I decided to start this blog to as an avenue for me to be able to post about some of the fun things that I do from time to time. It could be a Car Show revue, what I did on Vacation, what I like about this or that automobile, my experience with a photo shoot, what I have in my Automobilia collection, or whatever I think of at the moment. I hope you like it! All feedback will be appreciated.

Saturday, May 26, 2012

Video: Ferrari Racing Days - Ferrari 333SP

This is the 1st of 2 videos I have completed of the 333SP. This is all the track footage.

VIDEO: F2003 GA at Ferrari Racing Days 2012

I have a little to talk about regarding my day of the Ferrari Racing Days event at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca. But for now I have 2 videos completed to share. This is the Ferrari F2003 GA Rubens Barrichello chassis that belongs to F1 Cliente memeber, Bud Moeller. ENJOY!

Monday, May 14, 2012

Video: Customs at the Goodguys 30th All American Get-Together 2012

I spent most of my day inside at the show due to the rain forecast. Here is a selection of the customs that were inside at the show. 

Autobody Courses are now complete.

The time has finally arrived! I have completed another semester of Junior College. I started back in the Fall 2010 Semester after mentioning to a gentleman I had met while working as a sales associate at the Ferrari Store in San Francisco. It started out to be a good day, and well it got even better. I was working downstairs when I happened to notice this gentleman coming down the stairs. I recognized him, but was unable to recall his name. So I just said - "Hey! I know you!" Not really the thing to say to a potential customer, but I said it anyways. He then says - "Really! Who am I?" Yes the guy can be a funny person. I simply responded by saying - "You're on that show! World's Most Expensive Rides." He then said - "Yes I am!" am we then started into a general conversation. This gentleman was Fireball Tim Lawrence. The Hollywood movie car builder. So as the conversation went on, I happened to mention to him that I was contemplating on going back to school. Yes I was pretty hesitant to do it at the time. However, he simply asked me "What are you looking to go back to school for?" So I let him know I wanted to get into Custom Car Building. He immediately told me I should just do it. So, since it was coming from someone that knows a lot about cars, my decision was made. I had been asked several times by my wife if I wanted to go back to school several times, but, as I said, I was pretty hesitant about doing it. Well that no longer was an issue when that conversation ended. So, I have to thank Fireball Tim for helping get that decision set.

It wasn't to long after that, that I had started to check into the Community Colleges in the area, and I decided to go to Modesto. I signed up to receive a class catalog, and I was on my way to doing something serious again. To take a step back for a moment, I just have to fill in anyone that may be reading this that I quit going to school at 15 to get a job. I eventually did go get my General Education Diploma when I was 18. Hence, the reason why I was hesitating to go back to school. I was frightened to go back. Now, as things are different, I am very happy I did go back. I have been doing rather well. I signed up for school, and went to my scheduled orientation. The problem however, I wasn't able to get into my Autobody classes right out the gate. But, I did get into 2 classes to get my credits. These eventually factored into my plans for the A.S. Degree I want to finish off an receive. I finished the Fall semester with good grades, and signed up for the Spring semester when the date came up. At this time, I was however able to get things on track and take the classes I needed. The first Automotive Collision Repair lass, as well as the first Automotive Refinishing class. I also took two others that semester. An Introduction to Tech Industries, as well as something I felt I needed to do, a Basic Photography course. I went through the semester and did pretty well again. The grades were almost perfect. Once again I surprised myself by accomplishing good results.

The Spring semester was done, I did well, and I then decided I would take a Summer class. I decided to take a Healthful Living course to put towards my General Education that is required for the degree. Little did I expect it to be as hard as it was. I had most of the Summer off, until the the class started around the end of July. I went in and as I had not expected, it was pretty difficult for me. This class was a condensed version down to 5 weeks, and was 4 days a week. I struggled a bit, but pushed myself through. Well as it turns out, I did way better than I had figured I could do. 5 weeks of hard work paid off with an "A" to my GPA.

