The Jalopy Journal
Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by oliver westlund, Jan 5, 2022.
I'll take 2 scoops of the neo-traditional please, with sprinkles.
Having grown up in the 1950’s in Southern California and spending 40+ years in the high performance industry, I’m here to tell you that there is no such thing as a TRADITIONAL HOT ROD! Hot rodding is and always has been an expression of individual skills and tastes. As my signature says, “traditional hot rodding is thinking outside the box, not a paint by numbers project”
I really like this site and will continue taking advantage of it. There are alot of knowledgeable and helpful people on this site no doubt. However there are some that go way to far on judging whats traditional up to 1965. If you really look a 63-65 the lines become blurred about whats traditional. My personel opinion when it comes to safety vs traditional you always should favor safety first and the rest of it is basically someones opinion.
Here's my shitstorm starter...
In my mind, 'traditional' is what would have been built by the backyard hotrodder of the era. They took the foundation of what they had (Model A, '37 Chev, whatever) and modified it using (mostly) upgrades that made it faster, unique, different, more fun. That usually entailed the most modern upgrades they could afford. The limit on this site is for vehicles prior to '66. I have noticed that the rule doesn't necessarily apply to equipment that was available prior to '66, and that's good, because quite frankly, some of the stuff available in that time period was junk/unsafe. (as a side note, I think LEDs should be encouraged (in vintage housings) as a safety issue. Air bags ARE NOT traditional, adn should be discouraged).
Where some folks go off the rail is ASSUMING what they see in a 1958 Rod and Custom is what 'traditional' is all about. WRONG! The cars that got 'print' were the cream of the crop, usually high dollar (for the time), NOT backyard builds. REAL traditional was what the high school or college kid next door built with his own hands and ingenuity. Unfortunately, unless you lived in the era or know someone that did, your only resource for info is the printed word, and that gives a distorted picture. Talk to an old fart who has 'been there, did that, don't need no damned shirt!'
Back to regular programming...
Ill say that out of the older fellows i know, my dad being a prime example (born in 1940 drag racing at the local strip in the 50s) this tends to be their answer as well. If you asked my dad he would tell you what he thought was cool back then and what was dorky but he couldnt care less beyond that and he built his stuff the way he liked em
Amen! I had someone tell me the other day just having a part isnt a good enough reason to use it...i kind of smiled to myself and thought "but isnt that what this started as and is about?"
I Ain't Much For Words And Such..
To me ? Absolutely nothing . I just like cars & engines , mechanical stuff .
Traditional hot rodding, to me, is building or making performance or appearance improvements.
On this site traditional is adherence to a 1964 or earlier definition for vehicles and parts. Although I understand the premise of restoring or creating a “traditional “ hot rod, the difference is: traditionally hot rodding is an activity that, by it’s nature, strives for improvements not just adherence to history whether real or imagined.
I grew up in the 50's & seen a lot of Custom's & Hot rod's
back in the Day, so I know what they look like & it made me
Ride my Bike alot & my car a little
Just my 3.5 cents
Live Learn & Die a Fool
Building my car the way I want to build it. I will use some modern parts . I am not a restorer or die hard traditionalist.
I couldn't even see who you were responding too, then I remembered the ignore button. It's your friend. As many good guys as there are on here, there's some keyboard warriors. Few, but they're out there... Ignoring them makes the experience here oh so much more enjoyable...
Good tip! Thanks!
Horseshit has a better fragrance than bullshit. In MY opinion.
I go along with beaner. Will not always fit here [ H.A.M.B. ], though. Another mans moneymaking sandbox .
A trad Hot Rod to me is driven,not trailered and doesn,t have fake race car numbers or a fake speed shop name on it.
My preference is flathead powered early Fords but what floats your boat might vary.
1920 thru 1954, Cars, trucks, and bikes. 1955 was the beginning of "Store Bought Hot Rods" eg: 1955 Chevys.
What did it for me was seeing the Khougaz Roadster in person for the first time.
Everything looked familiar and from a distance mostly like any '32 (albeit very low) and I'm one of those people that goes through car shows quickly - yep...next...yep...ok...another one...cool flathead...ok nice old vette motor...nope sorry those are just valve covers...etc... But when I saw the Khougaz I told my friends to go on ahead.
