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Thread: Leonard Keller 1937

  1. #1
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    Default Leonard Keller 1937

    Came across a few old pictures. Leonard Keller - Keller Hardware
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    Last edited by Ron Hill; 10-08-2014 at 03:30 PM.

  2. #2
    Tomtall
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    Cool Keller pic

    Steve - That picture is a classic! Now thats when racing was racing. No $10,000 enclosed trailers with a 4 wd duelly puling it. A few boats a couple motors and a box of props. I love it. Thanks for the post.

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    Administrator Ron Hill's Avatar
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    Default Keller

    When Keller sent you a speedometer, he always typed a whole letter on a samll (4 X 5) piece of paper. Usually told a story or two about someone. I loved it when my dad bought things, because the stories were so good. He always signed them KELLER.

    I only met Leonard Keller once, and that was at Prineville, Oregon 1966.

    I sold many speedomter to jet boat racers in the 1960-70. What I didn't know until I took one of his speedometers aprt, that he typed the purchaser's name on a piece of masking tape and taped it inside the speedo...and th date.

    I'll bet there are over 100 Keller speedometers with my name in the inside...

    Keller would have loved the internet...

    No one's speedometers were better, "Kellers" as they were called, were the GPS/computers of the era!!!

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    Team Member Master Oil Racing Team's Avatar
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    Default

    I loved those little letter Ron. I still have a couple. I will try to find them. They were usually funny. I wish I still had at least one Keller to hang on the wall. When we were running runabouts we had four or five to get within the proper speed range. As you say, in those days when someone talked about their Keller, it meant speedometer. Most mounted a bracket for the head right below the cowling behind the steering wheel although I had seen a couple of mounts on the floor. Then at some point Keller made a steering wheel that you could buy a mount that would screw into the hub of the steering wheel. That was important because on some of our larger rigs we had to mount the head sideways to look at the needle easier when the hydro was aired out.



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    Default Keller

    We always tested with a KELLER. Each driver had his own and it was always kept in a safe secure place. When I completed my Invader Tunnel I asked Jack Leek if he had a KELLER I could borrow. He pulled one out of his desk drawer and said "here, keep it". I still have it and still keep it in a safe secure place. My KELLER is special, to me, as it has "LEEK" stamped into the face. I never opened it up, but would guess inside is a piece of masking tape that says Jack Leek. Thanks Jack.

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    Administrator Ron Hill's Avatar
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    Default Come On Jim...

    Jim, you've got to open it up....It would be interesting...

    It is kind fo like when Jimbo and I were at Jack Leek's memorial....I asked Burt Ross's daughters if their dad like to "Fly Fish" and they said, "Yes..."

    Do you happen to recall, march 1978. We were at Blue Water marina...(You, me and Freddy Hauenstein).

    First run out with the Crazyhorse, we loaded the plugs (I thought we'd blown the motor). I had my brother's 125 MPH Keller.

    Next run out (I'd never seen over 108 on that Keller with a V-4 Super Strangler)....I started to "Screw that V-6, CCC Evinrude on, and th the Keller went to 125 MPH)....

    I came in and said, "I pegged my brother's Keller, I need the 150 MPH Keller). We out the 150 MPH Keller in the boat and I wemt out an ran a 122 MPH.

    Freddy told me everything looked good, and if his ride "Broke Down" he'd drive with me...

    I remember driving up to Havasu, with my two kids,wife and Molinari boat...We checked into the hotel, the boiat had muddy feet print on the deck,but there was that 150 MPG Keller duct taped in...

    I remember going to sleep that night (Friday) thinking..Hmm Freddy and I had finished third the year before going 108 and I saw 122 on a NEW KELLER....I could win this Parker 9 Hour....if I had Ted may or Freddy Hauenstein as a co driver as I could not drive all day at those speeds...

    I told Brad Miller, the next day, we would not embarrass Crazyhorse campgrounds...

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    Default keller

    We always called them the "lie detectors". When I got my 1st 1 it was like getting a piece of art. Loaned it out and never saw it again.
    I had one more that I put in an Allison JP I restored as few years back for a friend, because the boat deserved it. Sent it off to Nordskog for calibration. THey ran a set of numbers but would not adjust it. THey did offer me any new speedo they produced if I wanted to let it go. No deal.
    They may not have been as accurate as GPS but were very consistant, which was great for testing.

