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Share your fondest influential auto-related memories from childhood

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by Rickybop, May 28, 2010.

  1. MudLover
    Joined: Mar 26, 2010
    Posts: 10


    As a youngin' my best friends pa was heavily into various forms of circle track racing so I'd spend my Fridays after school with them getting the car and trailer prepped. I spent many an hour beating fenders, changing tires, fetching tools and sneaking beers and gazing at titty girl posters hangin' in the shop.
    Friday and Saturday nights were spent at the track. I can still taste the smell of burning fuel and rubber. The burgers weren't bad either. I loved the spectator drags the most. I saw a brand spankin' new 'vette hit the wall and come apart in front of my face. Luckily the guy walked away. His head was hung low. For a short time they ran a figure 8 "bump to pass" that was a gas. I got to run quarter midgets a couple of times but I was a bit much of a chicken foot to have fun.
    But the ride that sealed the deal was in the tow rig...A bright orange '68 Chev. The 3 of us were coming back from a pizza run and my buddies pa set a $20 on the dash and told us if we could grab it we could have it...We didn't get. That beast ripped outa the hole so hard I think I left a pucker burn on that seat!
    My first driver was a black '69 Dodge that came from that track...Complete with the 2x10 wood and rubber front bumper.

  2. Rickybop
    Joined: May 23, 2008
    Posts: 6,747

    from Michigan

    59ab...Now that's a memory.

    Woody 29 Dodge...Nothin' like a bad big-block.

    MudLover...Wow, a kid that gets to go racing. Can't beat that. You were one lucky kid.

  3. I was around old cars a fair bit as a kid, but I can't remember a lot of my childhood very clearly.

    I do remember Mom always got tirespin at the corner of 12th Ave and Norcross in her Corvair pickup with the hopped up turbo motor...

    But my clearest memory is riding in a guy's van when I was about 15. He was a friend of a friend, and had this '66 Chev van with a 392 in the middle of it. Grey primer w/ ETX's on it (I still dig those wheels to this day).

    At my friend's request, Jon took me for a ride. He went through a couple gears at part throttle, about 3000 rpm; engine kinda' loafing.

    And the rear tires (N50's? L60's? pretty big for back then) didn't have a hope of keeping up...

    Jon was just putting along real casual; making steering corrections with one hand on the wheel, and the other on the shifter.

    Almost three decades later, that ride still sticks out in my mind. Jon's one of my closest friends, and has been instigator, enabler, and co-perpetrator in a number of automotive follies with me since then.

  4. Yep, it's a keeper. My first car was a 67 tempest/gto clone convertible. I sold it because I had to have a real gto. I bought a 72 blazer as a DD and my 67 gto a couple months later. After studying them I like the 67 better. ;) anyways the gto was taken all the way apart when I got it and took a long time to figure out how to put back together. about 6 years. Now that it's running and driving I'm going to blow it apart after the A is on the road.


    I still have the blazer too.
  5. My first automotive memory dates to November, 1959, when my great-uncle came to visit in his new '59 Chevrolet Impala.

    I was so impressed with the styling that I retrieved one of my grade-school notebooks (I was in fourth grade), went outside, and proceeded to sketch the car from front, side, and back so I wouldn't forget it.

    My favorite part of 1960s high-school football games was prowling the parking lot looking at freshly-purchased new-model cars.

    The two car dealers in one small West Texas town had no storage warehouses, so new cars arriving prior to September model introduction were wrapped in sheets and parked in a row next to the showrooms.

    I remember going to the Ford dealer's lot one windy day in 1963 to see if I could discern the shape of the new cars when the sheets were blown tight around the bodies.
  6. carcrazyjohn
    Joined: Apr 16, 2008
    Posts: 4,844

    from trevose pa

    My sister and I being tied in with ropes In the back of my dads 32 roadster.They were the seat belts .Boy times have changed ,Now you would need booster seats and real seatbelts
  7. Rickybop
    Joined: May 23, 2008
    Posts: 6,747

    from Michigan

    thecarfarmer: So Jon's been a very very bad infuence...LOL. Awesome.

    Bill: I'm game goin' on, cheering and the announcer in the background, and you checkin' out the new cars in the parking-lot. Wasn't that such a cool time? exciting stuff every cars, new music, etc.