Then the time for another full Fall semester of classes had come. I I had signed up for 4 classes this time and I knew it was about to be pretty rough for me to get through it. But, I did it anyways. I signed up for the second installment for Autobody Collision, as well as the second Automotive Refinishing course. Besides those two, I signed up for a General Automotive course that would help me to learn my way around an engine. My fourth class was to be a course that would count towards my General Education for the requirements for my A.S. Degree. The class was Critical Reading. I managed to get through the semester, the long nights of studying, and being stressed out. My grades were good, my GPA stayed up, and somehow I managed to get myself on the Deans List for my hard work. Not bad for a 38 year old man that never went to High School.

Now for the recent semester. I signed up to finish my final Autobody Collision class, as well as my Math Pre-Algebra class. These 2 classes I needed to complete so I could get my Certificate of Achievement. Then I signed up for an Independent Study course I needed so I could get my Skill Recognition award. I was hoping to be able to work on some of my own projects in this course, but as things always go, I didn't get anything done of my own. It started out when in the first week, my instructor was bringing in a couple of bowling pins he managed to get for me from his neighbor. Well when he was bringing them in, he had them in a Western Flyer Chief Wagon. So I asked him if he was going to restore it. He immediately replied with a - NO! You Are! I actually got really excited! So I spent most of the semester working on it. The end result was better than I had expected it to be. Then I was able to repaint a Communication Sign Board that had been sitting in the shop for 2 semesters. All I needed to do was sand it down and repaint it. As far as the Math class, I was pretty worried that I wasn't going to get through it and pass. But, somehow I managed to get it done and I passed. So that completed my Spring semester. I went the following week to the Technical Education Ceremony for Certificate and Skill Recognition, and after that was over, I went to lunch with a few of my fellow classmates to celebrate our achievements.

So! What do I do now? Well, I am looking for a job. I am taking the Summer off from school, and Will be taking 1 class per semester until I get my A.S. Degree. I have been to 2 interviews so far, as well a a 3rd possible. The first was a bomb. The second I have called back but have not gotten a reply to my call. The third I went in and dropped off my resume. This one may be the one that hopefully pans out, and it's one I prefer to hopefully get. It's at a local Custom Paint shop. Now let's see what happens.

Just to share, Here are a few of my class projects -
This is a Podium Desk that several of us worked on.
No pictures from before.
They were into the tear down before I was able to do so.
So here is the back side.
Here is the sides in progress.
I thought about doing a flame job,
but the scallops worked out much better.
Here's the layout -
Here is the final result. Including my horrible striping job.
Not Bad! But I wish we could have done it better.
Here is a Boat Motor Cover that needed some fixing.
2 other students had worked on it. Both did crappy paint jobs.
SOMEHOW I managed to get it done right.
After the sanding!
The final result!
Not Bad!
This is my Bowling Pin project from the Fall 2011 Semester.
This is how it was when I bought it for 2 bucks from a thrift store.
Here I am shooting the clear.
This is how it looks currently.
If you want to see the all of my pics from the project -
This video is from my General Automotive class from my Fall Semester.
A Full Engine Tear Down and Rebuild.
This is of the final result of the hard work.
This is the Western Flyer Wagon I restored in the Spring 2012 Semester.
DANG IT! I forgot to shoot pics before I took it apart.
This is the final result.
If you would like to see all of the pics from the restoration - http://razzi.me/a/10492
Here is the Communication Sign Board.
Yes! Once again I forgot to take photos before I took it all apart.
The end result!
What a fun time the classes were for me! Now to complete the General Education classes.

Friday, May 11, 2012

Road Trip to Arizona - Day 3 - Route 66 part 1

As the title says, this days writing has been broken up into two parts. I have so much to talk about, that I didn't want to have such a long reading. And, I didn't want to cut some things out of it either. So please read on, then check out part 2.

