Originally Posted by TucsonJay
Brian, What customs, restorations, or hot rods did you do that were the most fun... or you were proudest of? Looks like you did quite a few!
Honestly, all of them. They all offered a challenge and was generally proud of them. But anyone who has done that kind of work can probably agree with me that you have mixed emotions when a car leaves. If the guy were to pay you a million dollars for the work and take it, it just doesn't seem like it would be enough. Yet if he just took it and gave you nothing but it was out of your life, that would be fine too.
At least that is how I often felt after working on something so long. Obviously cars that won awards is always a high and the having cars in the Grand Nationals was a kick and a half, a show that I had went to for years the first one I touched that got in there was of course the most exciting. I did no construction what so ever with only all the paint and body, but I was 20 years old and that was WILD!
It was in the main arena just 50-100 feet from the winner of America's Most Beautiful Roadster, so that was something I was VERY proud of. I think I have spoke about this before here. It was so packed that I went thru the whole show and didn't see the car! I had to go up into the stands in the main arena (where the Warriors basketball is played) to find the car with my girlfriend and then go back down into the crowd to see it up close.
It's in the bottom left hand corner of this page.
I opened up my shop not three years later.
I was working a collision shop and was laid off, right after Christmas in early Jan 82. My girlfriend had became my wife and she was about 8.5 months pregnant. I drove off in my dads F-100 (that blue one that was in Rodders Journal) with my pregnant wife with the tool box in the bed of the truck and told my self I was never going to let that happen again. I started planning and opened the shop a few months later. That tool box by the way, I have a photo somewhere, I had painted the NSRA logo on the whole back of it! LOL, the whole back of the bottom box looked like the NSRA logo in the window of my truck.
I was thinking about that when I hand glazed my Gran Sport this past Saturday. When I was working down at that shop I use to Mirror Glaze my trucks lacquer paint every single weekend.
That all came to a halt when I opened the shop that's for sure.
But to get back to your question, one of the things I enjoyed a lot was doing the VWs and Mini trucks for the kids in town. I knew so many of those kids, that was fun, shaving lights and mouldings off just having fun.
It was just a gas restoring gas pumps, I don't care, it was fun for the most part. I did a lot of camper repair too, for the camper shop next door, all their fiberglass repair and paint, all the guys I worked with, the building was full of some pretty cool people. The one with the transmission shop I still see often and we talk about old times.
I haven't done anything show worthy now in fifteen years and I hope to do a little bit of that with my truck. But if not, it will be fun to get back into a real street rod again.