Tag Archives: SEMA

Detailing Rig from MYCHANIC A Rolling Masterpiece

Wow!  The first thing we recognized when checking out this MYCHANIC  Detailing Rig is just how well designed it is. This is not just another one size first most water bucket but a purpose built detailer’s dream.DSCN1163

MYCHANIC

The MYCHANIC brand is an up and coming brand that is making a name for itself with well designed and professional grade materials. This detailing rig is no exception. Dressed out in their iconic Irish Green hue, this detailing rig is eye catching and handy. When offered a chance to try out this detailing rig, we jumped at the offer! They are based in Tennessee and we first met them at the AAPEX show in Las Vegas, NV last year.

Detailing Rig

The box arrived with the partially assembled detailing rig heavily padded and carefully wrapped. Order this and the FedEx man won’t be delivering a banged up, damaged product. When a company puts this much thought into how to package and ship it, you know this is a company you’ll like seeing more of.DSCN5519

This rig is made of powder coated heavy gauge metal pieces that were easy to assemble. It helps if you follow the instructions, but it was easy to assemble.

Detailing Rig Design

This detailing rig comes with FIVE heavy duty urethane casters with roller bearings. The fifth caster on the one end makes it that much harder for it tip over.  Again, well engineered!  DSCN1170

The bucket comes with a removable perforated bottom grid.  You’ve probably seen endless variations on this guard, but the purpose is to let the dirt and grime that accumulates in the water bucket, settle below the grid and not in your bucket water. Many serious detailers use a two bucket method to further reduce the dirt accumulation in your wash water, but again this shows MYCHANIC’s attention to detail. The bucket rim includes two sets of cutouts to hang your favorite detailing product from.DSCN1160

Detailing Rig Components

The metal tray is a great place to store a few rags or tools while detailing your car.  The side beverage holder is a great place to plop a drink, cuz’ we all know detailing is hard work.DSCN1159 The padded seat is form fitting and provides for a comfortable pad for your aching butt. Best news is the seat pad is easily detachable, so it can serve as a kneeling pad or you could even plop your rear end even lower to the ground.DSCN1166

The detailing rig is a good height and will put you up along the belt line of the car if you need to do some serious work along the sides of the car. Plus with the bucket it is a great tool for general car washing duties.

Useful Detailing Rig

Of course this rig is not just reserved only for detailing duties. It would be a great overall mechanic seat when working on brakes, front end and other car parts. It is heavy duty and will stand up to some serious work duty.  You can check out the seat here or look over their entire product lineup. They are good folks with some great ideas.DSCN1172

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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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Chenille Wash Mitts from Chemical Guys

Chenille Wash Mitts from Chemical GuysChenille Car Wash Mitt

Well it might not be earth shattering in the overall scope of car care, having a great wash mitt is certainly a big help. There are proponents of various wash devices, everything from the old school baby diaper to large spore sponges and microfiber towels. But this chenille wash mitt is a perfect fit.

A wash mitt is designed to go over your hand and allows you to deliver sudsy water to your car’s sheet metal. A mitt is definitely not a plastic scrubby or the back side of a squeegee. Mitts are primarily designed to bring the soap water to the car.

Chenille Wash Mitt

Chemical Guys, a boutique car detailing supplier, has a bright neon green chenille wash mitt made from microfiber. This chenille car wash mitt from Chemical Guys is packed with plush “noodles” to help hold a ton of soapy water when cleaning your ride. This allows for a scratch free way to wash your vehicle in record time. The mitt is made from a 70/30 blend of microfiber and is super plush. The mitt has an elastic cuff to make sure it stays put on your hand. The lime green color will help you easily find it amongst your cleaning supplies. I was amazed how much water this mitt can hold, you truly have to try it out yourselves.Chenille Car Wash Mitt Cuff

You can always clean the microfiber mitt with hot water and soap and allow to dry. Of course since it is microfiber NEVER use a softener sheet or liquid!

Two Bucket Car Wash Method

I generally tout the two bucket method for car washing. Fill up one bucket with soapy water and the other can be tap water. Put your chenille car wash mitt in the soapy water and starting at the top of the car, starting letting that soapy water wash away the dirt. If you find a stubborn spot a little persuasion with the mitt will remove most contaminants. Take your now dirty mitt and rinse thoroughly in the clear tap water bucket. This allows the trapped dirt to go into that bucket instead of mixing into the soapy water. Now take your rinsed out mitt and dunk it into the soapy water and repeat. You now have mastered the two bucket method of car washing. Congratulations.Chenille Car Wash Mitt Noodle

The Chenille Car Wash mitt is a great offering from Chemical Guys and should be in every detailer’s arsenal. Now go wash your car!

