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Sajeev
Community Manager

Community Question: What was your automotive bright spot for 2020?

@Skodalicious made a great post about how his 2020 wasn't that bad, which begs the question: what was your automotive bright spot for this year? 

 

Mine?  Most definitely my Valentino project finally, after 20 years, going into the paint booth...much to my bank account's dismay: https://www.hagerty.com/media/maintenance-and-tech/project-valentino-the-restomod-that-actually-adde... 

46 REPLIES 46
hyperv6
Instructor

Getting my buddies low mile Fiero GT back running after sitting several decades. 

We replaced the brake system less master cylinder and the fuel system from tank to injectors. It fired right up and drives like the 35,000 miles shown on the odometer. 

He and I are original 1985 owners. We met in 1985 lost contact and found each other a few years ago. I was shocked he lived only 3 miles from me. 

I never saw the car as it left the road in the 90’s. 

Next we will start on his wife’s car. A 69 Firebird 400. It should not need a lot to get it going. I really want to see her take it for a spin rowing the gears.

 

I know the look on my buddies face was worth a million on that first drive. So much time lost but again found. 

NITRO450EXP
Instructor

I had 2 this year, the 283 Tri power swap in the C10.

 

And finally getting the wheel chocks, L - Track recess mounted and floor enamel down in the car hauler after 6 years of procrastination (well 3, I was actually out of the country for 3 )

 

Very happy.

 

The 283 needs redone but no biggie, got a years use out of it.

 

Nitro

 

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Ragster
Intermediate Driver

I would think 2020 we did much more cruising instead of sitting at some car show for 6 hours , getting a grab bag and watching some guy get a trophy ! Much more interesting doing a 2 hour Cars & Coffee and then GO cruising for 2 hrs or more. I put on 6000 KM this year just cruising with friends and never left Ontario. Hope to do that and more in 2021. 

Bigcam
New Driver

Yes!!! Most definitely. Us seniors got tired of sitting at home, (all the car shows in our state where canceled) so we did impromptu cruises. One would take his ride to the DQ drive up and park in the front row enjoying his ice cream. One by one others would show up until the parking lot was full. Then cruise the street like we where in high school again. 

MoparMan
Detailer

Finally completed a total front end rebuild/power front disc brake conversion on my '70 Charger; due to a few minor setbacks, it took longer than anticipated.  I also upgraded to OEM look alloy 15" wheels; everyone thinks that it looks GREAT! First drive last week, and the brakes worked flawlessly!   🙂

Bob143
New Driver

After waiting for years for Zora’s long awaited mid engine Corvette plus waiting to get it after ordering it close to two years ago I was finally able to take delivery of mine this month.

Sabrejet
Pit Crew

I agree.  That was going to be my reply.  I had to buy it on Ebay but it was still new.  Fantastic car.  After driving hundreds of cars over 66 years I have never enjoyed a car more.   Sits in my hangar next to my Demon. 

mustang1_man
New Driver

  

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While my wife and I were sequestered for covid this summer, I ran across this Legend Lime 2006 GT with the saddle interior.  The previous one owner car had all records since birth!  We went to Kissimmee Fl and brought it back to our place in Daytona Beach where I was able to play with and upgrade the car!  What else did I have to do!

OLDERbastard1
Intermediate Driver

I actually began (& finished) a total re-do of my shop. Probably been twenty-five yrs + (for a COMPLETE re-do). In the process, I brought out (& fondled.....lol) some of my oldest bikes I haven't seen in that time! Doing inventory of engines, frames, gasket kits etc. has renewed my enthusiasm! I am now in the planning stages of which project will be the 1st. 2021 WILL be an awesome year!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

jonZ
Instructor

2021's Gotta be an awesome year compared to 2020. I am almost through with the 260 V8 for my 64 Falcon Futura. Runnin a 289 now but the original motor is almost complete and ready to be installed.

dhomuth
Intermediate Driver

After it had not run for perhaps 35 years and a 5+ year restoration project, my long-lost 1966 Corvair Corsa convertible got its engine installed, and I got to drive it for a short distance before going back to the work of finishing it.  At the moment, it is getting its new convertible top installed.  When it's done in the next few months, it will be a stunner.

