what ever happened to the true hot rodder spirit?



what ever happened to the true hot rodder spirit?

Postby grumpyvette » November 14th, 2010, 3:41 pm

when I was younger most of the (COOL GUYS) had muscle cars, like 440 road runners or big block corvettes, and a few had novas and camaros with big block engines and if it was 100% dealer stock you were looked at as rather incompetent at best and probably thought of as a mechanical moron that could not do his own modifications
the (SUPER COOL GUYS) had seriously modified cars like big block Chevy powered Vegas and 460 powered ford pintos, or if you were really cool something like a chopped 32-34 ford, big block chevy powered jag,or similar early car, that weighted less than about 2600lbs because a great deal of the stock components were now in dumpsters and a custom frame, suspension and interior had been added, also it was mandatory that the car came with a killer engine and drive train,sequential tail lights,a tubbed rear with room for huge tires but still maintaining a fairly stock stance and outward appearance , from a distance, custom bucket seats, were almost required
any car having a fiberglass ,tip off front cap ,a roll cage and an all aluminum sheet metal interior with two custom bucket seats , was "ultra cool", but the main thing you wanted was a car that would run on the street , without breaking down,and still crack the 11-or at least the 12 second barrier with street tires, and not draw a great deal of attention with the cars looks or sound from any real distance simply because NO ONE, wanted to be pulled over regularly by the local cops.
, from what Ive seen lately ,It seems the trend of installing the largest engines in the smallest and lightest of weight cars is rather rare lately.
whats your project look like?
what are you working on?

Image
Image
how about a 500 caddy in a jag?
Image
big block DATSUN??

http://www.v8monza.com/faq-exhaust.htm

http://www.brokenkitty.com/xj/xjv8.htm

viewtopic.php?f=50&t=8813&p=31418#p31418

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SzjnyLrb ... re=related

http://www.jaguarv8conversions.com/

http://www.midwesthotrodsandmusclecars. ... 20Rod.html
IF YOU CAN,T SMOKE THE TIRES AT WILL,FROM A 60 MPH ROLLING START YOUR ENGINE NEEDS MORE WORK!!"!
IF YOU CAN , YOU NEED BETTER TIRES AND YOUR SUSPENSION NEEDS MORE WORK!!
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Re: what ever happened to the true hot rodder spirit?

Postby DorianL » November 14th, 2010, 6:08 pm

Its still alive over here. I've seen guys run propane on turbocharged vw beetles!!!! Little tiny scrolls. They ran propane cuz they new it could take a lot of boost.

Ford Anglias with no rear seats... Just a chevy V8. Fiat 500s the same. Massive amounts of hardcore fabrication.

Some really cool stuff here. Very creative.
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Re: what ever happened to the true hot rodder spirit?

Postby Michael » December 5th, 2010, 9:26 pm

It’s a long and insidious combination of factors. Cars have gotten more complicated and less friendly towards the home-mechanic, people in general have become less interested in the mechanical arts, there are more distractions and less leisure-time for pursuing hobbies, and the “classic” cars are more and more difficult to find.

When I got started in Datsuns, in the late 1990’s, there were still plenty of those cars in junkyards. 10-12 years later the situation is quite different. I would imagine that something similar is happened with muscle cars, only earlier. The performance aftermarket seems to be doing well – the car magazines are full of ads for aftermarket parts. But it appears that true do-it-yourself cobbling together of custom parts has become supplanted by bolt-on kit assembly.

Grumpy’s specific point about “what happened to small cars with big engines” is very acutely posed. I mean, even today there are plenty of folks building Chevelles and Road Runners, but it’s rare to find anything under 3000 pounds. Part of the reason is that hot rodders have fractured into tribes. One tribe insists on domestic-American only, refusing to have anything to do with Jaguar, BMW, Datsun, Mazda, whatever. The opposing camp things that “Japanese Domestic Market” is the only proper route to performance, and if it ain’t fuel-injected turbo, it’s junk. To cross-breed between manufacturers, transplanting a big V8 into a small (typically imported) chassis, one has to be brand-agnostic and not beholden to tribal identity. And that’s become increasingly rare. Secondly, the aftermarket has aggressively promoted traditional, mainstream cars. It’s just so much easier to build a BBC Camaro than a BBC Jaguar because the Camaro has vast aftermarket support. There is so much less risk, so much less chance of bungling things in a mainstream build. And that goes back to the deterioration of individual skill. If we become dependent on aftermarket bolt-on parts, we’re going to be shepherded into mainstream cars – and those generally are not small cars with big engines.

