The Jalopy Journal
Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by SamIyam, Jul 8, 2005.
What? Build a hot rod with your mind?
I always thought of her box as Amazonian
This is a great message, and you deliver it well. Thanks.
Well said Sam.
When I got my '54, I did not know how to weld.
It needed floors, cab corners and cowels.
I had to (gasp) take the bed off and then (gasp, again) take the cab off to get to where the floors should have been. I had no one holding my hand. I knew that I would have to get my own hands dirty to get it done.
Now, I have great respect for those who have done this all before and even greater respect for those who have done this repeatedly.
I also am not afraid to get the metal out and weld what I need. I recently inherited someof my faher-in-laws machine tools.
Guess what, now I get to learn that end of it.
Hope people take the time to read this, nicely put.
Great measage and well put. Young guys come over to my shop and see the hot rods and think all they need is a few hand tools and they'll be done in a couple months (some saw a TV show on a car club building a T), didn't think it took anymore than that to build a hot rod, LOL.
You have the perfect attitude for building cars! Sometimes you have to take that leap of faith (like pulling the bed off or cab off, in your case)... and just DO IT.
Making mistakes is also part of the equation... I know it sounds corney, but you learn from your mistakes!
"Learn from your mistakes"
Yeah, I learned about how sheet metal shrinks and bows when not welded properly. Little things like that...
Great post Sam!!
Great points made, I think everyone that reads it will take something from it.
My Buick has been sitting in the corner for the last three years...brb
And NEVER be afraid to ask questions. The only dumb Q there is, is the one you never asked!
Love the post. Must print it out and put it on the wall.
the old lady won't appreciate it as much me thinks.
Looks like it's a great post, Sam, but I gotta run to Jiffy Lube before my tee time this afternoon. Maybe tomorrow after the Cubs game I'll have a chance to read it before Law & Order comes on!
Posts like this and People like Sam are the reason that I stay on this board and the "other" boards have way fewer users....
just this last weekend I traded a guy his stock 37 ford bed for my "chopped" 35 bed. I bought a welder a while ago and had done some little crap with it....Anyway I brought home the stock bed and knew I needed to cut 10 inches off the front to make it look right on my truck....I have never done this and had done very little actuall fabricating on my own....Well at the end of the day the bed is 11 inches shorted the floor is cut out and the bracing is done...Along with that was some custom shock mounts and repairs on the doors...
It was a huge leap of faith that I could do it...You know what, after I was done I thought to myself that I could handle anything (I know I can't but i still felt like I could). Thanks for the post....
Awesome post Sam.
I'm not giving up....
FREAKING GREAT GREAT GREAT post man, no doubt this is what its ALL about... im not givin up, but it will take me til spring.. LOL.... but yeah man, thats how i got my body and shit, people gave up..... LOL... thats how i like to get all my parts, CHEAP! buildin for under $400, well, $1000 if u add 17" spokes and tires, HEHEHEHE... anwyays... when i get along the way, i will post pics... but WAY TO GO with kool ass post...
If yours is like mine, you are gonna hafta pin her down to a written list of honey-do's or the list in her head will always be unfinished...
and your dreams of driving that hot rod will be.
also,,ive learned that spending ATLEAST 1/2 an hour a day everyday after work,weither your tired or not gets results quickly,,i know,it doesnt sound like alot of work time,,but it adds up quickly,,getting started is the hardest thing sometimes..if you give your self that weekly goal,,odds are after geting started,,you wont want to stop after a half hour of work.. if you dont set aside time,,your not gonna get anything done,,a saturday a week just isnt enough for me...
ive taught myself and learned from others as well how to do many things over the years ,just for the reason that i wanted something done so badly,,but i never had the cash to pay someone to do it,,,if you want something bad enough,you will figure out how to do it!!! im no expert,but i can say i do all my own work,,and im a DUMBASS!
Well said Sam.
Everyone wants to drive a hot rod, no question about that. I bought my first one done and decided that I could do better myself, even though I had no clue what I was doing. Ha Ha Ha. I spent a little over a year building the spacetruck and took it to about 6 or 7 shows last year. Most people don't realize that for those 20 nights out being a "Hero" as everyone puts it, I spent 300 out in the garage by myself. Not a very good ratio if you are just interested in the "scene" not too bad if you really enjoy every aspect of your hot rod. This year I will probably go to about 5 shows. The rest of the time I am out in the garage working on the new one. That about covers my view of the "time" aspect.
If you have a choice to go out to a bar, or help your buddy work in the garage and you choose the bar, you had better just buy your car done. If you say you can't afford a done car you better quit spending all your money on PBR at the bar. If you aren't prepared to spend a good chunk of your income on your car then you probably shouldn't even get started. I spend at LEAST $500 a month on my garage habit, which is about a third of my take home pay. There is the "money" side
I know a few people that claim that they want to build cars but don't know how. They want me to "Help" them which I take as,"will you build my car for me?". I tell them to come out to the garage because I am always there, but they never show up. Yet the next time I am out they still talk to about me helping them. You have to help yourself first before you expect others to help you. Ambition.
I enjoy the build part the most. If you have to force yourself to work on stuff you might as well give it up. I also think that if you listen to hair metal you stay focused. Maybe everyone should try that. Ha Ha Ha.
