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Technical Drawing a line in the sand

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by porknbeaner, Jun 14, 2014.

  1. partsdawg
    Joined: Feb 12, 2006
    Posts: 2,774

    from Minnesota

    I don't like boxes.
    A traditional car "has" to have this or that,"has" to look a certain way,etc etc.
    I think what has happened is that the best looking vehicles of a time period have over the years become the standard that re-creators build their cars to appear as.I respect that.
    At the same time if you look at any of the little magazines from the mid to late 50's there were many hot rods built with engines other than flatheads,drivetrains from other donors.Kudos also to those who didnt follow the norm. A vehicle built to the builders idea of what they want gets points from me as opposed to building a car as they are told it should be.
    Many of the items used in a traditional styled build simply were not available 'back in the day'.
    Just a guess but as many of the OG builders thought outside the box had radial tires,alternators or even seat belts been common these guys would have used them.Is a roadster built in 1958 using a fuel injected 283 with a 4-speed out of a '57 Corvette less traditional than a roadster built at the same time with a flattie and 3-speed? One was built with a eye to the future,the other with a nod to the past.
    I guess my line is wavy.Whatever floats your boat.
    Good conversation going on here.Enjoy following it.
    Model T1 likes this.
  2. AZAV8
    Joined: May 3, 2005
    Posts: 997

    from Tucson, AZ

    I'm in squirrel's camp. It depends on what I'm building. The current project, the '48 F1 pickup fits the HAMB "traditional" definition to start with; but it deviates from there since I'm using one of Elpolacko's Dakota IFS kits on the front and a diesel will power this truck. I know the power plant is non-traditional but this will be my daily driver and for personal reasons, the diesel will stay the choice. When I'm working on the '29 RPU its all traditional right up to the flathead V8 and beyond. I'll use a Brookville body, because steel originals are hard to find that fit my beer pocketbook and poor sheet metal skills. Plus its on my bucket list to finish.

    To me if it was built after about 1957 its ugly, with a few exceptions. But then it all comes down to what do YOU want in YOUR car and HOW traditional you want it to be or can afford. I've been fighting this "disease" since I was 14 for well over 50 years. I know what traditional is and is not; but I will still build it my way and I won't condemn you for your choices. I might offer a suggestion of how I would have done it but that's all. Most of this hot rod game is building and driving what you like and can afford to build.
  3. Model T1
    Joined: May 11, 2012
    Posts: 3,309

    Model T1

    Still a great thread. Lots of feeling going into this one. I hate to admit it, out of the five old cars I have left only one really meets the HAMB standards. I didn't belong to the HAMB or even knew what a computer was when my car hobbys began so did what many early rodders did. I used what I could afford, what I found at swap meets and junk yards, what was traditional for that time period. Yes that included disc brakes and later engines. I'm too old, too broke, and too lazy to change all of that and my cars are fairly safe and fun to drive as is. I broke the line!
    My 1939 Ford deluxe coupe has a 1957 SBC and powerglide along with the 57 rear and springs. Up front is 1954 Chevy brakes still using the original 1939 Ford master. Wheels are original Fenton mags with bias tires. Inside are early Dodge buckets and an unknown small bench seat that used to sit three rugrats. All guages and trim are still original minus the rear deck handle and trim. Drove it to the first Street Rod Nats near Peoria, Illinois. Sadly it hasn't been driven for years. But with a modern dual master, new lines and repair I'd be happy to drive it again as is.
    Then my line would not be so wavy in the Florida sugar sand.
  4. dontlifttoshift
    Joined: Sep 17, 2005
    Posts: 651


    I said it last time Beaner. For me, traditional is a build style, not a life style.

    Happy Birthday, by the way.
  5. In a perfect world ever single members ideas of what is and what is not except-able was the same we wouldn't be having this discussion.

    As Beano calls it the line in the sand, can become blurred with the passage of time and some preconceived also change.

    I have enjoyed reading ALL the reply's,I agree with most and the other reply's I respect their input.

