Working at 1A Auto, I often find myself discussing the differences between OEM vs. Aftermarket auto parts. Today we have a little bit of that, along with an old vs. new part comparison. It comes to you in the form of 1999 Dodge Grand Caravan “non-quad” headlights.
A neighbor and friend of mine came to me recently after her van failed inspection for having headlights that light cannot possibly pass through. The inspector planted a big “R” sticker on the windshield and sent her on her way. Last year, her husband had tried using the headlight polishing magic in a bottle, which did worked temporarily, but as you can see, it was not a long term solution. This year, the only good option was to toss the sand blasted, yellowed, 12 year old OEM headlights into the trash, and bolt on a fresh new set.
As you can see, the new lights are identical shapes and sizes as the originals, but they also included the leveling bubbles to help you aim the headlights once they are installed. Fancy right? Other than that, it was a simple switcharoo. Pull the old ones out, put the new ones in, and finally see the light. The End.
So we’re at the track a few weeks ago for a “street night”, and these two big rigs nonchalantly pull up to the starting line. One is a giant, yellow and chrome, super ridiculously clean, semi that blows fire. The other, well it’s an equally spotless, sort of sleepy looking, blue dump truck. My friends and I were in the audience, perplexed. The two of them stroll through the water box and proceed to absolutely obliterate their duallys past the 60 foot mark. What the heck were we watching? The battle of the decepticons? They both reversed back to the starting line and staged like they had done this before. When the light turned green, they tore down the track like Sam Witwicky had just stolen their cube again. Diesel was feverishly burned, boost was made, blow off valves honked, and major fun was had. The craziest part you ask? Well, that was the blue dump truck’s slowest pass of the night. It was running mid 14′s consistently down the 1320 until they shut the lights off. The rumor in the crowd was that it had over 1000 horsepower, and we’re betting its torque was fairly decent as well.
Can’t see the video? Here is the link: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1GwPY_3vPmA
Special Thanks to Chad S. for the great video footage as always!
Recently, I was wandering the streets of Reddit/Autos, and saw an awesome video that “DrunkOnUnleaded” posted up. It’s a couple years old, but I was so thoroughly impressed that I figured I would share it on here as well. In the midst of a heated track battle, one car begins sliding, which inevitably leads to an amazing automotive stunt that you haven’t witnessed since the 1930′s… Unless of course you race Fiat’s. Maybe it’s more common in the Fiat world than I think. Either way, enjoy the video. I sure did.
Can’t see the video? Here is the link: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=M2ZbmQVTjHw
The fender needs to be buffed out, and the brakes need work, but solid overall.
Sometimes I hang my phone out the window and snap pictures of the lowest thing I see.
When you are accelerating down the straightaway at 120 mph in your track-only EVO, the last thing you want to lose is your brakes. Luckily for this driver, the driver of the silver STI on his right checked his mirrors, saw what was about to happen, and didn’t turn in to the corner. If he had, both drivers would have been in much worse shape. Hold on to your hats, it’s one hell of a ride.
That obviously looked pretty bad, but imagine if you could see it from the STI’s perspective. Oh wait, you can, because he had an in-car camera as well.
When all was said and done, the driver of the EVO was a bit sore, and his car needed a few new body panels. Overall, not bad. It did drive itself onto the trailer though, which indicated the drivetrain being “mostly” ok. So what happened to the brakes? Well, he believes that they were severely overheated just before the straightaway, which boiled the brake fluid, and caused the low pedal. Needless to say, the brakes will be getting an upgrade of some sort.
Can’t see the videos? Here are the links:
Recently we posted a picture of an awesome 1956 Chevy truck with some massive wheels tucked under the fenders. Today I have an interesting update on it. A nice guy named Tim sent me an email with some pictures of what the truck used to look like when he owned it back in the late 1990′s. As it turns out, this thing used to be a Massachusetts fire truck!
The story goes that Tim bought the fire truck around 1997 (Lucky guy! Who doesn’t want to own a fire truck!?). He then removed the fire truck parts, and turned it into a flat bed with some storage boxes on the side. He had it for a couple of years, and then sold it. The truck then seemed to lay low for several years. During that time, it apparently got a chopped top, shortened wheelbase, lowered stance, “normal” truck bed, and some seriously subtle custom touches here and there. Here is the evolution in front of your very eyes.
Special Thanks to Tim W. for sharing the pictures and the history with us!