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Few years ago the Reatta and Allante marque forums were very active but now new posts are marginal at best. Is this common to other marque forums or is it just GM.

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All fourms eb (or is it ebb?)and flow depending on new interests ,rediscovery,who needs what? and how to questions. Maybe the point in time you mention was a high point of newbee acquisitions and questions that follow etc. Then the dust settles.

Look at the old topics...was or were they based on random BS or edification..

Once ,who every is caught up..it will stall till new cars are found by new people or a serious trouble comes up,but that maybe directed to a general forum,which I notice(IS) what happens as more folk hang out there..lurking

 

 I don't even recall these cars you mention so I bet there are not hundreds of new want to know and needs things  requiring lots of on going post.

 

Info on many older but not ancient cars is more plentiful and their repair easier to find on the web that some forums are really not even needed but for the "I got one too factor" after that what is there to say..? 

"What color is yours?"

 

 

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I think the Reatta and Alante forums were very in vogue when the vehicles were 10 years old and in need of maintenance or parts to keep them on the road.  Now they're 20-30+ years old their popularity has declined dramatically. Maybe partially due to the inability to keep them on the road.  In particular I think the dash and electronics are not easy to maintain, and without them the cars are no longer as road worthy.

 

Personal opinion... potentially very wrong. :)
 

 

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The brass car forum is also quite low traffic these days { and the HCCA forum as well }. But at least a couple of us regular AACA forum readers are also dyed in the wool brass car nuts .  I am not active with my project at the present time except still searching for history, literature, photo's etc. So not much to talk about other than much more general hobby car subjects. My parts hunting is at a near standstill until the covid related border situation is resolved.  So other than posts in the general forum and a bit of what is it , not very much for me to comment on these days.

 

Greg

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"I don't even recall these cars" Interesting that the Cadillac Allante and Buick Reatta have been forgotten. Reatta forum here goes back to the last century and has 741 pages. Some were interested. Allante ran from 1988 to 1993 when a $50k Cadillac was unusual. Are at least three different major vendors who have many parts, all of the factory service and parts manuals are available on .pdf or in print, and are several on both Craigslist and Facebook.

 

Guess am surprised at the lack of interest these days. OTOH like everything else can blame it on the flu.

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Later model cars like the Reatta and Allante have their own active discussion boards outside AACA.   I might guess these are quiet on AACA because those other boards became well established as the go-to places for those Marques prior to the AACA recognizing them as “antiques”.

 

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We've never been able to get Oldsmobile people into the forums AACA provides for them. Couldn't even get a mention in the two major clubs' magazines or websites to steer people to them. It's not often I give up but I got tired of beating my head against a wall.

 

I can't even get a response from current club management about trying to revitalize the club geographic zone I'm in, and seems to me that ought to be a priority if the Oldsmobile clubs plan to survive.

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1 hour ago, Peter Gariepy said:

I think the Reatta and Alante forums were very in vogue when the vehicles were 10 years old and in need of maintenance or parts to keep them on the road.  Now they're 20-30+ years old their popularity has declined dramatically. Maybe partially due to the inability to keep them on the road.  In particular I think the dash and electronics are not easy to maintain, and without them the cars are no longer as road worthy.

 

Personal opinion... potentially very wrong. :)
 

 

While the electronics in the Allantes can be a bugger, it's the engune that really hurts them. The HT's and Northstars in the Allante are pretty fragile, and the Northstar is only slightly better as far as I'm concerned, which is too bad because it should have been one of Cadillac's best motors. They had a bad habit of stretching head bolts which of course results in chaos. Reattas dont have that problem with those near bulletproof 3.8's they got.

 

Interestingly, every time I drive an Allante, and I've probably driven atleast 10, I'm always surprised and pretty impressed by how nice the are to drive, and could understand how some buyers could have been lured away from the SL Merc they were about to buy and get into the Cadillac instead. I don't think they're necessarily better than an SL, but different, and almost as refined. 

 

 

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That is true with the Studebaker Drivers Club forum as well, but I believe most of it is from over-moderation, and a needless switch to a new platform that is very unfriendly, and rather hard to read as it doesn't make use of the full monitor screen.  Whenever I post anything, I always type in bold print so it is visible!

 

Craig

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The "Newsletter" section of our forum has

much less use than it once did.  It's intended

for AACA regional editors to discuss ideas that

make good newsletters.  I estimate it is down by

60% for some reason--and many of the recent

postings are just announcements by a club officer

or two.  The most recent single page

of listed postings covers almost 4 years of activity!

