Tag Archives: hobby

Re: Let’s Have a Talk – Do You

10 Feb

Recently on The Chronicles I read a really interesting article about the state of affairs in the scene, as far as cars getting magazine coverage and the behavior of their owners. Roja’s Blog also touched on this as well with his own take. I figured I’d chime in with my feelings as well, since this is something we talk about at the shop all the time with our customers and amongst ourselves.

The process of building a project car is like any other major step you take in your life. It’s filled with ups and downs, with joy and despair, and it costs a boatload of money. But you always have to check yourself as to your motivation. The motivation should always be your passion for the car and the hobby in general. Not what magazine you can get into. Not what internet high fives you’ll get. Not what girls you think you can pull after it’s done. It’s got to be about you. When you stop doing you, and starting doing it for any other reason, you lose. You become an also-ran that at the end of the day, no one pays much attention to. Sure, you might get labelled an e-baller by bouncing from one project car to another. Or by guys who are impressed by what parts you got. But those people aren’t you’re friends, and they don’t really care about what you’re doing. They aren’t helping you at 1 AM to finish an install for that event the next day; they aren’t working those overtime hours to pay for that part you covet. They are just jumping on the bandwagon, hoping to be part of something they perceive to be cool. The irony is, the bandwagon ain’t cool. What is cool is you getting out of the project what you put in. It’s you enjoying the fruits of your labor by indulging in a hobby that you enjoy and are passionate about. You gotta love it, and if you put your best into it, you’ll get the best out of it.

We used to do the show thing for a few years with our own cars and customer cars. Until it dawned on me one day – I am not having fun anymore. Hanging out with my friends and customers was cool, talking to random people I’d meet about my car or the shop was cool…but standing around for 10 hours in the sun waiting to talk to some jadrool about my car who didn’t even understand what he was looking at, and paying $50 for that privilege, had somehow lost it’s appeal. So I stopped taking my car to these events. I’d still go and show support for our customers who like the show scene, hang out for a bit, swap stories, check out the cars. But having my car judged just didn’t register high on my importance list anymore. Instead, I re-discovered doing what I should had done with all my previous projects – just enjoying the car. It was like re-discovering the reason I got into cars in the first place. Ultimately, I care about enjoying the car I built for myself. I care that it represents my hard work, and the help of my friends and colleagues. I care that my car has turned out exactly how I wanted it to. I don’t care of it gets in a magazine. I care instead about waking up early on a weekend morning and just driving out east just to enjoy the scenary. Taking the car home with me from work just to wake up a bit earlier than normal so I can take the long way to the shop the following day. Meeting up with a bunch of fellow enthusiasts and friends over dinner and just bs’ing. Hobbies need to be fun. While I am very fortunate to have my hobby also be my career, having a built Z is not a necessity in life. When it stops being fun and your motivation starts being for outside reasons, it’s time to re-evaluate things.

When we attended our first ZDayz a few years ago, I had more fun at a car event than I had in a long time. Even though my car had some gremlins that weekend, and I didn’t even get to drive it on half the roads I wanted to, it was just awesome doing a road trip with Kwame, listening to good music, and then meeting up with friends, customers, and shops we deal with all year and just hanging out. I am already planning on things for a ZDayz trip this year. We’ve got so many local customers and friends cars that are all on schedule to be completed in the coming months, that I think this is going to be one of the best spring/summer seasons in a long time. Ultimately, that’s what is should be all about. Hanging with friends, and sharing this great hobby together.

So that’s my take on it – you gotta just have fun with the car. Build it for you, and you’ll never go wrong. A special thank you to the above mentioned blogs for getting me thinking again about this topic!

Rare Stuff Part 3

21 Dec

Holy sh*t factor in full effect for this one!  A genuine Ferrari F40 LM Edition.  Ferrari built exactly 19 of these…ever!  Of those 19, only 2 were made to the specs of this particular one.  These were made as a joint venture between the Maranello factory and Charles Pozzi SA, a Ferrari importer in France at the famous Michelotto Center, that had previously been responsible for several well known, competition level Ferrari’s.  This particular model was raced in the US in 1990 by several well known drivers of the day, and had a few podium finishes as well. 

Features include:  titanium connecting rods and 9:1 compression ratio pistons giving its twin turbocharged, intercooled engine a breathtaking 850 horsepower at 7,500 rpm. That translates into a top speed of 367 km per hour (228 mph).   Yours for only P.O.R.  P.O.R. is an achronym for the famous saying, “If you have to ask, you can’t afford it”!

This is the stuff I absolutely love – the truly rare vehicles.    My office at home (hell, my home in general!) is filled with posters, pictures, and memorabilia of cars and races that get me excited.  Stuff like the above F40 LM is what made me fall in love with cars when I was a toddler, and why I love the hobby today, and will love it till the day I die.   What’s more, I find it interesting,  how ahead of it’s time a car like this was.  If you posted a car today on any popular message board with titanium connecting rods, full carbon body, and 850 hp at 7500 rpm  , you would find guys oohing and ahhing for weeks.  Here we have a car that did it 19 years ago.  Not only that, but it still looks fresh, unique, and special today.  Sure, I understand that the cars we’re playing around with today didn’t start life as quarter million dollar dream machines, nor do we have hundreds upon hundreds of thousands of dollars available to mod them, but so what.  The forsight, dedication, and intelligence that it took to produce this machine then, is the same that drives us today.   I can’t help but think that the minds who conceived, built, and raced a car like the ones I posted today, are exactly like you and I.  They have a true passion for cars, that runs deep.  These are guys who built it because they could, and because deep down inside, they wanted the challenge.  They didn’t build it to brag to their friends about it – they built it because that is what they were put on the earth to do.  From the ownership perspective, I suspect alot of those who can afford to consider a car like these also has alot in common with those who read this blog.  They want to own something that transcends just being a car.  To them, and me, and hopefully to you,  something like this F40 LM is truly a work of art.  The man hours that went into R&D, production and assembly of the parts that make these even more special than a “standard” F40 is mind blowing to me.  That’s what attracted me to the car hobby all those years ago, and what continues to inspire me today.  I look at a car like this, and however briefly sad I might be that I can’t afford even one of the carbon body panels,  the anticipation and and inspiration to spend the winter months with my own projects, making them as good as my talent and wallet will allow is undeniable.

Hopefully you’re like me, and seeing cars like this one, or the Porsche’s and Ferrari’s I posted yesterday and today, is an inspiration to jump in the water with both feet.  Don’t spend the dreary winter wishing you could make your dream car happen – make it happen!