Name That Part: Italian Stallion Edition

Here’s a chance to show off both your car parts knowledge, and your appreciation of high quality film entertainment. The following picture is a part from a car, and if it were still on that car, 98.2% of you would guess it in a nanosecond. That’s why it was dragged out, naked and alone, so as to be a bit more confusing. Still, this isn’t rocket science (nor Mad Science) so most of you should be able to get this one pretty quickly, and to help out there is that reference to the Sylvester Stallone movie about the Sport of Kings of the Road- Over the Top. Therein lies a clue.
Sylvester Stallone’s career seems to have taken a downward arc, as his movies, over the past 30 or so years, have gotten more cartoonish and have done more poorly at the box office. But Over the Top still stands out as one of his crowning achievements- I mean, how can you not love a character named Lincoln Hawk?! Top that off with some of the most gripping arm-wrestling action ever captured on film, and a poignant story of a man’s love for a boy that doesn’t seem like an ad for NAMBLA, and you’ve got yourself a winner! Also a winner is whomever guesses correctly what in the hell this thing is. So, put on your thinking caps, or your aluminum foil beanies, and give it a go.
Oh, by the way:
For those of you still curious about the part on Friday’s Name That Part, it was the “planar” suspension setup from an early Studebaker; specifically, a 1937 Studebaker Dictator 6A. The suspension is a very distant relative of Ford’s famous Twin I-Beam front suspension, but only barely. So why all the references to record players? Simple. The suspension was one of the first attempts at an independent front suspension setup, and once they developed the A-arm and strut-based suspension systems, they were found to be superior, so the Planar system was abandoned. Almost. It made a comeback, somewhat, about 40 years later in some high-end record systems. Flip it upside down, and it’s remarkably similar to the suspension used to control the needle-arm on many expensive record players. They even used the same name.
UPDATE: Armand4 nailed it- both the part, and the Sly Stallone reference. That is an Armstrong lever arm shock absorber, although not from my Healey, but from a ’72 MG Midget (the round arch year) that I bought, stripped and disposed of a few years back. These shocks are wicked common under a mess of British cars, and you can’t swing a dead cat but hit one at a Healey event. They were also used on Cortina wagons for their low profile-ness and seem to last forever with proper maintenance. The Stallone movie was all about the arm wrestling- Armstrong – strong arms, get it? If you want to learn more about these, check this out.
Good job, man.
Image Source: []


  1. I have no freakin’ idea, so I’m just gonna throw a guess out there. It’s either part of a power or crank window mechanism.

  2. Oh, I just thought of something else – I wonder if that’s a hydraulic pump and linkage for a convertible top?

  3. It is a lever shock absorber. Got me on the make and model. The Brits were some of the last ones to use them.

    1. I’m with you. It’s a dampener, but from what I don’t know. I’d guess it’s something Italian. Alfa?

  4. Steering box with pitman arm attached? Given Sly’s Over the Top Character, I’ll say it’s a Lincoln part… or perhaps from a Studebaker Hawk?

  5. Steering gear with pitman arm attached? I have no guesses as to what kind of car, and I’m not even confident in my guess to begin with.

  6. That’s a lever-actuated hydraulic shock absorber, exactly like the ones attached to the rear axle of my Sunbeam. It’s also a reminder that I need to take mine out, brush the crud off them, and top them up with oil. I can’t tell the make (mine are Armstrong) but the linkage makes me assume it’s for the rear end. MGBs, Sprites and other BMC cars had some cool front lever shocks that acted as the upper A-arm in the front suspension.
    And trying to move the lever while holding the shock body (so that you can bolt it back into the car when it’s on jackstands) feels an awful lot like arm-wrestling Sylvester Stallone.

    1. The “Armstrong-arm wrestling” connection just hit me like a ton of bricks. How did I miss that before?
      Having missed it at first, I’m going to go all in: It’s an Armstrong lever shock, it’s from Graverobber’s Spridget, and it’s from the left rear corner of the car.

  7. Just coming by to throw in a vote for a steering pump and arm (of some kind). My techxpertise is limited, especially with respect to vintage/outdated stuff.

