At the recent SEMA Show, our friends at GearWrench were showing off a new Gimbal Ratchet.Â This is a step up from the typical thumb drive ratchets.Â In tights spots the two plane gimbal allows for the ratchet to fit securely on the fastener and then pivot or lean the ratchet to get the most secure grip on the tool and then spin on or off the fastener.Â Think of a gyroscope and you’ll get the idea
This ratchet is great for tight spots and shows someone was thinking at GearWrench.Â The tool comes in either the 1/4″ or 3/8″ drive and would be great for low torque, tight situations.Â It fits great in the hand and is sturdy, but still lightweight.
Pricing and Availability
This ratchet will be coming out in the beginning of 2014 and I figure it’ll price out at around $20.Â Their website even suggests earlier delivery if you need a hint for the holidays!Â Tell us what you think and if it made your wish list.
This past weekend, at the Goodguy’s 16th Southwest Nationals car show held in Scottsdale, Arizona attendees had the chance to see all the Goodguy’s Terrific 12 Award winners displayed together in one space.
This year the Goodguy’s AutoCrosser of the year was determined after Saturdayâ€™s AutoCross Finals Shootout.Â Â All 11 of the other finalists were already on display for Friday and Saturday.Â Some of the Terrific 12 were seen at earlier Goodguy’s events, other car shows and even at the recent SEMA Show.Â But this is the one chance each year to see all the cars at one time.
Goodguy’s Award from Snap On
Adding to the uniqueness of the exhibit, will be each winnerâ€™s custom toolbox from Snap-on. Each winner receives their large toolbox in Scottsdale, wrapped with pictures of their ride to display alongside their car of the year.
The cars are displayed at the Westworld show grounds on the top level of the asphalt.Â There the public can go by and see these cars up close.Â Throughout the show, the owners, builders or their representatives were usually around to answer questions and show off special features.
Goodguy’s had a great show overall with lots of cars and great weather.Â Subscribe to this blog to learn when we write up our coverage of the show.
We contributed an article and some photos about the recent SEMA Show held in Las Vegas, Nevada to our Canadian friends at www.mystarcollectorcar.comÂ
It’s always nice to share ideas, thoughts and car shows with others.Â You can check out the article here.Â The website posts a new article every day and never spams you.Â So check them out if you want a Northern perspective on car shows!Â Frankly sometimes, it is hard to realize that they are writing from Canada.
Take a 2008 Harley Davidson Dyna Street Bob motorcycle, add huge amounts of ingenuity, imagination and innovation and blend with over 3,000 hours of labor and you might end up with this homage to the ever popular 1957 Chevrolet Bel Air.Â This red beauty was seen at the SEMA (Specialty Equipment Marketing Association) show held in Las Vegas, NevadaÂ last week.
57 Chevy Bel Air
The 1957 Chevrolet Bel Air is an iconic look from the 50’s.Â Any enthusiast will easily recognize the front chrome bumper, the bullets on the hood, the swoopy aluminum molding along the sides and the wild fins and rear tail lights of the 57.Â It is ironic that these styling features were only found on the 57 and none of the other Chevy years.Â For the tri-five years, (1955-1957) Chevrolet altered the appearance and styling of their vehicle.Â Try re-tooling a car line now like that every year!
The builder, LUPO Racing, was from France and brought over this interesting takeoff on the iconic ’57 Chevy Bel Â Air.Â The builder/owner used the styling cues from the Chevy “fins” for his rear end and actually utilized the rear tail light to accentuate the rear view.Â The exhaust exits through the rear end’s light housing.Â Originally Chevrolet had thought of using the same idea for their cars, but the exhaust left a residue on the chrome which stopped that concept from going to production.Â Â He also used the “chrome Dagmar’s” Â from the Chevy’s front bumper to help carry off the theme.Â Add in some Chevy emblems and badging and mix up some great imagination, and you end up with one sweet look.Â Famed motorcycle builder Arlen Ness handiwork was even Â used for the engine cover.
This motorcycle parked in front of the SEMA Show, where anybody could walk by and admire the handiwork.Â To top it off, the builder/owner drove it out of the SEMA Show on the Friday night Cruise.Â The bike caught the eye of Hot Rod Magazine, who was at the cruise too.Â Here’s their closeup of the motorcycle.