73SM
New Driver

In June I received an invite to join a group (who I didn't know) for a cruise through the mountains of northern New Mexico. I drove my 1973 Citroen SM to Santa Fe to join up and was surprised to see about a dozen Porsches, a Ferrari, 2 Lotus,  a Corvette C7 Z06, a Challenger, and a couple of other high-performance cars. The Citroen was the oldest car there; several drivers told me I was being pretty brave.  Anyway, I was determined not to be the guy that slowed everyone else down. We drove north from Santa Fe & hit the back roads (speed limits were optional). I really put the Maserati engine to the test and drove the car hard along the narrow, twisting road. Proud to say I not only kept up, I actually lost one of the Porsches (the driver said he couldn't catch up to me). The car ran flawlessly and I think the other guys & gals were impressed that it did so well. We ended up at one of the driver's private collection: Mercedes Gullwing, Lancia Zagato, 2 Aston Martins, '62 Lincoln Continental Convertible, Porsche, and more. Great day of driving and camaraderie.

SilentBoy741
Detailer

When my restoration guy, who's had my '56 Oldsmobile for over 10 years (and a couple kids' college funds) finally called and said, "We're down to just this little box of chrome trim left to do".

Geno
Pit Crew

Went to several car shows locally and the last one we went to I won a raffle for a complete car wrap.  Took the 08 C6 in and gave her a facelift.  Looks pretty cool, IMO, and the original paint is still there if I get tired of it, or catch to much grief from the purists.  Added the LED headlights and they are awesome.  Looking forward to more shows next year.08 Vette rt.jpg20201219_154025 (2).jpg 

Sajeev
Community Manager

Oh wow, you definitely did well this year with that vinyl wrap! 

Idaholifestyle
New Driver

I recently retired from the automotive service industry and being a gear head my entire life starting  from the  muscle car era I felt very fortunate to have a friend ask me to get his old truck running. A 1939 Ford COE flat bed truck his grandfather had purchased new. It had not run since 1970 and shows 39,000 miles on the odometer. It had been in storage in the basement of his family's fruit packing shed for the last 50 years. The Ford 239 cu in flathead was seized tight from accumulated internal rust. What a great lesson in the advance of technology! I have the engine rebuilt, it only require .020 over pistens and the rod journals machined .010 under. Upgraded it to adjustable valves. I am now in the process of repairing the 1st year for ford hydraulic brake system. Hope to have it running soon. This truck is truly a great barn find. The black paint still waxes out beautifully and the card board door panels still have a sheen. A great covid project!

dough
Intermediate Driver

I got lucky and found my future resto-mod project.  Back in Sept I ran across this uber-clean 1977 Pontiac Firebird and just had to check it out.  It is a completely original, 39000 mile, mint condition V6/PS/PDB/Cold AC car finished in Mandarin Orange.  It runs and drives perfect, and the interior is quite literally in showroom new condition.  Talk about the perfect "Rockford Files" tribute!  I've already located a complete set of 15" Rally II wheels, ordered a replica California blue plate "ROCKFORD" license plate, and will have plenty of miles to log as I plan out the updates to make this the low-slung, fuel-injected, superior-handling "J-turn Special" it was destined to be.  Could not have found a better basis from which to start.  CarA.jpgCarC.jpg

Sajeev
Community Manager

Wow, that is a perfect restomod just waiting to happen! 

Guitar74
Technician

I love it. What power plant are you going for? Please tell me it will still be Poncho powered.

Guitar74
Technician

For me it was finding a good set of vent windows for my Cougar at a reasonable price. I had a non locking driver's  side that had been killing me (the post was gone otherwise I would have put a new lock handle on it). I managed to score both sides for less than $100. So between my ebay score of new tail light slats for $42 (a clean up with paint thinner then a respray of the black sections and they are perfect), I pretty much have the nit picky cosmetic details done with the exception of my rear bumper (you Mustang guys don't know how good you have it. What is basically the same bumper minus the rolled in center section for the license plate is triple the cost). Oh well, maybe another late night scouring of ebay will net me another deal.

DUB6
Instructor

One of my favorite pastimes is to scour eBay and some other sites, just looking at parts - most of which I don't really need, but sometimes you do run across a jewel.  I've managed to upgrade a few things on my cars (replacing things that were "fair" with things that are "good" or "very good"), and it always feels like a big win.  But truly, just browsing is a very entertaining part of the process.  Not as much fun as the old days, when wandering through a junkyard was an almost "every weekend" activity, but doing it on the computer with a cup of coffee and sitting in my easy chair is certainly a lot easier and cleaner!  😋

 

Good luck with the bumper search...

