Tis the Season…

There really hasn’t been much work done on the drag cars in December. Frankly the work in the shop has been pretty hit and miss too so far this month. In October, my eldest son Dallas and I started talking about a partnership in the Blinds, Shades and Shutters business. I did some research and due diligence on franchises, and made a road trip visit in November, before deciding on Bloomin’ Blinds. We bought a territory up I-45  and about 20 miles east and west of it from North Houston through Huntsville. There will be three main locations: Bloomin’ Blinds of North Houston that also cover Spring, Tomball and the Woodlands; Bloomin’ Blinds of Conroe that also covers Montgomery, Willis and Magnolia; and Bloomin’ Blinds of Huntsville that covers that area.

So I’ve spent a lot of time dealing with my attorney and accountant setting up the LLC, obtaining my EIN and sales tax permit, opening a bank account, and all else pertaining to getting the business running. January 7th Dallas and I will be at the home office training for two weeks, and we open up shop on the 31st of January. 

All of that said we did get some stuff accomplished at the shop. I sold the 81 Imperial I had traded my brother a 67 Newport convertible for back in 85. In 2000 I stripped it, had it painted, and reassembled with a 380hp/360 Crate motor. I also installed an 8.75 Surgrip from a 68 Charger, and a CRT street Strip 904. I never really drove the car enough, so I went through and fixed everything, had my shop rat detail it and I sold it. I picked up the buyer last week at the airport, and he drove to North Carolina.

I have another Imperial, a 64 Convertible. I’ve had it for about 15 years, and hadn’t driven in ten. All of the brakes and brake lines have been replaced, as have all four shocks and tires. The gas tank drained, the carb rebuilt, a new fuel pump; and the points ignition was replaced with MP electronic ignition. The battery, alternator and power steering pump and hose were also replaced. The power window motors were removed to be cleaned and greased, and the power top pumps rebuilt. I set the Shop Rat loose with a tube of metal polish and some microfiber towels to clean all of the interior chrome. He also conditioned the leather. Now its having a new factory exhaust system put on, and then I’ll dye the carpets before having the Shop Rat power buff the paint out.

The Imperial will be one of the few cars in my garage when I die. I’ll be taking it to the lake house when finished.

I’ve had a 67 Marlin for about 15 years. It is the only Marlin that was made on the long Ambassador platform. The 65 and 66 were on the short Rambler American platform and never looked right to me, but I’ve always loved the very rare 67s. I was planning on restoring it, so about 60 hours was spent getting it running and driving right. I was to then strip down and send out to be painted. After a lot of time and money was spent making everything right, I’ve decided I just need to cut bait on some of the cars I really love. I just have too much to do and too little time to do it. As such I’m getting it cleaned up and put on the chopping block.

Another car ready to sell is my Magnum GT. I’ve also had it for about 15 years. I was pretty busy buying stuff back then. Anyway, same deal. Got it running right. Today the Rat took the power buffer to the paint and detailed under the hood. My mechanic bud who works in the shop two days a week, still has to replace the brake booster and a few more detail items before I can list it.

Also ready to sell is my 58 Dodge pickup. My wife wanted family photos taken with it as a prop, so I wasn’t allowed to sell it. Those photos were taken yesterday, so I’m good to sell it. Yes I’ve had it about 15 years. The below are from the photographer’s cell phone. The good ones are a few weeks away.

So I put the Demon that Dallas use to race in a bubble a few years back, and pulled it out to get it race ready. Well the engine wouldn’t turn over and was seized. My bud pulled it and removed a head. It appears that that a pin hole happened in cylinder #5  and seized that piston. I spent the afternoon tearing the engine down as far as I can. I can’t get to one rod bolt on #5 and #8 so I’ve soaked the piston/cylinder in WD40 and hopefully I can free the piston in the morning.

Tomorrow, I’ll have the the shop Rat detail under the hood, the interior, and hit the paint with the buffer. I’ll sell the car as a roller and the engine parts on eBay as I get them cleaned up.

So that about brings me up to date.