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Roy Fjasted 1935-2018
Roy’s love for hot rodding began in his early teen years and has only grew with the passage of time. In 1951 he entered his first drag race, driving a 1950 Chevrolet, at Santa Ana Dragstrip; winning his first trophy the following year. Roy was a member of the Burbank California based “Road Kings Car Club” whose member roster included a “Who’s Who” of drag racing stars such as Tommy Ivo, Don Prudhomme, and Bob Muravez. For a young man the car club was a great place for learning new equipment, exchanging ideas, and gossip among the members.
Roy built his first dragster in his home garage in 1955 which incorporated new ideas and construction using a Chrysler engine for power and nitromethane for fuel. This established Roy on his fabrication career path for which he became well-known.
Four years later, in 1959, Roy went to work for Scotty Fenn at Chassis Research shop where he was able to learn even more about building safe and competitive cars from one of the leading builders of the time.
By 1965 Roy had set out on his own opening his own chassis shop Fjastad’s Speed Products Engineering. The name was later shortened to Speed Products Engineering, and more commonly known as SPE. Roy’s talents and passions didn’t just lie and building chassis. He also produced his own hydro-forms safety bell housing’s, two-piece couplers, disc brakes, front wheels, steering boxes, and torsion bar assemblies. This also included mass-producing the many little tabs for mounting various pieces of equipment.
It didn’t take long for competing chassis builders to realize they could save a great deal of time and money by purchasing the very uniform SPE parts. Soon these pieces began to be a staple in the chassis building market and helped cement the SPE brand.
As a competitor Roy began competing at the Bonneville Salt Flats in the early 1950s with a car based around a war surplus aircraft belly fuel tank. He raced the belly tank car in the A/GRMR class at Bonneville every year until 2012.
In 1974 Roy sold SPE. Two years later he opened the doors of the Deuce Factory and went from building race cars to building street rods. After he started building street rods Roy noticed there was a demand in the market for 1932 Ford frame rails and, as with SPE days, began building and marketing his own improved version of the Ford style rails. In Roy’s typical approach to a project not only did he began to produce frame rails but did extensive research and the market’s needs. Soon the Deuce Factory launched a complete line of street rod suspensions and other sought-after parts and pieces.
With retirement on the horizon Roy sold the Deuce Factory in 1992 but immediately discovered that this wasn’t his cup of tea. Roy’s soon established another company, Full Bore Race Products, and began manufacturing line of specialty tools and fasteners. Roy ran the company until he was 80 years old.
Roy has been recognized as one of the leading chassis builders by his peers and the drag racing community. One of Roy’s most rewarding accomplishment was becoming a lifetime member and serving for six years as President of the elite Bonneville 200 MPH Club. Taking pride in contributing to and supporting the club’s day-to-day affairs and endeavors.
Roy was elated when Don Garlits called him advising he had been inducted into the International Drag Racing Hall of Fame. Roy told everyone how much he looked forward to attending the event and receiving this proud recognition. Unfortunately, Roy passed away two weeks prior to the ceremony and banquet.