 

On the other hand, the various Buick categories 

seem to be doing very well.  There is plenty of 

interest and activity.

Edited by John_S_in_Penna (see edit history)
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Not to keep beating the Allante horse ( I loved the looks of them when  new, still do and have thought at times about owning one, but....) but I think it may be a bit too new for most Allante/Reatta owners to spend much time on the AACA forum. They may very well have forums of their own that are active. I am pretty active with second gen firebirds, and even though these cars are approaching 50+ yrs old, I dont think there are a lot of owners that belong to the AACA, at least in my travels. I believe the general perception is that AACA is for 'old cars', the stereotypical Model A, etc.  And as much as I love the AACA and its forum I can understand that viewpoint.  Almost seems that the general populous of the forum doesnt recognize many cars made after the war.

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I will add, from what I have read in other places, forum traffic is generally overall down, FB seems to have many groups for every type of specific interest out there, a lot of car stuff I understand. I will loose all contact with this hobby before I go to FB though.

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14 hours ago, Peter Gariepy said:

I think the Reatta and Alante forums were very in vogue when the vehicles were 10 years old and in need of maintenance or parts to keep them on the road.  Now they're 20-30+ years old their popularity has declined dramatically. Maybe partially due to the inability to keep them on the road.  In particular I think the dash and electronics are not easy to maintain, and without them the cars are no longer as road worthy.

 

Personal opinion... potentially very wrong. :)
 

 

I agree Peter. Having owned 3 Allante's and 1 Reatta I have no interest in them anymore at all. The GM Teves brake system, the crappy dash, and lack of parts did me in. The Cadi was the worst built so called luxo-sports car of it's time. The worst convertible roof design ever!  At the same time you could buy a Chevy Cavalier convertible that had a flawless working power convertible top. The Allante' was a PITA manual top that didn't fold up properly most of time. On a car that cost almost triple the price of a Cavalier.

 The Reatta was marginally better but still an embarrassment for the world's largest car maker at the time. A real shame they didn't get them right, such potential!

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2 hours ago, 8E45E said:

That is true with the Studebaker Drivers Club forum as well, but I believe most of it is from over-moderation, and a needless switch to a new platform that is very unfriendly, and rather hard to read as it doesn't make use of the full monitor screen.  Whenever I post anything, I always type in bold print so it is visible!

 

Craig

I agree.  I don't find the SDC forum particularly inspiring at all.  Too "fancy".

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2 hours ago, TAKerry said:

They may very well have forums of their own that are active.

 

I have a forum exclusively for Reattas and it's not very active. www.reattaowner.com/forum   With only about 5000 Reattas still on the road there are too many Reatta sites and facebook groups and not enough people interested for them all to be active. I suspect that is true for Alantes and many other cars as well.

 

 

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2 hours ago, TAKerry said:

I will loose all contact with this hobby before I go to FB though.

Hell will freeze over before I go back to subversive FB.

In fact, I’ve stopped all regular communication with relatives and acquaintances who’ve been sucked into that reality-black hole.


Let me paint a vivid picture - I recently stayed with an Alzheimer’s patient. It was HELL. I always knew Alzheimer’s was about memory, I didn’t know that dementia induced PSYCHOSIS and delusions were about 80% of it.

It was easier dealing with her than it is dealing with people sucked into FB —and she tried burning the house down twice and tried poisoning my dog on a daily basis for 6 weeks.

I am NOT joking.

Edited by Ben P.
Clarity (see edit history)
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58 minutes ago, Mark Shaw said:

The BrassBuicks site is very active and the HCCA Face Book site has multiple posts every day. 

BB@BrassBuicks.groups.io | Home

 

I agree about Brass Buicks. I don't have a Brass Buick { just a pile of B55 parts, about 1/3 of a car } so most of what is discussed there is quite specific to Buicks that I don't own , probably will never own. But yes it is a reasonably active site if you are a Buick owner.

 Not a Facebooker at all. I wasn't aware the HCCA facebook site was popular. Actually I wasn't even aware there was a HCCA FB site. I guess that partially explains why the HCCA forums are very low use. Ben P and I seem to be on about the same page regarding FB.

When I look on the HCCA site I don't even see a FB link.  How does a non facebooker even find it ?

