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Art & Inspiration Reality Bites

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by Ryan, May 3, 2017.

  1. Down here it's considered or at least it WAS the suburbs, not sure what the boom is with Orange County is but it's here. Growing up I've only had "old" cars, really my first car was only 14 yrs old in '87 but the body style and technologies made it feel old.....not like the 2003 vs 2017 models of today. Anyhow everytime I bought another car it was older then the last (some hot rods, some stock), they were all my daily drivers at one point (my commute ranged from 5-30 miles one way). Sure I get hot and sweaty with the vinyl in the summer, have leaks and marginal defrost during the winter, but I can't stop's in my blood, brain and soul. I love the smells, the sights and the quirks of's like a time machine to me, in my minds eye I can picture a past I might be a part of. Right now I'm riding in a van pool to work and though the A/C is nice during the summer it's basically a soleless box that's saving me a little money. What it's making me do is want to drive around every weekend night (I hate driving during the day) and even some week nights (30+ mile cruise to nowhere). When I was driving farther in traffic everyday it did suck a little, having to leave earlier to warm the car up, to defrost or clean the windshield, to stay in the slower lanes...but it was fun. As I get older I notice it's harder to daily drive an old car while building another car, there's no room for regular maintenance (plus in my case regular maintenance of 3 new cars, 2 old cars plus 1 old car customer...the new cars are mom and g/f) and the fact I stay up way too late and get up way too early for my taste.

    I still drive in to work fairly often and I'm still driving them after work to get parts, store, etc......but I haven't hit the safety wall yet, drum brakes, no seat belts, single tail light, single wiper all still seem ok to me :).
  2. gimpyshotrods
    Joined: May 20, 2009
    Posts: 19,854


    I have a hardware design job. I have to be where the facility is.

    My need to live with people who are not threatening to kill me on a regular basis is not negotiable.
    Steve Ray likes this.
  3. Jive-Bomber
    Joined: Aug 21, 2001
    Posts: 3,525


    Should have left the 964 more 'street friendly' instead of going RS clone! IMHO, Air cooled 911's are the closest thing to a modern era hot rod you'll get- Analog steering, real feedback, great sound, and tons of fun!
    MUNDSTER and typo41 like this.
  4. catdad49
    Joined: Sep 25, 2005
    Posts: 5,557


    Just learned that we live in most dangerous city in Va.. so driving the Model A in city traffic may be the least of my problems! There's always something to be "thankful" for. Boss, feel your pain, drove my 66 Chevy truck in tunnel traffic for almost ten yrs and I would do again ( I think)!
  5. stimpy
    Joined: Apr 16, 2006
    Posts: 3,547


    I agree with this , or build a building out back and keep a modern parts runner vehicle , where I am at you have to have a vehicle to keep up with traffic or you get run over , or run into when they gawk . even my brothers late 70s truck they gawk at like where that come from ??? and he drives litterlly foot to the floorboard . ( and complains about the 9 mpg while cruising at 80 mph ) as for A/c buy a old style truck fan[​IMG]

    they are period correct as our farm trucks were equipped with them back in the 1960s, and they are better than stagnent air from sitting still
  6. D.Lee
    Joined: Oct 21, 2015
    Posts: 170


    I do about 100 miles a day in my 56 Chevrolet pickup. OG drivetrain with a 65 model 12 bolt rear with 3.08s. She's done me right for 5 years so far, I never plan to own a modern car again.
  7. stimpy
    Joined: Apr 16, 2006
    Posts: 3,547


    when a new car cost as much as what I spent on my place in 1995 , its sick , My O/t DD was 21K in 95 costs $51k ( which is what I spent on my place in 95 also ) to replace it and its a single cab single rear wheel truck .and I have to go diesel to match it . and I have people complain about I am too high on a $2K used car I have . with whats now considered low miles ( 130K )
  8. blackout78666
    Joined: Jul 3, 2009
    Posts: 583


    Hahahaha. Your post made me laugh. Staring at the temp gauge in traffic is one of the MOST STRESSFUL parts about driving an "'old car" also 90% of the other drivers don't think twice about cutting you off, braking HARD in front of you, and view your POS as a nuisance. Driving in the city in an old car or a big truck SUCKS! And as for Austin well, as cool as a city it is, I better stop now.
  9. stimpy
    Joined: Apr 16, 2006
    Posts: 3,547


    with your electronics savy and education , buy a scanner and step on over to the dark side of autos , lots of money to be made ..
  10. I'm adding an electric fan to my Ford this weekend, it runs 180 unless I'm stopped or at a crawl on hot days. This will be for my peace of mind and take some stress off me. My brakes are front discs and a dual manual master. Last September I had someone blow a red light in front of me and I had to panic stop, it stopped straight and true. It took some getting used to after driving a 2012 car all the time. I get people honking at me though, they think an old car is slow and in their way, then I blast around them. I drove it to work today since tomorrow is going to be el crapo.
  11. Schwanke Engines
    Joined: Jun 12, 2014
    Posts: 784

