Tag Archives: 47 Hudson

A Louisville recap, Detroit, Chicago, Blue Belle, a Ridler Candidate and more…

Hey there Kids! We find ourselves back in a truck headed ‘North to (what feels like) Alaska’. Not in my truck, though. After our last episode in Louisville, I drove our rig (with the Hudson) up to a friend’s shop in the suburbs of Detroit to leave for a week whilst I flew home to be a dad, husband, boss and an employee.

The Hudson and its Louisville "booty"...
The Hudson and its Louisville “booty”…

In case you were wondering, we did well in Louisville and earned our remaining needed points to have a position in the ISCA Finals this year, located in a city we’ve never shown in, Chicago. Other than the distinct possibility of getting shot, I am looking forward to seeing what I understand is one of our Great Skating Rinks (also a lake?) and seeing how the Hudson places in the Superbowl of our industry.

Our tickets to the E-ride in D-town...
Our tickets to the E-ride in D-town…
Blue Belle's awards-Shreveport 2012
There aren’t many things prettier than Blue Belle, however Penny, her owner, sure gives her a run for her money…

Now we are back on the road, this time hauling our old friend “Blue Belle” and convoying with a new friend, Tim Palazzolo of GAP Racing and his as yet unseen “Stampede” project (a Ridler Award hopeful) to Detroit, then Chicago the following week. Blue Belle is a veteran to traveling to and competing in these shows, however Tim Palazzolo and his “Stampede” are rookies and taking a swing at not only a hit, but a Grand Slam, their first time at bat.  Also, wait until you see the dead Italian cows that were “unstitched” inside this little horsey by the crew at Compton Custom Interiors, another rookie coming to The Big Show.

JF Launier and his 2014 Ridler Award-winning Riviera
JF Launier and his 2014 Ridler Award-winning Riviera – there are no boundaries when it comes to automotive creativity at this level of competition.  
"Gold Digger" - the 2010 Ridler Award winner.
“Gold Digger” – the 2010 Ridler Award winner.
Yes, girls can play, too. Tammy Ray won the Ridler Award in 2010.
Yes, girls can play, too. Tammy Ray won the Ridler Award in 2010 with the “Gold Digger”. Ya gotta love the creativity in names as well…

In case you don’t know what the Riddler Award is, look it up. In a nutshell, it is the custom automobile world’s Olympic Gold Medal, and there is only one awarded – with no Silver or Bronze. All or nothing. Bold aspirations for a Houston-born, bad-ass “I can’t tell you yet”. Although we did not bodywork or paint this one, we were honored to have created the custom colors for it, wetsand and polish the entire clearcoat and tighten up a few loose ends. I’d love to show you images of the car and what we did, however the Ridler Award requires that the first showing be in Detroit and it be a true debut – not seen in public before, anywhere. So, think of a very fast horse and a color that is usually identified as sad -which this horsey is definitely not! Good luck to Tim and his crew at GAP Racing, although we doubt he’ll need it. Well, kids, its time to hit the Cracker Barrel, load up on eggs, bacon and coffee and head “norther”. I’ll do my best to keep the blog updated as we take this journey to some unexplored territory.

Until next time,

Randy

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The Ice Road Painter (& the Hudson) head to Louisville…

A shot as we were loading up from last year's show in Louisville...
A shot as we were loading up from last year’s show in Louisville…

This week I’m off to Louisville, KY for the 2015 Carl Casper Auto Show, another in our ISCA shows this season. We showed here last year as well and had a great time. As a result of the ISCA’s point system and our need for a “small” show in order to qualify for the Finals again this year and the fact that I really enjoyed the show last year, we decided to put Louisville in to our travel schedule this year.

As fate would have it, I am driving north, directly in to the wake of Winter Storm Octavia’s all too recent impact. I do love winter, snow in particular, however driving on ice is just plain stressful among other things. The highway itself wasn’t bad, though once exited and on the side streets it was a totally different story.

Hanging with the big boys...
Hanging with the big boys…

I was not able to leave the shop until about 1 pm today because of the demands of getting a friend’s project polished out in preparation for the Detroit Autorama in a couple weeks. I wanted to leave much earlier, yet the blessing in disguise was that Octavia had slipped on by and left her imprint on the landscape hours before.

Once I arrived at my hotel near Little Rock, I found the entire area covered in what looked like snow but was actually ice – and lots of it. I had to park the truck & trailer in a lot across the street, or was it a skating rink? Navigating to the hotel was quite a test of my balance and my boots’ grip.

The Parking Rink...
The Parking Rink…

For now, its time to go in to hibernation for the evening. Tomorrow we shall see how the continuing journey to the North develops. Patience Grasshopper, Octavia has left her mark…

vaya con Dios,

Randy

The 2015 GNRS and California in the rear view mirror….we thought.

We came, we saw…we did well. As we exit the 2015 Grand National Roadster Show, it is with several coveted awards…and no trailer brakes!

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First in Class, Outstanding Display and Outstanding Paint.

