Security Measures

This time of year is amazing for a few reasons, the first is the start of the warmer weather here in the UK, hopefully followed by a nice summer. The second is the Car Show season is underway as I mentioned before. The third reason is can’t wait for the Hay Fever to kick in and make me feel rubbish, joke! Still, I can’t think of anything nicer (car related), than driving to a classic car to show, parking her up and have people appreciate all your hard work. A sense of pride comes over every owner of their much-loved and cherished cars, that’s regardless of the car’s make, age or condition. But, there is one thing that worries me now and that’s security.

I have been talking to a couple of owners of some UK Ford owners at shows and the buzz word is “GPS”. No, I don’t mean the fact people use their SatNavs to get the shows, but more so what happens during and after the show. The very worrying story going around is that a particular car is target by organised gangs who are on the look out for quick sale car, or for some specific cars to be sold on as parts. Some of these car’s parts are worth more as “breaking” than the whole car to sell it complete, with the added risk of selling on an obviously stolen classic car. These top quality original parts are sold on to unsuspecting owners, not knowing that the parts they have bought have been stolen from such other classic cars.

How do they do it?

The answer is just to simple. These gangs are using small GPS tags and hiding them on your car during the show. Somebody could be talking to you while the other places the tag on the car without you knowing. When you leave the show they will track the GPS tag to the place where the car is kept. They then make plans on how to steal it at a later date.

There are some gadgets on the market that detect these sort of things by detecting transmissions of frequencies. They vary in price considerably and I bought one of the cheaper ones. Believe it or not it works! I was going to do a review of it, but not sure if it’s worth while as it’s so simple.

You turn it on and adjust the sensitivity and then wave it over your car. Yes you may look a little strange doing it. What I tend to do now is drive off and find a quiet place then pull over and check. This gadget is the size of a pack of ten cigarettes and has a long aerial to pull out for detection. The unit has a rechargeable battery inside that lasts for ages, wave it near your mobile phone and it has a melt down. There is another feature on the device to detect pin hole cameras by reflection using the red filter to look through. I’m not bothered with that to be honest. So now I carry one of these with me in the car now and check when I leave the show. Over kill? I suspect so, but to safe is better than sorry!

I’m waiting for the next car show and I had a little brain wave while in my garage. I was cleaning my toolbox while looking for things to do in the garage. When I decided to protect the paint! This toolbox was bought for me as Birthday present and Christmas together as they are pretty close together just after the wife bought the project car for me. The tool box was a second-hand purchase, in near mint condition. It was more than we wanted to pay, but it was worth it for the relatively small bargain amount. The guy wanted a very quick sale as he was moving and needed the money, I was just lucky to be looking on eBay at the right time when I saw it and “Buy it now” button was pressed. So just like my car this toolbox is very sentimental to me, almost as much as my car. At the end of the day, you get what you pay for and nobody can deny the Snap-On quality.

The tops of the draws are the areas I was thinking of, although I clean my tools before I put them away carefully, there may be times where I could chip the paint, as the marks show here from the previous owner when I got the box home. I knew they were there, they are tiny yes, but enough to worry me for accidental damage.

So what was the solution? Vinyl wrap. I looked around for some ideas and came up with Carbon Fibre. I worked out roughly how much I needed and ordered some quality wrap and not the cheap stuff. If I didn’t like it, I could remove it and it was going to be back to where it was. The ideal size was going to be five centimeters to allow the cover to the front, over the top of the draw and secure at the back. An old hardwood shelf made an ideal cutting top with a scalpel and a spirit level for a straight edge to cut the strips.

Degrease the draws with cleaners and allow to dry. Peel of the backing from the wrap and carefully to stick to the front of the draws on top of the chrome trim. Using a hairdryer heat up the wrap until it’s soft to allow you to bend the wrap smoothly over the angles and to make the glue more tacky. From the very front edge press the wrap down evenly to remove any wrinkles or air bubbles. Trim the ends up as you need to.

Then with the firmly down on top heat the back edge and repeat.

I am really pleased with the results and it doesn’t detract away from the Snap-On look.

So the before and after? Good job or pimped it up to much. I could have used clear or a plain coloured wrap of course. But this was a little different.

So back to securityagain. I have lots of it, including the very simple and brutal chaining of this tool box to the wall, brutal and simple. The other serious measures I have taken will give the game away, but the my car, garage and house are very well protected from low life scum bags who want to steal other people’s property and hard work. It’s not so much the money as it’s all well insured. It’s the fact that nobody can ever replace the sentimental value, or even come close to repaying my physical man hours to restore that car.

