TTR

Long distance driving/traveling with vintage cars

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Posted (edited)
2 hours ago, JACK M said:

Not lately, (knock on wood).

 .

Maybe the exception is spare tires for the trailer. I now carry two and don't have flats any more. Go figure. 

 

 

If you ever check our larger enclosed car hauler trailer you'll likely find three, or even four mounted spares for that trailer, and probably a couple for the other trailer which carries a different size wheel/tire. That way we can help other folks who may not have planned ahead. Sometimes there will also be one or more unmounted new tires for backup - or for loaners

Tire failures typically don't happen in convenient locations or at convenient times, 

More likely you'll be on a desolate stretch of remote highway - just 10 minutes after the tire store closed for the weekend.

Carrying a 2nd, 3rd, or more spare ensures avoiding a potential source of "Transportus-Interruptus" so you can arrange for a replacement when and where it is convenient, affordable, and with tires sporting a more current Date-Code than might be found otherwise. You can always phone ahead to a dealer or a wholesale club to have fresh tires delivered to your interim destination, a few days down the road. Running without a backup spare is an exercise in potential waste of time, and sometimes a recipe for disaster when that 2nd tire decides to separate  the tread, or pick up a chunk of shrapnel. 

 

BLOO noted above, that he does not plan to break down, he plans NOT to break down.

I agree that is an excellent approach, and try to do the same. 

I do, however, subscribe to AAA Premium, with RV coverage for us and for our grandson,

planning never to need it, but knowing it is there for that rare occasion. 

We have used it a few times for a tow vehicle, and a trailer haul,

including the Ford Diesel blown Turbo on last September's jaunt from New Orleans to Twin Falls, Idaho.

Peace of mind does go a long way-

beside my own tools, skill, and experience,

having our AAA card and a credit card are also decent things to have in our "tool box". 

Edited by Marty Roth (see edit history)
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Benefits of AACA Membership.

Posted (edited)

Here's how I prepared for our honeymoon road trip of 15 days and 2756 miles to Grand Tetons and Yellowstone couple of years ago.

 

All items on the table in front of the car are either actual gear, luggage, spares. tools or simulate it, like the cardboard boxes equating her luggage. Only thing not pictured is the duffel bag filled with my clothing, etc tied to frame rails in front of radiator can be seen in other photos.

The car received a full inspection & service along with set of new tires & tubes. Two different size (used) spare tires were strapped on the modified OEM spare tire bracket. 

Gear & luggage.jpg

 

+/- 1000 miles into it.

+:-1K miles into it..jpg

 

+/-2000 miles into it

+:-2K miles .jpg

 

Also, it might be worth keep in mind that the car was (re)built to this configuration about 30 years and tens of thousands of miles ago from a literal "basket case" missing half of its coach work and almost all running gear (it had been someone else's parts car) by somewhat inexperienced, but rather enthusiastic hobbyist with hardly any tools or equipment, let alone a shop and with exception of paint work (which was done about a year or so later) it got done in about one year, even with only couple of hours allotted/dedicated to it few nights a week.

 

Oh, and the car has pretty much nothing electrical or mechanical features that weren't available or introduced by early-'50s (1952/-53?).

Edited by TTR (see edit history)
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when you break down, knowing AAA is in your back pocket, you can have the assurance that the worst that can happen is you get to ride in a tow truck all the way home!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

 

not a bad feeling.

 

used it on my 2000 silverado when the fuel pump went out. they towed me 200 miles, and I had a free 200 mile tow included in my package. yes, free is a misnomer...........

 

at least I didnt have to call anyone up, get them out of bed and bother them.  I dealt with the fuel pump the next day.

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And, AAA is more than just towing, or bringing a gas can. They offer lots of discounts to help make trips more affordable.

 

And other discounts when not traveling. The misses recently had to get an eye exam and new glasses. The AAA discount at her eye doctor/eye glass place saved her more than the cost of several years of our AAA dues.

 

Paul

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Don't forget their TRIP-TIK assistance, State & City Maps, hotel booking, vacation planning, etc-

all this can be tied into enjoying your old car, but your preparation is still the key to being able to enjoy cross-country travel.

