Sunday, November 30, 2008

Another Fine Weekend

Friday:
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Saturday:
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Sunday was low key. It was overcast with a forecast of snow showers. Holiday shoppers + snow= a great day to stay off the streets. So we sat around, watching TV in the warmth and safety of home.
We ended up having meatloaf for Sunday dinner:
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I would'nt want my weekend to end any other way.

I start my new job tomorrow...

Merry Christmas to me

I spied this beauty along a back country road the other day.
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It looks to be a running '58 or '59 F-100, styleside, shortbed. It has a monster 426 motor and automatic transmisson. Though I have a 302/AOD combo ready to drop in that would be much kinder on the gas. I've been wanting to buy a pre-66 Ford truck to replace my 88' F-150 and/or 51' F-1 trucks. With a 1.8 liter motor it's impossible to haul anything beyond groceries and kids in my daily driver '98 Escort wagon. Forget about pulling a trailer or transporting my bike.
I just called and left a message. But I am already daydreaming about a rattle can flat black paint job and lowering kit. Moon discs, wide whitewalls and straight pipes would follow on too. If the price is right I may buy it as a Christmas present to myself. Thank goodness for unused vacation pay.

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Sunday, November 23, 2008

Lulu

My Grandma, Voleta Heimer Kinsey turns 90 on November 29th. Since I was a baby I have called her Lulu. My family had a party for her last night in my hometown of Anderson, Indiana. Even though she is only 5 feet tall she has accomplished alot. She continues to be vibrant and active by volunteering and helping out her neighbors, many of them substantially younger than her.

She was born in Missouri in 1918. She met my grandpa Charles Willard Kinsey and married on New Years Eve 1938.
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They moved to Anderson a year later drawn by work at the Delco Remy and Guide Lamp divisions of General Motors. At that time the factories were ramping up for the war in Europe. Lulu worked in the factory that made among other things:
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My grandpa was drafted and returned from the war in 1946. He went back to work at the factory while my grandma stayed home to raise their family. In 1951 they started Modern Trailer Sales and Court, now owned by my parents. At one point they had a trailer park, a grocery store, a laundromat, an RV dealership with a repair shop and a small factory manufacturing truck caps. Lulu ran the trailer park and store, Charlie took care of the rest while continuing to work 2nd shift. My grandpa retired from GM in 1969. He died in 1983. He and my grandma were married for 46 years.

Without Lulu I would literally not exist. I am so grateful for the hard work, dedication and love she has given me and our family.
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She is my hero.
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Friday, November 21, 2008

Lyle Landstrom

If you don't already know then you need you get your ass schooled, fool:
http://www.landstromsfoundry.com/Index.asp
Lyle makes some of THEE MOST bitchin' cast aluminum and bronze Linkert, H-D and custom parts. Dig it:







Hooray for Vikings!!!

Thursday, November 20, 2008

World's Greatest $14 Guitar

I have a lot of luck at The Bargersville Flea Market. I got the groovy 70s sparkle helmet mentioned in a previous post. I've also seen great deals on tools, firearms and records. Not only do flea markets have great low, low prices but the selection is often pleasantly surprising.

Take for example this Airline hollowbody guitar.
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Airline was the brand name under which Montgomery Ward department stores sold Hi-Fi equipment and electric instruments.
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Manufactured by Valco the quality was decent enough and priced with the student in mind. Fit, finish and playability were nowhere near a Gibson or even a Fender. Though they did make higher end models such as the red and white Res-O-Glass model played most famously by Jack White. LOT'S of 60s garage rock was banged out on cheapo Harmony, Kay, National and Airline guitars with a Fuzzface pedal through a Silvertone tube amp. Love that. But I digress.

I paid $14 for this gem. The guy was asking $20 but I had bought the kids a lemon shake up and ice cream so my wallet was lightened. Some hillbilly had tried to turn it into a five string banjo. He shaved 1/4" off the treble side of the neck with a bandsaw. The bass side was missing 3/8" with a banjo tuner at the 5th fret.
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The neck was reasonably straight and the original Kluson tuners were intact.
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It was a bargain.

To start off I removed the original fret board with painted dot marker. I had an extra fret board which I glued into place using a straight edge and clamps. A plastic nut replaced the cut down bone original. I filled in the gaps with bondo.
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The gap between the fret board and the top of guitar was filled in with paint stirrers.
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I made sure to make it all square by snapping a chalk line from the bottom to the top.

