Vintage Street Rodders of America
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July 17

July  2017  VSRA  Newsletter

Jim’s Corner

First of all, I would like to apologize to Dennis Grieve whose 1947 Ford was picked as the Featured Car for our Street Rod Safari Show.  I mistakenly called it a 1947 Chevy in last month’s newsletter.  Sorry about that, Dennis.

As usual, I have been on the road almost every weekend.  We are going to Maggie Valley this weekend to a car show to promote our show next month.  After we got back from Ohio, where we put on the Ohio nationals Rain Fest, I went with a friend of mine to Pilot Mountain, NC, better known as Mt. Pilot on the Andy Griffith Show, for their monthly Cruise-in.  This is a large monthly Cruise-in held on the third weekend of the month called Hot Nights and Hot Cars.  We were surprise to run into so many VSRA members who were local to this show.  The weather prediction was for off and on showers all day for which they were right.  The car count was down a little because of the rain but they still had around 300 cars.  If you get a chance, you may want to put this Cruise-in on your calendar.  A couple of things that I enjoyed was the constant cruising of some really odd machines, a free tour of a sign museum in town and top name live beach music.  One tip I would give to someone that is going to spend the night, is to go to Winston-Salem, a few miles out, to get a nice hotel.  There are not any good hotels in Pilot Mountain.

On Friday, the day before I went to Pilot Mountain, I took the Humpback to a big rig show at the Bristol Dragway.  I really enjoyed seeing the big rigs all dressed up.  Below is a picture of what I thought was the best looking rig at the show.

Please understand that we have to repeat the same information from time to time to keep the new members informed.  Some of the information in this newsletter is the same as last month’s newsletter.

Sam Memmolo

Great News!!!  We have a special addition to the action at the show in Maggie Valley this year.  Sam Memmolo will be in attendance this year.  Sam is well known in the automotive world via his TV and Radio show appearances.  He has been on air with tech advice shows like Shade Tree Mechanic, Two Guy’s Garage, Motorhead Garage and his current show now running on Velocity TV, Sam’s Garage.  He will be a valuable asset to our show with a meet and greet session as well as an Electrical Seminar.  He will be there on Friday and Saturday for all the fun.  So make your plans now to attend this year’s fantastic Smokin’ Rodz in the Smokies.

                                               Sam's Headshots 030.jpg



Current Project

I have asked for members to send us a story on what they are working on but I haven’t had any response lately, so I’ll share what I am working on.  It is a 1934 Dodge truck.  Like the panel truck, you don’t see many of these trucks unless you are Holt Ball of Charleston, WV.  He has built several of these trucks and he has given me some good ideas on building my truck.  I bought this truck from VSRA Member, Charlie Light, probably around 2003 in Pigeon Forge.  Charlie started this truck and did a very unique thing by setting it on a 1934 Dodge car chassis.  By doing this, he was able to use the 4” longer hood, which I think is the PD model, which makes it very cool looking.  I did not know this until I bought another hood for the truck and it did not fit. The hood is almost as long as the bed.

One of my designs is a Ram head that lights up in the headliner.  This will be the dome light.  The tail lights are flush mounted LED lights with corvette exhaust pipes in the center of the rear roll pan.  I am using a 241 Baby Hemi out of a 1954 Dodge car.  The hood sides will be left off to display the Hemi.  The transmission is a 5 speed straight drive out of a Dodge Dakota truck.  I also built a sun visor to match the one on the panel truck and will be using the same colors that are on the panel truck.  I currently have the body off of the chassis to work on all the body work and the chassis.  I am so close to getting the body work done that it so hard not to work on it all the time. To be honest with you, this is why the newsletter is a little late this month because I can’t stay out of the garage!!!  I would rather be out there than in front of a computer.  So please forgive me.  You guys know how it is when you’ve got street rod fever.  Below are a few pictures.


Smokin’ Rodz in the Smokies

Our Smokin’ Rodz show is just around the corner and we hope you are planning on attending and bringing a friend.  This year, we will be treating all the registered car participants to a free cook-out at our Cruise-in at the Wheels Through Time Museum on Thursday evening.   Also, you will be admitted free to the museum.   Dale Walksler, the owner and star of the TV show “What’s in the Barn”, will be on hand with all his stories about his love for motorcycles.  Sam Memmolo, the Shade Tree Mechanic, will also be on hand for this Cruise-in.  Friday after the show, we will cruise over the mountain to go to Harrah’s Casino.  

We will be having another silent auction this year so if you have any items that you would like to donate, bring them and we will be glad to find them a new home.

Don’t forget to have your total miles driven in 2017 because you might be The Street Rodder of the Year for 2017.  For all the new members, the Street Rodder of the Year is presented to the member who logs the most miles driven in one year from the period starting at the end of last year’s  Smokin’ Rodz Show until this year’s Smokin’ Rodz Show.  Total mileage includes everyday mileage, not just to car shows. You do not have to be present to win. Just send in your miles to us.  Also we will present the Pioneer Award to another deserving Street Rodder.   The Pioneer Award is presented to a long time Street Rodder who enjoys driving his street rod, shows good character and is always ready to help his follow street rodder with any problems.