    John: How ya doin' old buddy? gonna put rope safety-belts in your roadster? be traditional of course. LOL.

    Puttin' this thread back up so maybe we can hear some more. Thanks so much for sharing, guys. Every one of these stories is a trip back in time. I think it's important stuff, and I dig the heck out of it.

    I'll start again. This little incident doesn't sound like much, but it's the absolute earliest influential car/hot rod memory that I have, and illustrates just how early this stuff can start with us, providing the influence is there. And it certainly was there for me...

    I was 3 or 4 years old. Summer of '60/'61. We lived one street off of Main in Rochester, Michigan in a large two-story duplex that my folks rented from Clarence and Alice Nedro. They had four teenage kids...three boys and one girl...and all the boys were "greasers"...slicked hair, ciggs in the sleeve, black leather jackets, etc. I idolized them. During the day, when Clarence and my Dad were at work, my mom and Alice would frequently visit in Alice's kitchen, drinkin' coffee and playin' cards, and little ol' me would be toddling around nearby. One day, Alice's youngest boy, Joe, was outside with a couple of his friends, and they were messin' with a black late '40s Ford coupe sittin' in the driveway just outside Alice's kitchen. They were revvin' the shit outa that loud old car, and I went to the door and pressed my face against the glass to see. Joe and his buddies were bent over the front of the car with the hood up...WWWHHHHHAAAAABAAA!...WWWHHHHHAAAABAAA! I remember thinking it was so cool. Just then, my mom said, "Ricky!...Get away from that window!" And that ended my first exposure to a "hot rod". Just as with the incident with my dad's Plymouth, she threw a wet blanket on the moment, but it was too freakin' late!...I was hooked. I think she only increased my curiosity.

    A sad side-note: Any of you guys that were around back then, know that cars were getting faster, drinking and driving were rampant, and many died in alcohol-related auto-accidents...especially teenagers. Alice and Clarence lost their two oldest boys and only daughter due to tragic incidents such as this...all of 'em, except for Joe. I think maybe that's the kind of thing my mom was trying to keep me away from.
  8. HRod 50
    Joined: Feb 22, 2010
    Posts: 760

    HRod 50

    Fro me I think I was about 5 or 6. My Uncle Frank, had a 1968 Camaro, the car sounded awesome ,a nd one day we are going over McArthur Causeway from MIami Beach to MIami, and the drawbridge was about to go up, and the gates to stop cars were going down. My Uncle Frank punches it, we just barely make it under the gates coming down. NOW I wouldnt swear on Baby Jesus on this, but I think the bridge started to go up, and we got airborne and landed, on the other side. Now if you have draw bridges like we used to have in Miami Beach, you'd know when the bridges go up a huge gap opens up at the base where the bridge and pavement meet, but doesnt matter thats how I tell the story,, hahaha. Love You Uncle Frank...
  9. Rickybop
    Joined: May 23, 2008
    Posts: 6,747

    from Michigan

    HRod 50: Whoa, Nellie!...I mean, Go Nellie!!! LOL.
  10. Steves32
    Joined: Aug 28, 2007
    Posts: 1,280

    from So Cal

    Dad used to be away for long periods on business trips. We moved into a new house in 1959. The school was quite a distance away & uphill both ways. ;)
    The bus stop hadn't been established yet- as it was a new housing area.
    Mom had to drive me & my brother to school.
    Not in dad's cool car but mom's.
    How cool was mom's car in 59?
    Looked just like this 1958 jewel. Same color too. I've been in therapy ever since. ;)
    Funny now but not so funny when your friends gave you shit. We would lay down on the seats so no one would see us. Mom didn't get it. Dad thought it was too funny.
    These are the same funny parents that would stop for gas- let me & my brother out to use the bathroom & then drive off. We quickly learned to never get out of the car unless they did. Hardy har har.
    The pink boat.


