Tuesday, October 17, 2006

As you learned in our last posting, Joyce and I enjoy all facets of the automobile hobby. This includes auto racing, i.e. NASCAR, dirt track, drags, endurance and Formula 1 to name a few. We also restore classic cars and currently have a 1966 Mustang coupe and a 1973 Corvette Stingray coupe. The Corvette is a “show car” and we are constantly spending weekends, during the late spring, summer and early fall on the car show circuit in the local area. To this date we have collected over two-dozen trophies for the Corvette to include “Best in Class” at the 2003 annual Concours d’ Elagance held by the National Council of Corvette Clubs.

Each year the Freestate Corvette Club, located near Baltimore, Maryland, hosts a “Corvette Weekend” at Ocean City, Maryland. This year we had decided to participate one last time in its most cherished event, the “Boardwalk Parade of Corvettes.” It also gave us the opportunity to try out our new car trailer as well as renew old friendships made while we were very active in the Corvette Club scene.

The weekend was gorgeous. The trip there an back uneventful. The fellowship was endearing. And the boardwalk ride was as exciting as ever. Check out the photos labeled “Corvette Weekend 2006”.

Thursday, October 12, 2006

Since Joyce and I are both gear heads, we seem to collect older motor vehicles that are not really daily drivers. Joyce’s project, a 1966 Mustang coupe, is a work-in-progress and is not really in road worthy condition. It has to be transported in a manner that does not require its internal power train to get it from point A to point B. My project, a 1973 Corvette Stingray coupe, is pretty much finished and although it can make it from point A to point B and back, we do not like to put too many miles it. It is a “show car” and when going long distances, it is easier to tow it rather than to drive it and then have to re-clean it for a show. Additionally, with our impending move to Georgia, we decided that a car hauler was the best way for us to get out vehicles and household goods to our new home in the “Low Country”.

I found a company on Ebay that sold a well know make of enclosed car hauler at a “very” reasonable price. It is manufactured in Douglas, Georgia, about 2 hours west of Savannah. We decided that this is what we wanted and promptly made arrangements for the purchase. We planned a trip to Savannah over the Columbus holiday weekend and arranged for the delivery to take place on October 9th, at the factory in Douglas.

We drove to Savannah on the 7th and stayed that night and the next morning at Berryoaks making notes. We departed for Douglas Sunday afternoon and spent the night there. The next morning we made our way to the factory and met with the owner of the trailer sales and the trailer manufacturing company. Once the deal was finalized, the owner of the factory gave us a tour of the plant. They have an assembly line where they manufacture the trailers as per individual order. We were very impressed by the handcrafting of these vehicles.

Once we had toured the factory we set about getting ready for the trip back to Maryland. This would be the first time I had pulled a large trailer (27 feet overall length) of this kind and I was hesitant about doing so. I had acquired an anti-sway hitch hoping this would reduce the problem large trailers of this kind experience on the road. It took a while to set the hitch up and connect the trailer to the truck so we did not leave Douglas until shortly after noon. We had hoped to be on the road by 10 AM.

It was evident within the first few miles that my choice of hitches was a good one. The trailer towed like a dream. Almost like there was nothing there. The truck, being made to tow big things, hardly labored at all. My confidence soared. Before long, we were cruising at the posted speed (65 mph) like the big rigs, except they were going much faster. We made it to Brunswick, Georgia, up I-95 through Savannah and into Florence, South Carolina before we stopped for the evening. The next morning we left at 5 AM and drove the remaining 470 miles getting us home around 2 PM on the 10th. Made it!!!! Another step completed. Check out the photos labeled “Toy Hauler”.