    I am also impressed with how this thread has for the most part stayed on track. HRP
    Last edited: Jun 20, 2014
  6. Having a "traditional" car isn't at all like being pregnant. With pregnancy it's either you are or you aren't there's no such thing as being a "little pregnant" is there? and there's no way to be mostly pregnant either.

    A traditional "look" is not a traditional build. Its something else - maybe cool as hell and extremely well built but something else. Mostly traditional isn't enough for that prestigious classification.

    I really don't see a grey area here at all on what designates it. Of course there are era differences, for example looking at a car built and untouched since 1948 would be different than an equal from 1963.

    Build what you want, how you want to make yourself happy. But if having your ride called traditional is what you want and makes you happy then build it that way
  7. BurnoutNova
    Joined: Mar 30, 2011
    Posts: 135

    from USA

    I agree with most of you guys on what traditional is... there is a definite line in the sand and I think alot of people choose what to consider traditional or not. Personally, I think it is tough to really be 100% traditional anymore. I'm talking every nut and bolt, no mig welds, bias plys, drum brakes, no modern anything. I seem to like a blend of traditional appearing, but some modern stuff on the inside (like moly piston rings, newer cam grinds, electronic ignition, etc)

    I am building my 55 chevy right now. I had a vision of doing it mostly traditional, using the parts I had. The engine appears to be an early 283 or 327. It has an original 63 Vette intake, a set of 461x camel hump heads, and ram horn manifolds. However, the block is a 1969 350, with all new stuff (comp cam, moly rings, etc). I also decided to use a dual reservoir master cylinder, an alternator instead of a generator, disc brakes (since you cant see them anyway) an aluminum radiator (painted black of course) and a modern wiring harness with blade type fuses. I think it is a good combo of new and old, and even a picky traditional hot rodder can appreciate some of the parts on there.
    Model T1 likes this.
  8. Thanks I am now officially old by traditional standards, but by boomer standards I got ten years to go yet. ;)

    By the way if traditional were a lifestyle I would be so screwed, I have never fit in anywhere.
    Model T1 likes this.
  9. BamaMav
    Joined: Jun 19, 2011
    Posts: 4,577

    from Berry, AL

    Hey I resemble those old rodders, I seem to almost always be broke! I guess I'm more traditional than I thought I was! :)
    Model T1 likes this.
  10. AZAV8
    Joined: May 3, 2005
    Posts: 997

    from Tucson, AZ

    The line in the sand is blurred for many reasons, one of them is safety. Traditional rods, when built years ago, had a single chamber master cylinder and one circuit connecting all four wheels. We know better now, so dual chamber master cylinders with two circuits is the standard for safety reasons. We've upgraded our cars to be safe. Now you wouldn't build it with a "traditional" single chamber, brake circuit brake system because it's NOT safe. Hot rod builders changed their cars not just for performance, but for safety, installing better brakes, etc. We do the same thing now.

    Don't be so dogmatic about being "traditional" that you can't see the forest for the trees. Build your car to be safe not just traditional.

    My F1 with Elpolacko's Dakota IFS has had the front brakes upgraded from even the Dakota disk brakes and single piston calipers. I've installed Dodge D150 rotors which are bigger diameter and thickness and installed Wilwood D52 dual piston calipers on custom brackets all in the name of giving myself the best brakes up front as possible. "Traditional", not by some HAMBers definition but I don't care because I want a safe truck that has a good ride and can stop well. Will the truck look traditional, yes. Will my wife want to ride in it, yes, because it will ride nice and soft on her bad back and not like a truck. Be a real hot rod builder and build it for performance and safety.
    Model T1 likes this.
  11. squirrel
    Joined: Sep 23, 2004
    Posts: 47,124


