Advertiser Update: Graffiti Alley

Graffiti Alley has been serving Eugene and beyond since July 1991 with parts for classic cars, trucks and hot rods. This is the source for “the hands-on gearhead” and it’s located In Eugene, Oregon. Bob has been involved in the automotive world his whole life in drag racing as well as parts supplying.
You’ll find what you need for that special project in your garage, often in stock and ready for you to pick up or Bob can ship it to you. Sheetmetal, window felts, weather-stripping, dynamat, collectable memorabilia and the like. Bob can also appraise your Hot Rod, Resto-mod, Antique car or truck.

Graffiti Alley has the largest Ford Mustang parts inventory in Lane County, on the shelf and ready for you. Give them a call @ 541-689-7334 and please tell them you heard about Graffiti Alley in Roddin’ & Racin’ NorthWest. Or, stop by at 675 River Rd., Eugene, OR.

Advertiser Update: Finishline Coatings

Ceramic coatings were originally designed and created by the Aerospace industry for use by NASA. They are a thermal coating, corrosion resistant, they control heat, help dissipate heat and more.

Finishline Coatings is the industry leader in ceramic coatings for automotive and industrial uses. They can help reduce underhood heat, increase the lifetime of your exhaust system, and help scavenge exhaust gases making your exhaust run cooler, restore your aluminum components to their factory finish by burnishing them. They offer internal engine component coatings that help control heat, create a thermal barrier, molybnium coatings that reduce friction and wear, and oil shedding coatings.

Cerma-chrome is offer in many colors including black, titanium, gun metal gray, raw steel, cast iron, gold and others, upon request.

For additional information please visit their website www.finishlinecoationgs.com or call 503-659-4278. We are located East off McLoughlin Blvd. at 2889 S. E. Silver Springs Road. Milwaukie, OR. 97222.

La Grande Car Show

In July, some friends of mine made a second trip to La Grande, Oregon to participate in the Grande Ronde-A-View Car Show. This time one couple, Jim & Sylvia took their ’39 Ford Sedan and the other couple, Wes & Becki, took their ’40 Chevy Sedan. The Cruise is put on by the Timber Cruisers Car Club. (www.timbercruiserscarclub.com) As I mentioned, this was their second time to go to this cruise. This must speak to the fun this show offers, it’s around 200 miles from Beavercreek.

They stayed in the renovated, “The Landing Hotel” a mixture of rustic and modern decor in downtown La Grande. They all liked sitting on the second-floor veranda right above their cars displayed below on the main drag. Jim told me that there were a couple hundred cars with some from far reaching places, Lake Havasu, Arizona for instance, some from Canada, of course Oregon, Washington, Idaho and other places I can’t remember.

This is a three-day show, Friday, Saturday, and Sunday. Sponsored by local businesses and it’s held right on the main drag through town and at Riverside Park. In addition, there is a Poker Run and a Country side cruise up into the local mountains. The local businesses/sponsors include Les Schwab Tires, Baxter Auto Parts, Market Place, M. J. Goss Motors Co. and La Grande Gold & Silver.

Next years show is scheduled for July 19th thru the 21st. Maybe it should be on your list.

Sadly, this was Wes Warner’s last car show. He passed away after a stroke on August 4th. He will be missed.

MECUM Auction comes to Portland again in 2018

The collector car hobby is alive and well all cross the America. The “Collector Car Auction” has become a regular on cable TV channels like NBC Sports, The Discovery Channel, Velocity and so on. These events are exciting and fun with lots of glitz and glamour, bright lights, shiny cars, auctioneers, calling out for bids in a cadence that’s hard for the average guy to duplicate and that cadence only adds to excitement and implants a sense of urgency.

Mecum came to Portland again in June 2018. They travel all across the continent producing their collector car auctions in, I think, 18 locations, it’s a traveling show and what a show it is. I heard these auctions described as the biggest and best car show you can attend, and everything is for sale!

Mark Young with the Northwest House of Hardtops @ 11834 SE Stark, in Portland, OR., 503-257-9050, brought much of his inventory to the auction and a lot found new homes. His inventory is usually just spectacular. Rare muscle cars, fantastic restorations, beautiful and well-kept Corvettes of all years. Each offering a treasure to any car guy or car gal.

Mecum offered more than 600 lots this year and nearly 300 sold for about a 50% sell through. Total sales reached 8.3 million. I found many cars that I would love to call mine but alas, my budget just can’t handle what my mind thinks I might need.

