Keith’s Blog: The Bugeye or the 911 — Which Car for a Road Trip?

SCM’s 30th Anniversary Tour is fast approaching, so it’s time to test and finalize the route.

The route master is Neil d’Autremont of Sidedraught City. He’s given me the instructions for the last section of the final day. By freeway, it’s about a 100-mile stretch.

I’ve been planning to take the 1960 Bugeye on the scouting expedition. My plan is to head to Astoria, on the Oregon Coast, then down to Newport, then over to Sweet Home. It’s about Read More

Keith’s Blog: The Sprint Speciale – Preserve or Restore?

Now that our 1961 Alfa Romeo Sprint Speciale is coming back to life, we’ve got some questions to address.

The car is an unusual mix of a well-aged mediocre paint job, excellent original chrome and a completely incorrect interior.

From 20 feet away, the car looks terrific. This is why I was attracted to it at the Auctions America Fort Lauderdale sale a couple of years ago.

It had been in a museum for nearly 30 years. The engine was Read More

Who is Your Favorite Restoration Tech?

We all have our favorite specialists. We have our go-to chefs, sommeliers, gardeners, travel agents and interior designers.

We also have our favorite restorers. These are the men and women we turn to when we need our cars done just right. They’re the solution providers when we come across a problem that has others scratching their heads.

In the October issue of SCM, we will be recognizing 20 of the top collector-car restorers, based on Read More

Keith’s Blog: Going to a Swap Meet

There’s been a lot written about the demise of swap meets. We’ve all heard how the Internet is now the quick-and-easy way to find and or sell what you need.

However, the human factor is overlooked in all this. Just as I believe land-based auctions are a way for like-minded enthusiasts to come together, so are swap meets.

The Alfa Romeo Owners of Oregon (www.alfaclub.org) host an annual swap meet each spring. This year I volunteered the SCM “Bat Read More

Keith’s Blog: A Concours in A Bunker Dodges the Rain

During the Cold War, a top-secret fallout shelter designed to house 1,100 people (every member of the U.S. Congress and one aide per politician) during a nuclear war was constructed under The Greenbrier in White Sulphur Springs, WV.

This past Sunday, for the first time, The Greenbrier’s bunker became the home for a variety of sports and racing cars, including a 1957 Ferrari 500 TRC and a 1972 McLaren M8F CanAm.

The Greenbrier is a “Grand Hotel” in the traditional Read More

Keith’s Blog: A Bugeye Nose Becomes a Dinner

“Do you want the spare parts that go with it?”

It’s a familiar phrase when you make a new acquisition. More often than not, the seller is anxious to get rid of the spare parts that accumulated during their ownership. Sellers waving goodbye to a car are often happy to clear out their garage — and help fill yours.

When I bought Bradley’s 1960 Bugeye Sprite a couple of years ago, the seller threw in a 1,275-cc block, head and Read More

SCM’s Endless Summer

Imagine 40 classic cars — many of them Alfas — hitting redline as they climb to historic Timberline Lodge on Mount Hood. Or after a day cruising the wide-open landscapes off Highway 97 past Fort Rock, gathering again to drive around crystal-clear Crater Lake.

We’re just a couple of months away from the Sports Car Market 30th Anniversary tour. All 40 positions sold out quickly, but there is room on the waiting list (www.sportscarmarket.com/anniversarytour).

We’ve already starting putting the Read More

Keith’s Blog: 400 Miles in a 1965 Alfa

Just about 100 years ago, Bob McGill, one of the founders of the Alfa Romeo Owners of Oregon, was born.

Just about 60 years ago, McGill bought a new 1958 Alfa from Rambo Motors in Portland. A Normale, its serial number was 1495.02609.

McGill died at age 92 in 2011.

Exactly 40 years ago, Alfa Romeo Owners of Oregon began to celebrate Bob and his Alfa by having a tour that featured “Old Spiders” (those built between 1955 and Read More

Keith’s Blog: 1,000 miles in a 15-year-old Porsche

When I bought my first car in 1967 — a 1960 Bugeye — it was just 7 years old. I bought my first Alfa in 1968, a 1963 Giulia Spider Veloce. It was 5 years old.

By 1975, when it was 15 years old, the Bugeye was hopelessly archaic. The same was true for the Alfa in 1978.

By comparison, the 2003 Porsche 996 911 that entered the SCM fleet over a year ago seems as modern and up-to-date as Read More

Keith’s Blog: Buicks, Rileys and Alfas – The La Jolla Concours

This past Sunday marked my 7th year as emcee of the La Jolla Concours d’Elegance.

In the bright morning sunshine, I looked over the 135 cars on the lawn at Ellen Browning Scripps Park, which is right on beautiful La Jolla Cove. The setting, which overlooks the beautiful Pacific Ocean, of this concours rivals that of Pebble Beach.

That same Sunday, it was 45 degrees and raining in Portland, with gusts of wind reaching 40 mph. Clearly La Jolla Read More