MrEarl

Current Issues and Suggestions for a Better BCA

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Ted,

    Your situation seems very simple to me too. 

 

If you don't want it judged, just enter your car in Display Only.

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I was at the General Membership Meeting in Kokomo when Pat Brooks presented his proposal for the Driven Class, to see if there would be enough membership support before he made his formal presentation to the BCA BOD that year.  The general orientation was to motivate more members to drive their Buicks to the meets, other than those which were already entering in the 400 Point Judging Show.  It would give them some recognition for doing so, rather than leaving their Buick at home and getting to the national meet by another method.  In short, a way to get more vehicular participation where there typically was none of that nature, at that time.  It also pre-dates the Archival Class in longevity.

 

After that meeting, I observed an older gentleman bending Pat's ear about ensuring that those in the new class would be "accurate" vehicles with no "alterations" that were not correct for the model year.  Kind of like if he drove his older Buick to the meet sans a/c or an aftermarket sound system, then others ought to be in "the same boat". 

 

When the Driven Class made its first appearance in 2003 at the Plano meet we hosted, I heard some interesting "talk" in the hallways about "having to qualify" to be in the Driven Class.  Many who'd made "upgrades" to make their cars better "distance cruisers" were not allowed in that class.  The mentioned reason was that the BOD desired the cars, basically, meet the 400 Point System orientations for correctness of the particular model year . . . something I didn't really recall being a part of the first proposal, but it seemed to become part of the class structure.  Owners who'd done that didn't really feel they should have to go to the Modified Class as their cars were not "customized" per se, just some mechanical upgrades (alternators where generators used to be, or adapted a/c systems, for example) to make the cars more comfortable and enjoyable to drive longer distances.  Be that as it may.

 

Willis Bell  20811

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I'm ok with anything that encourages more driving. Speaking of more driving, when did we get away from driving events at the Nationals? Now it is all bus tours. Not only is it more fun to drive our cars, but it is one of the best marketing promotions the club can get. Imagine the sight of 100+ Buicks driving to these museums. The public will eat it up. If you didn't drive a Buick to the show, I'm positive you can get a ride with someone else. Good driving memories that I recall from recent Nationals include the amazing drive of over 50 1959 Buicks in Colorado, the drive to the Drive-In in Seattle, the wonderful drive to Jewell in Iowa, etc. I know they didn't to this in Portland, but what a wonderful time it would have been to drive to the falls. Anyway, I think there should be a driving event at every Nationals. I encourage future meet planners to include at least one.

Edited by TxBuicks (see edit history)
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Roy,

 

With the Covered Bridge Drive, we are encouraging the cars being driven.  See additional details on the Calendar section.

 

Depending on the distance to get to Allentown, I think the local tours including Hershey and Philadelphia may better by organized by bus trip, especially Philadelphia where the National Democratic Party has their convention at that same time.  As usual special arrangements are being made for to maximize the time.

 

But, others may  sure want to travel to some of these same sites in small groups.  There is just too much traffic to organize 100, or even 25 car groups with getting lost in traffic.  Except for then cruise-in to Dorney Park. Eight to ten cars, as I have suggested for the covered bridge tours should work.  Then there is the caravan from the west coast is a good option. 

 

There will also be BDE and PWD after tours.

 

John.

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I could not get the "edit" to work, but I also should have include the Reatta group and others that usually take a drive somewhere.  I would be nice to see a short tour of wagons rolling out together.

 

John

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 I know they didn't to this in Portland, but what a wonderful time it would have been to drive to the falls.

 

Thanks to Brian Laurance, the '59 Division did sponsor a small group that did drive the Rowena Loops and the falls. It was fantastic, even though it was a rainy day.  Many of you have seen the Rowena Loops photos of 4 '59 Buicks in the National Meet issue last year.

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I recall that we had a "self-guided driving tour" for those early-arrivers at the 1996 meet in Plano.

 

Driving event/tours can be neat and fun to do, possibly in a "Road Rallye" format, but they have to be laid-out and de-bugged well in advance.  Such things can also be problematic, depending upon just where the National Meet event is . . . in which case bus tours are a better way to do things. 

 

It might be a little difficult to plan and orchestrate, due to time/date/location issues, but how neat might it be for a large group of vintage Buicks to "Welcome" participants of The Great Race to one of their nightly stays . . . as a part of a BCA National Meet in that same location?

 

NTX5467

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I recall that we had a "self-guided driving tour" for those early-arrivers at the 1996 meet in Plano.