For access to complete auction results, or for a schedule of Mecum’s upcoming events, you can sign up for the free InfoNet service at www.Mecum.com. Check out some pictures of cars that were offered and put Mecum Portland on your calendar for next June.

If you’re selling, consign early. They will post your car on the site so people shopping can see your car. If you’re looking to buy, check their website for a look at what’s going to be available. Obviously, next years auction won’t be shown yet but don’t forget to check back often to stay up to speed on what’s coming.

Collector car auctions are a great place to locate the car of your dreams and you can buy it there and take it home.

Petersen Collector Car’s Roseburg Auction

Roseburg in July is a great place to be for people who like hot rods, old cars. street rods etc. “Graffiti Weekend” as its called, offers car shows, cruise-ins, circle track racing, collector car auctions and more. There is something for everyone and it’s not actually just the weekend. This year it started on July 4 and lasted into the weekend. Some may say that the 4th stretches the events out to make it a long weekend and I can see that. Suffice to say, there is something going on every day that’s bound to appeal to many.

The Petersen Collector Car Auction at the Douglas County Fair Grounds is the one I like the best. This year’s auction offered a great array of interesting cars for sale. Not all of them old cars necessarily but many were, both stock and modified. The inventory represented a very diverse selection of rigs ranging from the 1920’s to a late model 2013 hi-rise Dodge Diesel 4 X 4, as well as Corvettes, Jags, BMW’s, and motorcycles. The responsive viewing audience of 400 plus with nearly 300 registered bidders purchased 45% of the 80 vehicles that were consigned. Curt and Susan wanted to say, “Thank you to everyone that participated in the Roseburg Graffiti Weekend Auction.”

This company is an Oregon family owned and operated business that holds three auction a year, in a couple different locations. Every sale typically has a great selection of cars to choose from and this year didn’t disappoint. I’ve bought and sold cars at these auctions and have always gone home happy. Curt and Susan Davis put together a wide variety of cars and trucks to sell and they enlist their family and friends to make these one-day events fun and enjoyable. Please follow them on Facebook and watch the website www.petersencollectorcars.com for the next auction coming in the fall.

Memorabilia sells first in the “warmup auction,” which includes beautiful and well built “man cave items” like custom phone booths, service station type yard lights, combination air & water stands and petroleum signs, provided by Pedersens Petro Retro of Roseburg, Oregon. They will be happy to “custom build” to your color scheme and product designs to fit your personal needs. Call Brent @ 541-868-5222.

Seventeen-Year-Old Wins 58th Annual Rose Cup Race

PORTLAND, Ore. (July 19, 2018) — The Rose Cup Races concluded its 58th year running this past weekend at Portland International Raceway (PIR). The Pacific Northwest’s premier amateur road racing event featured racing competitors from both the Oregon Region Sports Car Club of America and the Cascade Sports Car Club, competing in four amateur race groups: Spec Racer Ford, Great American Stock Car Series, Spec Miata, and a Vintage race group.

This year’s event also highlighted the return of professional sports car racing to PIR for the first time since 2009. The Pirelli World Challenge, considered North America’s top GT production-based road racing sports car series, brought more than 20 different manufacturers and 40 separate models to the Rose Cup Races, with four race groups and seven classes. The weekend marked the first time Pirelli World Challenge has raced in Portland since 2005.

The official winner of Sunday’s 58th Rose Cup race was the team of teenager Parker Chase and veteran Ryan Dalziel, who drove their Audi R8 LMS to victory in the GT SprintX feature. Chase, a 17-year-old from New Braunfels, Tex., scored his first GT Overall win. Dalziel, a multi-time GT race winner, started the race in the No. 19 Audi and was running third when he passed off the car to the teenager. Chase is the youngest driver in the history of the event to win the Rose Cup.

“It was terrific to work with PIR, the local sports car clubs and the Pirelli World Challenge folks to bring professional sports car racing back to Portland,” said Gary Bockman, President of Friends of PIR (FOPIR), the organizer of the event. “The hot weather matched the hot action on the race track, that’s for sure. We thank the many volunteers that made this event possible and we are already looking forward to the 59th Rose Cup Races in 2019.”

