Keith’s Blog: Three 50-Year-Old Alfas and 1,000 Miles

We’re on the final leg of the NW Passage, a tour put on by the Oregon Region of the Porsche Club of America and sponsored by SCM. We started in Portland, Oregon, went to Leavenworth, Washington, then Coeur d’Alene, Idaho and spent the final night in Walla Walla, Washington. On Monday we headed home to Portland.

We often talk about the need to take your old cars out and just drive them. Whether they are fully restored or have just Read More

Keith’s Blog: Prepping Three Alfas for the NW Passage

I’m not really a glutton for punishment — even if my actions indicate otherwise. Getting one 49-year-old car ready for a 1,000-mile, high-speed tour is enough of a challenge; getting three ready has been an adventure.

The annual Northwest Passage tour begins this Thursday, June 9.  The Oregon Region of the Porsche Club of America masterminds this great event, and SCM is a sponsor.

This year, it’s a five-day romp that begins at Bonneville Hot Springs, 47 miles east of Read More

Keith’s Blog: No Concours Restoration for the Alfa

For those following the saga of our 1965 Alfa Giulia Spider, you’ve seen it go from a slightly disheveled but much-loved daily driver to a completely stripped shell.

It was last year that we took it to Bill Gillham, in Jefferson, Oregon, for some minor rust repairs. As he dug into the car, he found it had various serious rust issues that were not immediately apparent.

We made the decision to have him proceed and take care of its problems. Read More

Saying Goodbye to the Amazon

It was two years ago that we watched our 1967 Volvo 122S arrive on a car hauler from Madison, WI. And now we’re going to watch it leave.

Owning the Amazon has been a delightful and enlightening experience. It was a good car when it arrived (unlike so many of the cars that I acquire), and we spent two years making it even better.

We took it on tours, to cars and coffees, to Volvo club meetings and more. Wherever Read More

You Can Go Home Again

As you read this, the 2006 Lotus Elise that we sold in May of 2013 is in a car transporter and headed from Connecticut back to SCM World Headquarters in Portland, OR.

We first drove an Elise in 2009; Legal Files contributor John Draneas has one. We were entranced. Weighing just 1,984 pounds, and propelled by a 190-horsepower, 1.8-liter Toyota engine with a Yamaha-tuned cylinder head, the Elise was very quick indeed. The spartan — yet purposeful — interior made Read More

Keith’s Blog: Porsche Turbo vs. Alfa Duetto: Size Does Matter

“Old age, experience and treachery will overcome youthful enthusiasm and talent. “ In car speak, that translates to: “A mature driver in a vintage 4-cylinder sports car can easily overtake someone younger and less-experienced — no matter what they are driving.”

Two weeks ago, I discovered that saying is simply not true.

I asked my daughter Alexandra if she’d like to go to a winemaker’s dinner at Marchesi Vineyards and Winery in Hood River, about 60 miles from Portland.

She Read More

The SCM Volvo Could Be Yours!

We’ve spent more than two years and thousands of dollars fully developing and sorting out the SCM 1967 Volvo 122S “Amazon.” It’s now for sale on eBay.

http://www.ebay.com/itm/391452529684

We purchased it from noted Volvo racer Jim Perry; it had been his personal car, and he took it on some hot laps at Road America.

It came with extremely rare factory a/c that blows ice cold. Add to that the overdrive we had installed, and the full IPD suspension Read More

Here Comes the Judge

What do a 1968 Ford GT40 Mk III, a 1967 Porsche 911S, a 1972 4.9 Ghibli Spider SS, a Toyota 2000GT, a 1972 Ferrari 246 GT and a 1968 DeTomaso Mangusta prototype have in common?

These are exotics with 6- and 8-cylinder engines placed in the front, middle and rear of their chassis. The GT40 is a barely disguised race car, and the Dino is a high-speed grand touring car. Imagine the 911 as an extraordinarily original survivor, and the Read More

Should the Alfa Spider be Restored for Concours or Driving?

Here’s a quick update on the 1965 Giulia Spider Veloce.

It went to Alfa guru Bill Gillham for some rust repair in the rockers and trunk a few months ago.

As he disassembled the car, he found corrosion in nearly every nook and cranny. While the car looked good at first glance, it actually bent when you put it up on the lift.

Although I wanted to keep the patina the car had developed in my decades of ownership, it Read More

Keels and Wheels Gives Back

There are many ways to measure the success of a concours. They range from number of entries to spectator counts to the elegance of the cars.

But there is one element that I think outshines the rest – how much money is raised for charity.

Those who have cars entered at concours are likely to be very successful in their day jobs, and they have exquisite cars as their playthings.

So it makes sense that at a gathering of these Read More

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