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Hot Rods the rise & demise of car clubs over the years

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by HOTRODPRIMER, Jan 13, 2019 at 1:46 PM.

  1. I don't have a clue as to when or where the first car club was started but I imagine about the same time the automobile became affordable to the masses, a few young men sitting around and talking about their cars and before long the men had loosely formed a club.

    I was recently looking at Dennis O'Briens site and see where he offers over 12,000 car club plaques and there is no telling how many clubs started and went defunct and never had a plaque.

    Last night I ran across our 1990 club directory and we had grown to 44 members at that time , Tri-City Rod & Custom was est. in 1972 and had small hand full of members at that first meeting.

    Time takes it toll on any organization, whether members loose interest or they pass away,

    Of the 44 members in that 1990 directory there are only 10 of us active, we have gained a few members since that time but to my knowledge 15 members have passed away, the rest must have lost interest.

    47 years later we still have one original member that was at the first meeting, I have seen a lot of clubs come and go and I know they are not for everybody, I would like to think car clubs will be around for future generations.

    Giving it some additional thought, the Hamb could loosely be call a car club, and as long as there are individuals how eat, sleep & breath traditional hot rods & customs the future is bright. HRP
     
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  2. squirrel
    Joined: Sep 23, 2004
    Posts: 40,866

    squirrel
    Member

    Yeah, things have changed. I was about the youngest member when I joined 30 years ago, I'm still about the youngest member.

    Another funeral this afternoon....a friend who was in the club for 20+ years.

    Oh well.
     
    HOTRODPRIMER likes this.
  3. oliver westlund
    Joined: Dec 19, 2018
    Posts: 114

    oliver westlund
    Member

    I am just starting my car club, only have 3 members. It seems silly not to have a club? A group of guys helping each other out for parts, labor and info, putting on car shows and music festivals, doing some charity work for the community? No brainer to me. I worked with the local booster club 5/6 years ago and helped put on their first car show, was the best fundraiser the high schoom had ever had by 3x! My younger brother graduated and I left the committee, within 2 years they had stopped doing it... Got to keep the culture/hobby alive! Nobody is gonna do it for us! Make a personal mission to get at least one young person interested!
     
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  4. rusty rocket
    Joined: Oct 30, 2011
    Posts: 3,009

    rusty rocket
    Member

    Young guys don't want to mess with old cars so your not going to get very many new members. I know the clubs around me want new guys so a few have joined and tried to freshen up a few things with terrible results. The old guys really don't want change. It's a lose lose situation.
     
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  5. 49ratfink
    Joined: Feb 8, 2004
    Posts: 16,910

    49ratfink
    Member
    from California

    young guys are not interested in old cars and the vintage tin is all drying up. this has been going on since the 70's when I read about it in Rod Action magazine. of course the young guys in the 70's are now old guys... so I don't know who is building all these Hot Rods... must be the medium guys.

    in high school 5 of us made jackets and did nothing else. best club I have ever been in.
     
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  6. V8 Bob
    Joined: Feb 6, 2007
    Posts: 2,302

    V8 Bob
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    The local club I've belonged to since '74, St. Joe Valley Street Rods, was started in '71 and is still going very strong. Membership has grown over the years but is now capped at 32, with age ranging from the 40s to over 80. (I'm 72) The club is structured, with officers, bylaws, a constitution, meetings every two weeks rotated at members homes or shops (who also provide food/beverage), and dues.
    We have several events during the year, including raising money for our local Hospice.
    Many members have come and gone, so it's not for everyone, but we're doing something right to still have it fun, enjoyable and with many close friendships for almost 50 years!
     
  7. slowmotion
    Joined: Nov 21, 2011
    Posts: 2,907

    slowmotion
    Member

    I was at an inaugural meeting of a new forming club, mid 70's. Of course the street-rod craze was in full bloom 'bout this time. Basically a chosen few who wanted everybody else to work on their cars...& we can be buddy's, OK? Buncha wieners, pass...
     
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  8. Mr48chev
    Joined: Dec 28, 2007
    Posts: 23,817

    Mr48chev
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    Well the "young guy thing may not hold water as there are several young guy clubs around here, they just don't have the older cars.
    As far as "old car" goes in 1973 when I went to my first street rod nationals in Tulsa in my 48 that was 25 years old a 32 Ford was 41 years old. A 41 year old car is a 78 model now and a 25 year old truck is a 1994. To those young kids a 70 is an old car and a 60 is a real old car.
    The kid rolling into an afternoon car show in his 78 Camaro is driving a car that is the same age that 32 Fords were when they rolled into the 73 street rod nationals.
    Agreed that a good club has to have a group that no matter what the age is have the same basic concept of what cars fit the image of the club and have the same line of thinking on club activities. I've seen a few clubs go to hell in a handbasket because members wanted changes in what vehicles were allowed in as member vehicles or when the idea of what activities would do got out of hand.
    A somewhat loose knit group here locally that I have some friends in put on a small show a year but the rest of the year either travel as a group to area events or you see them on a Burger run on a night in the middle of the week where they pick a place to go eat and away who ever wants to goes up or down the road.
     
