Corvette Glossary Of Terms – S


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Corvette Glossary Of Terms

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SCCA (Sports Car Club of America)

A club and sanctioning body supporting road racing, rallying, and autocross in the United States. Formed in 1944, it runs many programs for both amateur and professional racers. SCCA content courtesy of Wikipedia. Corvsport Page References: 1988 Corvette Overview.

Scott, Myron E.

September 16, 1907-October 4, 1998. Was the creator of the All-American Soap Box Derby. He is also credited with naming Chevrolet’s sports car, the Corvette.

Scott was born in Camden, Ohio. After school hours, he worked for the Dayton Daily News and learned photography, and had pictures published in Life Magazine and other publications.

In 1933, as chief photographer for the Dayton Daily News, he came across a few boys racing one another down a hill in vehicles made of orange crates and soap boxes. With the intention of getting a good photo story and local race with prizes, he persuaded the boys to return with more racers and soapbox cars.

Scott was so enthusiastic with the whole concept that he acquired its copyright; the national-scale Soap Box Derby grew out of this idea. In 1934, Scott managed to persuade 50 cities across the United States to hold soap box car races and send a champion each to Dayton for a major race, a proposal that Chevrolet subsequently sponsored in 1935. The race was later held at Talmadge Hill in Akron, Ohio.

Scott later went on to work for Chevrolet, where he named the Corvette. Chevrolet wanted a non-animal name starting with “C” for the sports car in 1953, and Scott chose the name of a fast ship, the corvette. Myron E. Scott’s Biographical content courtesy of Wikipedia. Corvsport Page References: C1 Overview.

Scrub Radius

The distance in front view between the king pin axis and the center of the contact patch of the wheel, where both would theoretically touch the road.

The kingpin axis is the line between the upper and lower ball joints of the hub. On a MacPherson strut, the top pivot point is the strut bearing, and the bottom point is the lower ball joint. The inclination of the steering axis is measured as the angle between the steering axis and the centerline of the wheel. This means that if the camber angle is adjustable within the pivot points the scrub radius can be changed, this alters the width and offset of the tires on a vehicle.

>If the kingpin axis intersection point is outboard of the center of the contact patch it is negative, if inside the contact patch it is positive. The term scrub radius derives from the fact that either in the positive or negative mode, the tire does not turn on its centerline (it scrubs the road in a turn) and due to the increased friction, more effort is needed to turn the wheel. Content courtesy of Wikipedia. Corvsport Page References: 1988 Corvette Overview.

Sebring Raceway

A road course auto racing facility located near Sebring, Florida.  Sebring (pronounced “sea bring”) Raceway is one of the oldest continuously-operating race tracks in the United States, its first race being run in 1950.  Many consider Sebring to be one of the classic race tracks in North American sports car racing, and plays host to the “12 Hours of Sebrin”g, one of the legs of the unofficial triple crown of endurance racing.  The raceway occupies a portion of Sebring Regional Airport, an active airport for private and commercial traffic that was originally built as a WWII Army Air Forces training base called Hendricks Field.

Sebring is most notable for hosting the 12 Hours of Sebring, sanctioned at various times by the FIA, IMSA, and now, the ALMS. The track also hosts the Legends of Motorsports and Historic Sportscar Racing series, and is the winter home of the Skip Barber Racing School. Many IndyCar, sports prototype, and Grand Touring teams use Sebring for winter testing due to the warm climate. Content courtesy of Wikipedia. Corvsport Page References: C2 Corvette Overview, 1996 Overview.

Shinoda, Lawrence (Larry) Kiyoshi

March 25, 1930 – November 13, 1997) was a noted automotive designer who was best known for his work on the Chevrolet Corvette and Ford Mustang.

