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ELVA MK 2 / 3 100/49 Bill Hinshaw's comments 
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Joined: Sun Mar 14, 2010 4:53 pm
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Post ELVA MK 2 / 3 100/49 Bill Hinshaw's comments
From Bill Hinshaw Jan 2013
First, I think the chassis # 100/49 was on a serial plate mounted to the firewall. However, I once looked into the Elva Owners' website and it was shown as having been once mine but listed as a Mk2. According to Rod Carveth (deceased some 10 years now but once the Elva distributor for this area and a friend of Carl Haas in Chicago, the U.S. importer) the factory did not receive new Mk3 ID plates in time to put them on the cars and so used surplus Mk 2 plates instead with the new Mk3 numbers stamped in.

The first owner, I believe, was a San Francisco social worker named Dan Abbott, who ran the car very unsuccessfully in 1960. Not the car's fault, either, but Dan did his best to stay out of the way, at least. He sold it to Bob Potter, an SCCA driver and used car trader in Oakland. I found it sitting on a trailer at the back of Bob's lot and traded a salvaged Morgan +4 for it. My first run with it was on Sunday at the Stockton event in early '61, my Porsche entry having expired in the Ladies' Race on Saturday. I had done no prep work at all on the Elva and subsequently found that it overheated quickly and so I retired it.

It wasn't until later in "61 that I got a chance to work on the engine, and found on removal of the cyl. head that two of the liners had sunk into the block. Since I had already entered the car for a race at Cotati I took a shortcut "Joe McGee" fix and cut shims from old coffee can lids and stuck them to the tops of the sunken liners with aluminum spray paint and then laid a head gasket on top of that. Amazingly the car seemed to run quite well as we did tests up & down the alley behind Rod Carveth's shop.

Saturday at Cotati came and the car proved a reasonable contender to season's points-leader John Miller in his Lotus Eleven but the clutch was failing fast. That night a shop owner in Santa Rosa made his place available and a group of friends & I installed a new clutch - an MGTD or A, I think - and on Sunday we had a new winner. Miller and I were both equally amazed. Shortly thereafter the Elva Mk6 was announced and I ordered one through Carveth. By December the Mk3 was sold to a guy from Salt Lake City. I should have kept it.
Bill Hinshaw

Mon Feb 18, 2013 11:45 pm

Joined: Wed Feb 03, 2010 7:52 am
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Post Re: ELVA MK 2 / 3 100/49 Bill Hinshaw's comments
Very interesting comments from Bill. Thank you Sir.
We have to remember that chassis numbers were not of particular interest to the manufacturer or customer at the time, it was the "authorities" who wanted to keep track of the cars built for tax and perhaps duty purposes. To my knowledge, the "free issue" chassis plates supplied by Castrol were first fitted to the Mk.III whereas the small stamped aluminium "strip" was the ID method used on the earlier cars. I can certainly believe the story of the ID plates being shipped after the cars were dispatched as all the cars were built on an 'as needed' basis; relying on component availability, week by week design changes and the demands (requests) of individual customers or dealerships. There was also the issue of costs; the 15" mag Elva wheels were used long after many other manufactures had changed to 13" diam; FGN was aware of the pile of expensive 15"castings; and even a box of "Hastings" chassis plates being used up on the McLaren-Elva series despite the cars being built several years later at Rye and then Croydon. We would now expect a nice new design of ID plate proudly showing precise details of the manufacturer and vehicle; but these are different times. In the 1950's and 60's "the cars just happened".

Thu Feb 21, 2013 7:52 pm

Joined: Tue Sep 18, 2012 4:36 pm
Posts: 18
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Post Re: ELVA MK 2 / 3 100/49 Bill Hinshaw's comments
Mr. Hinshaw,

Thanks for taking the time to list your ownership and history of 100/49. In some of the history I was able to find it is listed as a MkIII. What was your understanding was it a MkII or III? I think the person you mentioned from Salt Lake City was Sid Horman. I saw 100/49, which is now owned by Tom Jones in KY. When I saw this car at Road America at the 55th Elva Reunion it had most of the MkIII characteristics (flat cowl, set back climax engine, shorter, orignal head rest, front brake air intake). It currently has stamped steel front Triumph A-Arms, which were usually associated with MkIIs. The unique roll bar aft support, which appears to been done in the 60s makes it an easy car to identify through the years.

Any comments are appreciated.

Stan Mason
Ecurie Elva
100/65 Elva MkIII Elva Sports Racer

Fri Sep 27, 2013 1:19 pm
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