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Post Bonneville - the Way Home

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by TomT, Jun 24, 2013.

  1. Malcolm
    Joined: Feb 9, 2006
    Posts: 7,615

    from Nebraska

    Thanks for the updates, Tom! I sure wish I was out there with you guys.
    Safe travels and we'll see you later this week in Joplin.
  2. Tom, saw you cruising the Nugget and the pits, man, that flathead just purrs!

    Best of luck on your trip home.

  3. uncle max
    Joined: Jan 19, 2006
    Posts: 905

    uncle max

    The only thing that could possibly make this thread more entertaining would be to be there in person. Wait a minute... I WAS there!
    Good to finally meet the JOKER!
  4. Day 11 - before I get started on today's events, I need to make a correction. OlRon did not build the engine (at one time) that is in Keith's 560 race car - sorry 'bout that. OlRon built an engine for Keith maybe 10-12 years ago that I believe now resides in the Bones 40 sedan delivery. Sorry 'bout the mix up. The engine in the 560 race car is a Y-block ....

    Today was a beautiful day and the salt flats were quite serene after the long weekend of racing and the hub bub that goes along with it. But, all is not always well on the salt when it comes to racing.

    Keith's 560 car made a 188.5 mph pass - still more to get with it. On the next pass there was a puff at one point and the car only went 177. After returning to the pits and investigating, the timing had jumped and put a hole in one of the pistons - so he did 177 on just 7 cylinders. Keith is unfortunately done for this year.

    The 8892 car got another engine and did a 177 and 177.5 w/Peter driving, and a 166 pass with another person at the wheel. The car is running pretty well and they hope to make many more runs with it tomorrow.

    The flathead roadster got it's new clutch disk and is ready to roll tomorrow morning. The first run will tell the tale as to how many subsequent runs there will be afterward. They are hoping for a total of 4 runs in the car starting tomorrow - we'll see how things go.

    Wayno ran just a tad under 150 in his flattie bellytank today and he is very, very excited about it. However it came at a cost - something broke in the rear (we think a tooth on the ring gear) just at the end of the run but he had not yet opened things up to find out exactly what the problem is as we parted for the starting line again. Stay tuned ....

    Chuck and I addressed a couple issues on the roadster today - we finally put together another carb for it and it runs a lot better but we have a sticking throttle linkage from time to time we'll have to investigate tomorrow. It looks like the old carb had a partially stuck choke causing it to run richer than normal, although it did have the same jet size as the one that replaced it.

    We've met some wonderful people while here, and three especially great guys, 2 out of the Pueblo, Co area, Bob Padilla (jbob1944) and Pete Striker (petesjunk), two of the funniest people you are ever going to meet, with whom we have now made a life-long friendship. And then there's Uncle Max - what a great person. With all three of these guys it was like we've known each other all our lives. Stay well fellas and I hope our paths cross again soon ....

    Only 2 days left before we leave the salt - unreal how fast the times goes when you don't want it to ....

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    Last edited: Aug 18, 2013
  5. Thanks, Mick - I appreciate it!
  6. Thanks, Malcolm - see you in Joplin ....
  7. Thanks and living out of the trunk of the car at the bend wasn't all that bad this year with the weather as nice as its been.

    Thanks for the great writeup for those of us still stuck workin'! Enjoy it all, you earned it.

    Thank you!

    Love the updates and pics Tom keep em coming. Merlin

    Thanks, Harry - I will do my best - see you Thurs/Fri in Charlotte this year?

    Tom,you guys are living the dream!

    Thank you for taking the time to document and photograph your journey,,stay safe and have fun! HRP

    HRP - thank you and no problem - I'll see you next year on the all 32 run - promise!

    Nice looking car. Got pics. Of it - altereddart

  8. Tom Congrads. Looks like a good time is have by all. I wish I was there.
    Very well docm't trip report. Have a safe trip back home. Tony.
    Joined: Nov 12, 2012
    Posts: 112


    Tony AKA " the Joker " cause he can't stop smiling really has the story backwards.
    Keith never had a flathead in his coupe
    the y-block that Keith races was built by Ted Eaton from Texas
    The flathead in the forty was built by Jim" Nitti Notti " Fleming
    the flathead we are running in the 29 was also built by Ted Eaton
    the flathead in the Poteet 55 car was originally built by Ron and after 75'000 was rebuilt by Jim
    A little much to keep track of when your smiling as much as Tony but who can blame him - It's Bonneville , it's speed week , it's a 5000 mile road trip in a 32 hot rod running with over a dozen other hot rods , it's meeting hot rodders along the way all across the country and most of all it's what it's all about
  10. Thanks for clarification - and you are absolutely right - I have not stopped smiling since the day I started this trip! Thanks RB ....
  11. TomT -

    Great thread! ... Thanks for sharing your adventure with us!