About twenty minutes passed before I realized I was laying on the ground just staring at it all by myself - and I had it all to myself. Every detail was handcrafted for speed and for looks in equal measure. I think I kind of tripped into another dimension considering all the decisions that had gone into it - or at least the ones that I could comprehend. Can't explain it but after years of looking at cars, it was just clearer after that. I wasn't even drinking (yet) that day. Mercifully it was parked in the shade.
That nice young woman sitting on the Purple People Eater is from here in San Diego. It's a great David Perry photo, but I can confidently confirm that it did not do her justice in person.
Lol, yet... My man.
That is a cleeaaan roadster alright!
Tradition is different for each of us. Build what you want to own. Careful about getting sucked into the thought that you have to follow someone else's guidelines, because they aren't paying the bill.
My ideas of "traditional" may not be the same as those who own and/or moderate this forum, but this is their place, so we go by their rules around here. I don't limit my personal life of hot rodding to the rules of the HAMB, but I do try to respect the rules in my posts here.
While I really like purely traditional cars, and I do hope to own one someday, I also like the traditional aspect of hot rod building that says "screw the rules, I'm building this for me, not for anyone else." Guys in the traditional era built what they did because it's what they had to work with. And while a lot of guys followed certain accepted formulas in building their cars, others didn't, they pushed the limits, and now their ideas are considered traditional. Every unique car was at one time pushing the boundaries of what was common at the time, or pushed clear through all boundaries and created new ones, but now they are also considered to be traditional. So there is an element of traditional hot rodding this is missing around here, and that is the unique hot rod. There are a ton of cookie cutter traditional hot rods around here, and that's cool; but do something out of the usual and you get either get ignored, or you get deleted.
I think a lot of builds get confused. If you want to respect an old way of doing things you have to exercise a little discipline. That discipline includes looking in old print, spending many cups of coffee on image searches, and going to shows where you can see it live. What am on about? Well you don't build a flathead steel wheel Deuce and the stick a fuckin "me too" steering wheel on it that looks like a DUB. You don't use cruise night flex chrome cooling tubes or plumb it all in braided and AN. If you want that well then hey, bless ya, but don't get your roids all swollen if someone says it isn't "correct" because if you use the discipline you don't make that mistake. You don't have a confused car. Is it easy to do? Depends on the goal. I think a well done pissed off late 60s early 70s rod is off the hook kool. So is a late 50s OHV engine rod, but those engines won't have fabricated valve covers or Moroso air cleaners. Is this making sense yet? "But Jocko what about the guy who uses just what's laying around?" Well that's an undisciplined build. You don't get a pass, you don't get to say "...and I felt like I was back in the day when I built it so..." because it doesn't respect a time.
You build a GNRS quality 100% traditional rod. Not an ounce of billet and if the wheels are 18s they're likely wires not DUBS. Are we there yet? Is Jake's yellow 34 allowed here? You bet your Y-block it is. When was it built? Again, are we there yet? When does the fun leak out like an old radiator? When you try to fill in too many blanks from too many examples and look for mass approval. Follow your gut, pick a look, stick with it. That task requires the discipline (again dude?) I spoke of. Remain true to your goal and put in the effort to hit the era, hit the mark, and that's truly traditional hot rodding. Does it mean if you use modern tools to make it easier it's wrong? No, because you don't have to use a torch in a dirt floor garage with a single light bulb because you found one picture of someone doing it in the past. You can make pretty MIG or TIG welds to french your headlights and metal finish because it's easier and better and lasts longer than wads of braze and 10lbs of lead. Doesn't make it wrong especially when the look is right. But if you jam LED headlights in there? Are we there yet?
What does it mean? Traditional hot rodding? Respect, and the discipline to stay the course to produce a result. Rod, custom (kustom?), or race, same, same, same. As was said in earlier replies you know it when you see it, and if you look long enough you can spot it from 100' away.
And @theHIGHLANDER sums it up nicely, as usual!
I think traditional hot rodding died when Detroit started selling new, ready made hot rods. From then on it has just been all of us old farts living in nostalgia land.
I just come here to watch you guys fight.
I had a few dropped off. I knew what I did was questionable and I accept it. As long I’m not completely dropped. I’m good…
The bottom 2 aren’t my style…. I’ll always look
X2…..but it’s getting more scripted than a WWF match.
Comments like this are why i made this post, great explaination! I dig it
Maybe, maybe not... I like hearing others opinions, I dont agree with em all but the wisest people I have ever known spent a TON of time prying thoughts and opinions out of others
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