Saturday, June 30, 2007

Of all the luck....

Well, doesn't it always happen this way? Yesterday, we had dentist appoints for all the kids and my wife and I. I was supposed to leave early with my oldest son so that we could get to our appointments. My wife was to come later with the other kids.

I got about a mile down the road and my message center on the dash lit up. "Low Tire Pressure". Well, I immediately pulled to the side of the road to get out and check my tires. Lo and behold, the rear, driver's side tire was low. I immediately got back in the car, turned around and headed home to get another vehicle.

This morning, I jacked the car up, and with the help of my oldest son, we took the tire off of the car to see if we could find the reason for the loss of air pressure. Well, as soon as the tire was off the car it was obvious. a very LARGE nail was embedded in the tread.

We loaded the tire up in the mini-van and took it to an auto-repair shop in a nearby town. There the tire was quickly plugged, for a bill of $7.50. We took the tire home and quickly got it back on the car.

Stopped by Pop's

I stopped by my parent's house the other day. My mother is planning a BIG garage sale this weekend, and my wife has LOTS of STUFF to put in it.

I loaded up "Great White" 1985 15 passenger Dodge "beast" with lots of bags of clothing, a computer, television, microwave, exercise bike, and several tables (plus lots of other stuff) and took it up to my folks house. We spent some time that day sorting and tagging items.

Later in the week, we went back over so that my wife could finish tagging her items. While I was there, I took the opportunity to take a few more pics of my dad's '47 Chevrolet.

Camera phones and Rivieras

Thank goodness for camera phones! You never know when or where you will run across a nice example of a classic car.

This past week, I spent a few days in Dublin, Ohio at an Ohio School Principal Conference. While I was there, my wife and I walked a few blocks to a Max and Erma's for dinner on the first night.

In front of the restaurant was a large banner promoting an upcoming car show. The cool thing was that they had this beautiful Buick parked in
front of the building as well.

After we ate, my youngest and I went out and looked the car over. The car was a beautiful interior with a deep black exterior.

For some reason, I really like mid-60's Buicks. Great lines....and they look really cool lowered with a little larger diameter wheels and low profile tires.

It's too bad that I will not be able to return to catch the car show...I think it is July 7th and 8th. At any rate, it's always great to get to see a great

Now that we are in the "thick" of summer, I'm hoping to be able to post more blog posts with pictures from area car shows.

Tuesday, June 26, 2007

Wheels of Time Museum

Isn't technology a wonderful thing? We got a satellite dish a couple of years ago and I've been using my DVR ever since. For the past few weeks, we've had a "trial" subscription to the SPEED channel. I've been recording several shows, but one of my favorites is "My Classic Car" with Dennis Gage. I've actually seen Dennis at a couple of car shows in my day. I think the last time was during the James Dean Festival in Fairmount, Indiana.

At any rate, I watched an episode today in which Dennis toured a fairly new museum in Maggie Valley, NC. The name of the museum is "Wheels of Time" and it contains a collection of rare and vintage motorcycles and automobiles. The cool thing about the museum is that it is a "running museum", meaning everything in the place is in operational order. The guy who owns it also tears down and restores cars right in the museum. While Dennis Gage was there, he had a Duesenberg's engine dissassembled. He said it is a great educational tool to show people how these old cars work.

One of the cars that he took Dennis a ride in was what may be the 1st "hotrod". This car was built by Cletus Clobes. I was so interested in the car and the museum, that I got online and found the website for the museum. I've included a link and also the information I found out about the "Clobes". (Old Cletus does look to happy to be reunited with his car in 1989 does he?!)

(Taken from the Wheels of Time website:

"As far as the world knows, the Clobes Special is the world’s first street rod. The car has a unique history and I sure wish it could talk. The builder of the car, Cletus Clobes, was a multi-talented person. He built his own home; he built his own motorcycle; and he built this car. It has many advanced features including: a dropped and filled axle, a z’ed frame, an adjustable chassis, split hood with locks, concealed radiator cap and gas cap, battery and horn under hood, telescoping mirror, rain gutters, steering column mounted, motometer and on and on and on. The car was purchased in 1989 out of the home where Cletus lived. It was parked there for over 40 years. The World War II gas ration stickers are still pasted inside on the windshield. The car was sold at a walk-through-the-house sale for $800.00. It changed one hand and came into the possession of Bill Anderson of Hudson, Illinois. Bill called me and said "You've gotta have this car”, and I obliged. The car is in good running order and I’ve used it occasionally, including one trip to Mt. Pulaski, where the car was reunited with old Cletus, as pictured. Cletus was a man of many talents in his younger years. He is known in the music circle’s as a band drummer. Cletus played with Tiny Hill and many other Big Band's."
We take a trip to Charleston, SC every summer, and this year my parents are planning to go too. If I can't talk my wife into swinging by Maggie Valley, NC on the way home, maybe my dad and mom can check the place out. At any rate...someone needs to get some pictures for the blog...right?