Ohio Nationals

It would not be the Ohio Nationals if it did not rain and rain it did.  If fact all day on Friday.  We had our Cruise-in on the Medina Square where the Mayor came out and picked a 1933 Chevy Coupe owned by Herb Jackson from Dalton, Ohio.  On Friday, we put all the cars that showed up on this rainy day, in Bldg. 22 where we had our DJ and played games.  We made the best of a rainy day.  We had our cook-out that afternoon in the covered pavilion.  Saturday turned out to be a great sunny day with nice temperatures.  Our DJ was busy all day long giving out door prizes to the people who could answer some very interesting trivia questions.  Ron Goben did a seminar on brakes to a large group of interested street rodders.  Our 50/50 gurues, Bob and Nancy Russell, were busy selling tickets all day long.  This couple could sell snow balls to Eskimos!!  They sold $700 worth of 50/50 tickets.  Congratulation to Joan Krejci for winning the 50/50.   Thanks again to Nancy and Bob for their efforts.  Thanks also to all the volunteers who helped with the show.

Ed Bettridge, linebacker on the 1964 Cleveland Browns Championship Team, came to our show and set up a booth with Cleveland Browns memorabilia.  He donated a poster of the 1964 team signed by the players to be auctioned off.  Russ Walters, who is a Steelers fan, bought the poster for $150.  We donated this money plus half of the 50/50 to Shriners Hospital Transportation Fund.  The total amount came to $500.

The 25 VSRA Picks

Joy Harbaugh                           1936 Dodge Sedan                        Seville, Ohio

Steve Crile                                1932 Ford 3W Coupe                    Garfield Heights, Ohio

Russ Walters                            1935 Dodge 2 Dr Sedan                Wadsworth, Ohio

Tom Nader                               1937 Chevy Coupe                         Rootstown, Ohio

Richard Reffner                        1929 Ford                                      Bedford, Ohio

Dennis Ingram                          1939 Chevy Master Deluxe         McDonald, Ohio

Leslie Keller                               1948 Chevy Convertible              Brimfield, Ohio

Dennis Russell                          1932 Ford 5W Coupe                    Mantua, Ohio

Lou Reboudo                            1932 Ford Roadster                      Richfield, Ohio

John McCormick                      1932 Ford Roadster                       Bethesda, Ohio

Chuck DeBolt                            1932 Ford 5W Coupe                    Barnesville, Ohio

Larry Hammon                         1948 GMC 3100                             Spencer, Ohio

Roy Carpenter                          1940 Ford Coupe                           Medina, Ohio

Tom Georgian                           1928 Ford Roadster                     Willoughby, Ohio

Keith Batman                            1932 Chevy  Sedan                        St Albans, WV

Bob Glading                               1934 Ford 3 W Coupe                  Vermilion, Ohio

Nancy Russell                            1933 Chevy                                    Bucyrus, Ohio

John Webb                                 1940 Ford Deluxe Coupe            Oak Hill, WV

Terry Soltis                                 1934 Dodge Coupe                       North Lima, Ohio

Bob McBrayer                            1937 Buick Coupe                         Willoughby, Ohio

Stan Vansach                              1930 Ford Coupe                          Spencer, Ohio

Chuck Coleman                          1936 Plymouth                              Cleveland, Ohio

Hank Apana                                1941 Chevy 2 Dr Sedan                Seven Hills, Ohio

Ken Merunski                             1935 Ford  5w Cpe                        Seven Hills, Ohio

Next Year’s  Featured Car is a 1939 Lincoln Zepher owned by George Millsop from Brunswick, Ohio.   Below is a picture of the Lincoln.



2017 Vintage Rod Tour


Our 2017 Vintage Rod Tour will begin on Oct. 9th in Chattanooga, Tenn. and end up at the Key to the Hills Pre-49 car show in Boerne, Texas.  This year’s Key to the Hills car show will be on Oct. 13-15. We will meet in Chattanooga, Tenn. on Oct. 8th and leave on Monday to travel to Montgomery, Al.  On Tuesday we travel to Monroe, La.  On Wednesday we travel to Dallas, Texas.  Our last travel day will be Thursday when we end up in Boerne, Texas.  The Key to the Hills car show is one of the longest running Pre-49 shows around. 

The following stops are only suggested stops and you will not be frowned upon if you decide not to make some of them.  If you have any other suggestions on where to stop, we will discuss them at our Drivers Meeting that we have every night in the hotel lobby.

    Coker Tire and Honest Charlie’s in Chattanooga, Tn

    Hanks Williams Museum in Montgomery, Al.

    Duck Dynasty Restaurant in Monroe, La.

    Lunch at Bodacious BBQ in Tyler, Texas 

    Cruise-in at Sachse’s Rod Shop in Sachse, Texas

    Magnolia Market in Waco, Texas  This is the shop owned by hosts of Fixer Upper TV Show.