The good news is that the Hudson, amid probably the greatest collection of top-notch vehicles in one place that can be found, walked away with the awards for Outstanding Display, First in Class and my personal favorite – Outstanding Paint. Follow along and enjoyu a few of the things we saw over the weekend. I have over 500 pictures that I took that can be found HERE in an online album, if you’d like to see more of the show.

The Hudson is Blackie Approved…

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Just your average, everyday stoplight traffic in Pomona…
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The Hudson is in the House and set up begins…
Vans - they're making a comeback...
Vans – they’re making a comeback…
The Hudson is Blackie Approved…
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This really cool retro-racer was in line with me as we waited to get in the fairgrounds.
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Here is the winner of the 2014 Goodguys “Truck of the Year – Early” award. The Hudson was one of the 6 finalists, so its good to finally see the winner in person.
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The Hudson is set up and ready to show California how we do it in Texas…
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This hand-made aluminum bodied custom was nothing if not amazing…and sexy.
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This Rad Rides-built ’32 is one of my all time favorites. Years after its initial build, it still looks phenomenal.
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These two guys, painted by the inimitable Mike Levalee, are standing guard over the AMBR trophy that 18 cars showed up to fight for…
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The 2015 America’s Most Beautiful Roadster, built by Bobby Alloway and his talented team. Gorgeous car.
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This very interesting Dodge Brothers sedan is so well done. It was built by Dave Kindig and his team at Kindig-it.
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Speaking of sexy, this Packard custom looked too good in metal. It’ll be a shame to paint it…
It's worth another look...
It’s worth another look…
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Not my style, however the craftsmanship is enviable…
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Although seen in the Lowrider area, this clean Riviera would look at any show…
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Flames. Stripes. Candy Paint. Flake. Airbrushing. Its all there in one neat little package…
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Coolest dash ever…


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One last shot before we go. Last one out, turn off the lights…
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Let’s go home…

Well, its now Tuesday night and we are still here in California. We should be in Houston by now, but alas, our trailer had different plans. The right front brake caliper deemed it necessary to open itself up and allow all the brake fluid out of of the trailer’s “woah” system. I find it amazing that I’m in the second largest metropolitan area in our great United States and not ONE brake caliper for this 18 month old trailer can be found? Apparently not, so the parts are being over-nighted in from Indiana and we hopefully will be back on the road to Texas by tomorrow evening.

In the mean time, we sit in the home of some great friends spending time together that we would not have done otherwise, so we shall count this as a blessing and enjoy the lemonade we’ve made from our lemons. Our next trip will be to the Carl Casper’s 52nd Annual Custom Auto Show in Louisville, KY on February 20-22, 2015. We hope this finds all of you doing well and looking forward to the next blog. Stay tuned…

Until next time,

Randy

Grand National Roadster Show, here we come…

Off we go again. This time, to the West coast for the 2015 Grand National Roadster Show. If you’ve never seen this show, you should. The indoor show is phenomenal by itself, being housed within 8 ‘not small’ buildings. As if that isn’t enough, they also have a ‘drive-in’ show that fills the fairgrounds between all the buildings, bringing in another 500 or so cars. Many of the cars seen outside could easily fill the front row of any other indoor ISCA event. In other words: its an Automobile Nirvana that every car lover should experience at least once in their lifetime, if not every year.

The Rig is loaded and ready to roll west...
The Rig is loaded and ready to roll west…
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We stopped near Area 51 to say “Howdy” to a few intergalactic undocumented workers…

 Day one took us northwest through the Nation of Texas and in to New Mexico. We followed our noses to Ruidosa and finally found some snow. Ok, a little left-over snow, but snow nonetheless. Old snow is better than no snow in my book.

Ruidoso will see us again....
Ruidoso will see us again….

The next morning we left on our trek to reach Flagstaff, AZ, a city that houses my favorite haunted hotel, the Monte Vista. Because I’m always up for an adventure, we took the less traveled route, through the mountains, valleys and high desert of New Mexico and Arizona. I won’t deny to having the ‘wanderlust’, so a new road is always intriguing to me. Dragging a 36′ trailer filled with all kinds of treasures just adds to the adventure.

The Very Large Array
The Very Large Array – who names these things?

During our journey to the NW, we stumbled across “The Very Large Array“, a curious display of what appear to be old-school satellite dishes, however they are quite a bit more than that. This creatively-named, Y-shaped grid of 27 huge radio telescopes (each is 82 feet in diameter) has been placed out here in BFE with the task of seeking out data about black holes, our sun and planets, the Milky Way and galaxies beyond. Together they create the same effect as an antenna with a resolution 22 miles across. Amazing stuff indeed and WAY above my pay grade.

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Big Bank meet Small Town – lobby, drive-thru, ATM and handicap parking.
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A time capsule found in Pie Town (?), NM…
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‘Wood’ you believe we saw an alien even though we were a couple hundred miles from Area 51?
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I’m not sure if this is a pre-historic bodybuilding pose or if he was frozen in time doing The Robot? Either way, he was a big dude, standing over 10′ tall…
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No words, just cool…
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We finally arrived at our haunted digs, the Hotel Monte Vista. I stay here every chance I get…

As luck would have it, the Ghost did not make herself known – this time. However, ask me about the first time I stayed here, if you get the opportunity. Before we left, we found a little place called MartAnne’s Burrito Palace (Breakfast Palace is more like it). It seemed logical that breakfast would be fantastic here…and it was. Consider this my new favorite restaraunt in Flagstaff. Fine job, MartAnne’s.