Then there’s the question of weight. Everything is heavy these days – even subcompacts. A few years ago there was an informative story on a Corvette engine swap into a Pontiac Solstice. Personally I think that the Solstice is a beautiful car, but it’s underpowered. The obvious solution would be a V8 swap. Well, first of all, this is intensely complicated in a modern car. But never mind that. The main point is that the stock Solstice isn’t much lighter than a stock Corvette! The magazine commented that without aggressive use of weight-saving tricks, the swapped Solstice might have come out at about the same weight as a C6 Corvette… in which case, one wonders whether it would not have been more straightforward to just modify a Corvette!

My project, a BBC Datsun Z, is, uh, again “coming together”. It’s been a LONG time – started in 1999. Just reinstalled the engine over the weekend, and am now shopping around for an ignition system. With luck and fortitude, it might return to operating under its own power this spring. Weighs 2600 pounds, engine displaces 461 cubes.
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Re: what ever happened to the true hot rodder spirit?

Postby Randy_W » December 6th, 2010, 8:05 am

I had a '75 Olds Starfire (Monza 2+2 clone) My buddy and I installed a warmed over 455 Pontiac and 10.75" clutch, left the Saginaw 4 speed in there. Moved the radiator forward and slanted it like a Vette, couldn't afford a bigger radiator so I used two junkyard huge assed truck heater cores, one behind each headlight set. Got one of the real early wound cable Pinto steering columns so I could bend it around the exhaust and welded the GM end on it (yea, I was young ans stupid). Narrowed an 8.5" rear from something, don't remember what now, we did the axles ourselves and they never broke, no clue why, maybe not enough traction. Ran the factory electric fuel pump and oil pressure sensor. Did some bracing under the front to keep both sides together and pointing in the right direction. I didn't have any money so we hunted through all the stuff at my buddy's place and found a pair of springs that kept the front low but didn't fall on the frame over bumps. I had a blast with that car and had less than $3500 in it in 1980. I paid $2800 for the car with the 231 V6 in it. That's a lot harder to do nowadays, can't scrounge through most salvage yards and not many young people have access to the tools and equipment we did. ;)
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Re: what ever happened to the true hot rodder spirit?

Postby grumpyvette » December 6th, 2010, 11:08 am

one of the things Ive found is that so few newer guys have welding skills or even stop to think of fabricating custom components, if they can,t BUY what they need they think it can,t be done????
when I got started in the hobby you could never find engine swap components,or custom brackets, if the local Chevy or Pontiac or mopar dealers parts department didn,t have what you needed you hit the local salvage yards, and if that proved useless you found some old geezer , or some ones dad, in a machine shop or a garage with some spare time to teach you how to fabricate or have him fabricate the required part from a cardboard & tape model of the components like motor mounts or brackets etc.
I can,t even begin to list all the swaps we did but some of the best results were an 69 AMX with a 454 bbc and a xke with a Pontiac ohc 6 cylinder and a TR6 with a 301 sbc


BTW
if your doing a SBC to BBC engine swap, you might need this bit of info on frame mounts
Image
IF YOU CAN,T SMOKE THE TIRES AT WILL,FROM A 60 MPH ROLLING START YOUR ENGINE NEEDS MORE WORK!!"!
IF YOU CAN , YOU NEED BETTER TIRES AND YOUR SUSPENSION NEEDS MORE WORK!!
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Re: what ever happened to the true hot rodder spirit?

Postby Loves302Chevy » December 23rd, 2011, 4:11 am

Sorry, I realize this post is 1 year old, but here is my 2 cents:
1) Emissions - here in CT you have to wait 25 years until your vehicle is exempt.
Right now, that puts us at 1986 and older. The 80s cars with all their plastic
parts don't last like the all steel cars of previous decades.
So if you are going to modify a vehicle that is newer, then aside from emissions-
exempt bolt-on parts, you're not going to get away with that old-school type of
hot-rodding that you describe.

2) Your statement, "...one of the things I've found is that so few newer guys have
welding skills or even stop to think of fabricating custom components, if they can,t
BUY what they need they think it can't be done????", says it all.

3) Bolt-ons are expensive. Just look at March pulley setups, for example.
You will never convince me that my stock steel pulleys don't work every
bit as good as their $800.00 setups. I would rather put that money into
something that will actually make a performance increase.

4) KIDS today who are now the same age of what guys were doing back in the 60s
and 70s are now only interested in video games and other electronic devices. The
closest they would get to hot-rodding would be if someone came out with a video game.
Or, maybe if they souped up their skateboards!

5) Junkyards are now scrap metal dealers.

6) The economy! We don't manufacture anything anymore. Our whole economy is based
reselling items bought from other countries like China and marking the price up each and
every step along the way.

I know it has been done before, but I really want to put a SBC in a fox body Mustang.
Thanks for listening, Mike.
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Re: what ever happened to the true hot rodder spirit?

