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PostPosted: Thu Oct 22, 2015 1:25 pm 
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Location: Cupertino, California
If you were at Rennsport you must have seen the Gmünd 356 SL Chassis No.: 356/2-063 that was on display along with the other LeMans winners. I thought I would fill in more of the story for those of you that don't know the car. This is the ex Chuck Forge/von Neumann roadster that Chuck ran at the Historics from 1982. Not only was this car the 1100cc class winner at LeMans in 1951 (Porsche's first victory at LeMans, and the first German car to participate after WWII) but it then went on to an illustrious race history here in the U.S. chalking up many wins. In early 1952 von Neumann had the roof removed creating a lightweight highly competitive roadster.The story goes that Max Hoffman hand carried photos of the car to Ferry Porsche to use as an example of what a lightweight entry level Porsche could look like. Hoffman knew that such a car would sell well in the U.S. and was pressing the factory hard to build one. The result two years later was the Speedster.

After Chuck's passing his estate contracted Clark Anderson and myself to help market and sell all of the cars and parts. The Gmünd was the star of the collection. After extensive research by Clark and myself a 23 page report documenting its history was completed. I will post a PDF copy for you to read.

All prospective buyers were given copies of this report that confirmed that this car was in fact the 1100cc class winner at LeMans as well as documenting all of it's history from the day it was built to the day Chuck passed away.

Knowing they had purchased the LeMans winner, current owner Cameron Healy and project manager Rod Emory decided to return the car to it's LeMans specification which meant putting the roof back on. This is how the car was presented at this years Rennsport. The work done to date is quite remarkable.

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PostPosted: Thu Oct 22, 2015 1:42 pm 
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Here is the link to the PDF of the research document created by Clark and myself

http://www.autograph.net/356SL.pdf

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PostPosted: Thu Oct 22, 2015 2:48 pm 
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Llew,
Quite a story. Thanks for sharing all the details
Regards
Peter

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PostPosted: Thu Oct 22, 2015 2:55 pm 
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Thanks for documenting this history for us, Lew.

Cheers,
Wes

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PostPosted: Thu Oct 22, 2015 5:57 pm 
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Thanks for sharing Llew. Fantastic history, and fantastic job researching it!


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PostPosted: Thu Oct 22, 2015 6:31 pm 
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My pleasure guys. Chuck was a great friend and it was really a team effort when he restored the car back in the 80's. Once done I just happened to be in the right place at the right time when he tossed me the keys and said take it around the block. What a thrill that was!

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PostPosted: Thu Oct 22, 2015 10:25 pm 
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fantastic read, huge thanks for sharing this!

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PostPosted: Fri Oct 23, 2015 8:18 am 
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I enjoyed the article. Thanks for posting.


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PostPosted: Fri Oct 23, 2015 9:08 am 
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Llew; great stuff.
I do have to check some chassis number details in my records. I think 2-054 and 2-055 have their histories crossed.

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PostPosted: Fri Oct 23, 2015 1:40 pm 
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Would be interested to see the histories as you have them Vic. Many more photos of these cars have surfaced over the years, and the small detail differences between them might make it easier to sort out.


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PostPosted: Fri Oct 23, 2015 3:01 pm 
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Hi Vic
Thanks for the heads up, I was not as focused on those two as I was on the Forge car so I could have gotten my wires crossed

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PostPosted: Fri Oct 23, 2015 4:52 pm 
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I've 2 questions:

1) do you have a real proof that 063 had number "46" for Le Mans 1951?

2) on the following photo, can you tell me which car has the third shaft for the third wiper ( on the top oh the windshield)?

I met M. Forge in 2009 at Laguna Seca and we ha a too short discussion about his car!


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PostPosted: Fri Oct 23, 2015 5:31 pm 
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Olivier, both #46 and #47 had shafts for 3rd wipers at Le Mans in 1951. In this photo, you can see clearly the shaft, and also you can see clearly Llew's remarks about how poorly the front windshield rubber fits on this car.

Unfortunately, that ill-fitting rubber on the windshield is the best evidence that links the 1951 Le Mans #46 car to the 1100cc car at Liège-Rome-Liège 1951, and from then on, it is very easy to track based on the front blinker position.


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PostPosted: Fri Oct 23, 2015 6:18 pm 
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Ok, I'll check asap the photo taken in Téloché (the workshop used by Porsche near Le Mans).

The third wiper was not a standard equipment for "sl" . For me, only one car has it on the photo taken in Téloché (before the race) and something is wrong because it's number 47!

Now, if you're looking for photos from 1952, one more time only one car has the third wiper: Toto's car (Toto was the nickname of M. Veuillet)



....A Swabish doesn't like customs taxes........


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PostPosted: Fri Oct 23, 2015 6:35 pm 
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Olivier AUVRAY wrote:
Ok, I'll check asap the photo taken in Téloché (the workshop used by Porsche near Le Mans).

The third wiper was not a standard equipment for "sl" . For me, only one car has it on the photo taken in Téloché (before the race) and something is wrong because it's number 47!

Now, if you're looking for photos from 1952, one more time only one car has the third wiper: Toto's car (Toto was the nickname of M. Veuillet)



....A Swabish doesn't like customs taxes........


Sorry..... I'm wrong.... I've photos from 1952 with and without third wiper for numbers 47-50 & 51.


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