    Safe travels on your trip back home!
    Joined: Jan 16, 2013
    Posts: 88


    Really enjoying your thread, thanks for the pictures, made my day. Retiring end of September, hope to get to the salt, to see it first hand.
  13. Merlin
    Joined: Apr 9, 2005
    Posts: 2,546

    from Inman, SC

    When? During GG's?
  14. Just got home and catching up. 14 hours to Casper yesterday fighting an issue that turned out to be a plugged Cat converter. Damn things only lasted 264,000 miles!!!!!!! Nice meeting you, thanks for making it to the BBQ, we had a blast! I will put up a thank you post after I catch up.
  15. BrerHair
    Joined: Jan 30, 2007
    Posts: 4,460


    Spectacular trip, story, thread, and pics! Thanks Tom!
  16. Yes - I'll be there Thurs and for the party Fri night then I'm off to the Moonshine Run in Ga that Sat-Sun .... at least that's the plan, anyway ...
  17. Merlin
    Joined: Apr 9, 2005
    Posts: 2,546

    from Inman, SC

    Cool so far we're planning to do Goodguys this year if all goes well.
  18. LSR 2909
    Joined: May 10, 2012
    Posts: 605

    LSR 2909
    from Colorado

  19. Day 12 – well, it was the final full day of racing for the RBs and it was a pretty good day for all I would say – not stellar but pretty good.

    First off, the flathead roadster made several passes - Justin (sinticket) @ 136, Andy (thunderbirdesq) @ 142, and there was one other run but I do not know the who/MPH. This car still has clutch problems so it had to be started the old fashioned way – 2 guys pushing it in second and then you start the car. Car ran really strong but I think it needs more gears or a different rear gear with this motor - unfortunately we are out of time to find out. One more pass tomorrow I think and then the motor comes out.

    The 8892 car made multiple passes, all within the 168-174 range. It’s running strong and shifting really well (it had shift linkage problems part of the day) and each driver was making good, hard runs – it’s a game of fractions and no one had a really perfect run where all the stars aligned. It will make a pass or two tomorrow before finishing for this season.

    The motorcycle made its debut – Richie had to make his first pass from 125-149 to get his one license – he ran 135 – and then stay under 175 his second pass – he ran 168 – to get the subsequent license. He’ll make a run or two tomorrow to see how fast he can go with the bike – perhaps 200 but we’ll see.

    We did see Wayno today and he is finished for this year w/rearend problems. He was happy, though, reaching 150 – way to go, Wayno!

    Really great conditions for racing today but unfortunately they shut down one course – we heard, but cannot confirm, that one starter was not feeling well but we cannot confirm that. Also, when they shut it down there were few people trying to make a pass on that course – afterwards, course 3 had 2 lines of 15 deep or so of racers. So, as nice as the conditions were, it took some time between runs. But, the starters on course 3 did their best to keep things moving.

    Due to the above we were at the starting line most of the day. Today and yesterday it really got hot around 4 PM – 100+ today, close to it yesterday. I must have had 2 gallons of water today ….

    We pack things up tomorrow starting around noon and the Bonneville portion of our adventure will be done. But, we’re off to the HAMB drags in Joplin, Starbird’s museum, cruising on Rt 66 through Missouri and Illinois, a stop @ Speedway Motors, Bubba’s Ignition shop, and the Indy Speedway museum. So, stay tuned …..

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    Last edited: Aug 18, 2013
  20. JM 35 Sedan
    Joined: Feb 2, 2012
    Posts: 36

