1932 Ford Clarke Hot Rods | 1932 Ford Frame Chassis
Clarke Hot Rods

100_3368Friday started out with another dose of pure insanity – the LA Roadster Show Swap Meet has no assigned swap meet spots – the entire deal is first come first serve. The guy who was 4th in line was there at noon on Wednesday. That’s right 48 hours before the gates open. The gates opened at 10am, so I wandered out there around 9:30 – parked my roadster to the side and walked throught the rows to find Max and Bob – They got in line at 3am, and rolled in the gate at 10:30. Since my roadster is for sale, I planned to park it in the swap area over the weekend, and figured that I should park it inside the show Friday.

The LA Roadsters club has some basic rules – the car must be finished, with nice paint and upholstery. When the LA Roadsters club started the show, the idea was to make hot rodders appear more friendly to the public, and not a bunch of trouble making kids – so they only wanted nice respectable cars in the show. This is basically the only rules they enforce.

The most interesting part of the show – It is free – if you have a roadster, you and your car get in free.

I ran around the swap meet taking some pics and buying some stuff – I tried to buy only small things given the limited space in Max’s trailer, and the fact that I am 2500 miles from home. This is the best early Ford swap meet I have ever attended – by far. So many stocker ’32’s for sale – a slick fresh roadster right out of a garage – coupes – sedans…Kinmont brakes…awesome. Read more »

100_3291Since the weather is so awesome here, we’ve been leaving the balcony door open at night for the cool fresh air instead of running the air conditioning.  The light coming in usually wakes me up, but I slept a little later this morning since I was out late racing in Huntington Wed night. Instead the sound of a rumbling flathead woke me up around 7:30….Hot Rods had begun invading the hotel parking lot. I got up and wandered down to breakfast and checked out what we had in the lot – a few guys had arrived from Missouri – driving – two roadsters and a 3w coupe, the Lesky’s of Ionia Rod Shop also arrived with the green roadster.

The big event on today’s agenda was LimeWorks Open house and lunch. This is only the second year they have done this, and it had more than doubled in size – it was advertised as being 11 to 2, but Steve told me people were there at 8am – and when we left at 4, there were new cars arriving. So much for a lunch event, it turned out to be an all day event. I guess that is a testament to the the many customers they have, and people that have Read more »

100_3212Back on the road Wednesday – I took Tuesday off from the hot rod vacation, and did some work in the hotel room in the morning on the computer, then took the roadster up into the mountains by myself and just rode around till dusk…no stopping, no pics…just me, cool mountain air, and an open car. I one read an article in Hot Rod I think it was about the 10 cars you should own – on the list naturally was a Deuce roadster, and the author described it as a “mood alteration vehicle”…someone google that and find out who wrote that…I remember a corvette was on the list, and the authors choice was “make mine a ’62 fuelie in honduras maroon”.

So Wednesday was back on the road – some friends from FL arrived today, Chuck Burns and his neighbor Daniel. They rented a Jeep Liberty, so we decided to give the roadster a day off, and the five of us hit the road to see the sights. Let set the Jeep into the wind – headed for Corona – to Marcel’s Custom Metal. I had never been to Marcel’s before, and thsi was real treat. I could not help buy stand in the shop and think of how many cars came out of that shop, shaped by Marcel and his two sons Marc and Luc, that changed not only hot rodding, but Read more »

@ Scandinavian

@ Scandinavian

Coming back to the hotel last night from dinner, Max spotted a huge puddle of oil under the rear axle of his F250 – uh oh…it was oil…from the pinion seal. So early this morning we limped it over the a shop in Diamond Bar down from the hotel to see what the deal was – the owner operator Chris(who had a money ’56 Vicky) put it up on the lift, pulled the drive shaft, and the yoke off the pinion shaft – the seal had worn a groove in the yoke….really?? in an ’04 with 90k? Wow.

So while the big truck was under repair, we decided to hop in the roadster and hit up on of the shops near the the hotel and wait for the call to come pick up the truck. Since we’ll be at SoCal for the big party on Friday night, we decided to see what the Kennedy Brothers were up too. As you may know, I’m pretty big fans of these guys and their work(see previous posts about hot rod costumes) – We were greeted at the gate by the fierce and menacing guard dogs, a pair of  Italian greyhounds (Davinci and Sinatra.) I snagged a couple treats from the bowl on the front counter at the hotel before we left…dogs love me. I didn’t take a a whole bunch of pics there – as they were leaving for lunch when we arrived, but I did get a shot of a stocker rolling ’32 chassis that was hiding in a container just inside the front gate of their place. It is amazing how in California, stuff like this is just sitting around – outdoors or in sheds. The shop was full of cars and projects – so much that Jay’s Deuce vicky was sitting outside under a carport Read more »

100_2975As I’m writing this, the Los Angeles Lakers have just closed out the Magic for the NBA Championship!  Congrats to Phil and the team. I’m a huge basketball fan, and I can’t beileve they rebuilt another team so quickly and won it all….wow…

Today started as just another cool crisp morning in California – after getting some breakfast at the hotel , we were blasting off down “the 10”  to the the 39th annual Antique Nationals at Fontana. I love building hot rods that you can go 80-85 in the left lane on the freeway in – and blowing by the white knuckled 55mph crew in the right lane. PUNCH IT.