 

I rarely have to depend on my AAA membership,

but am glad my daughter and grandson have it when they're on the road-

 

And please remember that AAA is the primary sponsor of the annual Revival Glidden Tour

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Posted (edited)

Thanks Ben.

 

Just get on that road and hopefully our paths will cross, so we can share a meal and drink while swapping vintage car travel memories & other related stories. 

😋

 

Besides, for me, the real hero on these trips in recent years is my wife for her ability/willingness to put up with lack of creature comforts/conveniences & other nonsense of an 88 year old jalopy.

 

She even occasionally makes quite convincing claims to her family, friends and others that these road trips wouldn’t have been half as fun or memorable in some less exciting or modern vehicle, although she keeps reminding me to finish the ‘57 New Yorker Convertible as she wouldn’t mind a trip or two in it someday.

She even claims it’s something she wouldn’t also mind driving on those occasions. 

 

Not bad from someone who, before tangling up with me, didn’t acknowledge or afforded thoughts on old cars much beyond the previous make/model she periodically traded in for a new one.

Edited by TTR (see edit history)
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Saturday March 3rd 2018 we were in Dandenong Victoria to finalise the purchase of “Black Beauty” , my 1938 Buick.  Getting her home was an 800km (500mile) one way trip to Encounter Bay, with a short visit to “Riviera Lane” ( Tom Kunek) to check out his ‘65 Riviera restoration before starting our way home.

 

We had had driven over the night before in my Subaru, and my mate Darryl was to follow me back, so we had a Plan B if something happened. We had a few tools, oil and water.

 

Apart from the fuel and lunch stops, everything went fine, cruising on about 45mph, meaning it took a bit longer to get home. I learnt that the steering lock worked and more importantly, how to get it unlocked if your stuck in the petrol station 😃😃😃😃

 

I also learnt that  the 1938 original headlights and dash lights were dreadful, pretty scary in fact, as the last part of the journey was at night, which slowed us down considerably. Needless to say they got on the priority list to fix when home.

 

But we got home safely in the early hours of Sunday morning, pretty tired from the drive. Apart from the headlight issue, the journey went well which really helps inspire confidence in your vehicle.

 

And the drive was an adventure and one you don’t forget easily.

 

Rodney 😀😀😀😀😀😀

 

 

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+1 on AAA - Platinum  for me is $132 and includes a 250 mile tow. That covers most of Florida from Orlando.

The 88 Reatta is a great road car, 70 mph is 1900 rpm, has a sunroof, AC, and can carry as much as shown on the table though just has one spare, and is 32.

 

Considering all of the marque forums, perhaps the General Discussion should be split in two: pre and post war (your choice of wars) ?

 

comb.jpg

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8 hours ago, rodneybeauchamp said:

And the drive was an adventure and one you don’t forget easily.

 

Rodney 😀😀😀😀😀😀

 

Now all you got to do is go out there with it for more adventures and great memories. 👍

Just don't forget to share them here. 😉 

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 Get AAA Towing coverage and fix the flaws and keep driving them until you gain some confidence.

 

There is a wonderful world out there at 45 MPH and you'll meet really friendly people. Your local  club  may have local rides you can join in with others, there is safety in numbers.

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Make sure you have a jack that will work regarding a fully deflated tire - interestingly, many are too tall for such (or at least are when you want to put them in a safe location under car verses risking). 

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Absolutely! Especially for rear wheel flats on skirted fender 1930s cars. I now carry one scissors jack and one bottle jack in each car, plus one or two 15" square pieces of plywood as a base. The scissors jack gets the axle off the ground, and the bottle jack lifts the adjoining portion of the frame to get clearance between tire and fender.

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Havr owned my 47 monarch Canadian made for a!most two years and I have put amost three thousand miles on it looking forward to to an early summer and more rides

On 5/30/2019 at 6:44 PM, TTR said:

Hi, I’m new here but not to antique/classic/vintage vehicles.

I also wish to apologize if any of my content in this topic offends some members/readers here.

