Late Post For Labor Day

I hope everyone is enjoying their Labor Day. The holiday exists to honor the contributions that workers have made to the country. For me, from the time I was 6 until I was 22 Labor Day was a horrible day signifying the end of summer and the return to school. Even though I was a very good student, I hated being in school. I felt like I was in a cage stripped of my freedom.

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OK, here is a photo from Corvettes at Carlisle 2018 showing the split window of the 1963 Vette I showed in an earlier post. Corvette fans know the story and the rest of you probably don’t care, but designer Bill Mitchell felt the Stingray coupe HAD to have a split window in order to be true to the “spine” theme of the car. Engineer Zora Arkus-Duntov hated the split window because it obstructed rearward vision. For 1964 and afterward, Duntov won the battle and the split window was removed. Of course, that created a classic as the split window was only available in 1963 coupes, of which just 10,594 were produced. 1963 was the first model year in which a coupe body was available for the Corvette and now is the only year of the C2 generation (1963-1967) where coupes are more valuable than convertibles.

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They’re multiplying!

In this post I showed a similar picture except it only showed three signs. I purchased the Willys sign at Carlisle and it is the only porcelain sign of the bunch; the rest are made of tin. Fortunately or unfortunately—depends on the perspective—I don’t have room left for any more of these signs on this part of the garage wall.

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I am asking for honest, constructive feedback. What do you like about this blog and what don’t you like? Don’t be mean, but feel free to express your honest views. Thanks.

 

I Want These, Too…

First, Happy Birthday to my amazing niece! She reads the blog (oh, she’s the one!).

Auto Signs AACA July 2018

Two signs from the AACA Museum in Hershey. The title of this post says it all. I would love to own signs like this, but our garage is not that large and I don’t know where else they could be displayed. In the meantime I have to satisfy myself with trinkets like this:

Auto Trinkets

Once again, I ask you to start thinking about the cars that would be in your Ultimate Garage and feel free to comment on them. Oh, maybe something like this:

See the source image

From awheelthing.com (clever name, IMO) a picture of an E-Type Jaguar. Upon seeing the E-Type for the first time, Enzo Ferrari supposedly called it the most beautiful car he had ever seen. It sure is a lot closer to the top than to the bottom.

It’s A Sickness

That’s a picture from our garage. Of course, the signs are not originals. Original signs like these in good condition are not cheap.

Why am I obsessed with cars in general and defunct American makes in particular? The simple answer is I don’t really know. My father was a mechanic who operated his own gas/service station. (Flying A and Amoco!) Therefore, I grew up around automobiles. Before I discovered sports or girls or music, I kept one of those hard back notebooks with the funky black and white covers (composition notebook?) filled with notes about cars. I wish I still had that today.

So, do I diverge from defunct makes and write about the car my father almost purchased or do I stick with defunct makes? Eenee, Meenee, Minee, Mo… Hey, stream of consciousness can be fun although it implies consciousness in the first place. 🙂

Take a guess which direction I chose…a picture I took of a Studebaker GT Hawk at a local auto show last year. This show, which is an annual event, had more than 600 vehicles on display and is my favorite car show of the year. Any car that is at least 25 years old can be displayed and the cars go back to the turn of the last century.

How many of you reading this have any familiarity with Studebaker? My wonderful wife’s father owned one when he was in his 20s. Most accounts I have read of the demise of Studebaker identify the causes as: the GM-Ford price/output war of the early 1950s that put great pressure on all of the independent (non Big Three) automobile companies, Studebaker management/Studebaker unions allowing/forcing per unit labor costs to be non-competitive and Studebaker management screwing up the 1953-54 cars by bodging the design of the sedans and underestimating the demand for the coupes.

Whatever the reasons, Studebaker production declined from about 321,000 in 1950 to about 60,000 in 1961, a drop of 81 percent. In December of 1963 Studebaker ended all automobile production in the US, closing its plant in South Bend, Indiana. The company manufactured a small volume of cars until March of 1966 at its plant in Hamilton, Ontario.

Studebaker

I love this logo, which was Studebaker’s logo for its last 10-12 years as an automaker. I’ll have to find one in three dimensions somewhere.

Once again, I ask that if you are a regular reader please tell others about this blog, please “follow” the blog and please feel free to post comments. Thanks.