Postby TBukit » November 10th, 2013, 1:40 am

Most street rodding now seems to be composed of rice burners with 1" sidewalls and mufflers-that-aren't. Nevertheless, the Steampunk movement may yet gravitate toward the vehicular genre, and perhaps bring some of the younger crowd into the hot rod fold.

I was away from hot rodding for many years, and for many reasons. When gas went sky high, I did finally buy another motorcycle, but cell phones and traffic congestion have finally convinced me to stop riding. The Triumph is now off the road, but five years of daily riding have apparently implanted a renewed need for speed in my physche. I just couldn't take the F-150 as a commuter, so I started looking for something different. What I settled on was the lowly T-bucket. Not the most practical vehicle ever made, I am nevertheless determined to turn it into a near-daily driver. A taller windshield, folding canvas top, wind wings, custom side curtains, removable tonneau cover and fenders are in the works. Eventually, I'll also add a heater, some tunes and enough stainless pieces to calm my fears about rust.

The car is immensely fun. With a horsepower-to-weight ratio approaching 20, it's not only a street rocket, but way faster than the bike it has replaced. What I also hope for, however, is that the car will thrill others, that it will be seen and recognized as a possibility they hadn't considered. People sometimes pull into the left-turn lane just to drive alongside and gawk at the car in rush hour. Others yell out the window and ask if I drive it everyday. If only one of those people realizes they can do the same, that they can break the mold, I'll be satisfied. There may never be a stream of hot rods on the roadways to work, but at least the presence of this one will remind others that there's more to life than a boring hour's drive in the latest boring import. Considering that the latest gawker yelled "I bet that beats a Prius," maybe I'm already succeeding! :D

Jack
Previous Rods: '57 T-bird 327/Powerglide, '63 Corvette Coupe 327 4-sp, '64 Corvette Convert 396 4-sp,
'72 Corvette Coupe 454 Auto, '73 Corvette Coupe 454 4-sp
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Re: what ever happened to the true hot rodder spirit?

Postby chromebumpers » November 10th, 2013, 10:45 am

Grumpy, sounds like the kids you grew up with had money somehow. In our town it was air shocks, ladder bars and SS Craigars and you were cool.
The sport isn't gone yet, just changed. Now it's Japan's imports with turbo-chargers or NOX and 4 inch exhaust for a 4 cylinder car (they sound like weed-wackers without mufflers).
Rich
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Re: what ever happened to the true hot rodder spirit?

Postby Indycars » November 10th, 2013, 10:46 am


Welcome to the forum Jack !!! Image

I also have been away from playing with a hotrods for about 15 years, but the last 2-1/2 have been really fun. Working to get my TBucket back on the road again, I have built a new engine and transmission [200-4R], both from scratch.

They do get alot of attention from the public, I can confirm that statement!!! :)

Please post several pics, would love to see more of your TBucket. Ten pics would not be too many if you have them.

This is mine, it's a little dirty, but it had been sitting for ten years when I took that photo just before pulling it apart in preparation for the rebuild. It was completed in 1980 the first time.

TBucketRearView_0002.jpg


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Re: what ever happened to the true hot rodder spirit?

Postby grumpyvette » November 10th, 2013, 12:09 pm

chromebumpers wrote:Grumpy, sounds like the kids you grew up with had money somehow. In our town it was air shocks, ladder bars and SS Craigars and you were cool.
The sport isn't gone yet, just changed. Now it's Japan's imports with turbo-chargers or NOX and 4 inch exhaust for a 4 cylinder car (they sound like weed-wackers without mufflers).


that would be an erroneous assumption, what we did have was a good set of connections with salvage yards, a work ethic, and most of us had jobs and a willingness to trade for or work for parts.
it took me over 3 years in college, and two years after I was married to build a big block chevy for my pontiac lemans, to the specs I wanted it
and that was doing side jobs almost every weekend plus holding a full time job at the phone company.
I did a whole lot of brake jobs and tune ups ....but keep in mind back in the 1970s a brand new set of open chamber big block iron cylinder head bare castings came across the dealer parts counter for $150, and a L88 cam and lifters cost under $78 a whole LS& 454 500 plus hp engine cost $1270 and that was about 13 weeks pay at the time... to day a similar engine costs $9K -$12K


viewtopic.php?f=38&t=898&p=3239&hilit=1965+lemans#p3239

viewtopic.php?f=87&t=4687&p=12679&hilit=1965+lemans#p12679
IF YOU CAN,T SMOKE THE TIRES AT WILL,FROM A 60 MPH ROLLING START YOUR ENGINE NEEDS MORE WORK!!"!
IF YOU CAN , YOU NEED BETTER TIRES AND YOUR SUSPENSION NEEDS MORE WORK!!
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Re: what ever happened to the true hot rodder spirit?

