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Just a (depressing) observation...

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by white64, Oct 25, 2012.

  1. Pete1
    Joined: Aug 23, 2004
    Posts: 2,167

    from Wa.

    I think things are still somewhat relative compared to the late 40's on. I lived in a town of half a million and there were about 10 really dedicated hot rodders. These were people that really wanted a hot rod of some kind and were willing to spend all of their income minus 10% to live on for the car. They were young and had little real life experience and skills in welding, machining and all of the other things associated with building a car essentially from scratch. They went to trade schools and read everything they could get their hands on about the various skills needed. They learned by doing along with all the failures along the way.
    In a town of similar size today there might be 20 or 30 people with the same mind set. These are the ones you read about at the top of various venue race results. You rarely see them hanging around drive-ins or computer game rooms.
    Now as in the "olden dayz", there are people that are "hard core" types that will end up at the top of the profession in various categories due to their desire to learn. The rest of them will be the "also ran's". In any hobby or sport the also ran's are essential to the
    survival of the hobby so it is not a bad thing. The more ambitious people need to try to get the others to upgrade is all.
  2. mink
    Joined: Oct 4, 2007
    Posts: 1,331

    from CT


    No need for her to be in this position, I don't care how man jack stands you have.
  3. Cowtown Speed Shop
    Joined: Sep 26, 2010
    Posts: 1,185

    Cowtown Speed Shop
    from KC

    This is exactly right!....I hear cry babies all the time saying I wish I could afford to have a 32 ford, And I tell them they can, It is real easy...Sell that piece of shit new pickup that you signed 5-7 years of your life away for and finance a 32 ford.....Bottomline is you are losing money everyday on that new pickup, As the value goes down everyday. But 32 fords have not been going down in price for many years, So when guys wine about not being able to have their dream car and they are making payments on a piece of shit made overseas plastic fendered late model car or truck, I call bullshit!!....Bottomline is I am the brokest guy I know and If I can own (3) 32 fords, (4) model A's, And a model T Among alot of other really cool shit Being self employed raising 5 small kids and putting my wife through nursing school. Then any dumbass can own his or her dream hot rod. Period!!....If you think otherwise You are just a lazy ass and thats all there is too it.
    Last edited: Apr 25, 2014
  4. tfeverfred
    Joined: Nov 11, 2006
    Posts: 15,792

    Member Emeritus

    "But 32 fords have not been going down in price for many years." Where? I know a couple guys seriously looking right now.
  5. Tudorp
    Joined: Mar 27, 2014
    Posts: 174


    I hear ya, but you need to know I would never put her in harms way. The car had 2 jack stands, and two cinder blocks back there, as well as a 4 ton floor jack under it. Lots of redundant safety. I drilled safety into her about jacks, jack stands and them failing. She is well aware, as she actually not long before this saw first hand a floor jack fail (popped a seal) when I was lifting my Dodge 1 ton truck. I lost a floor jack in that, and was actually glad she was there to see it first hand why you never depend on them to keep you safe. Her eyes got big when my truck came down and it drove all my training of her home seeing one fail. She was safe under there believe me, or I would never had let her get under it. But that said, I do understand your comment.
  6. Model T1
    Joined: May 11, 2012
    Posts: 3,309

    Model T1

    I don't know why but I read much of this thread all over again. I guess mostly to hear grown men cry. But several posts stood out and made it all worth while. The last one by cowtown and the two by Tudorp. Thanks guys.
    I have three grown kids who don't care crap about cars except for transportation. Plus a 24 year old who I am very proud of as a car guy. We can help create their interest. But I don't think car guys are built. Like Tudorp's daughter they just happen!

    PS to work on old cars ya gotta get under them. Proper stands and jacks are there for safety. We all don't have money or room for fancy hoists.
  7. seb fontana
    Joined: Sep 1, 2005
    Posts: 7,975

    seb fontana
    from ct

    You are blessed...I tried with my step kids and the grand kids and it was always one way..If I was fifty years younger I could be the kid next door, down the street, accross town; I'd be at your house a lot.;).
  8. Tudorp
    Joined: Mar 27, 2014
    Posts: 174


    I agree with this. The spark has to be there to begin with. All we can do is encurrage and feed that spark. Believe me, i tried and tried with my sons, but that spark wasn't there to start the flame. No spark, no fire to feed. But with my daughter, it was there from the time she could crawl. She loved to go to all the car events, swap meets, and all of it, even when we were pushing her around in a stroller. Then we would get home, and she would flip her stroller upside down and "work" on it.. That spark was there, in her from day one. Your either born with it, or your not.
  9. zoethedog
    Joined: Dec 22, 2013
    Posts: 3

    from Florida

    Your observation is true of most collections. The baby boomers lived in truly remarkable times, the best music, the best cars, the best (safest) illegal drugs, and lest I forget the sexual revolution. Hell, the Rolling Stones can still fill an arena, I bet "Iced Pee" or whatever will never be able to say that. Boomers want to remember those times and when we are gone, collecting as a hobby (collecting of anything) will be gone.