 

Driving event/tours can be neat and fun to do, possibly in a "Road Rallye" format, but they have to be laid-out and de-bugged well in advance.  Such things can also be problematic, depending upon just where the National Meet event is . . . in which case bus tours are a better way to do things. 

 

It might be a little difficult to plan and orchestrate, due to time/date/location issues, but how neat might it be for a large group of vintage Buicks to "Welcome" participants of The Great Race to one of their nightly stays . . . as a part of a BCA National Meet in that same location?

 

NTX5467

 

A great idea for the "Great Race".  The Buicktown Chapter did that very thing back a number of years ago when the Great Race made an overnight stop in Flint.  It was pretty neat seeing both sides of downtown Saginaw St lined with Buicks greeting the racers as they came down the main drag at the end of their race day.  We got a lot of smiles from the tired drivers (especially those driving the Buicks!) as we waved and "honked" our welcome. (I think I have some home movies of that event somewhere.)  If I remember right, some of our club members stayed on to help make some late night repairs on a couple of the race cars.

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  I would be nice to see a short tour of wagons rolling out together.

 

Wouldn't the "wagon train" have to be out west or on the prairies, for historical perspective

I have something that would be happy to participate in that.

For any of you who have met my '76 pace car, you'll know a prior owner put Centerline wheels on. Under the current rules, that technically disqualifies the car from a Driven award. However, the Modified folks don't want to give their Driven award to a car with lith little more than different wheels. Happily, the current chair of driven class judging is not as particular about those rules, especially when you drive 1000 miles to the meet.

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Considering that the whole idea behind Centerline-brand wheels was "lightness" for drag racing activities, not to imply that that's ALL they're good for, but I think the (approx.) $800.00 for a set of repro 15x7 Buick road wheels would be a good one.  Although probably not exactly what the car originally came with, but much closer than any Centerline wheel, might be a decent long-term investment.  Be that as it may.

 

One of the "sticking points" of the driven class has, historically, been just how "correct" the vehicle might be, with respect to how it was originally built (per BCA guidelines).  Something like aftermarket wheels is very visible, but an internally-upgraded HEI would probably be noticed only by those that knew what they were looking at, for example, so obviously there might need to be some guidelines as to what's "acceptable" in the Driven Class.

 

When I was doing the judging and classification administration for the Mopar club I'm in, I devised a point system for modifications and how it would affect (via point accumulation) whether the vehicle would be "stock", "street", "custom", or "race".  Then we used some members' cars to check the point break levels to ensure that some cars which were "not enough modifications" didn't show in the same class as "custom" vehicles.  Certainly NOT what many participants were looking for, but when explained to them, they understood it.  It was certainly NOT what the local weekend cruises or indoor shows used, either.

 

In adapting my point system to an "all makes" show, though, there was more resistance as it was "different" as so many of those particular participants were much more used to the weekend show "loose class" format, which they'd built their vehicles around.  But, I still believe the particular orientation I used for "stock" and "street/modified" class differences is good.  Each "mod" had a certain amount of points attached to it.  To be in the "stock" class, no more than about 4 points could be accumulated, 5-19 points was the "street/modified" area.  More than 19, the "custom" area.

 

Basically, I looked for "signals" or the owner wanting to keep the car "stock", but also wanting to do a few things to spiff it up or for "higher-performance/towing" use.  Factory-style chrome valve covers?  OK  Under-dash gauges and/or tach?  OK  Different carb, but OEM replacement?  OK  Factory wheels from another of the same brand of vehicle or OEM spec for a different model?  OK (might need to be some model exceptions for Buicks, though).  If things went past that, it would appear that the owner did not really care about a "stock" vehicle but wanted on "spiffier" that that, as (in the "stock" class)  chrome master cylinder reservoir cover?  XX  Chrome non-stock air cleaner (when not factory equipment)?  XX  Tire size significantly different that OEM?  XX  Aftermarket shifter?  XX  Ride height variations?  XX  You see the picture?    Some vehicles would be right at the edge of being "modified", but didn't go over.  The owner's intentions were mirrored in what things they'd changed on the vehicle.

 

Still, there is a HUGE gray area between the Driven Class and the least-modified Modified class vehicles, by observation.  Still, though, the Driven Class should not really be oriented toward altered vehicles which are not altered-enough for the Modified class.

