A Different Kind of Digger
By Pete Garramone
Nickelson Tool & Die dragster, 1959. Photo by Pete Garramone
This first photo was taken at
Continental Divide Raceway in 1959. It's the Nickelson Tool and Die
entry from Wichita, Kansas, sporting an opposed Continental airplane
engine. It held a record for four bangers.
Nickelson Tool & Die dragster, 1960. Photo by Pete Garramone
Fast forward to the 1960 AHRA Nats
and out comes a new version of the Nickelson car. An absolute
beauty! Built of nearly all stainless steel, this car was flawless.
Heavy, yes, but the workmanship on this car remains inspiring. The
dust caps on the front wheels were machined so close that you couldn't
see a parting line. I have no idea how well the car ran. Being a
toolmaker at the time, I was impressed with the machine work on this
car. I still am.
Nickelson Tool & Die dragster, front view. Photo by Pete Garramone
Nickelson Tool & Die dragster, rear view. Photo by Pete Garramone