Greg

Edited by 1912Staver (see edit history)
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Interesting, my 88 Reatta I bought in 2001 has been in the front garage (daily drivers) for most of its life, most reliable car I've had & what need fixed, I fixed. Did reprogram the computer to run 180-190F but that is biggest difference. Since then have had A Bunch (tm) of other Reattas mostly convertibles. Do now have a pair of SLK retractables (5 speed man and automagic) but have no trunk space with top down.

 

Thought about it for years but during The Big Shutdown picked up a pair of 89 Allantes, both with about 60k miles and both with hardtops. One very nice and one with a bit of sun damaged paint. Both nice interiors and cold AC. Lots less than $10k. For both. Old enough for cheap plates and insurance. Both have HT 4.5 (very reliable) and F7 (essentially a 4T60) trans. Both have "improved" convertible tops but did have to build a winch/hoist to remove the hardtop. Many Reatta parts fit. Have a spare center stack. Unlike the 165hp Reatta, the Allantes have 200hp/273 lb-ft torque which is "enough".

 

Lotsa mythconceptions. Specifically did not want Northstar (first year, as many leaks as TSBs, like Quad-4 took about a decade to get torque sequence right, only has 17 lb-ft more torques than 4.5). Wish both Reatta and Allante had same ABS (may wind up that way) but both working fine. Have all factory service manuals and a parts book on .pdf and in print for 89. Do tend to research cars I am interested in very deeply before purchase. Many new and used parts available.

 

Do look at facebook marketplace occasionally but not active, life is busy enough.

 

That said am on three different Allante forums (including one AACA forum) and new posts are rare. Reatta is active but nowhere near what it was (most of my posts were on Reatta forum).

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The decline is probably true, but how much is real and how much is based on a switch to a different platform, like Facebook. In the case of the "Studebaker Driver's Club," the long standing club forum is in a battle for the soul of the people who use social media. Studebaker, because of some unique models, relative low purchase price and available parts has a strong following, but the focus is not always on restoring or maintaining as original. I suspect that most marques are having some of the same changeover, more or less, depending on their owner's interests.

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"For sale" certainly is diluted by other media but answers to questions/problems are usually on specialists forums.

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It is probably "herd competency". As the knowledge gets shared, things get fixed, and preventive measures are learned everyone is just off enjoying their cars.

 

I know I just go and fix stuff, rarely referring to the shop manuals or references.

 

Although I did buy a 7400 page digital BMW manual recently, not many to share it with, though. Smaller herd.

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Forum discussion has to be stimulated. I'm very interested in steam boats and cars. When I went looking for online discussion about steamboats, there was nothing but a few dead forums. I kept checking back every few weeks and there was just an occasional "Where is everyone?" posts. I just started posting there, posting pictures of my project, asking questions that went unanswered etc. Eventually, people started responding and then more threads were started and more people got involved, and today, ten years later, it's still relatively active considering the obscurity of that hobby.

 

The point is if you're checking in just to read and be entertained, it's your fault there is nothing to read, have to contribute to stimulate conversation and grow content.

 

As they say at the nudist colony "You gotta be one to see one" or something like that. 😁

 

Ron

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On 3/27/2021 at 6:02 AM, TAKerry said:

I will add, from what I have read in other places, forum traffic is generally overall down, FB seems to have many groups for every type of specific interest out there, a lot of car stuff I understand. I will loose all contact with this hobby before I go to FB though.

 

AACA forum traffic is still solid. Although he individual forums have their ups and downs.

 

 

On 3/27/2021 at 7:43 AM, dictator27 said:

I agree.  I don't find the SDC forum particularly inspiring at all.  Too "fancy".

 

I try my darnedest to keep this forum "simple".  Hope im succeeding.

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May be that generations have been moving away from "fixing" and more toward "playing".

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Yes, I see many "marque" people on the general forum now.

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On 3/27/2021 at 6:02 AM, TAKerry said:

I will add, from what I have read in other places, forum traffic is generally overall down, FB seems to have many groups for every type of specific interest out there, a lot of car stuff I understand. I will loose all contact with this hobby before I go to FB though.

 

That's my guess, too -- Facebook groups have become a more popular place to discuss old cars and old car problems than most online forums at dedicated websites.  It's all the more reason this forum is special; it has a set of "regulars" who have been around a long time and stick with it.

