5 October 2012

Valla Park, or, the Drag-ens annual party in Nambucca Heads, has been and gone. Kyren O'Loan took hundreds of pictures, and some are presented for your viewing pleasure on the appropriate page. Click on the green Vicky below to go to the Valla 2012 page.

The Valla Park run, almost midway between Brisbane and Sydney, is a wonderful location for a family holiday, almost any time of the year, but best when the Drag-ens run is on.

We published a link to this site 5 years ago, but a lot has happened then, even in the world of 'traditional' hot rods. While that sounds contradictory, the flathead fraternity is growing, with the venerable boiling water maker now a popular, but expensive, choice. The '34 Victoria to the left has a great example of a superbly detailed supercharged flathead. On the right coast of the US, Dick Spadaro of New York has a great range of the sort of kit that you should consider for a properly optioned flat-motor. The Gallery page has a nice slide show of cars that will appeal to all, whichever form of the hot rod art form floats your boat; http://www.dickspadaro.com/

This another re-visit, but for a totally different reason. You should remember the fire that almost spelt the end of Tom "Stroker" Medley's '40 coupe, but now the story about the restoration has reached a fitting conclusion, and Tom, 92 years young, is back behind the wheel of the forty. A large number of volunteers donated their expertise, and hundreds of others donated money to assist the project. One of the many contributors is Hot Rods Á Custom Stuff, on whose pages these yarns appear. Now Tom is a contented 92 year old hot rod photographer again. The site is slow, but scroll to the bottom of the linked page, then you will see a link to the second page, which has many heart warming shots of the events. http://www.hotrodscustomstuff.com/"

Wired Magazine might seem to be an odd connection with a hot rod web site, but they sometimes have articles that interest those whose interests span the automotive divide. This is another of those yarns about self inflating tyres, so one day it may have a direct connection with many of us; http://www.wired.com/autopia/2012/09/self-inflating-tires/

Peter Jenkins built this ultra black '28 roadster pickup for his wife Lynn, and more than 3 years ago Pete was promised that their pickup would appear on this web site one day. While Pete was patiently waiting, he built a '32 roadster, which will also make it to these pages - one day.

Do you like '40 convertibles? Silly question, everyone does, but not everyone would prefer theirs slightly customized to use '46 convertible flappy bits. Ok, not slightly, as the project we are pointing at started as a coupe! The Route 99 shop in Tulare CA did that, and have the evidence on their web site. There are other projects on the site, and a large number of happy snaps from lots of events, so you could easily spend a few hours visiting. Be sure to click on their logo at the top of the page, rather than the car for sale at the foot; http://highway99hotrods.com

From one extreme to the other; this time we are featuring a high tech computer system that is more widely known in the world of sub-compacts, otherwise known as rice-burners. Haltech make or distribute a great range of adaptable engine management computers, and the computers usually run from 4 to 8 cylinders. One of the problems with OEM computers and looms, such as one might find in your typical wrecking yard, is that once you start changing diff ratios and tyre sizes, the computer appears to become confused. That isn't right of course, but the computer was made to use certain constants, such as final drive ratios and tyre sizes, and if you screw those constants up, the OEM computer won't work be able to adapt. There are quite a lot of after market computer systems, wherein those constants are treated as variables, allowing the owner to make all sorts of changes to the inputs, resulting in better engine management. Haltech is one such system; http://www.haltech.com/ While you are there, take a look at the event coverage of some of the local drag races. The type of car isn't the point, though anyone should admit that a 6 second Mazda is pretty bloody impressive, but have a good look at the photography. It is amongst the best we have seen.

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