 

Actually I’ve been seriously involved with them for over 40 years as an enthusiast/hobbyist/owner (of dozens) and professionally +/-35 years.

More than anything, including rebuilding or restoring them or their components, I’ve always loved driving classic/vintage cars, a lot, and have probably racked up at least 200.000-300.000 miles between all I’ve driven and/or driven in past 4+ decades.

 

I’ve driven 10 or so trips across the continental U.S. and maybe another 10 or more with half that distance in vintage cars from early ‘30s to early ‘70s, although latter I view more like a “modern” cars.

 

When younger (late teens-to-forties), I preferred cruising in large ‘50s/’60s American “land yachts”, but in past ten or so years I’ve gone back to my original, early teen years interests of ‘50s and older sports cars and early Hot Rods, driving them “spiritedly” on scenic, twisty countryside back roads or 2-lane mountain highways, etc. for which my “weapon of choice” has been my ‘32 Plymouth PB Sports Roadster I built to a “period correct*" early-‘50s Hot Rod close to 30 years + tens of thousands of miles ago. 

 

In past few years I’ve also done several long distance leisure road trips with it, including a 15 day/2750 mile (SoCal to Yellowstone and back) vacation with the wife and we’re now preparing for another +/- 3 weeks/3000+ mile trip this summer.

 

So my question is, are there many members here that actually enjoy to drive their early-‘50s or older, especially pre-war cars extensively for private leisure travel, i.e. without participating in some organized antique/classic car event, show or tour, etc. ?

 

*Pretty much every component or technological feature in this car is something that was or would’ve been available in the early ‘50s, incl. 6Volt electrical system, bias-ply tires w/tubes, no creature comforts or power assist of any kind, etc.

Only noticeable deviation from “period correct” might be a pair of (lap-type) seat belts, although those too existed in period and before..

Other “period correct Hot Rod” modifications include ‘52 DeSoto 276, ‘49/‘52 Dodge 3-spd, ‘51 Dodge rear axle, ‘37 Plymouth steering gear+ wheel, custom-/hand-built (by yours truly) alloy-bucket seats and (hydraulic) telescopic shocks.

 

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3 hours ago, 47Monarch said:

Havr owned my 47 monarch Canadian made for a!most two years and I have put amost three thousand miles on it looking forward to to an early summer and more rides

 

Please consider sharing here any and all long distance travel experiences/stories you've done and/or will do with it in the future.

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Posted (edited)

As it has now become clear we have to (AGAIN ! 😞) postpone our +/- 3 week, 3000+ mile vintage road trip originally planned to start in June, I'm going to take more opportunities with local/shorter excursion, like the one I enjoyed yesterday. Had invited three friends, 2 with vintage cars, 1 with a H.D. to join me, but all wu**ied out at the last minute. 

Racked up 120+ miles, half of which was on very scenic, superbly enjoyable (= twisty) mountain roads of CA SR243 & SR74, former having recently been re-opened after major repairs + long stretch of re-pavement, providing for smoother climbing for spirited efforts. 😉

 

Got on the road right at dawn and after few pit stops (for “fluid exchange” and/or photo-ops) reached the trailhead parking at  +/-6000 ft elevation about 1.5 hours later, spent few hours enjoying peace & quiet on hiking trails, then drove to Idyllwild town center area for a pick-nick lunch in a park + leisurely stroll around the town, enjoying a tasty cigar before heading down the other side of the mountain and back home. 
 

On the way back, narrowed the scale of distancing by stopping by a (vintage car) wrecking yard couple of friends own & operate to see if by any chance they would have a 64 year old “ hens teeth” transmission I need for a clients project. After discovering they actually had one and will deliver to my shop in a week or two, spent couple of more hours chatting with them about the current state of world we live in and trying to predict what future it'll have.


Roadside pit stop (for “fluid exchange” + photos) up on the mountains: 

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Snack break view, on the trail, at 6500-7000 ft elevation:

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On a (fairly steep) hillside trail:

6D5F6E2B-A109-481C-B0CA-AA4BE6C60538.jpeg

Edited by TTR (see edit history)
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BSA 441 Victor land.

