Monday, January 16, 2017

E type getting some sunlight for the 1st time in 4 decades. Only 52k on the odometer

The Jag was purchased in 1970 as a gift for his wife, who enjoyed driving the two-seater sports car, until she got pregnant, and it was left in the garage after that, as a couple more kids were added to the family

This E-Type was recently auctioned by H and H Classics near London. It sold for about $98,800. The restoration will probably cost more than the car.

How Checker kept the bills paid and employees busy after the taxi making days were through

Checker remained as a world-class automotive parts supplier for 27 years after the last taxi was produced in July of 1982.

Six months after the car line went down; the Peoples Republic of China called Checker wanting to order 5,000 units per year, indefinitely. Too late.

While Checker had large, medium, small, and automatic presses, the equipment was underutilized. This was recognized by top management and others in automotive supply, and during the mid-Seventies it was seen as an opportunity to expand into the automotive supply market.

By 1976 Checker started running several contracts for General Motors.

* F-frames for Camaro and Firebird, 1976 – 1988
* Chevy Blazer and Suburban tailgates, 1976 – 1992
* Chevy Suburban sills (below the doors), 1976 – 1996
* Chevy Stepside box (front and side panels, tailgates, fenders), 1976 – 1988
* GM bus frames, fenders, & hoods, 1978 – 1990
* Chevy & GMC large truck fenders, 1976 – 1990

GM, G-van rear doors, large and small, 1984 – 1996
G-van hoods, and cowls, 1984 – 1996
G-van roof rails, 1984 – 1996
J-car steering outrigger assemblies, 1984 – 1994
S-10 Blazer tailgates, and cowls, 1986 – 1998
Chevy CK truck tailgates, 1988 – 1998
M-van sliding doors, 1984 – 1992

Bruce Gordon, broke the round the world bike record by 10 days, and on a recumbent

He hit a jaywalking kangaroo.... and seems to have been able to get away from it without a pummeling, as I imagine a roo would be hopping mad at a bicyclist for the assault. The collision did break one of his fingers though.

The previous record was 163 days, he broke that by 10 days

he rode a Bacchetta Corsa on average 117 miles a day, Bruce did the ride solo and unsupported.

Gordon rode through New Zealand, Australia, Greece, Macedonia, Kosovo, Serbia, Bosnia, Croatia, Hungary, the Czech Republic, Germany, Denmark, the Netherlands, Belgium, France, Spain, England, the United States and Canada.

If Guinness World Records accepts his submission, Bruce points out that he'll establish a number of firsts among the small group of globe-girdling record holders: He'll be the first to break the record on a recumbent; the first to break the record going in a East-to-West direction (Time zone changes assist on the number of hours of daylight to bike); and, at 48 years old when he started, he'll be the oldest cyclist to break the record.

90 mile beach, Northern New Zealand, is a public road

That must be unique... how many countries allow any motorist to drive on a beach... for one thing,

then how many treat the beach like a road, not a place to vacation or get some sun and surf?

Ninety-Mile Beach is the fabled strip of sand that stretches from Ahipara to Scott Point, five kilometres south of Cape Maria van Diemen. Truth be told, it is actually 88 kilometres long.

This beach is officially a highway, but is really only suitable for 4WD vehicles and is safe to drive only at specific times of the tides. Rental companies won’t allow their cars on the sand, mostly for safety reasons.

In 1932 the beach was used as the runway for some of the earliest airmail services between Australia and New Zealand. It is sometimes used as an alternative road to State Highway 1 north of Kaitaia

1973 Datsun 240Z from storage to amazing

Scout concept

miniature motors, but a cool display of the designs that used to be

And then I learned that the Tallahassee Car Museum has a room full of outboards!

Outer Banks Center for Wildlife Education

barn find 1965 275 GTS Ferrari

Stuffed away in that barn since 1977 with 63k miles

And the 12 cylinders and rust free body could use a good home 

Sunday, January 15, 2017

Recycled bike forks

INSTEAD OF ADDING yet another bottle-opener to your already overcrowded bike, the Bike Fork Bottle Opener recycles the dropouts or forks of old, dead bikes and turns them into beer bottle-top poppers.

