Mr. Norm might not outsmart the devil, but he sure forked the feds with his GSS super-charged Demon.
Back in the dark days of the 1970s, perfor-mance freaks were getting smacked from all sides. Federal crybabies were wringing their hands about unsafe horsepower and killer pollution. Insurance nerds were raising premiums on anything that got across the intersection quicker than their grandmother in a wheelchair. Performance engine and drivetrains options were falling by the wayside as carmakers scrambled to turn out clean air milquetoast dudmobiles.
Performance car dealers were in a bind. Some retrained their salesmen to sell car mats, undercoating and paint sealant. But Mr. Norm of Grand Spaulding Dodge fame was different. His GSS 440 Darts of the late ’60s and 340 6-Pack Demons of the early ’70s were the stuff of legends. And Mr. Norm wasn’t about to turn Grand Spaulding Original Mr. Norm’s decal was said to be next to left taillight and was partially removed. Second decal was added to decklid cor-ner where it was supposed to go. Dodge into an air freshener emporium.
Touring the SEMA show in 1970, Mr. Norm checked out the Paxton supercharger booth, and was captivated by the belt-driven blower on dis-play. Lights flashed and whis-tles went off in Mr. Norm’s brain, as he mentally removed the tri-carb setup on a 340 Demon and installed a blower. After all, with watered down compres-sion ratios at hand for low-and no-lead gas, the factory was kind enough to supply blower pistons as standard equipment.
A call to Paxton confirmed that the supercharger with a boost limit of 7 psi would work on a 340. And there would be no problem fitting all the other stuff necessary to support the blower in the engine compartment. The package itself was developed by Paxton, and the Supercharged Demon GSS was released in the latter part of 1971 as a ’72 model. For a modest $3595, you got a car that was as easy on the insurance premium as it was at the gas pump.
Out of the box on skimpy E70-14 fiberglass-belted tires, the blown 340 Demon was good for high 13-second passes. Substitute slicks, more gear and open headers, and low-13s was just a mash of the loud pedal away – which was a lot more than a set of tape stripes provided.
Mr. Norm’s huffer Demon was a one-year deal as it became illegal for a deal-er to do these kinds of fun things after ’72.
The 21,000-mile unrestored original GSS you see here belongs to its third owners – Dennis and Sandy Begyn, from Taylor Ridge, IL. Dennis estimates that the smallblock, fitted with a 1000 cfm Thermoquad, Comp Cams’ 470/270 bumpstick, electronic ignition, recurved distributor and ported ’n’ polished big valve heads is good for some 450 ponies. All the original paperwork came with the car, including two warranty claims for crushed carb floats. The deal-er fix on this was to install floats that were epoxy coated for added strength.
By the way, if you’re wondering what-ever happened to Mr. Norm, he’s back in business selling performance cars at the original Grand Spaulding location – 3300 W. Grand Ave., in Chicago. If you’re interested in Grand Spaulding Dodge’s nostalgia and memorabilia, including the just-released dealer docu-mentation for Grand Spaulding Dodge new car deliveries from 1969 through 1974, check with the exclusive
source – Motorsports Racing at (619)