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Posted (edited)
1 hour ago, padgett said:

BSA 441 Victor land.

While I didn’t see any BSAs, there was (as always) a fair amount of motorcycles up on those roads and even now with the town of Idyllwild mostly shut down, many groups of riders were taking a break there.
 

Only real sad thing I notice on these excursions is the lack of other vintage cars being seriously driven around.
One would think in the place like SoCal, with its climate, great network of cool roads and alleged “car culture” there’d be more, but...
 

Edited by TTR (see edit history)

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Late to this topic, but its close to home for me. I probably am repeating others but I thought I would weigh in. 

 

I have been trying to get into a position for some time that allows me to drive my old car wherever and whenever I want. I bought an "expensive" car hoping it would help with that only to have a serious engine issue develop shortly after. It has been 5 years since then and the car is apart and money has been spent and with luck it will be back together in a few months. In the mean time, I purchased a second cheap car hoping to use that one for the same job but it has been stuck in Indiana due to the virus. Previously I was not able financially to take on another antique car and when I finally could .... you get the picture. 

 

I also have a 1956 vehicle. It has been extensively rebuilt and I drive it all over. Its a land rover and I have a small group of friends and we take old land rovers all over. Baja, death valley, black rock deserts, eastern oregon high desert, moab, sierras, anywhere. We have some issues, but overall they just go and go and often make it home even when severely broken. My goal is cross country antique auto camp trip. Antique cars to baja, antique cars to death valley, antique car anywhere I want to go. I am a lousy mechanic and I am lazy. I dont really like working on old greasy rust piles but as Matt says, the frustrations of this hobby are small compared to the reward. I have found that getting a slightly beat up car that is reliable is the best option for me. You can drill holes in it, you can bonk it on rocks and hang things on it and crack the paint and its ok. You will grow to love a car that has wear and tear from your trips. 

 

I have a "cheap" old car now that cost me 7,000 dollars. My other car friends and I realized that the guy in the 1928 dodge who comes on our tours has just as much fun as the guy in the 350,000 dollar KB lincoln. Just get in it and drive. The worst possible thing is that you have to come home in a different car. Thats not so bad and its quite a good memory to solve your own problems. 

 

Here are a few pics of the lincoln getting put to work before it had to come apart. I hope to get back to it soon. Also one of the land rover broken in eastern oregon on our winter camp trip. Just go. 

 

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Posted (edited)
15 hours ago, Linus Tremaine said:

Late to this topic, but its close to home for me. I probably am repeating others but I thought I would weigh in. 

 

I have been trying to get into a position for some time that allows me to drive my old car wherever and whenever I want. I bought an "expensive" car hoping it would help with that only to have a serious engine issue develop shortly after. It has been 5 years since then and the car is apart and money has been spent and with luck it will be back together in a few months. In the mean time, I purchased a second cheap car hoping to use that one for the same job but it has been stuck in Indiana due to the virus. Previously I was not able financially to take on another antique car and when I finally could .... you get the picture. 

 

I also have a 1956 vehicle. It has been extensively rebuilt and I drive it all over. Its a land rover and I have a small group of friends and we take old land rovers all over. Baja, death valley, black rock deserts, eastern oregon high desert, moab, sierras, anywhere. We have some issues, but overall they just go and go and often make it home even when severely broken. My goal is cross country antique auto camp trip. Antique cars to baja, antique cars to death valley, antique car anywhere I want to go. I am a lousy mechanic and I am lazy. I dont really like working on old greasy rust piles but as Matt says, the frustrations of this hobby are small compared to the reward. I have found that getting a slightly beat up car that is reliable is the best option for me. You can drill holes in it, you can bonk it on rocks and hang things on it and crack the paint and its ok. You will grow to love a car that has wear and tear from your trips. 

 

I have a "cheap" old car now that cost me 7,000 dollars. My other car friends and I realized that the guy in the 1928 dodge who comes on our tours has just as much fun as the guy in the 350,000 dollar KB lincoln. Just get in it and drive. The worst possible thing is that you have to come home in a different car. Thats not so bad and its quite a good memory to solve your own problems. 

