Highway Earth 2014 car show — A Star Is Born!

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My friend, photographer Evan Klein and I were having lunch one day and he said “hey, what would you think about a car show at Franklin Canyon Lake Park?”  That’s easy; the Beverly Hills location is beautiful, rustic, casual, genuine, and historic.  The park has been there for decades, and the site of countless movie and TV shoots.  In fact Evan and I had done car magazine photoshoots there together.  So I asked him what he was thinking.  Turns out that Evan and his fiance jog and walk their dogs there several times a week, and the idea just struck him one day  Over the years, he’s gotten to know many of the rangers who work the park, and upon asking them about the idea, they were most supportive.

 

The old Andy Griffithshow was filmed here, among many other 60s classics and movies.

The old Andy Griffithshow was filmed here, among many other 60s classics and movies.

His idea was an easy, fun, accessable car show for everybody to enjoy with family and friends.  Ferraris parked next to low riders; Porsches and Plymouths, run what ya brung.  No trophies, no judging, no hassle.  The car entry fee had to be low so that anyone could enter, with no spectator tickets or fees at all.  The car entry fees were there only to cover insurance and security costs.  Good inexpensive food available on site (or bring your picnic), with strolling ice cream cart vendors to keep you cool and satisfy the sweet tooth.

Heavy metal; this alcove was stocked full with American lux iron, all fins, chrome, and leather looking fine

Heavy metal; this alcove was stocked full with American lux iron, all fins, chrome, and leather looking fine

He set the date for June 29, and then began to worry.  What if he couldn’t get any cars?  What if he got cars and no spectators showed up?  What if what if?  OK, stop worrying Evan.  The idea captured everyone’s imagination, and soon, the show’s website was blowing up with entries.  He finally had to cut it off at around 150 cars, because the property wouldn’t hold a lot more.  The layout is most unusual, there’s a one-way road that circumnavigates some of the park and lake, with little alcove parking areas which were designated for Porsches, Hollywood cars, muscle, 50s, etc.  These are entirely seperate from the spectator parking area.  The complete loop around the road, in other words, to see the entire show, is an easy, level, one-to-one-and-a-quarter mile lap.  Easy stroll for most anyone, kids and pets welcome.  Some folks walked down to the lake, others took the loop several times to see what new cars might have showed up since their last lap.  Super casual.

I said variety, right?  Where else would you see a Morgan trike parked next to a Facel Vega Excellence?

I said variety, right? Where else would you see a Morgan trike parked next to a Facel Vega Excellence?

It quickly became the most exclusive, non-exclusive car show in town, with people calling accepted entrants at the last minute to see if they could get their car in.  Success!  And it was a great day; warm and clear but not too hot, and around 150 fun, great, and interesting cars, bikes, vans, and such on hand.  The variety was most engaging.  Evan did much of the work himself, leaning on a few volunteers to help get cars in the door and parked, but it was entirely the idea of one guy, and largely the effort of that same guy that got it done.  He’s already been bombarded with support to do it again next year, which I’m sure will happen, and if I’m in town, I’ll be there again, and you should be too.  Watch for announcements at www.highwayearth.com.

Job Well Done, Evan Klein, and photos here Well Done by Kirk Gerbracht.

Lots more pix below…

Alfa Force One; show honco Klein's own Alfa Spider

Alfa Force One; show honcho Klein’s own Alfa Spider

 

 

Again not something you see everyday; a Citroen 2 CV-based Mehari

Again not something you see everyday; a Citroen 2 CV-based Mehari

 

We Porshes got our own little parking alcove with a half dozen nice cars.  That's my own black '89 Carrera coupe, with a most spectacular 25000 mile 911 SC in dark gray, right next to me

We Porshes got our own little parking alcove with a half dozen nice cars. That’s my own black ’89 Carrera coupe, with a most spectacular 25000 mile 911 SC in dark gray, right next to me plus a rare and interesting Brumos edition 997 coupe on the end

