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The Automotive Chronicles

Monthly newsletter published by McLellan's Automotive History. Dedicated to literature collectors, restorers, museums, publishers, manufacturers and investors who collect and preserve automotive literature
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January 2013 Issue
 
ARTICLE
At Home in Your Garage
By Robert McLellan
 

Unless you are south of the equator, you are experiencing a winter chill and your collector car is probably going to see less time on the roads until Spring. It is a good time to read a book or work on your car. That book may be a shop manual or other technical information that will in get your car back to perfection for another year of enjoyment.

When the old car hobby began in the 1930s, the old cars were simply the first cars built from the mid 1890s up to World War I. These "Brass Era" or "Veterans" were desirable enough to preserve for fun and memories of the past. While parts were hard to find, the cars were not. They were cheap because they were scrap yard junk to be melted down. Because these cars were simple, they were easy to repair and make parts for, and were frequent seen at parades and other festive events. They stood out from the modern 1930s cars and a culture began of old car hobbyists writing books to explain how to maintain and restore these vehicles. Working on them was fun and to understand how they worked, you simply took them apart and reassembled them. Here are two videos produced in the 1930s by Chevrolet demonstrating some of the aspects of how cars work that even a engineer will find fascinating. Most of us take differentials and transmissions for granted but could we explain to someone how they work?

 
How Differential Gear works
 
Car Transmissions & Synchromesh:
"Spinning Levers" 1936 Chevrolet Auto Mechanics 10min

 

Often it was mechanically inclined individuals who had tools and who would restore these old cars. Who was more qualified than a auto repair mechanic? A service station often had an antique car sitting out in front for advertising their business of servicing cars, in addition to selling gasoline. Manufactures and service companies of the 1930s promoted the old car hobby and it was popular to give away Christmas calendars with photos of the early cars and other old car memorabilia. Soon the hobby expanded to the garages and workshops of home owners as a evening and weekend hobby for many automotive enthusiasts. Remember, back in the 1930s we did not have television, the kids were doing their home work or playing with toys and Mom was sewing clothes while listening to the radio or canning fruit. To the enthusiasts, their garage became more that just a place store a car. It became a shop to restore a car and hang posters and memorabilia.

Visit our newly rearranged books section and select the makes and subjects that interest you. There is information here that will make working on you car easy and more fun.

Make your garage a home for you and your car with entertaining automotive memorabilia. Hundreds of posters, some originals dating back to the 1930s, to chose from plus hundreds of other items...

 
 
 
The Automotive Chronicles, January 2013
 
 
 
 
 
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