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"The Relay" Online Newsletter
September 2019 Issue

This is the monthly online newsletter for the car club council. All car hobbyist events are listed on this site under "Calendar." Just click on the link above to view the list of car shows and other activities.

President's Message

At our August meeting we had a discussion on the 25th anniversary of the council which will be next year, 2020. The council was founded in 1995 to stop the car crusher law. For 2020 we will update the council website to display our 25th year, create a brochure describing all the things the council has accomplished and the benefits it provides for car hobbyists, have a member drive to increase council membership with area clubs and have a 25th anniversary event.

The council delegates approved a motion to move forward on planning an event in conjunction with the First Annual Breakthrough Car Show at Pamplin Historical Park & The National Museum of the Civil War Soldier. Colin Romanick, Director of Marketing & Development at Pamplin and your president Fred spoke about the show. The date will be May 16, 2020 at the historic Hart Farm. This location covers many acres with tons of room for vendors, parking, trailer parking, swap meet and more. There is a large building with restrooms and electricity. We have enough room that we can have one way toads for entry and exit. Colin has experience with several shows he worked with in the Tidewater area.

During the next two months a committee with members of the council and Pamplin will meet and come up with plans for the event and make a presentation at the October council meeting. The council will sponsor the event in honor of our 25th anniversary. We will find ways to integrate the council member clubs into this event and provide ways to thank council members for their support over the last 25 years.

We do need suggestions so feel free to email me any thoughts you have. If you know any food vendors, people who would like to sell items, entertainers, or anything else just email the information and the planning committee will be happy to take a look.

After the meeting in October if the delegates approve we will move forward with the event posting it in the calendar in December. From there we will print and distribute flyers, create an informative webpage and do a lot of promotion to insure this event is a success. If you wish to get involved in some way just email me.

~ Fred

Next Meeting

Our next meeting will be on Monday October 28th at 6:30 PM at a location that will be in the October newsletter. We will elect officers for 2020 and discuss the 25th council anniversary along with the coming elections and more.

September 1957 Esquire calendar

Car Hobbyist News

It’s been a hot summer. You may not have missed them but recall that whenever it was in the 90s for several days that we had ozone alerts? Ozone alerts or ozone action days are days when it is hot and ozone (O3) forms near the earth’s surface. People with respiratory conditions should stay inside on days with high ozone. When was the last time you heard the weather forecasters even use the word ozone? This is because there are so few ozone alert days. In the past year there have been only 3 ozone days where it was above 70 parts per billion in Virginia. Two days in Fairfax County and one day in Arlington County are the three ozone days and they were 71, 72 and 74 parts per billion – just over the 70 limit.

You would think that fewer ozone alert days would be reason to let us know that the air quality is improving but the news media doesn’t mention it. A combination of cleaner vehicles, cleaner power plants, use of low VOC paint and cleaning products have all combined to bring us less ozone. I’m guessing the media has ignored this because it’s good news. And of course this doesn’t fit their narrative that everything is just getting worse every day.

We should continue to be thankful for getting the antique exhaust law through last year. If you read the SEMA-SAN news there have been articles about the updating of the California exhaust law. Before the law change motorists would get a “fix-it” ticket and 30 days to correct the loud exhaust. Now they get an immediate fine – so much for due process. The fine is $25 but after all the fees are added in the total charge is $193! Vehicles that exceed 90 decibels are in violation of the California law. We in Virginia don’t have to worry about decibels as we can use aftermarket exhaust parts on vehicles registered as antiques. It’s good not to live in California.

California Assemblymembers Jim Frazier and Tim Grayson introduced SEMA-supported legislation (A.B. 390) to repeal the section of A.B. 1824 that amended how California law enforcement officials issue citations for exhaust noise violations. A.B. 390 would re-institute law enforcement’s discretion to issue “fix-it” tickets. Hopefully this will get passed.

Rhode Island has passed a law allowing year of manufacture plates on just the rear of vehicles registered as antiques. This is the first time in years any state has gone to one plate. The law only allows antiques to go with one plate and not regular passenger vehicles. In Virginia most of the people who are concerned about one plate are those with Mustangs, Corvettes, Vipers and other sporty vehicles that just don’t look right with a front plate. No one likes to drill through the bumper cover to install a plate bracket plus those brackets always seem a little loose.

There is pretty much no chance for Virginia to go to one plate even for antiques. Members of the General Assembly have killed many one plate bills over the past 20+ years.