    Schwanke Engines

    This is why all our OT vehicles are slavaged titles. Fix them up for a fraction of the cost. Or I buy stuff with a boat load of miles with good exteriors and fix the drive line up. Who can afford a $70,000.00 1/2 ton Chevy pickup.

    Sent from my XT1585 using The H.A.M.B. mobile app
    raven and typo41 like this.
  12. stimpy
    Joined: Apr 16, 2006
    Posts: 3,547


    yea in some states you can do this but here in the eastern California republic of Illinois or the state of Chicago , its hard to license a salvaged vehicle , unless it rebuilt at a licensed facility ( a law that was passed after Katrina and the submerged cars ) and inspected ( some insurance companies will not insure them ) once the "salvage" title is applied by the state its almost impossible to get it retitled for road use here .
    Joined: Jun 3, 2005
    Posts: 8,577


    I miss the old clunker life. Used to be all I drove cuz it was all I could afford. I plan to drive the wheels off my 39 sedan once done. Not to rub it in Ryan, just a similar desire. I freely admit to being a version of spoiled little bitch regarding traffic. I've lived the rural life now for just under 15 yrs. Traffic is one of the few things that raises the hackels of my personality. I often ask those north of me how they do it daily, ask myself how I did it "back then" too. Survival technique that sometimes work and patitnce but can be quite rewarding, make space. Keep just enough distance to roll without the brake pedal, as in slow but steady. The errant asshole lane swapper will take the spot now n then but stay true to the plan. As the room increases the speed raises, then others follow suit, before long you're rolling at a respectable 30 instead of 3 (!), but it might take a mile or so. It works. The worst of the worst? Trailering in that shit. The average motorized dumb fuck thinks you can stop as fast as his import shit box. I wish my truck was junk sometimes, ya know;)
    TerrytheK likes this.
  14. Hot Rods Ta Hell
    Joined: Apr 20, 2008
    Posts: 4,430

    Hot Rods Ta Hell

    When I was 25, I drove a 30 year old "old car". It was fine, but I remember dependability problems, overheating, electrical issues and dealing with drum brakes (like when they get wet and really don't want to work). Now, 30 years later, my older bones would probably want that same car as a daily driver to have an updated suspension, disc brakes, A/C, auto trans. Now it becomes more Street Rod like and less old car.
    As for the run for lumber, I hate traffic and crowds, so I make the run on a Thursday or Friday night-8:00PM+, which sets me up with everything I need, pre-staged at the house Saturday AM.
    It's either that or 6;00 AM opening on the weekends to beat the crowds, box of donuts on the way home. The stores are wide open, fully stocked, plenty of help if you have questions. I choose Lowe's over Home Depot, because Home Depot seems to always have aisles closed for forklift traffic (no graveyard shift doing the stocking?)
    I do this for any shopping including groceries. In and out with a pick list, working a one time path from one side of the store to the other.
  15. John Starr
    Joined: Sep 14, 2016
    Posts: 115

    John Starr

    One of the TV shows produced where I work is Jay Leno's Garage (not the early youtube variant). Rarely do I see him pull up in the same car twice. On day he parked a pristine Pantera in the tightest spot in our lot. The receptionist warned him the car would get ding'd there. He said "Eh, so what." I joked "Don't worry, I'll steal it before it gets ding'd". He gave the same response. I took a closer look at the Pantera; it was not pristine. You could see this thing got regular use/abuse.
    Squablow likes this.
  16. typo41
    Joined: Jul 8, 2011
    Posts: 2,572

    Member Emeritus

    Not to stray from Ryan, but I was lucky enough to visit the Big Dog Garage (Jay's place). And he drives his classics into the ground. When we were there, Jay's guys were showing us the latest car on the rack and what Jay did to it, and what was needing work after that one. But then again, he has the wherewithal to have them fixed, but he does drive them.
    John Starr likes this.
  17. I hear ya. I was just chatting with someone about that.

