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.

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Well, it's spring and it is now busy time. Last weekend I was able to bring home my chopped Astro van. Mike has been nice enough to keep it for me since I acquired the Flying Eagle. This is the first time these two vans have been together, both are national Best of Show winners... cool! . Vance has been buggin' me to redo the chop. He wants to suicide the side door and redo the rear body work that is showing some stress cracks, and of course a new paint scheme. I have to admit that I like the idea,but first..........Yesterday I worked on 3 different motorcycles and today I did a chevy HHR. ...... With the weather warming up It will be time to go to Daytona for the spring show. Gona go see Jim Bag. Maybe hit the Holiday House,and Hampton's for some chicken. Before I leave we were to get the tandem van stripped and primered. That has been slowed down by having to sand all the old paint off instead of using a chemical stripper. The plan is to have it ready by the time I get home.. Had to get the van to the shop before I could bring the chop home.
Here we go Off to Sam's shop. First thing was to start taking apart anything that would get in the way. Lights. bumper ,grill,anything that wasnt to get painted. We were able to squeeze it into the shop. This thing is as long as 2 vans. The van has 2 paint jobs on it and we wanted to to strip it with a chemical striper,but we found most of the van has bondo in it and we didn't want to have to redo all the body work. so its going to have to be sanded of with blocks.MAN what a job that is going to be.. The new scheme has been taking shape and has grown quite a bit since I got the van here and have been able to study on it. Sam and I have brainstormed it and it is going to be a knockout

When I get back from Florida, we will be going gangbusters, to get this done. The target date is the Van Nationals in July. Stay tuned to see if we make it.!!

Monday, March 16, 2009

whats happin'in now!

The only problem with the coming of spring is the car kustom business gets busy.. not that I'm complaining,mind you , but this time I've obligated myself to some big projects. The Tandem van will be a huge part of the next few months. This past weekend Vance came over and wanted to start the making of a mold to copy the astro hood that I made for my van. He wants one for his van.

We laid up several layers of resin and cloth working out the bubbles and extra resin to make a real strong structure, after it set we pulled it apart. We added a little extra to the back to give the hood a cowl induction look. looks pretty good for a couple rookies, lol
This is the finished mold. We're going to use the interior structure also,so we can use the stock mounting plates and latch.. hopefully we'll be able to do this ,this weekend. Last week we got the steering worked out on the pedal car. Finished gluing all the parts togeather,now the only thing left is the drive pedal cranks and well be motivatin'.
I also have a couple paint projects to do. One is another can for a good customer. Another finky with flames, on a green candy base. so far so good..... if you didn't know , you can click on any picture and make it bigger.... more later. Coop

Thursday, March 5, 2009

LAS VEGAS AND Back. pt.2

It was Sunday morning and It was time to head for home. I was to bring home tom's van so I could put a new paint job on it.. the van has a new engine in it and I was a little apprehensive but after a short test drive I was ready to go. As they say, life is an adventure, enjoy it!
This is one radical looking van,this should be fun! Left Vegas and headed north. Rt. 15 goes along the north edge of the Grand Canyon region. For a guy that has lived in Ohio for 50 some years this is a treat to see this kind of scenery. I love this. Gorgeous! Then crossing into Utah, came to the town of St. George. Guess what I found!! One last one. It has to last till December?AAAHHHH! Then it was on to Manti, Utah. Needed to see Ilene, get some more Rat Fink stuff, and some rest. Hung out Monday, Went north to Ephram,to have lunch and a milkshake. The local car lot had the coolest little truck..I stand and look at this and see it with the bed off and boxing in the back.. It would be the cutest little van. These are now street legal in Utah. Wonder if the state of Ohio is that smart.. maybe I'll make it my next work van. It has a 3 cylinder engine and gets over 50 MPG.... well..... Tuesday The weather was great. Got loaded and on the road early.This may be the only time these vans are together..
I love this kind of scenery. This part was a joy.
All along the way I was getting more attention for the van . Pictures and waves for 2000 miles.
Crossed into Colorado and the mountains got bigger and even more impressive.
I want to take this train ride..... Roger??? Then the road goes through the canyon where the road and the river are literally on top of each other.. Absolutely fabulous!

Near Vail I stopped for gas and food then when I tried to start the van.... FLOODED. "Then a little trick Dale taught me. On a fuel injected engine , to clear a flood, disconnect the plug that powers the injectors. Crank the engine till it starts. Then plug it the injectors. Worked like a charm. Total time, 7 minutes. Back on the road again.
This is the huge tunnel at the summit..very cool Then through Denver and across the plains and home.. no problem. Can't wait to do it again... now it's time to work on the van. stay tuned gang for updates.. for now......sleep.

Sunday, March 1, 2009


Seems like all I have done this year is go to the west coast. Being a member of the National Truck-in board, I am required to attend the annual winter council meeting. This years meeting was in Las Vegas. So last week I was again out west.While there I was to pick up a van that a vanner friend of mine has been wanting me to paint. more on that later. Arrived mid week and a number of vanners were already there. Since a lot of them had never been to Vegas I got elected to show them around. Vegas being one of my favorite towns, I am familiar with how to get around thanks to my buddy Magoo. Speaking of the devil, I hooked up with him first and had lunch with him at what has become a favorite Mexican restaurant. Ended up back at the hotel and Tom was there with the van. After we talked about what I should do with it, I hooked up with several friends and went to see some sights around vegas..and of course we had to eat......
We went downtown to see the Fremont experience.
The Bellagio fountains,and several others. Thursday was meeting day for the board. We were at it early, the best part of the day was the lunch break...we were only a block from,, you guessed it, To top that off ,next door is one of two company stores, that sell all kinds of In-n-Out stuff. Woohoo!!..

Now THATS what I call a double double!! Look!, fat guy sizes. Kenny this red one is yours! That night several of us went to see the Cirque du Soleil show,"Love", based on the music of the Beatles. Most excellent. I love the Cirque du Soleil shows... I've seen 7 different ones now. If you can , go see one. Definitely worth the effort. At the next meeting on Friday, Howard and I gave a seminar on van judging and classification. Had several nice vans on hand to use as Guinea pigs. Sat. nite was just to enjoy , hang with friends, & see some more sights. Oh ,and just one more ............