Shinoda was born in Los Angeles, California, and grew up in Southern California where he started developing his artistic talents in grade school.  He was interned with his family by the U.S. Government during WW II under U.S. Executive Order 9066 into a “War Relocation Camp” at Manzanar.  As a young man, he built hot rods and drag-raced them on the streets of Los Angeles.[1] With his 1924 Ford roadster, he won the first National Hot Rod Association (NHRA) Nationals that were held in Great Bend, Kansas, in 1955.

Shinoda attended the Art Center College of Design in Los Angeles (before it moved to Pasadena) but was kicked out, and went to work first for Ford Motor Company in 1955, then briefly with Packard, then General Motors in late-1956. Working with GM design chief Bill Mitchell and Corvette chief engineer Zora Arkus-Duntov, he refined work on concept cars that eventually translated into the 1963 Corvette Sting Ray and the 1968 version, patterned after Shinoda’s Mako Shark show car. Content courtesy of Wikipedia. Corvsport Page References: C2 Corvette Overview.

Smith, John Francis “Jack”, Jr.

Born April 6, 1938 he is the non-executive chairman of the board of directors of Delta Air Lines. Smith has been a member of Delta’s board of directors since 2000.  From 1996 to 2003, Smith was chairman of the board of directors of General Motors, and was that company’s CEO from 1992 to 2000.

Smith was born in Worcester, Massachusetts. He joined General Motors as a payroll auditor in 1961, moving to its financial group in New York City in 1966. He went on to hold positions ranging from director of international planning to president of GM Canada, president of GM Europe and head of international operations.

As CEO of GM, he undertook one of its most sweeping reorganizations, overturning a cumbersome and inefficient structure created in the 1920s by Alfred P. Sloan and left virtually unchanged since then. Starting with purchasing in 1992 and ending with engineering in 2003, he brought together separate overlapping functions related to the various divisions that formed the company, while also expanding operations into Asia. In this transformation, which included terminating the Oldsmobile brand, over 90% of core management positions were eliminated, corporate decision-making became faster and easier, production efficiencies and quality improved, and, above all, the bottom line went from near-bankruptcy losses to decent profits.[3] After he relinquished the CEO position in 2000 to his personally selected successor, Rick Wagoner, he continued on as Chairman to see his plan fully executed.

Along with his chairmanship of Delta, Smith is currently a director of several other entities, including Procter & Gamble and The Nature Conservancy. Smith is a trustee of Boston University. He graduated from St. John’s High School in Massachusetts and later received his Bachelor of Business Administration from the University of Massachusetts, Amherst in 1960 and his Master of Business Administration from Boston University in 1965. Courtesy of Wikipedia. Corvsport Page References: C5 Overview.

Smith, Roger Bonham

July 12, 1925 – November 29, 2007. Former Chairman and CEO of General Motors Corporation from 1981 to 1990, Roger Smith is widely known as the main subject of Michael Moore’s 1989 documentary film “Roger & Me.”

Smith spent virtually his entire professional career working for General Motors. Born in Columbus, Ohio, USA, Smith earned his bachelor degree in business administration at the University of Michigan in 1947, and his MBA at the University of Michigan Business School in 1953. He served in the United States Navy from 1944 to 1946.  Smith began his career at GM in 1949 as an accounting clerk, and had become the company’s treasurer by 1970, and vice president the following year. In 1974, Smith was elected executive vice president in charge of the financial, public relations, and government relations staffs. He ascended to GM’s chairmanship in 1981.

When Smith took over GM, it was reeling from its first annual loss since the early 1920s. Its reputation had been tarnished by lawsuits, persistent quality problems, bad labor relations, public protests over the installation of Chevrolet engines in Oldsmobiles and by a poorly designed diesel engine. GM was also losing market share to foreign automakers for the first time.

Smith instituted several initiatives that included forming strategic joint ventures with Japanese and Korean automakers, launching the Saturn division, investing heavily in technological automation and robotics, and attempting to rid the company of its risk-averse bureaucracy. However, Smith’s far-reaching goals proved too overambitious and overwhelming to actually be implemented effectively, in the face of the company’s resilient corporate culture and bureaucracy. Despite Smith’s vision, he was unable to successfully integrate GM’s major acquisitions, several of which also failed to tackle the root causes of GM’s fundamental problems.