    I was never so happy when the bus stop was finally a done deal. I remember dad being home once & offered to take us to school. He knew we hated that damn pink car so what did dad drive us in? Yep. The Rambler.
    Mom loved that damn car.
  11. Rickybop
    Joined: May 23, 2008
    Posts: 6,747

    from Michigan

    Hahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahaha!!! ^^^^^

    Steve...I said fondest memories! LOL!
  12. '46SuperDeluxe
    Joined: Apr 26, 2009
    Posts: 255

    from Clovis, CA

    All of the time that I was growing up in the 50's and 60's we had a string of unremarkable cars, mostly old MoPars, 40's Dodge sedan,'52 Chrysler, '52 Plymouth 4door, then a not so bad '56 Red & White hard top Chrysler,with the black & white interior. Unremarkable 318 poly though, NOT A HEMI! Then an unremarkable '59 Rambler Ambassador Wagon, for my Mom. In those days the car ads didn't have photographs of the cars they had Illustrations by the best artist of the day. Pontiac in '62 was putting on a campaign for their new Grand Prix, it was the last design by Harley Earl I think. I loved drawing cars, and I loved these ads, showing the GP with race cars in the background. So I was in total shock when Dad came home with a white one with light blue interior. He had traded the '56 for it. Of course by then it was used a bit, but still verrry cool! And uh, turdmagnet, we also, had to go out periodically to "blow the carbon out of" the 389.

    Attached Files:

  13. Francisco Plumbero
    Joined: May 6, 2010
    Posts: 2,536

    Francisco Plumbero
    from il.

    I used to drive my 1962 impala supersport to kindergarten, I was 5, so my damn mom was also in the car, wrecked it for me with the chicks. Oh well at least I made it through the whole year without pissing my pants at nap time, unlike most of my other class mates.
  14. Steves32
    Joined: Aug 28, 2007
    Posts: 1,280

    from So Cal

    Well it! ;)
  15. DavidL
    Joined: Oct 6, 2006
    Posts: 82


    I think I know the very minute I fell in love with old cars and horsepower. Around the mid-80's my dad picked up 1966 or 67 Plymouth Fury with a 383 for a summertime toy. One day he takes me for a ride and comes to a stop at the bottom of a hill that led to a bridge that went over a 4 lane interstate. He floored it and we did a burnout that felt like 50 feet long up the hill, which I'm sure was helped by the incline of the road. Tire smoke filled the car, the engine was roaring, I was holding on to the arm rest for dear life, and I had the biggest goofy grin that I've probably ever had. My dad caught a glimse of me and burst out laughing. On the cruise home he said we probably shouldn't tell mom about this. He sold the car when summer ended, but he had it long enough to turn me to the dark side.
  16. pretending I was asleep in my paren'r '52 Chevy when we got home and them going into the house. five minutes later, my old man opening the door and saying "lets go".
  17. scrubby2009
    Joined: Jan 9, 2011
    Posts: 197


    Where to start? My pops (JDavid51) messed me up for life. He's got pictures of my carseat in a '63 300K with that sweet 413 in it... Highlight memories? Fast rides with no seat belts in a 327/4-speed '52 Chevy coupe, throttle sticking in 3rd gear WFO in his '64 GTO ("look Kenny, all you have to do is turn off the key" as he laughs nervously), no hood or mufflers on the '57 BelAir as he slides into the school parking lot to pick me up one winter when I was 11, scaring the shit out of me when I was in my 20's... just put a 327 in this old '61 BelAir for him, sumbitch is chrome yellow with 20 year old glasspacks and he can't stop spinning the tires around town.. At that time, town cops kinda were keeping an eye on me and I was tryin' hard to be lo-pro... Much love and respect, Daddy-o, glad you're still around, showin' me how to avoid growing up at 64 years old!
  18. hemislave
    Joined: Nov 14, 2010
    Posts: 23


    For me my earliest memory is riding in my dads 67 GTX, my sister taking my best buddy an me to our first drive in movie in the back seat of a 68 HEMI Road Runner. I can remember bouncing in the back seat every time the car hit an expansion joint in the road. cant remember what the first movie was but the second one was Funny Car Summer!... About that same time period my Dad and Older cousin built a 62 plymouthw/ 413 max wedge and drag raced it for a couple of years, always had to ride shot gun when they would tune or change something and try it out on the county road that ran past our house.:D
  19. Now that is a great story, really glad for you to have witnessed history!
  20. gnichols
    Joined: Mar 6, 2008
    Posts: 10,846

    from Tampa, FL

    Stock car racing at the old Honolulu Stadium in the late 50's / early 60's (Cherry Neves was my first racing hero); figure 8 racing at the Speedrome east Indy in the early 60's; Wisconsin Modifieds mid-60's; F-1 races at Nurburgring in the late 60's; Monaco F-1 1969; LeMans 1970; ASA stock cars in the mid-70's; a few Long Beach Grand Prix; IMSA Camel GT at Mid-Ohio 1977 and a variety of US Nationals at Indy. Gary
    Last edited: Jan 16, 2011
  21. jaz
    Joined: Dec 16, 2010
    Posts: 218

    from London, UK

    We were dirt poor and didn't have flash cars, only old bangers - I remember my dad digging a hole in the back yard and sinking an old bath into it. If you wanted to do any work on a car you laid in the bath and pulled the car over you - it was better than crawling under a car on jacks.