Jack’s Specialty Parts

Last month we put a picture of Jack Corley on the cover of the paper… I neglected to put a caption on that picture saying “Next Month” a story about Jack Corley. I got a few calls asking why did you put a picture and on the cover? “I looked all through the paper for the story and there isn’t one.” I laughed it off and made a couple lame excuses about it being a nice picture of Jack and that Jack is a good guy and long-time supporter of R & R NW. Well Jack is a nice guy and the picture in lasts month issue was a good picture and representative of what you’ll find at swap meets all over the Northwest throughout the year. He is a hard-working vendor helping old car enthusiasts from all over, to restore, rebuild, refurbish their old cars, me included!

Jack has been in the parts business longer than some of you reading this have been… He started in parts/sales in Portland at George Lawrence Co. Warehouse back in 1955. He moved to a manufacturers rep. with Niehoff in 1956 where he worked for just a few days/weeks short of 20 years. He’s been in the automotive/race car world before that. Starting in 1953 working for Ed Tonkin’s Motors, a Kaiser dealership, on then named, Union Avenue in Portland.

He simultaneously operated a “race car performance parts, side hustle” business, called Jack’s Specialty Speed starting in 1956 featuring race car stuff. He even built and rented complete race cars to racers and he bought and sold race cars too. Through his travels as he came across “excess inventory” at dealerships he would buy that inventory. Car manufacturers limited what and how much a dealership could return in terms of parts. Speaking from experience, I once was the “parts manager” at a dealership, the OE manufacturer seemed to make it as difficult as possible to return parts, I think in an effort to discourage returns. That’s just my opinion. This practice created an opportunity to acquire OE parts and Jack took advantage of it. He also bought out aftermarket parts stores excess inventories. Jack would load these buys in the trunk of his car which was often overloaded and take them home where he eventually built a 15,000 square foot building to store and inventory the stuff.

Essentially, he ended up with what I’ll call a “Parts House,” specializing in old, maybe obsolete, primarily “hard parts.” And he called it Jack’s Specialty Parts. For about 10 years Jack would hold a “Swap Meet” in the backyard parts paradise. They had a Friday night, movie night, camp out, the night before the swap meet. Unfortunately, I never attended, mostly because I was simply unaware, too bad. It sounds like that was a lot of fun.

In about 1999, Jack “retired”… well, he started selling parts from this parts house full time. About 10 years ago he moved to his currently location at 909 NE Cleveland Ave., in Gresham. If you never been there you should go visit him. Over the years he has collected way more than a few auto-related, what I’ll call memorabilia pieces and they decorate many square feet of the walls of his “store.” Jack tells me that he had to down size considerably, that part of his business when he moved.

If you’re looking for hard parts for your latest rebuild of your treasured old car, you have an old car parts house as close as your phone. Jack has many years of experience in parts to help you make that treasure as good as it can be. Give him call at 503-667-1725, or visit him at 909 NE Cleveland Ave. in Gresham, OR.

Points & Plugs

Building an old car or should I say resurrecting an old car, whether you restore it, resto-mod it or whatever, is both rewarding and frustrating both at the same time. You’ll always need parts and parts are often hard to find, or even not available at all. This has been the case for as long as people have been “restoring” anything that’s been out of production for many years.

The scenario has actually spawned an entire industry, reproduction parts, after-market parts, performance parts etc. not to mention the many shops that specialize in repairing/rebuilding old things for you.

Being a self-proclaimed “Car Guy” for as long as I can remember, I have been fixing/restoring these old cars for a long time. When I first jumped into a restoration with both feet (in 1973) the car I was restoring was just 13 years old. At that time older Corvettes were just that… old. Nobody restored them then really. The good news was a lot of parts were still available right from the dealer, but not everything. Specialty wrecking yards had come into being and because Corvettes were popular you could find most of what you needed either new or good used. Reproduction parts didn’t really exist then, except for reproduction body parts.

As good used parts began to disappear and GM discontinued production on the older stuff “repops” of the many hard to find parts became available. Some of the first reproduction parts were just ok at best but as time passed better quality repro parts were produced, thankfully.

For many metal cars when new OE parts weren’t available you had to search high and low for good used ones and when those became scarce another aspect of the after-market/reproduction parts industry was born even to include entire bodies being stamped and or new parts/cars made of fiberglass.

