Friday, November 21, 2014

Nostalgic Renderings

I got to thinking about all the cars I owned since I was driving age. The cobweb covered candy of how and why I came to own, drive, and sell each of them began to unfold...slowly...and this ain't all of them, folks. As I edit (oxymoron) this, more come to mind.

I started out with an A Model Ford that my Daddy used as his traveling car. He worked for the Air Force as a civilian consultant, and was paid mileage to use his own vehicle when the traveled to air bases in the Southeastern region. The Model A was his traveling car when the weather was nice. This was in the mid 50[s to early 60's, so the car had a few years on it.

There were hobby shops at airbases that loved to see the "A" come on base. During the week when he was working at the base, the shop would pamper it, reupholstering it, adding sealed beam headlights, etc. The airmen loved that car, and helped keep it in tip top shape.

I got it sometime later, after he went to a 1950 Plymouth. The Model A went thru college with me, and still exists (so my brother says) in a garage on the other side of Athens. I drove it all over the Southeast, and used it as a Jeep more than once. A tough and serviceable vehicle were the early Fords. I really didn't appreciated it the way I should have, but Daddy gave it to me, and another like it for parts. I suspect he did it so as not to have to drive us to school. Whatever his motivation, that old "A" was freedom for me.

1930 A model Ford
Next came the 1949 Chevy Fleetline, or Torpedo back. I bought it for $100.00 in Boulder Co., and drove it back to Athens with all six babbits knocking. A long and tense ride...never knowing when it was gonna' drop a rod. Huber's garage, the local Hudson dealership, rebuilt the motor for $75.00, and I drove it until I couldn't stand it any longer. That car was around Athens for a long time. I'd leave home, come back a year later and see the old Golden Goose somewhere.

1949 Chevy Fleetline
A cheap 1958 Chevy Bel Air came from  somewhere; a family car. I put a back yard spray job on it and fixed the overdrive transmission. Nice car, and it looked pretty good. I still wanted something sportier.

1958 Chevy 
I got a job in Washington DC after college, and needed something to move our stuff. How about a tri color 1955 Oldsmobile Holiday tudor hardtop coupe? Big V-8 under the hood, dual glasspacks...and a affinity for gasoline, at 29 cents a gallon. It pulled a big U Haul with no problem. Kept it till winter, and the thin southern blood would not start on cold mornings. Had to do something...and I did it wrong.

1955 Olds Coupe
I traded the Olds for my only new car...a 1966 International Scout, 2 wheel drive, and probably the WORST driving car I ever owned. Terrible car.
1966 Scout

On to a 1969 Datsun Pickup, a great little vehicle, until someone ran into the back and totaled it while it sat on the street. As you might guess, I was on my own by this time. Not enough room to kick a cat in that one

1969 Datsun Pickup
Then came a series of Chevy Suburbans. I still miss the old '66 and the 73. Those were tough, roomy, strong running trucks. I lived in the '66 one summer.
1966 Chevy Suburban
1973 Chevy Suburban
first with 4 doors

All  these major rides were augmented by a series of two or three Volkswagens and Volvos They were wore slick, but running, and were used for trade material.

1952 Chevy Sports Coupe
There was 52 Chevy wagon, and a wonderful 52 Chevy Sports Coupe

1952 Chevy Wagon

There was a long running love affair with the 122 and 140 series Volvos. The primo piece was my 1964 Volvo P 1800 sports coupe. Red and bad. I still have a couple of nice old Volvos on the farm. One runs...the other is a victim of laziness on my part. Should be running, but doesn't is a better way to put it.
1964 Volvo P 1800

North Georgia produced one of the 1954 Chevy trucks. The other 54 I bought to drive from WV to Georgia hauling two Icelandic ponies. Another long trip. Both these girls still stand guard over the North 40, and both do run. My belly and the steering wheel are at odds in the blue truck, but the 3/4 ton "granny gear"and I get along fine.
1954 Chevy pickup

Which ones would I like to have back? The 1966 Chevy Suburban, the 1955 Olds, and the 1964 Volvo P 1800, the Chevy Sports Coupe and the Wagon. wonder where they are? Probably part of a cheap lawn chair or a microwave.

Nowadays cars are just...what? Traveling juke boxes, Soccer wagons, people movers. I don't see how anyone could get attached to one of the ugly little sawed off weird colored look alikes. Just pieces of lightweight metal, fiberglass, and plastic with no class.

How's that for my personal, unsolicited  assessment of today's automobiles.

Hope you enjoy the pictures, They were fun to find on line...ran into many other favorites, Frasers, Packards, Hudsons, Studebakers and many more. Fun digging up bones.

"Lord, Mr. Ford, I wish that you could see what your simple horseless carriage has become"! (Jerry Reed)

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