After having a good nights rest, we got up and headed downstairs for breakfast. Then we were off to check out Kingman. We left the hotel, hit the highway, and today was a little like the previous day. Only with more rain. But hit 68 and we headed East anyways to make the best of it. As we were on our way, we drove through Golden Valley. This place is pretty wide spread, but the only thing that caught my eyes was a place on the North side of the highway that was full of classic Ford trucks. I wanted to stop and get a shot, but I wasn't able to. Oh Well! Then we came up and over the crest on the East end of the valley and hit Highway 93 and dropped in to Kingman. Once off the highway, I decided that I wanted to just drive down through to see what I would want to stop in and check out. So we headed down Beale Street, made a quick right, then a quick left and we were on Old Route 66.
As I drove and looked around, I was pretty much amazed at how many old buildings were still there. After the first turn off of Beale Street, there was the Old Power House, and Mr. D'z Route 66 Diner. Then we turned left and headed up 66. While driving, I was looking around, and while seeing the old Hotel Beale, the Arcadia Lounge & Lodge, as well as many other buildings, my mind got to wondering about how it must have been when the Mother Road was "The" road to be traveling. It was pretty cool to see these old places, but I was amazed actually by how they weren't being kept up. Yeah the Arcadia was still being used, but it would be nice to see it in better condition. The Hotel Beale had obviously seen much much better days. For a town that is part of the history of Old Route 66, I think it would be nice if they would find some way to preserve these buildings. The one that was very nicely restored though, was the Old Power House. More about that further down in the read.

So I kept driving and was getting a little far out of town, or so it seemed we were far out of town. So I turned around and headed back into town. But, as usual, I had seen somewhere that I just needed to stop. First was a  yard that had a few cool old items that caught my eye. So I pulled off the road and had my wife take a few shots with my iPhone. There was an old dirt bike with a side car that looked like it had been raced hard at some point. The motor wasn't even with the bike anymore. Then there was a cool old small tractor that also looked to have seen better days. But the one thing that really stood out, an old Quarter Midget Race Car. Now this was something that I would have loved to have seen if it was for sale. But not on this trip. Oh Well!

After having a look at the yard full of cool stuff and getting a few shots, I drove off. Then after a short drive I pulled into an antique shop. Middle Of The Road Antiques. As much as my wife hates it when I like to go walk through antique shops, I still stopped. Besides, my father like to hit them too, and I felt it was time to get us all out of the car for a few minutes. So we got out of the the car, in the rain, and walked in. As we walked in the door, sitting just a few feet away was a beautiful Ford Pickup. Yeah! That's what I said. It was inside the store. Then I started hitting the booths to see what I could find that wouldn't break the bank. So I kept it to a few small items. First I had seen a few items in a counter case, but decided not to get them. Then I found some records. I started going through them and found one I just had to have. Chet Atkins and Jerry Reed, "Me and Jerry". It has an old Ford Convertible on the cover. This is now in my collection of records that I have with cars on the covers. They get framed and then hung on my office wall. Then I found a couple of old 45 RPM records. So I kept looking and then I came to find a Ferrari Pin in a case. So I had to have that. Then I kept looking, found a few maybe items, but then found an old post card of the old novel "Go, Mam, Go!" with some cool Hot Rod art. Then I kept looking, found a few more maybe items, but I decided to just get the few items I had. I paid for them and talked with the lady at the register about some Moon Disc wheel covers that I was curious about. And of course, Not For Sale. Dang It! So we left and headed back down 66 to the Old Power House Museum. The adventure continues!
Ford Pickup at "Middle of the Road" Antiques
Me and Jerry
Chet Atkins and Jerry Reed
This will be on my office wall soon.

45's for my collection
It was rotated, but this is how it loaded up.

Had to have it!

Lapel/Hat Pin
Another one for the collection

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Today was a loooong day

So! Here's how my day went -

My mother-in-law wakes me up around 9:30am from downstairs with scream, my name. I ask what's going on. She then tells me she broke her arm. She was trying to step over a dog gate in the family room and fell backwards and she tried to break her fall. So I hurry up and get dressed. I get her to the E.R. and get her checked in. It ended up being her wrist. Around 2:00, still at the hospital, I see several nurses and doctors running out the E.R. door. I think they're just running out to get someone in the driveway. Then I see a few more go running out. So, not being nosey, I go to the restroom, then walk outside. A lady asks me, "Do you know what happened?" I tell her "No. I just came out". She then says "You I should go check it out". So I look out as I'm walking toward the parking lot and notice the carnage. My first thought, "Oh Crap! That's where I parked the car". So I go out and check on the car. The first thing I see, from the back, is dirt all over the car. I keep walking forward and I then notice the hood has damage. I see a maintenance worker and he then tells me, "The light pole bounced off the car". A minute or so later I see my father-in-law had just come outside. I call his name and wave for him to come out to the car, and then I tell him, "You better call the insurance company. There's damage to your car". He has someone take my mother-in-law back inside, then heads out to see what happened.