The bike had been featured in two writes up in bikenet.com previously as well.Â Part One featured the frame and Part Two looked at the rear tail light housing.
You’ve got to admire the craftsmanship of the builder and the expense of carting it over to the states to be seen for one week here in Las Vegas!
This 56 Desoto actually had the clock in the steering wheel .Must have been hell to read if the steering wheel went out of alignment.Â And imagine the difficulty in fixing that car clock when and if it went bad.
One of the hidden â€œgemsâ€ of the SEMA â€“ Specialty Equipment Market Association – week-long festivities this week is the NHRA â€“ National Hot Rod Association â€“ Breakfast.Â Each year NHRA gathers a group of racing celebrities to come together, share some stories, crack some jokes and give the drag racing fans some inside looks at the world of drag racing.
The Voice of NHRA
This yearâ€™s breakfast was entitled â€œThe Voce of NHRAâ€ and featured past announcers Dave McClelland, Bob Frey and Alan Reinhardt with current ESPN/NHRA announcer Dave Rieff being the emcee.Â The first two former announcers were introduced with video montages of their career.Â When Reinhardt came out, they did not have a video of his past works, mainly because he is still announcing at various tracks.Â Later Alan quipped, â€œMy videos wonâ€™t start in black and white.â€
Dave McClelland responded that the younger they are, the balder they are.Â The announcers also shared some jokes about buying a parrot.Â You had to be there!
They NHRA also had a poignant remembrance of Steve Evans, another past announcer, and gave an award to his son, Cameron Evans who runs Red Line Oil.
McClelland told the story how he started his career, when a track announcer â€œfrozeâ€ in front of the crowd.Â When Dave offered to take over, the track owner said, Why not?Â You couldnâ€™t do any worse.â€
When McClelland was commenting on his career which spanned from 1961-2003 with NHRA and even earlier with other tracks, Alan Reinhardt commented â€œMy parents hadnâ€™t even yet met in 1959.â€Â And Dave quipped back, â€œAnd in a perfect world, they never would have!â€
McClelland talked about his career actually racing and commented that he â€œkept his car looking old, just like the driver.â€
Dave Rieff when first assigned as a rookie to interview John Force was worried.Â He was told; donâ€™t worry about it, â€œJohn will interview himself.â€
John Force, the 16 time Funny Car champ, also came out and he was in rare form.Â When he complained about not getting respect, Bob Frey pointed out the overhead sign only listed the three announcers as being present.
Force told the story of how he got stopped in New Mexico and his 18 wheel race hauler was sporting a boat trailer plate.Â Alan Reinhardt had to help loan him a truck to continue his travels back home to California, and while the truck was parked in a California lot it was vandalized with all the windows broken out.Â To which John Force had calmly explained, â€œDonâ€™t worry, we can fix this!â€
Words canâ€™t convey the warmth and true friendships the announcers shared for each other.Â The crowd was in stitches and laughing throughout the event.Â Later McClelland commented that it was the most fun he had in ages.Â And I agree.
Congratulations to the trade school WyoTech that brought out a 1964 Ford F100 that was given a roadster treatment by a band of their students over an eight month period.Â Because half of the school day is spend in classes, away from the machines, that really equates to a four-month frame on build.
The students chopped off the top, making it a roadster.Â One student made the renderings for the “pickup” and all the students worked on various parts of the car from the body work, to even the final trim and upholstery.
It was on display by WyoTech at the SEMA show being held in Las Vegas this week, from November 5-8, 2013.Â Nice job by the students and good to see the future of rodding is in good hands.Â And nice job by the faculty staff doing the training, and inspecting.
Interior view of upholstery job
Driver’s side view
Front end view
Rear end view of Roadster
Hood down view
The truck received continuous stares, admiring glances and positive comments.
This yearâ€™s SEMA Awards for the top trending vehicle models in four categories were announced on Tuesday November 5, 2013 at the SEMA Show in Las Vegas. The Ford Mustang was named Hottest Car, the Scion FR-S took the Hottest Sport Compact honors, the Ford F-Series won Hottest Truck and the Jeep Wrangler received the Hottest 4×4-SUV award.
I was pulling for the Chevy Silverado and the Corvette Stingray, so I guess I struck out; there but no complaints with the Scion FR-S and Jeep Wrangler winning.