Am I just plain ol’ parnoid, or does anybody else have good tips to share with other classic car owners and readers? Are these stories I have been hearing scare tactics or the real deal? Please let me and everybody else know.

Posted in Articles, Car, car shows | Tagged , , , , , | 19 Comments

Car Show Let Down

A very unusual situation happened to me regarding a car show where I was disappointed at the event. This was the first car show of the year which was held fairly local to me at only half hour drive away. I had been to a previous event at the same venue before and I was little disappointed back then. The event(s) were held at Stonham Barns in Suffolk. The first show that I attended was good for attendance with plenty of cars to look at with a couple of good stalls, but the winning trophies seemed to go to people who were known to the judges, I dare to say. I don’t expect trophies at the events I attend, the whole point of me attending is that I like to share my Mustang passion with other car enthusiasts, it certainly wasn’t sour grapes for not winning anything as I didn’t enter ayway. In fact I agreed with one of the winners which really was a good looking car. Anyway, back to last weekend the show was billed as “Spring Break Custom Car Show.” To be held on the 8th & 9th April. Here is the sales pitch for that weekend:

“Join us over the weekend of Saturday 8th and Sunday 9th April 2017 for the Spring Break Custom Car Show.

The event is an early season, blow off the cobwebs, laid back, friendly, take us as you find us kind of weekend. A gathering for everyone with an interest in Rods, Bikes, Yanks, ’Mid Century’ and  ’Kustom Kulture’.

ALTHOUGH THE WHOLE WEEKEND IS DEDICATED TO ALL ASPECTS OF VINTAGE, HOT ROD AND KUSTOM KULTURE ON SUNDAY THE FOCUS IS ON 50’S AND LATER. CARS AND BIKES AS LATE AS 1973 ARE PERMITTED IN THE MAIN ‘SPRING BREAK’ SHOW & SHINE, AND THERE IS AN ADDITIONAL SHOW & SHINE COMPETITION FOR LATER VEHICLES OF ‘SPECIAL INTEREST’. THIS WILL INCLUDE CLASSES FOR LATER AMERICAN CARS, ALL CUSTOM VEHICLES INCLUDING LATER BIKES. (MODERN HARLEY’S AND OTHER CRUISERS, CHOPPERS, BOBBERS ETC.) IN PREVIOUS YEARS THE RESPONSE TO THIS SHOW HAS BEEN VERY POSITIVE SO COME ALONG AND ENJOY.

There will also be many stalls and traders, auto jumblers, swapmeeters and vintage/record stalls for you to wander around. You are welcome to stay for the weekend we have tickets that include the price of camping. Please visit our website to find out more.”

Reads like it will be a great weekend, yes?

Me and friend of mine Craig who is also into his cars in a big way, decided we would attend on the Saturday 8th as we both had plans on the Sunday. The start times weren’t advertised from what we could see, but these things usually start around the ten o’Clock. We arranged to meet before hand and go in convoy. There was no signs on the way there which made us think had we got the right day even? We got there and was told that we were the first to arrive and was charged £8 each for the entry, we got an orange wrist band which allowed us to go back in and out as we wished, even half price for the animal enclosures entry. I was asked to follow one of the organisers to the show field where he opened the gate and I was first in and asked to start a row for the cars.

A few moments later a couple more cars arrived in the field to park next to me.

Eventually by the end of the day there was another eight cars on show and shine field with me. There was a couple of other cars driving into the field, parking up for a short while then leaving again. We walked around the few stalls that were there with others being set up throughout the day. I was told that Sunday was the main day of the show and people turn up during the Saturday evening if stopping over or on the Sunday morning itself. Around the outside of the main show field there was a number of caravans and a few other nice cars ready for the Sunday show.

For me advertising a car show for a Saturday and a Sunday event, but really it’s a Sunday show with a Saturday actually being a prep day was pretty misleading. I saw the whole thing in one hour and that was including the stalls that were open. I thought it was a real poor effort as did Craig. We stayed as long as we could although we were seriously bored. We treated ourselves to a full English breakfast nearer to lunch time so we could waste more time to see if any more cars turned up. The weather was fantastic and not as though it was raining to stop the cars from venturing out for the day. I mentioned earlier that we were charged the full price of £8 per car to get in and I think that was bit strong especially as the Sunday was slightly cheaper to get in, for what reason I don’t understand. Still, this time next year I’m sad to say that I wont bother. There is a very positive upside of the day though. I got to met some great people who were asking lots of questions about my car. I think I even convinced one guy that he should get a project of his own. I honestly hope that the show had the expected nine hundred or so cars on the Sunday they were hoping for, in which case it would be a good show of cars for people to look at. It would bea real shame if people stopped going to these events and they get cancelled due to lack of interest.

