Tuesday, May 31, 2005

Idiots Rule.

Further evidence that not all old cars are cool.
Brand new carpet, new door panels and new back seat with a new chrome chain steering wheel, new chrome dash componets, red skull shifter new seat covers,new dash cover,

this Nova is lowered in the rear for that badd ass look with complete RED NEON underbody kit, brand new $600.00 Jensen CD Stereo with RED sony Explode speakers.

you will need the loud stereo to hear over the lake pipes! I WILL NOT BE RESONSIBLE FOR NEIGHBORS BEING PEEED OFF AT YOU!

and a new 50 differnt sounds horn with PA system! ahoogggaaaaaaaa & "get out a my way" to name a few!

Done up WEST COAST Custom Style with all the decals and CUSTOM CAR CULTURE extras, skulls, wrench cross bones, scroll work, chrome dummy spots, wind deflectors, bullets, maltese crosses... the NOVA SS is step back to the cool days... its just plain SICK!

Custom car culture wind deflectors. Makes me embarassed to be alive.

Everything you love, everything meaningful with depth and history, all passionate authentic experiences will be appropriated, mishandled, watered down, cheapened, repackaged, marketed and sold to the people you hate.

Friday, May 27, 2005

The New Yorker of Obsessive Garages

Would you buy a carburator from this man?

After gut wrenching anticipation, I can report that American Garages (special edition of Garage Life) has arrived and did not disappoint. Sure, I wish the garage was a bit more cogent. And a fresh shave and haircut would have been a good idea. If I had more than an hour notice, I would have cleaned more than I did. Considering what it looks like in the photos, I will leave the reader to wonder how much an hour really helped. Once Kouki (the editor of Garage Life) arrived, he would not let me do so much as pick up a washer from the floor as it might wreck the 'typical American garage' look. (Links 1, 2, 3, 4)

To say I am curious as to what the magazine says would be a dramatic understatement.

Yes, that is a cobweb hanging down. And a sway bar. And the socket organization project was in full swing. And a rare wormy chestnut plant table sitting on the welding table.

Almost more than can be processed, the garage is, admittedly, quite dense. There are layers and layers of stuff packed in to every nook. Almost every day I find something really cool that I forgot I had.

The Ford Country Squire taillight is looking distinctive and fantastic. Not surprisingly, the hood is up on the Mercedes 190b. The photo of the interior of my house looks much better than it actually looks. The miracles of photography and a little Japanese text.

How Things Got Done

I am powerless over buying additional old copies of Science And Mechanics, Mechanix Illustrated, Popular Mechanics, Popular Science, et al. The shelf gets deeper and deeper of these dusty gems. Flipping through the old issues, you snicker at the ridiculous inventions that look to make life more complicated and wonder what rubes thought that music made corn grow faster, but every time you hit something really cool that makes complete and total sense that was never implemented. Like parachuted escape pods for jet airliners. The best covers from my collection are on my Flickr account.

Following the Garage Life article, my garage was actually looking pretty damn tidy. Packed, not room for a toothpick or postage stamp, but pretty sound. Within just a few short minutes of looking, I could find most anything.

Sweet Mercy!

For about 12 years I have been garage saling every weekend that it is feasible. I have garage saled in Boston and Pinckneyville. I have gone to swapmeets in Dallas and Tokyo. I have shopped the boot sales of London and bought stuff at Florida estate sales. Over the years, I have bought a few cars but never anything really good. And from the look of the 1930 Ford Model A Pickup, some would say I still haven't. But, coming across a treasure chest like this - that is the stuff of dreams. It may as well say "gold doubloons" on top.

Endangered Animals of the San Fernando Valley

Protecting the booty, the backyard was filled with desert tortoises. Residents for over 25 years with a new batch every spring. The only possible reason that the desert tortoise is still considered endangered is there has not been a complete inventory of the illegal San Fernando Valley backyard desert tortoises.

Standard 6750 Square Foot SFV Post-War Tract Home Lot (a few of the square foots did not have Model A parts)

Despite the ugly, homemade space age lamp that looks like a prop for a high school Barbarella production, the rest of this stuff is, you know, real nice stuff. Real grade A junk! A few hoods, a grill shell, an oil pan, a transmission case and a visor! The garage had a ton of stuff as well. Stuff in the side yard. Another shed full of wheels. I brought a pick-up truck load home and there is at least another three loads. All marked from when he bought them at swap meets in the 70's. $1 for motor mounts. $5 for a gas pedal. $3 for a 30/31 front fender. Yeah, prices have hardly changed at all.