Here is part of the antique vehicle plate law that you may not be aware of: C. Notwithstanding the provisions of §§ 46.2-711 and 46.2-715, antique motor vehicles may display single license plates if the original manufacturer's design of the antique motor vehicles allows for the use of only single license plates or if the license plate was originally issued in one of the following years and is displayed in accordance with the provisions of subsection B: 1906, 1907, 1908, 1909, 1945, or 1946.

Yes, if the original manufacturer's design of an antique motor vehicle allows for the use of only a single license plate then you can use just the rear plate. You may wish to carry a copy of the law if you run one plate or if you have a vehicle that is one of the above years. 1906, 1907, 1908, 1909, 1945, and 1946 are years that the State of Virginia only issued one license plate for various reasons.

20th Annual Southern Knights Cruisers Veterans Car and Bike Show
20th Annual Southern Knights Cruisers Veterans Car and Bike Show - click to see all the photos

Dodge Celebrates 50 Years of The Winged Daytona With 501 Special Edition Chargers

From Hagerty
It won't have the original's signature elements, no aerodynamic nose cone or stabilizing high-mounted rear wing, but Dodge will be commemorating the 1969 Dodge Daytona, which dominated NASCAR before it was banned, with a special edition of the 2020 Dodge Charger. However, the name, 2020 Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat Widebody Daytona 50th Anniversary Edition, might require a bigger Monroney sticker. We’ll just call it the DCSRTHWD50AE to make things easier.

The latest version of Mopar's four-door American muscle car will be introduced at Dodge's Modern Street HEMI Shootout this Saturday at the northern end of the 25th annual Woodward Dream Cruise, in Pontiac, Michigan.

To make the special edition a bit more special, the team at Chrysler took the most powerful and fastest mass-produced sedan in the world and made it even faster and more powerful. Chrysler's engineers have recalibrated the Hellcat's supercharged 6.2-liter Hemi V-8 to produce a bit more power, 717 hp, the same as the Hellcat Challenger and. That’s up 10 horses compared to the 707 in most other applications. The automatic transmission has also been recalibrated to shift at engine speeds as high as 6100 rpm, to better use the extra power.

In addition to the extra thrust, the new Widebody Daytona gets 20x11-inch “Warp Speed” alloy wheels finished in Satin Carbon and low-profile Pirelli 303/35ZR20 all-season performance tires (high-performance summer tires are optional), along with black Brembo brake calipers with six pistons up front and four in the back, working on vented rotors.

Despite its ongoing popularity with collectors and speculators, the original Dodge Daytona was a homologation special limited to 501 units, one more than NASCAR then required to be made available as “stock” cars sold to the general public before the sanctioning body would let it race. Though popular with racers until it was regulated out of racing, the Daytona and similarly modified Plymouth Superbirds did not sell well at retail or as used cars. They may be six-figure collector cars today, but in the 1970s, the street cars were rightly considered gas-guzzlers and the competition cars were just obsolete, and banned, racers.

As with the original, just 501 of the new Daytonas will be made. In tribute to that original lot, the DCSRTHWD50AE has its own uniquely shaped decklid with a spoiler, albeit mounted a bit lower than the original's wing, along with a retro-looking crossways Daytona stripe.

It may surprise some that it was Bobby Isaacs who won the 1969 NASCAR championship, not Richard Petty, whose Petty blue #43 Daytona seems to stick in people's minds. Perhaps that's why B5 Blue will be an exclusive color on the DCSRTHWD50AE, though you can also order it in the Pitch Black, Triple Nickel, and White Knuckle finishes that are available on other Chargers.

Inside are some model-specific carbon-fiber bits and Daytona blue accent stitching. The 12-way power performance bucket seats are upholstered with Nappa leather and Alcantara suede, and also feature blue accent stitching and “Daytona” logos embroidered on the seat backs. Dynamica Suede is used for the headliner, and the instrument panel and console bezels are trimmed in real carbon fiber. The flat-bottomed, suede-covered steering wheel has blue and silver accent stitching. The premium velour-bound floor mats also get blue accents and are exclusive to the Daytona edition, as is the steering wheel. A blue “X of 501” numbered Daytona Edition badge with a Hellcat logo is fixed to the passenger side of the dashboard.

You will have to wait for the 2020 model year to begin this fall before you can order one from an authorized Dodge SRT dealer, which is odd for a 50th anniversary edition of a 1969 model. First deliveries are scheduled for early next year. Pricing has not yet been announced.

