ORIGINAL DOOLING BROS. TETHER CAR

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  • Item Category: Toys, Dolls, Games & Puzzles
  • Source: eBay
  • Sold Date: Jun 05,2011
  • Channel: Online Auction
Car has no engine and one wheel is cracked and the front axel has been replaced in the past. Also the rear box has dried up grease making the wheels tough to turn. However I believe the gunk can be cleaned up. Car can be used for parts or restoration project. Anyone interested in miniature gas- powered race cars is familiar with the name. Possibly the most famous and successful of all model race car manufacturers, the Dooling brothers not only mass-produced seven different race cars of their own design, (I do not know what model)but also developed and marketed one of the finest high-performance miniature racing engines: the Dooling .61.

Tom, Russell, and Harris Dooling began building racers in 1937 for their own pleasure. These early crude, buggy-type creations, powered by model airplane motors, nurtured what would become a thriving business beginning in 1939.

The Doolings' first car, the Mercury Midget, also known as the First Series Front Drive, was produced in 1939. As the nickname implies, the car was a front drive model with cast aluminum frame, grill, and axles. The body was formed of sheet stock with a wood center-section running the length of the tail. The car was over nineteen inches long. This car had the distinction of being the first of the trio of Mercury series cars.

The second car, the Mercury Deluxe, more commonly known as the Rear Drive, was produced in late 1939. A favorite of collectors, this car had a two-piece cast aluminum body, grille, and frame. Hood and belly pan were formed of sheet aluminum. Four coil springs mounted on each corner of the frame provided suspension. True to its nickname, the car was rear-driven with bevel gears in a cast aluminum housing. On the gear-case cover was embossed "Dooling Bros, Mercury, Los Angeles." T he car measured eighteen inches long.

The last of the Mercury series of cars was produced in the fall of 1940 and was known as the Front Drive, or Second Series Front drive to collectors. The body was a one piece aluminum casting with a separate enclosed cast motor mount/drive unit. Underneath, a shallow, gently curved sheet aluminum belly pan covered the internal workings. The hood was also formed of sheet aluminum.

Dooling introduced the Streamliner in 1939. Because of the car's overall appearance and squat stature, it was affectionately nicknamed the "Frog" by enthusiasts. The car was driven by a horizontally mounted engine with spur gears. The entire motor mount assembly, including the drive-axle, could be lifted out of the car by removing just four screws located beneath the belly pan. The cast aluminum body separated to reveal a two-piece front axle. By virtue of a torsion bar system, each spring-loaded front wheel assembly could be adjusted for ride height and varying track conditions. Both axles were locked down by hexagon nuts after adjustment.

In late 1940 the Dooling brothers produced the Pee Wee, a twelve inch long racer designed for the medium class (cars with engine sizes .36 to .45 cubic inches). With a polished, two-piece cast aluminum body and direct drive off the engine crankshaft to the left-rear wheel, the Pee Wee was potent and simple. Advertisements of the era proclaimed that these cars, with Bunch engines, could run seventy-plus miles per hour. A little cousin to the Second Series Front Drive.

After the war, in April 1946, the Dooling brothers produced the "F" car. Probably the easiest Dooling car to find, the "F" car is sixteen inches long with a two-piece die-cast magnesium body. Once again bevel gears were used to drive the rear axle. A separate, stamped aluminum Kurtis midget-type grille was riveted to the body top. Front axles were of two-piece cast aluminum knee- action design, supported by a bracket bolted to the belly pan. Rubber grommets surrounding the axles provided more support at the body openings. Cars from the factory came painted in many combinations of colors. Optional tires and a front axle could be had for rail racing.

The last of the mass-produced Do...

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