Early one Tuesday morning, a few of us from Vacaville, took off on a road trip up to Santa Rosa (about 50 miles and my hometown) to have lunch with some other area hot rodders at Fred Stokes ranch just north of town. Each week, self proclaimed chef Charlie Brown, fires up the barbecue and puts some sodas on ice out by the old barbershop and cooks up hamburgers for about 40 or so hungry car guys that drop in to Fred's ranch for a meal and some bench racing. And believe me, there is some real great bench racing stories tossed around the lunch table as regionally well know NHRA F Gas record holder Ed Bingelli (former owner of Bing's Speed Shop) and Vern Tardell builder and author of "How to Build A Traditional Ford-Based Hot Rod" and Bonneville Salt Flats record holder in BFMR (Blown Fuel Modified Roadster) @ 166.470 MPH powered by a blown flathead...were chowing down burgers and spinning stories too.
As part of our mid-week rod run, we were invited to stop by the Cavallero MotorSports & Red Ban Classics hot rod shop in the Rincon Valley area of east Santa Rosa, for a look around his operation. Red Barn is owned and operated by an old NASCAR circle track racing buddy of mine, Conrad Cavallero and his wife Dianna...some very interesting builds going on.
The Cavalleros and and several of their friends, joined us for the final leg of our run out to the Fred Stokes ranch just north of town. I thought your viewers might enjoy these photos...maybe in your Garage section as Fred Stoke is currently in the process of building a dozen '33-'34 Ford Pickup hot rods, powered by SBC's and converted to motion through a 9-inch Ford rearend. You'll note from the photos of the production line, that each one is as close to identical as possible. None of the hot rod pickups are sold at this time as Fred told us that he doesn't want the pressure of buyers asking him when their rides will be finished. When they are completed and ready to drive off, they'll go up for sale. As you can see, we had a great lunch and were allowed to roam freely through Freds shop and storage building where we saw some amazing collections of old car parts and related items.
Oh...almost forgot to mention that Fred has the worlds largest oil can collection housed in a meticulously preserved old country store next to the hot rod shop. Fred also has an old Signal gas station set up on the property as well as a church. A truly great place to visit if your an a traditional hot rod enthusiast or not.