The Jalopy Journal
Discussion in 'Traditional Hot Rods' started by J.Ukrop, Jan 15, 2021.
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“Progress.” Ain’t it a kick in the teeth?! Great pics!
Sorry for the loss of your garage door. It's character and worth as a garage door escapes the garage door death squad (inspector).
Sorry for my attempt at humor, but inspectors have a way of claiming anything old as instant death trap.
Inspectors, making the world more boring with each inspection.
Love the shots with your roadster!
Been slapped by a few of those old doors, but they do hide good stuff sometimes. Poor old door.
Good story brother .... progress really stinks sometimes .... and I love the Coupe picture.
STANLEY, what a COOL name.
Yep, I get it. My house was built in '41 and my garage door is original. It's long overdue to be replaced, but I struggle with doing that (struggle to open the damn door sometimes too ). I feel the same way about my house as I do about old cars... only original once and all that.
I lived in this same neighbourhood when I was a kid in the '70s and used to walk by this house pretty regularly. There was a late '40s pickup in the driveway for quite a few years, then a mid-'60s Rivi, and then a sky blue early '70s Olds Tornado. They never seemed to move. The Olds sat here the longest and I remember my Dad asking about buying it... no luck. The name of the guy that built the house was Norm, there's a cornerstone beside the front door, buried behind a bush now. I like to think that Norm and I would get along fairly well.
I guess I kinda dig history in all shapes and sizes.
This is the coolest thing that I've seen all day. Is this your place? What's the story on it? Did you build your coupe in there?
A friend got the old wood and glass shop doors from an old service station, for the shop he was building before he completed it so was able to build the doorways to suit.
But he lamented that he never planned on doing a full restoration of wooden garage doors. It was a really big project.
I hope the octagon windows of the garage door that was the original subject of this thread were saved.
Love your story, and love old doors with old things behind...
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Love the story And the new roadster look! Hopefully, those doors got saved. I would much rather have that style than the old wooden ones ( now, there’s Danger). Had a pair of the “Stanley” doors in Tenn. and even had openers on them! That roadster is looking Tuff, Carp.
Love the top on the car Joey! Man it looks so much meaner now. I love tying to match cars with buildings. Looks like SF and California in general is the motherland for that. I ended up buying a print from Nat Meier of that 30-31 roadster in front of the stucco houses. Timeless!
...Love that image as well.
You took me right back to the farm growing up. We had a big garage with 4 wooden doors. The building had an upstairs, and each door had 2 cables running upstairs via pulleys, and had concrete counterweights attached. Those doors were not the easiest to move. In fact, 2 of the doors were always left open and 2 were always closed. There was one door I never ever saw closed and I was about 10 years old when I saw the other door closed for the first time. I was well into my teens before I saw the 2 closed doors ever opened.
1951 Oldsmobile sedan in the garage
In front of our old garage was a nice grassy area we used to use for football tossing and baseball game of Catch. In this backyard area of a very long total yard, was a room we called the “Rumpus Room” or recreation room. The 50s used the term Rumpus Room in So Cal, so it was called that, despite others laughing at the name. (RUMPUS: a noisy disturbance; a commotion.) So these rooms were used for an extra recreation room separated from the main house and far enough away to allow families to create a “rumpus.”
Rumpus Room (40s-50s rec room) with opening French Doors and casement windows…
As pre-teens, we used that rear yard rumpus room like a gathering spot for our friends. Birthday parties and parties in general were had in that room with opening casement windows. But, by 1959, as teenagers, my brother decided that it was becoming tiresome to do engine work inside of our family two car garage. We set up a well-supported hoist on one side of the garage.
So, when our dad pulled his big Buick sedan out in the morning to go to work, we now had access to the other side of the garage for working on our cars. It was fun at first, but we had to clean up everything every time we knew our dad was coming home from work. He did not want to leave his Buick sedans outside until the dew settled on his car. So, we had to take apart the supports and hoist, put away the jacks and tools before he came home.
So, he decided to cut away the front opening French doors, and several feet of the casement windows to create a large opening for a swing up garage door. In 1959, there were no prefab garage doors. The companies that did garage doors made the door as per opening. We decided that we had access to quality lumber and knew how to cut and measure. So, we took out the casement windows and the two French doors. Then it was a matter of removing the remaining support posts for the windows.
Once the opening was cut out and the support brace edging was in place, now, we could make the plywood door with 2x4 framework. When we got the door straight and the mechanicals on each side, we could actually bolt it onto the frame of the opening. At the time, we thought nothing about the weight of the 2x4 frame and outdoor plywood. For us, that door went up easily and sealed up the opening well. Our 1940 Willys Coupe could roll in until it was sitting sideways facing East. The door shut nicely and the whole thing was safe and secure.
The only problem was that the interior framing from the original Rumpus Room vaulted ceilings were too low to support any engine hoists, even if we made girders higher up. It was easier to still go back to our family 2 car garage and use those high supported bracing posts for our engine removal and installs.
The rumpus room garage work space was fine for both of us. Everything fit nicely and there was even room for our dad’s huge fishing pole collection, reels and various equipment, including an outboard motor on a stand at the other end of the room. But, if the weather was poor, like raining, the open garage door was supported and a canvas tarp was stretched out for expanded room to work outside on the concrete pad.
Our neighbor’s daughter always came over for a visit while we were working on anything. But, when we started the 671 SBC motor, she ran away yelling for help from our mom.
After our hot rod days and drag racing involvement was over, the whole section of hot rod stuff was taken over by my fledgling surfboard business. Then after we moved away for our own families, we found out that over the years of bad weather, the plywood that was sealed, became a log and was so heavy that our mom could not open the door that we made. So, a certified garage door company put in a lightweight metal door on both the original 2 car garage and this homemade opening for our hot rod builds.
By the way, the certified garage door company manager/installer said that the construction of the opening from the casement windows was done in a top notch way and he was happy not to have to make any changes, except to put in a lightweight metal door. Kudos to a couple of teenage hot rod kids and their abilities to do creative stuff.
The sad thing was despite making that lightweight door install for her access, my mom did not go into that room again. She told me it gave her bad memories of my late brother and the hot rods we built there. So plus and minuses for our project from 1959-60.
In 1965, we visited some friends who lived in those old very tall multi-story houses with the tiny garages in S.F. The neighborhood was full of those small doors and the drawback was that they were very narrow, even for the newer sedans and sporty cars. But it was better than parking on those streets of San Francisco.
Great garage door memories, everyone. Below, you'll see one of the photos I took with expired 35mm film on the last day we had the old doors in place.
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