    Just 64, but still buying stuff that will outlast me.
  10. TomP64
    Joined: Dec 10, 2008
    Posts: 427

    from Vancouver

    Junior Miss Tudorp is refreshing to see. Cute, sure, but getting any kids her age into the hobby is a great thing.
    My younger relatives have no interest at all. Even the plastic wrap was still on the car themed Nintendo game Xmas gift when i was there last week.
  11. I went to the Englishtown swap a couple weeks ago, and there was still a bunch of younger guys there buying up older stuff. If you aren't hellbent on a Deuce or 55 Chevy, rodding can still be affordable. I picked up a pretty solid '52 Plymouth for 500 bucks only a year and a half ago, a 318 off CL for 100, some junkyard bits and stuff I had on hand, it really doesn't add up to much if you're not afraid to work for it and get your hands dirty.
    I think the big problem isn't so much that kids nowadays aren't into the older cars, or don't have the money. It's that they live in the "GIMME IT NOW" generation. Everything for them is instant, they never had to seek out the knowledge or fix things with their bare hands. They live on fast food, find out what's going on instantly on Facebook or Twitter, and watch things on instant streaming. If something of theirs takes a crap, they throw it away and buy another on credit. It's not their fault, it's the way of the world. Maybe because nobody took the time to teach them otherwise.
  12. Tudorp! Great posts. You and your daughter are awesome!!
  13. Cowtown Speed Shop
    Joined: Sep 26, 2010
    Posts: 1,185

    Cowtown Speed Shop
    from KC

    One thing I have found to be true,You can not force the hot rod sickness on your kids, My oldest son, Now 11 I thought would be my hot rod kid, But he Could care less about cars, He likes baseball and sports...But now my 8 year old son, every year at the parent teachers confrence is the same old story, His teacher will say "David is a pretty good student But all he ever talks about is old Cars" And by the way I have a stack of hot rod magazines in my desk that I have had to take away from him". I been hearing this from his diffrent teachers since he started school. Bottomline is he has the sickness, And there is No known cure, Atleast Not that I have ever heard of. I laugh when some of you guys call this a hobby, Shit I wish I could say this was just a hobby, For me it is a way of life...And I would not want to live with out it!!....No drug!... legal or illegal that I ever tried even came close to the high I get from my cars...
    Last edited: Apr 26, 2014
  14. Engine man
    Joined: Jan 30, 2011
    Posts: 3,480

    Engine man
    from Wisconsin

    I've seen the decline of mechanical aptitude in the last 30 years. Finding anyone with interest and ability to do mechanical work is very difficult. So many mechanics are reaching retirement age and the tech schools aren't getting many students in auto mechanics classes.

    The hot rod culture was founded on the ability to get old cars cheap, as they were basically discarded, and install modern drive trains in them from crashed cars that were also discarded.
  15. Cowtown, you are absolutely right! I've been this way as long as I can remember and it hasn't changed much in 50 years I've been obsessed with old cars. And being a Deuce nut has just made it worse!
  16. HotRodToomer
    Joined: Jun 25, 2006
    Posts: 857


    At 24, I will say 90% of what requires cash for this choice of vehicle has been a kick in the shins.
    Exhaust tips, $750 Repo, rusty holed originals, $400, Etc. Etc.
    This goes for both aftermarket manufactures & swap meet guys, some swap meet guys will knock a large chunk off just because its a nitch car sometimes.
    But $500+ for a dented & trashed 53' sombrero? com'on!

    BUT, This has been on my mind since I was 5, I couldn't be interested in any other kind of car, old Detroit iron has its hooks in deep.
  17. 37slantback
    Joined: May 31, 2010
    Posts: 468


    You are spot on about not forcing your interest on the young. I was hoping the little guy across the street would have developed an interest after watching me work on the cars but he would rather skateboard on the creeper. I have considered leaving him the 34 but I can see that is not his interest area. I do plan to drag him to some car shows though! :)

  18. Slimmey
    Joined: May 7, 2013
    Posts: 87


    My brothers boy (now 23) loves old cars, but doesn't have the ambition to work on them. His dad has to finish what he starts. I had high hopes for him, but that's not going to happen.

    My youngest sister just moved back from Texas, and her oldest boy ( 9 ) wants to come down to my shop and help me on my coupe. When he was six my sister bought a new pedal car kit so I could restore hers that dad had built her when she was little. When I finished it he wanted me to build him one from the new body left over. I asked him what color he wanted it, he said red with white flames. Surprised the crap out of me! So he got it his way. This boy is my last hope in this family of passing on the building tradition.

    Posted using the Full Custom H.A.M.B. App!
  19. wouterftw
    Joined: Aug 6, 2010
    Posts: 68


    I imported my '50 Ford from Miami when I was 24. My younger brother's building a '55 Ford. I have a couple of friends of about the same age that love working on this old stuff. Problem is getting the parts we need and the prices..

