Real Hot Rods — Every Car Show Has to Have Some

Back in 2010, I did a short post about how every car show should have some real hot rods: T-Buckets, that is. At the time, I included a little Picasa slide show with some real hot rod T-Buckets and just converted it to a YouTube video because some of the Picasa online features are going away. So, now’s a good time to repost that story with the updated video included. Hope you enjoy it.

Every Car Show Has to Have Some Real Hot Rods

When looking at coverage of a car show on a North Carolina news site, this caption under the photo of a nice looking T-Bucket said it all, “Every car show has to have some real hot rods.”

T-Bucket Real Hot Rods Dan Collins

That perceptive writer captured the essence of it: T-Buckets truly represent the definition of a “hot rod”.

I cringe everytime a manic John Force hops out of his generic funny car representation of a modern-day Ford Mustang and refers to it as a “hot rod”. To me, that description is just as far afield as if Steve Jobs had unveiled the new iPad and referred to it as his “ham radio”.

Jim Unruh Real Hot Rods T-Bucket

But, back to “real” hot rods at car shows. All you have to do is observe where the crowds congregate, where the most pictures are taken and where the most questions are asked of the owners of the embodiment of a real “hot rod”, the T-Bucket. These fenderless, engine out in the open, roadsters with virtually all their mechanicals exposed are crowd stoppers everywhere, and have been since their inception. Why else do you think the high dollar Deuce, big buck Boydster, and other life savings sapping street rod owners look down on these innovative attention getters that can be put together on a working man’s budget?

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3 thoughts on “Real Hot Rods — Every Car Show Has to Have Some”

  1. I’m 64 years old, and came from what was a small town in Southeast New Mexico. It was the identical type of town seen in the movie “American Graffiti”. The ‘Jock’s’ had the T’s, and us poor kid’s got to look at them. When I “Officially” retired, I talked continuously about always wanting to build a T. Finally, my best friend got tired of listening to me and she begged me to do it.
    Not knowing where to start, I ordered Chester’s book ‘How to build a T-Bucket Hot Rod Roadster for under $3,000 bucks’.
    Needless to say, it was the best money I have spent in a long time. It got me started. Although I’m still building the T, any time I run into a problem, I can usually find a solution in his book. I would definitely recommend it if you are going to build one.

    Reply
    • Thank you very much, Tim, for your nice comments about Chester Greenhalgh’s “How to Build a T-Bucket” book. That’s great to hear and I’m passing it along to Chester.

      You’d be surprised how many T-Bucket projects are multi-year endeavors. It’s pretty normal to start out with a particular vision for your build and along the way you see new things and inspirations and it just evolves, and takes longer than originally planned. But, the result is worth the wait!

      Reply
  2. I couldn’t have said it better myself. But lets not overlook the attention that unfinished rods get at these street meets. Hotrodders everywhere love to look in on the development as a rod progresses, especially those who are in the process of building one also, you just feel at home around an unfinished rod, and naturally fall into talking with whoever has the rod. talking about your own project. This is the main attraction in a rod meet for me, and I’ll walk right by a ‘Boydster’ $100,000 rod without a second glance at it, except for wishing no one was around so I could piss on it.
    Chester

    Reply

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