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SEMA Collector Car Appreciation Day Is Today

Any day is a good day to drive a classic car, but Friday July 14th will be exceptionally good.  That is the day that SEMA will celebrate their annual Collector Car Appreciation Day.  This will mark the eighth year that SEMA seeks to acknowledge the vital impact classic cars and their owners contribute to America.

The US Senate has passed resolutions noting the collector car  celebratory day each year.  SEMA is encouraging collector car owners to set up special cruises or events to mark this day (or even the whole month of July, since many might not be able to participate on a workday.)

So expect an interesting view in the employee parking lots this Friday.  And if you don’t have a classic to drive consider these three iconic cars. They’ll always be popular and cool

32 Ford Deuce

The truly iconic looking roadster has been celebrated on US stamps and is an eye catcher, although driving “topless’ in July’s heat may not be the best choice. A roadster by definition has no top and no side windows.  It was designed to be fast and look cool. Mission accomplished. 

Corvette convertible

Hard to go wrong with any year of America’s sportscar.  To down weather is here and the Corvette’s are meant for the open road.

 

57 Chevy

57 Chevy post
1957 2 door sedan

The display of chrome and sharp angles is a classic look for the late 50’s and reflects our interest in the upcoming Space Age.  The 1957 model was the last year of the “tri-five” Chevys and some might say it was the best of all three years. There are always a ready supply of parts for these Chevys and plenty of reference materials. Plus restored vehicles are readily available.

Some may say that any day is a good day to drive a classic.  Plus driving these cars are good for them and you!  So take a cruise in a classic today and everyday!

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Dodge Demon Delays Dealership’s Shake Downs

Dodge Demon Smoking the TiresKudos to the suits at Dodge that established a production system that will punish dealerships that opt to sell the 2018 Dodge Challenger SRT Demon with outrageous dealer premiums.  Last week Dodge announced how the monster 840 horsepower Dodge Demon  will be allocated.

Dodge Demon Allocation

The Dodge dealerships will be parceled out the limited run of 3,300 Demons based on objective criteria including:

·         Sold at least one Hellcat in past twelve months

·         Allocation will be based on how many Hellcats they sold (60%) and their sales of the “regular” Chargers and Challengers (40%)

Dodge Demon MSRP

To prevent price gouging, those Dodge Demons sold at MSRP (Manufacturer’s Suggested Retail Price) or less will be produced first.  So the dealerships wanting to rocket up the price and their profits on these limited edition speedsters will be the last to the party.

In case you were wondering the 2018 Dodge Challenger SRT Demon starts at a U.S. Manufacturer’s Suggested Retail Price of $84,995 (including $1,700 gas guzzler tax, excluding $1,095 destination); Demon crate unleashes full power for $1.  So spring for the extra buck and get the full package!

Dodge Demon

In case you were sleeping under a rock the Dodge Demon is designed for the strip and is the fastest quarter-mile production car ever.  It will be delivered in the fall of 2017 as a 2018 model year Challenger. It has been clocked at 9.65 seconds for the true quarter mile at 140 mph, with sticky tires.  And yes it raised the front wheels off the ground.  When’s the last time you saw that at the local drag strip.

Paperwork for Dodge Demon To avoid shenanigans, the dealership will have to submit a notarized sales order.  The owner must also sign off on some safety/technical notes that will probably help Dodge when the inevitable lawsuit emerges after the first collision from a Demon.  Hopefully not at a Cars and Coffee event.
Last week was the beginning of the ordering period.  My guess is the available Dodge Demons will go quick.
 