    We would brush paint the old cars to smarten them up. I remember I bought a real dog of a car and then stole a locker from school so me and a mate could arc weld the metal into the rotten floors. We were shit at welding and more often than not the welding stick would get stuck and we would burn a bigger hole than we started with!

    Another memory was if I parked behind my old man on the drive, I would have to be first up in the morning to move the motor so my dad could leave for work. Some mornings I would be frantically trying to get it started and my old man would simply put his car in reverse and ram straight into me on purpose - what an early morning wake up that was - LOL.

    At one point we all had Fords, my girl was the only one who had a legal set of tyres, so we would all borrow them to get our cars through the MOT test.

    Happy Days and still skint now!
  22. gnichols
    Joined: Mar 6, 2008
    Posts: 10,846

    from Tampa, FL

    And I forgot... as my dad and I were both in the service, listening to the Indy 500 on AFN / AFRTS radio where ever we were in the world (long before they had the TV coverage, too.) Gary
  23. BlueOvalCertified
    Joined: Aug 6, 2009
    Posts: 99

    from Minnesota

    Spending time with my Dad at Iola every July!
  24. lakeroadster
    Joined: Nov 6, 2008
    Posts: 604

    from *

    The small local farming community school I went to in Ohio was a 3 story building with a paved walkway that was about 12 foot wide that lead from the street right up to the steps at the front door. Kids from grades k through 12 all went to this school.

    In 1972 I was in 6th grade, the parking lot at school was full of hopped up Camaro's, Nova's, Challengers, Cuda's, Chevelles, Firebird's, etc.

    Senior Day, we were on the second floor in math class. We heard an engine revving in front of the school. Our teacher, Mr. Perry, who was a cool younger dude, told us all to "check it out." Me and my buddies run to the windows and one of the Seniors had backed his '69 Nova right up to the steps, his buddies dumped bleach on the tires and he did a long smokey burnout for literally about an 1/8 of a mile. A few mniutes later the only cop in town went out of town in the direction of the Nova. Then all the other senior guys started doing burnouts in the street in front of the school.

    This went on for probably 10 minutes. Our teacher let us watch the entire thing.

    I was already "in to" cars, but from that day forward I was hooked. I remember the sight and smell of the carnage like it was yesterday.

    My first car.... a '70 Nova.
    Last edited: Jan 18, 2011
  25. My favorite car-related memory is from August 30, 1966, the day I brought my '38 Ford pickup home. I was 14, just starting 9th grade. I had bought the truck for $15, after school I walked down to Seabron Brown's garage to get him to haul it home for me. Seabron had two wreckers at the time, an International one ton that he used for most things, and his heavy wrecker, a big Ford cabover with tandem rear axles. T he smaller International would have been better suited to the job, but Seabron kindly accomodated a 14 year old kid's request to have his newly-purchased old Ford brought home by a Ford wrecker.
  26. 43gman
    Joined: Jan 19, 2009
    Posts: 187

    from NC

    In 1958, every morning before school I’d get a ride from my mom and go to the ice cream shop where I worked so I could sweep and mop the floors and make preparations for that day’s business. Because I had to be at school by eight o’clock, I had to be dropped off by six fifteen every morning.

    I was usually finished work by seven forty five. The school was only a mile or so up the road, but no self respecting sophomore was going to walk to school, if he knew a kid with a car.

    Fran Harding was in my class, but already had a driver’s license. I guess he’d “stayed back” at some point but no one asked about that sort of thing back then. More the sort of thing one would ask is “could you give me a ride to school in the mornings?”

    On some mornings, Fran’s mother would pick me up, and Fran and I would sheepishly ride to school in her Jaguar; which we thought was very uncool. It was, however, definitely better than walking, or catching the school bus.

