Wednesday, April 30, 2014

Thank You, Weather

The past couple of years has seen poor weather at the Annual Sharonville Chamber of Commerce Classic Car Show. The spitting rain and cool temperatures had kept a number of people away. Many would register and then not bring their cars out in the inclement weather (at least they'd show up and buy their Show and Shine Calendar 

But this year's event was held under bright blue skies with temperatures in the mid-70s. You couldn't have asked for a better day to kick off our car show season.

Monday, April 28, 2014

Let the Season Begin

Our car show season began yesterday with the 37th Annual Sharonville Chamber of Commerce Classic Car Show. With beautiful weather there was a huge turnout. Well over 300 cars were on hand. I didn't hear an official number but by my count that would be a conservative guess. There were all sorts of makes and models on display and while I'm going to feature some marques and styles in specific blogs, much of what I'll post is in the order in which I saw it. Now understand that the organizers do a good job of grouping like cars together so you're going to see some makes and models in the same blog. Don't worry, I'm bound to come across your favorites at some point in time.

Sunday, April 27, 2014

Doing It Since 1977

Since 1977 the Sharonville Chamber of Commerce has been holding a car show in their lovely city. Over the years it has grown to one of the largest car shows in the region. For one thing, it is generally the first real show of the season and it allows people to brush off the winter dust and bring their cars out for the first time in a while. That is a major reason why so many people turn out each year for this event. And I'm glad they do.

Saturday, April 26, 2014

Show and Shine Calendar

For those of you in the Greater Cincinnati area, tomorrow "officially" marks the beginning of the car show season as the 37th Annual Sharonville Classic Car Show is held in the historic Sharonville Loop. Sponsoted by the Sharonville Chamber of Commerce, this is the show where everyone brings out their cars to show so it is always one of the bigger collections of cars.

As great as it is to see all of those cars come out of storage, lots of people show up to purchase their copy of the Show and Shine Calendar. Considered the "car show bible," this calendar lists over 1300 events throughout the year in Ohio, Kentucky, Indiana, Tennessee, and Pennsylvania. If you want to show your car or just go to shows, this is a must have. If you can't make it out to Sharonville on Sunday then you can order on from their web site:

I'll be out there tomorrow checking out all the cars and I'll have my copy of the Show and Shine. Make sure to pick up your copy and if you see me, be sure to say, "hi."

Friday, April 25, 2014

The Last From Swope's

It is well worth visiting Swope's Cars of Yesteryear Museum (, especially if you are traveling down I-65 between Louisville and Nashville. Stop off and spend a little time enjoy the cars. Not only is it free admission but you see cars like this Ford Model A. And check out the set of official Ford tools that are on display as well.
Next is a 1914 Ford Model T Runabout. The famed "Tin Lizzy" saw about 15 million cars made during it run between 1909 and 1927. This is the car that really turned us into an automotive society.

Here is a 1924 Chrysler 70 B Touring car. With a 201 cubic inch L Head straight six that had a very high compression, this car had a, for the time, remarkable top speed of 75 miles per hour. Chrysler rode this car to immediate success which allowed the company to soon buy Dodge and introduce the Plymouth and DeSoto lines.

Another successful Chrysler is this 1932 Sport Coup. Proving that bigger isn't always better, this straight six cylinder engine managed to keep up with most of the bigger eight cylinder offerings. This along with an affordable luxury made it popular with young professionals as well as many salesmen.

Another 1914 Model T, this a Touring, is on display at the museum. The availability and the importance of this car in automotive history justify its multiple examples.

The legendary GM designer Harley Earl was instrumental in the creation of the LaSalle line. One magnificent example is this 1931 convertible. The 345 cubic inch L Head V 8 generated 95 horse power.

Shortly before World War II Detroit was still making new car models. One example is this 1941 Buick Super Sport Coupe. Body styling was taking a major shift during this time but it was what was under the hood that really made this car stand out. It was powered by famed straight 8 Fireball engine.