    There have been a lot of improvements in cars over the years, both for safety and performance. it seems everyone has their own comfort level...I personally don't mind single chamber master cylinders, I have a lot of experience with them, and I have some understanding of what the risk is with them (and it has a lot to do with maintenance). Seat belts, tires, glass, upholstery, suspension, all play into safety...some guys get hung up on some aspects of it, while ignoring others. It's interesting to observe what others think is important.
  12. AZAV8
    Joined: May 3, 2005
    Posts: 997

    from Tucson, AZ

    What you say is true; however, not everyone has your skill and/or experience to properly maintain a single chamber master cylinder brake system. Federal regulations forced the manufacturers into adding a lot of safety features into their products. We need to have the smarts to know what is necessary for our projects and what is not.
    Model T1 likes this.
  13. jetnow1
    Joined: Jan 30, 2008
    Posts: 1,637

    from CT
    1. A-D Truckers

    Single master cyl may be good with proper maintenance, but with the number of rotten brake lines due to the new liquid salt mix DOT is using here I will install a dual on my truck.

    I feel if you are building an open wheel/exposed engine type car then the little details are
    important, but if it is a full body vehicle with the hood closed not so much. I am putting in
    a late 70's 350, cause I got it cheap. Traditional no but rebuilding my 327 would be a lot
    more money- overbore etc. Of course using what you have or get cheap is traditional too!
    I do draw the line on using recent issue wheels that look more
    at home on a Honda with a fart can muffler!
    Model T1 likes this.
  14. Model T1
    Joined: May 11, 2012
    Posts: 3,309

    Model T1

    I keep drawing a new line in the sand and the wind covers it up! Sort of like writing I LOVE SUE at the beach and the tide comes in. Since my wife's name is Dollie I suppose that's a good thing!
    Every day our line changes with progress. Yes it would be great to own a real traditional mint car. But that safety thing, common sense, and money come into play. For most the line will always wiggle.
    By the way HAPPY BIRTHDAY Beaner. Keep playing in your sandbox.
    hendelec likes this.
  15. ridenlow559
    Joined: Mar 6, 2011
    Posts: 37


    I agree with the safety point of view. But don't get me wrong staying traditional would be bad ass. But I feel as long as the builds are done with good taste. And original parts and sheet metal are used where there supposed to. And not thrown together like a $#& rod if you know what I mean. Then I think most of us are on the same page here. I see a lot of threads on here where mustang II, and 700R4's and S-10 4x4 rear end swaps are used. Technically that's not traditional. But It seems to be one of those lines that is ok with some people. Because it's what's is currently being used to replace and make these classics run better. Same thing with disc brakes. If some wants to upgrade to disc brakes I say go ahead. Heck it might safe their lives one day. Just my 2 cents. The Hamb is our tradition.


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  16. Pewsplace
    Joined: Feb 10, 2007
    Posts: 2,782


    With all do respect to the originator of this thread, drawing a line in the sand (dirt) in my era meant a challenge to the other guy to cross it, and when he did, I would hit him (or at least try). To put rules on what is traditional certainly doesn't qualify as a tough guy attitude, but rather a conscious effort to guide someone to build a traditional style hot rod. You can see young guys researching old magazines to see how they were built in various periods of history and I have seen some really outstanding examples of their interpretation of the period. Most of us are quick to point out alternators rather than generators, fake Buick drums, fake Kinmonts and a host of other "not period correct" items some people use in their "period perfect" build style. I don't find that offensive as he/she is building a car that they think is what they like. It has always been that way in my 60 years of building hot rods. Build what you like and don't concern yourself what some else thinks of your style.

