Friday, September 28, 2007

Our Friend The Car Collector

We have a friend who collects vintage cars - all kinds. Carolyn was lucky enough to go to his buildings where he stores and works on these cars. (The collector felt that the phrase "works on these cars" was a bit of a stretch. In his words "This is where he dismantles them and Bart puts it all back together or gets them running at his shop!") These are just part of his collection.

This 1967 Pirsch fire truck is the only vehicle the collector owns that Bart will not work on!

1937 Cord

1973 MGB

1952 Morgan Plus 4

1947 Chevrolet Pick Up

The collector's wife did this paint job!

Even American vehicles mark their territory!

1958 Jaguar XK 150

The sheet metal work for this Cord 812 is almost complete.

His friend's BMW 600 joins the group (the body is being sanded, new floor is being welded and will soon be ready for paint)..........

....along with his Corvair Greenbrier pick up truck.

Model A Ford

This poor chap started this restoration 50 years ago, stopped for a break, and never got up again.

1991 Porsche 944S2

And his four Maseratis!

1971 Maserati Indy

1967 Maerati Mistral 4.0L

1984 Maserati Biturbo

Here is the latest - a 1980 Maserati Merak SS!

Bart gets to take it out for an "Italian tune up"!

Thursday, September 27, 2007

GA Mountain Sportscars

Every spring a large group of sportscar enthusiasts gather together for a picnic followed by a lively ride through the North Georgia mountains. There is always a good collection of MGs, Triumphs, Jaguars, Mini Coopers, Porches, Austin Healeys, and an occasional Datsun, Ginetta, Allard, and Morris Minor. We usually spend several hours driving on some fabulous roads (no pot holes in this part of the country) that all boast great scenery.

Three great friends - Steve Cripps, Bob Kassow and Chris Gore!

We make several gas stops to keep the group together, swap stories, and make any necessary repairs if needed. The ride ends back at the starting point so we can all chat and share more stories. It's a great way to welcome warmer weather!

In Memorium

Bob Kassow, a friend and regular participant of the Spring Mountain tours, liked getting together a few friends who enjoyed driving their sports cars at a spirited pace. Bob called these "No Picnic Basket" runs as the folks would gather early in the morning and drive as many hours as they could. There was no time to mess with picnics! In the summer of 2006 several of us gathered with Bob near the Georgia/Tennessee border at sunrise, grabbed a quick cup of coffee and sped off for a ride which took us through the Appalachian Mountains, the Smokey Mountains, the Cherohala Skyway (Bob's favorite road) and eventually to Asheville, NC. Driving his Ginetta, Bob lead us down many curvy, hilly, tree lined roads and through many side roads he had previously explored. He seemed to know the area like the back of his hand.

After several stops for sight seeing and gas, we arrived at the garage of one of his friends where we were served lunch, enjoyed looking at all of the wonderful memorabilia, cars, etc. and gathered up a few more cars and drivers.

We thanked our host and hostess and headed out again. More beautiful roads and sights leading us to Asheville. The final destination was a car show which was the final stage of a week long classic car road rally. We arrived in time to see a lot of the cars before they drove away. After a beer, we turned around and headed home. It was a beautiful day and we greatly enjoyed the camaraderie.

Robert Kassow February 13, 1947 - December 2, 2006

Bart wrote the following eulogy for Bob: "Though I've known Bob only for a couple of years and only in the shared appreciation of sports car driving at levels of concentration that erase the intrusions of anything not related to the sensory inputs necessary to maintain control, I came to realise that he was one of the few. The few who could escape, for a while, time itself and its limits. Think about skiers, mountain climbers, bicycle racers and sports car drivers as all able to escape time for a bit. Bob did all of those things and the things the rest of us do in the other life we share with each other. He got his time."
Bob is sorely missed by all who had the pleasure of knowing him.