Vanning is a compulsion, an obsession, an occupation, an affliction, a fascination, a fate. It is not a hobby. Those who do it, must. Those who don't, think it's a waste of time. For me it is a calling.

Sunday, March 16, 2008

Went out to the garage today and continued to work on the overhead console in the Flying Eagle. I added a dvd player and want to install a dock for the sirius radio.
Trying to do a sanitary job on the wiring. Nothing worse than trying to find wires in a big mess of spaghetti.
Next I need to install the oil filter relocation kit. Another of Fords bright ideas was to mount the oil filter on the side of the block just above the cross member. To take it off you have to drain the oil all over the cross member. what a mess. Vance got me a relocation kit for Christmas so I can mount the filter on the side of the frame rail. Much easier. The next thing is to paint the engine compartment. Something I didn't have time to do when I was putting it together ,but I have to make time to do it now. Haven't decided weather to paint it gloss black or a bright color. Hmmm I'll have to study on that one. Went to mikes to do a bike for Sluggo before I take off for Florida .

Time to get ready to go to Florida. I do a show every spring in Daytona at the speedway

Here I am setting up my humble booth at the Daytona speedway. Spent many an hour here. Hey, wheres the snow??? nyk nyk nyk.

Friday, March 14, 2008


believe it or not I just plowed this
the last week has been a doozy . Started out with a blizzard and ended up warm and busy. Did a 1910 Harley repro. This is a first for me. No I didnt do the origional. Very cool bike. Then the Chevy with the Fink. Sams bustin' my chops this week. No wonder my back hurts Another fink unleashed on the world!

Another flame job tomorrow. I'm wanting to get to the garage this weekend but the yard is full of water. 15 inches of snow leaves a mess when it melts in 3 days. Got the art done for the clubs van-in. With the warm weather I looking forward to getting the vans out. COME ON SPRING!!!!!!

Thursday, March 6, 2008

the mails here ,the mails here !!!!

Today the UPS man pulls in the drive and leaves this huge box. Inside I find the long awaited stained glass pieces for the Flying Eagle 2. A few years ago while working the Back to the Fifties car show in Minnesoooota , I met Chris Anderson ,He asked if I minded if he hung around , watched and learned. Well evidently he learned something and has come back to see me every year since. Come to find out he has several artistic skills ,including stained glass. 2 years ago he showed up with a fabulous stained glass Rat Fink and presented it to me.
To say the least I was moved. Then when I needed the stained glass tail lights and window for the interior door replaced on the Eagle, he was the one I wanted to make them. Today they arrived!!!!! What a great job, I cant wait to get them installed in the Eagle. THANKS CHRIS...U DA MAN! you notice I found the rear harpoon bumper...

I also came across this photo.Earlier this past summer we were riding through down town Columbus, and we see this building at the corner of Long and High streets. Look closely at the name on the paint cans (click on the pic to make it large) This was somewhat disturbing since I had nothing to do with it. look closely at the bottom of the wall. A car and a van covered with paint. This was quite a cool concept. I still don't have any idea why they picked me. So being the smart ass I can be, I got out my paints and pinstriped the green van and signed it. I think it is still there.

Wednesday, March 5, 2008

Today I did another restoration project for a customer of mine A 1930 ford model A. The model A guys just don't want tape stripes on their cars. The factory stripes were all done by hand and a true restoration has to have hand painted stripes. These can be the more difficult jobs for the striper. Long straight lines are the most challenging.

Model A's have several different variations of stripes. Through the center band ,the bottom raised band, double stripes through the center following the ridge thet goes up behind the windows. Roadsters had even more. 2 and 4 door models were different as were pick-up trucks.

No model A job would be complete without striping the dash. This is the easiest way to do it if your customer will call you while the car is apart, but most that i've done are in the car. A real pain in the ass. Actually the dash is really the gas tank. Since the A's didn't have fuel pumps, they were gravity fed & the tank had to be higher than the engine. As you went down the road, you had as much as 10 gallons of gas in your lap. Nader would have had a field day with that one. Well that one's done . Back to workin' on that can

Tuesday, March 4, 2008


When Von Dutch first laid out a custom free form design most people don't know why he did it. He was working in a shop where they were nosing and decking cars.(removal of hood and trunk chrome) ,as will happen one car had some flaws in the bodywork, the grinder marks showed through. Dutch had an idea. He got one of his dads liners ,loaded some paint and covered a mark. then went to the other side of center and made another line.. this process continued till he created the first center design on a hood. Custom Pinstriping was born to fix bad bodywork The reason I mention this is that I had to do such a job today. Fact is this technique is fast becoming a specialty of mine. I cant tell you how many times I've been approached to "fix" a screw up in a paint job. Bug and rock chips to flaws in a new paint job. There is no such thing as a perfect paint job. The best painter has problems. So the alternative to a repaint is a cover of some kind. Enter the pinstriper. I have gotten pretty good at designing stripes to cover flaws. Actually this is a skill that you should work on if you want to be a well rounded striper. It isn't as easy as you may think. The idea is to stripe over the flaw and have it look like it belongs there. I learned something from Dutch that I have followed since I started. His basic philosophy is that a car has a basic shape that has forward motion. A vehicle looks like it is moving even when it sits still. They have horizontal lines that flow from front to back. Pinstriping should complement these shapes not work against them. A stripe design should have a front to rear flow. you don't put a vertical design in the center of the drivers door do you? Stripes should accent the lines of a vehicle , not overwhelm them. you don't want people to see only the stripes. so covering flaws can present unique problems. Scratches and flaws are usually in difficult places to work stripes onto . A while ago i saw Ed Roths beatnick bandit 2 and there was a fly painted on top of the front fender. it looked cool. Ed had a thing about flys. It was hiding a place where a wrench got dropped on it. not a unique solution, many a bug has covered a chip. but imagination is the key. Here are the bike parts I did today

above: flaw around gauge insert and on tail edge of fender. below after

For fun I then went home and worked on this can that is destined for the Detroit Auto-Rama pinstripers jamboree ,this coming weekend. I need a life.

Saturday, March 1, 2008

Since my last post, Ive been busy catchin' up on the work that got left behind. I've done several things for Sam and others.

yesterday did a dragster for Tony of T&C body shop in Columbus. and I've had to work on the van twice this last week also. thanks Vance! Been doin some fink art for a couple projects I'm doing for Ilene Roth also. Keep an eye out for that. Got to get it approved first. Got a show in daytona the end of march I'll be doing ,need to get ready for that. Its going to be a busy month. check out some of the work I've been doing

Sam hard at work.

Here we go again the shocks on the van were shot! Vance helped me get them off. Actually it was a ploy to get me to stripe on his new toolbox. it worked, I'll let him crawl around on the ground. Last week the belt tension pully went bad, thank god it didn't go on my way home from Florida. Thanks again to mike.

This is the finky for the boys tool box. Hey kenny do the teeth pass???