Martan's Burrito Palace served the best breakfast I've had in a long time...
MartAnne’s Burrito Palace served the best breakfast I’ve had in a long time. There are eggs in there, I promise…
A 'guided' detour to Barnes & Noble in Kingman, AZ, courtesy of Google Maps, led us to...nothing. And I thought Apple Maps was the bad one?
A ‘guided’ detour to Barnes & Noble in Kingman, AZ, courtesy of Google Maps, led us to…nothing. And I thought Apple Maps was the bad one?
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The rig gets a much needed bath. $54 well spent…
This seems to be a good value, I'll let you know....
This seems to be a good value, I’ll let you know….
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Aahhh, the infamous LA ‘fog’…

1584 miles, 5 apples, 37 Tootsie Pops, countless pee stops and one Haunted Hotel later, we’ve arrived in Pomona, CA. For now we wait; tomorrow the “hurry up” begins as we set up the Hudson for its debut at the 2015 Grand National Roadster Show. For now, I’m signing off. Stay tuned to our Instagram and Facebook pages for updates to the Hudson’s first trip to the West Coast.

vaya con Dios,

Randy

Chattanooga in the rear view mirror…

The spoils from the 2015 Chattanooga World of Wheels.
The spoils from the 2015 Chattanooga World of Wheels.
Being selected in to the "Fantastic 5" competition was a pleasant, and unexpected, surprise.
Being selected in to the “Fantastic 5” competition was a pleasant, and unexpected, surprise.
The Fantastic "One". Best of Show and well deserved.
The Fantastic “One”. Best of Show and well deserved.
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Gorgeous little Chevy II won the big award. Congratulations to the owner of a car that is “the bomb”…

And just like that, the “hurry up and wait” of the 2015 Chattanooga World of Wheels is over. The Hudson is loaded in the trailer, along with all the various display items that make the task of showing these vehicles actual work. Don’t get me wrong, I love seeing the people gathered around the truck, asking question or making comments, however the set up and then inevitable tear-down process is neither a quick nor easy task.

One show truck display - just add cheap labor...
One show truck display – just add cheap labor…

The show itself was fantastic. I was pleasantly surprised not only by the awards, but the crowds that showed up all weekend. The charm of a small-ish southern town is evident here in Chattanooga and I hope to be able to visit again and take in more of the history I was able to sample on my impromptu tour of the town on Saturday afternoon.

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Yeah, I had one. Wouldn’t you?
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The Dome Building – very creative name on a very cool building.
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The ‘heart’ of a gorgeous old Catholic Church built founded in 1852 and built in 1889.
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The remnant of what must have been a gorgeous Methodist Church built in 1881.
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I find these ‘wedge-shaped’ buildings oddly interesting….
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The domed ceiling and lobby of the former train station in Chattanooga. It is now a hotel where you can stay in actual luxury Victorian train cars. Next time for sure…
The Choo Choo Hotel. It was "rail-ly" nice inside...
The Choo Choo Hotel. It was “rail-ly” nice inside…
I had no idea...
I had no idea…
And there it is. The Choo Choo...
And there it is. The Choo Choo…

I have to thank my crew at PAINTHOUSE, because without them, none of this is possible nor would we have anything worthy of showing off. Lastly, a special bucket of thanks to Jason McPike for trusting us to bring his cool Hudson to life and for allowing us to take it around and show it off.

Now its time to put my ample arse in the driver’s seat and get back to the Lazy B Ranch. Until next time…

Randy

Goodguys Truck of the Year???

Photo 20141013130256We took the Hudson up to the 2014 Goodguys Lone Star Nationals in Ft. Worth last weekend in hopes of becoming the 6th and final Finalist for the Goodguys’ Truck of the Year – Early (pre-’53). We arrived just in time to line up amid well over 100 phenomenal trucks all vying for the last spot in the coveted contest. Only in Texas could you see this many “over the top” trucks in one place.

Photo 20141013130257In a effort to for once write a quick, to the point blog, we were selected as the 6th national finalist to compete for the coveted Truck of the Year – Early Award. We cannot thank the Goodguys organization enough for the privelidge and honor of the selection.

I am not sure when the selection is made, as I understand they do it by “committee” in their offices versus at the actual show(s). I guess that is because the 6 finalists are chosen from select Goodguys events around the country versus from one show as with the “Street Machine of the Year” and “Street Rod of the Year” awards, among others. So, we wait. Presumably, the selection will be made this week and the winner announced.
Whomever the winner is, they will be invited to appear at the final Goodguys show of the year in Scottsdale, AZ next month. If the stars all line up, hopefully we will be writing again from sunny Arizona. Stay tuned.
One of my favorite moments was when this young man walked up to me, stuck out his hand and said, “Hi, my name is Hudson”. He proved to be a polite, interesting young man with a great handshake. Someone has done a great job planting the right seeds in Hudson. I hope to meet him again.
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Two Hudsons in one picture