Sunday, January 31, 2010

BeaterBlog Vintage Archives, 1970 Mont-Tremblant Can-Am Race

With barely single digit temperatures I can't bring myself to step inside the garage, but my dad's basement the BeaterBlog archives are warm and toasty. In the summer of 1970 my dad made his way from an army base in California to Quebec for the Can-Am race at Circuit Mont-Tremblant.

Sunday, January 24, 2010

*UPDATE - Solutions* Celebratory Crossword - Know Your Lincolns Before Tomorrow's Anniversary

Tomorrow is Lincoln's 90th anniversary of making large, fluffy cars bearing a myriad of special edition nameplates. To commemorate this, you should test your Lincoln knowledge with this so-themed crossword puzzle!

Solutions to be posted later in the week.

Friday, January 22, 2010

Marketplace Feature: Tell 'em he's dreamin' - 3 Checkers for $380,000

When mileage of vintage cars is around the zero mark, the value skyrockets for some reason. Is it some strange brand of vehicular masochism that forces people to shell out wheelbarrows full of cash for 'just okay' cars that they would feel far too guilty to ever drive? Who knows, but a few case in point cars are listed here, here, and here on eBay.

Checkers are no doubt historic and iconic cars and these particular Checkers are very special. But how special does a Taxi have to be to bring $150-200k? Well, the bare shell listed for $10k is THE last Checker, or rather the last car made after the last salable Checker Marathon was built. Ten grand is a lot of money for a Checker but this one seems like the comparative bargain. Check out the 19 mile 1981 Marathon and the 22 mile 1982 Marathon sedan, selling for $150,000 and $200,000 respectively.

Victor's Law of Vehicular Adhesion

I have found that car enthusiasts are often annoyed with people who cannot drive.  Despite being an Asian, I am not an exception.  After a couple years of driving, I've noticed a couple things that occur on Michigan roads and since this is a car blog, I'd thought it most appropriate to share my thoughts here.  Not quite beater related, just something a little different.

Monday, January 18, 2010

Before They Were Beaters: 1975 Fiat 124 Sedan

Frenchman Remy Jullienne says he leaves nothing to chance when risking his life for movie stunts, obviously that's why he chose a Fiat sedan. Being a stunt driver for over 1400 films definitely gives a guy a bit of street cred. Enough so to be commissioned as the stunt driver for a French language remake of Starsky and Hutch, predictably titled "Starsky et Hutch" (this is actually true).

Now that's credibility. Maybe advertisements like this could make this whole Fiat/Chrysler thing work.

Sunday, January 17, 2010

In the Garage - AMC Javelin Ball Joint Fiasco Preview

Ball joints are service items, right? Then why the hell are they riveted in place?!

This means that in order to replace upper or lower ball joints you must first remove from the vehicle both upper and lower control arms, spring, shock, knuckle, caliper, rotor and whatever else falls off with it.

Check back for project updates as I rebuild, stiffen, and realign the front suspension of Kenosha's finest.

Beat on the Street - Home Sweet Home Edition: 1976 Chevrolet Impala

This Impala has been spotted repeatedly in the AA park and ride lot near Hwy. 94 and other locations throughout the metro area. In the summer, the windows are down. In the winter, the windows are up and layered with cardboard. I've seen it in several places around town but I've never seen it move during the day.

When you love a car so much that there is no other conceivable option but to take up residency inside of it, then you are in clear possession the beater enthusiast trump card, if little else. This card can then be played in conversation with other shitbox driving gearheads when they elaborate on exactly what their vehicle has gotten them through, or the connection between car and driver.

Saturday, January 16, 2010

Latch-Key Kids nominated for LeMons Wall of Blame.

The Latch-Key Kids have had an epic LeMons career spanning Detroit, Ohio, Texas and California without finishing lower than fifth. Now you can help us get some of the respect due a Chia-pet themed Plymouth. 10 teams are being inducted in the LeMons Wall of Blame and we've been nominated. Follow the link below and vote Latch-Key in 2010.


