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studepeople

CCCA Future

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I read out going President comments by Al Kroemer on the National CCCA Clubs ongoing future. It seems to me that diluting the CCCA's standards for Classic autos for the sake of only increasing membership (maybe) is foolish . These standards are the very reason that I have been in this club for 25 years. To allow the non "Classic Era cars to belong would chase away more of the "Core" members whoown the "Real" Classics". The "Town and Country" mess was not handled correctly and caused much hard feelings. But these were and are post war cars and although pretty should not have been made full Classics. But it is done now ! I see the Horseless Carage club does not alter it's standard to allow none Brass era cars on it's national tours. I don,t think they have trouble with people going on these tours or wanting to change to any other car to come along. There are plenty of true"Classic " cars available if someone wants one . Many of these cars have been stuck away for years never being driven. I think it is the cost that ditate much of what is now happening with Club . Cost of the Cars , cost of the events, this is out of reach for many of the young people we all think we need in the Club to carry on . Maybe it is our own members who will have to decide whether or not this club will go on or not by passing on cars to family now . I think that interest in the "Classic cars has to be there in a person or it will never be there and I don't feel this next generation as a whole loves these cars as we do. If the Club fades away because of no new members then that is the way it is .But to make this Club into another AACA or VMCCA is not what this club represents.

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I almost didn't rejoin the CCCA due to the fiasco over the T&C's, but have been a member so long hated to let it lapse.

The cost of some of the Caravans is quite high, and that doesn't help the more average collector who has an entry level Classic participate in club activities.

And your statement is correct, there are lots of Classic cars out there, some at very reasonable prices........but keeping the interest up in the club is difficult..

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As a member of the CCCA, I can not agree more. If it is a large membership the club wants, then why not just open it up to any car that is 25 years or older. If the club wants to remain true to its roots, it needs to adhere to its mission statement. Allowing "newer" or Non- Classic cars into the club will only dilute its purpose but will chase away existing members like myself. Yes, there were great cars made after WWII, but are they really similar to the great luxury cars of the 1920s and 1930s-I personally don't think so. A Model A Ford is a really great car (I own two of them), but is it the same as a similar year Packard or Cadillac-absolutely not. The Full Classic Cars were an era-just like the cars of the Brass Era and the cars of the 1950s, however, these cars are significantly different and were built with different principals, ideas and technologies than the Full Classics of the 1920s and 1930s.

I do own Non-Classic cars and I also belong to the clubs that cater to these specific cars. When I want to use my 1927 Rolls Royce, I attend CCCA events, when I want to use my brass cars, I attend HCCA events, and when I want to use my period hotrod, I go to those events.

My point is, there are plenty of car clubs out there-especially for the those cars that certain people are trying to make into CCCA Full Classics . I think that the membership will suffer if the CCCA continues to stray from its roots.

Edited by motoringicons (see edit history)

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I believe that CCCA should hold true to the intent of the club, and not try to be all things to all people.

We enjoy owning, maintaining, showing, and driving all of our cars. Only three of ours are Full-Classics , the 1930 Packard 733 7-Passenger Phaeton, 1941 Cadillac Cabriolet, and 1937 Buick Roadmaster 80C Phaeton (Convertible Sedan). These, as well as the non-classics, are shown in varying categories, but are all driven as well.

Belonging to several clubs gives us a pretty good idea of internal functioning, as well as the general mission of each of the groups:

CCCA, HCCA, AACA, VMCCA, Packard, Buick, Oakland, Cadillac-LaSalle, Chevrolet, as well as having previously been a member of Citroen, Kaiser-Fraizer, Pierce-Arrow Society, Franklin, MG, and MOTAA clubs - each have their own area of appeal.

The Marque clubs each serve their own owner-groups-

HCCA serves the Brass-Era collector

VMCCA thrives as "The Touring Club"

CCCA, in my opinion, should continue to be exactly what we were intended to be - the club for CLASSICS as we understand CLASSICS. Yes, certain makes and models will continue to be considered, and some will be accepted - no problem there - our Buick is a recent addition to the ranks, and we respect that approval, but then we enjoyed the car with or without its status, with no snobbery implied or intended.