After that, I then I start to look around more. I see the SUV that caused the accident is in the planter just at the edge of the parking lot, and the entry to the parking lot. 3 cars destroyed, 1 missed, then my father-in-laws car. Then the light pole sitting in the driveway. It hit the wheel of the SUV on the other side of the entrance. I look around more. Pieces all over the street, the planter, and the parking lot. But then there's more! In the street is the car that the driver first hit, more debris, and 3-5 more vehicles parked at the curb. These must have been witnesses to the accident. Then I start to follow the trail of debris. I see where the light pole was originally. It was about 200 feet from where it was now sitting. Then I cross the driveway and keep following the debris. I notice that at the street corner it looks like to be where the accident originated. I keep looking for more clues and see more fresh bits of glass and small pieces from the vehicles when they collided. I see the bumper from the car, the foam that is used behind the bumper is scattered, along with so much it was quite disturbing to see so many pieces. Then I look back at where the SUV is at. HOLY CRAP! It was probably 500 feet away. The debris was scattered from that point to past the SUV, and about 50 -75 feet wide. It was like an explosion went off. It was crazy! Apparently a witness helped the guy out of his car, and he took off running. Hospital Security found him out back and apparently held him until the police showed up. Then, after about an hour we were finally allowed to leave. What's next?
Father-in-laws car
The Jeep Cherokee was untouched
other than the dirt
The light pole is on the other side of the bush.
It hit the wheel of this SUV. It was between the
second and third tree. Accident originated at the
sign board you see just to the left of the flag pole.
This was a light pole

What Light Pole?
This is about where the accident originated. Notice the cars
bumper on the grass to the right. At the Red and Blue sign
is where the SUV finally stopped.

Road Trip to Arizona - Day 2 - Lake Havasu City

The day started out a little on the mellow side. We got up around 9:00am and got ready, then hit the hotel buffet for breakfast. We then left and headed South to Lake Havasu City to visit with my parents. We had not had any opportunities to get to visit them since they moved there, so we made sure to do so on this trip.
Looking North-East on Interstate 40
After checking directions on my phone, we headed out across the river to Bullhead City and drive down from there. What a mistake that turned out to be. If we had only known it was a much slower drive, we would have made the drive down on the California side where there is only a few traffic lights, and these were just south of the Casinos, with nothing until you get to Needles. Yeah the speed limit was only 55, but, I would rather drive than sit at traffic lights. Our drive down ended up taking about 2 hours. If we had gone the other way, we could have cut out at least 30 minutes.

