A Hiatus

As I have some important personal business to conduct, both individually and with my wonderful wife, after today I will not post for 7-10 days. Wish me/us luck as I/we will need more than our share. Good luck and I have been estranged for a long time.

Please don’t forget this blog; I will return, barring an unforeseen disaster. Here are the three most-read posts so far this year, not including the About page:

 

Where Is Cristy Lee?

Another Weird Dream…

Monday Mishegas

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What is the life span of the average blog? Two blogs I followed regularly have either been discontinued or are not likely to be continued. According to some research, the average blog is “dead” after just 100 days.

Today is day number 979 for Disaffected Musings. I guess I should feel good about that, but people can keep writing a blog even if no one is reading. I am grateful for the boost in readership since April, even though I know much/most of it is due to bad circumstances beyond my control.

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This recent article from Classic Cars is titled, “Dreaming of doing a restoration? Read this to avoid a nightmare.” I think the sub-title is quite funny, “Seriously, do not pass Go and do not collect $200 until you’ve considered the time and the cost and the labor involved.”

Here are the two key paragraphs in the piece, IMO:

 

“However, car restoration is not for the faint hearted and it is never — I repeat — never inexpensive. There are no bargains on restorations, only bad restorations or good restorations. There is also no such thing as a driver-level restoration. There is only one way to restore a car and that is completely. Any car that is described as partially restored is likely to have had a brake job and a fresh coat of paint, and not a bare metal respray just a scuff and a new paint finish over the old one. That is not a restoration.”

“Yes, there are a number of shops that will say you can restore your car inexpensively and will give you a quote for say $25,000. Do not believe what they tell you. If you go this route one of two things will happen, either you will get a bad quality job or you will have the shop owner calling you every few weeks to tell you that again your car’s restoration requires more money. This is what people in the industry call the elevator ride.”

 

The author advises people who want a driver quality car, and not a concours level automobile, to simply find such a car and buy it without attempting any major work.

I have often written that I do not want to own a de facto museum exhibit in the form of an automobile that is too nice to drive. While I would upgrade an older car with modern systems (such as Electronic Fuel Injection) where possible, I would not attempt a full-blown “restoration.” Even the resto-mod C2 Corvette I thought about having built would have been my daily driver, not that I drive much. (I’ve driven my Z06 about 3,700 miles in 18 months.)

On the other hand, I absolutely do not believe in being penny-wise and pound-foolish when it comes to cars or anything else. Cars need maintenance and maintenance usually costs money. Any used car we buy after (if?) we move will immediately go into a shop for service.

Speaking of my Z06, here’s a recent photo that I am 99% sure has not been displayed here before.

 

 

See you on the flip side, I hope. I would still welcome another guest post from a regular reader.

 

#AHiatus

#LifespanOfAverageBlog

#BeCarefulWithRestorations

#My2016CorvetteZ06!

#somanycarsjustonelife

#disaffectedmusings

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Throwback Thursday/C8 Reveal Day

See the source image

 

From torquenews.com one of many renderings by “ChazCron” of the C8 Corvette as well as the announcement of the reveal date, which is today, of course. Since most of us were not invited to the event in Tustin, California I think you can watch here. If you live on the East Coast, the event doesn’t start until 10:30 or 11 PM.

I think that the entire future of the Corvette could be decided by the success, or lack thereof, of the C8. While Chevrolet/GM can rationalize the sharp decline in Corvette sales since 2014—the first model year of the C7—by “blaming” the drop on the rumors surrounding the C8, the American automotive landscape has changed dramatically. In the back of my mind I wonder if the upcoming discontinuation of the Camaro has as much to do with helping the Corvette as with declining Camaro sales. Of course, if that were really true then Camaro production would probably be stopped before 2022 or 2023.

 

Schedule of Events for the C8 Corvette Reveal Now Public

 

From corvetteblogger.com a picture of an invitation to and the schedule of the C8 reveal. I really hope the C8 is a success although I have no desire to own one at present. I think it would be a shame if Chevrolet didn’t get to produce the two millionth Corvette, which is about 300,000 units away.

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From cargurus.com a picture of an example of the last year of the C4 Corvette, 1996:

 

See the source image

 

While I am not a big fan of their TV commercials, my wonderful wife and I both found our current Corvettes on CarGurus. As I have written before, I have not always been a big fan of the C4. For many years I thought the styling was bland and until the introduction of the “new” LT-1 engine in 1992 I don’t think the cars were great performers. However, I have grown to appreciate the looks of the later models of the C4. In addition, the 1995 and 1996 models had improved fuel injectors that were better able to deal with ethanol content in gasoline, or as I call it, the corn farmers subsidy program.

As almost every Corvette fan or person in the collector car business knows, C4 Corvettes are not expensive at all. A search on AutoTrader, limited to a 100-mile radius of my house, unearthed six 1995 or 1996 Corvettes with list prices under $10,000. A nationwide search, but only for cars with 75,000 miles or fewer, revealed 18 such cars under $10,000. Of course, if you don’t have to have a 1995 or 1996 model then your choices multiply greatly. C4 production totaled 359,028 in the 13 model years it was manufactured (1984-96).

The Corvette world will never be the same after today. I would very much like to read your thoughts, either before or after the reveal or both.

 

#C8CorvetteReveal

#C4Corvette

#somanycarsjustonelife

#disaffectedmusings

If you like this blog please tell your friends and share the blog URL (https://disaffectedmusings.com). Thanks.

 

Friday Ferrari

Having declared my preference for Ferrari over Lamborghini I thought I would start with something I found amusing in this article from Automobile Magazine. The article is about being able to drive the Ferrari Portofino for one week. Here is, once again, the Portofino:

See the source image

From motoringresearch.com a picture of a Ferrari Portofino. This excerpt (Edgar shout-out!) is what I found amusing: “At a stoplight, one guy in a big SUV looked down into the open Ferrari and offered: ‘Let’s trade. You can have my truck. And the three kids in back. And my wife.’ His wife was in the passenger seat. She did not appear to be laughing.”

The predecessor to the Portofino, the California, was in my first Ultimate Garage as well as my wonderful wife’s. I apologize if I write too much about Ultimate Garage for your tastes, but I will offer the second version at some point in this blog. (A real tangent: I struggle with prepositions. “In” or “On?” “For” or “To?” Maybe that struggle results from the fact that English was not the only language I spoke growing up and that my parents were not from the US.) I would also like to show readers’ Ultimate Garages so please feel free to submit yours. Maybe I’ll even use one of them as a post if it’s written well enough.

The Portofino is lighter (by almost 200 pounds) than the California, yet more rigid. It is also a tad more powerful; its engine produces 591 HP and 561 LB-FT of torque. (The same numbers for the California were 552 HP/557 LB-FT.) Subjectively I don’t think the Portofino looks much different than the California, but both cars are gorgeous in the Ferrari tradition.

The Portofino is the “entry-level” Ferrari. The base MSRP is just north of $200,000, but it’s easy to push that closer to $300,000 with options. I think Ferrari is one of the very few car makers who can get away with charging $4,000+ for Apple Car Play. In the Automobile Magazine article the test car, which had many options, had an MSRP of almost $270,000. More Americans than you can imagine can afford a Ferrari. About 2,500 of them were sold in the US in 2017. By comparison Lamborghini, which makes fewer cars than Ferrari, sold about 1,100 cars in the US last year.

 

#somanycarsjustonelife

#disaffectedmusings