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Al Kroemer's comments were right on the money. There is nothing in the CCCA history to indicate that the founders had an end date in mind, as I have documented in this forum before. In fact, I just learned that the CCCA used to have a special interest class in judging for cars that were not "full Classics registered, copyrighted, etc." The show at national was wonderful, but the presentation of so many over the top, one off, special and spectacular coach built cars left the average classic that the average guy can afford somewhat in the dust. A Packard 160, or 180, pales next to a 40 Darrin 4 dr. convertible, or 38 120 with a spectacular Graber body. Then there were the 2 Stutzes, one with a blower, and the other a DV32.

If people spent less time wining and more time producing articles, attending the CARivans, Grande Classics, and membership meets, the club would be far better. No one jumps up to volunteer to hold offices, either locally or nationally. Of course it would be nice too if members actually walked over to new members or prospective members and acted in an inviting manner. It would be nice too if members bought memberships for their children, grandchildren, great- great grandchildren, etc. It would be wonderful instead of bellyaching, bring the neighbor's kid and their girlfriend/boyfriend on a day tour. In other words, it would be nice if the people and others who posted in this thread acted proactively instead of reacting. I no longer go to church because of people like that. Think about it.

When was the last time someone was forced to like somebody else's car?

I slept in the back seat of my pickup (30 degrees) to get to Dallas on time, and bunked with my son, and avoided the banquets to save money, but I cannot compare the week to anything but heaven. You should have been there.

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I am not a member of the CCCA but support the idea of the club being just for Classics. I am in the AACA and the Pontiac Oakland Club and should join the CCCA even though I do not own a Classic, but I just cannot add any more club affiliations right now.

I totally agree that the CCCA should not expand it's focus just to gain new members, just as I do not think the AACA should expand to accept street rods. Unfortunately I think most car clubs are destined to shrink--no one is going to grow very much or very long IMO. Motoringicons points out that relaxing the standards would probably chase away existing members like himself and I agree with that--that is what has happened as the Pontiac-Oakland Club has shifted to focus on street rods and drag racing. The CCCA's whole reason for being is to focus on elite cars and that makes it exclusive by it's very nature. That may strike some as elitist but allowing later or lesser cars is not the answer. Good luck, Todd C

Edited by poci1957 (see edit history)

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Currently, there are no Chevrolets of any year in the CCCA, and no one is considering including 1957 Chevrolets in the CCCA. Maybe the Pontiac club should includ them as the used the same body.

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Following that line of thinking shouldn't a '48 Buick convertible be accepted as a Full Classic since the body is identical to a '47 Cadillac?

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I would say after reading the comments posted here that for the most part Al was not really speaking for the "club" in his comments in the "BULLETIN". I feel that is good.....I hope that his type of thinking never becomes the "Norm" in the CCCA......period! Dan Dinsmore

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No, the 48 Buick convertible should not be a full classic, but the 48 Buick Roadmasters should be. For reasons unknown to me, the club has been reluctant to includ big Buicks, but the Buick boys have been forcing the issue and many Buicks have been accepted.

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What about the '46-'48 Buick Woodie Wagons? Continuation of a pre-war model and certainly as "Classic" as the T&C. Don't get me wrong, I personally don't think the club should change their emphasis. I'm just playing Devil's advocate for the sake of discussion.

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Currently, there are no Chevrolets of any year in the CCCA, and no one is considering including 1957 Chevrolets in the CCCA. Maybe the Pontiac club should includ them as the used the same body.

I am fully aware of that Dave, but since you pointed it out I changed that reference to make my point more clearly, thanks.

Edited by poci1957 (see edit history)

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I would say after reading the comments posted here that for the most part Al was not really speaking for the "club" in his comments in the "BULLETIN". I feel that is good.....I hope that his type of thinking never becomes the "Norm" in the CCCA......period! Dan Dinsmore

I received my issue of the “BULLETIN” yesterday and was greatly disappointed by the comments of Al (club president’s message) regarding his belief that the majority of CCCA members favor excepting cars of the 50s. I strongly feel that the club should stick to the core beliefs that CCCA was founded on – Classic Era cars. The 50s were a lot of things but to say that some cars of the 50s are “Classic Era” is diluting the foundation of the club to nothing.