Below is a breakdown of daily mileage:

Monday October 9                Chattanooga, Tenn. to Montgomery, Al.                      220 miles

Tuesday October 10              Montgomery, Al. to Monroe, La.                                  365 miles

Wednesday Oct. 11               Monroe, La. to Dallas, Texas                                       285 miles

Thursday Oct. 12                   Dallas, Texas to Boerne, Texas                                   293 miles

Total miles                                                                                                                1163 miles


The following is list of the hotels that we will use for the tour:

Oct. 8   Courtyard Marriott      2210 Bams Dr.     Chattanooga, Tenn.    423-499-4400    $79.00

Oct. 9   Holiday Inn Express    5135 Carmichael Rd.   Mont., Al            334-270-9199     $89.00

Oct. 10  Quality Inn   1401 Martin Luther King Jr. Dr.   Monroe. La.      318-361-9944     $72.00

**Oct. 11  Best Western        2011 N. Highway 78       Wylie, Texas      972-429-1771    $70.00

Oct. 12-15 La Quinta Inn   25042 IH 10      West San Antonio, Texas    210-564-6700   $89.00

    ** This hotel would only block 10 rooms for $70.  If we need more than 10 rooms, the rate will be $90 for the rooms above 10.  First come gets the best rate.  This hotel is close to our Cruise-in and is very cheap for the Dallas area.  We were very pleased that we were able to get all the hotels on the tour for under $100.

 Let us know if you will be going on this year’s tour and we will send you a tour sticker for your car.

Wayne’s Corner

Boy is it ever rainy and hot here in South Carolina!

The local car shows have dried up and only a few cruise-ins survive!  Looking forward to August for the Smokin’ Rodz in the Smokies at the Maggie Valley Festival Grounds on Aug. 11th -12th! I and our Southeastern State Reps. will try to make the show go as smooth and enjoyable as last year’s event. Many of the wives of the State Reps will be manning registration and T-shirt sales booths. Jim and Debbie Bledsoe have arranged a super cookout on Thurs evening at the "Wheels Through Time" Motor Cycle Museum, and of course a trip across the mountain to the Cherokee Gambling Casino on Friday after the show, with special parking!  My staff and I will be selecting 25 Picks from driven pre-49 participants and will be looking for that special ride to feature on the 2018 event T-Shirt.  It will be hard to top Gary Dilley’s Yellow Street Rod that was our 2017 pick.  Hope many of you will come out and enjoy the magic of Maggie Valley and the good luck goats to be seen on the mountain overlooking the show grounds.

Remember, for all you Road Warriors that have driven your ride to many shows and cruise-ins, as well as everyday driving, in 2017, add up your total mileage and we will be awarding our VSRA Street Rodder of the Year for the member who logged the most miles.  Also, we will honor one of our VSRA members with the Pioneer Award for outstanding service to the street rodding hobby.  I will be introducing two new State Reps at the award ceremony, Carl DeHart from Virginia and Dennis Grieve from Eastern North Carolina.  They will be assuming their duties after the show and we welcome them on board.  We now have two State every state in the Southeastern Div. with the exception of Alabama, and Jerry Johns has the whole state covered in spades. Please contact your State Rep. and introduce yourself.  Bring any new suggestions or bitch to him, and he will get them up to the VSRA Management team. Remember we care what you think about VSRA and how to improve each show each year.

Enough BS for this month and see ya'll on the road to Maggie Valley!  Bring binoculars to observe the good luck goats!      Wayne B


Ron’s Corner


As promised I am including some wiring charts that I omitted in last month’s article on wiring. They are self-explanatory if you study them carefully.  Of course there are many different needs and problems to be solved when modifying a vehicle, so if you don't see what you need, let me know and I'll try my best to assist.

On another topic, we had a good time in Medina even with one day of rain. Lots of good folks and neat cars. We also had a meeting with the Ohio reps who voiced some concerns they had. We thank them for their honesty and dedication to the growth of our beloved hobby/sport. The old adage "it takes a village" to accomplish most anything is still pretty much true. We need and want the input from all our members as there is no VSRA without you. However Vintage Street Rodders of America was founded and remains on the principal of pre-49 vehicles and was the main reason our members joined. We have worked to stay true to that concept and will continue to do so. We believe the need and market is still out there for our type of dedicated street rodder.

We count on our members bringing in new members and friends as we continue to grow. Admittedly the growth has been slower than we would like, but we still add new folks to our roster with each show. We're not trying to 'out do' any other organization or group, but rather provide an opportunity for real 1948 and older vehicles a venue to gather and have fun, share ideas and socialize with like minded people.

Comments made and experiences have shown that the grass roots street rodding is alive and well. As one person said as he attended the Ohio Nationals in Medina, " we didn't come to see thousands of cars, we came to see a real hot rod show and this is a great show!"

So let's all support each other and our gatherings and make this group even bigger and better than it already is! Ask a friend to join, or better yet, ask 10 friends to join!! The more rodders we attract, the more we can do for our members and the bigger & better shows we can produce. It's just that simple. It takes people to succeed and we love our members. The more the merrier ! If we all put forth an effort to recruit new members and only half of us are successful, we still gain lots of folks and make new friends!  I for one would love to see several hundred pre-49 cars and trucks all in one place sharing ideas and fun.

Hope to see all of you in Maggie Valley as we once again invade the Smokies!!

Ron & Dee - still smiling

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