Front and Rear Styling For The Fiberglass Body (Car Craft, March 1956)

Hi Gang…

So many questions to answer….

  • What fiberglass sports car bodies were being offered in 1956?
  • Was the Glasspar G2 still available?
  • When did the Woodill Wildfire hardtop coupe hit the market?
  • What is the Sorrell SR-190 Coupe?
  • Can I buy and build a Victress S4?

All of these are questions you might have had back in 1956 if you were considering building your own sports car with a fiberglass body.  But you couldn’t buy Harold Pace’s “Big Guide to Kit and Specialty Cars” back then.  There wasn’t a Kit Car Magazine to focus your attention on.

What would a car guy do???

Well…. you had to peruse American automobile enthusiast magazines and hope to find a comprehensive article on kit cars.  And…since so few of these were published back then, the next best approach was to buy magazines and look for articles and ads about fiberglass bodies.

Luckily for us, a few comprehensive fiberglass sports car articles were published back in the day and Car Craft Magazine may have published one of the best in March 1956.  In fact in this issue, Car Craft published two separate articles, and we’ll look at each in depth.  For today, let’s focus on their first article about “Fiberglass Styling”.

Car Craft: March 1956

Commercial Fiberglass Bodies
By Jim Potter
Photos by Jim Potter, Bob D’Olivo, and Eric Rickman

“Since fiberglass bodies have played an important role in the last few issues of Car Craft, we feel that a “Grab Bag” feature in their honor would be right in line.

Specially built fiberglass bodies are no different in requirements than those of our stock production class.  The specially designed glass body requires a grille, headlights, taillights, and if desired, bumpers.  The details of these components must be planned out in the same manner as you would if you contemplated restyling or customizing your present stock automobile.

Many backyard builders striving to keep their cars as original as possible in appearance create and build their own special grille pieces, bumpers, and other exterior bolt on items.  Others though rely on what they can utilize from the stock production car, similar to the custom car enthusiast.

Both plans have good merit and to prove it, here are sixteen illustrative examples of front and rear styling treatments.”

Close-Ups of Each of the Sixteen Examples:

I thought it would be best to include close-up scans of each of the 16 pictures and show their captions too.  So…to make this point even more dramatic, I’ve included each of the 16 below – shown full size in today’s “Forgotten Fiberglass” article.

Spend some time reviewing each gang and pretend you’re back in 1956 and just one paycheck away from purchasing your first fiberglass sports car body.

Consider the following…

  • Which do you like?
  • Which would you consider purchasing?
  • Do you want a coupe?  A removable hardtop?
  • So much to consider….you’ll probably want to buy one now 🙂

Too much fun for just one person to have!  So here we go gang……. close-up scans of all sixteen pictures in a row:

Summary:

Hope you enjoyed the story, and until next time…

Glass on gang…

Geoff

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Click on the Images Below to View Larger Pictures

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