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2 hours ago, John_S_in_Penna said:

 

Yes, but is it down?

Compared to 10 years ago, 5 years ago?

Thanks, Peter.  It's still a very good forum.

 

54 minutes ago, 1935Packard said:

 

That's my guess, too -- Facebook groups have become a more popular place to discuss old cars and old car problems than most online forums at dedicated websites.  It's all the more reason this forum is special; it has a set of "regulars" who have been around a long time and stick with it.

 

 

Forum traffic is UP overall in the past 5 years.  My numbers don't go back any further.

Our peak was 61,000 users a week last April, at the height of COVID.

In last few months we've been consistently 50,000+ visitors per week.

We'd not fading, but getting stronger.

 

Also, AACA Facebook page and group have grown dramatically in that time as well.

 

Screen Shot 2021-03-29 at 2.54.16 PM.png

 

 

 

 

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On 3/26/2021 at 6:53 PM, Peter Gariepy said:

Now they're 20-30+ years old their popularity has declined dramatically. Maybe partially due to the inability to keep them on the road.

 

That could mean that the Allante and Reatta are more affordable now. I always thought that they and the Chrysler TC were the coolest American cars from that era. Maybe I should look at one. I think my wife might be more willing to ride around in one of those cars than one of my "old" vehicles.

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 I have a theory on the Allante.  In the 8 year run of Allante’s they made a total of just under 20,000 cars.  These machines were expensive to buy and expensive to repair and because no one made after market parts you must search and wait . I just described my 1993 Allante, let me briefly describe another one of my cars.  It was also made for 8 years and they made just under 20,000 cars.  They were expensive to buy and repair and no one made after market parts for them and you know what ,they do not even have a marque spot on the forum and if they did they would not have very much traffic either.  Oh my other car has another in common with the Allante, it is also the last model year of the Packard Twelve , 1939

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My opinion is that it perhaps is not so much a marque forums decline , but perhaps just specific models in those marques, as well as the year/vintage?  There may be more interest ( even in general by the person viewing this topic who doesn't even own one) in something older rather then newer , just from the standpoint who ever is viewing it may wonder "how on earth do they find parts for that"?  Most know my strong interest in vehicles is of the WWI to WWII era. Like everyone there is more interest in some makes then others and even specific years or models. That being said my interest in Post WWII era, up into the early 1970s has been increased - since I started to read these forums. I am not a "sports car, boy racer" type of guy. Never was, I like four door cars , or convertibles that are 'convertible victorias ' and have a rear seat , wider doors for easier access to rear seat etc.

Reattas and Allantes are at best "ok" sort of, interest wise for me. This is not a put down, just not my kind of car. Many here reading this will look at full size station wagons, 4 door sedans and 7 passenger touring cars or pre war town cars as real arks - I like arks. Not just because they are "big", but because they have the space and equipment I like.

There are some forum topics that just seem to want to go on (forever?) even if they have not been on here for a long period of time. Not necessarily specific to a particular make but perhaps to an era where most viewing do not know about so the curiosity is generated to find out more - and when you do, the "really?" or "they actually did/had that?" kicks in.

Just look at the reaction to Ed's commentary and photos of his White - prime example - many I am sure were thinking when they saw the fabric straps that were used for shock absorbers - REALLY ? and they actually functioned?   People like different, even though many may never own one. Some of the later/newer cars need more years to reach/touch a certain curiosity/interest level.

I am old school - have you guessed that yet?  ( yes I hear some of you thinking " more like a fogey or geezer) , no I don't do Facebook ( but do put my face in a book I hold in my hands that has paper pages and even a hard cover) nor Twitter ( believe that's what birds do in my back yard) . I still try most days to look something up in a printed page , or a printed catalog, a photograph etc. as that is where the information I seek will be found and most often that item is 70+ years old. I won't find online most anything I seek information on which is obsolete car manufacturers, coach builders, designers ,artists, and  photographers that ceased to exist before I was born . Yes, my library and archives are large enough that I will have enough to look at for many decades to come, that was my plan when I started to seriously collect in the mid 1960s , what I learn will be shared as it has been .

Walt

Edited by Walt G
typo (see edit history)
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+1 Walt. I even still read paperbacks (most left over from when I lived in airports & if lucky a dial-up was available).

 

Main difference is that while I have had Great American Land Barges, prefer 2 seaters, particularly ones with enough luggage space for a lady companion. If needed my tow car has four doors,seats that fold, and is only an inch longer than my daily driver.

