When You Just have to have that Classic/Muscle Car?…Think Small!!!!

This is a repeat – it got lost in the move to the new domain – I had to add it back to the archives so I could refer to it in my up and coming post on Model Cars.

I should throw “collecting” in the title of this blog (but it’s really long enough), because, although it’s about 2.5 months old, I have mentioned collecting a bunch of times.  But really that is part of hobby as well.

Of course if I were to list all the cars I’d love collect, it would be fairly long and in reality (my reality) unaffordable..unless you are Jay Leno… I hate that guy.  Ok..I don’t hate him…not really..the green-eyed monster made me say that.

Since I’m not as funny as Jay and I have to work for a living….what?…..ok..ok….I’m sure Jay works very hard…I guess…it’s tough reading funny newpaper clips….ok…Sorry Jay, I have “substituted” this alternative method of obtaining the cars I’d love to own.

You all figured it out yet?  I’m talking about models, scale diecast replicas.  There is an entire industry out there that produces, imports and markets these items.  Some of them are extremely well done.

Here are some shots of my collection.  I’m concentrating on the Mustangs and Corvettes in the sizes  1/18 or 1/24 scale.

These are a few of Mustangs

The Mustangs

And these are a few of the Corvettes.

The Corvettes
A Few of the Vettes

Most of these are Danbury Mint  and GMP pieces, I do like what they produce, lots of details and they are affordable (around $100.00 each).

Here is a few shots of the 1967 GT 350.

GMP 1967 GT350 Interior
Ford GT350
GMP Mustang GT350 Engine compartment

The Franklin mint produces cars, Greenleaf, Motormint, just to name a few.

It’s fun and affordable and they do increase in value.  It’s gotten so popular that even the mainstream car magazines like Hemmings (they normally have at least one article in every Motor News edition), Mustang Monthly and Corvette magazine have articles that discuss this portion of the hobby and even rate the quality of individual brands and their offerings.

If you collect already or want to get started drop a comment to this post. Toss in some pic as well.

Thanks for reading.


The Car Differential

Sometimes we forget how things evolved when it comes to the functioning of our cars.  Sometimes to understand how they work its helpful to go back in time and view how the problem was solved.

Take for instance this 1937 GM film on how to solve cornering.

Thanks for reading.


Mopar Door Panel Project – The LeBaron

Some time ago I wrote about repairing my 1984 Corvettes door panel.  The panel its self was not well made … read “cheap” and didn’t stand up well to time/use.  Unfortunately, I can’t say there was any improvement in “quality” of the door panels in my 2007 Vette.  But this project isn’t a Corvette door panel,  but my son’s Chrysler LeBaron.

The LeBaron is 1990’s car and the door panels are 1990’s cheap, no nice way to say that.  This quick project was didn’t start out about the door panel, other than we had to take it off to check the multiple window control switch.  The window controls were part of a plastic insert that also has the remote control for the drivers’ side mirror poked through it.  It stays put, normally by 3 prongs that push into “V” clips that are on stand-a-lone braces that are mounted on the door panel directly – but not well done.

Since the insert has slid down over the past few months, it seemed that either driving vibrations and/or normal door operations, so while we are in there we’d push the prong back in.  Seemed simple enough.

The back of the panel a fiber board/plastic composite – not really fiberglass but similar and it’s pretty sturdy.

Back side of the door panel.

Back side of the door panel.

Here you can see the brackets I mentioned above.  However, the way in which the bracket are attached to the board is meant to last forever.  They are held together with bits of glue in holes along the edges of the bracket.  In the heat of Arizona and the great condition our roads are in (tongue in cheek) this type of connection is not ideal.

Here you can see the glue and at the back of the bracket and that is oozed out into the holes.

Here you can see the glue  the back of the bracket and that is oozed out into the holes.

This image below is the results of the glue pulling off – separating from the fiber board.

Part clue - Part fiber board. This was laying at the bottom of the door panel

Part clue – Part fiber board. This was laying at the bottom of the door panel

I’ll finish this up in the next post.

Thanks for reading.


The Viper

I re-posted a discussion on “Would You Take A Viper Over A ZR1?” (http://wp.me/pKHNM-1nH).  To me there is really no discussion to be had.  There is absolutely no way I’d select a Dodge Viper for a ZR1.  Heck, there’s no way I’d select a Viper over any Corvette (even the ugly, big butted C5’s).  Yup, even over the horse power difference.

It is mainly the design.  The Viper looks like the it’s either broken in the middle or was two cars shoved together.    Check this out?


So here ya go  – the curve of the hood and rake of the windshield make he look “bent” at the vertical line drawn on the fender.  The bump where the side exhaust starts  the bent look.  The door is hinged inside what would normally be a fender brake cooling vent.  Then notice the back-end – it looks familiar, yes like a Mazda.   It really looks like a sports car got been by shoving a Mazda Miata in its trunk.

