Friday, September 5, 2014

G is for Gasser

We at Ol Skool Rodz Magazine appreciate the gasser style of hot rod and you will find our pedal car tribute to these awesome race cars in our Koolhouse booth at So Cal shows. Stop on by, take a closer look and get a discounted subscription rate on our magazine title at the same time.

Gasser History

A gasser was a type of hot rod originating on the dragstrips of the United States in the late 1950s and continued until the early 1970s. Gassers were based on production models from the 1930s to mid-1960s, which are stripped of extra weight and jacked up using a truck beam axle to provide better weight distribution on acceleration (beam axles are also lighter than an independent front suspension), although a raised stock front suspension is common as well (called a nosebleed stance). Common weight reduction techniques include fiberglass body panels, stripped interiors and plexiglass windows (sometimes color tinted).

Because gassers were primarily built for racing, cars typically had the engine swapped to a larger or more powerful one, or the existing stock engine modified (often heavily). Its very common to fit a supercharger and mechanical fuel injection such as one from Algon, Hilborn, or Crower.

With form being dictated by function, their appearance is often top heavy and ungainly, due to front ends being raised higher than stock specs, which assist in the weight transfer during rapid acceleration (racing). Having exhaust pipes exit through the front fender well is a common characteristic as is having bodies painted in flamboyant metalflake, pearl, and candy finishes complemented by lettering in wild fonts.

The name arose because these cars competed in a gasoline fueled drag race class, rather than one using methanol or nitroomethane. The gasser is the predecessor of the modern Funny Car and are experiencing a popular resurgence in nostalgia car clubs and car events such as the Eagle Field Drags, Mooneyes Xmas, Dragfest and the Meltdown Drags. Ed Big Daddy Roth created Weirdo decals in the Sixties depicting monsters driving gassers that are also very collectible. ZOOM.

1 comment: