Speed Mechanics - Magazine Covers - 1953 to 1965
Speed Mechanics was a bi-monthly East coast magazine published by Hobby Publications from 1953 to 1965. The publishers were Joseph Hardie and Ray Kelly, with publishing offices at 1140 East West Highway, Silver Springs, Maryland. Executive offices were in New York, and Griffith Borgeson and Eugene Jaderquist were West coast editors. Hardie and Kelly managed several other titles including Motorsport, Auto Craftsman, Custom Craft & Soup-Up.
The initial tag line was "proven pointers for better car performance", and the magazine had a fair amount of hot rod and custom content. It was advertised in Auto Craftsman as the only magazine "devoted 100% to clearcut, completely illustrated, detailed procedures on improving your car's appearance and performance". But by 1962 the content shifted more to drag racing and performance factory cars, and the tag line was changed to "the magazine for hot rodders".
Some covers are real hot rod illustration classics such as issues #1, #8 and #11. A similar illustration to issue #1 can be found on the April, 1951 Motorsport cover.
PUBLICATION DATA: Speed Mechanics held the #6 position in print volumes among automotive titles that provided paid circulation details in 1956. But then it fell and consistently held #11, #12 or #13 positions. It never gained any growth traction at a time when automotive magazines volumes were growing 16% annually.
Copyright 99W Speed, R.H. Carroll, Lake Oswego, OR. All Rights Reserved.