 

Beauty and elegance collide in this Ferrar 250 GT "PF" Cabriolet, and check out this great, soft spoken color combo

Beauty and elegance collide in this Ferrari 250 GT “PF” Cabriolet, and check out this great, soft spoken color combo

Two of McQueen's machines: Steve's '76 930 belonging to Michael Regalia, and Dave Kunz '68 Bullitt Mustang tribute fastback

Two of McQueen’s machines: Steve’s ’76 930 belonging to Michael Regalia, and Dave Kunz ’68 Bullitt Mustang tribute fastback

 

Another rare duck: this Matra coupe runs the same Maserati designed and built V-6 as does the Citroen SM and the Maserati Merak

Another rare duck: this Matra coupe runs the same Maserati designed and built V-6 as does the Citroen SM and the Maserati Merak

 Czech Mate!  No car drew more attention and questions than this Czech born Tatra; rear engine V-8 with great Eastern Euro Deco design

Czech Mate! No car drew more attention and questions than this Czech born Tatra; rear engine V-8 with great Eastern Euro Deco design

 

Original LittleBirds are always crowd favorites, and this triple black '55 was tasty

Original LittleBirds are always crowd favorites, and this triple black ’55 was tasty

This charmingly displayed '51 Kaiser Traveller Deluxe carried what looked like all of Andy and Opie's original fishing gear

This charmingly displayed ’51 Kaiser Traveler Deluxe carried what looked like all of Andy and Opie’s original fishing gear

 

Wave to the Crowd - and see you next year at Highway Earth

Wave to the Crowd – and see you next year at Highway Earth

MUSTANG The First 50 Years; Two-DVD set now available

Mustang DVD set

I’m not plugging this DVD set because I appear in it.  I’m happy to tell you about it because it’s very good, well done, and every Mustang enthusiast will enjoy it and needs one for their DVD collection.

This documentary is very entertaining, and contains lots of solid information about the Mustang’s birth, development, and history along its first five decades. The producers, TM Books & Video, have included interviews with several members of the original Mustang’s design team, plus lots of really cool period advertising and auto show footage — cool stuff. And lots of good old and new footage of some of the most significant and interesting Mustangs.  The show runs about two and a half hours, and is officially licensed by Ford.

Great stuff here, I promise, and it’s a bargain at twenty bucks for the set.  Here’s the order blank…

Mustang DVD set order form

Cars & Coffee, Virginia Style

 

From Left, Bob's 550 Maranello, Bev, Bob, Linda, and a friends of Bev and Bob's who owns three Corvettes, including the '60 that her father bought new!

From Left, Bob’s 550 Maranello, Bev, Bob, Linda, and Kim, a friend of Bev and Bob’s who owns three Corvettes, including the ’60 that her father bought new!  And Bev’s Shelby GT-H convertible.

It all began last March on a hotel rooftop parking lot in Amelia Island, Florida. We were cruising the lot during Concours weekend, checking out cars as they rolled into and out of the RM auction that was taking place in the Ritz’ ballroom, as were Bev and Bob Steinhagen; one of them recognized me from television, and we all struck up a conversation. Bev and Bob live in Virginia, and own 20 cool cars; Bev likes Cadillacs, Corvettes, and her Shelby GT-H convertible; Bob has Jags and Ferraris. They seemed a classy couple, and it was clear we’d become fast friends. They said “if you ever happen to be in Virginia over a weekend, we’ve got a great Cars & Coffee in Great Falls every Saturday morning that draws about 250 cars. and we’d love to meet you there as our guests.”