    1. I remember a guy named Ash78 from my past. Could it be the same guy? Come back to bring smiles to our faces and cheer to our hearts?

      1. The greatest trick Ash78 ever pulled was convincing teh Intarnets he really exists.
        And like that…
        he was gone.

        1. He can’t be seen hanging around with Hooniverse riff-raff, lest his star be taken away.

  8. I’m on team lever shock absorber. Given the Stallone and Italian Stallion references, I’m going to go with a Ferrari. I haven’t a clue with Ferrari, but I like the 410 Superamerica, which used this setup. So, yeah, I’m going to say it’s off a 410 Superamerica.

  9. I like the rationale and the idea of the lever-damper. I also like the fact that both Lincoln — in the Zephyr — and Studebaker — although the Hawk information is contradictory — used lever shock absorbers. Every photo I can find, however, has the lever attached to the end of the hydraulic cylinder, not the side.
    It’s also looking appallingly familiar, but I just can’t place it. It does look a bit like the armstrong steering assembly from a T-bucket, but it’s just not quite right.

  10. The whole BluRay thing just occurred to me, and it just amazes me that they’d waste money doing that. First of all, it was recorded before HD, BluRay will not improve its quality much! Secondly, could there be enough people out there thinking, “Man, I really have wanted to own a copy of Over The Top for a long time, if only it were available on BluRay.” to make it worth the investment? And lastly, which stores with any taste are going to stock this POS movie? Well, I guess Walmart will handle that part.

    1. There’s no such thing as HD with respect to photographic film, and even today most movies are shot on 35mm film.
      The highest resolution supported by Blu-ray is 1080p, or, more specifically, 1920×1080. That’s a little less than 2.1 megapixels. If you’ve ever tried to print a picture taken by a digital camera with a resolution like that, even a normal 4×6 print will look terrible. Yet so many analog 35mm cameras have produced so many great prints, 8×10 and even larger… that’s because film, unlike digital images or television, doesn’t have pixels or lines. It’s recorded onto film and, in the theatre, projected from film.
      So a Blu-ray is still a downward conversion from the original film. It’s like a DVD, just not as far down. That’s why 2001: A Space Odyssey on Blu-ray is hella tight compared with the DVD version, even though it wasn’t shot “in HD”.

      1. They say you learn something new every day. Thanks for the info. That said, you can’t improve the video quality of this movie enough to make it a worthwhile way to spend 2 hours.

    1. I think you’re close, but the photos I can find show a very large metal box with two small cylinders off one side, not a small box with two large cylinders. Although you convinced me that it is a knee-action shock absorber, it’s not from a mid-30s to early-40s Buick or Chevrolet, based on the photos I’ve found. So how does that tie in to the hint?

  11. My first thought, looking at the picture was an old fashion damper, before shock absorbers were used. Reading the text with its alleged clues make me lean towards part of a convertible top mechanism…
    In other words, I got nothin’

  12. Okay, regarding last time’s answer: how long did that setup stick around, under names unlike Marantz? In other words, any chance my friend’s dad’s ’48 Land Cruiser (no, not FJ) has ’em?

  13. Looks like a wiper motor, and part of the linkage assembly, to me. A little squirt of oil and it should be good as new.

  14. On second, thought, it could be the master cylinder for a car that;s probably way over the cliff by now.

  15. I cringed when I saw this. Why Hoons, WHY?!?
    See, I was supposed to go out this afternoon and replace the shock valves on the Killer Bee in prep for the next LeMons race. But I dragged my ass and it got late, then it started raining so I thought I was free from it for the day.
    Then you hit me in the face with this picture.
    Ok fine, I’ll go do it. But if I get the sniffles I want some chicken soup damnit.

    1. We’re all very proud of your work ethic…
      Don’t forget the rubber bushings on the arm that connects the shock’s actuator lever to the axle housing!

  16. Nobody’s gonna believe me because the answer is already up there, but I did correctly identify it as a lever action shock absorber when I saw the picture. An old buddy has a Sprite and an MGB, and I’ve helped him wrench on it. I didn’t peek, I swear.

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