 

Grew up in a southern island nation with interesting cars that considered the United States as a source for transportation, servants, and orange groves. Home to scoundrels, thieves, neer-do-wells, and the 400. Enjoyed working with my hands (once caught swapping manifolds in my Camaro) which was a no-no. Might break a nail.

 

Also most interested in cars that I knew when new or could have bought if not Scots. Are plenty that have depreciated out to fill my garage.

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Walt:

Great post.  

I also prefer a printed page or book in my hands when available over something on a screen that may be hard to read or of poor overall quality.  I find that I do use the web to look up something but I have to consciously do it whereas my son automatically checks the web on his smart phone for anything.  I am a firm believer that a manual or reference book or special tool is always worth buying even if you just use it once because you can waste a lot of time working without the correct information or tool.

Best regards.

Joe Indusi

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I have no issue with looking things up on line, just that what I seek usually isn't there. Most of what I am looking for has to be put together like pieces of a puzzle - takes time, knowing where to look as well helps , especially when trying to sort out who was the major influence in the development, sales, or promotion of a particular make, etc. You can spend endless days, months etc. looking for something when one line in a printed page or a detail in a photograph can answer that in a second IF  you know where to look. This goes for large and small cars, open and enclosed, of all makes both domestic and European.  Factory issued magazines specific to a make are an amazing resource to send you in the direction you never knew existed. ( Ford-Mercury, Lincoln, Cadillac ( the Crest) , Buick, R-R, Bentley, Auburn, Packard, Franklin, Studebaker  etc. all had publications that gave a broader picture of exactly what was going on in the company of the vehicle you are interested in - all of this was pre WWII into postwar era)

I spend to much time looking at a screen typing up stories I have written to then send to a Editor, to want to then spend more time guessing as to what or where to look for something. Material written during the era I find is more accurate and is not the later interpretation of what someone thinks happened. I never , ever state something that I can not back up with a period reference that was reporting on something that had just occurred . Rare to encounter "fake news" from 70+ years ago.

Padgett, sorry if this has gone a bit off topic!

Walt

Edited by Walt G
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My experience with this site's marque forums has varied considerably with the cars I owned over the years. When I first signed up I had a 63 Buick Riviera. An earlier ROA only forum site had self destructed but I found a lot of interest and assistance here and I think the Buick forums continue to be among the most well attended. When I had the 28 Pierce Arrow, 32 Cadillac, and 34 Packard there was a lot of interest in the general "Our Cars and Restorations" forum but almost none in the marque forums so I went to other club related forums. Same for my 57 Lincoln and 66 Dodge. I use all forums to get real time help with repair issues, buy parts, help others with answers to questions, etc. and generally outside marque specific forums have been more useful to me. However I still open this forum first every day since it is the only one that involves almost every type of car and shows a lot of ongoing restorations and projects. I am an automotive omnivore so that will not change.

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Personally I welcome off topic but related comments.

 

Is interesting that the Reatta forum alone has over 10% of all AACA posts

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27 minutes ago, padgett said:

Personally I welcome off topic but related comments.

 

Off topic posts are a slippery slope I will not let this forum go down.

I also do not like hijacked posts that sway from their original topic.  If you have a new topic, great.. then start one.

 

27 minutes ago, padgett said:

Is interesting that the Reatta forum alone has over 10% of all AACA posts

 

Thats a forum lifetime statistic. 
(NOTE: when this forum started it was a just AACA and BCA, now we have over 100+ forums)

 

Here is a more real-life gauge:

Last 3 month statistics: 

4,391 new topics - entire site

74 new topics - Reatta - 1.7%

1,740 new topics - For Sale (all) - 40%

 

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a) why I said "related"

b) just proves my point that marque forum use is declining.

c) Chrysler TC also not many posts

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1 hour ago, padgett said:

a) why I said "related"

b) just proves my point that marque forum use is declining.

c) Chrysler TC also not many posts

 

"Related" is ambiguous.

 

I agree that certain marques "models" are declining. Doesn't make it systemic in the hobby however.  For example:  Ford Model T's get almost no topics in the AACA forum.  Not because they are declining in interest, but because their are other forums that serve their needs better.

 

“One of the first things taught in introductory statistics textbooks is that correlation is not causation. It is also one of the first things forgotten.” 
― Thomas Sowell

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