  9. Tim
    Joined: Mar 2, 2001
    Posts: 8,531

    Tim
    Member
    from Raytown Mo

    So granted at 36 I might not be 100% young gun any more but compared to most I am.

    But this is my two cents either way.

    There are shit tons of guys my age and younger building old stuff even though it’s not cheap or super main stream. Check out Instagram or rod events where your actually doing something and you’ll find young hot Rodders.

    I think one point of a club originally was to share information and tools and as such I think social media- like the hamb- has soaked up some of that.

    The reason your not seeing young guys join older existing clubs is because to most it looks like a parking lot loitering association.

    The clubs in the kc area that have older guys that still attract newer members are the ones that have groups going to rod runs far away, actively building stuff, showing up with a. Car ins. Different stage each meet up.

    The groups that hit the hot rod hill climb, the drags, etc etc. those guys are Atracting younger members.

    As far as new clubs being “born” I think that there are plenty of new clubs they just aren’t registering or having plates made at a foundry. I know a group of 3-5 of us finally decided our group would have a “club name” but if there’s plaques involved they’d probably be made by us and the idea of registering on some list of clubs seems to serious for what we are doing.

    I know @Inked Monkey run around with a similar ages group of 4 or 5 that run under a name as well. Honestly the scene here is pretty big and every one is pretty cool/ social so the need for a formal club to take advantage of it isn’t really necessary.

    I see clubs now more like social groups, just guys that kinda run together most often.


    Sorry kind of a ramble. But have faith there are plenty of guys under 40 and under 30 building
    Cool shit out there. And most of them
    Are out driving
     
    Last edited: Jan 13, 2019 at 8:25 PM
  10. There is a very active younger club here called "Hard Knox HRC and they are build some extremely nice cars and a good group of guys, with their enthusiasm the car club scene in this area is safe. HRP
     
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  11. While cars are fun, my experience with clubs has always gone down the same path as a Home Owners Association- do it our way, or face our ridicule. Sorry Poor Boy, the love of your life is not as nice as our 100k 32 Ford. Park your long bed in the back row, or better yet, down the street. hence the rise of the Rat Rods. Time takes its toll, as I have been a member, and have moved on.
     
  12. 49ratfink
    Joined: Feb 8, 2004
    Posts: 16,910

    49ratfink
    Member
    from California

    you can't really make that comparison, since we like these cars because they are way cool looking, not simply because they are old. if age were the only factor there would be no repop steel and fiberglass cars running around. plus in the 70's these old cars were simple and primitive compared to new cars. my daily is 26 years old and other than less computers stuff and no airbags it does everything a new truck can do.
     
  13. wuga
    Joined: Sep 21, 2008
    Posts: 281

    wuga
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    Our club, The Galt Strokers, was founded in 1954 and I joined in 1961. We had a building, shared tools and knowledge and had a place to stay away from the ever vigilant eyes of the local constabulary. By 1970 a new breed was joining and things started to go down hill. The club still exists and I am still a member, but it is mostly a social get together. The few serious ones like myself have our own shop. As I moved around the country, I joined a couple of other clubs but their rule book was either too thick or the club was dominated by one tyrant. But, clubs are still forming. A group of young people just up the road from me use one of the barns to work on their drifters etc. Not my kind of place, but there is some amazing work going on in there.
    As Mr48chev noted and I have mentioned this many times, when I bought my first Model A, it was only 32 years old. That would be a 1987 something today. It's hard to believe my 62 Cutlass is 57 years old and the Bantam and the Model A approaching their 90th birthday. My, how time flies when you are having a good time.
    I wouldn't give up the time I spent at the car club, learned quite a bit, but now I prefer the solitude of my shop. Gives me time to think about all the things I have to do before my time is up.

    Warren
     
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  14. flatford39
    Joined: Dec 3, 2006
    Posts: 2,055

    flatford39
    Member

    HRP...another side of the coin is that I come here for the knowledge (which is vast) without the commitment to a club. No dues, no meetings etc.

    I can only speak for myself and I do know that I am a little anti-social and like doing my projects alone without outside help. With that said the HAMB is a Godsend to guys like me who don't want to be in a social circle as the HAMB answers a ton or more of my questions.

    Don't get me wrong as I believe there are more guys who want or need the assistance of a Club...I am just not one of them.
     
