Jack Chrisman's stylish Chrisman Model A Sedan was a formidable competitor in the early days of drag racing. At one of its best performances of 1954, the car left the starting line at the Santa Ana dragstrip with tires smoking.
Prior to receiving the Hemi, Jack's 1929 saw daily service with a stout Ford flathead V-8. On weekends, he removed the jets from the four Stromberg 97 carburetors (thus increasing flow), filled the fuel tank with a mixture of nitromethane and alcohol, and ran as fast as 117 mph in the quarter mile.
After Jack installed the Chrysler engine and a LaSalle transmission, the miles per hour jumped to 129. The stronger engine and gearbox led to a consistency that allowed driver Art Chrisman, Jack's nephew, to dust all comers in the A/Fuel Coupe and Sedan class in 1954.
Early drag cars became obsolete all too soon. When smaller coupes with similar powerplants came along, their performance spelled the end of drag racing success for the Chrisman sedan.
Jack sold the car in 1958 to move up to dragsters, where the team would find more success. The Chrisman team won the NHRA World Championship in 1961.
Almost 50 years later, the Chrisman sedan returned to the Chrisman family. Jack's son Steve bought it and had Jim Travis restore it.
Art Chrisman again built the powertrain, now with a Turbo 400 transmission, and a 392-cid Hemi with 354 heads and dual quads.
Artist Dennis Jones reproduced the Von Dutch grille-shell insert working from photos. Beautifully restored, the 1929 Model A has come full circle.
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