The drive there and back was fantastic for me in the sun, windows down and listening to the v8 I hadn’t heard properly for a few months over the winter. Surely if the event is advertised as a weekened two day show, then make it a weekend two day show with cars on both days. Or did I read and get the advert very wrong? To think I gave up a precious weekend I could of had down at the Mustang Maniac yard. Every car show I have been to in the past I have enjoyed, and I don’t doubt for one minute that will ever change in the future for me. However, it does have to be said that if there are no cars, then it can’t be a good show for anybody. One guy summed up the day for me when he said “At least you bothered to turn up.” I had nothing to respond back to him with.

I’m now looking forward to the next lot of show that’s for sure and will bring some pictures of those for you. I hope you have a great Easter, and don’t eat to much chocolate!

Posted in car shows, Driving my car | Tagged , , , , | 34 Comments

Social Media Reflections

I should start with my head held in shame for not posting for two months. I apologise and I know it’s a bad way to treat your followers and readers. To my own self defence though, there hasn’t really been much to do on the Mustang over the winter that I can write and tell you all about it. I would like to say a “Thank You” for the emails about the look of the new blog, they have been very positive to date and I appreciate all of your comments. In the mean time I haven’t t been sitting around doing nothing over these last couple of months, oh no. I have started to spread my wings or is it; drift my tyre smoke, into other areas of Social Media. Now I must admit I am not a great fan of Facebook and all the waste of time posts along the lines of “share this post if you have dark hair”, “share this post if you write with your right hand”, “so and so is playing ping-pong and wants you to send them the golden ball” or “I have just got up and I am eating my breakfast”, type of stuff. It drives me mad in fact so I tend to keep away from that side of it. But, I do realise that it’s an important tool to keep in contact that just can’t be ignored. My reflections on Social Media have now prompted me to jump in rather than dip my toes as it were. As a result in that thought logic I have started my Instagram account which can be found here, or cut and paste this link into your browser: https://www.instagram.com/onemanandhismustang/?hl=en.   Search for “onemanandhismustang” if you want to find me that way on there.

If that wasn’t enough, I also started my Pinterest account which can be found here, or again cut and paste this link to your browser: https://uk.pinterest.com/onemanandhismus/  Search for user “onemanandhismus” if you want to find me that way on there too.

You will know the accounts are me because the Gravatar (Logo) badge I use is the Mustang Tribar on the blue background that matches my car.

The Instagram account should (in theory at least) allow me to post pics that I like from the car shows or other places that I attend, providing I have a signal of course. The Pinterest account on the other hand will be more of a save and share pics type of account, for all things Mustangs and the other female in my life, the legendary Marilyn Monroe. Please feel free to follow me on the accounts and I will follow you back, it’s only fair of course. Message me or do what you do on these platforms as I am a little new to it all at the moment.

In the mean time I have been making regular trips down to Mustang Maniac to see what has been going on down at the yard and enjoy the company of the guys while getting dirty and helping out where I can. Adam very kindly got me a surprise gift, he managed to track me down a rare almost mint condition 1966 Mustang Sales Brochure. I have scanned it as well as created a PDF document and shared it above in the menu “Articles/1966 Sales Brochure”, or click here for the hyper link. I have been after one of these brochures for a long time and this is the real deal and not a copy. I was so chuffed with it that I couldn’t speak for a while. Thinking about it – maybe that was the plan? Seriously though, it’s amazing and has now been stored away very carefully.

When the weather has been nice I have rolled out the Mustang out of the garage and given her a much needed clean to get rid of that pesky layer of dust on the paint job which is hiding under the dust cover. Why? Because I can and it’s a tenuous excuse to wax it again and see glorious reflections in my paint job. I also wanted to build up a nice few layers of wax as much as I can before the new car show season starts. Well that was my excuse and I’m sticking to it. A little while ago on the blog heading menus, I started a new section called “Car Detailing Reviews”. This is going to be used for the products that I use, or have used with my personal reviews on those products, which I have purchased with my own hard earned money. Some have been amazing while others not so. The recent additions that I have finally gotten around to writing up about are; Meguiar’s “Gold Class Carnauba Plus” wax, click here for that review. Here are a couple of pics to tease you a bit on that review.

I also have been looking for a good quality product for my Magnum 500 chrome wheels to keep them in tip top shape without damaging the polished surfaces. I found a product called “Mint Rims Wheel Wax” by Auto Finesse, click here for that review, with a couple of pics to get you going.