Hot Fun in the Summertime Car, Truck and Motorcycle Show
Hot Fun in the Summertime Car, Truck and Motorcycle Show - Click to see all the photos

Ford Mustang-Inspired Electric SUV

In just a few months, we'll get our first real look at the long-awaited, Mustang-inspired Ford electric SUV. Reports say Ford will divulge new details in November, likely at the Los Angeles Auto Show. But, we probably won’t see the final product until 2020 before the SUV goes on sale for the 2021 model year. New spy photos show glimpses of the Ford EV’s near-production bodywork hiding under camo are on several websites.

"Mustang-inspired" means the front end resembles the current Mustang. Riding on a new dedicated EV platform, the Mach E will supposedly prioritize performance, which will likely mean an electric motor at each axle producing at least 300 combined horsepower. To achieve its claim of offering 300 miles of driving range on a single charge, Ford will have to offer a large battery pack that could be near 100.0-kWh in size. Starting price is expected to be about $40,000.

NSRA Appreciation Day/Safety Day
NSRA Appreciation Day/Safety Day - click to see all the photos

Legislative Front Lines - From SEMA

New Rules Threaten Exhaust Upgrades

Feds Cook with Corn, Salt, Soil and Gravel

Caddy Convertible
Caddy Convertible

Repair Mistakes & Blunders

From Rock Auto
Back in my early 20s, I had a '67 Chevelle which I changed the motor on numerous times. One of my most memorable motors was an all black and chrome high performance small block. After adjusting the valves, I took it out to the highway for a road test. After 10 seconds, smoke started pouring out from under the hood, making it look like a car from a James Bond movie. I limped the car home, opened the hood, and oil had soaked the entire engine bay. After washing the motor down and topping off the oil, I started it to find the leak. Goosing the gas repeatedly, no oil was seen. It was odd due to how much was under the engine bay but, I just could not find the source of the leak. So once again, I took it out onto the highway and sure enough, the smoke comes pouring out again. I pulled over and yep, oil all over the engine bay again.

I dragged it back home, cleaned it again and ran it for over an hour and still, not a drop leaked from anywhere. So being the glutton for punishment that I am, once again I took it onto the highway where yep, you guessed it...smoke started billowing out from under the hood.

Being as frustrated as I was, I elected to pull the motor (thankfully, the engine removal on that car was less than a couple hours of work due to the amount of room underhood), and as the engine is just about to clear the radiator support, there it was (or in this case was not). The bolt that should have been in the fuel pump rod hole was missing! I could see the shaft clear as day. Apparently, revving the engine did not allow enough oil to pass through, but at higher RPMs and under load, the oil would pour out. Having painted the block black definitely did not help in diagnosing the issue either.

Needless to say, I found the correct bolt to take up residence in the hole, dropped the engine back in and happily motored on until it was time for a more powerful motor a couple years later. I made sure that one definitely had the fuel pump bolt in place...and was not painted black.

Anthony in New Jersey

Ford F-1
Ford F-1

$170K Solar Car That Drives 500 Miles On One Charge

The Lightyear One is a luxury electric car that maximizes its driving range with some help from the sun which makes it cleaner that the electrics that use coal fired plants to get their electricity. From the Lightyear One website:
Breakthroughs in efficiency
Lightyear One has been engineered coming from a radically different perspective. Our performance pushes us to focus relentlessly on to optimize efficiency and safety. We started from scratch, following not convention but only the laws of physics, to get the most out of every joule of energy. Lightyear One will get to a range of 725 km on the WLTP cycle. We will guarantee at least 400km in winter, at highway speeds and with heating on. Mostly, range will be between 500 and 800 kilometers.

Lightyear One has the best aerodynamic coefficient of any car to date due to its cutting-edge design. We rethought the concept of a car from the ground up to optimize the airflow around and under the car. We optimized every part from the chassis to the side mirrors, from the crash cone to the luggage compartment. Not only does it make the car look sleek, but it drastically reduces energy consumption.

Efficient power train
Lightyear has streamlined the entire automobile for efficiency. This includes energy usage. Lightyear One’s four independently driven wheels mean that power goes directly to where it needs to be used. This energy efficiency is a huge factor in the incredible range of Lightyear One.