Postby chromebumpers » November 10th, 2013, 12:42 pm

grumpyvette wrote:
chromebumpers wrote:Grumpy, sounds like the kids you grew up with had money somehow. In our town it was air shocks, ladder bars and SS Craigars and you were cool.
The sport isn't gone yet, just changed. Now it's Japan's imports with turbo-chargers or NOX and 4 inch exhaust for a 4 cylinder car (they sound like weed-wackers without mufflers).


that would be an erroneous assumption, what we did have was a good set of connections with salvage yards, a work ethic, and most of us had jobs and a willingness to trade for or work for parts.
it took me over 3 years in college, and two years after I was married to build a big block chevy for my pontiac lemans, to the specs I wanted it
and that was doing side jobs almost every weekend plus holding a full time job at the phone company.
I did a whole lot of brake jobs and tune ups ....but keep in mind back in the 1970s a brand new set of open chamber big block iron cylinder head bare castings came across the dealer parts counter for $150, and a L88 cam and lifters cost under $78 a whole LS& 454 500 plus hp engine cost $1270 and that was about 13 weeks pay at the time... to day a similar engine costs $9K -$12K




viewtopic.php?f=38&t=898&p=3239&hilit=1965+lemans#p3239

viewtopic.php?f=87&t=4687&p=12679&hilit=1965+lemans#p12679



Geez Grumpy! I guess we're on 2 different pages. I was referring to teen kids of driving age like 16 to 19 and in high school. Where I grew up the older guys with serious hotrods were not regularly seen like the younger kids. With a multitude of variations they (the older guys) had the best they could afford, were working - some even two jobs, but they didn't hang out at the shopping center lots because they had their own place, married or at the track.
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Re: what ever happened to the true hot rodder spirit?

Postby grumpyvette » November 10th, 2013, 12:53 pm

before I got out of high school, I had a job, but I could not afford to do much more than afford gas and maintain a 1965 rambler I used for transportation.
Image
I could hardly wait to get up the coin required to sell that flat head 6 cylinder car, but looking back, it was good dependable transportation, I wish I still owned!
I traded that in as soon as I could for a formula 400 firebird

Image
and shortly after bought a 1965 lemans as a project car
Image

all these cars look like clones to the first cars I owned
IF YOU CAN,T SMOKE THE TIRES AT WILL,FROM A 60 MPH ROLLING START YOUR ENGINE NEEDS MORE WORK!!"!
IF YOU CAN , YOU NEED BETTER TIRES AND YOUR SUSPENSION NEEDS MORE WORK!!
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Re: what ever happened to the true hot rodder spirit?

Postby chromebumpers » November 10th, 2013, 1:11 pm

My first car (at 16) was a $400 65 olds cutlass. It was in beautiful "Looking" condition. Got it home and radiator leaked, heater core leaked. The next couple of years was a lot of sub $500 cars that while still in school I couldn't afford anything that went bad. The older guy (about mid twenties came along and loved it. that same day he came back to show me how he fixed it and polished that Burgundy paint to showroom condition and put Corvette rallye wheels on it (he was a mechanic) I worked at McDonalds!
Rich
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Re: what ever happened to the true hot rodder spirit?

Postby 87vette81big » November 13th, 2013, 7:17 am

Its still present the true hotrodder spirit.
Just most can no longer afford today.
Economic downturn since 2007.
Homeless & jobless.
Slamacare coming soon to all.
Only the Best & Most Resourceful have survived.
More will drop off in 2014.
Just super expensive.
Unless you have planned ahead like me.

When is the last time anyone You Know went and built a full Drag Racing effort 8-second Ride ???
Prior to Bama it was about 5-10 every year around me.
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Re: what ever happened to the true hot rodder spirit?

Postby philly » January 18th, 2014, 2:29 pm

lots of guys still using the big motor small car formula here in miami, a few v8 miatas, rx7's, datsuns, however as far as street cars (and im out racing every night) there are literally no big block cars. obviously alot of LS based performance but theres still a strong gathering of small block fords and gen 1 chevies in the mix.

the only big block powered cars down here are trailer queens that frequent the eighth mile track here. id love to have a 460 swapped fox body mustang or a big block split bumper camaro but ive got too much other stuff going on.
-phil

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Re: what ever happened to the true hot rodder spirit?

Postby 87vette81big » January 18th, 2014, 2:46 pm

A Stroked Big Block Ford 460 in a 5.0 Fox Mustang is a terror on the street.
Have to be a real good driver. Short wheelbase. Handling just aveage.
Lightweight around 2500-2700 # stripped down to basic necessities . Race style.

Reason why 5.0 stang pipular.
Many made. Buy it cheap.
Build up without much investment .
Fast when done. Reliable. Solid axle rear.
No IRS To blow out.
Win street races if you want to.
Win at track easy except against Pro Mod style Chevy & Mopar & Pontiac Race cars.
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