THIS IS ABOUT US, AND WHAT WE DO
That's me, posing with a near-new at the time 2002 Ford Mustang Saleen. It had less than 300 miles on it, I bought it then flipped it. But not before driving it first!
I go by Andy, and this is my website. I’m totally into Classic American Muscle Cars, and have been since I was a kid, since before they were ‘Classics”. I’ve been into cars and motorcycles all my life, and made it my business for a good part of it. I’ve had some very cool cars over the years. And there have been times when I’ve been too poor or too practical to have a truly sweet ride. But, cars have always been with me, in my blood. And this is what I’m going to try to convey through this humble website.
ABOUT US: MY CARGUY ROOTS
I grew up in a little country town in California’s Central Valley in the late 1960s and 1970s, where there were only 3 things to do: Sports, Girls and Cars. I opted for the latter 2. And both are still with me, I’m happy to say. Being in high school from 1969 to 1973, we lived around some amazing cars, and thought nothing of it. A girl at school drove a silver 1964 Pontiac GTO. 1968 and 1969 Camaros and Firebirds were everywhere, and early Mustangs were commonplace. Several guys in my school had hot Mopars, a Superbee and a Roadrunner come to mind, both with 383 Magnums and 4-speeds. And these were high school juniors. Honestly, I don’t know how we survived. I mean, testosterone-laden teenagers in seriously fast cars are dangerous enough, now put them into cars with drum brakes, spongy suspension and no power steering, let alone ABS and stability control. In my high school days I drove a very fast car, but not what you’d expect. A buddy of mine and I both bought former CHP cars from this home security company. He got his 1969 Dodge Polara for $300, and I paid $150 for my 1968 Polara. Each had a 440 Magnum with heavy duty police package. They were huge lumbering beasts, but gawd were they fast!! My buddy got his up to a clocked 157mph one night out on a country road, with 6 of us riding along, on bias ply tires...bald, no less. The next night, I came to the same spot with 4 in my car and clocked my speed at 154mph. I guess the aerodynamics were just a little better on the newer body style of the ’69.
ABOUT US: MY BABY, A 1955 NOMAD
From there I got a very nice 1969 Datsun 2000 Roadster, fixed it up a little more and really enjoyed that car. I put a new convertible top on it, rebuilt the carbs, repainted it silver, blacked out some areas on it, and it looked tough & ran strong. Nice car. I sold it to buy the love of my life: a 1955 Chevrolet Nomad sport wagon with a 375hp fuel injected 327 out of a 1965 Corvette. The last year for the famous Rochester mechanical fuel injection, it absolutely sang on that 327. It made that big Nomad unbeatable in my area for over 3 years. The secret was that most 4-barrel carbureted cars ran out of air at around 5500 rpm. But I was shifting at more like 6300 rpm, so I got some extra time at the top of each gear, when my power output was at its peak. I usually did the quarter with 2 shifts, where most guys took 3. That made all the difference.
It was 1971 and I just got back from motocross racing my Carabela 125 (Mexican). But more significant is the tail end of my still-black-and-white 1968 Dodge Polara former CHP patrol car with 440 Magnum and 154mph top speed!!
ABOUT US: BUILDING COOL CARS
During those years, all my buddies had great cars and we worked on them ourselves all the time, because we were just middle class kids, we didn’t have any money to spare. The rich kids got new Trans Ams, and while we admired them, we also looked down our noses at them because we felt that anyone with enough money can buy a fast car. We were building
fast cars. And we did. As teenagers, we rebuilt our cars often. My friend Peter has a sweet 1965 Ford Mustang coupe, and we went through that thing several times, making it better each time. Faster and faster, too. Another friend had a 1969 Dodge Charger with a 383 that we did a lot of work to. Before that, he had a 1967 Chevy Chevelle SS396. Get this, these cars were so common in the day that when he tore a big slice of sheetmetal out of his left-rear quarter panel one day, we all decided that it would be cheaper to swap a whole new body onto the frame than it would be to fix the quarter panel. And we had just the body: a 1955 Chevy 2-door coupe that had been drag raced. They tore up the frame putting a straight axle on the front so it wasn’t any good, but the body was OK and it had a fiberglass tilt front end on it. We measured it up, and sure enough it looked like it would fit. So we called my buddy with the tow truck to come over and pull the Chevelle Body off it’s frame. We just scrapped it. Can you imagine? Then we had a big party and got about 14 guys to all grab the ’55 Chevy body, pick it off the ’55 frame, walk it over the ’67 frame and set it down. We had to move it around a bit, and cut a few spots out of the floor to clear the Chevelle frame, particularly around the rear suspension arms, but it all fit pretty well. It ended up being a pretty awesome car.