Reduced weight
Lightyear took advantage of state-of-the-art materials to reduce the overall weight of the car while maintaining rigorous passenger safety standards. The result is a very spacious car that demands less of its power supply. The in-wheel motors and relatively smaller battery also reduce the overall load. Together, this means that Lightyear One has comparatively lower weight and a much longer range.

Continuous charging
The optimized aerodynamics and design mean that a fully-charged battery has a range of up to 800km, more than you need to go from Amsterdam to Paris. The integrated solar cells of the 5 m2 hood and roof mean that Lightyear One charges up to 12km/h as it goes. The already superior range continues to extend with every hour of sunlight. So what starts as a drive from Lisbon to Madrid can continue on to Valencia or Barcelona without stopping for anything but food.

Lightyear is taking preorders for the first 500 Lightyear One cars now for a reservation price of around $135,000 US dollars - purchase price is expected to be $170,000 and if you live in Europe you get to pay a 21% VAT (value added tax). The car is being built in Helmond, Netherlands. Delivery is expected sometime in 2021.

57 Chevy two-door wagon
57 Chevy two-door wagon

The Briefs

A young man in India apparently pushed into a river a BMW he received as a birthday gift. The incident happened when the apparently unhappy birthday boy realized he hadn’t got the Jaguar he asked for, according to BBC News. The car was driven to the edge of the bank, and then pushed the rest of the way. The 22-year-old man was identified only as Akash; according to police, he has a mental deficiency and is undergoing treatment. “When the youth was plunging the high-end BMW car into the river, he also made a video and put it on social media,” the police said. “Akash was unhappy with his father for not buying him (a) Jaguar,” police said in a statement. “He deliberately pushed (the) luxury vehicle BMW into the river.” “We thought there may be somebody in the car but when those engaged in the rescue operation reached the vehicle they found none inside,” said one unidentified villager. According to India Today, the man was later seen trying to get the car out of the water with the help of some people, but it was stuck on a patch of grass. BMW cars cost around 3.5 million rupees ($65,000) locally in India, while Jaguars cost about 4 million to 5 million rupees ($92,000). No charges appear to have been filed against the young man.

A man appeared before a judge Thursday on charges that his unattended hot stove started a fire in his van outside a Walmart in Fridley that spread to another van and killed a 6-year-old girl and severely burned her older sister. Robert Hipolito, 70, of Long Beach, Calif., appeared in Anoka County District court on charges of second-degree manslaughter and negligent fire in connection with the blaze Tuesday morning outside the store in the 8400 block of University Avenue NE. Hipolito remains jailed as bail was set at $100,000. Judge Dyanna Street also ordered him to surrender his passport. Hipolito is due back in court on Sept. 5. Six-year-old Ty'rah White died Tuesday night while being treated at HCMC. Her 9-year-old sister, Taraji, remained in critical condition Thursday morning, an HCMC spokeswoman said. The daughters of 33-year-old Essie McKenzie, of Coon Rapids, were alone in the van for 45 minutes to an hour as their mother shopped in the store, said Fridley Police Lt. Jim Mork. The Sheriff's Office is referring the case to the county's Child Protective Services "because the children were left in the van for quite some time," said Sheriff's Lt. Daniel Douglas. McKenzie has one other child, 11-year-old son Terrell, who was out of state at the time with his grandmother, the mother said on a fundraising page started online by the family.

Four Australian kids took running away from home to a new level on July 13 when they wrote a goodbye note and absconded with cash, fishing gear and an SUV belonging to one of their parents. The three boys and one girl, aged 10 to 14, left Rockhampton in Queensland and headed south to Grafton, a trip of more than 600 miles. Along the way, they twice bought gas without paying and survived a short police chase in New South Wales, which was terminated by the highway patrol "due to age of the driver and road conditions," Acting Police Inspector Darren Williams told Fox News. Around 10:30 p.m. on July 14, police finally caught up with the kids, who locked the doors and refused to exit the car. An officer broke a window with a baton to gain entry. The young thieves will be charged, but they couldn't be questioned until their parents showed up.

When Flagler County (Florida) Sheriff's officers pulled over Derick McKay, 36, for speeding on July 11, they noticed he seemed ... uncomfortable, and although the deputies smelled marijuana, he denied having anything illegal. But when McKay got to the police station (having been arrested for driving on a suspended license), he admitted that he did have some narcotics hidden between his buttocks. Indeed, Fox 43 reported, McKay produced more than a dozen small baggies, including: a baggie of crack, eight baggies of heroin, two baggies of Molly, a baggie of marijuana, 12 Lortab pills and 12 Oxycodone pills.