Sunday, June 24, 2007

My friend's latest find...

Well, driving by my friend's house this week, I noticed he had something new in his yard. It appeared to be a 46-48 Chevy Coupe. I stopped yesterday when I had a few minutes to find out the story on this one.
It is a 1948 Chevrolet Coupe (a year newer than the one my father has.) Seems he found this one in Portland, Indiana. The car currently is without a drive train, but the car came with a Corvette engine.
Looks like this one was restored at some point in it's life. You can't tell it from the photos, but the car is a teal green color.

Monday, June 11, 2007

"Keydog" Gets His 1st Dash Plaque

Well, we didn't get to take our annual trip to the Indy Goodguy Hot Rod Nationals this year. At $20.00 a person, dad was just to cheap!

Instead, we went up to the "Losantville Days" in Losantville, Indiana. They had a small car show, and I decided it would be cool to break out my youngest's new "wheels". I bought this car on eBay last winter, assemblied it, and have had it stored in the rafters of the garage waiting until the little guy was big enough to "power" it.

Well, he isn't quite ready to make it go, but the other night, he went "crazy" at Wal-mart over a red 2007 Mustang convertible Power-Wheel. He has also been enjoying "driving" the new shopping carts at Meijer as well. Have you seen these things? Rubber tires, seatbelts, a built in flat-screen TV and a steering wheel. The boy loves it!

I figured even though he couldn't peddle the hotrod yet, he would enjoy getting pushed around by his siblings in it. Well, as you can see from the photo....the boy loves his new ride. We took the car to the show and even was given a dash plaque!

Auburn, Cord, Duesenberg Museum and other thoughts

Well, as I stated in my last blog, I'm pretty "bummed" that I accidently lost all of my pictures that I took at the Kruse Auction, the Auburn, Cord, Duesenberg Museum, and the Kruse Museum last week!

I went back through my "digital achives" this week and found the pictures I took back in 2003 during my last visit to Auburn. It was interesting to see how the displays have changed in the 2 museums.

The ACD Museum has really changes much. Cars have been moved around. A few cars that were on display a few years ago are no longer their, etc. The cars had several unique and innovative features. One thing that I remember was the 3rd headlight located in the center of the front of the car.

One car that really interested me last time, and I was looking forward to seeing again was the Tucker. If I remember correctly, only 500+ Tuckers were ever produced. I believe the one that used to be on display was one of 400+ still in existence.

The Tuckers had several unique and innovative features. One that I remember in particular was the center mounted 3rd headlight. The headlight was attached to the steering and front wheel assembly. The idea was that the headlight beam would "lead" you around a dark corner when turning.
Another interesting feature to me was the lack of a dash on the passenger side of the car.
I will use the pictures I took 3 years ago in upcoming posts.

Monday, June 4, 2007

My friend the "Wheeler Dealer" part duex

Well, yesterday afternoon, I drove by my friends house. From my house, I come up a side road to his place. From my road, I can see behind his barn. The '57 had sat on a car trailer for a couple of days behind the barn. Yesterday however, I noticed that it was gone. "By gum", I said to my wife, "Donnie has gotten rid of that car already!" My wife responded, "No, I saw it sitting in front of the garage, off the trailer earlier today." "Then where is the trailer?", I asked.

As I turned the corner, my question was quickly answered. "He's went out and found another toy!", I exclaimed. The '57 was off the trailer, but in it's place was a patina'ed vintage Ford truck. "That looks like a '35 or '36.", I said as we passed his house.
Later that evening, I had a chance to talk with him after church. I guess he found the truck along State Route 40 during the BIG yard sale. (Every year people set up there "wares" along "National Road" US 40. The "sale" goes on for miles and miles and miles.) Donnie said he bought the truck, a boat and an engine off of the same guy.
At any rate, I stopped by his house on my way home this evening. When I pulled into his drive, he and a friend he introduced as "Willis, his 'ace' mechanic" had the hood up on the newly acquired '57. Donnie said they had replaced the points, but still hadn't been able to get the car to start. I stood and talked with the for a while, then turned my attention to the "pre-effie" on the trailer.

The truck has some cancer along the bottom of both door openings on the cab, but the doors themselves are in pretty decent shape for their age. Looking under the truck, there was some rust concerns in the frame, but again, surprising little. Fenders each had their share of rust and dents. The bed was filled with a couple spare front fenders, an extra door and a second hood.

