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Grant's Special
John Quam's 1914 4-40 Semi-Racer

Herman, 1914 Kissel
John Quam with his 1914 KisselKar 4-40 Semi-Racing

Last update: Dec. 21, 2008


There are three Model 4-40 cars known by the KisselKar Klub to have survived to this day. They are:

  1. A Semi-Racer owned by John Quam (Montara, California), and the subject of this page;
  2. Herman, a Touring car owned by Andrew and Cindy Wilson (Brunswick, Maine); and
  3. Annie, a Touring car owned by Lynn and Jeanne Kissel (Livermore, California).

Lynn first met John Quam at the 100-year anniversary celebration of the Kissel Motor Car Company in 2006. John was showing his beautiful 1925 Kissel 8-75 Speedster. Somewhat to his surprise, Lynn learned that John lives in Montara, only about 60 miles from Lynn's home in Livermore.

After acquiring Annie, Lynn has a new reason to contact John, renew his acquaintance and learn more about his 1914 Semi-Racer. After telephone and email exchanges, Lynn meets John in a automotive body shop in San Mateo. The two Kissel owners spend an enjoyable afternoon discussing the nuances of the design, construction and restoration of these rare motor vehicles. Here are some pictures that Lynn took of John and his car.

         
Quam's 1914 Semi-Racer Quam's 1914 Semi-Racer Quam's 1914 Semi-Racer Quam's 1914 Semi-Racer
Quam's 1914 Kissel Semi-Racer Quam's 1914 Kissel Semi-Racer Quam's 1914 Kissel Semi-Racer Quam's 1914 Kissel Semi-Racer
Quam's 1914 Kissel Semi-Racer Quam's 1914 Kissel Semi-Racer Quam's 1914 Kissel Semi-Racer Quam's 1914 Kissel Semi-Racer
Quam's 1914 Kissel Semi-Racer Quam's 1914 Kissel Semi-Racer Quam's 1914 Kissel Semi-Racer Quam's 1914 Kissel Semi-Racer
Quam's 1914 Kissel Semi-Racer Quam's 1914 Kissel Semi-Racer Quam's 1914 Kissel Semi-Racer Quam's 1914 Kissel Semi-Racer
Quam's 1914 Kissel Semi-Racer Quam's 1914 Kissel Semi-Racer Quam's 1914 Kissel Semi-Racer Quam's 1914 Kissel Semi-Racer
Quam's 1914 Kissel Semi-Racer Quam's 1914 Kissel Semi-Racer Quam's 1914 Kissel Semi-Racer Quam's 1914 Kissel Semi-Racer
Quam's 1914 Kissel Semi-Racer Quam's 1914 Kissel Semi-Racer Quam's 1914 Kissel Semi-Racer Quam's 1914 Kissel Semi-Racer
Quam's 1914 Kissel Semi-Racer      
Photos of John Quam and his 1914 Kissel 4-40 Semi-Racer
         

As you can see, John is nearing the end of a several year restoration of his car. After tearing the car down to the frame, he is in the middle of the reassembly process.

Lynn learns that this car was originally a touring model. A previous owner rebodied the car as a semi-racer.

It is an advantage to find John's car in a state of partial disassembly. This makes taking detailed pictures of the mechanical and electrical components of the car particularly easy.

John shows Lynn many interesting features of the car, including the engine valve assemblies, the full floating rear axles and details of the 6/12V electrical system.

The pictures show the extreme care and thoroughness that John is exercising in his restoration. Each part has been disassembled, cleaned, repaired, and refinished before it goes back on the car.

Having John and his car so close will likely be a huge benefit to Lynn. With only three of these rare vehicles in the world, Lynn is indeed fortunate to have John Quam and Andrew Wilson as resources. It's likely that if Lynn can't figure out the answer to a question about 1914 Kissel Model 4-40's, John or Andrew will have the the needed insight.

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Copyright © 2015 Lynn Kissel
Last updated: May 24, 2009