Today’s car is a 1932 Ford Roadster that was owned by Ray Brown from 1945 – 1948. Ray built the car while working for the famed Eddie Meyer Speed Equipment in West Hollywood, CA. Ray raced it on El Mirage Dry Lake, from 1946 and 1947, collecting 11 timing tags with the Southern California Timing Association Inc. (SCTA) with this roadster known as 99C running at 123.62 mph on alcohol. A very impressive showing for his daily driver as well as his weekend race car built by a teenager.
I photographed this car at the Petersen Automotive Museum that had an event that was “Celebrating 100 Years of Hollywood”. The car is finished in Sherwood Green, a 1946 Buick color with a dark saddle interior. It is powered by a 288 cu in Ford 59 AB flathead engine, with twin 2bbl Stromberg 97 carburetors sitting on top of a Eddie Meyer aluminum intake manifold and accompanied with a set of Eddie Meyer finned aluminum heads. It is mated to a 3-speed manual 3 on a tree transmission with a Halibrand quick-change rear end. Slowing this beauty down are hydraulic drum brakes in all 4-corners. The front suspension is a solid dropped front axle with a single transverse semi-elliptical leaf spring and dual action shock absorbers. The rear suspension has a single transverse semi-elliptical leaf spring, dual action shock absorbers.
In 1948, Ray sold the car and from 1949 through 1991, it changed hands a couple of times, but was kept in dry storage. stolen by a group of teenagers, had a few modifications and saw little use. In 1991 the roadster was discovered near Las Vegas in the hands of Bob Stamper bought by Kirk White for the sum of $28,000.00. Kirk was in contact with Ray Brown and Ray was thrilled that he found his 32 Roadster and planned on a complete restoration. Ray had compiled and retained, an extensive file, including all manner of photographs of the car that he shared with Kirk. Following a ground-up restoration, by Jim Lowrey, in Chelmsford, MA. The Hi-Boy has returned to its original racing configuration. It has won AACA Junior and Senior awards, and was the recipient of the 1994 AACA ‘Past President’s Award’ – the highest honor a competition car can receive. The car change hands again and is now it the rightful hands of the Petersen Automotive Museum with their amazing collection of famous deuces.
This is an amazing award winning car, with Ray Brown and its historical race history just takes it over the top for me. Standing in an outstanding group of 90 years of Deuces at the Petersen. It stands with the “Bob McGee Roadster”, the “Doane Spencer Roadster” and the the “Ricky Nelson Roadster,” “Andy Kassa Three-Window Coupe”, and my friends “The Doyle Gammel Coupe” that represents the enduring street style and is considered by many to demonstrate the ideal top chop proportions. Thank you for riding along. Frank