  8. #8
    Administrator Ron Hill's Avatar
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    Default The "lie detector" Was A Real Thing

    Funny you'd calla Keller a "Lie Detector" as there really was a "Lie Detector", invented by George Stiener, I think..(My brother will correct me, if I'm wrong)...A "Lie Detector was really a Check Valve in the line leading to the speedometer (Basically it was a valve stem from an inner tube...This valve held the speedometer to the max speed and you had to bend the speedometer line to let the air out.

    My dad hooked a "Lie Detector" up to my brother Finson (Spelled wrong) speedometer because my brother would just look at the speedometer and never look where the hell he was going. My dad finally told him, "Look where you're going GOD D^&* It and we'll read the speedometer when you come in...

    Even when my brother wa small and he'd raced my sister, on bicycles, he'd put his head down and go like hell, until he'd hit a parked car...

    Kind of like John Drake's Uncle Stan, he was timing his GN in the garage in Havasu, and the boat caught fire, and then the garage caught fire and then the house burned down. Sometime, stuff just happens...

    Old John Drake like to watch his water skiis, in smooth water, go pitter, pat, pitter pat, then he hit a dock...After that, he watched where he was going...

    Until Chad's wedding when Capnzee drove the damn golf cart into the sprinklers...and John Drake and his wifee, Bea, fell off.....

    Anyway, a KELLER was always Keller in our family and a lie detecter alwys worked perfect, except if the OLD MAN DROVE THE BOAT!!!!

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    Default Lie Detectors

    One reason Kellers worked so good was that they didn't cover the whole range of speed from 0-120.

    Back in the days when I ran runabouts we were at Alexandria and a fellow Texan who had a C runabout came up to borrow one of our Kellers. He was a big guy and his runabout wasn't exactly a streak of lightning. My Dad handed him the Keller that went from 50 to 75 and he complained "That won't do me any good, I'm running somewhere in the 80's". So we had another one that I think went from around 75 to 105 and gave him that one.

    In a little while he came stomping back to the pits with a big frown and set the Keller down on our trailer and turned to walk away. My Dad asked him if he needed it longer to test more wheels and he just grumbled "It don't work".



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    Administrator Ron Hill's Avatar
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    Default I Was Up To Apple Valley Marine....

    I was up to Apple Valley Marine, yesterday, with Tinker "George" Collinge....No, I didn't blow up no stinking battery...as Capnzee wasn't there to help me do something STUPID.....Anyway, Apple valley Marine is on five acres.....oh, I did steal Mickey Schwarzenbach's breaker bar.... I was actually up to Apple Valley Marine on a "TOP SECRET" Mission to get John Roth's mid section and return it...

    Can you BELIEVE, that John Roth LOANED me a $2,000 mid section in OCTOBER of 2006, and he wanted it BACK??? So, I'll fix him, I'm just going to give it back!

    Anyway, I had Tinker and Mickey's son taking the mid section off, only about 89 degrees, being the "ADMINISTRATOR" that I am, I started looking arounf this five acres...I see this trash can, real trash can....

    Actually, Tinker and I were having a contest, I had had a LARGE DIET COKE and he had had a large Iced Tea, and we were betting how would have to go first....So, when I saw this trash can, behind the house trailer, I considered "CHEATING" in our contest...But, all of a sudden, I see Keller speedometers, Keller throttles, DeSilva throttle and a bunch of props sticking out of this box, hell, I forget I have to "PEE"...

    I think I've entered the Twilight Zone....

    I load the trash barrel in my truck and tell Mickey, "Hey, remember you said you had some props somewhere??? Well, I found them, and I'm taking them...." Mickey looks at me like, "HUH???"

    Anyway, the first Keller, doesn't have a name, only a number. The sending Keller says, "Cut of Curry".....NOt, it just says, 4-27-71...Newer Keller must not have had the buyers name....either that, or someone took their nams out...as neither Keller has a name, like I thought they all did...

    Check out these CLASSIC KELLERS...
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    Last edited by Ron Hill; 07-20-2007 at 06:48 PM.

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