At any rate, this is a very cool event, vintage drag racing open to pre ’55 cars of all types. In addition to the racing there is a car show section to park the regular cars in…but hey are far from regular. I have some video from this, I’ll work on getting it up soon, but here are the pictures to hold you over for now…..

Don Dillard was in town in his super-patina’ed green ’32 that was featured in Rodder’s Journal Issue #32 – in case you didn’t know, Don was side swiped in that car a while back and the right front of the car was smashed up pretty good.  He has it back on the road and the new parts and reparied old parts look about like the first parts – if that makes any sense?? Read more »

100_2901I was standing in line at 6am this morning to buy a donut and a bottle of water. I don’t drink coffee.  The cute little girl handing me my change was the typical California girl in every way – if the Beach Boys made music videos in ’65, this girl could have been the star. If you asked this girl where she worked, she would brush back her blonde hair, smile, and tell you about this little mom&pop donut shop. And she may or may not mention in conversation that on Saturday mornings at this particular shop, all these old cars that show up. The Donut Derelicts is what car culture is all about in Southern California. You could bring someone from Albany Georgia here, they could spend 2 hours in the parking lot of this donut shop, talk to ten guys about their cars, and understand exactly the mentality of a California car guy. Outside of So-Cal, has anyone seen an under-construction belly tanker and a stocker ’32 Roadster at a weekly parking lot BS session? In Florida, this would be fully of ’38 Chevy 4-door sedans and rat-turd rods….unreal.

For years I have read about Brian Brennan attending the Donut Derelicts on Saturday mornings. He has mentioned it in his editorial so many times over the years, and of all the years I’ve been out to SoCal for various auto events, Read more »

Bad Ass 5w...


My roadster is on its 3rd speedometer – the first one died 92 miles into its life – the second made it to about 2000 miles. I put this one in the week before the car left for CA – When I dropped it off at Max’s house for him to haul it out, the odometer read 150 miles…I would love to drive a roadster out here from FL one time…but it is hard enough to schedule time to be here for the week of the show, let alone another 4-5 days for the drive out. I guess I’m putting this in my “one-day” file, even though I’ve lived most of my life without one of those files. I guess that is why I’m sitting on the balcony of a hotel in SoCal writing this…and not in a 12th floor office in downtown Orlando with a neck tie on…

My flight arrived at around noon local time, Max and Bob picked me up from Ontario International – and rushed me to the hotel. I couldn’t figure out why they were in such a hurry…then Bob mentioned that I needed to clean the roadster up from the trip out, so “we” could go down to Whittier to a little Friday night show. Great. We headed down a little early – about 4 or so to beat the traffic on the 57. Since we were in Whittier, we figured we should stop by Limeworks an see Steve and the guys. The shop was buzzing at 4 on a Friday, tons of cars in process – a beater steel ’32, a 4-door with a blown Hemi – you know typical Limeworks style…haha

Back in the car and over to the parking lot cruise night….about 200 cars or so I’d guess, which is nothing for this weekly deal, a couple of the locals said it often is upward of 400. We have nothing like this in FL – we have a gathering once a month in downtown New Smyrna beach, with about 150-200 cars – but there is nothing like this. The event was held in a mall parking lot right in front of  a Sears store – and get this, Read more »

Update One: From seat 21d on a 757, most likely over Texas.

I’d like say this is a live update, but I don’t have internet at 30k feet. But it will be ready to publish when I hit the ground in PHX(layover)

Max called last night, he and Bob rolled into Diamond Bar yesterday afternoon, roadster is in good shape ready to hit the streets of sunny southern California. Read more »

My flight touches down in Ontario at 2pm pacific time on Thursday. Max should be rolling into town at that time with the roadster. I will be updating this site with updates several times a day for the entire week – commentary, picturs, videos, interviews, etc. This could be nearly as good as being there yourself. Many of you followed us last year, in case you didn’t you can see those posts last year HERE

Saturday morning we’ll be driving down to Huntington for the Donut Derelicts, hitting up the Antique Nationals, and spending the entire week visiting the various shops and after parties. Most people know about the big party/open house at So-Cal, but we are going to take you all to the smaller gatherings, inside the shops you only hear about after the fact.

Bookmark the page, subcribe via RSS, or whatever you choose…you’ll want to keep coming back every day…or several times a day.