Tag Archives: AZ

PRS4 from Praxair Cuts to the Chase at Barrett Jackson

Besides 1,850 classic cars being auctioned off at the Barrett-Jackson Car Auction, there are a variety of vendors showing their wares. Beyond artwork, mattresses and outdoor furniture, one of the most intriguing displays was the Praxair’s Lancer PRS4 Automated CNC plasma cutter.

Lancer PRS4

This entry level plasma cutter is a ferrous metal cutting machine. At an initial price point of under $25,000 this device can allow a small business owner to enter the custom metal work industry.  Using existing templates or designing their own from line drawings or sketches, a user can quickly get to work, cutting up to 7/8” steel plate.Praxair Plasma Cutter Sparking

At the show the plasma table was using compressed air and electricity to cut out everything and anything. Besides hearts and ghouls, they were cutting out cars and animals as well. They even were up to the challenge and made a custom Corvette cut out.Praxair Plasma Cutter Corvette

PRS4

Chris Vihnanek, Senior Director at Praxair, explained that his device had several advantages over a water jet. Besides price point, the water jet while versatile can’t cut at the speed of the plasma cutter and the lack of the water jet abrasive allowed for a better control of the subject metal. Users can run with one of two plasma systems  Hypertherm or Thermal Dynamics- and the welding table starts at a pre-fabbed 4′ x 4′. The PRS4 can cut up to an astounding 500 inches a minute.

Given the crowds surrounding the machine, there were tons of interest in this machine. So why is Praxair offering a device that uses some consumables but no specialized gasses?  Well it is a plasma cutter and they hope companies will follow along up the product chain where argon or oxygen gas would be needed and consumed. Smart marketing with a nice hook.Praxair Plasma Cutter Finished Product

They’ll cut through about $7,000 worth of metal as they cut up all sorts of images promoting the PRS4 and other CNC machines.  So if a bidder can’t buy a car, maybe they’ll end up with a car cut out?

What would you use a CNC machine for?

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ISM Raceway Speeds Fans to a New High

The ISM Raceway hosted the NASCAR trio of races this past weekend and the premiere turned out to be all that the owners had been predicting. The massive reconstruction took two years but left the historic dogleg mile track intact. The track in Avondale, Arizona was previously known as Phoenix International Raceway (PIR).ISM Raceway Overall View 2

ISM Infield

By shifting the stands counter clockwise they put the fans into the afternoon shade, offered wide stadium seats, a better view of the new finish line and overall the bar was raised for track amenities.

ISM Raceway Fan Access

If the fans opted for the infield admission ticket at ISM Raceway , they had a close up view of the racers’ garage areas plus they could see the driver’s meeting and the walkway leading to it. They could easily walk through an underground tunnel to get to the infield throughout the race day.ISM Raceway Garage

The victory lane area has a sunken pit area where lucky fans who stake out an early spot can enjoy all the victorious festivities. Plus in the infield were seats and shade alongside three sites serving food and “adult” beverages. To maneuver around, nine elevators were added along with four escalators.ISM Raceway Victory Lane

ISM Raceway

Fans could get views never before seen, literally standing within feet of a hard working garage crew. Plus over 400 monitors kept fans up to date on the action. Plenty of space remained in the midway for souvenir purchases and the parking was plentiful and easy to get to.ISM Raceway Garage Area

Wi-Fi (free of course) was available throughout the site with no dead zones. Of course the facility offers 51 upgraded suites plus three suites that overlooked the actual NASCAR garage. All in all getting this project done, without interrupting the racing venue’s schedule, was quite an accomplishment. This two year project cost over $175 million and involved no tax dollars! Quite an accomplishment.

@2018 Route 66 PubCo

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Hero Cards Display Craftsmanship and Ingenuity

It is funny how something as trivial as a hero card display can become a functional expression of the craftsmen involved. Hero cards are those 8X11 color shots of drivers, or their cars, passed out at NASCAR races, drag racing pits and at fan appreciation events. Even if you don’t get them autographed, it allows a connection between the fan and the racing team.

At the recent SEMA Show in Las Vegas, lots of hero cards were signed by celebrities including Brittany and Ashley Force.Hero Card Signing with Force Sisters

NASCAR Hero Cards

At the latest NASCAR race at ISM Raceway in Avondale, (Phoenix area) Arizona all the race teams from each of the three series, Camping World Truck, Xfinity and Monster Energy NASCAR Cup, had hero cards ready to be handed out. But how these hero cards were displayed shows the ingenuity of some teams.

Some were rather bland and basic. A weighted box to hold the hero cards. Ho hum….Basic

Basic Too

Martin Truex’s display had the foresight for a clear cover to avoid rains or strong winds.Truex Display

Paul Menard’s display utilized a Menard storefront to help pass out the hero cards.Menard Display

Menard Display Closeup

Basic Too

The folk’s from Procore and Kasey Kahne, used a fuel can as their prop.Kahne Display

Winning Hero Card Display at NASCAR’s ISM Raceway

But Jimmie Johnson showed he hit the nail on the head with this design. See how it contrasts with his race mate, Alex Bowman?Johnson Bowman Hero Card Display

Funny how a little time and ingenuity can make you stand out in a crowd. Just like in life, right?