    But most mornings Fran would show up in his ’29 Model A roadster. Red oxide primer, sixteen inch ‘40 Ford wheels and hubcaps, dropped front axle, juice brakes; it looked so cool. The old banger motor had a hot cam and header, and early Ford V-8 carburetor. Fran’s Model A looked just like the California hot rods in the little car magazines I used to sneak into my school books and read during my boring afternoon classes.

    Every morning I’d watch as Fran would pull into the driveway. “Ahooga!”

    “C’mon! We’re gonna be late!” Wayne would holler. Wayne was Fran’s authoritative upper classman buddy who always rode shot gun. Running out of the store, I would scramble into the rumble seat.

    The wind in a rumble seat when the outside temperature is anything below eighty degrees and sunny is brutal. In the colder months, I’d try to push further down into the seat area, shivering; my teeth chattering worse than the old Ford’s worn clutch. Most often though, excitement took over, and the coldness would fade. The Model A would lurch forward, shake and rattle out onto the road to the school. Crunch, second gear. Crunch, third gear. Now we’d be really cruising, (probably thirty five or forty miles per hour!) I was a poor kid, and the lack of the right cold weather garb was painfully obvious. No hat, no gloves, thin cloth coat over cotton shirt and khaki pants—but riding in a real hot rod!

    The tired four cylinder with the Stromberg downdraft carburetor sucked in the winter air and pushed the roadster toward the High School parking lot. Once arrived and circling for a parking spot, we pretended not to see the stares of envy from the other boys, and the girls shaking their heads. Of course, all teen age boys think that the girls are looking at them and thinking they’re cool. It took years for me to learn that most of the girls thought we were pretty weird, and most were just not interested in our cars.

    In the late fifties, Model A Fords were already fading from the highways, and the high school parking lots. We all wanted “modern cars,” and when I got my license in 1959, my first car was a 1954 Ford convertible.

    By the summer of ’58, Fran had junked the roadster, (literally!) and found a 1932 five window coupe to work on and drive. This car, too, only lasted a year or so, and by the time we graduated, Fran had a nice 1955 Pontiac sedan.

    These memories have lasted many years, and will live in me forever.
  27. 1953Plymouth
    Joined: Aug 11, 2009
    Posts: 42

    from Peoria, AZ

    Can remember when I was maybe 5 or 6. Would go to a neighbors field where their oldest son had his own little collection of old cars, trucks and
    tractors to supply any needs that araise on thier farm. This was better than any playground! Most of this "vintage" stuff wound up being donated at a local scrap drive for the Korean War effort. This started my love affair with things automotive!

    One of my worst car experiences was also about this same time. My older brother's friend had this neat rumble seat Model A coupe. They coaxed me into the rumble seat on the pretense we were going for a ride, but slammed the lid shut once I was seated. Damned guys drove down a dusty gravel road for what seemed like an eternity while I was tearfully screaming and beating on the trunk lid. Still get that sinking feeling in my gut also 60 years later whenever I see a Model A with an open rumble seat!!!
  28. 62hotcat
    Joined: Jan 7, 2007
    Posts: 201


    I remember driving in my grandfathers 62 catalina that my uncle bought new. i must have been 3or4 couldnt see over dash. but i remember the feeling everytime he shifted the floor shifter. dont know if it was 3or 4sp.another is my neighbor had a 69 mustang mach 1 that he bought new 351 4sp. he gave me a ride to school i must have been 6 or7 but i rememberthat feeling of getting pushed back in the seat every shift.he never washed that car it was filthy. he said so no one would steal it. well it got stolen and recovered next day. he still has that car and is having it restored.pretty cool.
  29. CruiserUser
    Joined: Jan 12, 2011
    Posts: 32


    My dad always had big blocks so my childhood was full of riding with him while he'd give them hell. My favorites were his blown big block '70 Chevelle (which he still has) that once or twice a week he'd find an empty road and let it wind up and his big block '69 FJ40 (which is how I came to like those japanese jeeps). I've always associated building a car with stupid amounts of power because of the stuff he builds.
  30. Mark Hinds
    Joined: Feb 20, 2009
    Posts: 589

    Mark Hinds
    from pomona ca

    Ahhhhh the first time I smelled NITRO. Something you never forget. A friend of my dad owned the old San Gabriel here is So Cal. Thanks DAD......

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