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Driving your ride while working on it???

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by dogwalkin, Apr 25, 2013.

  1. 1971BB427
    Joined: Mar 6, 2010
    Posts: 5,681

    from Oregon

    That's what I did with my Austin when I built it. I put it together over the first winter after purchasing it, and then drove it all summer the next year, while working out bugs and finishing bodywork. I had a lot of fun with it, and still hit a lot of cruises while progressing with various changes.
    Last winter I tore it apart again and did the final prep and bodywork before sending it off for paint. Then drove it all 2012 again after paint, and continued small upgrades. It's made for a more enjoyable project having it to use as I finished it.
    I'm doing my next project the same way. I started a '63 Falcon gasser a couple months ago, and hope to have it driveable in about 6-8 weeks from now. I'll drive it and work out bugs, then get deeper into it this fall.
  2. Boones
    Joined: Mar 4, 2001
    Posts: 9,560

    from Kent, Wa

    all my projects are typically driving while I work on them with the exception of during winter when I take it off the road to do larger projects that take months to complete.
  3. GearSlammer
    Joined: Feb 27, 2013
    Posts: 203


    ahhh you beat me to it!!
  4. young'n'poor
    Joined: Jan 26, 2006
    Posts: 1,280


    I'm driving my galaxie while I work on it. It's nice to have it to cruise around in so I don't lose interest. It's made me notice all the things I wish were different about it though, and thinking about how long it'll take to get there kinda bugs me. I've considered just throwing a few needed patch panels on it and putting it and primer and giving up on it for awhile so I can build something nicer ground up. I figure I can always tear it apart in a few years when something else is done
  5. 28TUDOR
    Joined: Jan 25, 2007
    Posts: 419


    I worked on my 50 Olds last night and drove it to work today. But I'm been working on the 28 for about 9 1/2 years now. Should be getting paint on it tonight!:D
  6. agshelby
    Joined: Jan 6, 2010
    Posts: 497


    I've built a car from the frame up as a complete disassembly, and have rebuilt a few from the frame up as a series of weekend projects while keeping it on the road. I much prefer keeping them on the road.

    I am rebuilding my 40 truck this way, doing the brakes, suspension, etc as individual small projects that won't take the truck off the road for more than a day or so. On the other hand I have the model A chassis collecting dust on the other side of the garage.

    I have found that keeping one on the road helps me maintain interest and a disassembled car tends to take much longer to complete, even though it is the same amount of work overall.
  7. Atwater Mike
    Joined: May 31, 2002
    Posts: 10,080

    Atwater Mike

    When I was a teen, I worked at the 'best garage in Santa Clara'. My '46 Tudor got a Dago axle one Thursday night, wishbone bolts took heat to get 'em out, so I walked to work Friday. But I drove it Saturday!

    Why can't I breeze thru jobs like that now? (I must 'know too much'!)
  8. COOP
    Joined: Mar 27, 2006
    Posts: 256


    Most of the cars that I have built were from scratch, or from the ground up. Way back in '59 while I was in High school I started on a model A coupe. Probably took more time than it should have to get to the running and driving stage due to my lack of funds. However once it was running I figured the hard part was over. Nope.... there was glass to contend with, an interior of some sort, and paint. Paint, who has money for paint when you can jump in it and terrorize the streets, and hit the local drag strip. Car never did get finished. I had it for about 3 years, which is forever when yer 18. Got married and cars kinda took a back seat, but it came back when I found a started T bucket that someone wanted to get rid of. Same shit again. Got it runnin' with a big block, whahooo lotsa fun. Wires taped together, interior flappin' in the breeze, missing paint, cracked fiberglass, but it was a driver. Back in 2000 I built a 29 roadster. Lotsa used and abused parts, but I knew exactly what I wanted to build, This time the engine was only rolled over to verify the correct wiring. The whole car, and I mean the whole car was done 100% before I even started it. I wasn't even sure of the old flathead, which the guy I got it from swore it ran good. But sure enuff, fired right up, took off down the driveway, and been drivin' it ever since. Got two projects goin' right now and I'm gonna do the same with them. Dunno about the rest of ya, but it works for me. Norm
  9. OldschoolJay
    Joined: Dec 31, 2006
    Posts: 28


    i drive my 56 international every day and work on little things at night and the weekends.
    i just like driving it to damn much
  10. Blue One
    Joined: Feb 6, 2010
    Posts: 10,518

    Blue One
    from Alberta

    Up here we have a distracted driving law. We can't use a hand held cell phone to talk and certainly not to text while driving.

    I would imagine trying to install gauges while driving would fit right into that law :D

    Or any other work on it while driving :D
  11. castirondude
    Joined: Jan 26, 2012
    Posts: 496


    I would drive it as others said, but have another vehicle available. I've done it before, a driving project, when I had no other car. On more than one occasion had to walk the 7 miles each way to the parts store, because they gave me the wrong part or something broke !!

    -> So the hamb friendly answer is: have two or three driving projects and you'll be all set :D

    Sent from my Verizon 4G LTE smartphone
  12. KenCrete
    Joined: Jun 1, 2012
    Posts: 157

    from Milwaukee

    Yea, I TRY not to get into anything that will leave me without the car for more than a couple days. As of right now I'm driving my 54 with one fender sanded and half my hood sanded. Still not sure what color I want, so taking my time while enjoying it.
  13. 49styleline
    Joined: Nov 1, 2012
    Posts: 507

    from oregon

    Yeah looking back I wish I would have done this with my 49 it was in decent shape too but we just got it running so finally I can drive it. It does definitely help keep me motivated .
    Joined: Aug 7, 2009
    Posts: 2,069


    I drive my fricken A while NEGLECTING to work on it.
  15. I agree with HRM it sure is nice to have a back-up while working in your project,
    my problem is "too many irons". Working on my 65 Galaxie that I want to drive,then knowing that my 55 F-100 needs much attention,and the 24 dodge coupe that needs it all.But at least I can drive the 27 to get parts for the others ...until it needs work.
    Nice to drive it while you work on it,but the big items can be time suckers.
  16. Lild
    Joined: Feb 22, 2010
    Posts: 260


    I purposely bought my car in driving condition so I didnt have a "project" that would never get finished. Im working on the body a little at a time and then will move to interior and still drive it all the while.
  17. My '31 DB coupe is an every day driver/fixer upper.....come to think of it....ALL of mine are that way.

