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THE STORY OF BEAUJANGLE SALES/ENTERPRISES – A KITCAR COMPANY VERY MUCH OF THEIR TIME

Steve Hole tells the story of Manchester-based Beaujangle Sales Ltd. Images by Carol Hardy

Salford, Manchester-based company run by Nik Sandeman-Allen, a glassfibre specialist and well-known drag racer, Phil ‘Ziggy’ Smith.

The pair were passionate hot rod enthusiasts and ran separate operations (Smith as Mr Beaujangle in an Opus HRF called ‘Anomalous’ with Daimler V8) until they amalgamated their businesses, becoming known for building all manner of bonkers vehicles from their lock-up in Back Tootal Lane, Salford, under the Beaujangle Enterprises name. However, they were known to rodders as ‘Bojay’.

Smith, an ace welder, had previously worked on oil rigs and German shipyards More >

THE STORY OF MAIL-ORDER PIONEER CHARLES CARD JR AND HIS HONEST CHARLEY SPEED SHOP OPERATION

Images courtesy of honestcharley.com

Here’s a first for our Classic Kit Cars & Specials series as we cross the pond and take a look at some heroes and icons from drag and short oval racing. We kick off with the automotive industry’s pioneer of mail-order shopping Charles Card Jr better known as Honest Charley. STEVE HOLE is our guide.

There are several things that make Charles Card Jr a very notable figure in the automotive aftermarket. He was the first to offer a mail-order service for go-faster speed parts. He was the second inductee into the Specialty Equipment Market Association’s (SEMA) Hall More >

THE STORY OF GEORGE ROBINSON’S VEGANTUNE VTA TWIN CAM

‘POWER IS A VEGAN ISSUE’ so said George Robinson of engine builders, Vegantune who also manufactured the Evante kit because he always felt that there was much more life in the Elan than Lotus realised.

Based in Cradge Bank, Spalding, Robinson and his business partner, John Sisme founded the Vegantune operation in 1965. Both were ex-BRM in Bourne and Robinson had latterly been responsible for building Graham Hill’s F1 engines. George’s son, Jeff and his son-in-law, Phil Gardner also later joined Vegantune

George was a Lotus enthusiast – he loved the Elan – and had developed a real liking for the 1558cc More >

D.A.R.T MINI SPECIAL AND THE AMAZING STORY OF DESMOND ‘DIZZY’ ADDICOTT

Desmond Gerald ‘Dizzy Addicott, born in Scotland in 1922, was one of life’s amazing characters and is regarded as one of the UK’s outstanding aviators. He was nicknamed ‘Dismal Desmond’ at school because of his unhappy persona, but he was anything but in later life. STEVE HOLE tells his story.

RAF CAREER AND TEST PILOT

When Desmond joined the RAF in 1941, he was immediately popular with his colleagues but regarded as a bit scatty, hence the amendment of his nickname to ‘Dizzy’. It is said that there was never a dull moment when he was around. The majority of his air More >

HANDS ON THE WHEEL – THE STEERING WHEELS OF PETER SPRINGALL AND ALSO SPRINGALEX

STEVE HOLE tells the story of Peter Springall, who along with VW Derrington and Mota-Lita changed the way we steered our cars with their after-market steering wheels that literally took off.

During the boom period of the go-faster accessories market of the sixties, the replacement steering wheel could, said the adverts, could turn your Corsair into a Lamborghini Miura. Hmmm. Maybe, but probably not, let’s be honest.

One of the first companies, if not the first, to attack the aftermarket was Vic Derrington with his wooden-rimmed steering wheel, which sold like the proverbial hot baked goods, for many years. Indeed, find one More >

REVERSE ENGINEERING – NERUS

STEVE HOLE tells the story of sixties tuning company NERUS ENGINEERING COMPANY Ltd

Pic courtesy of the excellent Imps4ever.co.uk web resource

The area around Rye, Hastings and Bexhill-on-Sea has a rich motorsport history, with the latter even laying claim to being the birthplace of British motorsport.

The heyday for the area was the sixties. We often talk about the ‘M40 corridor’ being the UK’s F1 hotbed, well this corner of East Sussex was its counterpart some sixty years ago.

Harry Weslake’s engineering company helped put Rye on the motorsport map with his work for Bentley, Austin, Jaguar and the JWA Ford GT40 Mk1. Setting More >

UPLIFTING

Machine Mart stocks a range of durable Clarke Trolley Jacks designed to assist you in the garage or workshop when working on a variety of vehicles.

The best-selling Clarke CTJ3000GB 3 Tonne Trolley Jack is specifically designed for the professional workspace and offers a lifting capacity of three tonnes. It features a super-strong chassis with heavy-duty wheels and castors, as well as a wide ‘footprint’ for stable use. The CTJ3000GB also features a long two-piece handle and comes with automatic overload protection. Priced at £131.98 inc VAT.

Saddle height: Min 136mm. Max 465mm

Dimensions (LWH): 572 x 328 x 175mm

Weight: 28.3kg

Another best-seller, the More >

SUPERSPEED (CONVERSIONS) LTD

STEVE HOLE tells the story of SUPERSPEED (CONVERSIONS) LTD

Another of the well-known sixties tuning companies was Ley Street, Ilford-based Superspeed (Conversions).

The men behind the company were brothers, John and Mike Young and their operation was part of and located next to, Ford dealer, Youngs of Ilford founded by their father, Mike Young senior.

They rose to prominence with their racing activities when John and Mike took their first steps in motorsport in their maroon-hued (actually a BMC colour called Crimson Lake) Fords.

John began his career in the British Saloon Car Championship (then running to Group 2 regulations) in 1962 in an More >

THE AQUAPLANE COMPANY LTD

STEVE HOLE pays his respects to a great old tuning name from the sixties, THE AQUAPLANE COMPANY LTD this week. If you had a Ford or a Mini in the sixties, they had a catalogue full of go-faster parts to tempt you with!

The Aquaplane Company Ltd was another famous old name of the sixties tuning and go faster scenes called founded by Harmer Copeman in 1954. They were based in Oulton Broad a suburb of Lowestoft in Suffolk.

Along with the likes of V.W Derrington and Alta, the Aquaplane name was a revered one.

Aquaplane’s biggest seller was their Superhead – pic More >

GUY SALMON MINI SPECIAL

The story of Guy Salmon and his car dealerships, plus the story of the Guy Salmon Mini GT

Born in 1913, Guy Salmon rose to become one of the UK’s leading car dealerships with dealers all over the country.

He borrowed £20 (now worth about £1000, allowing for inflation) from his mum to open his first dealership in 1934, on Brighton Road, Surbiton.

He drove a fire engine during WW2 and post-war he opened his first official Guy Salmon dealership in Thames Ditton in 1946. The site had made gun turrets for Bomber Command, although Salmon, aided by his brother Micky, sold Rolls-Royces More >