Now take a look at a 1992 Corvette ZR1.


Let rake in the windshield and the brake vents are as they should be!!!  Great lines!!!

Collector for a 1992 Viper vs. the  1992 ZR1 is a little one sided with the Viper about $15k more than the Vette, so for investment purposes the Vipers the one to own.

Your thoughts?

Thanks for reading.




Drive By 1938 Chrysler Royal

Here is another drive by.  As you know these are in fact drive by – but shooting with a camera!!!!

We saw this on near down town Tucson, Az.


She needs a little work but it seems the owner drives it.  I love the suicide door and the 9 windows!!

The Chrysler Royal was an automobile produced by the Chrysler division of the Chrysler Corporation between 1937 to 1942 and 1946 to 1950. The Royal represented the entry-level Chrysler during its production,[1] making it the most affordable Chrysler model. The Royal was replaced at the end of 1950 model year by the Chrysler Windsor.

Own one of these?  Drop me a note.

Thanks for reading.



Big Dog Garage: 1953 Chevy Wagon

Big Dog Garage: 1953 Chevy Wagon.


Wednesday, November 7, 2012

1953 Chevy Wagon

This 1953 Chevy Wagon was bought new by my Grandfather as a delivery wagon for his grocery store.  My Uncle and Cousin had restored and maintained it until it was passed on to me.  This is the actual first car I remember riding in as a toddler.  I was fascinated by the chrome on the dash, and have been a car nut ever since.

After a lot of thought and conversations, I have decided what direction to go with the restoration of the Wagon.  At first, I wanted to preserve the original state of the car, but if I did that, it would be dangerous to drive in today’s traffic.  In 1953, there were no seat-belts and few other safety devices.  I really would like to enjoy the car as it was meant to be…. driving it as much as possible.  I would love to build it with a Big Block, but I am realistic so I plan to install the original Corvette engine and transmission from the ’78 Vette.  I also want to install disc brakes all around with radial tires.  Of course there is creature comforts like air conditioning I want to install.  I will keep the original look of the car with a few exceptions like wheels and over-sized tires.


Tucson Classic Car Show Mustang Row


This was early dawn and a few of us early birds already lined up.

It was a great day. Over 400 cars!!!  I had the good look to be backed up to the Corvette Class row and right behind me was a friend with his BRAND NEW Carbon Grand Sport (see it in the other posts).

No trophies today, but a great time and a lot of beautiful cars.



Spec Clutches


This is the Clutch I’ve added to my Corvette.
I have the stage III
check out video:


07 Corvette – When a good clutch goes bad!

Few post back I mentioned the issues with being able to shift the C6 into reverse and then generally the shift began to get worse.  Additionally the clutch fluid would become low.

As most Corvette owners know, the C6 has a separate hydraulic clutch.  I had the fluid flushed numerous times and eventually we found a small leak at the clutch slave cylinder.

Replaced the cylinder and stopped the leak.  This stopped the fluid usage and shifting improved, but only slightly.

Eventually it began getting much worse.  With the ignition on the car would not go into reverse at all.  The only way to get it into reverse was to turn the car off, put the that trans in reverse and start the car. Even then, it would sometimes kick itself out of gear when started   Then highway shifting began slipping and RPM when up.

I do auto cross the car and I guess some spirited street driving.  Here is what my clutch and flywheel now look like, yes… I saved them!!!



Clutch 2


Those shiny rivets – not a good thing!!!!

The Flywheel, interesting coloration, don’t you think?



Yes it was time for a replacement.


What was the replacement?

That is coming up next.

Thanks for reading.





Mustang II Daries 4

Now for Some Tunes

My car came with the standard AM radio, but around here, there aren’t any music stations on AM, just talk shows, so I needed to upgrade.
I wanted a 70s look and feel, so I bought a working 8-track AM/FM from another Mustang II owner. I also bought a new antenna off eBay because the one I had was all rusty.
My dad and brother weren’t available to help on this project and back then I wasn’t confident enough to attempt it myself, so I took everything to Best Buy and asked if they could do it. You can imagine their reaction when I showed up with a 77 Mustang and an 8-track player and one in-dash speaker! But they were up to the challenge (and promised to be careful) and they did an awesome job. Looking back, I can’t believe I want to BEST BUY, but it all turned out OK. Whew!
Eventually I was able to track down on eBay a sealed Ford demo 8-track from 1977 that came with the new models for that year that showed people how 8-tracks worked. It’s a neat piece to have with the radio.
Update: The one speaker in the dash has started to go out on me, so I’m hoping to replace it this summer (2010). I’ll try this project myself, so if you have any tips for me, let me know!