There is muscle on display at the Swopes Cars of Yesteryear Museum. This 1969 Chevy Camero 350 SS Hardtop more than earned the muscle classification. The 350 cubic inch V 8 that powered it was one of the fastest stock motors coming out of Detroit at this time.

Another car flexing its muscle is this 1970 Cobra Torino SCJ. With a monstrous 429 cubic inch SCT Ram-Air V 8 with four valves and a four barrel carburetor, this car was just begging to race.

This 1935 Ford Roadster was one of the fastest and sportiest cars of its time. With a 221 cubic inch L Head V 8, this car could run with the best of them. That engine won a lot of fans, including Clyde Barrow of criminal Bonnie and Clyde fame who allegedly wrote Henry Ford a letter praising how the engine was perfect for powering a getaway car.

Competition for the '30s era Fords came form the likes of this 1931 Chevrolet Convertible Cabriolet. This was the year that Chevy introduced a popular, more powerful six cylinder engine that let it more faster but also reliably. 1931 was the first year Chevy would outsell Ford.

The last car I saw at this fine museum was this 1956 Ford Thunderbird. The Thunderbird was introduced to compete with Chevy's Corvette and actually outsold the Vette in its early years. Redesigns and restyles later converted it into more of a family sedan for a while but this first generation was pure sports car.

Thursday, April 24, 2014

More From Swope's Museum

Swope's Cars of Yesteryear Museum ( in Elizabethtown, KY is jammed packed with a variety of cars from the first seven decades of the automotive industry. Among them is this 1930 Dodge Six Cylinder Sedan. This five passenger car was a risk to produce during the Great Depression but Dodge did well with it.
The Hupp Motor Company is an example of one of the many early manufacturers who made good, reliable vehicles but eventually couldn't compete in a market that was growing more crowded. This 1930 Huppmobile Model C Victoria demonstrates their quality.
Another Packard in the museum is this 1931 833 Sport Coup. This is a classic Packard with the powerful eight cylinder engine, wire wheels and that rumble seat.
Another Packard on display is this 1933 Model 101. Packard, like most other car manufacturers and especially those making upscale luxury models, were limiting their production during the 1930s because of the Great Depression. For that reason only a small handful of this model remain.
Another Depression Era car is this 1932 LaSalle Convertible. LaSalle's were made between 1927 and 1930 and their demise was primarily the result of the Depression. They're perhaps best remembered as being mentioned in the theme song to "All In the Family."
The USA wasn't the only place that continued to make luxury cars during the Great Depression. England continued to turn out cars even as they were beginning the conflict that would become World War II. This 1932 Rolls Royce Phantom III saloon carriage exemplified the height of luxury.
Luxury models weren't the only cars to be produced during the Depression. This is a 1933 Chrysler Airflow Imperial C-10. It was a truly innovative car that shared some of its engineering with aircraft of the day. It reportedly had one of the most sturdy bodies in the world.
Here is a gorgeous 1939 Rolls Royce Wrath WRB 75 Sedanca DeVille. It features custom body coachwork by Gurney-Nutting. This car demonstrates that luxury knows no limits.
Here is a car that is believed to have been built for royalty. This 1921 Dodge Touring Car is believed to have been built for the Maharaj of the tiny kingdom of Bradehs in Indian. It was outfitted to be a hunting vehicle. Circumstances, including train robbers, kept the Raj from ever taking possession and the car was ultimately shipped to the US in 1947.
The car that revolutionized the industry. Here is a 1919 Ford Model T, the first model built on an assembly line. This allowed the cars to be built cheaper and faster and allowed Ford to sell more by making them affordable to the masses. This car really put the automobile into the hands of the middle class.
As a result of the Depression, Chrysler, in 1932 entered the field of more affordable, entry level cars with this Model PB sport roadster. Though it had luxury appointments it was stripped down somewhat using a 196 cubic inch four cylinder engine.

The last car for today is one of the oldest in the museum, a 1910 Brush. This 10 horsepower single cylinder vehicle could reach speeds of over 25 miles per hour. Not much but keep in mind that in 1910 there weren't paved roads. The car cost all of $600 when new.