As for the talent part, I don't think I am any better at fabrication than most people. There are a lot of people on this board a hell of a lot more talented than I am. I have only built 2 cars now and I learned how to weld on the first one. I see people like choprods, killer, and many others who have worked on a lot more shit than I have. I have just been lucky both of mine have turned out OK so far. I have a lot more ambition than talent. Sam maybe you need to add that 4th factor into you equation. Ha Ha Ha
My buddy Russ always said that if you do three things a night, you eventually run out of things to do. He is right.
Great stuff Sam.
Beyond tenacity, I think that not being afraid to ask for help is what gets a lot of builders to the next level and gets cars done.
I would have figured out how to gas weld w/ out instruction...but it would have taken longer. I would have figured out how to do a brake job if I didn't ask Forsakenfew for help...but it would have taken longer. Learning on your own is fine, but learning efficiently is finer. Ask questions.
Great post/theory -Sam.........its all true!
I want to add a little something that a lot of us overlook......
You all know the guy who is building a car.....for 38 fucking years already!!!
This is what I am saying....give your 50 percent to the family/wife...AND DEMAND YOUR 50 PERCENT IN RETURN!!!!!
thats why the guy above never get it done -hes alway on "their 50"- percent [which more often equals 99%-Ha!]
Nicely put, and very true!
I've photographed your work.
It is second to none.
i have made a lot of mistakes but it doesnt bother me... some of them costly, some minor... mostly, its lost time. i chaulk it up to the Learning Process and just keep moving on. i like car junk too much to get depressed over a broken part.
about a year ago i got a car with a rats nest for electricals, i dropped some coin for a wiring kit... learned a lot about the car itself, including the previous owners hacks.
low springs has been a big help in understanding fabrication, we use a lot of bubble gum and double sided sticky tape... sometimes, after work ill hop over for a few hours and just ask questions and talk about techniques used on customer cars, otherwise, ill just give a call and shoot the shit about the same stuff.
ive always got questions but seem to find answers in the HAMB archives or in books.... the other questions will be answered as i do things. if its too late to do anything outside, iam inside going over checklists, part #'s and cost... more importantly, a schedule for myself.
id say my biggest problem is getting stuff done fast... i tend to take my time... even more dangerous, ill start taking other things apart just because i can. granted, this is cool if its put back together that day... but usually i wont get everything assembled in a timely fashion. im getting better at just leaving shit alone.....
edit: what im trying to say is... get something done, whether its research, making a budget or actual hands on work.
very cool message. Its so true. I am in the middle of the learning process myself, as we build my hot rod. However i have excellent help and I am learning as we go. One thing I found out real quick is it takes COMMITMENT, from everyone involved, not just me but my family. I see my kids maybe 1 time a week after I get off work and in the mornings before I go to work. I see my wife for a couple of minutes as she wakes up when I walk in at 1am smelling like metal, only to wake up at 6am and go to work then go build. Its hard on the kids and my wife but we are commited till the end, you have to be from the get go or you will fail. I will not give up, I will be on the salt with my hot rod if it kills Deek and I..
Well Put, I haven't built anything yet, I have to fix this car before I can start another project. About 2 years ago I learned how to change oil (I was 13-14 at the time) We changed the oil in my 55, back then it took us about 1.5 hrs, cause it was my first time, and we didn't have the right wrench. Now I can get it done in 10-20 mins, I have so much fun changing oil, gettin dirty. Thanks Sam, I am going to with what Johnny Rockets said and print it out.
I can't help but say Great Read Sam...
I'm 2/3 the way through my first project and more enthusiastic than ever... I can relate to your post quite well, my brother-in-law bought a 52 Chevy project shortly after I started my 53 and a year and a half later his is no different then when we pushed it into his garage...not one part purchased...not one thing fixed...
He stops by often, he can't believe the progress I've made but never takes the first step to getting his started...
It hasn't worked on him yet but I tell him often... just take one thing and fix it, don't ignore the big picture but at the same time don't let it stop you from fixing that one thing...then move onto the next thing... Do this and make sure you spend at least one night in the garage a week and you'll have a Hot Rod well on its way soon...
Great post Sam. As I read it I kept thinking of my buddy's father who bought a '48 F2 with the dreams of making it a rodded version of a truck his father had at the lumber yard in the '50s. The problem is he has never turned a wrench in his life and the truck has been sitting in pieces for 3 and a half years. I have already bought the original running gear from him because someone told him a '78 chevy truck frame would be stronger. He is now trying to sell the 350 that is in it because someone else told him that the 305 is a better motor. I am hoping to swoop in and buy the whole lot from him when he finally accepts defeat.
This is a perfect example of what you are talking about.
thanks for this post. It will help me along the way.
I recently went home in cocoa beach to see my parents from college. My uncle who lives there has friends into car clubs.
The BEST TRADITIONAL car i've ever seen in brevard county or even florida sits in my uncles driveway next to my dad when this friend named Bob comes over.
It's a 1933 plymouth chopped and channeled, no fenders, but with a new 350. It's awesome and they guy got it by trading a crappy willies.
I've ridden in it and recently started getting respect from the old timers for building my custom norton. I decided that when i graduate i'm going to teach back in brevard and hang out with them to learn. They told me they'd help me.
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