ABOUT US: WORKING IN AUTO PARTS
All during these years, the early to mid-1970s, I worked at a Napa Auto Parts store as a counter man and an apprentice automotive machinist. You learn a lot about cars selling parts. And even more when you’re working under a master craftsman like the old guy I worked for. He was legendary in our area, and everyone wanted him to do their machine work on any engine they were building. And I was there for all of it. He taught me what he could, but I was just a young pup with other things on my mind. Like girls.
From 1998 to 2003, I owned Camaro Headquarters and the last couple of years, Mustang Headquarters also. I sold 500 Camaros in 5 years!!
ABOUT US: ONWARD & UPWARD
When I was about 22, I got an opportunity to go into real estate with my cousin who was older than me, and quite successful at it. It took a move from my familiar little country town to the Bay Area, but I did it and he helped me get started. I was in and out of cars back then, struggling in a new career, living in apartments, or as someone’s room mate, where working on cars was out of the question. But still, I flipped a few now and then, and had some nice ones myself that I kept. I had a few new T-Birds, my personal favorite was a 1985 Ford Thunderbird Turbo Coupe. I love the lines of that car, and the interior, and it was pretty fast for a tiny little 4cyl. I had some BMWs, a Cadillac Seville when they first came out, and some very nice Jeep Cherokee Limiteds, and Grand Cherokee Limiteds. I had a few oldies in there too and would do a fixer-flipper now and again, when the opportunity came up. Real estate being an ups-and-downs business, I got out from time to time and did other things including cars. I sold new Fords in 1985 & 86 at a Ford store, then new Chevys briefly. The new car business taught me a lot for sure. One was that I don’t want to be in the new car business. It’s tough, and it demands toughness, and toughness on the customer, or rather on their wallets. It goes against my nature. But good luck to those who do. We need to sell those cars.
ABOUT US: THE CLASSIC CAR BUSINESS
An interesting thing happened. In yet another real estate slump, I went to work in a local classic car dealership in 1995, quickly became the top salesman, then the manager and was involved in the sale of literally hundreds of gorgeous classic cars over the next 3 years. This was a consignment store, meaning sellers brought us their classic cars, and consigned them to us to sell for them. We had to drive every one of them, both to familiarize ourselves with the cars we were selling, and as part of our safety inspection. We were selling around 300 cars per year back then (and I drove every one of them), but not all the cars sold, we probably turned about half back to their owners when they didn’t sell (and I drove all of them also). So that makes 600 cars per year that I drove. Then add the ones that we didn’t take in on consignment, maybe the sellers wanted too much. We drove most of those cars too before telling them what we thought they were worth. So there’s another 300 or so in a year. So it’s not unrealistic to say I drove somewhere around 900 classic cars each year for 3 solid years. And during that time, I sold a lot of amazing cars. It was the happiest time of my working life. I went in their recently, it’s under new ownership now. And the smell of that place, the smell of gasoline, brake fluid and exhaust, brought all those memories of those good times flooding back, and it felt great.
One of my favorite bikes of all time, the legendary Yellow Bike
, a 1973 Triumph Bonneville that I customized into this awesome Cafe Racer. It won trophies in shows, it was featured in magazines...why the hell did I sell it?
ABOUT US: MY OWN CLASSIC CAR DEALERSHIP
I left there in 1998 to open my own dealership, which I named Camaro Headquarters, and I specialized in camping gear for dogs...no, I specialized in Camaros, and Firebirds, and Trans Ams. Mostly 3rd-generation (1982 to 1992) Chevy Camaros, and over the 5 years I owned that dealership, I sold nearly 500 of them. Toward the end, I opened a second dealership called Mustang Headquarters and started dealing in Mustangs, mostly Fox-bodies. What, you say? Camaros and
Mustangs together? Not exactly, but they were next door to each other. You see, there was no one in the Bay Area who specialized in modern Mustangs, only the guys who did the old classic Mustangs. So, they didn’t know who else to call. They’d call me at Camaro Headquarters asking for Mustangs. After laughing at the first few, I started to think, hey maybe I’m onto something here. I’m not such a GM snob that I can’t make a little money selling Mustangs too. So I did. And I sold nearly 100 of them over about 2 years. So it was good. I also sold a lot of other stuff including some classics, every generation of Camaro, some Corvettes, etc. and some very nice Harley’s and classic British Motorcycles. By 2003, the internet was kicking in to high gear and taking away a lot of business from guys like me. I saw a lot of my fellow car dealers struggling and I didn’t want to wait for it to happen to me, so I shut her down and went back into real estate. But I also started a website about becoming a car dealer like I was, specializing in a certain kind of car (like I did with the Camaros and Mustangs), and I sold online courses for $80, and sold a couple of hundred of them over a few years. But, not being in the business any longer, I felt my information was becoming dated, so I pulled the plug on it.