    Posted using the Full Custom H.A.M.B. App!
  20. Just search eBay for 32 parts and prepare for an eye opener :eek:
  21. Quickest way to get a teenager uninterested in a hobby is to let them learn that they can't afford it!
  22. Tudorp
    Joined: Mar 27, 2014
    Posts: 174


    awesome seeing the kids in the cars. On that note, I been bragging on my 16 yo daughter. Here are a couple shots of her out with me in my project garage when she was a toddler. (excuse her weird "mullet" this was about the time she decided to take scissors and style her own hair, lol. For that, she hates these pictures.. hahah) . But I couldn't turn a wrench in the garage unless she was right there. She also got to christen the seats I reupholstered for the 1930.


  23. Squablow
    Joined: Apr 26, 2005
    Posts: 16,736


    My girlfriend is building a '51 Chevy for $1 invested, and a lot of re-selling and horse trading. If you're willing to work for it, the old car hobby doesn't have to be expensive.

    And while I have seen lots of young guys who want everything "instant gratification", I've also noticed it's often the ambitious young guys who take on the rough projects that the old guys don't want, and I've listened to old guys bitch for an hour about a repair that would take a half hour.

    The hobby is not dying off. If you go to an event and all you see is old guys, then you're going to the wrong events. Lawn chair car shows that end at 2pm are dying off, but that ain't hot rodding.
  24. Ulu
    Joined: Feb 26, 2014
    Posts: 1,775

    from CenCal

    My kids will each inherit a ticket into this culture when I die. Past that I won't worry about what will become of all our work. It's up to them.

    In the end it'll all be rust anyway.

    But advances in computer & robot technology will make it possible to recreate nearly perfect antique parts without expensive mass production tooling. It's not here yet, but it's coming without a doubt.

    Thousands of computer guys are working right now so you can press a button and create a perfect 1918 Ford windshield stanchion from metal powder and binary code.

    I laughed when people warned on the news that criminals can make plastic guns with this computer gear. Who needs $10k of computer gear? I can make a plastic gun in my garage with a $40 Chinese drill press.
  25. Paul
    Joined: Aug 29, 2002
    Posts: 16,081


    involve them and make it fun for them early

    grandson Morgen yesterday



  26. pitman
    Joined: May 14, 2006
    Posts: 5,149


    Paul, so well portrayed!
  27. Shaun1162
    Joined: Feb 22, 2010
    Posts: 933


    Being a young member here (20) I can definately see that I am in the minority. While there are certainly some younger members, its a small fraction compared to the general population.

    The same goes for the rest of the car world that I see. I went to a swap meet over the weekend in Fitchburg Mass, and now that I think about it- I was probably one of the youngest ones actually buying parts for my projects. Heck, I don't even remember seeing many young kids walking around with their parents.

    It seems like every car show or swap has taken a down-turn... For those in the Northeast, it's pretty evident at the Amherst swap. I remember going when I was young kid and it was packed with vendors and people shopping- particuarly the first and last swap meet. I went to Amherst on Sunday before heading to Fitchburg and arrived at 6AM. I'm usually there even earlier to beat the mile long line of cars trying to get in. This time- not a single car in line. I didn't even have to wait to pay the parking attendents. I realize that Fitchburg and another swap meet were going on but still, it was a ghost scene.

    To be honest, I have no idea what went wrong. Maybe it's the high prices, or people becoming less mechanically inclined that drove people away. I'm really not sure how I got into the hot rod culture either. My Dad always had a few old cars, ranging from a Model A sedan (that I don't even remember, aside from pictures) to Camaro's and old pickups. When he got into restoring old race cars I was at the age where I was a little more interested. His involvement was pretty minor in the overall process (he's never learned how to weld, etc), but I guess something clicked in my head.

    Here's a '33 Ford that I re-built when I was 19. Aside from sandblasting, I did everything. It's certainly not perfect, but I can say I did it myself, learned a wealth of knowledge, and met a ton of good connections along the way. While the rest of my generation seems to be more addicted to the smart-phones, I'll still try to do my best and keep the tradition alive. After all, I don't think there's any cure to this sickness!




  28. missysdad1
    Joined: Dec 9, 2008
    Posts: 3,271


    I had the same experience as the OP last weekend at the Pate Swap Meet here in DFW but came to a different conclusion:

    The high prices, in my senior citizen opinion, is a sign of desperation among sellers. They (we) know that the number of buyers is dwindling due to attrition by age and by interest area and are trying to maximize what we can get for the stuff we've got...while we've still got a chance to get it.

    Once the old guys die off (myself included here) nobody will be buying the old crap we've collected over the years so it'll get scrapped by our heirs...or go into the hole with us.

    The H.A.M.B. is the best influence there is, but not all rodders pay any attention to it like we do, preferring instead to use Street Rodder Magazine and the cars which appear there as examples to be emulated.

    So rather than lowering the prices on stuff, why don't us oldsters concentrate on setting an example for the younger guys by building clean and affordable hot rods and customs (like those built by European and Scandinavian rodders) instead of spending our kid's inheritance on billet baubles and high buck paint?

    The future is ours to mold. Let's get to it, shall we.
    Last edited: May 2, 2014
  29. R Frederick
    Joined: Mar 30, 2009
    Posts: 2,658

    R Frederick
    from illinois

    I'll take you up on that, the treasure hunt sounds like a real adventure.;)

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