Monday, September 14, 2015

This Place is a Barn, You'll Never Fill It.

(A million internet points to whoever gets the reference in the title...)

Libertyman sent in this awesome barn find a while ago, and while clearing out my e-mail I came across it.

Texas Time Capsule: Five pre-war automobiles discovered in barn
Barn find. Arguably the most powerful, attention-grabbing two syllables in the classic car universe.

“It’s the Holy Grail for a car guy,” said Antonio Brunet, chairman and founder of Motostalgia Auctions in Austin, Texas. “Opening the doors, seeing the cars covered in dust, untouched for years … It’s like you’re in a time machine.”
And yes, they're still out there. Like this:

1938 Cadillac Series 90 Limousine (picture from link).

I've got a buddy back in MA who has a Caddy very much like that one. His wasn't a barn find; rather, it was a case of being in the right place at the right time. He's a true car nut - as in, he makes me look like a piker - as well as being a Ford Master Mechanic, so not only does he talk the talk, he walks the walk. This is a guy who bought his first car in 1986, a new Ford F-150, and stopped driving it in 2006, when his son was born and the truck (a regular cab) wasn't big enough for him and his three kids.

He currently owns a 1959 Plymouth Belvedere made up to look like the Gran Fury from "Christine" as well as a 1969 Ford Torino GT in original condition. His dad - where he gets the car nut bug from - has the Cadillac limo and a 1932 Ford coupe with a Chevy V8 that can pull wheelies in second gear. Getting together with my buddy is always a treat - one time, he called me up to have me come over to look at a NASCAR racing car that he was working on. I forget what the exact specs were, but something like 800 horsepower firing up in a garage is something you remember.

Oh, and his daily driver is a 1999 F-150 with a supercharger that he has literally hand-made parts for to keep it running - and it still looks new.

Cars, like guns, are a time machine. You look at a car from the 1950s, it reflects the time period. Acres of chrome, a hood you could land a helicopter on, tail fins... It defines the American post-war era. In the turbulent 1960s, cars got more squared away, less flashy. Muscle cars sprang to life at the height of the Vietnam war, almost as if we were saying, well, we might not be the best at projecting force in the face of a nebulous Cold War, but damn we can make fast cars. As the 1970s rolled on and gas became scarce, our cars got comically smaller and crappier, a trend that continued into the 1980s.

The difference, of course, is that you can pick up a 1911 from post-WWI and shoot it all day long without worrying about it breaking. You can carry a Smith & Wesson snubnose revolver from the 1960s all day, every day, and know that it will work every single time. Not to mention that you can own a hundred historical firearms, even rifles, and store them in a corner of your basement. Cars, well, even if you can afford them, space gets limited pretty quick...

That doesn't mean I wouldn't move heaven and earth to get my grandfather's 1936 Plymouth Business Coupe back, though...

That is all.


Ygolonac said...

The Blues Brothers, obviously. :V

This message posted from 1060 West Addison.

New Jovian Thunderbolt said...

Tonite is Ladies Night at the Palace Hotel Ballroom.

libertyman said...

I found it, your version is somewhat bowdlerized, but I remember it now.

Pick up the book "The Cobra in the Barn" for some more good finds.

Chris in TX said...

Nice place. Built in the '40's. On Lake Wazzapamani.

Old NFO said...

Heh, good one, and yes, there ARE those finds/vehicles out there!

Murphy's Law said...

Late to the party this time, but caught the reference. Cue Cab Calloway for another round of "Minnie the Moocher".

PS--Blogshoot Oct 24th!

1911A1 said...

Orange whip? Who wants an orange whip?

Ross said...

Heh. I like your description of the hoods. I used to describe my 66 Dodge Monaco station wagon as being big enough to launch and recover F15s on.