    The Mrs. flew me into San Francisco Airport to go to a party in Oakland a couple of years back. my flight landed in time for the evening rush. The guys that picked me up were in an old econoline and decided it would be fun for me to drive. So I drove from the airport ( 101 @ SFI is my kryptonite) to a place in Oakland. At the end of my nightmare stood my sis and lots of very old friends. My sis says, "You let him drive? HE CAN'T DRIVE!!! " I was frazzeled, perfect form.;)
    49ratfink likes this.
  18. Atwater Mike
    Joined: May 31, 2002
    Posts: 10,795

    Atwater Mike

    Atwater. Moved here in 1989, from San Jose. Liked it over here, we'd come every year to the 'Motate to Merced' days at Merced Fairgrounds, some nice down to earth rodders hereabouts.
    Atwater...6 miles North of Merced, country styled small town. Liked the occasional tumbleweeds blowing down Atwater Blvd.

    Made the move in two trips, over the hill in my trusty '55 F100, 350/350 and a 3.78 rear...pulling a 20 foot flat trailer back and forth, plus cars all apart and some engines...
    Four local moves, then we bought our place. 1/4 acre in the 'country', added a driveway opposite the 2.5 car garage.
    A few years later, wife Joey did all the tin metal assembly on a new 25' X 25' shop out back.
    Coming together, front and side have 16 ft. rollup doors, and 5 (five) T's, in various stages. Working on cupboards, and a bench: (my frame jig converts to a heavy bench by sliding the top onto it, but there's usually a frame in the way...)

    My F100 is still my daily, (has been for 40 years!) but am working slowly on a '54 Ford Coupe, powered by fresh 406, both courtesy of my son Rich. (richinsanazay on here) Not to replace my truck, but just a 'nice car'. That will blow the doors off Chevrolets. :D
    Traffic is heavier locally than it was, and there are 4 new stop lights...(grrrrr) :mad:
    Eagle Field is 18 minutes away, if I press MOON pedal excessively...but worth it, as my 'patina'd' F100 is always directed to the #1 spot in 'show parking'. Life is good...:cool:
    Bitch about it as I do, I wouldn't live anywhere else! ;)
    warbird1, olscrounger and jnaki like this.
  19. stimpy
    Joined: Apr 16, 2006
    Posts: 3,547


    your in the wrong business if they charge that much ( I see a old fleet of tractors and fruehauf flatbeds in your future ) , My local lumberyard ( yes a real one, not a box store ) will only charge me a buck a mile for anything under $500 after that its .50 and if its over $1K its free up to 50 miles ...but they also have full time drivers they try to keep busy and often my stuff will be included on a bigger load going my way , but I have had them deliver only my stuff .

    hey there goes ryan now !! ![​IMG]
  20. surfcaliforniasurf
    Joined: Sep 17, 2007
    Posts: 402


    Got my license on my 16th b day. My daily/only cars: 55 chevy wagon. Then a 1959 suburban. And for the last 14 years my 1959 wagon. All I have ever known!
    Dan Hay and bchrismer like this.
  21. Johnny Gee
    Joined: Dec 3, 2009
    Posts: 9,794

    Johnny Gee
    from Downey, Ca

    Reality is, we're a small group. That's the bite.
    bobss396 and squirrel like this.
  22. Mr T body
    Joined: Nov 2, 2005
    Posts: 2,198

    Mr T body
    Alliance Vendor
    from BHC AZ

    Drove an old(er) car as a daily for 4 years in OC, finally sold it and use the quad cab for a daily. Between traffic, heat (yes, I enjoy A/C), feeling like a target and wearing out increasingly more difficult to find parts, I threw in the towel. What started out as fun wound up being more stressful and less fun than a modern driver. I build 'em to enjoy 'em and if that means weekends and evenings so be it. If it's no longer fun, don't do it or do it when it IS.
  23. Deuced Up!
    Joined: Feb 8, 2008
    Posts: 4,097

    Deuced Up!

    How about a roof rack for the Porsche....:eek::D
    29bowtie likes this.
  24. Modern transmissions, stock engine rebuilds and big radiators solve many of these problems.
  25. jnaki
    Joined: Jan 1, 2015
    Posts: 6,838



    Reality bites is a great description of what makes you (anyone) do what you do in any situation. Reality in cars is a great example. In 1958-65, my 58 Impala was the center of the world as far as driving around in So Cal. Throw in a 40 Ford Sedan Delivery for the surf escapades and trips made the whole teenage years outstanding. To me, that was reality.

