Shift Happens: Quick peek at a 1967 Chevelle we’re going to review

Old cars are better. We know this and you know this, and that’s why we want to feature more old or interesting cars on our YouTube channel whenever possible. We’re still going to cover new car stuff as well, but it’s the older metal that really gets us going. Case in point: this 1967 Chevrolet Chevelle.

Owned by a friend, we’ve been angling to shoot this car for awhile. Now we’re going to get off our asses and make that a reality. Then we’re going to shoot the owners other car, which is an old Nova… and after that we’ll shoot his El Camino.

From there, we’re looking to get our hands on anything old, cool, interesting, unique, whatever… just something to break up the onslaught of new-car videos we’ve been bringing you for a bit now.

These won’t be quick Shift Happens-type videos like the one above either. We’re going to break out the big cameras and shoot them with the care and respect they deserve… at least, at the level we can provide. We’re not Petrolicious, so we’re happy to see them keep doing beautiful films.

Ours will be a dive into the car itself and hopefully we’ll learn something about the person who owns and drives them as well.

Paint stripper gets to work attacking the old finish on the Porsche 911

Jeff Glucker August 9, 2017 All Things Hoon

Larry Kosilla is documenting the revival of his beloved 964. His Porsche 911 is undergoing a serious restoration, and there are cameras pointed at it for each step. The old roof was cut out and replaced, the rust in the cowl addressed, and now the paint work is being addressed.

To remove the black paint currently on the car, the team working on it covers exterior bits with aircraft paint stripper. After just 15 minutes or so of sitting on a painted surface, the goop is aggressive enough that it starts causing the paint to rip, pop, and pull away from the metal surface. It’s fascinating to watch it work its chemical magic.

For Larry, it’s clearly hard to watch his car undergo such a step but it’s a necessary one. As paint is being removed, the skilled person working on it can tell how many times the rear fender has been repainted. Much more of his skill is shown, however, when working on the hood.

Every minute little blemish is dealt with so that this hood should be perfect for years to come. Even the creases that start to develop from years of the hood being closed with a press of the Porsche badge are being addressed. It’s impressive effort on all involved, and we can’t wait to see it all come together in the end.

Podcast: Episode 212 – Back to the News!

We kick this one out old school… we’re bringing back the news! It’s time to return to the slightly more structured format from where we started. That means when we don’t have a guest we’re to start the episode off by running down some interesting news items from the past week or so.

Today we’re talking about:

  • Mazda getting ready to bring a production HCCI engine into its lineup.
  • Forza adds 101 more cars to Forza Motorsport 7.
  • Volkswagen says it’s going to bring us a Passat GT.
  • The Jeep Grand Cherokee Trackhawk gets a price tag.

After that, we dive into your questions and then give some updates about what we’re driving and where we’re going.

First Drive: 2018 Audi TT RS and 2018 Audi RS3

The inline five-cylinder engine is one that should be quite familiar to fans of Audi’s racing history. It will soon be familiar to fans of the latest that the German automaker has to offer and it arrives in two flavors; the new 2018 Audi TT RS and 2018 Audi RS3.

Each comes packing 400 horsepower courtesy of an inline five-cylinder engine that’s backed up by 7-speed dual-clutch gearbox.

On the outside of both cars, you’ll notice clues to the lively mill hiding between the fenders. The front fascia is more aggressive and the rear sport exhaust belches noise from a pair of large, black, oval exhaust tips.

Inside you have RS stitched into the sport seats and a bit of suede mingling with leather. If you opt for the slightly more sporty TT RS, you also get the steering wheel lifted straight out of the Audi R8. Each car has lots of character, tremendous levels of performance, and serves up delightful noise. One has room for more to party while the other is fully focused on the task at hand. You can’t make a wrong choice here, because either path leads you into the Audi Sport family and you have an RS-badged machine parked in your garage.

We check both of the vehicles out on the turns of Lime Rock Park and the open road of rural Connecticut.

[Disclaimer: Audi flew us to NYC and put us up in a swank hotel. We choppered to and from the track and ate way too much Greek food. I’m now 65% feta cheese.]