    Attached Files:

  18. Veach
    Joined: Jun 1, 2012
    Posts: 1,081


    One thing about an Old Car so long as you have the money there is always something that needs to be Fixed or Changed
  19. 50dodge4x4
    Joined: Aug 7, 2004
    Posts: 3,535


    Your suppose to fix them up? :eek:

    I used to do the major stuff through the winter and drive it all summer, but these days, I start the major project when the weather starts getting nice (it took a long time this year) and am ready to drive it through the summer.

    I spent 2 years getting it to the point of being a reliable driver while I drove my 50 4x4. When the 50 4x4 got wrecked in the fall of the year, I really pushed hard to get the coupe drivable. Now the body work is next in line (the welding is mostly done) and the filler work will be done as I drive the coupe. Though I do have a heated garage, I need it to make a living, so much of the hot rod gets done outside unless its something I can sneak in and get done in an afternoon. Gene
  20. cheepsk8
    Joined: Sep 5, 2011
    Posts: 554

    from west ky

    Once I get a car roadworthy, I enact my two week rule. I don't start anything that will keep it off the road for longer than that. It seems to keep me motivated to get back to driving it again. Doesn't work every time.
  21. I'm workin' on getting it to drive, and if it does drive, I will be driven to keep working on it.
    Does that make sense, or should I lay off the blue jellybeans awhile? I'm sure it's the blue ones...
  22. Brad54
    Joined: Apr 15, 2004
    Posts: 6,008

    from Atl Ga

    Over 60,000 miles while slowly rebuilding the '61 Suburban.
    Rewired, instrument cluster restored, brakes rebuilt and upgraded with dual reservoir, new engine, new trans, new rear end, new bumpers, new radiator, heater rebuilt, floors replaced, etc. etc. etc.

    No, it's not like I want it to be... and driving around in a beater for the last 7 years has gotten pretty damn old.
    But I've had a hell of a lot of fun in the truck, and I've got four other project cars I've started doing "The right way," and haven't turned a tire on them... which do you think has been more satisfying?

  23. dogwalkin
    Joined: Jan 17, 2013
    Posts: 88

    from tn

    Man I was not expecting to get such a response to my question. I guess I just see so many slick fixed up cars I never gave much thought to how many people did just what we are talking about here. Anyway thanks for so much encouragement. I guess I will stick a sticker on the back window that says "Work in progress"
  24. Mr.Dickies
    Joined: Jan 23, 2007
    Posts: 664


    I have done both building and driving and just building. I like to be able to drive mine now. It fuels me to get it done already! I would say it's way better to be able to drive while working on it at least for me. There are some things that make it hard to do and still be able to drive because you have a shorter time to finish that it has to be back together before you have to be back to driving to get to work or whatever. Good Luck
  25. Tnomoldw
    Joined: Dec 5, 2012
    Posts: 1,563


    :)I guess I never considered having a car/ truck that was down for very long . I've always had too many cars and too many hobbies and things going on in my life to have a car in the garage for more than a couple weeks, and I've had a lot of cars.:cool::eek:
  26. Dead End Sleds
    Joined: Oct 13, 2009
    Posts: 219

    Dead End Sleds

    Unnecessary. It's your car. You'll know that. Other than that who cares?

    Besides, I bet people will still think it's cool, no matter the condition. It drives me crazy that mine isn't where I want it to be (My own mental issues with wanting it to be done, but still wanting to drive it too). But I still get numerous compliments each day and A LOT of people wave going down the road. It's pretty cool and crazy to me also.

    So my point is (I think I have one): Drive it, enjoy it, have fun; no sticker or explanation needed.
    Joined: Jan 2, 2003
    Posts: 3,861

    1. HAMB Old Farts' Club

    Going on 29 years, working on 4th rebuild. I'll be dead long before I finish, too much fun to drive.-MIKE:cool:

  28. 1959Nomad
    Joined: Jun 21, 2009
    Posts: 2,078


    Cars are meant to be driven and rods are to be what you want them to be.
    Once you tear the car apart you normally fine there will be more to do than you planned so you have to decide what you want out of it.
  29. cmarcus
    Joined: May 23, 2012
    Posts: 948


    That's my plan here. Traded my driver Caddy for 2 cars, a 50 Chevy (in progress) and a 63 Bel Air sedan, which is pretty rough. Going to cruise the 63 despite its roughness, but for now it's a big old car to cruise! Then once the 50 is streetable, I'll drive that albeit a continual WIP, and sell the 63 for $$$ to throw at the 50.



    Posted from the TJJ App for iPhone & iPad
  30. csimonds
    Joined: Jul 24, 2009
    Posts: 546


    I drive my 50 Buford Super even though it is a work in progress all original drive-train. It can be a slow process going ANYWHERE, lol. Top speed is about 45 to 50 mph. I have a new rear that I will be stripping of its gears to get better speed. Damn it is fun though!

    Attached Files:

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