Made by Etsy-er EH84, each opener is unique, although you can specify the wrapping on the handle — you can choose between leather and rope. The results are brutally beautiful, and cost $30 each, which isn’t bad for a hand-crafted implement.

think you'll ever need to escape from a submerged car, or slice off your seatbelt? Cheap cool tool news alert

This tool will NOT break windshields or other windows made of LAMINATED glass. Some vehicles have laminated side windows. On these vehicles the ResQMe will still function on the rear window.

how bad was the gas reformulations due to EPA restrictions, on mpg? Gerald kept track, it was startlingly bad

He bought a 1987 Ford Escort new, and it got 37 mpg
then a couple years went buy and the EPA regulations caused a reformulation,  and his mpg was 24
Then a year after that, a 2nd reformulated fuel was put out, and then he only was getting 19 mpg

Gerald Foye
AAA Westways magazine, letters to the editor, Jan Feb 2012 issue

the story of the Ferris Bueller Ferrari's garage (the glass walls, built over a ravine)

is all in a letter written into the editor of the Garage Style magazine, Fall 2010 issue.

How the garage was built before that became against regs and no isn't something that a builder can do in that city anymore. Building codes were changed, and now we can't have nice things any more.

But in 1985 John Hughes was driving though, and saw it from a bridge, made the acquaintance of the owners, and convinced them to let him crash a car through the back glass wall.

7 cameras were filming the car going out into the canyon, falling 40 feet, but only one caught the entire action, and the film from the other 6 wasn't useful for much at all. 

Toyota USA Automobile Museum in Torrence has an online 360 tour

use this page
or this page if you want more info

Joe became bored quite quickly in retirement, so he started a service getting cars the max money at auction

He collected cars, and restored them, then auctioned them.

Bortz’s collection included six concept cars by 1988, and it was around this time when rumors began circulating of the four 1955 Motorama cars wasting away among the junkyard—the Cadillac Eldorado Brougham Town Car, the Chevrolet Biscayne, and two variants of the Cadillac LaSalle II.

Bortz bought them all and set out to restore them, and once news spread of the collector’s discovery and his passion for these dream cars, his phone began ringing with offers and leads for other concept cars that had escaped destruction. “I was just in the right place at the right time when these cars were beginning to be turned loose.”

Joe certainly has the kind of collection that stokes the flames of envy in other car enthusiasts- the Bonneville Special, the 1957 Chrysler Ghia Falcon, the 1953 Buick Wildcat I, the 1964 Pontiac Banshee, the 1956 Chrysler Plainsman station wagon, 1956 Cadillac Die Valkyrie, and can take them out for a spin.

Then he needed something to do, so he put his experience to work

Bortz acts as a concierge for car owners who are too busy or don’t feel educated enough to find the best venue to sell their car.

“The timing seemed to be right,” Bortz said. “I had retired six years ago and I had 50 years of buying and selling to only develop the Bortz Auto Collection. My hobby business has now evolved and we are assisting in the sale of collector cars for the single-car collector, an owner of a larger collection, the widow and children of collectors and also estate attorneys.”

For cars that do not sell on the internet, or for more high-end cars consigned to Take Your Car to Auction, Bortz progresses to a third approach.

“The third level is always to consider taking a car to a live auction. In reference to the latter, obviously many items have to be taken under consideration, such as the return on investment, considering the costs of doing the sale, what would be the best live auction to match up with the type of car that you have.”

Bortz said he uses his experience selling cars at live auctions to maximize the bidding action on that car.

“I know what to ask for at particular auctions, the best times to sell a car,” Bortz said. “I not only know how to pick a good auction, but their best auction for that car.”

behind the scenes of the Hartung collection going to auction

1919 Boston to San Fransisco and Return via Lincoln Highway.. Goodyears pioneering work of trucking expeditions to get roads made, and goods transported by trucks and tires, instead of railways

I don't recall seeing a film from this long ago with such a great variety of trucks, flatbeds, busses, and heavy haulers

I posted about the expedition

633 Squadron (thanks Steve!)

In this classic war actioner based on a true story, Cliff Robertson plays Roy Grant, a combat-weary pilot whose R.A.F. squadron is ordered to destroy a Nazi rocket fuel plant tucked deep inside a Norwegian fjord. The bomb run is a logistical nightmare because the planes must run a gauntlet of anti-aircraft batteries before reaching their target.

 The film's scenario and characters were drawn from a novel by Frederick E. Smith published in 1956, which itself drew on several real Royal Air Force operations.

The original idea was to build a wooden bomber with no guns, but they said build a prototype to shut them up. Of course the prototype outran the Spitfire!

When the Norwegian resistance leader, Royal Norwegian Navy Lieutenant Erik Bergman, travels to Great Britain to report the location of a German V-2 rocket fuel plant, the Royal Air Force's No. 633 Squadron is assigned to destroy it. The squadron is led by Wing Commander Roy Grant, an ex-Eagle Squadron pilot (an American serving in the RAF before the US entered the war).

