Have you ever attended a family function, a car show, or a race intending to capture all those special situations that arise through the course of the event only to realize when you got home that you missed many of the best opportunities? That same scenario can easily present itself during a restoration.
It’s understandable. You get so involved with what you’re trying to finish that you forget to take photos of the most consequential and satisfying accomplishments. Since I’ve done the same thing on projects large and small more times than I care to recall, this article is offered simply as a quick reminder for you to immortalize in pixels certain magic moments during your car’s restoration before they sneak by unnoticed.
These photos can make the album you show to family and friends or display with your finished car at shows more dynamic and cohesive, and they can do the same for the project thread you may decide to post online.Keep in mind, however, this article isn’t about listing every item you should shoot to document your restoration, such as the overall teardown and the sub-assemblies to show how they came apart, so you have a guide for putting them back together.
It’s also not covering all the photos you should also take of special markings to replicate, or the cleaning, stripping, repairing, repainting, and reinstallation of most of your project’s powertrain, chassis, body, and interior parts. Instead, these are the big moments not to be missed. The ones where you want to take a moment to really capture what’s going on
We can’t get enough of car movies. They’re like pizza, even when they’re pretty bad, they’re pretty good. From the campy flicks of the 1950s, like Hot Rods to Hell, to Hollywood’s latest, like Ford v Ferrari, we watch them all and we watch them over and over and over. And like you, we have our favorites.
Recently, we chose our favorite street racing films. This time we’re going to dive into the worst automotive gaffs in movie history, the mistakes made by the filmmakers that only us car geeks pick up and complain about.
Directors and stunt coordinators should give us a little more respect. They don’t think we notice when they goof up, but we always do
Dirty Mary, Crazy Larry (1974)
One of the great road films of the early 1970s, Dirty Mary, Crazy Larry stars Peter Fonda and a salaciously cool 1969 440-powered Dodge Charger on slot mags with a “black racing stripe”. It was also painted Citron Yella (code GY3), a High Impact Dodge color from 1971 because Director John Hough wanted to make sure it jumped off the screen. But look closely: R/T badges come and go, and in some of the driving shots, the Mopar is a 1968 without the divider in the center of its grille.
Vanishing Point (1971)
Another legendary Mopar road film from that era is Vanishing Point, with doped-up ex-cop Kowalski (Barry Newman) racing through the west in a white 440-powered four-speed Dodge Challenger. Spoiler alert, the car is destroyed at the end when it loses a fight with a couple of bulldozers. During filming, Dodge loaned the production four cars, but look closely, it isn’t the E-body that hit those iron buckets, it was the shell of a 1967 Camaro filled with pyrotechnics.
In our recent piece on the Model A Ford Museum, we interviewed past president and current Model A Ford Foundation, Inc. (MAFFI) special advisor, Stan Johnson, and current MAFFI president John Begg, about the history behind the founding and construction of the facility, an 11,000 square-foot institution that is part of the sprawling campus of the Gilmore Car Museum in Hickory Corners, Michigan
.Beyond the design and construction of the edifice, the façade of which replicates a medium-sized Ford agency circa 1929, Stan and John shared with us the contents of the building for the feature story, which includes a small showroom, a service area populated by a plethora of NOS parts, tools, and materials a Model A mechanic would have had at his disposal, and a series of static and mobile interactive displays already in place and under construction prior to the chilling effects of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Together with the rest of the MAFFI board of directors, trustees, and support from members of both the Model A Ford Club of America (MAFCA) and the Model A Restorers Club (MARC), the museum’s constant rotating displays of both loaned and donated items celebrate the compelling four-year history of “Henry’s Lady,” while looking to the future of the old car culture as a whole.
Helping accomplish both goals is the museum’s annual Model A Day event, which commemorates the facility’s opening on the third Saturday of each September. This year marks the ninth such gathering (tentatively scheduled for September 19) and, like past events, Model A Day will be centered on the theme-based gathering of the famed Ford.
Model “A” Ford Foundation. Dear Model A Supporters, This year we had planned to celebrate our tenth annual Model A Day reunion at The Gilmore. However, due to the continuing and unabated impact of the Covid-19 virus, the MAFFI Trustees have concluded that we must cancel the September 18th-19th, 2020 event.
t’s a common misconception that Hemmings Motor News for its first half-century or so only ran old-car classified ads and nothing else. That’s certainly how Ernest Hemmings started the company in 1954. However, not long afterward, he started to feature readers’ cars and, as it turns out, the first car he featured remains in the same family 60-plus years later.
With our headquarters in Bennington, Vermont, still closed, we can’t dig through our archives to confirm that Harlan C. Cratty’s 1916 Ford Model T coupelet appeared as the first featured car in the October 1958 issue of Hemmings Motor News, but we kinda don’t need to with the photos and information that Cratty’s grandson, Phil Berg, recently sent our way.
Those materials include a letter that Ernest Hemmings (then, as always, in Quincy, Illinois) wrote to Cratty (in Omaha, Nebraska) on September 30, 1958, in which Hemmings conducted some business with Cratty—the sale of a pair of camshafts for $2—and then thanked Cratty for the photos of his T. “It is our aim to have a feature car each month and as your fine car is very usual (sic) thought it would be good to start out with,” Hemmings wrote. He probably meant to write unusual.
Long before anybody’s wildest imaginations could have conceived of Chrysler (not to mention Dodge and Jeep) becoming part of a multi-national carmaking company that included some storied Gallic brands, perhaps one of the most important Chrysler concept vehicles of the Nineties intentionally evoked the design and feel of one of the most important Citroens of all time.
At first glance, the CCV, introduced at Frankfurt in December 1997, looks like little more than another pre-millennium exercise in retro looks, albeit one that aped a popular car that Chrysler had nothing to do with. By all accounts, Bryan Nesbitt intentionally designed the CCV as an homage to the “Tin Snail” and the name (two Cs and a V), though deployed as an acronym (Composite Concept Vehicle), could hardly be mistaken as anything other than an evocation of the Citroen 2CV.
THE ENCHANTING TRIM OF THIS 1953 KAISER DRAGON RECALLS THE MYSTERIOUS ISLANDS OF THE PACIFIC
Exposure to the exotic vistas of the Pacific stuck with a great number of World War Two veterans when they returned home in the mid-1940s. That affinity led to an explosion of interest in Polynesian culture and aesthetics that would lead to the rise of Tiki bars, Exotica music and the 1949 Broadway hit, South Pacific.
The Bambu-vinyl-and-Laguna-cloth interior is the star player in the Dragon, and it is well supported by lavish chrome trim and accessory lighting inside. That padded dash complements a pop-out windshield to add an extra bit of safety to all 1951-’55 Kaisers.
The auto industry would be a much different place today had a young engineer at Ford simply taken on his first assignment in 1946, designing automatic transmissions.Instead, Lido Anthony “Lee” Iacocca, then a 22-year-old who had just completed Ford’s 18-month training course in just half that time and who already had his master’s degree in mechanical engineering from Princeton, told his superiors he wanted to work in sales rather than engineering. When nobody at Ford headquarters would give him a job in sales, he quit