Winter Project Time


It's that time of year again here in Washington where the winters have two attributes; cold rainy days or crisp cool nights. Just like George from Seinfeld the cold air and the world of moisture rarely collide. This is the only state that I know of where a slight flurry will light up my Facebook account with adults joyfully shouting in all caps....IT'S SNOWING!!!! I'm serious it happened last night. The local news is dominated with stories like "Snowpocalyps 2013". Murder, extortion even  sports all take a back seat to the live roaming news anchors around the region all reporting the SAME THING, "It snowed two inches...don't you dare take your $60,000 all wheel drive SUV out unless it is an emergency.  IT IS DANGEROUS OUT HERE!! So what does this have to do with hot rods? Well this time of year I get excited to get some momentum going on some projects for the coming season. We have lots of cool stuff in the shop right now. This is the first time that there has only been one Camaro in the shop. We have a 32 Nash 3 window that was built in the 80's or early 90's that is getting a total freshen up. A 51 Chevy truck just received a TCI front clip and rear suspension to transform the way it drives.

The 63 T-bird just left today with a rebuilt motor, new fuel tank and a host of goodies so the owner can put many trouble-fee miles on it this summer. The 65 Impala is getting a total transformation with new Baer brakes, Ride-Tech suspension. Overdrive transmission and a 420 HP 383. The car used to change lanes automatically when the owner reached down to change the radio station. I can't wait for him to take the barge through the twists.



This one is getting my attention right now. A rust free black plate California 67 Nova. It is equipped with Detroit Speed and Engineering front and rear suspension 6 speed transmission and an LS9 power plant  For those of you unfamiliar with the LS9, it just happens to be the most powerful engine ever put in a vehicle by Chevrolet. It is in the ZR1 Corvette. 638 hp from the factory. This one will be over 700 hp with a simple little tune! This week I am welding in the rear suspension. We expect to be out enjoying this one in bare metal by summertime.

If you have a project of your own going together, I hope I've motivated you to turn the TV off, put on an extra layer of cloths and head out to the shop and let the sparks fly! One thing I'm learning is time flies quicker than you think. "The nights are getting longer, it won't be long,Won't be long till the summer comes.....

SEMA 2012 - Best Show Ever

Well after a crazy time getting a car ready to take to SEMA and the busy week in Vegas a week ago I am finally starting to feel normal again. I'm sitting in my favorite comfy chair enjoying a nice cozy night at home with the heat turned up to keep winter's cold rain at bay. It's hard to believe I was enjoying 80 degree heat in the desert a short time ago. 

I honestly think this was the best SEMA show ever. The amount of people walking around, The build quality of feature cars and the innovation from vendors was second to none. I went on several car forums and realized there was a lot of cool things I never even saw after being there a full week!

Here are a few of the many highlights for me this year:

I realize this year more than ever that it truly takes a team of talented people to get a car done in time but even more that talent, it takes fortitude and tenacity when the clock and challenges are stacking up against you.  We had plenty of time to wrap the car up prior to SEMA. I've learned my lesson from past years I thought I was prepared- wrong. The final week and even up to the final hours we were plagued with a EFI system that would not fire the engine. A complete car that won't start! I was ready to throw in the towel and clean off Redemption (last year's SEMA car) and hit the road. I couldn't let my team down. They and so many vendors had skin in the game to see this car to the finish.

Another awesome experience for me this year was meeting or reconnecting with some incredibly humble and genuine industry people. Bobby Alloway is a hero of mine who was so nice in person. Jeff Smith came by to check out the Chevelle and proceeded to tell me he had a blue '66 at home. "Ya I know Jeff, I've been reading about that car for years when you were with Car Craft and Hot Rod through out my childhood years."  He was and is someone I look up to and admire. I could never imagine as a 7th grader that someday he would be checking out a car I built! Rob Kibbie from the Musclecar Place is as nice in person as the many times we have talked on the phone but never met. The support from Dynomax team was again a win. I am thankful for their trust in the CHC team. Finally, seeing Ken Block do his thing in person is a mind blowing experience that video does not do justice.


As I was standing in the Dynomax Booth I was drawn into a conversation with a gentleman that was an assembly line worker for GM and put the left front fenders on Chevelles! He loved the workmanship on the CHC build - whew we passed the inspection.

If you ever have an opportunity to attend in the future I would say...GO! Where else can you see all the latest offerings from every genre of the automotive world. The creativity and innovation are second to none.