    JM 35 Sedan

    Tom, thanks for keeping us in the loop on your adventure. It's been great reading your posts here and Chucks on Fordbarn. Safe trip on your way back!!
  21. Day 13 – I’m behind in my posts. Sorry ‘bout that … So who said racing was over yesterday? NOT !!!!! Seems nearly everyone was out on the salt on the RB team. The 8892 car made a pass on track 3 w/Becca behind the wheel and she did a 172 mph pass before catching a plane home. Then the big cahoona, the man of the hour, the myth, the legend that is Ken of the RBs was on track 2 with the flattie roadster. For whatever reason, the clutch is not working properly so they had to shift it more by “feel” than anything else. They pushed started Ken in 2nd but he could not get it into 3rd and had to pull off the course. They decided to do another run, starting in 3rd this time so as to reduce the number of shifts. Ken got a great start and was up there in RPM but again had a tough time getting it into 4th which he finally did for a 138 mph run. Now, the car was at 111 mph at the 2 mile pole when he got it in 4th. At the 2 ¼ mile pole he was doing 136 mph and finished at 138 for the 3 mile course. The engine started to show its potential by picking up 25mph in 4th gear in just a ¼ mile. With no clutch and out of time, they called it a wrap – it will all have to wait until next year. Now, of course, Ken was describing this in great detail and his driving prowess. I told him he should leave the driving to his pit crew! They never missed a shift nor did they have to pull off the course, and Andy did the best with the flattie @ 142 mph! Of course I had to bust his chops but there is a lot to do normally without the clutch issue – now throw that in and there’s much that can go awry ….

    So, back to the pits we went to start packing up when there was another surprise. Carrie Combs of Overhauling fame was talking to BillyO, the owner of the 8892 car, and she wanted to get her rookie license in a home-grown hot rod. So, they settled on a plan, she was run through her paces by the SCTA officials so she could make a pass, and off to track 3 we went along with her entire crew. Now I say we because Chuck ad I were asked to help be her pit crew – oh yeah, baby! I have not seen her on TV, just photos on the net, but Chuck has. He was all over the fact that she is even cuter in person and I have to totally agree! When all was said and done, she got off to a good start and made a 122 MPH pass to get her rookie license. After further discussion on the conclusion of her run, she wanted to get her next license where you have to stay under 175 but be close to it. Now, she is no novice to fast cars and was totally up to the task. When she was up ready to run her second pass the Gene Winfield entry was right next to her. BillyO pointed that out to her and said that this is what it is all about. She was in awe and totally got it. She took off and had a great run @ 172.3. Bart, a member of the 8892 crew, then made a pass himself and he came in at 172.4, just enough to edge her out. Her goal it to run 555 in a jet powered streamliner but she wanted her start in a home-grown hot rod. Now that’s my kind of girl. All in all it was a great experience, she IS really hot but also quite nice, friendly, and not stuck up at all. Her crew was great and we even used her “borrowed” Mercedes SUV to tow the race car! Now THAT was a sight!

    Once we got back to the pits we had some pictures with Carrie and then she took off, and then we had a lot of packing up to do, loading up of the race cars, clean up, etc, etc, all before the track area was shut down by 8PM. Also, our Food Lady’s blue goose had front wheel bearing problems that had to be sorted out in order to pull the one trailer off the salt. We worked our butts off and got ‘er done at the stroke of 8. We all had dinner together and we had a great time just talking about the entire day/week on the salt. These are really true, genuine people, the nicest folks around and Chuck and I were honored to be part of the crew with them.

    Chuck and I then washed off the car @ 11:30 PM or so and got back to the hotel @ midnight – pooped, excited about the day, the week, and very sad to see it end. There are so many things to say about the beauty, the lure, the attraction, etc, etc regarding the salt – it’s all been said before but if you have not been there you would not really understand what I was saying anyway.

    The first day I said we were on the salt and the salt was on us. I will end my Bonneville experience with this – we were on the salt and now the salt is part of us, it is within us.

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    Last edited: Aug 18, 2013
  22. Day 14 - we showered, shaved, dressed and conked out around 2 AM, setting the alarm for 4 AM to get out early so we can make the HAMB drags in Joplin by around 6 PM Friday. We drove from 4 AM until 8PM, a total of 15 hours in my roadster (we lost an hour due to time change). Yep, we are really hard core tough hot rodders and we are BEAT! The weather was crystal clear but oh, the wind - it just shoved us from pillar to post - that was the worst part, really. We ran a bit harder, 70+ most of the way and the little car performed well. I've got a dozen new "badges of honor" (rock chips) but hey, I built it to drive and it's not like I have a $10K paint job - far from it!

    We may hit rain tomorrow or at least we hope we do to help wash off the underside of the car. I will have to take apart the interior and clean everything out once I'm home no doubt. We met up with one of the Inliners we had met at their Cookout at the KKOA campground and he almost didn't recognize the car without the all salt on it!

    Tomorrow we're off to Speedway Motors early and we are very saddened by the passing of Bill Smith's wife. At the very least we willo offer our condolences in person and purchase some parts. We'll also see if we can "beg" a tour or any portion there of. One of the Smith boys is good friends with Pete Stringer, an X race car driver whom we befriended while in Bonneville - perhaps we'll at least get a glimpse. If we can't, no problem .....