    SO-CAL Speed Shop can be credited with the resurgence of pre-war styles with a modern touch. Hollywood Hot Rods tag line is "Respect Tradition". Troy builds some really great hot rods with his personal style that will go down in history. Styles today will be someones traditional style tomorrow. The HAMB has quite a mixture of styles being shown in some of the threads. I find all of them interesting and really enjoy the HAMB talent that takes the time to submit technical articles for all of us to enjoy. Keep them coming no matter what your interpretation of Traditional might be. Someone will correct you - but it won't be me.
  17. tfeverfred
    Joined: Nov 11, 2006
    Posts: 15,793


  18. I have read this whole thread ( twice ), and have held off replying as long as I could. I think that alot of the angst associated with this discussion centers around the labels used. There is a difference between a "traditional" hotrod, an "era correct" hotrod, a " 100% period perfect" hotrod, and an OG "survivor" hotrod. In my mind, except for the survivor car, anything else is an approximation, in one person's mind, of an original hotrod. The differences are in how far is the builder willing to go to realize that ideal. If the 100% car uses NOTHING but parts made before a certain date, and the "era correct" car uses parts ( maybe original, maybe reproduction ) that would have been available at a certain period in time, then what does the "traditional" label mean? For me, a traditional hotrod is one that respects the history of our hobby. To build to a "tradition", one has to understand what those traditions are. A car built by someone who truly "gets it" will be vastly different than one built by Johnny Ratrod.

    Is my car going to fall into any of the above categories? I don't know, nor do I really care. I wasn't around back in the day to see how it really was, and neither were most of the people on the HAMB, so we build to what we think it might have been like. I have been working to remove/improve the parts of my car that don't satisfy my inner voice. The one that tells me what is cool and what isn't. I chose an early sixties build style for my car, and I try to stick to it, or what I think it is. There are some glaring deviations from the theme, but as long as none of them slap me in the face when I'm out DRIVING it, I can live with them for now. My line in the sand is straight as an arrow...if it scratches that itch that made me want a real hotrod in the first place, I'm good with it.
    Hitchhiker likes this.
  19. 50Fraud
    Joined: May 6, 2001
    Posts: 9,724


    I decided how I thought most car stuff looked best sometime between 1955 and 1965, and I haven't changed my mind a lot since then. I generally make my cars according to those old decisions, but if there's clearly better newer stuff I don't have a problem using it.
  20. 57countrysedan
    Joined: Oct 28, 2012
    Posts: 370

    from NY

    Good question and love seeing everyones answers. Since I'm not a builder i guess my answer doesnt have much weight but it is my opinion. Love seeing traditional cars but i also love seeing an ls motor in just about anything! Think its cool to see different takes on things. My car is a 4 door wagon with a 460 in it. Traditional my no stretch. But I've always viewed hot rodding as making the best of wats available. Im sure back in the day the guys wouldve shoved a 6.0 in their rides with out a second thought. Obviously they didnt have that so if ur trying to build a "as it was car" then it doesnt work. But if ur just building a hot rod with a cool body then hell yea! I was talking to the original owner of a speed shop in my area and i was telling him about my car and he said thats how they would've done it back in the day. Shove the biggest motor u can between the rails. So while my car is not traditional in one sense it does keep with the tradition of hot rodding.

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  21. fab32
    Joined: May 14, 2002
    Posts: 13,985

    Member Emeritus

    WOW!!! seven pages and not one new fact, idea, concept has been put forth. PnB, think you could come up with something new to waste the space on here? YOU say you periodically have to revisit this what end. You like me are at the fossilized end of this craziness. I'm 70 going on 103. What could possibly drive you to this ( 25 billion posts should stroke our ego enough) this ground has been plowed so many times there is nothing but dust to stir up. How about after this drivel has gone on for another 20-30 pages you sum up what it has accomplished in the way of satisfying your opening statement about keeping up with the current thinking. Inquiring (comatose) minds want to know.

    51 Leadsled and kidcampbell71 like this.
  22. F-ONE
    Joined: Mar 27, 2008
    Posts: 2,331

    from Alabama

    Maybe that's the point.
  23. Pewsplace
    Joined: Feb 10, 2007
    Posts: 2,782


  24. olscrounger
    Joined: Feb 23, 2008
    Posts: 4,007


    Like the trad look but want the car to do what I want it to--build it the way I want-stop quickly, haul ass-but no LS motors for me--close but not prefect traditional.
    Last edited: Aug 22, 2014

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