Danny
New Driver

After 53 years in the autobody business I finally retired

 

Sajeev
Community Manager

Congrats!  That's cause for celebration! 

Historian
Detailer

After going through Covid last December, January and February, I was anxious to get back to work on my C4 Corvette project.  Even though my Crossfire fuel injection worked fine, I began a mechanical transformation on the C4.  I stripped all the Crossfire stuff off, and proceeded to degrease everything.  I discovered that my number-matching engine had been rebuilt in the past, and was a 383.  I always strongly suspected that it wasn't a vanilla 350, but never had the proof.  I installed an Edelbrock performer intake, and a Edelbrock 1405 carb.  I replaced the thermostat with a 160 degree one, and replaced the water pump with a high volume one.  I also replaced the 90A alternator with a 228A single-wire one.  I did a remote battery conversion, and added a remote kill-switch and kill-switch replay (along with what felt like miles of heavy gauge copper cable).  I replace the factory radiator with a new aluminum 3-row one. I also added a set of new wrapped headers, and a new dual exhaust with x-pipe.  I did a Monster Transmission manual overdrive conversion.  I also replaced the factory distributor with a Accel racing HEI distributor and a set of heavy Moroso spark plug wires.  I also replaced the well-worn starter with a heavy duty gear-reduction one.  There were a hundred other lesser jobs that got done, but also many that remain unfinished.  Still, not bad for an old man recovering from Covid.  Now, I anxiously await Spring so I can get back to wrenching!

RW68RSConv
Intermediate Driver

I own a Cal Ace - which is a 1962 AC Ace “tribute” car built on an MG chassis made in the early 80’s. I know of about 15 cars today.  This year I was able to obtain the original molds for this car, giving me an endless supply of spare body parts! It was a 6 yr journey to gets these and super stoked I have them. 

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Billygoat33
Pit Crew

My high point for 2020.

Late August Haggerty ran a storey about 5 cars with no reserve auctions on Ebay.   One of them was an '85 Mercedes Benz 560sl, this was one week after regretfully passing on a 380sl locally.  I won the aution (how do you win something you buy?) on Saturday, picked up the cash from my bank on Monday and flew to Oakland on Tuesday morning, the seller was kind enough to pick me up at the airport.   The car looked better than the photos and seemed to have no problems.  He even threw in an extra set of oem alloy wheels.  I was on my way back to Seattle area by 11:30 am.   

My biggest problems were due to Covid, no place to eat, no restrooms...well Safeway stores saved the day, lunch in the deli and the store restrooms.   Driving through the mountain passes in the Syskious was an absolute blast - some  say the sl's aren't sports cars, but if you want to go fast on curving mountain roads all day long, they can't be beat.  I knocked off about 5 after covering 430 miles.   Then next day I was home  by early afternoon - total mileage 850 miles.   The fact that my wife wasn't there to bug me to slow down made the trip even more fun and less stressful.   Total birght spot in 2020.

Guitar74
Technician

The Sl is a great driver's car in my opinion. I am glad that she netted you with a great and trouble free drive home. With the exeption of my Cougar, I have driven every other car from Illinois to Georgia trouble free. There is no better way to enjoy a classic than to get in them and drive them.

jonZ
Instructor

Don't know about the SI, but your spot on about enjoying the car. Trailers are made for a last resort. 

sharkguy48
Intermediate Driver

When I drove my roadster with my wife as passenger, there was always a shrill sound in the cockpit.  When I drove alone, the shrill sound stopped.  I wonder why?

Guitar74
Technician

When the guys at work ask if I ever ring out my motorcycle I tell them,"Until I feel my speed limiter hit me in the back of the head."

Guitar74
Technician

Never mind.....I lost my train of thought.

Tinkerah
Instructor

Drive at Dawn springs to mind. And I've got my hat!Where the hell is everybody? And who's burning leaves at this hour??Where the hell is everybody? And who's burning leaves at this hour??

jonZ
Instructor

Is that coffee or a bloody marry in that cup?

sharkguy48
Intermediate Driver

The driver, and not necessarily the car, can be a decisive factor in the performance of a car.  I bet Mario Andretti in a Corolla could out-drive many owners of so-called performance cars.