 

IF the Driven Class became "Driven 1" and "Driven 2", then that gray area could be decreased for those that had made mechanical upgrades to their vehicles, leaving those that had made cosmetic upgrades/customization to their vehicles for the Modified class.  Let the D1 group be the desired vehicles "lured" into the Driven Class, which could be upgraded to the 400 Point Judging with a little care and expertise, which is one aspect of the Driven Class's originally-communicated purpose.  Let the D2 group be those that made mechanical upgrades (dual-circuit brakes, electronic fuel injection, electronic ignition system, transmission changes, alternators, aftermarket a/c kits, electric power steering, deeper tinted windows, seat belts, radial tires with possible aftermarket wheels of appropriate stock sizing, aftermarket sound systems, etc.) for the expressed intent of being cross-country-comfortable, but NOT in the total realm of a "street rod/street machine" -- look stock, but act like something newer.  Then let the vehicles with custom paint, custom interiors, custom body work, altered ride height, significantly-altered from stock wheel/tire packages, and other modifications be in the Modified class (where they belong), although driven to the meet.

 

I don't know that I totally agree with a Driven Class vehicle also being eligible to also be in the 400 Point Judging.  The INTENT of those classes is NOT the same, to me.  An "either - or" situation ONLY.  I DO appreciate a 400 Point car, even a Gold Senior, being driven to the meets (as some have done for a many meets, now), as to me, THAT is the "Gold Standard" for a great restoration (that's durable!) and using the vehicle in a manner in which it was designed . . . AND maintaining that status for many years.

 

And then, somewhere along the line, the Archival Class appeared.  Perhaps it should be termed "Survivor Class" as other groups do?  Definition-wise, all 400 Point System-judged vehicles are "archival", especially the GOLD-level vehicles (that are NOT over-restored), to me.

 

NTX5467 

Edited by NTX5467 (see edit history)
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The '59 Division has been putting out calendars for a number of years. Good idea, but with a distributed club, cost of shipping could make it less attractive for a smaller ticket item. Now, if they are prepared in time for the annual National meet (or celebration) then a few could sell there and perhaps more efficient shipping using the local chapters as distributors (with a small cut perhaps?) could work better. That said, I don't think it makes sense to step on the toes of the '59 Division. Otherwise, I really like the idea.

Larry, I may get a mailing tube and send you one of mine

As for the wheels, I spent about $5000 this summer for three sets of the specially widened wheels that were used on the '75 & '76 Century Pace Car replicas. They happened to come with cars attached. I will be spending more to get the correct-equivalent tires put on in the spring and then I'll be much happier with Spirit. Unfortunately the Indy tires aren't made in the correct size any more.

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Larry, I may get a mailing tube and send you one of mine

 

 

Derek,

 

If you send me a calendar, I would not know where to put it.

 

Are you planning on coming through Flint/ Detroit on the way to Allentown?  If you do, I could show you my shop near Flint.

Edited by Larry Schramm (see edit history)

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Grin. Most folks usually put them on a wall.

We haven't defined our path yet. It's far enough that we may be inclined to take the most expedient route, but it would be nice to slow down a bit and see things / people. I'll keep your suggestion in mind.

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How does one submit items to be posted on the BCA national website? I wanted to post our upcoming Mason-Dixon car show. There were only 2 items shown on the 2016 calendar and one being the Allentown meet.

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Larry,

 

If you submit for the Bugle, it will, by magic, be included on the web site.  Not really magic, I think now these get forwarded to Peter to be included.

 

John

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Great minds think alike,  as I thought this was the way it was too John, but Pete Phillips said not so. According to Pete members need to send to both the Bugle and the website.

 

I guess that's what you and I get for thinking when we're not use to it. :rolleyes:;)

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Lamar:

Thanks for that. I had already sent our announcement into the Bugle although it will not show up until the March issue. Having to fight an uphill battle within our chapter about having our own website I like to check on it and try to keep things current. So when I go to the BCA site and there are hardly any events shown I thought it could use some more. I have already posted the event (our June 4th Car Show) on the tours etc. heading.

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It's very easy for me to send Peter G a list of "coming events" that we print in the Bugle each month, so I'll try to remember to do that. Yesterday I sent him the list that will be in the February issue and I notice it is already posted on the BCA website calendar so I hope this helps everyone. —Cindy

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Tha's great Cindy. For that you win the first ever "Buick - Plays Well With Others Award". :)

 

 

playswellwithotherscrpd_zpseaastrqd.jpg

 

 

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it's a shame Pete & Cindy don't do office work as well - the BCA would run like a well oiled machine if they were the BCA headquarters   Literally the only aspect of the BCA you don't hear complaints about.

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You are the MAN, Lamar, so I guess you can delcare awards before the forum gathering in Allentown.  Where did you ever find that?  Hope there is no neon associated with that sign.

 

John 

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Lamar looks better in a bikini than I would have expected.

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