Smith’s tenure is commonly viewed as a failure, as GM’s share of the US market fell from 46% to 35%, and as it took on considerable debt causing it to lapse close to bankruptcy in the early 1990s.  As a result, CNBC has called Smith one of the “Worst American CEOs of All Time”.

Smith died in his sleep on November 29, 2007 after a short battle with an unspecified illness. A specific cause of death has never been released. Content Courtesy of Wikipedia). Corvsport Page References: C5 Overview.

Stempel, Robert

Born July 15, 1933, Robert is a former Chairman and CEO of General Motors Corporation. He joined General Motors in 1958 as a design engineer at Oldsmobile and was key in the development of the front-wheel drive Toronado. He was also involved with the team that created the first catalytic converter.

In 1978, Stempel became General Manager of the Pontiac division and in 1980, he became Managing Director of Adam Opel AG, the German subsidiary of GM. In 1982, he became General Manager of Chevrolet. In January 1984, he became VP and Group Executive in Charge of the Buick-Oldsmobile-Cadillac group. In 1986, he was elected to the board of directors, where he served until he “retired” (the board of directors essentially forced him out, presumably as a “scapegoat” for GM’s woes at the time) in 1992. Currently he is Chairman of Energy Conversion Devices Inc. Robert Stempel’s Biographical content courtesy of Wikipedia. Corvsport Page References: 1984 Corvette Overview, C5 Corvette Overview.

Sting Ray III

The 1992 Chevrolet Corvette Sting Ray III concept (known internally as the “California Corvette”) made its debut at the 1992 Detroit Auto Show. It was a totally original design using new architecture and hi-tech materials. One of these was carbon fiber, which gave the vehicle strength and flexibility without adding extra weight. Painted black cherry, with styling reminiscent of Corvettes of the 1960’s, the Sting Ray III had the same 102-inch wheelbase as the 1992 Corvette, but its body was two inches shorter.

The original running prototype proposed a high-output V6 engine but by its 1992 show debut it was packing 300 horsepower from a LT-1 V8 with a rear-mounted gearbox. Sting Ray III content courtesy of GM Heritage Center. Corvsport Page References: 1992 Corvette Overview.

Stovebolt Six

The original Chevrolet straight-six engine is referred to as a Stovebolt or Stovebolt Six because the 1/4″ × 20 slotted-head bolts within the engine resemble the slotted-head bolts often used as a fastener on wood-burning stoves. Thus, the slang term or nickname of “Stovebolt” was given to the Chevrolet straight-six engine.

The Chevrolet straight sixes were available in vehicles from 1929 to the early 1960s.  The later 1960’s engines no longer used the slotted-head bolt (even though a lot of the design and layout was similar to, or derivative of, the earlier engines) and are not considered by old-Chevrolet enthusiasts as Stovebolt Sixes.

Since the Stovebolt Six was used or available in almost every Chevrolet vehicle offered during the production run of the engine, the term Stovebolt also became synonymous with Chevrolet-branded automobiles and trucks. Stovebolt Six content courtesy of Wikipedia.. Corvsport Page References: C1 Overview1953 Overview, 1955 Overview.

Supplemental Inflatable Restraint (SIR)

More commonly known as airbags, the supplemental inflatable restraint system is a vehicle safety device.  It is an occupant restraint consisting of a flexible envelope designed to inflate rapidly during an automobile collision, to prevent occupants from striking interior objects such as the steering wheel or a window. Modern vehicles may contain multiple airbags in various side and frontal locations of the passenger seating positions, and sensors may deploy one or more airbags in an impact zone at variable rates based on the type and severity of impact; the airbag is designed to only inflate in moderate to severe frontal crashes. SIR content courtesy of Wikipedia. Corvsport Page References: 1990 Overview.

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