So I don't exactly qualify as a "young rodder" at the ripe old age of 35, but a cumulative score of my 6 kids and myself equals roughly 11.5 years. (Brooklyn 12, Kelsey 10, Sydnee 9, Austin 7, Ryleigh 5, and Corbin 3.) It's not cheating, we're just working a loophole in your policy!
We are truly a hot rodding family. When we began discussing going on a 'cruise' the kids were wondering which car we'd take, how many hot rods would be there, and if we were staying at the host hotel. It didn't occur to me that every cruise we'd been on previously did not involve a large ship, so they couldn't comprehend a cruise without hot rods!
We've been to Americruise twice, lots of Good-Guys shows, LA Roadsters Father's Day Show, and every local show that happens. My kids are well behaved (usually) and know they don't touch or get too close to ANY car. Running around isn't acceptable at car shows, nor is kicking gravel, spinning around, or all of the other fun things kids get to do.
Everyone local knows us and have no reason to worry. Unfortunately, too many children aren't taught to respect other people's property and will stand on a freshly painted running board or even lean on a car with sticky hands. It's fun to watch people at national shows watch my kids look at their car. It's like they're just about ready to say "DON'T TOUCH THAT" but never get the opportunity to because they won't get that close. They'll even crawl around the car to see the suspension, but never get too close.
As a family we've accumulated a few projects over the years. The most active project we currently have is a 1931 Model A Tudor Sedan. It's chopped 3 1/2", has a Don's Hot Rods chassis, 327/350, and is being done in a early 60's theme. We've been working on this car for over 6 years now. As you can imagine, owning a company and having 6 kids, plus attending as many hot rod functions as we can doesn't leave much time to work on the cars. We hope to have the '31 on the road in a few months though, as it's getting really close to being finished thanks to good friends Bob Hamilton and Bernie Bank!
For the past several years I've been eyeballing a 1941 Ford Tudor Deluxe Sedan stuffed in a garage a few blocks away from my house. Zeke had the car for about 4 years and I had bugged him since he bought it to sell it to me. In May of this year I stopped by to see if he'd sell it and he said "got money?".
"Uh, no. Can you wait until I sell my scooter?"
"Gimme two weeks."
Well I sold my motorcycle in about five days (I knew it'd sell fast, it was gorgeous and everyone loved it!) and bought the '41. Worked out some real troublesome fuel delivery problems, overheating problems, and electrical problems. Now it runs great!
The car was restored inside-out and underneath about 25 years ago. The laquer is chequed and thin in places, a really NICE patina to it. I love people asking me when I'm gonna paint it. Why would I ruin that gorgeous patina? Stupid people! Really the only variances from stock are the cheesy aluminum wheels, de-arched leafs, and dual exhaust with Smithy's.
I bought a set of steelies for it, along with '41 caps and rings. If I can get my buddy Rob to take a moment to clean/prime/shoot 'em I'll mount them up and go cruisin! We've driven it 2200 miles this summer!
The 1960 Bel-Air 2 door post I bought out of a field in 1995 for $1000. The car was COMPLETE except for the generator with good glass. I found 3 generators in the trunk when I got it home. The plans for it (someday) are a mostly stock appearing restoration with a bored and stroked 409 (can you say 496? I knew you could!), lowered, with wheels.
My '62 Buick Invicta wagon is a great runner and driver. It's been sitting around neglected for too long though. I'm pulling the wheels off of the '41 and putting them on this car, then cutting the coils. The Torque Thrusts are long gone, it has those ugly painted 8 spoke wagon wheels on it now… barf. Should make a world of difference!
Every single one of my kids have had a hand in building at least some part of our cars. Whether it's holding wrenches or even sanding the Model A's hood sides. Builder's tip: little fingers work GREAT for sanding louvers!!!
All of them want to build a car of their own soon. I'd like to be able to have one done for each of them before they get their licenses, but that's 6 cars and a LOT of time and money. Of course, they're required to help and invest some of their own money.
So there's my hot rodding family, and I haven't even had a chance to tell you about my great dad and his cars, or how we share the passion for this great lifestyle!