Gary Plagman's "Exponent"

Class3Fan

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Gary Plagman's original mount ... the Horse With No Name ... after breaking down at a race in Colorado. Photo courtesy Gary Plagman.
 

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E Gud

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I think Gary said it was gone.
 

Gary Plagman

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X - R-facing.jpg


Built in 1977 for Custom Class 2 Off Road Race Car “Ford Exponent”
Races / Colorado west 200 / Mint 400 / Pike Peak Meadows
Vehicle construction Aluminum body panels form the interior body shell of the tube frame with aluminum body. Front and rear with a tubular push-bars.

The front end is a Twin-I-Beam front suspension, from F100 production pickup front end.
The front end is directed with the help of a Saginaw power steering box 3 turns left to right lock to lock of the steering wheel.
The rear suspension is a four drag-line design with a transverse.
Each link has aircraft bushings at each end. The rear axle is a full-floating 9" design, with 4.11 gears and a prostration locker differential.
The chassis is suspended by a coil spring at each corner with 10 Bilstein shock absorber 3 located each side in the front and 2 on each side rear suspension.
Stewart Warner gauges and dust covered electrical switches.
Mid engine Powered by Ford 351 Windsor -V8 with Holley 4B Filtration is handled by 2 Autolite oil filters.
Fuel containment 22-gallon fuel cell.
B&M C4- automatic transmission with 3 oil transmission coolers.
Tires Firestone Parnelli 1000,
Off-road Cibie lights 2 front body , and 4 mount on upper wing.
Exponent dimensions Outside Width 80” tire to tire Body Width is 80 ¾”
Wheel center is 96” Body length 153” front push rail to rear push-bar
Height from floor to top wing 75 ½” With Lights on wing 82”
 

conejoracer

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Even the paint jobs were better back then, even with 'wraps' today.

I agree. Our co driver did the pin stripping on our class 3 by hand. Owner/driver Mike Schwellinger made sure everything was in top shape for every race, including the paint.
He was a former commercial airline mechanic and pilot for United Airlines, and his attention to detail was incredible.
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conejoracer

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You can appreciate this then-

That's a great pic. I can see that it was taken after Mike sold the Jeep. We kept the lower windshield deflector that had Conejo Off Road Racing on it, and we never ran a 700 number either.
I found the Jeep for sale in 2009 in Phoenix. I just missed out on the purchase, Greg Adler beat me to it. Here is a pic of it in our old shop (now a 4wpw) in November of 2009 after Greg bought it.
It was amazingly well preserved.
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Bro_Gill

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That's from the 1993 Fud Buzz Bomb race. Fud let the 6 cylinder class 3s and 4s race in 'Little Truck' class. That's whay the 700 number is on it.
 

Chubs

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Nobody is bringing up SO MANY things! It looks like a 2wd 4400, the Firestone's look like BFG's, the laid down stock tail lights, the old Coors bottles, the hot chick in the green bikini, s###... Guess I was born WAY to late...I think the part GETTING to where we are in offroad racing was WAY more fun than where we are now.....don't get me wrong, I am daily amazed with some of the vehicles being exibited on this site & what it takes to do it, BUT! This 30+ stuff is way more fun than a Ranger w an Ls whatever ALL day long!
 

Bro_Gill

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Chubs- There is no easy way to say it, even with all the effort and trying by the Martellis, the old Mint 400 was THE EVENT back then. I just don't know if you can duplicate all the cool things that came together to make that event so epic. From the closing of Fremont Street for Tech, the prerunning the week before the race, Start/Finish at the Speedrome, and the way Vegas was back then-1.99 breakfast buffets and 3.99 steak dinners and all of them all you can eat! It was just the best race of the Year, Our Daytona Speed Week. Baja 1000 is the greatest race, but the Mint 400 was the best EVENT we did. Riverside ran close, but Vegas, Babeee!
 
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