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A THREE WHEELER CALLED ‘DEREK, ROBERT & KEITH’ – AKA THE D.R.K

D.R.K THREE-WHEELER by STEVE HOLE Pix from TKC MAG Archive

What a great little car the D.R.K was, originally intended as a fun one-off but met with such critical acclaim that it went into series built-to-order production.

Its origins date back to the mid-eighties when friends, Derek Callister and Keith Hamer from Ellesmere Port, decided that after many years of messing around with cars it would be a real hoot to build their own.

They discussed ideas and came up with a short-list of requirements that the car needed to have such as front wheel drive, air-cooled four-cylinder engine, two-seater sports and aluminium More >

IT’S A HEATER BUT NOT A RADIATOR

The Clarke IT1500 is an easy-to-use portable induction heater kit suitable for use in garages and workshop environments.

This tool kit offers an energy-efficient design providing a safer and more economical alternative to brazing torches or similar heating methods. This product is supplied with a convenient carry case and an assortment of coils.

20mm, 26mm and 32mm Tubular Heating Coils: For heating nuts, fasteners, bolts, 02 sensors etc.

55mm Flat Heating Coil: For removing stickers, graphics, emblems, body mouldings etc.

295mm U-Shaped Coil: For performing the work of other coils but can be customised to remove and repair dents.

1000mm Flexible Coil: For clearing race More >

UNSUNG HEROES – JACK KNIGHT DEVELOPMENTS

A company that often gets forgotten these days, back in the fifties, sixties and seventies, Jack Knight Developments was one of the key companies supplying a variety of parts for Formula One teams downwards. STEVE HOLE looks at the company’s history who was Jack Knight for a start?

Jack Knight was a toolmaker by trade with a keen interest in speedway and motorcycle racing. He and his friend, motorcycle racer, Charlie Smith produced a variety of parts for other races and built up a good reputation for rebuilding big-end assemblies.

This led to them building their own Formula 500cc car, which it More >

THE STORY OF THE ELAN-BRM AND THE SPENCE SPECIFICATION CARS

ELAN-BRM by Steve Hole Photos by Carol Hardy

There have been a large number of special variants of the Lotus Elan over the years including the IWR Elan, Willment Elan, Shapecraft Elan, Starley Sprite (the second was Elan-based) and a pre-knighted Sir Stirling Moss’s S.M.A.R.T Elan.

However, my favourite of them all is the Elan-BRM. At first glance, it might appear strange that Lotus and BRM, rivals in F1 back in the day, would collaborate on anything but collaborate they did.

In any case, BRM had already supplied tuned engines for the competition Elan, the 26R and also for Type 47 Europa.

The men More >

GREAT FOR ALCANTARA-TYPE FABRICS

These two products were new to me until recently having been recommended to me by a couple of readers.

One picked up on my comments about the filthy Alcantara steering wheel in the Caterham Seven 420R in the last issue and reckoned this product was a surefire way of bringing it back to health.

While he also praised the Nano Fabric Protector, too and he wondered whether it would help keep Alcantara-type products from getting dirty in the first place. Good shout.

My VW Golf came with seats with Alcantara centre panels and although nice and comfy I know that these suede-style fabrics More >

UNDERPINNINGS – ARCH MOTOR & MANUFACTURING

THEY MAKE STUFF – ARCH MOTOR & MANUFACTURING CO LTD by CAROL HARDY

For over sixty years, Arch Motor has been the go-to company if you want a chassis for your racecar or specialist road car. They have been making Caterham and Lotus Seven chassis for over sixty years and during the sixties every F1 team bar Honda and Ferrari used their services. The great news is, this story isn’t a retrospective per se as Arch Motor still exists and although times have changed greatly, they are still very busy, as STEVE HOLE reports. By the way, I haven’t missed an More >

LENHAM MOTOR COMPANY

LENHAM HEALEY [L25]

Lenham Motor Company was founded by Julian Kingsford-Booty and David Miall-Smith in 1962 (February 9, to be precise!).

Best known for their variety of GRP panels most notably for Sprite and Healey, and motor-racing activities, Lenham also produced the Lenham Healey being one of them.

Came about after a London-based businessman commissioned them to make a pre-war Alfa lookalike basing it on a Triumph TR6. Customers liked the car and it competed at the Brighton Speed Trials in 1977. Motor Sport magazine did a feature on it and other people then wanted one…

The commercial version was reminiscent of the Healey-Silverstone, More >

A VERY SPECIAL ‘SPECIAL’

CAROL HARDY tells the story of the Harold Biggs Special – colour photos by CAROL HARDY

A very warm welcome to CLASIC KIT CARS & SPECIALS online … I have always had a soft spot for ‘specials’ be they beautiful coachbuilt efforts with aluminium bodies on Derby Bentley chassis or lock-up garage-built homebrew. All have an attraction in equal measure for me.

Sadly, there aren’t that many new ones being built these days as I suspect that IVA regulations have put paid to many of them. It took a true, hardcore enthusiast to take on a scratch-built car project. In the depths of Winter, More >

STING IN THE TAIL – TOM KILLEEN’S SCORPION K19

The Scorpion K19 was created by serial specials builder, and ex-Jensen engineer, Tom Killeen and derived (funnily enough) from his Rycam Mirage K18 creation (qv) although it was 3in longer

Rycam Engineering marketed the kit package although in 1973 they went into liquidation. Innes Lee, part of Innes Lee Industries of Lutterworth, took over and launched the car at the Earls Court Motor Show in November of that year where it was part of the Tudor Safety Glass Campaign.

Powered by – and based on – Hillman Imp with the 875cc engine hanging out back, with a fibreglass semi-monocoque and pressed steel floorpan More >

THE STORY OF LYNCAR – INCLUDING WILT ‘THE STILT’ CHAMBERLAIN’S ‘SEARCHER 1’ PROJECT 

Most specialist car enthusiasts of today won’t have heard of a company called Lyncar, as they appeared on our radar for a very brief period nearly 30 years ago, but as STEVE HOLE reports there was quite a story behind the business.

Lyncar Engineering was based in Slough, Berkshire and run by a very clever engineer called Martin Slater, born in Windsor in 1936. Back in the Sixties, the motorsport enthusiast had built – and raced – his own Formula Junior and F3 cars.

Lyncar was debuted in kit form at the 1992 National Kit Car Motor Show

Slater’s first car build, the More >