Guitar74
Technician

This is exactly the reason I ate a newer 5.0 mustang for lunch in my Cougar.

Rob1
Instructor

2020 blew in a ton of ways but for us we had a lot of freed up time no family commitment's/get togethers/entertaining etc etc and for the first time in a very long time put over 5K miles on the Vette loads of turn and burn day trips lunch/beverages packed just cruzin and sight seeing,me and the misses had a great time it was like early days with little pressing to do over the past winter the Vette had a three month massage and was up for the tours with no issues and is in my shop on stands getting this winters full attention.Cheers RCorvette 2013 008.jpgmy addictionmy addiction 

jonZ
Instructor

Fine ride Rob1, Good to hear you put some miles on her. (the car) I can hardly get my gal to ride with me since she has her own now.  We're down to just two now. Sortta like a his and hers kinda thing. Not vettes by any stretch but fun cars none the less. Hers, 63 Falcon Futura convertible, Mine 64 Falcon Futura  two door hardtop. There are some pics of them floating around on this site somewhere. The gulf coast storms of 2020 kicked our butts and lost all our electronics. Still trying to recover. Happy new Year.

Rob1
Instructor

Falcon was my introduction to fast cars,my uncle(mothers brother) was a crazy guy my Dad always said irresponsible he was into the street racing scene and ordered a 64 or 65 cant remember for sure but it was a 2dr HT with a 289/271hp V8 4sp that when it came into the dealership was sent down the street to a performance shop and Dad said he spent like half again as much having it hot rodded even more.When i was a kid he would come to visit and take me for a boot man that car was fast and he could go thru the gears like nobody's business it left a impression on me.Many years  later i bought a 88 Fox body and spent my money on go fast goodies and my uncle yet in his twilight years wanted me to take him for a boot he said it was the closest thing to riding his old Falcon high revving gear smasher.LOL Cheers Rob

jonZ
Instructor

Thanks for the reply Rob1, Falcons are in my blood/heritage. I've always loved them in any form or fashion. My 64 was originally a 260 ci ( I have the motor built and on the stand) but for now runnin a 289. Light cam, headers and other bolt on speed mods. Plenty fast enough for me at this stage (66 yrs old). My wife has the 63 convert. I would say approx 90% original and unrestored. It was a California car, transplanted to Texas and now resides in southern Alabama. I am desperate to restore it but she says Nay-Nay. She did let me rebuild the carb but other than that she won't let me touch it. Thanks again for the reply and have a Happy new year.

DUB6
Instructor

Some years back, I bought a Model A and said it was going to be my "Retirement Project".  I'd been retired for 8 years, so when 2020 hit, I decided it was well past time to start on it.  I think I'm going to be 2 to 3 years before I complete it, but it at least makes my shop area look less empty 😋

 

The car and me from our backsidesThe car and me from our backsidesHere we are from the front angleHere we are from the front angle

I think it'll be awhile before I need to add this one to my Hagerty policy...

Sajeev
Community Manager

I love it! This is a great project and I wish you the best of luck! 

gerald102413
Detailer

Despite of the pandemic, for me, It was a blessing is disguise in terms of concentrating on repairing my 1997 coupe Cadillac Eldorado with new struts/shocks for the front/rear with a mechanic friend of mine, replacing driver side door panel, new magnaflow catalytic converter and upholstery interior work. Basically, we put the time to do something positive rather than thinking about the pandemic in 2020. 

TheFlash300
Pit Crew

Two big bright spots for me. My 2yo daughter had her first ride with me in my Spitfire and her reactions were "More" and "Faster".

The second was driving a personal best lap at Grattan Raceway, 8 seconds better than the year before. https://youtu.be/AFV2w9cwE-s

gerald102413
Detailer

Bright spot for 2020: Adding front struts and rear shocks from a mechanic buddy of mines for my Eldorado. Its a long time coming. 

SamAdamsPaleAle
Detailer

I think hitching a ride in my friends dad's Ferrari certainly did it. Or taking selfies in a P1 McLaren. Or getting interviewed by Hagerty. They were all great. 

Sajeev
Community Manager

Interviewing you for Hagerty was one of my 2020 Highlights too!