Sometimes a routine traffic stop (in this case, for an expired license plate) is the most interesting incident in a cop's day. So it was on July 10 for Guthrie, Oklahoma, police officers. Around 11 a.m., they stopped a car driven by Stephen Jennings, 40, who had a friend, Rachael Rivera, 30, in the front seat, and a timber rattlesnake in a terrarium on the back seat. Jennings told police he had a gun in the car at about the same time they identified the car as stolen, reported KFOR. Upon further search, officers found an open bottle of whiskey (next to the gun) and a container of "yellowish powder" labeled "uranium." "The uranium is the wild card in that situation," Guthrie Police Sgt. Anthony Gibbs explained. Jennings told police he was trying to create a "super snake" with the radioactive uranium. Charges for Jennings included possession of a stolen vehicle and transporting an open bottle of liquor. Because it was rattlesnake season, his valid hunting and fishing license absolved him of any charges related to the snake. Police are still trying to figure out what charges might be brought regarding the uranium.

A. Janus Yeager, 49, of Dixon, Illinois, was arrested on July 9 as she motored toward home with an inflated kiddie pool on the roof of her SUV. CBS2 Chicago reported that Dixon police officers pulled Yeager over after being alerted that there were two children in the pool. Yeager told police she took the pool to a friend's house to inflate it, then had her daughters ride inside it "to hold it down on their drive home." Yeager was charged with two counts of endangering the health or life of a child and two counts of reckless conduct.

Police in a small Massachusetts town are sharing video of a recent crash in hopes that it will stop other drivers from texting while driving. Berlin police said the video shows a July 23 crash in which a sedan fails to follow a curving road and slams into a utility pole. The impact flipped the sedan over and brought the pole to the ground. The video was recorded by the dashboard camera in Ryan Hass' SUV as he drove down Central Street. "My original reaction was, 'Did this really happen?'" Hass said. "In the moment, when you see something like that happen, when you live that, you're like, 'Wait. Did that just happen?'"

Four wheel steering was a rare feature available on the 1990 Honda Prelude, 2004 Chevrolet Silverado and 2017 Lamborghini Aventador. I saw a Silverado with it once and you could park it easily with the four wheel steering.

A newlywed woman from Belarus who was swept away by a river in Alaska was trying to reach an abandoned bus made famous by the book and film "Into the Wild." Veramika Maikamava, 24, and her husband, Piotr Markielau, also 24, on Thursday were heading for the bus where hiker Christopher McCandless met his death in 1992, The Fairbanks Daily News-Miner reported . The bus has been the source of multiple rescues since it was made famous, first by Jon Krakauer's book published in 1996 and then by Sean Penn's 2007 film. Both chronicled the life and death of McCandless, who hiked into the Alaska wilderness with little food and equipment and spent the summer living in the bus. McCandless was found dead in the bus almost four months later. Markielau called troopers in Fairbanks late Thursday to report his wife's death during a hike, Alaska State Troopers said. The couple was trying to cross the Teklanika River along the Stampede Trail near Healy when the woman was swept under water, the troopers said. The river was flowing high and fast because of recent rains. In June 2013, three hikers were rescued by a passing military helicopter when they tried to reach the bus. In May 2013, three German hikers trying to reach the bus on the Stampede Trail, near Healy, located about 10 miles north of the entrance to Denali National Park and Preserve on the Parks Highway, also had to be rescued. They told troopers the river they crossed getting to the bus had become impassable for the return due to high, swift-running water. The hikers had proper gear but only enough food for three days, troopers said.

1950 Mercury sedan
1950 Mercury sedan

Support the RPM Act

Sign at this link: www.votervoice.net/SEMA/campaigns/45394/respond

2019 marks a new session of Congress. Bills that did not become law at the end of 2018 must be reintroduced for consideration.

UPDATE TO THE RPM ACT - click link below

Michigan Man Forced to Sell Car Collection

From Jalopnik:
Roughly two years ago, a Michigan township told retired Ford powertrain dyno-cell technician Ron Dauzet that his 218-car automobile collection did not comply with a local ordinance, and so the vehicles had to go. Since then, the now-76-year-old has scrapped or sold approximately 180 cars, but the township is still after him to finish the job. And time is quickly running out.

