Scottsdale, Arizona – January 2023 – Barrett Jackson Auto Auction Part 2

The Barrett Jackson Auction is so large that many automotive vendors have exhibits, with entire massive tents set up for them.

A company called Radical Racing of Canada build reasonably priced (for race cars) ready to race cars.

A prototype Lincoln Star.

A group known as the Future Car Collectors had a show on the grounds as well, with some very cool cars in a great setting.

Let’s take a closer look at the purple Lamborghini Diablo. Not really sure why they call it a future car collector, as this has clearly been collectable for decades.

A BMW M4

Volvo wagons aren’t normally the type of car to be tricked out, but it works.

There were some great paint jobs.

Another in the category of ‘not normally tricked out’ – a Tesla.

After checking out the Future Car Collectors show I made my way to a row of very long tents, with even more cars headed to the auction.

A customized 1935 Chrysler Airflow.

A 1930 Chevrolet Paddy Wagon.

1966 Cadillac Fleetwood Brougham Custom Sedan.

Another customized classic – a 1957 Lincoln Continental Mark II. Note the size of the tent, 5 rows of cars that was about 300′ long, and there were 6 of these tents in addition to the huge completely indoor tents seen in Part 1 of the auction.

Scottsdale, Arizona – January 2023 – Barrett Jackson Auto Auction Part 1

This is the first in a series of automotive postings from a fantastic day in the Phoenix area, starting with the legendary Barrett Jackson Auto Auction.

I went to preview day for the auction, so the facility was stuff with almost 2000 cars to be auctioned. In addition there was a complementary custom car show outside, as well as a collection of prototypes and other vehicles from the major manufacturers, and a collection of petroliana. Car junkie paradise.

We start with a 2021 Ferrari SF90.

2016 Porsche 911 GT3 RS.

The famous wing of a 1970 Plymouth Superbird along with a great roadrunner neon sign.

1960 Chevrolet Corvette Custom Convertible.

1959 Mercedes Benz 190 SL Roadster.

2005 Mercedes Benz SLR McLaren

1953 Chevrolet Corvette 235/150 Convertible.

1948 Chevrolet Custom Cab over Engine Pickup.

1968 Jaguar XKE 1.5 Roadster.

1953 Chevrolet Suburban Custom

1948 Chevrolet 5 Window Custom Pickup.

1935 Ford Deluxe Woody Wagon.

1940 Ford Custom Pickup

1965 Porsche 911.

Tucson – November 2022 – Car Shows

Because of the mild temperatures in Tucson throughout the winter, the car show season here is in full swing.

The snowbirds have arrived.

A local exterminating company has a fleet of VW Beetles for company cars, but only 1 stretch limo Beetle.

A wagon complete with matching picnic set and golf bag.

One of the shows was called Cops and Rodders. I was expecting a number of old police cars, but there was only one.

One of my pet peeves is most car show participants leave their hoods up to show off the detailed engine. Great for seeing the engine, but takes away from the lines of the car for photographs.

Hydraulics at it’s finest.

Imagine how challenging it was to cross the desert in the heat back in the days before most roads were paved. Extra water for the radiator was a must.

The second car show of the weekend featured Pontiacs.

And to think I learned to parallel park with a car this long – over 220 inches (5.5 meters) long.

Salt Lake City – September 2022 – Toyota Land Cruiser Museum

In an industrial area of Salt Lake City is an old warehouse stuffed full of Toyota Land Cruisers from over the years.

The original ones were based on a Willy’s Jeep, and by 1942 were in production. By the 1950s this vehicle had become known as the Land Cruiser.

The Land Cruiser is popular throughout the world, but has especially strong sales in Australia.

The Land Cruiser has been used for special purposes and expeditions throughout it’s history.

While the museum has a large collection, from a photography perspective it is difficult as they are all jammed in together, with barriers preventing from going between them for closer looks.

This, coupled with a fairly high entrance fee, made this a less than desirable stop for me.

Lake Havasu City, Arizona – July 2022 – Why?

As most people know the western United States is in the midst of a long term drought, where water is precious. In previous posts I have shown Lake Powell, at historic low levels. The same is true of Lake Mead, sitting behind the Hoover Dam.

Yet here in the middle of the desert is Lake Havasu, made possible by Parker Dam. It is constantly at 97%+ full. Why – because 100 year old water rights says parts of California get the water first, and Havasu is that reservoir.

What to do with that water – create an island out of what was once a peninsula, and use the 200 year old London Bridge to cross the channel.

Havasu City was created by an eccentric millionaire back in the 1960s who bought thousands of acres of desert along the reservoir, only to find that nobody wanted to come.

The city of London needed to replace the bridge since it was sinking into the Thames River, so they held an auction where, as legend has it, had 1 bidder – Robert McCulloch.

Once purchased, he had it disassembled after carefully labeling each block, shipped by boat 1/2 way around the world through the Panama Canal to the Port of Long Beach, then across the couple of hundred miles of desert to Havasu.

They then set to it building a bridge in the middle of the desert (water to come later). This photo is off the internet.

Legend also says that McCulloch thought he was buying Tower Bridge, but this has been debunked. Eventually he had his bridge, and it was a success – thousands of tourists came, and now Lake Havasu City is home to over 50,000 people, with probably 3 times as many here for the 4th of July weekend.

