Wednesday, May 17, 2006

No Money

The rodder's common lament. This statement doubtlessly goes back far before the term "hot rod" ever came into existence. I'm certain that the first day the first automobile made its way down the road for the first time, there was a guy standing there watching as it passed him, and his eyes probably got all dreamy and far off and he said, "Well I'll be! I want one of those...but I don't have enough money."

My summer dreams have been shattered by the ruthlessness of reality. I had plans to get the Chevelle back on the road and back to the drag strip. Following that small feat (which is completely doable), I had plans to swap in a nice, big, fat, torquey, loud 500 cube Cad engine.


I may have two dimes to rub together, but one of them is going towards the mortgage. The other will go towards dumb stuff like food. If I could figure out a way to live without eating, believe me when I tell you I would do it.

The monthly bills have got me backed up against the wall, and there's not much I can do about it in the immediate future. Oh sure, I can sell stuff, and I plan on it. I'll soon be saying goodbye to a Fender Concert amplifier that was nicely modified for harmonica playing. There's a second amplifier, also tailored towards harp playing, made from an old Gulbransen organ amp with a custom cabinet, and that will hit the boards of eBay as well. However, the money from those will, in effect, be turned over towards yet another full-custom harmonica amp for which I have already paid.

There are some minor items that can still hit the market: Cadillac-specific TH400, Triumph T140 motorcycle engine (with 5spd, mind you), Chevelle bumper brackets, an old Chevy 3spd. All these items won't amount to much, however, except for perhaps the Triumph engine. I suppose I should sell that Echoplex as well, but those black box tube repops aren't worth jack now that there's a fabulous, super-zoot blonde one on the market.

Headers for the Cad swap are probably going to run me a grand, and I don't even have the scratch for the oil pan that is also required. I have no speed parts for the engine, so even if I did get it installed it would end up being a dead stock 150HP '75 smog motor with headers. (Yes, I can tell you're as not-jazzed as I am about that prospect.)

I'm feeling pretty powerless over this whole situation right now, and it's not fun. I guess admitting where I stand is a step in the right direction, however. At least I won't be beating my head against the wall trying to do things I can't do.

Thinking this through a little further, I can probably pick up some lessons from the decades of oft-times penniless speed freaks who have gone before me. I'll just have to work with what I do have, rather than ruminating about what I do not. We'll see how this tactic plays out.