“They’re back on me,” Dauzet told me over the phone after his helper, Jesse, emailed me about the situation on Monday. Dauzet says he recently received a registered letter from the township, which—after allegedly having left Dauzet alone for at least the past four months—wrote to notify the car enthusiast that he had to remove the remainder of his vehicles by a looming deadline. Dauzet didn’t share the letter with me, but he did describe its contents, simply stating: “[It said] you got until the 17th [of August] to get everything out of the yard.”

Dauzet thinks that’s too tall of an order. “They give me three weeks or less to get rid of the 50 cars...That’s pretty freaking tight because I couldn’t make 20 in a month,” he told me a few days later over the phone. “Now they want me to get 50 in three weeks, it’s an impossibility. Nobody can do that unless you do what I did.”

What Ron “did” was any car fan’s nightmare. “Yesterday I had [the wrecker] come over and he took five cars that were perfectly good cars. Went right to the scrap. I scrapped them all.” Dauzet told me that the cars he recently sent away—which included a V12 1989 BMW 750i and a Mercedes SDL (a fairly rare diesel, long wheelbase S-Class)—were “runnable,” and that they represent just a fraction of the machines that he’s had to offload for less than their true values.

“I’ve got 3 [thousand], 4,000 dollar cars that I’m scrapping for $300. Nobody’s that’s stupid. But that’s what [the township] make[s] you do,” Ron told me, clearly frustrated. “The cheapest one I scrapped [yesterday] was a $1,500 car. Everything else was $3,000 or more...It’s disgusting, I don’t want to think about it. I’m giving up. I’m just gonna let ’em go. I don’t care, I don’t care no more.”

I visited Ron’s house earlier this week, and watched in the mosquito-infested sweltering heat as he used a severely worn-out Allis-Chalmers forklift—which brakes didn’t work, and the transmission struggled to go into gear—to load what looked to be a totally restorable Mercedes 300E onto a flatbed to later be destroyed.

Just look at the image a few photos up and gander at the condition of the rear left tire on that forklift. That’s what Ron has been working with to remove scores of cars from his property. I watched as the machine’s front tires struggled for grip on the grass, and as the motor revved up as Ron tried getting the thing moving, and yet as loud as the engine sang, the vehicle barely moved.

The lack of brakes made maneuvering the machine with any sort of precision difficult, and Ron even pointed out a Mercedes 420 SEL, the door of which he’d accidentally dented a while ago due to the forklift’s lack of functional brakes. Here’s that car:

But Ron chooses to keep that old Allis-Chalmers because it has served him well. When I asked him about picking up a different one, he responded with: “I don’t need it. This thing works fine.” It’s clear that Ron loves old machines, even if they make his life harder than it needs to be.

Ron showed me around his property, which still contained about 40 cars according to Ron. Compared to what I’d seen two years prior, the land was totally transformed. But compared to what I saw about a year ago, there were only minor changes.

Ron gave me a tour of his land again this week, and in typical fashion, despite all the turmoil of broken machinery and tight deadlines, the car-nut didn’t just point to cars and say how much he was selling them for. No, he opened the hoods, pointed out dozens of interesting features, and told me about the vehicles’ histories and rarity.

He’s a true car enthusiast, even if his enthusiasm likely led to the death of scores of cars that could otherwise either have been saved or—more likely—killed many years ago after having rotted away on salty Michigan roads. At least in the latter case, they’d have been driven; To see a classic, low-mileage car scrapped is a sad thing to think about, and Ron knows this.

“I wasted a hell of a lot of money,” he admitted when I asked about lessons learned. “I should have gotten rid of the cars when they were still worth something.”

Ron’s property is pretty disorganized (we spent a half an hour looking for the 300E’s title to give to the wrecker driver, and he couldn’t for the life of him find the letter from the township), he seems to sometimes make things harder than they need to be (he just loves that Allis-Chalmers hi-lo), I think he can be a bit lofty on some of his vehicle prices (presumably since he still has in his head images what the cars looked like prior to being parked for decades), and it sometimes seems as though he thinks he has all the time in the world for projects (I have a similar problem).

That last point is why you’ll see all sorts of engines, transmissions, body panels, and wheels sitting around the yard. Eventually, Ron says, he plans to either swap them into some car, or perhaps find a buyer for them.