While you are there you can enjoy the sound of hundreds, if not thousands of people on boats and jet skis that have been towed hundreds of miles to this remote location by their giant trucks and SUVs, to cruise around and complain about the cost of gas.

The Colorado River leading up to Havasu is similar.

Another of the attractions of Havasu is a collection of replica lighthouses. There are 28 of the houses scattered around, many of them on private property (behind gates), so the only way to see them is by boat. We chose to drive to those we could get to.

The sun set on the roar of engines and the London Bridge.

As we left Havasu early the next morning we passed the solitude of a nature preserve. Ahhhh.

Lowell, Arizona – December 2021 – Rusted Ghost Town

Lowell, Arizona is just south of Bisbee, and today is officially part of the city of Bisbee. Not only has the town lost it’s population over the years, but it actually lost it’s land as the massive copper pit mining was expanded.

Today a portion of the main street remains, with a collection of old buildings, cars, trucks and buses – but it has a unique appeal. It is the scene of numerous photo and video shoots.

Buenos Aires – March 2020 – Cool and Funky Vehicles of Argentina

While we have returned to the USA to ride out this challenging time, there are some interesting topics that have yet to be covered on our time in Argentina. One of those are the funky vehicles of the country.

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Lets start with the city buses. Unlike most cities in the US, the buses in Buenos Aires are privately owned, and are known as Colectivos. They are very colorful, and run what seems like illogical routes.

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Note this line’s name – Nueva Chicago. Based in the south end of the city, the neighborhood was home to the stockyards. These stockyard came after the famed Chicago stockyards, so of course the neighborhood became known as ‘New Chicago’. Today the neighborhood is more commonly known as Matadoros, but the bus line retains the original name.

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This photo transitions us from the buses to the quirky trucks that haul all sorts of stuff around the city.

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I didn’t get enough of these trucks as they would just appear randomly.

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A stop of the Subte….  Buenos Aires has 6 different subway lines and it seems each has it’s own style car, including two lines that have cars with no air conditioning so the windows open.

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A trip to the country gives a good example of the number of huge old Mercedes Benz trucks that troll the roads of Argentina.

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Also in this area was this – an Argentina El Camino perhaps. So much with this scene, a funky truck/car, a gaucho and the drivers door open with no driver to be seen, and they were parked nowhere close to anything else.

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A jeep with some interesting replacement bodywork.

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A few beer trucks…Always very cool.

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A 1970s Ford LTD as a taxi way down in Patagonia.

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This guys mom must not have told him never to play in traffic. In reality we saw numerous street performers doing their act in traffic stopped at lights.

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To me it appears Buenos Aires has more motorcycles and scooters than any city in the Western Hemisphere.

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There are also a stunning number of nicely restored VW Buses.

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But in the end the cars are the best..

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The red streamer hanging off the back is supposed to bring you good luck and keep you safe.

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With the strong Italian culture in Buenos Aires you must have a cool old Fiat.

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A ubiquitous Buenos Aires taxi – low fares, a strange collection of vehicles all painted the same color scheme, and drivers who are even more interesting. I read horror stories of the taxi’s but we took them all the time with no problems. My favorite taxi ride was to go to a commuter train station, but the street to get us next to the station was one way the wrong way – no problem, pull onto the street one block up and BACK DOWN the block to get us there. At least we were pointed in the correct direction the entire time!

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And we end this posting with this stylish Cadillac that belonged to the one and only Juan and Eva Peron.

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Colonia, Uruguay – January 2020 – The Old Cars of Colonia

Before our trip to Colonia I had read often that there were a number of old cars running around town. I went with the expectation it was a ‘mini Havana’, in reality there were few old cars and trucks, and most of those were parked in front of restaurants as advertising.

Still those that were there, including a number of VW Beetles, coupled with the street scenes, provided good photo ops.

We start however with one of the ‘fast ferries’ from Buenos Aires. These ferries can go up to 60 MPH.

























































































With the tourist industry there were numerous places that rented golf carts and scooters, though most were not as cool as this one.





And with that we are headed on the ferry back to Buenos Aires – with the buildings of the city visible in the distance from 30 miles away.








Chicago – October 2019 – Open House V3.0

Late October means it is time for Open House Chicago – our 3rd straight year! As always there were hundreds of volunteers making sure your visit to over 250 buildings went well.



This year ended up having an emphasis on theaters and churches. We started with the Goodman Theater.







Just around the corner is the Nederlander Theater. Built in 1926 and operated for nearly 100 years as the Oriental Theater, it was recently renamed for James Nederlander, the founder of Broadway in Chicago.



It is the most ornate theater I have ever seen.






Our morning of theaters ended with the Lyric Opera Theater.





Chicago was for many years the mail order center of the world, and as such had a massive main post office, located next to Union Station. Today it is being redeveloped into condos.







The Monroe Building is located along South Michigan Avenue. Built in 1912 it has one of the largest collections of Rookwood Pottery tiles in the world.





The Seventeenth Church of Christ is a modern style church located amongst the skyscrapers of Wacker Drive. Completed in 1968, it has a unique look for a church.



For something totally different we made a visit to the Prairie Concrete Company. It is the largest volume concrete dealer in the country, with the capability of creating enough concrete for a 2 car garage every 90 seconds!

This is their only pink cement truck.









The hundred year old Motley School was closed and refurbished into apartments.





Our final stops were churches in Ukranian Village.