Tuesday, January 12, 2010

PRI Highlight - Ilmore Sprint Motor

Tired of trying to sort out componentry for your 2.5 turbo Caravan project? Screw it, just go with this Ilmore Sprint car motor and still keep it all in the family.

Not unlike the Mercruiser 181, the Chevy II 194, or IH 154, this big four is V8 derivative. Using one Dodge NASCAR V8 cylinder head mated to a custom cast block, this engine shares many common Mopar performance parts with its Sprint Cup brother. Now how great would four velocity stacks look sticking out of the hood of a woodgrain Town and Country?

Before They Were Beaters: Saab 96

The weather in Detroit is tough to face, but not if you've got a front-wheel drive Saab 96. With 73 HP of V-4 fury, low drag aerodynamics, and diagonally split brake circuits, it could take on just about anything. Except maybe the financial Apocalypse. I assume after Saab has completed its "winding down" GM will not honor the LIFETIME GUARANTEE on Saab's V-4 engine.

Thursday, January 7, 2010

Beat on the Street: Hyper Milage Hilux

From Drop Box
Effective home brew aero modifications can be difficult. Without a wind tunnel and accurate models its nearly impossible to know if your back yard side skirts reduce drag enough to offset the added weight or add more turbulence than you're trying to reduce. Or perhaps the owner of this Toyota is actually trying to increase the top speed of his rig.

Hat tip to fellow beater aficianado Vince Schrand for the photo.

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Before They Were Beaters: VW Scirroco


Posted by Picasa
Old school water cooled VWs make fine beaters and respectable track cars. Weighing a boulimic 2000 pounds and possessing an easily upgraded suspension makes for a lot of fun. Although the trans-am cars had a healthy 170 horse power, the street cars made due with 78. That was enough horse power to reach 60 mph in a leisurely 12 seconds. Consider it more time to admire the plaid seating surfaces. The well proportioned good looks have aged well and it gets great fuel economy. First gen Sciroccos are becoming increasingly rare, but only VW aficionados will realize you're not driving a Golf. You'll also need to become an expert in the finicky realm of Bosch CIS fuel injection but that's a small price to pay for a legitimate German classic from the Carter administration.

Monday, January 4, 2010

Beater Barn Find: 1962 Cadillac Sedan de Ville

Did you know that in 1962, 40 million Americans said they would rather have a Cadillac than any other car? Well it's true, according to sixties GM advertisements anyway...

Spotted right next to the DR tiller in some guy's central Ohio yard is this very ballin' and very correct '62 Caddy, sporting all of its trim and whitewall tires. It looks as though the original 390 V8 may have been snagged, as the front end is sitting unusually high. Hopefully come spring it'll be back on the road with a twin turbo 429.

Lastly, one more crazy fact: 1962 was the first year heaters were standard equipment across the Cadillac range. Crazy indeed.

Saturday, January 2, 2010

Beat on the Street - "Yella" 1971 Ford Torino SportsRoof

It appears that some people aren't too 'Yella' to drive their classic in the snow. In Michigan or any other of the salt-spewing rust belt states, you would have to be crazy to drive anything you didn't absolutely despise. But classic car obsessed North Dakota doesn't salt most roads - it dumps sand occasionally, and really just on the slick spots so it's an entirely different story.

Congratulations David and Tatiana, Matt and Allison!

Now that Facebook has made it official, the staff of Beaterblog would like to congratulate David and Tatiana, and Matt and Allison on their engagements.  Congratulations and may your love be everlasting, like our beaters.

Just in case, for those who don't know, this is the indestructible Top Gear Toyota Hilux.

Friday, January 1, 2010

Happy New Year from BeaterBlog, what are your resolutions?

Its a new year. Time to look back at the past year and make half-hearted resolutions about the next 12 months. Perhaps you're actually going to find that bell-housing or weld in those floor pans on your lawn ornament. I resolve not to buy any more project cars.