Unfortunately, some of the repro parts looked good but didn’t fit or weren’t made quite right, poor bends, wrong size, thinner metal. As time passed improvements have been made but I personally have recently experienced extreme frustration with the quality, fit and finish of after market parts for my 55 Chevy Sedan. I bought repro-doors. They look amazing! They aren’t cheap to buy or ship, and they don’t fit… period. I’ve expressed my disappointment to some of the “pros” I know and asked if they had experienced the same thing. The answer was uniformly a resounding “YES.” I couldn’t believe it! These parts are expensive! They cost a ton and to have them not fit really makes me mad.

I know that the fit and finish of a 55 Chevy from new wasn’t as precise as modern cars are today, so I have to say I expected a little bit of fitment issues but… when you look close the style lines aren’t straight, the bends aren’t crisp, the mating surfaces are way off plumb, the upper front corners where they meet the cowl and the fender are at least ¼ of an inch too high and not shaped correctly to match up with the cowl and fender. They aren’t even close! And to repair them would take a master metal man, not a novice like me.

I have six old OE doors but they too need repair (a qualified metal man) and would likely cost a lot of money to repair them but having to spend a lot of money on repairing brand new doors that you just spent a lot of money to buy is really disappointing. Don’t’ get me wrong reproduction parts have improved dramatically but these doors are a long way from being a bolt on and go, part.

I hope this poor quality fit and finish gets fixed soon and it has improved some but there is a long way to go before I’ll be happy. Buyer Beware.

Medford Rod & Custom Show

It’s always exciting when spring arrives. Better weather is coming and with it, car shows, cruise-ins, swap meets and other fun car related events begin to happen everywhere. Of course, there are big car shows in January, February, March, and April through-out the Northwest. In fact, there are so many that this lowly reporter just can’t get to all of them. Luckily, (and thankfully) I have several dedicated volunteers who can cover some of them and that lets us be able to bring you stories about them.

One I’ve been covering for a number of years now, is the Medford Rod & Custom Show. Promoter, Rich Wilson, always does a great job of getting new and different entrants to bring their cars for all of us to enjoy. It would be pretty boring to see the same cars, trucks, and motorcycles every year. At this show you don’t have to worry, there’s something different every year.

Many of you reading this may recall the marque Kaiser and/or Frazier. Some of you, probably have never heard of them. Fewer still, of you have ever actually seen either of them in person. There was a Frazier on display at the Medford Rod and Custom Show. It wasn’t a hot rod or a custom, but a restored and well preserved old car that took me down memory lane.

I’ve mention before that Rich does something that I’ve only seen at his show. Any of you that have shown your cars in a show like this can confirm that it is a lot of work. Cleaning, polishing, setting up your display and then maintaining it throughout the show can be a challenge and with your car on display you’re kind of stuck. You can’t really go home, you may not live locally, you can’t go back to your hotel, you have to keep your display looking clean and fresh. Rich creates a small “Participants Lounge” area at the show, where you can go to get a snack, a soda or just relax when all that dusting becomes too tedious. I’ve only ever seen this terrific idea at the Medford Rod & Custom Show. Other show promoters take note!

This year the weather co-operated and stayed clear and sunny for the most part. The better weather resulted in a very busy Hot Rod parking area just outside the several display buildings. Many who came to see the show drove their own old car/hot rod etc. which created an outdoor cruise atmosphere and additional car display for everyone to enjoy.

If you’ve never participated in or gone to this great show as a spectator, put it on your “to do list” for 2019. It’s worth it!


Portland Swap Meet

The 54th Annual Portland Swap Meet has come and gone again for another year. The weather even co-operated mostly this year. That doesn’t mean the wind didn’t blow and that it didn’t rain… No, it means the weather has been worse during other years. It rained some and the wind blew some, but the swap meet was as successful as ever.

One of my friends has accused me of having rust in my veins… I don’t! Well at least I don’t think I do, but I am getting old. However, back to the PSM. It’s been around a long time. It’s changed some, grown, it’s shrunk, it’s been rained on etc. and yet it continues to be a one of the best swap meets on the west coast.

The organization that puts it on has gotten it down to a science at this point. There are large parking areas conveniently near by where one can catch any number of shuttle buses that will take you to and from quickly and easily. This swap meet is well attended and the attention to traffic flow and transportation is much appreciated and well-orchestrated by the organizer.
I always find most if not all of what I’m needing for my projects. I’m looking forward to the next Portland Swap Meet, which by the way, is scheduled for April 5-6 & 7 2019. Put the date on your calendar and plan to attend.