Anyways! We got through the traffic lights, down to Interstate 40, and headed East. Since the drive to Laughlin was quite long, I never did pull off the highway to get any photos of Historic Route 66. So, I found a chance to get it done and pulled off. I asked my wife to take a pic of me with a road sign. The weather was a little on the bad side, so my wife took the shot out the open car window. Then I grabbed it took a shot of the sign itself.  Then we were back on the road.
Under the sign!
Yes my wife didn't realize
her finger was in the way
After a short drive, we made our exit onto Highway 95. Then we made it to Lake Havasu City. I got to my parents place, and, they were not at home. So I called them, and they had been in town and would be heading home in a few minutes. Well that few minutes ended up being about 30 minutes. Possible longer. They finally got home and since we were all hungry, I asked my father to decide where to go. 5 minutes later we were at a place called Rusty's. My parents said they come here quite a lot. The place was very clean and the waitress was very friendly. I knew then why they came here. We got our order, which was actually pretty decent. Then I stepped away from the table for a few minutes, and when I returned, my wife had mentioned that she invited my parents to come with us to Kingman, as well as the Grand Canyon. You would think I would have been a little upset about it, but since I don't get to visit with them as often as I used to, I was okay with it. But, we then had to get another room at the hotel for the to stay. So back on my phone I went to check room availability via Hotel.com. First I had to download the ap to my iPhone. Once that was completed, we checked for a room. However I had to wait to complete the transaction due to issues I wasn't able to deal with at the moment. So we finished up our meal and headed over to the "London Bridge" since my wife had wanted to check it out.
Entrance to London Bridge
London Bridge
We arrived, parked and walked into the visitors center. After about 10 minutes of looking around, we walked out to the river walk under the bridge. My wife was hoping that there were some English Style shops, but was dissappointed when we got there and as it turns out, there are none to be found. So we made the best of it. We took a few photos, then went back to my parents place. Once we got back to their house, I got the reservations completed so they could get things together and follow us up.While my mother was gathering their things, my father and I made a run to the local Safeway supermarket to grab a prescription that he had forgot to grab when he was at his appointment earlier in the day. On the way, my father also needed to go to th bank. So, while he was at the bank, I hit the Big Lots in the shopping center to see if they had any Hot Wheels. As luck would have it, they did. I ended up finding an error. To top it off, it was a Ferrari. So this find will stay in with my collection. After that we got his prescription and headed back to the house to finish up. 30 minutes or so later, we were on the road. But, my mother forgot her purse at the house. Fortunately, we were just around the corner when she realized she had forgotten it. So my wife and waited until they came back. After sitting on the side of the road, and freaking out a gentleman that just arrived home, because we pulled over in front of his house, I saw a road runner crossing the road up ahead. I hadn't seen one in probably 20 or more years, so I pulled forward to show it to my wife. It was kind of cool to see one again. MEEP! MEEP!
Desert Storm
My parents returned after about 10 minutes, and back on the road we were. As we headed out on highway 95, it started to rain. Yay! We're on vacation and it's raining. No big deal though. It wasn't to bad. But, the smell of the desert during a storm is definitely something I was enjoying. It may be the only thing I actually miss from the time I lived in the high desert here in California. Well that, and chasing the reptiles around to catch them. Anyway, we took it easy on the way back due to the weather, and after about an hour and 30 minutes, we were back at the hotel. So I checked in again, and we got everything into their room. We relaxed for a few minutes and then went back down for dinner. After that it was time for bed. We had a day of Route 66 touring to complete. But that happens tomorrow. THE ADVENTURE CONTINUES!

Saturday, May 5, 2012

Road Trip to Arizona - Day 1 - The Drive

As the plans had changed for what the weekend was to be, I was a little excited that my wife and I had decided to get out of town and go somewhere we had not yet been. When she decided to go to the Grand Canyon, I was more than happy to jump at the chance to go. So we made our plans sort of last minute and decided to stay in Laughlin, Nevada. I figured since we had not yet been there either, it would be a good middle point, and very inexpensive place to stay. So we hit Hotels.com and made our reservation. Where really wasn't a main part of the trip, and since we don't gamble, she decided in which hotel to stay at, and the reservations were set.

Southbound 99 - North Madera, CA.
On Wednesday evening, we got to bed at a decent time so we could leave town early Thursday morning. We got up, got ready, ate some breakfast, A cup of coffee, as well as plenty for the road. We left the driveway around 5:30am, and in about 5 minutes later, we hit the 99 freeway and headed South. As I was trying to keep from being bored, I decided to grab the cell, put on some tunes, as well as take some pics so I would have something to add to this blog entry. I was doing okay, my wife was sleeping, and I made it as far as Visalia before having to stop. So we exited the freeway and changed seats so I could take a short 30 minute snooze.