Like I said: Impressive!  more than 200 cars of all price and stripe showed up on this Saturday (just for me, of course!); I had no reason to think otherwise, but didn't know there was such a fabulous car community in this particular area of Virginia

Like I said: Impressive! more than 200 cars of all price and stripe showed up on this Saturday; I had no reason to think otherwise, but didn’t know there was such a fabulous car community in this particular area of Virginia

 

 

Too much nice hardware to name or count

Too much nice hardware to name or count

I was immediately hooked, as I love these 2-3 hour Saturday morning gatherings; they are in many ways, the ideal casual car show; the perfect excuse to get your cool car out, meet up with some friends, do some tire kicking and bench racing, have a coffee, then get on about your day of chores or whatever well before noon.  No judging, no trophies, no stress.  It turns out we had been contemplating a family related trip to Virginia anyway, so any excuse to check out another area’s Cars & Coffee was good enough for me. After some emails with the Steinhagens, we had a plan, and the location was an attractive multipurpose office and commercial park in Great Falls,(Northern) Virginia, not an hour from where we were staying.  This place is the perfect spot for a Cars & Coffee; large property, plenty of parking, some shady green areas, and very handsome; the colonial style buildings housed a variety of businesses, plus a couple cute places to eat breakfast or lunch.  I piloted our utterly boring rental car into the last, far corner place in the parking lot not consumed by Porsches, Jags, Ferraris, Vettes, muscle, Mercedes, and you-name-its.  The crowd numbered at least 250 cars and was damned impressive.  Some very average yet cool run whatyoubrungers to some really rare high end hardware.

 

This fabulously original 1959 190D was bought new by its original, now little old lady owner, in 1960.  It is all original, replete with matching fitted luggage set, and the original owner was there to show the car and share her story -- most coolness

This fabulous 1959 190D was bought new by its now little old lady owner, in 1960. It is all original, replete with matching fitted luggage set, and the original owner was there to show the car and share her story — most coolness

Bev and Bob introduced us to many of their friends, who were most welcoming, and impressed that I’d travel 2500 miles to attend a Cars & Coffee.  This one started out really small, as most of these events do.  It was the brainchild of a couple guys, and then ten cars showed up, and the next time it was 30, then 50, then 100, and you can guess the rest.  We had a blast with the Steinhagens and everyone we met, and enjoyed a really diverse, fun and impressive roundup of great cars.

Plenty of Bad Boy Porsches on hand too

Plenty of Bad Boy Porsches on hand too

If you don’t have one of these events near you, I think its high time you start one.  You don’t need much more than a small group of folks that want to do it, a friendly parking lot or shopping center willing to host, and an email tree, and then these things tend to grow legs and feed on themselves.

Talk about rare; how often do you see an Intermeccanica Italia anywhere?

Talk about rare; how often do you see an Intermeccanica Italia anywhere?

What better way to invest your Saturday mornings — and believe me, your chores will wait a few hours.  Thanks Bev and Bob, and Well Done, Virginia!

More photos below…

 

I had the fantasy, for about ten minutes, of buying this barnfresh MG and driving it back to Los Angeles -- what an idiot!

I had the fantasy, for about ten minutes, of buying this barnfresh MG and driving it back to Los Angeles — what an idiot!

 

As mentioned, this great and all original '60 Vette is now owned by the daughter of the first owner -- and as a newborn, she was driven home from the hospital by her dad, in this car -- great cars, great people, and some great stories too

As mentioned, this great and all original ’60 Vette is now owned by the daughter of the first owner — and as a newborn, she was driven home from the hospital by her dad, in this car — great cars, great people, and some great stories too

As with all good Cars & Coffee gatherings, this one had a little something for everyone

As with all good Cars & Coffee gatherings, this one had a little something for everyone

As nice a Ferrari 400 as I've seen anywhere

As nice a Ferrari 400 as I’ve seen anywhere

Naturally this authentic and way cool Meyers Manx appealed to my Southern California beach sensibilities

Naturally this authentic and way cool Meyers Manx appealed to my Southern California beach sensibilities

 

San Marino Motor Classic 2014; now a show not to be missed

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My friend Jerry Rosenstock painted his small-block Shelby Cobra this fabulous navy blue because he liked it...and so do I

My friend Jerry Rosenstock painted his small-block Shelby Cobra this fabulous navy blue because he liked it…and so do I

