Author Topic: Bill Thomas /race cars  (Read 8963 times)

Jon Mello

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Bill Thomas /race cars
« on: November 22, 2014, 05:32:09 PM »
Bill Thomas Race Cars catalog, believed to be from 1965. Lots of neat stuff contained within. (Jon Mello Collection)



























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Jon Mello

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Re: Bill Thomas /race cars
« Reply #1 on: November 22, 2014, 05:37:17 PM »






















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Jon Mello

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Re: Bill Thomas /race cars
« Reply #2 on: November 22, 2014, 05:41:29 PM »
























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janobyte

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Re: Bill Thomas /race cars
« Reply #3 on: November 22, 2014, 10:41:57 PM »
Always something interesting. I love these old ads. How some of the innovation forged ahead, and some passed.

I've never seen it mentioned on this site or anything remotely recent pertaining to the Camaro's history. Years ago I read an article stating much of the Camaro's lines were "borrowed" from the Corvair. I was probably in high school at the time, and have no recollection of the reference. ???
68 Z/28  born with: 302, drive line, etc..

PURESS

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Re: Bill Thomas /race cars
« Reply #4 on: November 23, 2014, 12:13:32 AM »
as a little tyke...Cheetah was my car on our HO slot car track...https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4zKV2H5epNE        not a very good you tube  but our track was about the same size and the car was the same color   memories... precious

MO

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Re: Bill Thomas /race cars
« Reply #5 on: November 23, 2014, 03:43:35 AM »
Excellent post Jon!

69Z28-RS

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Re: Bill Thomas /race cars
« Reply #6 on: November 23, 2014, 04:50:33 AM »
Always something interesting. I love these old ads. How some of the innovation forged ahead, and some passed.

I've never seen it mentioned on this site or anything remotely recent pertaining to the Camaro's history. Years ago I read an article stating much of the Camaro's

Just look at the '65 and later Corvair side by side with the first gen Camaro...  the similarity in 'body lines' is obvious...  I think initially, Chevrolet wanted the Corvair to be their 'pony car' entry, but Nadar-crap pooped in that cereal.   
Gary W / 09C 69Z28-RS, 72 B 720 cowl console rosewood tint
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Jon Mello

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Re: Bill Thomas /race cars
« Reply #7 on: November 23, 2014, 09:44:27 PM »
as a little tyke...Cheetah was my car on our HO slot car track...https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4zKV2H5epNE        not a very good you tube  but our track was about the same size and the car was the same color   memories... precious

     I had an HO scale Cheetah slot car as a kid too. Certainly one of my favorite cars at a young age and I still think they are pretty awesome.
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Jon Mello

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Re: Bill Thomas /race cars
« Reply #8 on: November 23, 2014, 09:48:17 PM »
November 1963 Car & Driver article I posted previously but worth putting into a devoted Bill Thomas thread. My folks had
a '63 Corvair when I was a kid, but unfortunately Bill Thomas had not worked his magic on it.  (Jon Mello Collection)





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group/7

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Re: Bill Thomas /race cars
« Reply #9 on: November 23, 2014, 10:50:17 PM »
Jon, you always come up with the coolest stuff ! there was also "Bad Bascom" a Chevy 11 with Corvette engine & rear suspension. that was quite neat. Thomas also built some Fastback Novas for drag racing. he really was quite prolific, in many fields.

Mike...group/7 in canada

Jon Mello

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Re: Bill Thomas /race cars
« Reply #10 on: November 23, 2014, 11:25:02 PM »
Thanks, Mike.

Bad Bascom was a really neat car. A fuel-injected 327 Corvette engine and independent rear suspension in a Chevy II road racer.
Here's a short article on it from the same issue of Car & Driver magazine.  412 horsepower and 2130 lbs. How much fun could
you have with that?  ;D    (Jon Mello Collection)



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Re: Bill Thomas /race cars
« Reply #11 on: November 24, 2014, 04:08:19 PM »
Original Bill Thomas waterslide decals.

1966 and earlier style


1967 and later style
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crazyamc

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Re: Bill Thomas /race cars
« Reply #12 on: November 24, 2014, 06:19:33 PM »
Very cool!! - Does anybody have a set of the Mickey Thompsen rockers, aluminum or magnesium, ?   Ever seen a set?   The AMC Group 19 catalogue lists with a picture those rockers with no reference as to who might have supplied them.  Kaplan and M/T were both old salt and Indy rats....  Any pics of real ones?  Thanks!  Ken

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Re: Bill Thomas /race cars
« Reply #13 on: November 24, 2014, 07:52:51 PM »
Here's a set of what I assume are Bill Thomas magnesium rocker arms. They've been for sale on ebay for at least a couple of months.

http://www.ebay.com/itm/VINTAGE-MAGNESIUM-THOMAS-ROCKER-ARMS-SBC-HOT-ROD-CUSTOM-GASSER-NOSTALGIA-RACING-/310949930910?pt=Vintage_Car_Truck_Parts_Accessories&hash=item48660f679e&vxp=mtr

I've seen M/T rocker arms but it has been quite some time since I last did.
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crazyamc

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Re: Bill Thomas /race cars
« Reply #14 on: November 24, 2014, 08:34:30 PM »
again, VERY COOL!!  The M/T's in the ad are stud mount though......  I might be trying the Thomas ones for my Camaro if I was keeping it.... :)    Happy Thanksgiving everybody!    Ken

Jon Mello

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Re: Bill Thomas /race cars
« Reply #15 on: November 25, 2014, 03:52:05 AM »
Looks like somebody bought the rockers and all the other pics have been taken down from the ad.
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Re: Bill Thomas /race cars
« Reply #16 on: November 26, 2014, 03:00:27 AM »
Bill Thomas had some involvement with Andy Porterfield's '68 Z/28 Trans-Am car, building the
race engine, providing the headers and exhaust, and contributing to the chassis set-up.




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Jon Mello

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Re: Bill Thomas /race cars
« Reply #17 on: November 26, 2014, 03:12:44 AM »
It is believed that the decal shown below is the style used in two places on the front fender of Porterfield's orange Camaro.


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Jon Mello

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Re: Bill Thomas /race cars
« Reply #18 on: November 28, 2014, 04:58:56 AM »
The February 18, 1967 issue of Competition Press & Autoweek reported that Bill Thomas would be involved in heading up
the Nickey Chevrolet Trans-Am effort but this was a short lived endeavor. 1967 was an off year for car sales in general and
Nickey decided to conserve their resources shortly after this. I talked to George Follmer about this recently and he told me
that he was good friends with Bill Thomas and does not recall ever being asked to drive a Camaro for him.


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satman

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Re: Bill Thomas /race cars
« Reply #19 on: November 28, 2014, 10:20:09 PM »

Neat stuff Jon............
Back in 1968 I was in LA building engines for some  Australia racers I used to buy a lot of my parts from Bill Thomas and in those days it was a real happening place Their primary focus on drag racing and Corvairs with a small bit of road racing thrown in. I think they were mainly brokers with most of the good stuff coming from Traco and other local suppliers.

AL

Jon Mello

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Re: Bill Thomas /race cars
« Reply #20 on: November 29, 2014, 08:38:51 PM »
Thanks, Al. Yes, BTRC sold a lot of performance parts, often from other suppliers but they would also build and modify cars for people there in their shop. By 1971 though it was all over.
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