Southbound 99 - North Fresno, CA
After the 30 minute morning nap, I woke up and we were somewhere North of MacFarland, so I pulled out the cell phone to get some roadside pictures from the passenger seat to post on my Facebook status. Eventually we got to Bakersfield, then headed East on 58. We exited the first exit to fuel up so we didn't have to until after getting to Laughlin. We stopped at an Arco-AM/PM station, and for some reason I decided to go inside to use my card. What a mistake that turned out to be. The counter clerk was such an idiot about me using my card inside, He asked me a question that pissed me off. The funny thing is I do the same thing at the AM/PM at home. I was pissed that the guy couldn't figure out how to do such a simple task that I walked out and used my card at the pump.
Eastbound 58 - East Bakersfield, CA
After that, we hit the road for about 10 miles or so and exited again as my wife wanted to stop at the Murray Family Farms for some fruit. As we pulled into the lot I noticed a cool old Chevy truck. They had made it into a nice display with the business logo on the doors and some oranges on display. My wife went inside and, of course, I just had to walk over and get a photo of the truck. I then went inside and we spent about 20 minutes inside and bought what we wanted and hit 58 again. After seeing how nice the scenery was, I decided to exit again and grab a couple more pics with my cell. I grabbed my shots, and back on 58 in a matter of about 5 minutes. As we were driving, my wife had no idea as to what I was wanting to do next. HMMMMM! Once we got to the 14 Freeway in Mojave, I headed South again. I drove about 10 miles and exited the freeway, turned left, drove another 1/2 mile and made a right turn and drove about another 1/2 mile or so and made a U-turn then parked the car. I had decided to make a pit stop to check out Gene Winfield's place as I had never been there before. So since I was going to be withing 10 miles of the place, I figured this was my chance to check it out. Why? So I could come back and attend the "Winfield & Watson Car Show" or one of Gene's Metal Working classes. I had talked to Gene at the "Sacramento Autorama" event about wanting to come, so this gave me an idea to check it out before returning for another adventure. So, as it turned out, I could only check the place out from the outside of the fence. No Problem! I just pulled out the Canon 40D and took a few shots. After 10 minutes I was back in the car again.
Murray Family Farms
Murray Family Farms

We hit the 14 Northbound and then back onto 58 East to cross more of the desert. We got to Kramer Junction and I had another side plan in mind that the wife didn't know about yet. I made a quick left onto Highway 395 and stopped at an antique store that I had know about for quite a long time, but forgot about. Then one day while watching "American Restoration", they had gone to this place and bought an old gas pump. After watching the episode, I knew I needed to stop in when in the area. Well this was the chance of being less that 100 yards from it, and I stopped on in. The name - "Kramer Antiques". The bad part, I didn't have much time since we wanted to get to Laughlin at a reasonable hour. So we kind of hurried our way around the store, and if I had had more time, and money, I'm sure I would have found something to bring home. I also didn't get a chance to go through the warehouse. The place was pretty cool. I would definitely stop in again when I have more time to really look around. I asked a few questions about what I was looking for, but no item related in the place except for a neck tie. Then back on the road again. We didn't stop until we got to the hotel after this, so there really isn't much else to say. I checked in, we parked, got our stuff up to the room, then relaxed until it was time to go back down for dinner.
Gene Winfield's Place
Kramer Antiques - Kramer Juction
WAIT! I do have more to talk about. On the way through from Kramer Junction, we got to Barstow (BARFSTOW), and my eyes kept bouncing across both sides of Interstate 40. I was just wondering what it was like back in the day when old Route 66 was the road to be on while driving through here. I knew for years that this is where it had travelled through, as I had grown up in So-Cal about an hour South of here. I even installed a fiberglass pool in Barstow when I was about 16 or 17. I had been through Barstow several times. But back then, Route 66 wasn't really a big deal. Not sure why either. I have been on several sections from Santa Monica, Rancho Cucamonga, Fontana, Colton, Rialto, San Bernardino, up through The Cajon Pass, Victorville and of course Barstow. I even remember the Wigwam Motel in Rialto when I was a little kid. I thought it was odd back then, but in a oddly cool kind of sense. So where am I going with this? Well, while looking off to the south of Interstate 40 I was a looking for anything that was still around that was part of the history of Route 66. I saw several places. Now I have it my head for another great BUCKET LIST Adventure. Someday I want to drive whats left of Route 66.

One more thing! I did end up finally getting off the freeway before reaching Needles and asked my wife to get a shot of me with a road sign pointing out Route 66. But that happens tomorrow. THE ADVENTURE DOES CONTINUE!