The San Marino Motor Classic has become more than simply a great “regional” car show in a pretty park setting; it’s a really big deal show that draws magnificent cars.  The primary organizer, Mr. Aaron Weiss, is a supremely knowledgeable car guy who has a fleet of wonderful cars himself, and he and his committee curate and assemble a most memorable show.  And like so many great concours, the show benefits charitiy(ies) in this case several worthy ones, and at the end of the day, a ton of money gets donated.  The organizers assemble a well qualified roster of judges, so also at the end of the (same) day, the right cars take home the hardware.  And the San Marino folks have come up with a brilliant answer to a common question at such events: “hey, when is a post war car going to win best of show?”  San Marino handles its beautifully, by giving both pre and post war bests.

Rather than take you class by class and car by car, I thought you might enjoy these wonderful photos of a truly great day and event, and my thanks to shooter pal Kirk Gerbracht for the damn fine pix.  If you’d like to see the results, and get yourself dialed in for next year, visit the show’s official site at www.sanmarinomotorclassic.com/  And make sure to put next year’s show on your calendar, the date is June 15/15.

Super rare Euro spec 911 -- appropriately nicknamed Kermit, was a crowd favorite among the Porsches

Super rare Euro spec 911 — appropriately nicknamed Kermit, was a crowd favorite among the Porsches

Something here for everyone from heavy classics and antiques to sportscars and hot rods

 

Anyone tired of Silver Birch Aston Martin DB5s yet?  Certainly not me

Anyone tired of Silver Birch Aston Martin DB5s yet? Certainly not me

Alfas?  Yeah, we got yer Alfas right here!

Alfas? Yeah, we got yer Alfas right here!

Plenty of muscle on hand too, like this stunning '70 442

Plenty of muscle on hand too, like this stunning ’70 442

Cute never goes out of style, like this always crowd-popular Citroen 2CV

Cute never goes out of style, like this always crowd-popular Citroen 2CV

 

Some survey or another I read a few years back declared the original 1955-57 Thunderbird America's most beloved classic car, and it's not hard to understand why

Some survey or another I read a few years back declared the original 1955-57 Thunderbird America’s most beloved classic car, and it’s not hard to understand why

 

Always plenty of great Ferraris on show

Always plenty of great Ferraris on show

 

and Jags too!

and Jags too!

 

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Don't forget next year, on June 15/15

Don’t forget next year, on June 15/15

 

 

Friends of Steve McQueen Car Show 2014 a Huge Hit

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This one tugged at my heartstrings just a bit, being my former '62 Ford F-100, now belonging to my friend Vinnie, who toted out his early 60s ex-Ekins/Ekins/Colemn Triumph off-road racing bike to the show

This one tugged at my heartstrings just a bit, being my former ’62 Ford F-100, now belonging to my friend Vinnie, who toted out his early 60s ex-Ekins/Ekins/Colemn Triumph off-road racing bike to the show

OK now this is cool, and very retrofuturistic; a modern 911 winged and painted to honor the seminal '73 Carrera RS 2.7.

OK now this is cool, and very retrofuturistic; a modern 911 winged and painted to honor the seminal ’73 Carrera RS 2.7.

One of McQueen's most famous personal machines at the show was his 1956 Jaguar XK SS, now belonging to the Petersen Automotive Museum.  The guy with the longish hair at the left of the photo is Porsche mega collector/stylist/builder Magnus Walker, aka the Urban Outlaw Porschemeister

One of McQueen’s most famous personal machines at the show was his 1956 Jaguar XK SS, now belonging to the Petersen Automotive Museum. The guy with the longish hair at the left of the photo is Porsche mega collector/stylist/builder Magnus Walker, aka the Urban Outlaw Porschemeister

Another favorite that always drives this crown crazy is the Dunkel Brothers' art deco and Pebble Beach quality GMC tow hauler, packed full of vintage Nashes

Another favorite that always drives this crown crazy is the Dunkel Brothers’ art deco and Pebble Beach quality GMC tow hauler, packed full of vintage Nashes

OK, I'll admit it: I brought my own Mustang too.  That's my blue '08 Shelby GT convertible among a long line of late model Shelbys.