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Headlight Restorer and Protectant from Chemical Guys

It seems every year at the SEMA Show that more vendors pop up offering a headlight restoration product.  From a few companies that offered a slew of detailing gear and compounds, now anybody with a selling spot had a miracle liquid cleaner for those pesky glazed over headlights.Headlight Before

Headlight history

Ever since the car manufacturers dropped using glass headlights, (anybody remember the sealed round H-4’s ?), which was initiated in 1983; the movement to plastic lenses has also created a market to repair the glazed, cloudy lenses. Originally many just paid their mechanic to swap in a new lens but that option gets more and more expensive. So now companies offer up various cleaners to restore the lens to like new condition.

Headlight restoration

Some sites will recommend toothpaste or even bug repellant to clean lenses but honestly these are short term fixes that mask the issue. Most legitimate cleaners work by smoothing out the rough surface and then polishing the plastic back to new.  If the surface has really degraded, the repair process might need to actually start with sandpaper to get in all the deep crevices.

Headlight Restorer and Protectant from Chemical Guys

We had the chance to try out the Headlight Restorer and Protectant liquid from Chemical Guys, a leader in the boutique car detailing business.  These guys (no pun intended) know their stuff and I was impressed with the outcome.  Our test car was a 2010 Camry whose lenses have been exposed to some intense Arizona heat.  The directions call for spreading 3 – 6 dots of Headlight Restorer and Protectant over a microfiber towel or applicator pad, then scrubbing the hazy headlight lens vigorously until the polish turns clear and finally wipe off residue with a clean microfiber towel and inspect work. Repeat as necessary.Cleaner on a microfiber

The protectant part of this product is equally important because after cleaning and polishing the lens, the sun is still going to beat down on that plastic.  That means you need some sort of UV resistant layer to help prolong the squeaky clean look. Chemical Guys uses sealant technology to preserve that look and keep the sun at bay.

We were impressed with the ease of use, no need for an electrical buffer, and the look is darn right impressive.  We’ll keep an eye on the lenses and see how they hold up over the next few months, so subscribes to this blog and see how the product holds up in Arizona’s brutal heat.Headlight After

PS  Technically these electrical components are headlamps, and the light they emit are headlights but I don’t know anybody who calls them headlamps. Do you?

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Drag-U-La Selling at Russo and Steele

If you are a certain age, you’ll remember the TV hit- The Munsters. This comedy featured some famous bits and even some neater cars, like the Drag-U-La. It seems strange that the producers would allow purpose built cars that would last for only a few episodes. But we’re glad they did.DragULa Front End

Drag-U-La

The story line was that Grandpa had to build a dragster to race and win back Herman’s “The Munster Koach”. So Hollywood had George Barris produce the car/casket vehicle. While Barris has been known for claiming credit for builds that are barely linked to his firm, this one was designed by Tom Daniel under his auspices. Richard Korkes took on the build and used an actual coffin for the “body”.

The original car moved among sellers after the series and a movie ended. At one point it was owned by Planet Hollywood. The Volo Car Museum had it for a while before flipping it. By then it had a 302 engine and an automatic transmission.DragULa Passenger Side Close Up

Drag-U-La Recreation

So why are we talking about a custom car from the 60’s? Because auction house Russo and Steele has a recreation of the Drag-U-La on their docket for this weekend. We had a chance to part the crowds at a recent Cars and Coffee and check it out on the flat bed tow truck.

Drag-U-La’s Design

This version has the reliable 350 ci engine and a two speed PowerGlide automatic transmission. With such little weight, only functional rear brakes were installed. Just like the original, the exhaust pipes sweep up to look like a church’s organ pipes. The seller claims plenty of “vintage” car parts but also indicates the have “custom made vintage air cleaner”.DragULa Passenger Front

This front engine coffin will certainly be a crowd pleaser when you pull up, but the single seat does limit the ability to hop onto the HOV lanes. Hopefully this is a car you would “die for?”

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Gas Monkey Garage AWOL at Barrett-Jackson

Gas Monkey Garage, Where Are You?

At the January, 2018 Barrett-Jackson Car Auction held in Scottsdale, AZ there are over 1700 cars and trucks ready to sell. But the venerable Gas Monkey Garage, with Richard Rawlings and Dennis “I need my name on every shirt I wear” Collins are nearly invisible.GMG GT350 Decal

Gas Monkey Garage

As mentioned previously the most recognizable Gas Monkey Garage selling vehicle is the 1956 Nomad that Rawlings did for Dale Earnhardt Jr. and Mountain Dew. It has drawn some interest under the tent and it will be interesting to see what it brings.

Gas Monkey Garage’s GT350

As for Gas Monkey Garage, there is a nearly new 2016 Shelby GT350 Mustang that was on the Fast N’ Loud series on the Discovery channel. Rawlings drove it onto the track when he was building a car for Kurt Busch. From the seller’s description it indicates the car “was personally owned by Richard Rawlings of gas Monkey Garage”. So it is anybody’s guess if the seller is actually Richard Rawlings.GMG GT350 Low

For the car itself, it has less than 200 miles on the Mustang. It is black inside and out along with a vivid red racing stripe. Not sure why the seller hasn’t taken care of a recall for an engine oil cooler tube assembly replacement yet. After all it wasn’t on the road that much.

