Monday, April 14, 2014

German Engineering

Brought this '82 Mercedes home DOA last weekend. Today she lives!

MB240D from Dave Mikulec on Vimeo.

Thursday, April 10, 2014

Gettin' Crowded. Again.

So we drug this low mileage Mercedes home from Louisville last weekend...

Sunday, March 30, 2014

Just Hangin' Out

Spring has finally arrived, so it was a great weekend to just hang out down at the shop. Finally hung my vintage WMMS (Cleveland) radio station banner that I'd meaning to since last year. Started cleaning out another storage unit that I've been meaning to empty and also took delivery of an old Gothic looking church pulpit to use as a laptop desk which I've dubbed the Altar of the Rusty Nuts.

Can't wait for next weekend!

Sunday, March 23, 2014


Still have to pull the cam bearings and freeze plugs. Almost there...

 The weather finally cooperated which meant a great weekend spent at the shop.


Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Waiting For Spring

But hey, at least the shop's warm and dry.

Hoping to have this one on the road by summer but right now we're still waiting on paperwork before putting any money into her to get her roadworthy.

Sunday, February 2, 2014

Didn't Watch The Superbowl...

But this, this was probably the best commercial they aired. Well done Chrysler. Well done indeed.

Monday, January 27, 2014

Harbor Fright!

Broke down and picked up a Harbor Freight 20 gallon parts washer. Good enough for a hobby garage but I wouldn't want to depend on it in a production shop. The pump seems to be the weakest link on these things (it's flimsy plastic and stamped as a "fountain pump"). I'll fill it with kerosene next weekend and give it a little workout and see how it does; I have plenty of parts off the Imperial's 413 that need cleaning. Other than that, it's been too cold to spend much time down at the shop lately.

Sunday, January 5, 2014

Slowly And Methodically

Still tearing down the Imperial's bigblock. I've been working slowly, making sure to bag and mark every nut and bolt along with their location, in ziplock bags. Vintage breadpans and baking tins found at thrift stores are great for storing these small bagged parts.

Saturday, December 28, 2013

New Shop Truck

1974 Dodge Custom 100
318 2bbl
3 speed manual on the floor
manual steering and brakes
Chrysler Cordoba wheels
Fairly solid body, clean bed

I see some potential here: lower the stance, shave the badges, loose the mirrors and toolbox, dual exhaust (maybe some lakepipes), add some old school pinstripes. Hmmm.

edit 1/5/2014 - toolbox gone, YOM front plate added. Thinking about adding a front roll pan and changing out the front bumper this summer to my wish list of things I'd like to do.

Friday, December 27, 2013

The Dragon Awakes

A subtle reference to Peter Jackson's latest Hobbit installment, The Desolation Of Smaug. But yeah, the beast that is our 1965 Plymouth Valiant was fired up this past weekend, for the first time in probably twenty years... at least.

1965 Valiant 1st start in two decades from Dave Mikulec on Vimeo.

Wednesday, December 25, 2013

Monday, December 23, 2013

A Pleasant Surprise

When you're mechanically digging into these old girls, you never know what you're going to find. Some go through many owners, and often sit for so long that it can be a real crap shoot as you're disassembling things and assessing condition.

I had a couple of goals for this past weekend's brief shop time and one was to get the Imperial's drums off so that I could check the condition of her brake system. It was obvious that the lines had been replaced at some point in the recent past since they were still rust-free, and I was hoping that whomever had that work done had a brake job performed as well. Turns out, I was right. They did:

Shoes, wheel cylinders. Everything looks good. About 50% of the lining is left so I'll run them as is while I locate another set since these large shoes aren't available any longer. And the wheel cylinders aren't even dirty they're so new. What a nice surprise. Likewise, the drums were replaced too, so they're basically new.

US made components!

There's an "86" stamped on the front shoes and I'm wondering if that was the year they were relined (by RM).

In any event, it looks like I'll get away with just cleaning and painting the drums. Makes me happy!


Monday, December 16, 2013

Hot Rod Galahads

A little before my time, but this crazy 1955 vintage video profiles the Miami, Florida Ramblers Car Club. Watch "red-blooded American boys become victims of their own pistons, healthy thyroids, and yankee ingenuity" in "cam jamming, petrol perking rejuvenated road jumpers".