My Work has been a big part of the Electric Drag Racing Chevelle. Many parts of the Chevelle are Surplus Telecom parts. I also specialized (At Times) in Battery Work for the Phone Company. Below are some of the Vehicles I have bought and sold in my travels as a Telecommunications Installer from 1972 to 2014. Trying to keep these Vehicles running from coast to coast, & a big part of the Mississippi River & Intracoastal Waterway, has had a lot to do with my building of the Electric Drag Racing Chevelle.
I found the 1949 Buick in Raleigh, NC. while working there after the breakup of ATT and the Bell companies. The 1950 Harley I found in Dayton, OH. while working in Greenville, OH. I Actually found the Harley first and carried it in a 1963 Ford Van until I found the Buick and a trailer in Rocky Mount, NC. (The Harley picture on the left was in Southern Pines, North Carolina and the Harley picture on the right was in Walnut Creek, California) Once I started driving the Buick and Harley around the Country, I was addicted. I was talking to so many Americans that you normally would not talk to if you were driving a normal vehicle. Once while passing through Albuquerque, NM. I was telling a patron of the Village Inn that I could not imagine an old vehicle could go so far, and he proceeded to tell me about the book "On the Road" by Jack Kerouac, which I had to read, along with most of his other books. Below is one of my more memorable adventures with the 49 Buick and 50 Harley...................................... It was so hot there in East Bay (what the locals called it, across the mountain from San Francisco). I believe it was a Saturday and it was so hot that the tools kept burning my hands when I picked them up, so when I got the brakes working, I decided to take a cruise to West bay and cool off a bit. Right after going through the Lafayette Tunnel the temperature went from 95 degrees to about 70 degrees. At that moment in time everything was perfect! A young man from the hills of Kentucky cruising in an all original 1949 straight eight Buick pulling an all original hand shift 1950 Harley Davidson with the famed Golden Gate bridge in the foreground. About 1/4 mile past the tunnel I figured I should slow down a bit with the weight of the Harley on behind, and when I did the brake pedal went all the way to the floor. So for the next 0.800 seconds my common sense junkyard brain went into "How do I get out of this situation mode". If you have never been through the Lafayette tunnel, it is all downhill for a few miles after the tunnel. I just pictured the Buick and Harley going off a curve at 100 miles per hour. I was down to 0.100 seconds when i spotted a road off to the right with a cliff at the end. I remember saying to myself either take your chances here or at the bottom of the long downhill, so I pulled off on the little road with the cliff at the end. There was no way I could stop before I got to the cliff with no brakes so the Buick, Harley and I went into the ditch. Driving in the ditch slowed me down just enough to stop me 10 feet before the cliff. When I got out of the Buick and was looking at the damage I noticed there was a girl sitting on a rock near the cliff and had seen my bouncing exit. She came down off her rock and we started to talk. I noticed she was a little high and her hands were sort of promiscuous. I continued to survey my problem with the Buick and found that the right rear brake line had failed where I used the flaring tool. So I proceeded to re-flare the brake line and asked her if she would help me bleed the brakes so I could get back to the motel. We laughed the whole time she was helping me bleed the brakes. At one point I had her in the Buick pumping the brakes and told her "Pump it till it’s hard" and then I would release. This cracked us both up but somehow we managed to get the brakes fixed. I asked her if she needed to go anywhere and she said sure, so I took her to Telegraph Ave. in Oakland and we hugged and parted company.
1947 Buick Sedanette found in a barn in Dundee, Michigan, while doing Cell Tower work. The Buick had 29,000 original miles when I bought it and started traveling with it. After traveling with the 49 Buick and 50 Harley I wanted another combo, so I went to Pennsylvania where I found a 1936 Harley with a wooden side car. Then on to Cincinnati Ohio where I saw an article in the Cincinnati newspaper that said New Mexico needed hands for "Hands Across America"
1954 Reo Military 6 x 6 Duce & 1/2 (2 & 1/2 Ton) and Ericsson Company Van. I found the Reo in Steamboat Springs, CO. while installing an Ericsson Digital Switch there. I had a tow bar made and pulled the Van from CO. to MN. and on to Washington State. What a trip, the crankcase of the REO engine filled up twice with gasoline (from my electric fuel pump being left on over night), and I had to drive to the nearest gas station, with gas still in oil, and get oil changed. This happened twice and we still made it to Yakima, Washington, my work destination. It finally locked up when I left the Washington area. When I left Minnesota going West over the Rocky Mountains I took the northern route through Montana. The REO did good on level ground going around 55 mph, but when I got to a hill or mountain, the speed would drop pretty quick and I would spend hours going 8 mph. I got a good taste of what it was like to drive a truck back in the 50's. On the downside of the Rocky Mountains, I nearly lost it trying to gain time and not use the lower gears. The air over hydraulic brakes were not the best. It was in the middle of the night and once I got the REO stopped, I spent the night on the mountain until dawn. Really thought I was going over.
1968 32' Trojan with Twin 302's, bought in Galveston while working near Houston, took some time off after the job and took the boat and an Airedale Terrier named "Huckleberry", and took the Intracoastal Waterway from Galveston to the Mississippi River and then on up to Vicksburg where I sold the boat and went back to work.