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The0retical Dork
8/28/15 11:18 p.m.

It's sooooo pretty. I want touch it.

NOT A TA HalfDork
8/28/15 11:23 p.m.

One day a young man came to my bicycle store wanting spokes to rebuild wheels and asking how much it cost to true wheels. Bought spokes and went outside, sat on a curb and started installing the spokes in a rim. We were all busy working and kept walking past the young man as we went back and forth between the two buildings where the curb was he sat upon. After a while he took the spokes out and started again, after seeing him repeat the process a more couple times over a couple hour time span I stopped and offered some tips on how they should be laced. He spent most of an afternoon on the curb but was determined and eventually got them ready to be trued and left them. Seeing his determination, persistence, and calm attitude during adversity I hired him.

Months later, a man pulls into the same parking lot in front of the store in a very clean, cool looking, early 60's Ranchero with a nice looking modified front end treatment, aftermarket wheels, and racing stripes up over the hood. As I proclaim "cool car" the young man I'd hired says "That's my dad"(never mentioned his dad was a car guy). So I go talk to dad and tell him the son's been a very good employee and I'm glad I'd hired him. We start talking cars and somehow got on the subject of a bumper smoothing job I'd wanted. The plan was to have the bumper brackets welded to the bumper, shave the domed bolt heads, fill the jack slots, and rechrome. Dad tells me he works at a shop where they have metal guys good enough to do that kind of thing and gives me a price. Price seems fine to me so I give him a spare bumper I had for the project and about a week later I get my bumper back. It's probably been 15 years since then and the bumper still looks great.

The young mans name I hired was Craig Cronin just like his dads who also happened to be the shop manager at Automotive Restorations. I'm gonna go out on a limb and say I'm probably one of a very few or the only active member on this forum that's had work done there. Woody, if you go there again and happen to see Craig tell him I'm still alive and well in FL.

gearheadmb Reader
8/29/15 6:36 a.m.

In reply to erohslc:

Sometimes you just have to appreciate craftsmanship. And thats good craftsmanship.

Woody MegaDork
8/29/15 7:44 a.m.
NOT A TA wrote: Woody, if you go there again and happen to see Craig tell him I'm still alive and well in FL.

Will do. I have a bunch of other photos from the night, but I haven't sorted through them yet. I'll put them into their own thread when I get a chance.

erohslc Dork
8/29/15 11:36 a.m.
gearheadmb wrote: In reply to erohslc: Sometimes you just have to appreciate craftsmanship. And thats good craftsmanship.

I agree, it's fabulous craftsmanship.
I only question the subject, not the execution.

erohslc Dork
8/29/15 11:50 a.m.
Curmudgeon wrote: Man. Impressive work. If aluminum is such a poor thing to make cars from, wonder why Ford just invested millions in changing the body of their best selling vehicle over to such a crappy material? Why did Honda invest millions in making the frames for their best selling off road bike (the CR250) in a twin spar aluminum design? Why did Yamaha start making their WR and YZ frames from aluminum? Lots of poor decision making going on there. The Corvette was originally made in fiberglass because it would have been exceptionally difficult (i.e. expensive) to make the stamp dies for the swoopy lines. It became tradition and yes it does allow quick and reasonably inexpensive restylings. Modern hydroforming techniques could probably do it in sheet steel or aluminum now, but what would be the point?

I never said Aluminum isn't a great metal to make cars out of. I never said this wasn't top notch impressive work. Are you familiar with 'Automotive Design and Production'?
It's an industry publication that delves deeply into all kinds of OEM issues, including materials.
But this car has noting to do with any of that.
Aluminum was not chosen for engineering reasons, but as an artistic choice.

I'm saying it's too bad tall that all skill and effort and expertise was not lavished on something better than reproducing a Corvette body in Aluminum.

ronbros9 New Reader
8/29/15 4:48 p.m.

OH! you dont like Corvettes,HMM.

erohslc Dork
8/29/15 6:18 p.m.

I like them just fine thanks.
One thing I especially appreciate is the GM production engineering that has gone into creating the Corvette body.
Do you really think it's all a happy accident, made by some guys in breather masks and bunny suits with fiberglass chopper guns hand spraying polyester mix into molds?
I'm also watching Ford's foray into aluminum pickup bodies with interest.
Corporate OEM's like Ford don't gamble Billions of dollars making major process changes like that unless they have worked out all the angles to the last decimal point.
Do you seriously think they are building these trucks with skilled artisans hammering sheet metal over wooden bucks?

Current 'commercial wars' from GM (really, a gorilla and a guy choosing Al vs Steel cages?) mean that they have drawn blood in the marketplace.

'Lightweighting' is the new frontier, and it encompases the entire product and process.

Steel is far from dead, they are figuring out how to use new alloys and processes to remain competitive and cost effective.
It will suck to be an auto repair shop in the future, but oh well.

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