Evaluating old cars for insurance purposes is tricky business

Jeff Glucker August 7, 2017 All Things Hoon

Benjamin Hunting is a Canadian automotive journalist whose work you might read at places like Roadkill or SlashGear. He’s a friend of the site, and I’m personally a fan of the cars that Ben owns. His daily driver is a first-generation Cadillac CTS-V, but it’s his track machine that I find most appealing.

Ben has the gorgeous Datsun 240Z you see pictured above. It’s setup exactly how Ben wants it, and he drives the thing in anger on race tracks. His goal was to mimic the style one might’ve found on a Japanese weekend-warrior street and track machine from the 80’s or 90’s. It’s this aesthetic he’s wanted, and he’s worked hard to get there with his car.

Recently, Ben had the car evaluated for insurance purposes. To have his Datsun properly insured, the insuring company requires an evaluation. This means someone would come to Ben’s garage and pore over the details of his beloved machine. The problem there though, is that a car setup in this manner doesn’t exactly fit into any predefined boxes.

It’s a car that won’t be valued properly in the eyes of the person who’s pieced it together. Is it worth what Ben thinks it’s worth, what the insurance company decides it’s worth, or ultimately what someone else would pay for it in the marketplace should Ben ever decide to sell it?

It’s a tough call and arguments could be made on all sides. . (There’s more pictures of the Datsun over there too)

[Image “borrowed” from Ben’s blog]

Shift Happens: Building a McLaren 720S …LEGO car

Awhile back, the good folks at McLaren sent me a LEGO kit. It’s part of the LEGO Speed Champions series, and this one features the new McLaren 720S. It also has a designer. He’s got his drafting table, a model car, a cup of coffee, and a lamp. He’s also got a helmet, because he can jump from being the designer to being the driver.

The kit is a fun toy to have on my desk, and it was pretty easy to put together. There are a few single block pieces that are a little small, and the stickers can be tricky if you don’t take your time… especially with oafish hands like mine. But it really was a relatively quick and easy job piecing this one together.

Now I want to find more Speed Champion sets to join this one…

[Disclaimer: McLaren sent me this kit out of the blue. I think they retail in the $20 range.]

Project Car SOTU: The Benz

This year I added a new machine to my stable. I use the term stable loosely, because there’s not that much in there, and also I don’t own any horses. This is my 1974 Mercedes-Benz 280. It’s a w114 Benz, and it’s thankfully not saddled with a diesel engine. Instead, it gets the delightful inline-six cylinder engine known as the M110.

When new, it was rated at 160 horsepower and 154 pound-feet of torque. That’s not enough juice to get this thing frying the tires at a stoplight, but it will happily cruise at 80 miles per hour on the highway.

I’m not messing with the car much though, as this is a car I’ve acquired as a simple cruiser with a dash of style and personality. Also, my wife gave me the thumbs up to let my daughter ride along in the back seat.

… Continue Reading

Podcast: Episode 211 – Automotive Conduct with Ezekiel Wheeler

Our friend Ezekiel Wheeler comes by the show to talk about his fresh take on the car show. It’s a pop-up deal that happens every so often, and there are five featured cars for folks to check out and learn about from their respective owners.

We’ve also got the Audi TT-RS and RS3 to chat about, the Touge California, and then it’s on to your questions.

Project Car SOTU 2017: Welcome to our misery

It’s that time once again…

Welcome to Project Car SOTU 2017. For those of you just joining us, this is where we’re going to take the next week or so and give you updates on all of the various project cars that appear on the pages of Redusernab. It’s our State of the Union. We’ve got updates on cars, trucks, and bikes.

Some things have changed, while other things have (sadly) remained stagnant. But that’s the way it goes with project cars. You give love and attention to one, while another might languish in a dirty back lot somewhere in Garden Grove, California. That doesn’t mean you’re giving up, of course it doesn’t… keep your head in the game, this thing is going to happen.

Whoa.. sorry I spaced out for a minute there. Anyway, it’s time to kick of SOTU 2017. 

Shift Happens: The HoonTruck gets a little love

Shift Happens.

It’s time for an update on my 1965 Ford F100. She was at a local shop here in Orange County, and while there they got her running better than she has in awhile. Also, the HoonTruck has fresh front glass and dual electric cooling fans. No more mechanical fan, and no more pitted glass thanks to our friends at LMC Truck.

Let’s take a look at how the truck is doing now…