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I'm not a CCCA member, but guys I would submit there are very, very few automobiles that might be actually considered "Classic." The notion that something should be considered "Classic" or not be considered "Classic" based upon a period of time is a bit silly if one dwells on what might truly make a car "Classic." I would submit a car to be considered a "Classic" would be one which influenced the entire automobile industry whether that influence was/is from concept of body design, mechanical advances, or having to do with passenger comfort and safety. "Uniqueness" is not the same as "Classic" people.

There is a greater percentage of automobiles which have been produced by someone since the 1890s that are not "Classic" than those which are with respect to the definition expressed above. Just because a car is eye pleasing to some does not mean it is "Classic." A good example of that might be the 1947/48 Chrysler Town & Country, a really unique and beautiful car, also the last production car to have a substantial amount of real wood as part of its body structure, but certainly not classic.

I think anyone would be very hard pressed to even consider most automobiles of the 1920s, 1930s, and 1940s as being "Classic." And what about those '57 Chevy's? Nope, there is nothing classic about them at all. Sorry about that Chevy lovers, but the fact is the '57 Chevy was the last year of a basic design on it's way out. It was also the third year for a V8 OHV engine in Chevy's. But most of all it was the year it lost the styling race with Ford and was outsold. If there was a "Classic" car produced in 1957 it would have to be the '57 Ford retractable hard top or maybe the '57 Mercury Turnpike Cruiser with it's breezeway rear window.

The future of the CCCA does not lie in opening the doors to all sorts of common production cars being considered "Classic" but may lie in coming up with a clear understanding that there have been cars produced subsequent to 1940 whatever, that should be considered "Classics" in the sense of altering the future of automobile production for years to come in one way or another.

Edited by Jim_Edwards (see edit history)

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Jim, not to offend, but I don't think you understand what the CCCA is all about. The cars and the era are one in the same. There cannot be "Classic" cars after WWII because the era ended prior to WWII.

I take the words of a past President seriously as he is someone doing the actual work of the club. However, for me personally I like the club the way it is and hope it is not diluted with post war cars (any more than it already has been).

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Jim, not to offend, but I don't think you understand what the CCCA is all about. The cars and the era are one in the same. There cannot be "Classic" cars after WWII because the era ended prior to WWII.

I take the words of a past President seriously as he is someone doing the actual work of the club. However, for me personally I like the club the way it is and hope it is not diluted with post war cars (any more than it already has been).

With all due respect that view ranks right up there with the notion in the 1800s that the Patent Office should be closed because everything that could possibly be invented had already been invented. It's your club and you guys can do to it what you want. However, I would suggest someone go out and buy a bottle of Bourbon or Campaign to be opened by the last two members as you are misjudging enthusiast of the future. Even worse is assuming that the cars now in member possession will be passed along to someone by some means rather than suffer a fate of becoming estate barn queens and being later declared so much junk is presumptuous. The museums of the country can only absorb so many examples before they say "No Mass."

The future of all vintage car clubs and preservation of automotive history lies solely in creating interest on the part of those who will be around after we are long gone. Without doing what is necessary to entice the younger crowd to gain interest and exposure to what we may revere spells the death of any club.

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Jim,

You are thinking it is a club about cars but it is really a celebration of an era, the "Classic Era" which lasted from roughly 1928 to 1938 (with some rounding errors). Are there some 1950's cars which have mechanical or styling attributes similar to cars of that era? Well yeah, but that's not the point.

Edited by alsancle
spelling (see edit history)

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I think the debate would just move to a different set of cars. For argument's sake, let's say the 50's "Classics" would be the Continental MkII, the 1953 Eldorado, Skylark,Fiesta, and Caribbean, and the SS roofed Eldo Biarritz.

Now the 54 versions of the 4 53 convertibles are all much more production based. Are we going to count them? If the 54 Caribbean is in, isn't the 55-56, a more differentiated car? If the 56 Caribbean is in, the hardtop is in too, right? And since the hardtop is basically a 400, it's in too. And if the 400 is iin, so is the Patrician.

Starting with the 53 Eldo, you can follow a similar chain of GM products.

Do you really want to start with what should be in if the 48 Chrysler T&C is in?

