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1927 Whippet Roadster

When these images were first taken the owner was Currently  detailing out a new motor for the Whippet.


 The owner, building  a new motor for this terrific little car over the last few years to replace the original one that was badly fatigue with a  crack in the block.

 It is now running very well, with a little fine tuning left to complete. Some cosmetic work remains, then the owner will be happy will be happy.

As part of the collection of spare parts his  father sold to him with the roadster some years previous, he  received a 1926 Whippet Touring chassis in basket case status.

Research of the serial numbers on the frame and engine block showed this car to have been an early Whippet. He  currently have plans to restore this with a touring body as they are pretty rare here in the U.S. This car is based in Ohio USA –  at the time  these pictures were taken .



John N. Willys Company – Willys Overland – was one of the largest manufacturers of automobiles in the United States in the early part of the twentieth century, producing the Willys Knight, The Americar and the Whippet. The company reached peak production in the mid 1920’s.

I photographed this car at the OZ 2000 Rally in Brisbane. Owned by 'Robert'

A ‘ground up’ restoration in 1971 included Robert rebuilding a few panels, the mechanical’s were in good condition. Robert mentioned replacing a selection of brake parts but I suspect if he were to write out a list it would be as long as my arm.

It was painted in Roberts back yard and the hood was made out of BMW fabric by a 23 year old fellow who was taught his trade by his grandfather. The original hood bows were retained.  Robert is ‘on the net’ so I am hoping to update this page soon and include an Email address.

The Whippet 96 Roadster was produced from 1926 to 1928 and was advertised as “The Car of Youth”, specifically designed and priced to appeal to the younger set

. Smartly styled, the 1926 Whippet roadster was a two-seater with a rear “rumble seat” that could comfortably accommodate two more passengers.

A four cylinder model capable of reaching 55 miles per hour, the Whippet 96 roadster was first introduced to the public in June of 1926. The car had innovative technical features for the time such as four wheel brakes, water pump cooling and pressurized lubrication, a roomy yet compact body, low center of gravity and economy of operation.

The car achieved immediate popularity and the export market was quickly probed with Australia a prime target. The Roadster, which sold for up to $525 US was marketed in England for $240 UK and $199 Australian. The deluxe model was for export only and sold for $250 UK and $220 Australian.

Strangely enough, the 1926 model, though advertised as a Whippet and stated as such in the car’s manual, did not have the Whippet name on the vehicle itself. The hub caps and radiator were marked “Overland”. This was changed in the 1927 model when the new six cylinder automobile was introduced as the Whippet 93A.

The last of the Whippet 96 models were produced in 1928 with final production ending in December of that year.

According to Robert the whippet does not like to start, but it unstoppable once it does'. The car is running on a 12 volt system and is going to be changrd to 12 volts. So hopefully it should start well soon,


The Gladstone Vintage and Classic Car Club

Photo Below  (right)

A Sleeve Valve Diagram from an earlier web page

Restoring The Falcon Knight
 (The Seven Year Battle)
Owned by John and Mary Anne Smith
While on holidays at Killkoy John saw an advert in a paper for the Falcon, The Sleeve Valve Motor interested him. Mary Anne was a little confused about the logic of spending money on a car that did not go. But she had always loved old cars so she figured it would no hurt to ‘look’. So it was arranged that the car be brought up from Kilkoy on a trailer, and the Smiths towed it back to Gladstone. Mary Anne had a whimsical vision of the car being ‘done up a bit’ so that it could be driven and was not encouraged when the tray disappeared, and the car began to totally disassemble into a heap of pieces on the floor of the garage. Hours and days, weeks, months, and a year passed, scrubbing cleaning, removing rust, sandblasting. Mary Anne estimated it would be ready for Easter

What exactly is a sleeve valve engine anyway, you may ask.
To begin with, we recommend you forget about valves as there aren’t any. At least not in the sense of the familiar mushroom or “Poppet” type valves we have on most modern engines.  Pistons, yes. The regular type, operating from a crankshaft and connecting rods the same as a conventional internal combustion gasoline engine.

But then, inside the cylinder, between the piston and the cylinder wall, you have two perfectly machined and well fitting sleeves, one inside the other in a precision fit sliding up and down.

These sleeves are powered, by a another little crank-or-cam-shaft, with short connecting rods, one for each sleeve, to push them up and down. Cut into the sides of the sleeves are port holes, or slots, in such a manner that the sleeves slide up and down. The ports, match ports in the intake and exhaust manifolds in proper timing to act as valves. One side acting as the exhaust and the other as the inlet valve.

Another Easter, then Another Easter. There is a lot of work restoring a car.
Having started out with an almost complete car the only parts made by John were the running boards, the valance panels, the front apron, the back of the front seat, a new dash, the shell of two back doors, and some mudguard repairs. Then all the woodwork was replaced, and a new fuel tank was made. Every last nut and bolt was pulled apart.

Mary Anne says for years nothing seemed to happen. There seemed to be a garage full of parts that moved around, got painted, then suddenly, she noticed that the engine had found its way back into the chassis..

 At this point John hit a stumbling block. . . He had the chassis, running boards, radiator, mudguards and bonnet, but could not find a TUB. . . Along the grapevine John and Mary Anne heard there was a Falcon Knight out at Aramac that would not take much to get on the road, YES it had a tub. 

They left at 2am in the morning and headed for Aramac dragging the trailer. But they came home empty handed, the fellow would not sell them any of the usable pieces. It was certainly not in a shed, and was in ten times worse condition than the one they had.

Christmas 88, They found a tub that could be modified to fit some mudguards that were found near Bundaburg. Mary Anne reckons it was a lot easier than watching John trying to create a compound curve in a piece of metal.
It still took two years of work to repair, construct the timber and fit all the panels together. It had seats made and upholstered, (thanks to Bill Turner) doors repaired, Wiring done, and registered.
The hood came later. Dec 1998