OK, I’ll admit it: I brought my own Mustang too. That’s my blue ’08 Shelby GT convertible among a long line of late model Shelbys.

What would a car show dedicated to the films of Steve McQueen be without Highland Green Metallic Mustangs and black Dodge Chargers - nada!

What would a car show dedicated to the films of Steve McQueen be without Highland Green Metallic Mustangs and black Dodge Chargers – nada!

This fire belching rod usualy empties the rest of the field for a little gas wasting display...but its sure fun to watch

This fire belching rod usualy empties the rest of the field for a little gas wasting display…but its sure fun to watch

These pump engines are fun to watch and listen to, and always please the crowd.  The folks dedicated to their history and restoration are fun an interesting too

These pump engines are fun to watch and listen to, and always please the crowd. The folks dedicated to their history and restoration are fun an interesting too

As mentioned, the Rolls and Ferrari are the real movie piece, courtesy of noted east coast collector Lawrence Auriana who loaned them to the show for this event.  The Max Duner was custom built for the show by the very original Bruce and Winnie Meyers

As mentioned, the Rolls and Ferrari are the real movie piece, courtesy of noted east coast collector Lawrence Auriana who loaned them to the show for this event. The Max Duner was custom built for the show by the very original Bruce and Winnie Meyers

 

 

By now you must know that I have a very deep relationship with and affection for this fabulous show, which honors the memory and bitchiness of Steve McQueen, and benefits the Boys Republic, where he wound up as a wayward teen, cleaned himself up and decided to make a life for himself.  Held every June at the Boys Republic campus in Chino, each year’s show is themed after one of McQueen’s great films, usually those involving car and motorcycle action of some sort.  This year was no different, themed for the original Thomas Crown Affair, which featured several cool cars and some worthy driving action.  The show’s other main reason for being is to raise all important funds for the school, which always has construction and remodeling projects underway.

While this is generally a run what you brung kind of show, there are often many very special, rare, and purely show quality cars on hand, plus a lot of great bikes, and a special display of “hit and miss” industrial pump engines put on by the club that specializes in restoring and maintaining these interesting bit of America’s industrial and agricultural history.

The highlight for me was seeing the actual Ferrari 275 GTB/4 NART Spider driven by Faye Dunaway’s character in The Thomas Crown Affair, plus the fabulous deep blue Rolls-Royce Silver Shadow Coupe piloted by McQueen’s Crown in that film.  Add to that a Bruce Meyers-built replica of the modified Manx Dune buggy from the action driving scene on the beach.  The original buggy, to the best of my knowledge, lives in Hawaii with a very private, very anonymous owner.  I’d have room for that in my garage in a minute.

The whole show has a relaxed, family friendly, somewhat carnival vibe to it, which I like a lot.  It was again my honor to host the Friday night, pre-show dinner / fund-raiser, which is fun because it takes place on the show field, and the boys who live and work at the school cook and serve the dinner.  You can learn more about the school and Steve McQueen’s connections to it at www.boysrepublic.org.

 

 

 

Mullin Automotive Museum Hosts Rare and Fabulous Bugatti Art Exhibit

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Say the name Bugatti and most enthusiasts will think of the great French cars, past and present. But there’s far more to the Bugatti story. Several of patron Ettore’s family members were gifted artists, in a variety of mediums.

Talk about A Vroom With a View...the scene from up high standing on one of the upstairs balconies will leave you a little breathless

Talk about A Vroom With a View…the scene from up high standing on one of the upstairs balconies will leave you a little breathless

Oxnard, California’s Mullin Automotive Museum, itself already dedicated to the history of Art Deco, and largely French automobiles, always has wonderful Bugatti cars on display. But a new exhibit, running from now until the end of the year, highlights the artful capabilities of the Bugatti family with cars, furniture, sculpture, painting, cars of course, and other amazing works of art that you must see.