I also ride a Harley. This is my 2008 Harley-Davidson Dyna. Great fun.
ABOUT US: WEBSITES
While that website didn’t last, my desire to do more on the internet was alive and well. I just didn’t know what I was doing, and I certainly didn’t have a clue how to build a website. I attempted to have a site built about alternative energy, but spent a pile of money on two different outfits with big promises, but I never got the site I wanted. I finally learned how to build sites myself, through a program called SiteBuildIt! (SBI for short), and I built my first site, Classic-British-Motorcycles.com
. If you love old Brit bikes, you’ll love this site. I loved building it! But now I’m moving on to my other great passion on life, classic American muscle cars. And I’m looking forward to growing American-Muscle-Cars.net into the world’s greatest website on the subject of the cars we all love so much.
Above is the masthead for my website Classic-British-Motorcycles.com
ABOUT US: THIS WEBSITE
American-Muscle-Cars.net will soon be your go-to place
for all things Classic American Muscle Car. We will document and index every Classic American Muscle Car by make, then model, then year, then options and/or packages. In other words, you’ll be able to look up Chevy, then Chevelle SS, then 1967 model year, then once there, break it down by engines and options, all with dynamite, eye-popping pictures, specifications and history. We will also cover classic car auctions and car shows, we’ll meet with classic car clubs, we’ll interview Muscle Car luminaries, restorers, hot rodders, builders and racers. And we’ll have a place where you can buy or sell a muscle car. It’s all coming, but it will take some time to get it all together. So, please be patient, welcome aboard, and hold on tight, it’s going to be a wild ride!!
Me shaking hands with Ron Christensen, president of MidAmerica Auctions at one of their rockin' Vegas classic motorcycle auctions. Ron & crew are the greatest, and graciously granted me permission to use their pictures on my sites, starting out. Thanks Ron.
ABOUT US: SPECIAL THANKS
There are many people that I will end up owning a debt of gratitude to. But at this early stage in the growth of American-Muscle-Cars.net, there are few that I owe more to than the fine folks at MidAmerica Auctions. They have been hosting classic motorcycle and classic car auctions for decades. When I launched my Classic-British-Motorcycles.com
, I asked them for permission to use some of the photos of classic Brit bikes that they had on their website. They graciously obliged, and I have always credited them for any pictures I got from them. I also did several pages on my site about their classic motorcycle auctions, particularly my favorite, their raucous Las Vegas auction every January. Now I’m doing the same thing with the classic cars they have on their site. With their permission, I am using these photos to get this site started, always crediting them for the images, of course. Soon, we’ll have so many of our own pictures to draw upon, from all the auctions, shows and events we will be covering. But in the meantime, MidAmerica’s wonderful Muscle Car pictures are invaluable to us, and we thank MidAmerica for them all.
PLEASE LOOK AROUND AMERICAN-MUSCLE-CARS.NET:
CLASSIC CAR SHOWS
CLASSIC CAR MUSEUMS
CLASSIC CAR AUCTIONS
CLASSIC CAR DEALERS
AMERICAN MUSCLE CARS:
...............El Camino SS
...............Tri-Five Chevy (1955-1957)
...............Skylark GS/Grand Sport
FORD MOTOR COMPANY / FOMOCO
AMERICAN MOTORS / AMC
MODERN MUSCLE CARS, 2000 and newer
MUSCLE CAR ENGINES
Do you like Classic British Motorcycles? Check out our sister site at:
MORE TO COME FROM AMERICAN-MUSCLE-CARS.NET
WE’RE JUST GETTING STARTED
We are growing as fast as we can, gathering and taking eye-popping photos of awesome Classic American Muscle Cars, doing research on specifications and history, and writing content. We all love these great cars, so it’s not like work, in fact, it’s a blast. But it does take time. If you see that we’re lacking in some area, we just don’t have the photos and/or content yet to finish. Give us some time and as we get more eye-popping photos, we will continue to flesh out the site. Join us as we grow, but please be patient with that growth.
PS: Special thanks go out to Specialty Sales
) for the hundreds of eye-popping pictures they've allowed us to use. Specialty has 4 classic car showrooms in the San Francisco Bay Area full of gorgeous classics. We'd also like to thank The Goodguys
) for putting on some of the best car shows around, and allowing me to take all these great pictures. Thanks again to you both.
Learn how to build your own WEBSITE, like I did.