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From the CCCA website, the focus of the club is,:

"As in the beginning, automobiles manufactured during the Grand Classic Era® from 1919 to 1948 remain the primary focus of the club today"

I don't even like the 1948 date, the "Classic Era" to me is pre-WWII.

Everyone's got an opinion on the word classic or "Classic". Opinions aside, the fact is that the year a 1950's car is accepted into the CCCA will be the last year I pay dues to that club, and I'd be willing to bet many share that thought.

You don't bring a Chevrolet to a Model T meet, and there's no need for further dilution of the cars accepted into the CCCA now. There were over a million cars built that meet the definition of the CCCA Classic, and there're are plenty still out there....

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The CCCA just published a wonderful 60th Anniversary book which they just sent to its members. This book talks about the cars, the people and the history of the club. After reading this book, it furthers my belief that the club needs to hold true to its roots and ideas and not to dilute itself into becoming just another big old car club.

Years ago, one of the leading car clubs was the VMCCA-The Veteran Motor Car Club of America. When it was established, it strictly adhered to its appreciation of Veteran (brass-era) vehicles. The club grew further and further away from the older cars, and ironically, now has a membership of old people that basically drive modern-era cars on their events. The club has probably struggled for membership more than any other national car club in America and continues to struggle. I dropped my membership years ago because I did not feel that the bulk of the VMCCA's membership appreciated old cars.

On the other hand, the Horseless Carriage Club of America, which is celebrating its 75th anniversary this year, has never strayed from its Pre-1916 acceptance policy. Over the years that I have been a member (I have been member since I was 12 and now I am 46), there have been people on the board who have tried to modify the pre-1916 policy, but the membership and other board members have never budged. This has resulted in club that has had an overall and continual growth in membership both on a regional and national level and today is probably one of the most active and focused national car clubs in existence with events throughout the country. This totally negates the theory that by allowing newer cars into a club you will attract a younger audience and your membership will grow. Obviously, there is virtually no one that is alive today that can remember pre-1916 cars when they were new-or even used cars for that matter. So, why does this group continue to grow and why is it thriving after 75 years? It grew because they stayed focused, promoted the cars for what they were and stayed true to their roots without giving into the temptation of appealing to the masses. Like all clubs they try to recruit new members on a daily basis, but they have also let the club's foundation speak for itself- kind of like the old phrase "if you build it, they will come." I find it interesting that I see more young people driving and participating in the pre-1916 events then I do at the local cruise nights that are filled with 50s, 60s and later cars which tend to be owned by old guys wearing gold chains that don't interact with the public!

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HCCA now has events for nickel cars - cars up to 1928. Talk about dilution - some of them even have 4 wheel brakes! (And AACA accepts hot rods IF they were raced “in the day.”

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Might we tender an amazingly simple solution? The CCCA should have a cordial, polite form e-response to those wanting a post-1948 car considered referring them to the Milestone Car Society, the Antique Automobile Club of America, the Rolls-Royce Owners Club, the Bentley Drivers Club, the Contemporary Historical Vehicle Society, the Buick Club of America, the Packard Club, the Nash Club, the Cadillac-LaSalle Club, the Walter P. Chrysler Club, the Mercedes Club, the Sports Car Club of America, www.nationalwoodieclub.com, www.ferrariclubofamerica.org,

www.barret-jackson.com,

www.classicmotorcarauctions.com,

www.kruseclassics.com (because it's really all about money and that now vaunted word, classic )

and the myriad existing clubs awaiting their cars with open arms.

This most polite form letter can conclude with a long list of various car clubs' websites.

However, as the CCCA already does, we remind these people in our most cordial form e- or slow mail reply that they are still welcome to join us even if they don't own a CCCA car if they've an interest in CCCA cars.

That's the end of it. It really is.

Now can we get back to discussing CCCA cars?

Haven't seen a Jensen Model H saloon in a looooong time. And wasn't it astounding the quality you got in an Auburn Twelve, especially for the money?

Edited by Su8overdrive (see edit history)

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Dave- The nickel era HCCA events are a regional group-Nickel Era Region- and produce their own tours. The National HCCA and National sponsored tours are still pre-1916, the nickel era cars are not listed in the national HCCA roster.

Su8overdrive-I agree!!!!

Edited by motoringicons (see edit history)

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