Talk about a big, bad, Bug; one of the uber rare Bugatti Atlantics; and Ralph Lauren's similar example is black, just in case you were wondering.

Talk about a big, bad, Bug; one of the uber rare Bugatti Atlantics; and Ralph Lauren’s similar example is black, just in case you were wondering.  This is the first one built and was once nearly totalled in an accident with a locomotive.

The museum floor has been temporarily stripped of non-Bugatti automobiles, and augmented by many great works of original Bugatti family art — still including of course many many great cars, plus a superb variety of original Bugatti family art.  No matter, this museum is something every enthusiast, and art lover, must see.

 

There's certainly room in my house for a Bugatti dining room set

There’s certainly room in my office for a Bugatti desk and chair set

 

Sculpture, Bronze, paintings, graphics and illustration -- the Bugatti beauty never stops

Sculpture, Bronze, paintings, graphics and illustration — the Bugatti beauty never stops

Public hours are limited to visit the website to make sure you’re heading there on the right day at the right time.  I promise you won’t regret making the trek; its one of the most artful and elegant places you’ll ever visit.

Get the scoop at www.mullinautomotivemuseum.com

Fabulous unrestored Bugs from a most famous museum in France

Fabulous unrestored Bugs from a most famous museum in France

 

Highway Earth — Great Car show coming June 29, 2014

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I want to clue you in on a what I’m positive will be a great new car show that you’ll want to attend either as an entrant or spectator. It’s called Highway Earth, and it’s a show by and for real enthusiasts of any sort or stripe. You’ll see some fabulous high dollar cars there, but that’s absolutely not a requirement. You’ll also see rat rods, low riders, customs, bikes, sports and muscle, old trucks, you name it.

Andy Griffith Show filming underway at Franklin Lake Park...way back in the day.

Andy Griffith Show filming underway at Franklin Canyon Lake Park…way back in the day.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Bring your family and spend the day, because the location is fabulous, that being historic Franklin Canyon Lake Park in Beverly Hills; the filming site for many great movies and TV shows over the years. There’s no ticket cost, and no judging, trophies or other BS either. Catering provided by an accessable combination of food trucks, ice cream carts, and other non snooty, not pricey food vendors.

Muscle, exotic, sports, trucks, rods, low riders...it'll all be on show at Highway Earth

Muscle, exotic, sports, trucks, rods, low riders…it’ll all be on show at Highway Earth

The field is filling fast, there’s only room on the show field area for about 120 show cars (plus parking), but entries are still needed and welcome, and the entry cost is piddly.  I’ll be there with a car and hope you will be too, should be a great day.  Sign up and get the rest of the details at www.highwayearth.com.

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Two Great Car Shows Coming Soon — The Friends of Steve McQueen Car Show and the San Marino Motoring Classic

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Two of my favorite SoCal car show weekends are nearly upon us; The Friends of Steve McQueen Car & Motorcycle Show, this year honoring that classic McQueen flick, The Thomas Crown Affair, takes place June 6/7 at the Boys Republic School in Chino California. You’ll be amazed at the variety and quality of cars and bikes that turn out to have fun and raise money for this most worth institution: Porsches, Ferraris, Mustangs, old trucks, hot bikes, racecars and several vehicles previously owned, ridden or raced by the Very King of Cool himself. Entries still being accepted, learn more at www.stevemcqueencarshow.com.

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And just a day later, stay in SoCal and take in the San Marino Motor Classic; a more traditional concours d’elegance that rivals some of the biggest and best.  The place is Lacy Park in San Marino, California, and this show also benefits some wonderful charities.  Spectacular location and some world class cars, and I ain’t ‘tellin no lie here.  The date is Sunday, June 8; tickets available at the door. Get the rest of scoop at www.sanmarinomotorclassic.com.