The wheel wax was on a special offer at the time, so I purchased another of the Auto Finesse range “Mercury Metal Polish”, for that review click here to see what I think of that product. A pic or two from the review.

Finally a question.

I have had a couple of requests to be a guest writer on my blog. Nothing wrong with that of course, and it could be good. But, when I responded back via email they didn’t want to give me any details and just wanted to post on my blog. Is it not courtesy to let the owner of the blog know what you are going to post about or not? I appreciate this blog has a limited appeal as it’s (mostly) about Mustangs, the last thing I want to do is have a post on the there about the latest Nike shoes or the benefits of whistling with one finger in your ear! Any thoughts on how this “guest blogger” process works? I would be grateful to know.

Hopefully my next post won’t be so long a wait!

Posted in Articles, Blog, Car Detailing, car shows, Driving my car, Photo's, Reviews | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , | 23 Comments

A Freshen Up

My first proper post of the new year comes at the end of the first month, yes I know that is pretty bad, but there isn’t anything to really say when there are no car shows, (lame excuse time). Is it too late to wish you all a Happy New Year? Anyway, towards the end of December last year I had an email to say that the old blog theme was a bit too dark and sometimes difficult to read on a cell phone. That got me thinking about a very valid point. I hadn’t changed the look in years, so I thought I would update the theme to a lighter and much fresher look. The title for this post was going to be a “A Quick Freshen Up”, unfortunatly it wasn’t anything like as fast as it could have been, so I dropped the “quick”. The process started off with me sifting through lots of themes to see what they looked like, can I have the menu where I wanted it, pictures, widgets etc. I found one that I liked and had created the new header pic. Alas all was not good when I checked the look on other browsers and page sizes. The header image was resized with the page style, that just caused havoc with the title I edited onto a photo itself, what that actually means is that the top part of the header picture couldn’t be seen on wide-screen versions, then only half of the title on the mobile screens. After looking at other various themes I have settled on this one along with another revised new header pic. The old header was based on the car being built with the lights on and the grill. As my car has been completed for a year now (which is still being enjoyed by yours truly), I thought why not have a nice pic of the car, so there it is. I have kept a nod to the old blog pages with the background “pony” image just being an inverted version, with a slight tint added now. I hope people don’t turn away thinking it’s the wrong blog. 😦

So it was out with the old, and in with the new!

The blog may have a new look and yet I tried to make it still feel the same, so what’s the best bit of the blog now? It’s still the same ol’ me writing about anything however tenuously related to Mustangs. 🙂 Please let me know what you think of the revised blog, did you prefer the old style or like the new lighter version?

Towards the end of last year was interviewed Dennis Fletcher and he posted it on his blog. The last couple of posts from me were reblogs from his site: Customs N Classics, I hope you liked the reads as much as I enjoyed doing it.

The car got a treat over the Holidays, as I asked for donations to the “help keep the Mustang warm” fund. I had been saving up for a while and these came up as a real cheap deal so I ordered them and laid them in the freezing cold. These were 7mm solid PVC, coin top, click together style tiles at half a meter each tile. I ignored the fitting guide (as men do), and made sure that the car’s tyres would run down the middle of the tiles and not across the joins.

garagefloor5

The tiles have made a big difference to the temperature in the garage, now it’s not as dusty, non-slip and so much easier to clean up. Not that I spilt anything on the new tiles when they were less than twenty-four hours old! 😦

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OMAHM – Interview – Part 2

Thanks to Customs n Classics for posting the final part of the interview.

Customs ~N~ Classics

Alright, we’re back, part 2 of the interview with mart about his full Mustang restoration.

The last post gave you some insight into why he chose this car, who bought it for him, (Again, his wife ROCKS! Click here to see the article about it, again!), and what he has had to do to complete this build.

Here, we are going to finish the interview and here a couple of stories regarding the Mustangs encounter with other humans.

Where is it now, in the rebuild stage?

After four and a half years of hard, sometimes tedious, frustrating work she was completed. That’s every weekend I was working on the car, except for a few weeks of holidays. I also worked during the weekend and evenings during the summer while the light lasted.

Mart drove it as a completed restoration on February 21, 2016

Were there any special parts…

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One Man and His Mustang – Interview Part 1

A great blog I follow has asked me for an interview, a real first for me so here it is….

Customs ~N~ Classics

So, let me introduce Mart, owner of Onemanandhismustang.

