Uneditible posts are the newest rage. Repost:
It got to be finally time to replace my driver of 16 years, and I was left with what to do with the big 'ol gray tub. Those who've been hanging with the forum a decade or more know the story of my taking a 51,000 butt ugly white vinyl-top funeral home chaperone and then getting a fellow GRAILer (and aces bodyman) to answer the voices in my head for morphing it into distinctive driver. After a VERY short time driving around it became a fixation to correct issues I considered were keeping it from being a real looker.
I simply had to do something about that ugly white, great on 2 other drivers 20-30 years ago, but pretty tired of it. I hit up Tom (the aforesaid ace) and spent 45 minutes becoming hypnotized by 800 gray paint chips, only to leave and spy the perfect color in a carlot. I called back and shouted, "It's going to be "New Chevy Pickup Truck Dark Metallic Gray!" Well the whole car went like that. Hunting for any possible current design impact from the last century he and I kept adding cues until FTSS was born.
I wanted to clean up the lines so how was I going to lose that ugly vinyl roof? High style in the 70-80's, but not now.
It was a b**** getting that pad off in the winter until discovering some tricks. Going vinyl-delete came with patching 2 dozen holes and surgery on roof seam scars.
Tom, - "No problem."
I didn't like the dated emblems.
Tom; - "Ok, gone. Next?"
Who does hood ornaments anymore?
And chrome bumpers? And worse, the cheesy bottom chrome. We're going mono-color everything.
"Check. What else?"
How do we make steel bumpers look like molded fascias?
"Easy, chins. You done Bob?"
It turned out better than I ever imagined.
To get the tub to a better stance and to handle decently I stuck on all the suspension from under my SS, which I of course treated with nice new upgrades too. An SSRI and big Aero catback opened up things and made a good excuse for a tune - by Anthony. One of the notable mech. upgrades was swapping to rear discs.
Mission accomplished. Cadys already have great radios for any mere mortal, and the ride was heaven around the city and especially for 8-hour weekly commutes. With Escalade badges I've recounted often enough here how gratifying it was to have hi buck Euro-trash sedans and the-then-brand-new 'Arts & Science' Cadys constantly dogging my butt wondering what the hell is a FTSS? Yes, life was good.
Fast forward way longer than I've ever maintained fidelity with just one driver, and I was telling the wife, "Wife, I'm getting something new." I was leaning to either an STS-V or an XLR-V, but it would have to be something I could be happy with for the next 15 years. That sorta dropped the compact roadster out of consideration. Anyway, I was more worried about what to do with the gray car. The paint was still as sparkly as when done a decade and a half earlier, and at 180,XXX miles the sum of the parts didn't add up to spectacular resale, especially considering the car is only going to draw a peculiar niche of interest. I did say peculiar. Well, I could strip it out for the goodies, but then they would only be useful on another tri-9 tub. And the worst part is the great body, paint and visual effects would get lost in the process in some dam junkyard and my neat car would be no more. I've gotten repeat offers over the years by this Tom character to buy it if I was ever to sell. But you know that didn't set well with me since it seemed like selling to family. I was really depressed with no good out. I can't keep it. Can't strip it. Won't sell it. Only one option left.
I have to give it to Tom! BRILLIANT! I used a club lunch meeting to set the snare. Made sure his better 7/8 and 2 neato kids would be there with him. A genuinely unsavory lot to contend with for sure:
brief snip of the handoff:
True as everyone says, it couldn't be going to a better home and nicer guy to put with the rest of his stable. He'll be the one to bring it back to pristine condition. It's got good bones and I'm looking forward to seeing what he does to ratchet things up even more beyond our original vision.
Btw, along the lines of "now for something completely different" here's my 'new' driver for the next 15-20 years. It's true when you don't learn from the past you're bound to repeat it. It's a '96 and another 52,XXX miler, this time from Arizona. And yes, there's big changes planned for its future.