Gunner’s Garage

Royal treatment

  Once Pontiac set out to become General Motors high-performance division around 1959, it needed a dealer to build racing cars. Ace Wilson’s dealership was near the factory and Jim Wangers talked him into the new job. The whole story about this is in Wangers’ must-read book Glory Days. Royal took factory stock Pontiacs,...

Could It Be?

  In 1974 we drove a 1953 Pontiac to the second annual convention of the Pontiac Club (www.poci.org), that was held in Wichita, Kansas. In 2014, we drove a different 1953 Pontiac to the 42nd annual POCI convention. A lot of things have changed in 40 years—but maybe not everything. Back in 1974, Byron...

“Studie-ous”

  I’ve got to hand it to the Studebaker Drivers Club (www.studebakerdriversclub.com)—the organization does a great job keeping the passion for those South Bend buggies alive. We were recently in a meeting where the size of various car clubs came up and someone said that SDC had 14,000 members. According to their Website, the...

Back From the ‘50s

Our travels recently took us to the Pontiac club (www.poci.org) show in Wichita, Kan. We drove the ’53 Catalina down to Kansas, heading out to Albert Lea, Minn., and then traveling south on I-35 nearly all the way to our destination. Forty years ago we drove a ’53 Pontiac Chieftain sedan there. This time...

Friday Evening Fun

  Although I live in Iola where Old Cars weekly is headquartered, my restoration shop business Gunner’s Great Garage is located 15 miles to the east in Manawa, Wis. The city of Manawa has a downtown revitalization program going and as part of it the city will host car shows in downtown Manawa every...

All Dressed Up

We went to out first old car show around 1959 at a very old-fashioned drive-in restaurant on Staten Island, N.Y. called Al Deppe’s. Actually, the show was across the street at the Kiwanis Club. This was so long ago, that during the show, my brother and I went over to an empty lot next...

Wisconsin Auto Museum

  The Wisconsin Automotive Museum (www.wisconsinautomuseum.com) is a great place to stop when traveling to or from the Iola Old Car Show (www.iolaoldcarshow.com). The museum located near downtown Hartford, Wis., provides a rare opportunity to see the largest assembled group of Kissel luxury automobiles on display anywhere in the United States and possibly the...

Sturdy rack holds tires.

Get Your Home Garage Organized like a Pro Shop

  Many classic car hobbyists only have a standard home garage. So how can you turn a regular two-car garage into a mini man cave” Jody Schmeisser of Pit Pal Products (www.pitpalproducts.com) brought his Get Organized Garage to the Performance & Racing Industry Show (www.performanceracing.com). Jody’s trailer products are aimed at racers who needed...

This Ringbrothers Mustang project sports new blue paint.

Ringbrothers’ Mustang

The award-winning Mustangs built by Ringbrothers in Spring Green. Wis., took Golden Builder Awards at the Hot Rod & Restoration Show. Mike and Jim Ring are known for making dream machines. While Ford “pony cars” aren’t the only type they work on, their Mustang-based Reactor, Dragon and Kona Resto-Mods have put them on the...

Hippie horsepower.

Flower Power

The ’69 Plymouth Barracuda Mod Top model summed up the flower child movement of the ‘60s, but it also had “flower power” with a 340-cid V-8. Only 1,021 Mod-Top Barracuda or ‘Cudas were made and few had 340s. According to the Mod Top Registry (www.mooresmopars.com) about 88 of the ’69 Mod Tops are known...