And scroll way down this blog and you’ll find photos from last year’s editions of both of these great events.  Thanks for your support.  Attend either and I promise you won’t be disappointed.

I’m Finally Floored!

Matts column - new floor

Nearly every garage I’ve owned has had a lousy, or at best, very average floor. I once bought a new house that had clean, pristine, uncracked concrete, and I covered it with a giant piece of tight loop commercial carpeting that a contractor friend of mine pulled out of an office building remodel job he was doing. The carpet wasn’t awful, but was difficult to keep clean, absorbed moisture too easily, and stained whenever I spilled a little during an oil change. And the garage floor in my current, built-in-1954 single fam res, was as you’d expect: cracked, and deep stained from the leaking wagons and compacts of long ago previous owners. I kept this battered cement clean, but it was sure ugly in comparison with the rest of the space, which isn’t fancy but nice, with large built-in bookcases, insulation, plenty of doored storage, good lighting, drywall, lots of electrical outlets and decent tool boxes and workbench.
Something had to be done.
Yet I struggled over what would be the best solution. We’ve all lusted over the immaculate polished and cleared concrete we’ve seen in race shops and top notch carbarns. Or the tile, and even marble, used to floor the garages of the best custom built homes. All great – and all far beyond my need and budget. I seriously considered the shiny gray epoxy coating rolled onto many garage floors; often with some texture or little colored flecks of material intended to give the surface some grip. I’ve known many people who’ve rolled this stuff onto their floors, and everyone seemed to love it the day it went down, but weren’t as happy with it over time. One told me “it’s as slick as ice when it’s wet” and another warned me that car tires can tear it up and that it’ll ultimately lift off the cement. I wanted to do this job once, and only.
While recently working a television gig at a major collector car auction, I found the solution, literally and figuratively, right at my feet. Several vendor booths, including our studio stage, were neatly covered in square composite tiles engineered and made by Swisstrax. As our set was sponsored by Craftsman Tools, the tiles were in their corporate red and black motif. A couple of guys from Swisstrax came over to look at the stage and check out how their product was performing for us. The answer was “perfectly” so I asked the guys for a lesson in this stuff. The tiles are about 15-inches square, and snap together much like Legos. If you need to cut or trim it, you do so with a fine tooth hacksaw blade in a jigsaw. Lots of colors available, and they can be mixed and matched in most any fashion. The stuff can handle just about any liquid, and up to 240 degrees temp. It can be recycled, and contains a certain amount of recycled content. If I move, I can take the floor apart and take it with me. Mop it with warm water and a little Simple Green to clean. Plus the price made sense. I said “sign me up.”
I whipped out my VISA card and a few weeks later, several boxes of Swisstrax appeared on my door, along with complete instructions, nice finisher panels for the edges, and such. I elected to go with all black, as the Ribtrax material already has a checkered flag pattern to it and I didn’t want to make the floor vibrate visually, or look overdone. Floor prep was limited to emptying out the entire garage, and a good scrubbing with dish soap, grease remover and hot water.
This all may sound like a big plug for Swisstrax, and it is in a sense, because I’m thrilled with the result; please be assured that they didn’t give me this stuff for free just to say nice things about it. If I had a basement, poolroom or other mancave, I’d also Swisstrax it. I’m thinking you may like it too; learn more at www. Swisstrax.com. I’m not saying this is the only solution to this problem, but for goodness sakes: do something with that cruddy garage floor.

Fabulous Fords Forever 2014 — Has it been nearly 30 years since the birth of “Fab Fords?”

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Photos by Kirk Gerbracht

Yes it has, and we’ve no reason to suspect this event will ever cease to be the world’s greatest one day gathering of Ford, Lincoln, Mercury and Ford-powered cars, trucks and racing machines. Ford Motor Company and the Ford Car Club Council did it again on Sunday, April 27, 2014, putting together another fab Fab Fords show filling the massive parking lots of Knott’s Berry Farm in Buena Park, California. And the photos only do the event partial justice because no matter where you stand, you’re overwhelmed by Ford Blue Ovalness.