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Wes Rydell’s 1940 Oldsmobile “Agnes”

1940 Oldsmobile Front viewWes and Vivian Rydell have commissioned some great classic cars over the years.  Earlier this year at the Del Mar Goodguy’s show, their 1940 Oldsmobile “Agnes” was selected for the 2016 Street Rod d’Elegance  Award.1940 Oldsmobile Hood Up

1940 Oldsmobile

This rod had languished for a spell before finally being completed by Rad Rides by Troy.  We took these shots when they displayed it in Scottsdale, AZ at the Spring National Goodguy’s Show. They have won this award twice before, including in 2014 with their controversial 1935 Chevy Phaeton.1940 Oldsmobile Right Side

Madame X

Now we can’t wait for the 2016 SEMA Show, where they will be unveiling “Madame X”, a 1939 Cadillac coupe.  It is a takeoff on a concept design based on a 1935 Cadillac 60 Special Sedan originally designed by GM stylist Art Ross. So this car was never built until Chip Foose opted to take on the build.

SEMA 2016

Of all the unveilings scheduled during the SEMA Show, this is the most anticipated with some sneak peeks offered recently.  Can’t wait to see it in person on Tuesday!

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Ford GT Times Four

At this month’s Cars and Coffee in Scottsdale,AZ rolled out four Ford GT’s each in a different color.  This is Scottsdale, after all! About all that was missing was the now highly sought after light blue Gulf Oil trim package.

Ford GT and their History

Ford recently announced that they were bringing back the iconic GT40, for the THIRD time and two were at the SEMA Show!GT at SEMA

First Generation – GT40

The first models came out starting in 1964 and were called the GT40 for Grand Touring, and based on its height being 40 inches. It had a nice run from 1964-1969 and actually went through four generations Mk I through Mk IV. They were strictly built as race cars and were very successful in the Le Mans series. Afterwards the model was built by a South Africa shop and called the CAV GT. It caused a bit of controversy at the time, as it was considered a knock off and not true to the original build.

Second Generation – Ford GT

Ford GT with Ford EmblemThe wizards at Ford opted to bring it back in limited production runs from 2005-2006 with just over 4,000 produced, mainly by hand. Pricing started at under $150,000 and had few options to add on. The iconic front end with the huge air intakes were instantly recognizable. Interestingly, they weren’t called GT40 since the trademark belonged to another company, so they called it the Ford GT.Ford GT in Black

Third Generation- GT

Now the new wizards at Ford announced that they are bringing back the model, now called just the GT for yet another round of limited production starting in 2016. Prices haven’t been announced yet, but I’m guessing it’ll hover around $400,000.GT in Race Trim from Ford

What is interesting about the second generation of Ford GT’s from an appraisal aspect, is these cars are one of the few cars that never depreciated in value! Their rarity and styling kept them in demand and the prices just rose from the start. Of course some dealers helped that push, by marking the prices up beyond the Manufacturer’s Suggested Retail Price (MSRP) with a Dealer’s Additional Markup (DAM).

Most new cars rapidly depreciate as soon as the car leaves the dealer’s lot. That’s why some insurance companies offer coverage for that depreciation as an option. If the car were to be totaled a week after you bought it, the insurance companies might offer you far less than what you owe on the loan or lease! How painful would that be?

But depreciation is just as painful in exotic and sports cars. And if you start out with a $200,000+ car that percentage hurts even more. After all if a new buyer can afford to show off by buying a new, Ferrari California convertible for $200,000 why would they pay the same price for your slightly used five-year older version? You would have to drop the price to $120,000 to generate interest and absorb that depreciation. At many car auctions, late-model cars often can be had for less than half their initial selling prices.

Of course over time, the classics do tend to recover their value as pristine models surface and collectors push the demand back up. Trying buying a 69 Camaro now to see how they recovered from their initial depreciation.

There have been a handful of marquees and models that have avoided that huge depreciation sell off. The key tends to be initial limited production, strong buyer interest due to styling or prestige and great builds that don’t have recalls and lemons linked to them. Something to think about when “investing” in a new car or buying an older classic .

I wonder how long it will be before the third generation shows up at a Scottsdale cars and Coffee event?

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Power Wagon 1949 Four Wheel Drive Beast

Power Wagon’s were produced by Dodge and were popular heavy duty, four wheel drives, before every truck line was offered as a 4X4. They were popular after WWII, as our GI’s came back and wanted a domestic version of their military masters. So Dodge “civilized’ their military monsters and offered up the Power Wagon.Power Wagon 1949 Front View

Jay Leno’s Garage recently took a look at a 1942 Dodge Power Wagon that was modified into a six wheel drive monster. That reminded us of a similar FOUR wheel drive Power Wagon that we saw last year at the SEMA Show.

