I gotta hand it to our readers. You guys really came through by sending in photos and specs for your project cars in progress. We're talking about car projects that haven't been finished, but that doesn't lessen their importance, especially to the people who own them. When you think about it, the number of unfinished project cars is much larger than the number of completely finished cars.
Unfinished projects can be finished cars that are being refurbished or repaired, they can be stalled projects that are dormant for years, they can be inherited projects from family members or parties who lose interest, they can be brand-new cars, or even kits like the new '69 crate Camaro. But the largest group of unfinished projects are the ones we thought were finished, until we saw something else that needed upgrading. In a sense, all our projects are unfinished until the day we sell them, or head to that big burn-out box in the sky
Here's the way I see it: When you go to the track, the cruise-in, or the car show, you're seeing the surface of an ocean-just the water on top. But underneath the surface, in hundreds of thousands of garages across the country, there are way more cars that we can't see. It's a deep ocean. When the economy goes bad like it did last year, our hopes and our dreams don't simply disappear. They slow down, or get put on hold, but they're always alive. For a lot of you, the pilot light of hope is right there in your garage.
Regardless of age, income, profession, hometown, or brand preference, the 109 readers in this month's issue all feel the same fire burning inside to complete their projects. Some are just starting, while others are coming in the home stretch, but all of them took the time and effort to photograph their cars, write about their experience, and send those musings to us by the deadline. And for their efforts, we owe it to them to print every last one that was sent in.
The task of reading and editing all of them fell to myself, and tech editor, Liz Miles. It ate up weekends and long nights, but it never got boring. Why? Because every single reader was amped up when they started their project, and their decision to write about them for PHR only heightened those feelings. My only regret is not having more room in the magazine to put more pictures and information about each one of them.
As a point of interest, you may be interested in knowing that of the muscle car projects sent in, 70 percent of them were GMs, 20 percent were Fords, and 8 percent were Mopars. The rest can only be described as "other." Parsing them out into build style is a little more difficult because many readers either haven't decided yet, or their vision isn't easily categorized. (Does a 16-inch wheel make a car a Street Machine, but a 17-inch version of the same wheel make it a Pro-Tourer? Should a car with 20-inch wheels and drum brakes be classified as a Resto Mod, or a Street Machine?) By my reckoning, about 40 percent were street machines (hot street cars with 15- or 16-inch wheels), about the same 40 percent were Pro Touring machines (17-inch or larger wheels), about 10 percent were Pro-Street (no 'splainin' needed), and about 10 percent were restorations or resto-mods.
I hope for each and every one of our readers that seeing guys like yourself in similar situations gives you the desire to finish your own project. You are not alone. There are other guys in your neighborhood hiding Detroit iron behind closed garage doors. You are the hidden ocean beneath the surface!
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