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Naturally the event further celebrated the Mustang’s 50th Anniversary, and continued the rollout of the new 2015 Mustang. But one of the gathering’s greatest appeals are all the other great Ford or Ford related cars that you see here that you may otherwise not see so often: Sunbeam Tigers, Mercury Cougar Eliminators, (5.0-liter Mustang powered) Ford LTD LXs, tricked out Econoline vans, every iteration of Shelby Mustang and Cobra you can imagine, Pintos, Mavericks, Edsels, every year and and configuration of Model T and Model A you could imagine, and yes…Mustang IIs.
Autograph hounds had plenty of heroes to visit with too.

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On hand, signing their hearts out, posing for selfies and accessible to all were many Ford Racing greats, including Steve Saleen, George Follmer, Parnelli Jones and, pictured above, one of the world’s most successful road-racing champs, Scott Pruett.

"Girls Just Wanna Have Fun!"  Cleo Shelby, and the incomparable Linda Vaughn, sign autographs, swap stories, and shake hands or the Hurst Racing Angels charity project

“Girls Just Wanna Have Fun!” Cleo Shelby, and the incomparable Linda Vaughn, sign autographs, swap stories, and shake hands or the Hurst Racing Angels charity project

Plus everyone’s favorite motorsports ambassadress Miss Hurst Golden Shifter Linda Vaughn, and her gal pal Cleo (Mrs. Carroll) Shelby. Accessibility really describes Fab Fords too, because the event is easy to get to, there’s tons of parking, and no admission charge. And as always, many of the Ford car clubs had information booths, and so many other vendors had booths and trailers full of T-shirts, die-cast models, performance and restoration parts, literature, and countless other goodies to spend your money on.
How many cars made up the Fab Fords field?

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It’s hard to say for sure or get an accurate count because it’s all so massive, but the early plan was 1800 vehicles on display, and we’ve heard that the actual total was nearer 2000.
What are Ford and the car club council going to do next year to mark three decades? They haven’t said yet, but it’s likely to be the largest and best Fab Fords yet. And we’ll be there to see it, and so should you. Stay tuned at www.fabulousfordsforever.com.

Please don’t leave, many more great photos just below…

My fave Bronco; a first gen 2-door "wagon" as built up by racing legend Bill Stroppe -- highly collectible now and deservedly so

My fave Bronco; a first gen 2-door “wagon” as built up by racing legend Bill Stroppe — highly collectible now and deservedly so

 

What's a Ford show without Cobras, and Fab Fords had lots of 'em of all model and stripe

What’s a Ford show without Cobras, and Fab Fords had lots of ‘em of all model and stripe

 

This was the only Sunbeam Tiger I saw at the show...diappointing as there are many around and people love seeing them

This was the only Sunbeam Tiger I saw at the show…diappointing as there are many around and people love seeing them

 

Shelby American brought out its trailer, a bunch of engines, cars, and people to support Fab Fords and meet with rabid Shelby fans

Shelby American brought out its trailer, a bunch of engines, cars, and people to support Fab Fords and meet with rabid Shelby fans

 

Few Cobras draw more attention than this "barn fresh" dual quad 428.  Its battleworn but very original with "patina" to excess but people loved it

Few Cobras draw more attention than this “barn fresh” dual quad 428. Its battleworn but very original with “patina” to excess but people loved it

 

Something for everyone here, even if the Countach doors ain't for me personally

Something for everyone here, even if the Countach doors ain’t for me personally

 

Here's a Bronco bodystyle you won't see often; the rare Roadster, with no top and no doors.  Didn't sell well, hardly practical or safe, and only lasted a couple years in the model roster

Here’s a Bronco bodystyle you won’t see often; the rare Roadster, with no top and no doors. Didn’t sell well, hardly practical or safe, and only lasted a couple years in the model roster