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  15. I helped start a club in my previous hometown. Then moved and joined another here that eventually just disappeared.
    So for the last 30 years or so I have been in this club with just one member.
    I am also somewhat anti-social so it has worked out..still can't get the member to do anything right though...always wants to do things his way...I may not vote for him as president next time...
     
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  16. butch27
    Joined: Dec 10, 2004
    Posts: 2,741

    butch27
    Member

    My club "Memories in Motion" has been around for about 35 years and there are older clubs he in Michigan
    BUT almost all of us are like OLD..!
     
  17. Moriarity
    Joined: Apr 11, 2001
    Posts: 13,177

    Moriarity
    SUPER MODERATOR
    Staff Member

    I used to belong to a club called the imperials. No meetings and only 2 rules.
    1. If you were at a swap meet and had 2 hotdogs and ran into another member, you had to give it to him.
    2. If a member needed help on his car, you helped him
     
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  18. I, like many of us on here, are members of a large national hot rod club. Then they opened it up to newer cars, imports and mini-trucks. I don't remember ever getting a ballot to vote on the matter. That's when I found out we are NOT a club, but a corporation. :(
     
  19. oliver westlund
    Joined: Dec 19, 2018
    Posts: 114

    oliver westlund
    Member

    i think youd be surprised how many high school kids would be on board with having a hot rod or a sweet muscle car, most of em just think theyre out of reach, they dont know how to do the work, dont have someone to show em how and just like a LOT of you guys they have parents at home telling them theyre just money pits, they just need a role model!

    Sent from my SM-G960U using The H.A.M.B. mobile app
     
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  20. oliver westlund
    Joined: Dec 19, 2018
    Posts: 114

    oliver westlund
    Member

    im building a forge and teaching myself to make sand molds, im 30 which feels old haha but i guess im young....i need to find someone with a 3d printer or a cnc who can make me templates for club plaques etc

    Sent from my SM-G960U using The H.A.M.B. mobile app
     
  21. BamaMav
    Joined: Jun 19, 2011
    Posts: 2,474

    BamaMav
    Member
    from Berry, AL

    Lone wolf, no club. I explained my reasons in the last thread like this that came up. Or was it the one before that ? Search my old posts to find it....
     
  22. The37Kid
    Joined: Apr 30, 2004
    Posts: 24,512

    The37Kid
    Member

    Car Club, been there done that, even got up to the National level, guys with the Super Ego can be my guest running things, I'm happy back here doing my thing, you go right ahead and run it your way. The HAMB if you want to call it a Club is the best one I've ever been in, closing in on 15 years now. We actually care about one another, wish one another Happy Birthday, show compassion when some one passes, share info freely, sell parts & cars, and if we are real lucky finally meet the guys you have know online for years. :)

    Bob
     
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  23. oliver westlund
    Joined: Dec 19, 2018
    Posts: 114

    oliver westlund
    Member

    i dont know how freely, i cant get anyone to respond to my build thread for the life of me
     
  24. deathrowdave
    Joined: May 27, 2014
    Posts: 1,160

    deathrowdave
    ALLIANCE MEMBER
    from NKy

    I was a member for years of one of the oldest clubs in Ohio . I just got tired of the BS . It stopped being fun with cars, someone always not doing what one member thought he should not be doing . I left like my head was on fire and my azz was catchin ! I can go and do everything members do , and not need to drink for 3 days after a meeting . Don’t get me wrong , the club has survived for years , maybe it was me .
     
  25. The37Kid
    Joined: Apr 30, 2004
    Posts: 24,512

    The37Kid
    Member

    Add the link to your signature, that way they see it every time you post. Bob
     
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  26. oliver westlund
    Joined: Dec 19, 2018
    Posts: 114

    oliver westlund
    Member

  27. The37Kid
    Joined: Apr 30, 2004
    Posts: 24,512

    The37Kid
    Member

    Yes it did! Radio stuff looks a lot scarier than car wiring. Bob
     
  28. buikwag
    Joined: Apr 21, 2005
    Posts: 472

    buikwag
    Member
    1. Buick Nailheads

    I have been a member of the Over the Hill Gang Car club since it began 45 years ago. We started small but have since grown to over 300 on the roster and 32 Chapters worldwide. So they can survive and prosper. We have very few rules and no dues. Money kills a lot of organizations.


    Sent from my iPhone using H.A.M.B.
     
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  29. oliver westlund
    Joined: Dec 19, 2018
    Posts: 114

    oliver westlund
    Member

    fortunately theres a fellow who did a 9 video restoration of that model of zenith on youtube. i just followed the steps
     
  30. gimpyshotrods
    Joined: May 20, 2009
    Posts: 15,431

    gimpyshotrods
    Member

    Most of the people that I know either don't own cars, at-all, or they own boutique supercars.

    My Porsche days were over a couple of decades ago. I was in a club then.
     
    oliver westlund likes this.

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