 

Here are a few pics of the lincoln getting put to work before it had to come apart. I hope to get back to it soon. Also one of the land rover broken in eastern oregon on our winter camp trip. Just go. 

 

36922627_908172345436_465776073536176128_o (1).jpg

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Thank you for contributing to this thread.

If you have anything else you care to share, especially experiences/stories of travels with your Lincoln, I'm sure there are many of us who'd love to read more details about them.

 

P.S. Damn, the selection of that camp site bar makes me want to run into you for long evening of newly minted friendships and tall stories next to a camp fire... 

... I'll bring cigars and additional adult beverage varietals. 😁

Edited by TTR (see edit history)
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yes, the car bar is an important part of my camp. 

 

When I got the lincoln it had not really been run in about 5 years. I cleaned out the crank case and fiddled with the vacuum tank and it was pretty simple to get going. I drove it around town quite a lot before any long distance. The first place I went was over a really badly deteriorated paved road and along dirt. It started dying constantly due to all the rust and junk in the tank shaking free as I drove over all the bumps.  Fortunately  it has a screen filter under the drivers seat that you can unscrew and clean out. It was just annoying. 

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11 hours ago, Linus Tremaine said:

yes, the car bar is an important part of my camp. 

 

When I got the lincoln it had not really been run in about 5 years. I cleaned out the crank case and fiddled with the vacuum tank and it was pretty simple to get going. I drove it around town quite a lot before any long distance. The first place I went was over a really badly deteriorated paved road and along dirt. It started dying constantly due to all the rust and junk in the tank shaking free as I drove over all the bumps.  Fortunately  it has a screen filter under the drivers seat that you can unscrew and clean out. It was just annoying. 

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While I haven’t camped since I got done with military duties nearly 40 years ago and tend to prefer a nice, comfy bed and indoor plumbing for overnight accommodations, I have to say your gear and set-up sure looks inviting enough to consider spending a night or two “roughing it”.😉

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Posted (edited)

While (again) not a “long distance travel” experience, i managed another great +/-150 mile social isolation (vintage) drive and terrific 3 hour nature hike in Cleveland National Forest today.
Got on the road at dawn, first heading to Ortega Hwy (by Lake Elsinore) for some hill climb exercises, then to little further south to  Tenaja Falls area trails for a hike and peaceful stream side lunch comprised of Nordic style rye bread sandwiches and a bottle of very tasty weiß bier from München, before heading back.
Once home, snacked on some grilled chicken & brie, accompanied by another weiß bier. Anejo Tequila & Oliva MB3 for dessert.

 

Note the flock of Vultures on the tree behind. Waiting for their breakfast to appear on the fields below ?

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Close-up. Actually, there were several flocks on several nearby trees.

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Several miles of super cool, old hillside roads leading to/from Tenaja Falls parking area, at times barely

wide enough for two cars, growth obscured & twisty enough to force speed being kept below 20MPH

(mainly due to potential encounters with other traffic).

Could easily be much more fun (and dangerous ?) if closed for other traffic. 😉

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“Look Mom, Top of the World !”. Road and trailhead parking far in the distance, in the valley below .

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Lunch break (rye bread & wheat beer😞

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Edited by TTR (see edit history)
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Next weekend will likely be dedicated to test drives with couple of old Italian 4-cam V12s, so more like work than play.  😞

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My wife and I drove from VA Beach up to Hershey, stopping overnight near DC on I-495West.  We toured the Gettysburg Civil War battlefield in the car and stayed with my brother in Carlisle until the show (blissfully driving, not thinking of the miracle that a 50 year old car was doing so well).  I didn't know until we got to the show that the car developed a power steering leak...and all of the vendors had left by Saturday.  My brother bandaged it up tightly, and we added fluid all of the way home.  I was on edge but we made it home safely where I could order and wait 2 weeks for another P/S line to come in. 

It was an enjoyable ride though, driving these cars the way you are supposed to.  I think the next time I'll have the wife in her car in case we run into an issue.  I guess we were lucky on that trip!

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