
Hey Tommy! Do you still have the original moon caps? I spoke to my dad today and asked if his car had the caps still which it doesn’t. He said he remembers taking off 3 screws to release the covers. I have a deluxe model and it has bumpers too. I’m curious to see how different these cars were each time they were made. If you get a chance, I’d love to chat. I’m a firefighter in Burbank. I could swing by sometime and catch up on Devin Jr.s
I recently acquired a Devin Jr from my father. His father bought it for the family new. Its a deluxe model in decent shape. I will be doing a restoration this month or so. It will go to powercoat and get a great red paint job. Ill keep you posted.
I am in Orange also. I have some great history on these cars, please contact me about yours. Thanks
There is an early photo of Bill Devin’s warehouse showing a lot of Devin bodies in racks. Bill used that photo to get a bank loan, showing how many car bodies he had ready to ship. If you look closely, they are Devin Junior bodies, not full size Devin sportscar bodies.
Hi Kreg….I have a Devin Jr., and Guy Dirkin owns two of them. Dick Jutras also has one. Several other people have written in with Devin Jr., also 🙂 Geoff
Very cool stuff. A few years ago, while watching American Pickers, I spotted a fiberglass body hanging from the rafters in someone garage. I emailed Geoff with a photo of the TV screen, which I paused, and we figured that it may have been a Devin
Jr. body. – They are out there.
I should also mention that there is a small version of the Kaiser Darrin. I’m not sure how old the molds for this are, but know that you can get currently get them.
The car on American Pickers is Paul Gorrell’s Devin. It’s a special based on a Crosley Hot Shot Super Sport.
I only knew of 3 Devin Jr’s, now 4 with Dave Perry’s.
My husband’s dad bought him a Classic Devin Jr. in 1957 or 1958. He had many fun years with it. We brought it to our “home away from home’ and our children had many many years also. I am now having it restored as a surprise for my husband.
Beyond fine… hard to imagine that they could produce those and even make a few bucks at that price.
Bill must have really enjoyed what he did, and very proud of his cars, to go through the effort to build just a few of these……….. We have the “Collins Boys ” Devin Jr here at the shop in Alabama, in primer, and ready for finish paint to compliment someones full size Devin. . Michael Collins said it had been in their family for about 40 years, before he sold it to me., The body was in undamaged condition, and the car was complete, except for the engine which ‘The Boys’ had worn out.. It’s the “Deluxe” model, with the padded seat and headrest, and the rare hood emblem, which we had Paul’s Chrome restore at a cost of over 250 dollars. One of the few Jr’s still around, that have the Devin chassis, I’ve been told…and probably the only one to still have the original Moon (marked Moon) spun aluminum hubcaps that show in the picture of the Standard model. If we don’t sell it, eventually we’ll paint it and send it to Barber MotorSport Museum. Michael said that Bill was thrilled to learn this Jr was still around … I expect he would be smiling to know it was on display.
Keep up the good work , Geoff
Dave Perry OldSchool Restorations of North Alabama
That’s not much smaller than my Berkeley SE 328.