Dare to be Different
One of the fun parts of SEMA, is the over the top, just because I can, attitude of many of the cars.Â Enough said
At the worldâ€™s largest convention of automotive aftermarket parts and accessories, the SEMA Show â€“Specialty Equipment Market Association â€“ one of the highlights is the Chevrolet display; and the chance for a sneak preview at the Media Party held on Monday night before SEMA opens.
Besides catching up with various executives and seeing some great cars, Chevrolet brings in a few celebrities to spice up the night.Â Fortunately these celebrities have straight connections to the cars featured at this press event.
This year NASCAR racers Ricky Carmichael (and AMA racer and X Games champ) and Jeff Gordon were there to delight the crowds. Some of the featured cars were:
Ricky Carmichael’s Chevy All-Activity Sonic concept
The All-Activity Sonic concept was introduced by Carmichael and had a cold air induction, a lowered suspension and enhanced braking.Spark EV Tech Performance concept
Chevy Spark EV Tech Performance concept
Chevy â€œpowered upâ€ this all-electric tire smoking mini-car, the Spark, with an instant on 400 lb-ft of torque â€“http://route66pubco.com/wp-admin/post-new.php more than the classic 1969 Camaro SS muscle car with a 350 V-8 â€“ for exhilarating acceleration. It can go from 0 to 60 mph in only 7.5 seconds.
2014 Chevy COPO
It seems that Chevrolet always has a new version of the legendary COPO drag cars for SEMA, and they didnâ€™t disappoint this year with a light blue version.Â Very well designed and ready for the drag strip as is.Â This year will feature new front and rear fascia and be limited to the fabled 69 cars.
Gran Turismo C7 Corvette Stingray
A flat blue Corvette that will be featured in the latest version of Playstationâ€™s Gran Turismo was promoted.Â All week at the Chevy display show goers will be able to play an advanced version of the game.
Restored 1978 pick up
This truck was a restored beauty and featured a new crate engine package from Chevy.Â The E ROD 5.3 L package is a plug and play emissions compliant powertrain.
Jeff Gordonâ€™s SS
His SS came with a red satin (flat) finish was an awesome car with subtle power touches.Â A LS3 engine and a 6 speed automatic transmission were the power plant for the SS.
2014 Camaro Z28
The road worthy Z/28 in all black was released at this event.Â Featuring Brembo brakes, less weight and a LS7 engine helps make this track car a worthy competitor and lives up to its namesake.
Three cars from the 2014 Transformer movie were on hand to be admired; a new Bumble Bee Camaro, a Sonic and bright Green Corvette Stingray
Good times, good cars, good people.Â SEMA cranks up in full power mode in a few hour son Tuesday November 5th.Â More details at Chevy Performance.
SEMA – the Specialty Equipment Market Association – show starts officially on Tuesday November 5, 2013 in Las Vegas.Â Car Nirvana is spread over 2 million square feet of interior space and even more cars are positioned outside.Â I figured if Hot Rod Magazine can prediction what the SEMA 2013 will highlight, I can predict too.
Predictions for SEMA
I’ll be more modest and only give you five trends to be spotted at SEMA this year.
Car of the Year – Has to be the Corvette Stingray.Â This is the after-market convention after all and there has been no more pent-up demand, than seeing the Corvette C7 hit the streets.
Flat is back.Â We’ve seen variations of flat paint jobs in the past, and that trend is going to explode.Â Both from the mainstream manufacturers but also the specialty shops.Â And contrary to some opinions, it takes as much prep work on a car body to spray it flat as it does for the shiny clear coats.
Step up the transmissions.Â Used to be standard to row through four speeds, but not that Detroit is issuing out sheet metal with 7 speed transmissions to help up the EPA gas mileage, so will the aftermarket.
Truck of the year?Â Got to be the Chevrolet Silverado.Â Demand is back up for trucks, that’s where the money is and that’s where General Motors has hit a home run.Â It might be apolitical to have two winners from the same manufacturer, but the Silverado deserves it!
Retro is back with a passion.Â Clothing, accessories, and cars will all be showing an old fashioned look.Â Woodies, rat rods, salt wagons will all be highly visible.
Stayed tuned and we’ll see how many of these predictions you might agree with after Friday and the show wraps up.
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