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Hagerty Employee

Is attention to detail the car enthusiasts curse?

It’s impossible to count the number of times I have overheard someone compliment how well a door closes on a car. It’s something that’s mundane to most people and has no bearing on how well a car does its job as a mode of transportation, yet enthusiasts collectively nerd out over minute details like this. To me, that might be one of the best things about our community. It is also the downfall of my personal sanity.

 

Read the full article on Hagerty.com:

https://www.hagerty.com/media/maintenance-and-tech/is-attention-to-detail-the-car-enthusiasts-curse/

61 REPLIES 61
Pit Crew

He can't be too OCD - didn't even make an effort to try to take good pictures of his truck outside, shooting into the sun and with shadows on the other side.  On the other hand, maybe he's making it look like a Craig's List or FB Marketplace ad.

New Driver

Got 'cha Kyle. Mine is a 1999 Dodge Ram 1500 with 150,000 miles on it. Can relate 100%!

Intermediate Driver

I really like your truck, Kyle...and I like what you are doing.  Vehicles from the '80's & '90's are very cool.  They are still fairly analog compared to today's high tech stuff, while being dependable and fun to drive.  When I find a car or bike that I like, I tend to keep it for many years.  As with Kyle, all of the details on my vehicles must be attended to over time. 

 

I currently own cars from the late '80's thru early 21st Century.  The rubber and plastic parts on these cars are starting to get old, so whenever I'm servicing or repairing them, I replace all of the rubber and plastic parts that are still available.

 

The one downfall of the obsessive attention to detail is when the home mechanic gets too deep into a project to get out.  One of my best wrenching friends suffers from this.  He is a much better mechanic than me.  He is an excellent engine rebuilder.  But when he buys a car, he may tear it completely apart and never get around to putting it back together.  The little details needing attention will bother him so much, that he feels a need to address it all at once.

 

I attack a restoration in stages.  I will rebuild the front end before rebuilding the rear.  I take one section apart, restore, reassemble and move on to a new section.  A restoration might take two years or more.  I don't attempt to attack all of the work needing to be done at once.  Kyle appears to do the same thing.  He seems to obsess over one area at a time.

Intermediate Driver

I'm with you!! Rebuilding the front seats on an old car or truck is a must.
Moderator

It’s true that I focus on one area at a time. Otherwise I get to scattered and nothing really gets done!
Intermediate Driver

I agree with your premise and admit to being a compulsive fixer of every flaw I have ever found on my vintage cars, but how do you explain the "trend" toward patina?  Isn't just an acceptance of the vagaries of time on your vintage vehicle?  Is it driven by the desire to present the vehicle as an historical piece, or is it just an expression of laziness?  We do have dodos replicating patina with a spray gun, which might negate the laziness argument, but it still feels like an excuse to do nothing.   

Moderator

Color me interested... What do you drive?
New Driver

You and I would have had a few fun afternoons in the driveway with my 99 F150 XL Reg cab!

Intermediate Driver

With old cars and especially Fords of the T & A era we keep hearing how 'stuff' HAS to be in order to be absolutely original authentic ... I have sad news, I doubt there was a T or an A made that was the absolute same and if so was by sheer accident.  Some of this nonsense has gone way to far.  I drive and use my cars & trucks, bad roads or good, reliability is what I go for, the number of tacks holding upholstery means zero.

Pit Crew

Most rebuildable vehicles are worth rebuilding.
I had a cousin with an 80’s GMC pickup. He was a well traveled musician and majored in business in college. He put several hundred thousands of miles on that truck. Maintenance was handled religiously. After about 10 years, he crunched the numbers and concluded it made more sense to restore the truck back to new rather than buy a new one. He had me r&r the engine and trans to be rebuilt with a few upgrades for reliability and efficiency. He had the truck repainted. He restored the interior to look like new. Basically he had a “new” 10yo truck. He was very happy with it and continued to pile on the miles. If he hadn’t passed away in a crash (from lack of sleep), I’m sure he would still be driving the same truck.