But despite these quirks, the thing that stands out to me most about Ron is his true love for cars. Again, many will point to the shredded low-mileage cars and say that a true car-lover wouldn’t have let that happen, but the man’s got gasoline, oil, coolant—and whatever else may have leaked out of these cars and into his groundwater—in his veins. And that makes him a hell of a lot of fun to talk to.

I reached out to the Northfield Township code enforcement department, and was put in touch with the township manager, Steven Aynes to get his perspective. He said he wasn’t sure the exact deadline his team gave Dauzet, though he was, as one might expect from someone in that line of work, not particularly sympathetic. “He signed a consent judgement order...that he’d have them all done way before now.”

“What we’re asking him to do is to comply with what he agreed to do. Otherwise we just need to take it back to the judge and ask him what we should do about it,” he continued, before mentioning that this type of blight ordinance is not unique to Northfield Township. “It’s very common to have these kinds of ordinances, because you have other people who to preserve property values, the condition of the area and so forth,” he told me over the phone.

When I mentioned that Ron had gotten rid of over 150 cars, and asked whether there would be a point at which the township would just count it as a win and stop going after Ron, Aynes kept everything by-the-book.

“When he signed the consent judgement order, he agreed that he’d get em out of there regardless of whatever obstacles he faced with it. He’s had far beyond what the time limits were involved there,” he said. “He’s been given a lot of leeway that is way beyond what would be normal.”

After I tried to learn more about environmental impact of these cars, since Aynes had mentioned that as a reason for such an ordinance, the township manager seemed a bit defensive about how his team was handling this situation.

“[Your readers a couple of years ago when you did a story on this] wouldn’t care what we said about it,” he told me. “If we tried to tell any person to do anything that they didn’t want to do themselves. That was just very apparent to us. And we could have hauled him into court at that time; we haven’t taken action yet. Now it’s time to get up and moving because he hasn’t..abided by his agreement.”

Aynes, who is 66, says Dauzet’s age is not an excuse, and the Northfield Township employee was sure to mention that, though he himself isn’t a car enthusiast, he’s well aware of the importance of car culture in the southeast Michigan area.

I called up Dauzet to ask about the agreement that he’d signed, and about why this deadline was such a surprise to him. He claims he didn’t agree to a specific date, just that he felt like he was forced into agreeing to sell 20 cars per month—that he had no choice. Over the past few months, he admits that he’s been taking a breather. “I kinda backed off,” he said, “because I hadn’t heard from them from over three or four months.”

“Maybe they’re giving me a break or something happened,” he figured. Ron says he was having issues securing a trailer, finding someone to help him, and that he had to have knee surgery. What he’d really like to, he told me, is advertise his cars so he can find the appropriate buyer and sell them for what they’re worth. He doesn’t want to scrap them. But it seems time has run out on that dream.

At the same time, though he wants some relief, he’s no longer resting. He says he’s pecking away at his fleet, and he hopes to make the deadline regardless, in part, by storing cars on the commercial property he has on the other side of the street.

Dauzet says he just wants the township to be “reasonable.” “I don’t sleep at night. I’m rolling around. Waking up three times a night. That’s bull****. And it’s absolutely unnecessary. If they just got reasonable, I’d be fine,” he said.

The situation is unfortunate for everyone involved—for Ron Dauzet, for the Township officials who have to keep checking up on him, for whichever neighbor complained about the growing fleet of rusting and overgrown cars, and especially for the cars. Those poor, poor cars.

I don’t know where this story will go from here, but I do think the township largely accomplished its mission by now. Sure, the 35 cars that Ron says remain on this property still represent quite a large number of vehicles compared to most households, but a 76-year-old managed to get rid of 180 cars in two years. That’s a car every four days. Sure he didn’t quite hit the target, but that still seems like a feat worthy of a small extension. Not just to let him get the most out of the remaining cars, but also to let the world get the most out of them; scrapping decent cars or even nice good parts cars is not cool, and if this mint-condition AMC Pacer Wagon interior ends up in a landfill, I will weep.

Pair of Brass era T's
Pair of Brass era T's

Feds Cook With Corn, Salt, Soil and Gravel

E15 Gasoline: The SAN strongly opposed a U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) proposed regulation to allow gas stations around the country to sell E15 (gasoline containing 15% ethanol) year-round. The EPA currently prohibits the sale of E15 between June 1 and September 15 due to concerns that higher blends of ethanol, combined with warmer temperatures, may lead to increased ground-level ozone formation and smog. The EPA’s rulemaking is an effort to increase the availability of E15, as ethanol supporters maintain this policy change would lead to a greater number of gas stations offering E15. The EPA has turned to sales of E15 to achieve the Renewable Fuel Standard’s artificial mandates to blend large volumes of ethanol into gasoline sold in the United States each year. The SAN opposes this proposed rulemaking and the expansion of E15 sales. Ethanol, especially in higher concentrations such as E15, can cause damage to high-performance parts and vehicles manufactured prior to 2001.