Throughout this article, I have linked back to specific articles for you to see what he was talking about. Mart did a tremendous job with this restoration project and it should give others some encouragement. The articles and videos I link back to are Mart’s, but, I feel that this interview/article would be less that amazing without his original articles for you to view.

What type of vehicle are we going to go over today?

1966 Ford Mustang Coupe, purchased on September 17, 2011, for Less than £4,000 (just). (About $4800, for those under the American dollar)

Are you the first owner, or, do you know of the first owner, or prior owner?

Prior to me buying the car there was 1 previous owner who abandoned the idea.

Is there a reason for this particular vehicle?

In my late teens I had…

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A Year On The Road

A year after being on the road and attending car shows it comes to that time of year that every classic car owner dreads. The UK requires by law a car that is the years old and any car up to 1960 must pass a road worthy test, or M.O.T (Ministry Of Transport) test. It can fail for a gas cap not fitting correctly, a bulb not working, rust or “drivers view of the road” what ever that means etc. December last year my car passed her first test since the restoration. As it was due again I had a word with Adam to see when he could book me in for the M.O.T. Saturday. I drove down to the Mustang Maniac yard to catch up with the guys to fill in time before my appointment. Time flew by and was given a map on how to get there along with verbal directions. The guys know I’m seriously diabolical when it comes to directions. I set off and had the map on the seat next to me, simple enough. I turned off too soon and turned around to get back on the correct road again. Yep, I got lost even with a hand drawn map. The best of it was that Lance from Mustang Maniac had spotted me, what are the chances of that? With my luck it’s every chance. Needless to say that my WhatsApp group for Mustang Maniac went mental and I knew exactly what was waiting for me. I eventually found the place after thirty mins that should have taken fifteen. I pulled up to the testing station and took a pic of the car in the reflection which matched the garage paint job. I was right, my WhatsApp had a torrent of grief waiting for me, showing no sympathy what so ever for little detour.

mot2016-1

The guys at the test center took my keys and I watched my car disappear into the workshop. A short while later according to the clock, but seemed like hours in waiting time passed by when the guys came back to the desk. They smiled and gave me my keys back with, “she’s passed with flying colours.” My heart rate now slowed, that was promptly replaced with a proud smile. I paid the bill, thanked the guys and left with my all important certificate. The test results are updated on the goverment system instantly, so the paper doesn’t mean anything except something for your records. The drive home was quicker and much more straight forward, I think. I arrived back at the yard to yet more grief asking me how I got lost. I blamed the map but they weren’t having any of it for some reason.

I had asked Adam if I could put my car up on ramps to put a spanner over all the important nuts and bolts ro make sure everything was where it should be when I come back from the M.OT. Adam kindly said yes and he had already moved a car of the ramp ready for me while I was out. He added “I will be there in a minute to check her over with you.”

The car was lifted up for me to get underneath and inspect. At this point Adam duly arrived back to see that everything was all OK. He grabbed another torch and went over everything looking for signs of movement that the MOT itself wouldn’t pick up. The thumbs up was given by Adam who told me to tighten the rear axle to shock plate clamps. They looked fine to me, but check them I did.

He was right, they needed a turn or so just to take up the stretch in the bolts. After that I got out some white cleaning cloths so I could clean all my suspension. There was a little messy water stain on the left side due to me over filling the radiator, the overflow did its job and dumped some water.

Gibbs Brand Lubricant was the choice of the day and everything got coated that needed to be coated. I polished the white prop shaft that still looked white after a year.

mot2016-11

Cleaning my Mustang is therapeutic and enjoyable and in no way a chore. Yet cleaning the other daily driver cars is not quite the same somehow. Now that my car was cleaned to my standards underneath as it was much easier to clean while up in the air. I could see just how filthy the car was by the state of the two white cloths I had used.

mot2016-6

OK, it wasn’t that dirty at all which made me happy. The trouble was I had to drive it home again, the weather wasn’t looking to good, so I said my thanks and goodbyes to the guys. The master plan was to get home before the rain. The drive home took a little over the hour and I managed to get the car home before the rain, which started about an hour or so after the car was safely in the garage.

The trouble is what do you buy your car for Christmas? I want to get some more cleaning products ready for the show season 2017. For the first time in years I haven’t asked for anything from my Snap On rep. I now have most of the tools that I need and bought them as I went along. If I need tools that I haven’t got then I suspect I will be in some sort of big mechanical trouble. I have got my eye on a few stainless steel clips for the rubber hoses. Lets see what Santa brings.

Wishing you and all my readers and followers a Happy Christmas and great New Year.

Posted in Car, car shows | Tagged , , , , | 12 Comments