The plant is in a seemingly impregnable location beneath an overhanging cliff at the end of a long, narrow fjord lined with numerous anti-aircraft guns. The only way to destroy the plant is by collapsing the cliff on top of it, a job for 633 Squadron's fast and manoeuvrable de Havilland Mosquitos. The squadron trains in Scotland, where there are narrow glens similar to the fjord.

They used real Mosquitos, and by the way Cliff Robertson owned a Spitfire!

do they invert the ratio of normal to handicap parking spots

at the bingo hall?
the wheelchair sales business?
at the retirement home?
the prosthetics fitting wing at the hospital?

After all, a number are marked off for the disabled in most parking lots according to the predicted number that will be needed by wheelchair users and people with busted legs or feet... so, wouldn't the inverse be legit at a hospital?

Hemi in a Lancer story

 East Bay Salvage placed the wreck of a ’67 Coronet Hemi RT that had gone end-over-end outside their fence. The story I got was this guy returned from Vietnam, got the car out of storage, got loaded celebrating and left a curved embankment east of Brandon at some fantastic speed and the car went airborne, then came down on it’s nose and continued to roll.

I finally made a deal for the engine “as-is” for $600.  A buddy had some dealings with Garlits, so we loaded it up and took it over to his home and shop in Seffner. The air cleaner and one valve cover were crushed, both exhaust manifolds were broken and on the drivers side, a small hole had been poked in the block into a water jacket.

 Pat Garlits met us in the circular driveway of their home telling us Don had just gotten back from the west coast and had gone to bed. My friend Art started telling her this was an engine he’d talked to Don about a week ago and surprise, up walks Don. He really looked like he hadn’t slept in a week but the moment he saw the engine, he had all kinds of energy. I was introduced and he looked it over, then told us to back the trailer into one of the shop stalls, it was cleaner than a hospital, but his office looked like those hoarders shows on TV, full of memorabilia and magazines and books.

They spent time pulling it down and magna-fluxing it which showed up the hole which was easily welded. He called me at work and told me it would be”about” $400 to go through it and of course, I agreed. I picked up new mounts and when I put it in, it actually bolted up. Don hooked me up with a place out in CA called S and S Headers and they fabricated a set for me. I got a radiator from a 59 Imperial we had at the junk yard I worked at part time and it did the trick. I went to hook up the shift cable and realized it wouldn’t work with the ’57’s pushbuttons and ended up buying a Mustang shifter which worked fine.

The first week on the road I gernaded the stock rear end and realized the brakes were going to kill me. I went and bought the rear end from the Coronet. With their size and a single pot master cylinder, if I hit the brakes hard, they locked right up, so I got the spindles and brakes from the Imperial and put them on with new Grey-Rock linings.

Thanks Bob!

The N66 optional SS wheels that were available on the SS Camaro. Cancelled Dec 68 with only 314 units sold.

They were included when you ordered either a SS Chevelle, SS El Camino, SS Nova

sometimes, I look at the numbers comparing stock and race versions of a car, and wonder why the stock one had more parts, but accomplished less. Example, 1969 Z 28 with the 302

Horsepower and torque of a Z/28 302 engine make for a customer, with cross ram dual quads?
377 horsepower at 6000 rpm and 355 ft.lbs torque at 4500 rpm

What about one of the Z/28s that raced in the 1969 Trans Am series?
 486HP with a single 4 BBL

Only 37 Camaros were built with the AS4 - Rear Shoulder Belts option

Saturday, January 14, 2017

BF Goodrich was so sure the Radial T/A was the most capable tire made, they put the street tire to the test in the 1970 and 71 SCCA Trans Am races, and won while competing against stickier racing compound tires, and Larry Dent won his class at Watkins Glen in 71. They then called his car the Tirebird

Dan at Hemmings Blog did an article in 2010:
     I’m not sure anybody has a straight story on how many Tirebirds were built by Jerry Titus and Terry Godsall to promote and race on the new B.F.Goodrich radials in 1970. Add in the fact that Goodrich wanted Titus to build several replicas for further promotional purposes

This was the third of three cars built by TG Racing for the 1970 Trans Am season. Titus’ partner Terry Godsall secured BF Goodrich sponsorship for the team at the end of the 1970 season. The team convinced the SCCA to allow this car to run with a Chevy engine instead of the problematic Pontiac engine base on the fact that Canadian Firebirds were delivered with Chevy engines.

This car was entered in the 1971 Daytona 24 hours as a Firebird and then was converted to Camaro body work in time for Sebring.

before and after, a 1964 1/2 Pace Car Mustang

1917 Ford Motor Company postcard selection from a set of 25 souvenir cards

Thanks BT!