Chuck Berry was crooning about having “no particular
place to go…” on the AM radio in my ’68
Mustang coupe when I heard it—a clunk.
Maybe I hit a pothole. Or collided with a suicidal
squirrel. Chuck kept crooning but I listened past his
voice. Then I heard it again. Yup, a definite clunk.
The next day, it was off to my mechanic. His eyes always
light up when he sees this classic beauty pulling in
(and I’m talking about the car here). The verdict?
Motor mounts were shot.
Okay, no big deal. It’s not hard finding motor
mounts for a ’68 Mustang in New England. Not when
the Internet is at your fingertips. For as many classic
cars that are still on the road today, there are about
as many Web sites dedicated to them. There are even
more sites dedicated to putting these babies back together.
Whenever anything goes clunk or squeak on my Mustang,
I head over to Mustangs Unlimited [http://www.mustangsunlimited.com]
and search for the part, or parts, needed. The site
offers everything you need to get the engine purring,
but in addition to that, you can find every part imaginable
for the body—right down to the nuts and bolts
that hold the car together.
Maybe you’ve been lurking around the junkyard
and happened to come across a ’69 Chevy Camaro
that’s seen much better days. The junkyard guys
tell you it runs, but the body is being held together
with spit and shoe polish. She’s pretty much a
rust bucket on wheels. Now where are you going to get
fenders, rocker panels, floor pans and everything else
you need to make her resemble the proud Camaro she once
was? Mill Supply [http://www.rustrepair.com]
has been meeting the demands of body shops and do-it-yourselfers
for over 50 years.
James Schuld, advertising manager, said Mill Supply
Inc. has been family owned and operated since 1944 when
it began as a paint supplier to body shops in the Cleveland
area. In later years, the business branched out into
auto body parts for American cars and some imports.
“We became interested in the Internet in 1995,”
Schuld said. “I believe we have created a Web
site that is easy to navigate.” The site lists
over 4,000 replacement panel parts and someday, Schuld
said, each one will have a photo on the site. “Within
a few clicks, you can usually find exactly what you
are looking for.”
Simply click the make, model, and year of your car.
The parts page shows a diagram of the car with every
panel part listed by number. Scroll down the price list
and order all from one page.
Perhaps your classic is well on its way to being restored
and just needs that finishing touch. Maybe hubcaps.
While today’s cars have rims or cheap plastic
wheel covers, nothing says retro like hubcaps. Didn’t
you just love the endless echo of metal dinging along
the street when your hubcap would pop off and wave good-bye
as it scampered away from you? Since 1979 Hubcaps.com
has sold factory original new and used hubcaps directly
to motor heads in the general public at wholesale prices.
Located in Ontario, California, the company offers worldwide
shipping. So if your uncle in Australia needs hubcaps
for his ’67 Olds Toronado, you’ll know where
to find them.
The site is easy to maneuver through. Simply click on
the car make listed and look for your particular model.
Each page has photos of the hubcaps for each car’s
specific year. If for some reason you cannot find the
hubcaps you’re looking for, the company asks you
to call them at their toll-free number.
Maybe you look wistfully into that empty space in the
garage and think how a bomber of a ’69 Cadillac
Eldorado would fit just perfectly. But finding that
car in your neck of the woods is about as easy as getting
everyone to pay homage to the Chevy Chevette.
Instead of driving up and down the highway looking for
the classic of your dreams, hop on the information superhighway
and turn right at Autotrader.com
on Collector Cars, plug in the make, model, year, and
price range, and drool at the listings. Okay, if you’re
in Florida, you may not be thrilled to find out your
dream car is all revved up and ready to go about a million
miles away in Montana. So, narrow the search. Autotrader.com
lets you scale down the hunt by area code, state, or
region. This is how I found my Mustang, and it was only
50 miles away. Most of the listings have pictures of
the car, and all have detailed descriptions, along with
Of course, once you’ve purchased that classic
set of wheels and dolled it up just a bit, the next
thing you’ll want to do is share your story with
other motor heads. I mean, you can’t just rescue
a ’69 Pontiac Catalina from the back of the junkyard
and bring her back to life without telling someone about
Your story will only go so far with friends and neighbors—after
all they had to suffer looking at that junker sitting
in your yard all those months. But there are car lovers
just like you waiting to hear your story. Head over
to ClassicCar.com [http://www.classiccar.com]
and join the club. Click on “Story Submissions”
and get ready to write. As the site says, “Send
us your classic car stories, your reviews of a recent
car show you attended, your automotive history of that
classic in your garage, your personal restoration project
story, your pithy esoteric article on the deeper meaning
Need some help restoring that Catalina? ClassicCar.com
has an Ask The Expert link where you can e-mail your
questions absolutely free. There’s even a chat
room, gallery (yep, send in your pics), free newsletter,
message boards, and more. From this site you can also
find links to numerous car clubs and car shows and events.
Whether your classic is parked in the garage or still
a vision in your head, jump onto the information superhighway
and buddy up with motor enthusiasts like yourself who
respect a four-barrel carburetor, who have great admiration
for AM-only radio, and who suffer palpitations at the
site of shining chrome.
Linda Allardice is
a freelance writer with 20 years experience. She lives
in Massachusetts with her husband and two teen-agers.
And yes, she lets them drive the Mustang. She can be reached