The Shelby Mustang is the 5.2 V8 engine with the six speed manual transmission. It sells on Friday (the seller couldn’t even get a Saturday docket number?) So if you were expecting a fleet of Gas Monkey Garage cars at the auction his week, you might be disappointed.GMG GT350 Rear End

So do you think the GT350 will sell for above retail? After all it is nearly new and hardly abused?

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1966 Shelby Mustang GT350 Sells Soon

GT350 Mustang

We recently wrote on another site about the revival of the 1965 Shelby Mustang GT350R. At next week’s Barrett-Jackson Car Auction, a 1966 Shelby GT350 is being offered for sale with a reserve. Few cars at the Barrett-Jackson auction come with reserves, but this one does. the car will cross the stage on Saturday, January 20, 2018 in Scottsdale, AZ. That is prime time for selling car during the week of auctions in Arizona.GT350 front end

Reserve Auction

With a reserve car, the seller has a predetermined price that he wants to get and otherwise it won’t sell. Now that price is unknown to the potential buyers normally, so if the reserve is met, the bidders know for sure the car will sell and often more bidders will enter the auction. And if the price, doesn’t reach to the reserve? You can bet the house representatives will get with the seller trying to get him to lower the reserve and make a deal (and of course get the house the commission).GT350 left rear

GT350 Prototype

What makes this special is it was Carroll Shelby’s first 66 Mustang and was used as a prototype. Of course it came with a 289 and the Borg Warner T-10 four speed. But it also bears some unique features. It comes with a vinyl roof that was considered and then discarded as a feature. Good call Carroll. It came from the factory with a ton of options including the “Pony” upholstery. Restored in 2011 and has been shown at Pebble Beach.GT350 vinyl roof

The pedigree of this Mustang is above reproach and it will be interesting to see how the bidding goes on this Wimbledon White “K” code two door pony. After all you can only have one #1 serial number and prototype in the year. So what would you bid for the car? A million plus? Will it reach reserve? I’d be willing to bet it will.GT350

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FAST at Barrett Jackson Changes Meaning Here’s Why

FAST at Barrett-Jackson Car Auction

FASTAt the Barrett-Jackson Car Auction, FAST usually 2018 at all of Craig Jackson’s car auctions, FAST will have a totally different and potentially lifesaving meaning.

FAST PSA

For the first time Barrett-Jackson will focus for the whole year on heart disease as a public service message with the American Heart Association. The auctions have always been known for their charity car sales which now approaches almost $100 million in donations. But for 2018 Craig Jackson explained that they will be sending out a heart safe message to their participants.FAST Craig Jackson

FAST

FAST also stands for the warning signs of a heart attack.

F              Facial drooping

A             Arm weakness

S              Speech slurred

T              Time to call 9-1-1

 

1988 Corvette Charity Car

As part of the year-long notification, Jackson had his personal Bugatti Veyron wrapped in red and silver with the #DRIVEN HEARTS hast tag splashed across the sides. FAST Veyron Front Left ViewPlus at next week’s Scottsdale, AZ auction he will be donating the sale of his 1988 Chevrolet Corvette to help fight heart disease. Ironically this sports car had been given him by long time auction consignor and car dealer, Dave Ressler. Ressler recently died from heart disease so this re-gifting is so suiting.FAST 88 Corvette

In addition Barrett-Jackson is sponsoring a special Arizona license plate theme, with $17 of the state yearly fee going to the American Heart Association. FAST AZ license plateSo there are several ways that Barrett-Jackson will help benefit the hearts of car fans!

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Cars and Coffee Explodes in Scottsdale

Okay it didn’t like explode and cause a mess. But the Cars and Coffee monthly show held in “Scottsdale” is growing every month. They outgrew their previous location and moved to an even larger parking lot at Scottsdale Road and Mayo Boulevard. (It’s actually in Phoenix but old habits are hard to shake).Cars and Coffee

Cars and Coffee Selection

They have always had a large showing of exotics and high-end cars. So of course a new Ford GT will be there. Cars and Coffee Ford GTAnd a LaFerrari is at home at this show as well. But there are always plenty of classic iron to enjoy, like this split window Corvette.Cars and Coffee Split Window 63 Corvette

The folks that put this on do it as a labor of love. Lots of volunteers are in place along with a few paid security forces. The crowd is respectful and the mood is always friendly and inviting. Got a Dave Kindig built Nomad? Bring it. Want to bring out a nice truck, they always have room.Cars and Coffee Dave Kindig Build

Cars and Coffee Monthly Show

So if you are coming out for some winter warmth and relaxation, remember the first Saturday of the month cars and Coffee is held “near” Scottsdale! Otherwise keep an eye out for our updates and twitter postings.

Happy Halloween

Halloween driverOn behalf of all the folks at here at Route 66 PubCo have a scary Halloween !

Halloween front

 

Halloween ride 2

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