This junk is actually a pile of really good stuff! A pair of window frames, a 30/31 front fender, wheels, a rear end, etc. Good stuff!

A Wonderful Problem to Have

How quickly good fortune turns to shit! Don't get me wrong, there is no mess that would make me happier, but will the garage ever stay tidy?

Wednesday, May 25, 2005

The Mini Cleaner!

Well! Finally a knee-slapper of an invention to remove those pesky crumbs from the table between courses. And what fun! Needless to say, this charming Japanese invention is as elegant as it is ridiculous. Those little brushes really do work and fills the backseat right up. But, there is no facility to get the debris out of the backseat. Clearly, I need the Mini Cleaner Cleaner.

The Crushing March of Progress

The color change of the 76 Ball is just one more step to absolute sameness for gas stations. Gone are the days of charming regionals and cheap ass give-aways from Sinclair and the gas station with the skunk. And the new red/blue ball is nowhere near as delightfully brash as the orange and blue that it is replacing.

The pain of the 76 Ball color change is somewhat mitigated if you happen to see the sign changing in progress AND if you can convince the fellas that maybe they didn't need those two sign faces. Only one here? Coop has the other.

Bubble top custom Mercedes! Deee-Luxe!

Hmmm... Perhaps I shouldn't have ordered a new Webasto sunroof for the Mercedes 190b after all. A little trimming, some time with a heat gun and a roll of weatherstripping...

The day before yesterday, I replaced the blower motor on the 1987 Mercedes 300TD. It was not that bad considering you need to remove the windshield wiper assembly and handful of rotting rubber sound and water sealing components. No wonder it is no longer sealed.

Replaced the water pump on the 1961 Mercedes 190b yesterday. The Mercedes coolant hose/thermostat system is absolutely the craziest mix of pipes, a copper thermostat housing and about 10 short pieces of hose to get it all connected to one another. The water pump was making more noise than all other engine noises combined.

Wednesday, May 18, 2005

It's not that I want more garage space, it's my little cars that want the room! My garage saling partner Mike bought a stack of Little Golden Books last weekend. Garage saling together works out pretty good as our interests have few overlaps, as his Golden Book collection satisfies my interest in Golden Books. I like to go over, flip through them and then leave unencumbered. And, when something like the story of sad sack Gabriel the busted up Model T comes along, he just gives it to me! Just like that!

Poor, lowly Gabriel actually looks better than many of the cars I have purchased. Doors sagged? I should be so lucky to have doors to sag!

Tuesday, May 17, 2005

The Lind, Washington Combine Demolition Derby!

I am a sucker for specialized equipment powered by an internal combustion engine destroying another piece of specialized equipment powered by an internal combustion engine. Robot wars? Feh. Combine wars! That makes sense! With the giant combine harvester death screw on the front, it is perfectly suited to eviscerate the competition by removing the rear wheels - a fate already suffered by the John Deere on the right. Despite all the fame and glory, the winners of the Combine Demolition Derby are still down to earth people that are not afraid to mug it up for the camera.

Unfortunately, there are no photographs of the grain truck races. And don't try to enter a half ton grain box cheater truck. That possiblity has already been addressed.

Wednesday, May 04, 2005

My feelings for Snap-On are unambiguous.

Socket Project Complete!

Often in the background for other projects, the long delayed socket re-organization and rationalization is complete. Even though Hooptyrides does not invest in new tools, we have built quite a collection. When you need a 15/32" socket, there is really nothing like having the right tool for the job. Now, to have three 15/32" sockets, that is harder to justify. Over at Flickr,I tagged the 3/8" drawer for clarity.

The 1965 Ford Country Squire is turning out fantastic. Not for the meek.

Tuesday, May 03, 2005

Newest Hooptyride! Lilliputian Midget Boattail Kiddie Ride!

In keeping with the character of Hooptyrides, the newest addition to the fleet is predictably sun bleached. The longer I look at this little charmer, the more taken I am with it. The rear wheels are original and made of cast aluminum! The steering appears to have been functional at one time but now the steering wheel just spins. The grill is impossibly cool and the side exhaust is knee slapping funny. Frankly, I pictured hanging this on the garage wall, but upon arrival it appears to be a little bigger than I remembered. Of course, when it comes to fitting another thing in my garage even a nail file looks menacingly large.

Sunday, May 01, 2005

The Kawasaki is sold and could not have gone to a better home. Look at Jeff's fleet! I am proud to have once again added a new low point to somebody else's collection. With the exception of the Kawasaki, all those scooters look great! I have every confidence that the Kawasaki will be worthy in no time.