1949 Power Wagon

It’s a 1949 Dodge Power Wagon Four Door or Crew Cab. This baby was heavily modified and pounded on to make it look this beautiful.Power Wagon 1949 Passenger Front View

Chevy Powered for the Power Wagon

It is powered by a reliable Chevy LS3 engine with a 6.2 liter displacement, producing 430 horses and 424 foot pounds of torque for this bad boy. It also kept it in the family with a GM transmission; a 4L85E along with an Atlas transfer case.

They used a Dana 60 front axle, a Corp 14 bolt rear end with locking differentials and Warn locking hubs. They are using Bilstein shocks to smooth out the ride. Creature comforts included not only power windows and door locks, but power running boards plus Vintage Air Conditioning.Power Wagon 1949 Driver Side

Can’t expect either ride to get any “Arizona pin striping” soon, but they are sure beautiful brutes.

What do you think?

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Engraved Paint on Silver 2013 Nissan GTR

 

Okay so perhaps you get jaded at the SEMA Show with all the rides on display. After a while you might say, “enough” but then you turn the corner and spot this 2013 Nissan GTR.Silver Nissan GTR with Model Yes, ignore the eye candy and focus on the car. Sure a Nissan GTR may not be super rare, but it is different, right? But then check out the exterior finish.

Nissan GTR

That my friend may look like somebody silversmithed and engraved into the metal; but it is actually layers upon layers of paint! Silver Nissan GTR passenger side close upThe artists from Japan slaved over this Nissan and with extensive taping added on layer after layer of paint to end up with this engraved look. They even used a buffer and tapered tool to grind into the paint and create some of those images.Silver Nissan GTR close up

Engraved paint

One of the workers was present at the show and mentioned they were then working on a different model for the upcoming Japan Car Show but in gold tones.

Forget the car, the artistry to make the paint act as engraved metal is outstanding. What do you think?

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Hot Rod Industry Alliance (HRIA) Shows Off at SEMA

The Hot Rod Industry Alliance (HRIA) holds an evening reception during the SEMA Show. And while I enjoy meeting up with old buddies and making new friends, I also enjoy checking out the cars that were handpicked to be displayed at the reception.

A total of six cars and trucks were highlighted this year, so let’s take a look at these beauties.

HRIA – 55 T-Bird

From NASCAR’s” hometown” Mooresville, NC came this 55 Thunderbird in silver hues. A tube chassis mated up to a stock floor pan. It has a Ford Coyote 5.0 L 302 under the hood and Tremec six speed, with Vintage Air Conditioning and nice Halibrand knock off wheels.HRIA 55 Thunderbird

HRIA – 63 Corvette

This convertible Corvette is powered by a Chevy small block 355 with a five speed Tremec. A slick set of Inglese side draft carburetors looked mean and it borrowed some C4 chassis components and a C5’s brake set up. The blue color was an added touch.HRIA 63 Corvette side view

HRIA – 55 Ford

Another Texas build, this one used an Art Morrison chassis and a 528 Boss engine with a TKO 600 transmission. Knock of wheels looked nice with that stance and Gabe’s Interiors did the upholstery.HRIA 55 Ford

HRIA – 59 Rambler

I never get tired looking at this beauty. It was a Great Eight finalist for the Ridler Award in Detroit. The 2 door wagon features a LS small block with Hemi heads and a supercharger. Gabe’s did this interior as well and a Mesa, AZ shop did the work, including over 30 body modifications.HRIA 59 Rambler

HRIA – 70 Challenger

This blue beauty hailed from Mooresville, NC as well and used a 4L60E transmission  with an Edelbrock EFI set up.  Lots of custom work went into shaping those bumpers and changing the rocker panels by lowering them.HRIA 70 Challenger passenger view

HRIA- 69 Chevy C-10

In acknowledgement that trucks can be hot rods and the C-10 is a hot model, out rolled this nice 1969 Chevy. It has a LSX engine (461 ci) with a supercharger and a Tremec six speed. The Roadster Shop supplied the chassis and the owner claims 1000 horsepower with this set up.HRIA 69 Chevy C-10 driver's side

So a nice collection of vehicles helped make for a great evening with the Hot Rodders. They gave out some nice awards and acknowledgements. Can’t wait to meet up with them next year.

So what vehicle struck your heart?

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