Public Lands Law: President Trump signed a massive public lands bill into law that contains many separate components combined into a single measure. The law includes elements strongly supported by the SAN, such as the California Desert Protection and Recreation Act co-authored by Rep. Paul Cook (R-CA) and Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-CA) to permanently designate six existing OHV areas. Those areas include Johnson Valley (expanded by 11,000 acres), Spangler Hills, El Mirage, Rasor, Dumont Dunes and Stoddard Valley. The law also includes a SAN-opposed provision to permanently designate federal lands within Emery County, Utah, without providing adequate OHV protections. While the provision safeguards most existing OHV routes within the San Raphael Swell, several trails were lost.

Route 66 Centennial: The U.S. House of Representatives passed a bill to create a commission to recommend ways to commemorate the 100th anniversary of Route 66, which was completed in 1926 as the first all-paved U.S. highway. The Route 66 Centennial Commission Act creates a 19-person board, including governors of states through which the highway passed from Illinois to California. The commission will recommend ways to celebrate the anniversary, such as through writings, films and documentaries, education programs, artistic works and commemorative memorabilia.

Bonneville Salt Flats (BSF): Utah lawmakers have appropriated $5 million toward a program to restore the Bonneville Salt Flats, contingent upon securing federal funds. The money and funds will be used to create a 10-year, $50-million program to dramatically increase the amount of salt pumped onto Bonneville. The bulk of the monies will come from the federal government, with contributions as well from the motorsports community. Beginning in the ’60s, the salt crust diminished due to historic and current potash mining activities under existing leases from the Bureau of Land Management. The mine owner has been pumping salt since 1997, but planned infrastructure upgrades will increase the volume. As a result, the racing venue should gradually expand from its current 8-mi. length, with a goal of reaching the original 13-mi. length.

1956 Corvette
You never know what you will find - this is a one family owned 1956 Corvette that was recently inherited.
The man who bought it new was from the midwest and did the custom touches to it. The car has been changed
from the original 3-speed to a 4-speed and the engine is out for repair. The current owner plans to do some
work on the car.

Protect Your Right to Buy Ethanol Free Fuel

Below is a link to Fuel Testers - a website that is opposed to more ethanol in gasoline and would like to preserve our ability to purchase gasoline free of ethanol.

DMV Titling Information

As promised I have a document about titling antique vehicles posted below for download. This contains information from the DMV speakers at the August 2015 meeting and some other information that I hope you will find useful. If in doubt about anything email or call the DMV administrators in the document; I have their contact information listed. And for the millionth time be sure to check to see if the VIN matches the VIN on the vehicle before buying it. This can save you a lot of trouble - just ask anyone who has purchased a vehicle without a matching VIN. There is also valuable info on purchasing an older vehicle from a non-title state. If you are thinking about buying a vehicle from a non-title state be sure to read it. Link to the document: Antique Vehicle Titling and Registration. I also have a bill of sale for use in buying or selling an antique vehicle: Bill of Sale; and a bill of sale for use if the signatures need to be notarized: Bill of Sale.

You may also find these links useful. The following link goes to the National Insurance Crime Bureau where you can put in a VIN that will be checked for fraud and theft at no cost. The link is www.nicb.org/theft_and_fraud_awareness/vincheck. You should do some research on the vehicle you are thinking about buying, check the VIN to make sure it matches the vehicle and of course make sure the VIN on the vehicle and title match.

The next link goes to Stolen Car Reports, another free service. At this site you can register a stolen vehicle. You can also search a zip code, city or area for the vehicles that were stolen from that area. The link is www.stolencarreports.com/report/Search.

Antique Plate Info Flyer Online

The council delegates have approved the flyer with information on antique plates and a link to it is online here: flyer opens to a new window. Council members and antique owners may print the flyer for their own reference or distribute it to those who own or are considering registering a vehicle as an antique. It will remain on the site for an undetermined time. Council delegates will review the effectiveness of the flyer at a later date.

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