Hey gang. 'Sup? Hope all of you are enjoying this Winter. Sometimes I forget how fortunate I am to live in the Central Valley of Northern California where it stays relatively warm during the Winter months. I say relatively because I've been following the news and some of those on the East Coast are enduring some brutally cold weather. My best thoughts go out to those of you who are effected by the cruelties of Mother Nature. Any hoo, since the last post regarding my opinion on revisionist history was challenged by some of my readers, this post focuses on something that's not debatable: The fact that all four of the main cars that were featured in the film, American Graffiti were built to period specs. And, we've got the evidence to prove it: The J.C. Whitney Auto Parts Catalog.
By guest contributor, Charlie Lecach
Now about John Milner’s hot rod: let’s forget his alternator for a minute and look for a pair of finned “no name” valve covers. You could get them on page 75 for about $ 33. His front wheel hot rod fenders were available on page 97 in different shapes and sizes. The piston gearshift knob was sold for $ 1.75 and was installed with a plastic bushing and a set screw. In other words, it was probably quite easy to pull it off the shift lever to give it as a gift to young Carol! Even the Man-A-Fre 4 carb. manifold, which was advertised in Hot Rod Magazine in February ’61. The “professional type racing air cleaner stacks” were already a classic from J.C. Whitney and could easily be attached to Milner’s Rochester carburetors.
Let’s face it, while he was buying or modifying the movie cars, transportation manager Henry Travers probably didn’t check out the period accuracy of each listed part installed. Nevertheless, he did a great job and this transportation manager really transported each one of us into the early sixties!
|The '32 Ford coupe's engine (probably a 283) was equipped with finned valve covers which were readily available for many engine sizes in the JC Whitney catalog|