    We hope to make Joplin by 6PM tomorrow give or take ..... see y'all there!

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    Last edited: Aug 18, 2013
  23. No problem, John - :)
  24. Thanks Tom!
  25. hotrodderhaag
    Joined: Jan 22, 2007
    Posts: 2,117


    great posts. great pictures. your living out a dream of so many guys on here... taking the trip to bonneville..... lucky! hoping next year i will be making that run myself
  26. Day 15 - we made it to Speedway about 9 AM, bought a bunch of stuff, tried to get a private tour but we could not, even mentioning a good friend of one of the Smith boys Chuck and I made at the Salt. So, it was off to Joplin.

    We were running along great until about 60 miles from Joplin - felt like half the engine was not getting any gas. We stopped, and it cleared up, so we went on. 100 yds later, same problem. So, we pulled off the hood and then the top off of the one carb, There looked to be a chunk of something in the bowl, big enough to block one of the jets. With that removed, we were on our way again. Funny how it came into play then and not on the previous day's 900 mile run ....

    We got to the host hotel right around 5 PM and the place was hopping! A lot of really serious iron has shown up so tomorrow should be a really fun day. And I, for the first time, met Denise - what a lady and such a lot of fun to be with. She actually helped me out big time as my packet for the drags didn't show before I left on this trip. Since the rules are no packet, no entry she was able to track down Ryan, told him of the situation, and then me where he would be - we got things squared away so we are all set to attend the drags tomorrow. Thank you , Denise!!

    I also passed tech so I will be making at least one pass tomorrow. Chuck and I are touting ourselves as the Rolling Bones "Slow" division (vs teh High Speed Division), better known as the Slow Bones which you already know. Don't worry Ken and Keith, we'll do you proud - I promise we'll post the slowest time! Caught up w/Malcolm, one or two who came from the Salt like us, and a couple of other guys we already knew from the HAMB and some of the stops made by the RB circus on the way out.

    Some bits of trivia:
    - we've stopped 42 times for gas so far at an average of $25 per fill up
    - we are getting 15 MPG
    - we average about 110-20 miles between fill ups - it sounds small but it's good to get out of the roadster that often and stretch
    - we have no more room in the trunk - period - after our Speedway Motors stop
    - if we buy anything more an equivalent item must go!

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    Last edited: Aug 18, 2013
  27. uncle max
    Joined: Jan 19, 2006
    Posts: 905

    uncle max

    I must say, you guys are my new heroes!
  28. bmita
    Joined: Dec 9, 2007
    Posts: 135


    sounds like you two are having one hell of a good time. post some pics from the drags. been wanting to go and it is on the bucket list. be safe you two.
  29. Day 16 - WOW! What a day! You could not have asked, begged, borrowed, or stolen a better day at the drags. Weather was perfect - 75-80, low humidity, sun w/some white fluffy clouds - Mo-Kan Dragway is a great old-time dragway that really brings back the memories of going to the drags when I was a kid, and man the action was super! There were probably 200+ cars running, the crowd was huge, the stands packed - just an unreal day!

    Well, the long awaited moment came and I ran my car - I was certainly not the slowest car so I do not take home that trophy. My reaction time was not too good, .5650, but that was mainly to first start the car at a roll and then take off - I did 65.03 mph and an ET of 20.85, had a blast, and was dusted badly by another flathead car! LOL!

    Denise did well on her first run but she got dusted on her second and ended up doing push/pull car duty for one of the other racers the rest of the day. There were some super cars running, and even more showing - I'll try and get some pics up , promise ...

    Malcolm here on the HAMB did really well with his sweet little roadster, and I must say that there were many, many more home-built cars running and doing very well. I do believe the hobby is very much alive and well in the mid-west and the new young guns are leading the way.

    Joplin is really a hot rod town with all types, shapes and sizes of hot rods running around. Some great places to eat and stay - and, BTW, the Holiday Inn host hotel is a perfect setting for this event. Plenty of rooms, an adjacent Convention center that could accommodate all the the trailers and such, great breakfast, you can walk to all kinds of restaurants, rooms are really nice - nice going Ryan for finding such a great place!

    Tomorrow we are off to the Starbird museum - another great day in the making!

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    Last edited: Aug 18, 2013
  30. forty1fordpickup
    Joined: Aug 20, 2008
    Posts: 289


    This whole trip has been a blast. You need to get on down to Joplin for the next HAMB Drags. It is a real good time.

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