Once the glue dried I got to work routing the top for a single humbucker at the neck. I ran into a problem with the top bracing. So, I reinforced the opening with
1/4" paint stirrers and Gorilla Glue.
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I wired in the pickup using a self contained chome volume/tone thingie and a 1/4" jack.
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From there I masked off the neck and hit it with some rattle can black. I touched up dings and chips with a black sharpie. After the paint hardens up I will wet sand the neck to blend it with the original paint and hand buff the entire guitar while retaining the patina and original markings.
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Unfortunately the original pickguard disintegrated when I tried to route it for the pickup. Eventually I will make a new one using the old pickguard as a template.

I strung it up with flatwounds and plugged it in. Amazingly it worked on the first try. After rewiring a dozen guitars I finally got one right. The cheapo humbucker HONKS like Ike Turner's guitar from Rocket 88.
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Aside from a few cosmetic touches I am pretty happy with it, and it only cost me $14 and a couple hours of my time.
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I dig it.

Saturday, November 15, 2008

The Cool Hot Rod

A 1950s educational film. Lots of Deuces and A-v8s draggin it out with some mild customs thrown in. I especially love the vintage Indy 500 footage with Duke Nalon and Roger Ward in part 3! God Bless Youtube.


Sunday, November 9, 2008

A Fine Weekend

One of my very most favorite things to do is go digging for records in junk shops, thrift stores and flea markets. I have a secret spot on the other side of town I kept meaning to get back to but could never find the time. On a previous visit I noticed piles and piles of vinyl. It was such an obscure and dank place that it was almost virgin territory. Earlier in the summer I had scored a Herman Miller Aluminum Group chair designed by Charles Eames as well as a Big E Levi's jacket and a Ben Sherman knockoff button down shirt. I got all 3 and some other assorted baubles for less than $20. On Saturday I finally went back to sift through the records. It wasn't exactly a goldmine but it was definately time well spent.

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A quick run down:
Albums
Ray Price's Greatest Hits-Columbia
Loretta Lynn's Greatest Hits-Decca
Richard Pryor-The Wizard Of Comedy-Laff
Chilling, Thrilling Sounds Of The Haunted House-Disneyland
Steve Martin-Lets Get Small-Warner
Steve Martin-Comedy Isn't Pretty-Warner
45s
Johnny Nash-You Got Soul/Dont Cry-JAD
Ricky Nelson-Just A Little Too Much/Sweeter Than You-Imperial
Ricky Nelson-Teen Age Idol/I've Got My Eyes On You-Imperial
Rick Nelson-That's All She Wrote/For You-Decca
James Brown and his Famous Flames-America Is My Home pts. 1&2-King
James Brown and his Famous Flames-???/Is It Yes Or Is It No-King
Sue Thompson-Never Love Again/Norman-Hickory
Paul Revere and the Raiders-I Don't Know/Let Me-Columbia
Roger Miller-Chug A Lug/Reincarnation-Smash
The Champs-Limbo Rock/Tequila Twist
The Box Tops-Soul Deep/Happy Song

I also got a Fender "thermometer" style hard shell guitar case.

I paid $19.26 for all of it, tax included.

Sunday morning I had breakfast at the Steer Inn with my friends Lori Baumgarten and Eric Smith. Eric and I have collaborated on some T-shirt ideas. He pays the bills as a graphic designer for International Tattoo Art as well as The Indianapolis Star. But his original art work is quite impressive. He layed both of these on me gratis.
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I also got some time to work on a new guitar project AND a new band project. But I'll leave those until later...

Saturday, November 8, 2008

Monday, November 3, 2008

That was then, this is now.



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I watched him give his son a spit bath right before this pic. It is a great thing to grow older with my dear friends and our children. Welcome home buddy.

Sunday, November 2, 2008

Free or inexpensive...

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Herman Miller Eames chair trash picked from the alley=$0.00
70s sparkley helmet at the Bargersville flea market=$15.00

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Customized trucker hat at the Indiana State Fair=$15.00
Getting my kids to participate in my cornball antics=priceless? Not exactly, I had to bribe Sophie with a Reese's Cup.
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Utah just wanted it to be over with so he could go back to watching TV.
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Saturday, November 1, 2008

Another XS650 from Ardcore...

Another great trad-style metric chop by John Ard, paint by Nate Spainhower.

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An unfocused dilettante. I'm not half bad. Overall a very good yegg and a wrong guy in an increasingly right world.

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