    But, in 1965, both were gone to the reality that I needed something to get me to college, some 600+ miles away and a good 7 hour drive, one way. (+++hours: home for the holidays, surf trip vacations, etc.) Sure, both of those earlier cars took me easily 600+ miles, but not for something as important as going to school for the future.

    A new 65 El Camino took over the reliability job of consistent driving without any major repairs on my part. 125,000 miles later in 1972, we sold that old reliable workhorse for $600. As the years went by, we had another foray into our 2nd 40 Ford Sedan Delivery, but that had to be sold to buy our first real family oriented house. A real, "REALITY" wake up call.


    So, that showed us that reality calls, demands, and gets in the way of our pursuits. Life happens and we had to adjust to it the best way possible. You guys that still drive your old hot rods, there is an envy in me that won’t go away, but again, life calls, right now.
  26. I prefer the Ford over my OT cars by far. In bad weather the Ford is parked, I have had it out on very cold days though, the heat works great. It stays home if I have to park it out of sight for a long time. The number of us is dwindling, most people don't even notice an old car going by. But cool when those that appreciate it give me a big smile.
  27. I wonder how many hot rods I could build if I had just a tenth of a percent of the money auto makers, governments, et al, are spending to develop vehicles and highway systems that drive themselves. (?)

    I'm having flashbacks to Texas in those days before A/C, crumple zones, safety glass, seat belts, multiple airbags, speed rated tires and a lawyer behind every bush. Vehicles were built for transportation, getting you from point A to point B. (There were some "Rich Man" cars that were wonders of the upholstery craft and with chrome altars for dashboards, though.) Things like comfort and safety were fleeting things, if there were any at all, that came and went with the latest ad concepts. In the hot Texas summers "air conditioning" was reversing the vent "wing" windows all the way to blast a quantity of hot, dry air to hopefully keep up with the sweat production. There were no open beer laws and/or enforcement so it was possible to take some "comfort" along for the ride in your choice of tin cans or glass long necks and quarts. Soda pop was the only other option.

    The safety and comfort of kids was never part of any equation when it was time to purchase a vehicle. Kids walked. There were no rides to school or to soccer practice. If a kid was late, he just walked faster. Kids were like luggage.... you just needed a space for 'em in case you had to take some along on a trip. The only meaning "safety" had to a kid was anticipating when Dad, in the driver's seat, was about to spit out the window so the kid in back could duck in time to avoid a face full of blow-back particles.
    Last edited: May 6, 2017
    Yamagrant likes this.
  28. TerrytheK
    Joined: Sep 12, 2004
    Posts: 974


    Very good read and some interesting viewpoints here.
    I too live in a small town in a rural area. Any larger trade center is a strong hour’s drive away. For a few years in the 1990’s I commuted once a week to a job about 120 miles away, many of those trips taken in the ‘39 Ford sedan we had then. That commute was fun because of what I drove.
    The '55 I have now has enough rough edges that I don’t worry about parallel parking or heading down a gravel road. I don't drive it daily, but drive it whenever I can and the more I drive it the more comfortable I get with it. So, as long as I drive it within its limitations I figure I‘ll be okay.
    But as noted, metro area traffic and distracted driving are rapidly outpacing older technology and I’d be nervous too if I had to spend a lot of time dealing with that.
    Bottom line: When it comes to driving an old car, I’ll do what I feel comfortable doing. To those of you who do drive ‘em on a daily basis - rock on!!
    Last edited: May 6, 2017
  29. SLAMIT
    Joined: Sep 9, 2002
    Posts: 929


    My daily driver for the last 4 years has been a 1970 BMW 2002. Its warmed up a bit, though it still has a carburetor, it has a manual trans a lightweight flywheel, no a/c stiff suspension and worn out seats. Every time I drive it I think I should probably be more of an adult and drive something a bit more sophisticated and suited to my 90 mile roundtrip over a windy mountain highway commute. And then there are the days when I have to take a customer's Audi home for a road test and although there are some really fun and nice newer cars to drive, Every time I get back in my 2002 I fall in love all over again and remember why I choose to "deal" with my old commuter.

    I have driven many old cars as daily drivers as well as some modern and I know that every time I always go back to the "Vintage" car for a daily.
    next up is preparing our 34 sedan for daily use.
    or maybe my 49 Fleetline??????
    bobss396 likes this.
  30. Forgot to add when my '60 Elco was the daily (for 6-7yrs) it would NEVER overheat......even in idling traffic at the Pomona swapmeet at the height of summer. I found a 4 core radiator at the junkyard and put it in...never got above 190 deg again.

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