The interior needs work. The headliner is gone and the seat, while still intact, would require some attention. The floors must be gone due to the plywood that is currently serving as a floor.

The Flathead V8 appears to have fairly new wiring. Donnie was told that the truck had ran in the not so distant past. Donnie has plans of making a "rat rod" out of this old girl.

As I left for home, I turned and jokingly said, "Hey, when you get the '57 running, honk when you go by my house!" Donnie replied, "Ha! It probably won't be tonight!"......

About an hour later, I heard a "rumble" in my driveway. My son jumped up, looked out the window and said, "Donnie's in the drive in the '57!"

Saturday, June 2, 2007

Trip to Kruse International Auto Auction

This morning, I loaded up a friend and his three boys and made the 2-hour trek to Auburn, Indiana. I've been wanting to take another trip to the Auburn, Cord, Duesenberg Museum. I've been up there a few times in the past, and I had a few free tickets that I received in a raffle a few years ago.

Well, this weekend seemed like a great time to head up. School's out and the Kruse Spring 2007 Auto Auction was taking place. This is something that I can remember attending with my father when I was a little guy, and I've been wanting to get back up there for this as well. I was hoping to take my father and oldest son with me, but they decided to take my father's 1947 chevy coupe to a cruise-in instead. (This is story for another blog).

The weather could not have been more beautiful. Blue skies and 85 degrees. We started at the Kruse Auction. We walked around and looked at all the vehicles that were waiting to be sold. Then we went into some of the buildings. A local Corvette club had several cars in one of the buildings, while another building was filled with car related/flea market stuff. Finally, we ventured into the main building were the auctions would be taking place. We sat down and watched as a motorcyle that did not meet reserve left the rotating stage. Next, a 1941 Chevrolet "Rat rod" drove onto the stage. The car was in primer with suicide doors. One of the auctioneers opened the door to reveal black leather seats and door panels that had green flame inserts. Another auctioneer said that the car had a 454 under the hood. At any rate, the car didn't bring the $10,000.00 (ha!) that the owner thought it was worth.

Next was a wave of several cars with "no reserve". The first was a good-looking 1973 Mercedes sedan. Sort of a metallic blue. The car was very straight, and ended up going for a mere $950.00 dollars! Next, an Austin Healey and then an Alpine Sunbeam both went for under $2,000.00 each.

After a few more cars had entered and left the auction area, my friend's boys decided they were getting hunger, so we got up and left the auction. We drove around Auburn until we found a Subway.

All in all, a great trip to the Kruse Auction. Next time I might even consider bringing along my checkbook.

After lunch we went on the the Auburn, Cord, Duesenberg Museum, and then the Kruse Automobile and Carriage Museum and the WWII Victory Museum. I will continue to tell the story of our adventures (and include addtional pictures taken on the trip) in future blog entries.

CRAP! I tried to clean up my hard drive tonight and load a bunch of my pics onto a CD to free up some space. I thought I got all the pictures I took in Auburn onto the disc. However, while I was trying to load some more pics into this post...I've realized that I may have LOST everything!!!! (did I already say, "crap"?)

Friday, June 1, 2007

My friend the "Wheeler-Dealer"

O.k., I've "blogged" before about my friend that has the Shay A and two 57 chevys. He recently came back from a winter in Florida, and to my dismay, came back without any of his "toys".
One of the enjoyable things over the past couple of summers has been to borrow a car or a motorcycle and "joy-ride." Unfortunately, he trailered everything down to his winter home, and left them there.
However, knowing my friend, I knew it wouldn't be too long before he would find something to bring home. Well...this week while driving by his house, my wife noticed that he had another 57 chevy behind his barn.
On the way home from my parents house, my oldest son and I stopped to check out the latest ride. The car was found in Winchester, Indiana. My friend tells me he actually stopped to look at a 1968 Camaro convertible. The guy wanted $30,000.00 for the Camaro, but my friend began to "shoot the bull" with the guy about his 57 chevys, and the guy said, "Well, I might have one of those for sale too!" The car turned out to be a two-door post.
To make a long story short, the guy called him a day or two later and made my friend an offer. The deal was over in less than 24 hours and my friend owned a 3rd '57.Looking the car over, we found it to be in "decent" shape. The carpet is missing and the floors have been replaced. The front bench has been replaced with buckets, and the headliner is missing.
A Hurst shifter on a Muncie 4 speed sets behind a 327. The car would make a decent "driver", but if you wanted to have a "show car", you would need to get some door panels and do some body work.