We are Gear Jammin’ this Spring!
Remember when I kept saying that we’d shut down for January and February and pick back up again in March? Yeah… forget I said that, okay?
The NHRA finally got around to giving the Atlanta Dragway it’s schedule at the beginning of last week, and dropped a bit of a wrench into my plans—they put a 4-day Lucas Oil race on the first weekend in April, which is when I planned on doing the Spring 2-day swap meet; the week ahead of Charlotte.
What made things worse is that every other weekend was booked except the Gear Jam, which is April 23 (one day this year). I could have done a two-day swap meet, but then two weeks later was the May swap meet, so I was looking at no swap meet in April, just the Gear Jam. Being as how I like little things like eating and buying gas to drive places, and putting on a swap meet each month is how I do those things, no swap meet in April wasn’t optimal from a “Keeping Brad Fed And Entertained” point of view.
Then, moving to October, we had the SAME PROBLEM! A Street car race got the October 1 Saturday, and the track was booked again until the end of the month, which would have come too close to November’s swap meet, so the October 2-day the week after Fall Charlotte was a no-go as well.
On Thursday, NHRA Track Goddess Jodee Kennedy made a brilliant observation: The grass parking lot outside the fence is flat, it’s huge, and most of it will be unused for the race weekends. And BAM! Just like that, we were back on for the Spring and Fall 2-day shows bookending the Charlotte Auto Fair! Not only that, but we’re going to work with the race promoters to offer discount race spectator tickets for anybody from the swap meet that wants to watch the racing.
This has been a relatively mild winter so far, and lots of people have asked if I’d have a February swap meet. When it was looking like I was going to be short a pair of big shows, plus the inevitable rain days, I decided to add February. After the Spring and Fall 2-Day shows were restored… I decided to keep the February show and see how it goes. What’s the worst that can happen? (don’t answer that)
So, the 2016 season of the NE Georgia Swap Meet will kick off Saturday, February 13, the week after Moultrie.
Vendor set-up is 7am, gates open to the public at 8:00. The Priority vendor parking has been very well-received, and we’ll be doing it again this year—Gate opens at 6am. We’re still doing all the space you want, and we haven’t changed our prices.
Our show season dates are as follows:
April 1-2 Spring 2-Day
May 7/Goodmark Chevrolet car show
Sept. 30-Oct. 1 Fall 2-Day/Goodmark Chevrolet car show
The Gear Jam Vintage Drags, Car Show and Swap Meet will be Saturday, April 23.
Lamar Walden Automotive has come onboard as a sponsor for this year’s NE Georgia Swap Meet. We lost Lamar this fall, but his son Rob has been working at the shop since he was 12 and was Lamar’s full-fledged partner in the business. The race engine shop has been in its Doraville location since ’68, and Rob has no plans to change that.
Waldens were known for 348/409 engines, but they were also one of the first shops to develop LS engine performance, and have turned out some of the nastiest street, drag and road-race LS motors in the country.
Over the years I’ve done several stories with the Waldens, and one of the coolest services they offer is aluminum parts restoration. Their process makes parts look NOS. Cracks, broken bolt holes and busted fins are TIG welded and repaired, then erased so you can’t tell they were ever there, all holes are re-tapped and spot-faced, the surface is blasted and run through their reskinning process, and all machined surfaces are given a fresh cut. Intakes with an oil splash shield riveted to the bottom have the rivets pulled, they blast the shield, restore the intake, and reinstall the shield with the original rivets.
I’ve had them do an FE Ford intake, McBar Machine Company Olds Rocket-to-Ford trans adapter bellhousing, a few small block Chevy intakes, Corvette finned valve covers, and the oil filter adapter and timing cover for my Altered’s FE engine. Right now I’m working on a raw, unmachined Weiand 4×2 small block Chevy intake casting that I scored a few years ago—it literally will be NOS when they’re finished with it. The real gem though, is the finned aluminum Edmunds head for ’36-’59 Plymouth and Dodge flat 6 that I scored at a junkyard a couple years ago… It’s been blasted, re-skinned, all the bolt holes have been spot-faced, threads chased, and I’m about to helicoil the spark plug holes before taking it back to have the deck and thermostat boss skim-cut just to true everything up. By the end of the month, it’ll be the nicest example in the country of one of these extremely rare heads.
(and if I’m not careful, I’ll end up building a whole engine under it, which is the last thing I need to do, because then I’d have to build a car to put it in, and at this point, that’s just stupid. Doable, and potentially cool… but stupid. Really stupid… Probably.)
If you’ve got any factory or aftermarket aluminum pieces that need to be restored, give them a call—I guarantee you’ll be amazed. Check them out at lwaengines.com, or call Rob at (770) 449-0315, or shoot him an email at firstname.lastname@example.org(mailto:email@example.com)
Well how ‘bout that…
You know how I’ve always said we won’t “have something for the ladies” at the NE Georgia Swap Meet?
I just found out that it doesn’t necessarily matter—turns out there’s wimmin coming to the show to shop for vintage signs, vintage bikes, yard art and other cool stuff!
BUT, we still aren’t going to have a section for arts-and-crafts, jewelry, knick-knacks and stuff like that. We’re committed to keeping the NE Georgia Swap Meet a predominantly male-targeted event—We’ve all seen too many good swap meets get diluted with non-automotive/shop/basement related stuff, and once that happens, it’s the beginning of the end of a good show. So we’ll continue to limit our show to whatever would be found in a guy’s shop, garage, basement or office. Metal art, fine art, shop clothes and enthusiast T-shirts, vintage camping stuff (like the waaaay cool Coleman green metal cooler I bought last year), pin-up calendars, and yes, BBQ grills, are examples of non-parts or tools that are all welcome at the show.
That doesn’t mean you have to leave your ladies at home—drop ‘em off at the Tanger Outlet Mall and let them do some shopping too. A couple pairs of jeans, some new shoes, a new purse and whatever other block-headed clichés I can throw in here will make whatever you scored at the swap meet completely invisible. Just a little tip from your ol’ uncle Brad. (it’s amazing that I’m still single, ain’t it?)
NuTech Soda Blasting is back on board as a sponsor for the 2016 season—if you’ve got ANYTHYING that needs to be stripped, you need to go talk to the guys there… I’ve personally had steel, aluminum and fiberglass all stripped down to its essentials by them, in addition to doing a couple magazine articles on their process. Once it’s blasted, it’s metal-prepped and primed, ready for you to take back home and start bodywork. Stop by and talk to Lanie at NuTech Soda Blasting is in Jefferson, GA: call (706) 367-8107, or check out their website at www.nutechsodablasting.com.
New Parts For Your Project—ANY Project
So my buddy Bill just picked up a ’59 Chevy panel truck, and it’s gonna need a lot… patch panels, new wiring harness, suspension rebuild… you know the drill. JP’s Muscle Cars in Monroe carries a full line of suppliers for vintage and modern muscle cars—and those suppliers also carry full lines for just about everything, which means Bill will be able to order his stuff from Johnny and pick it all up at the monthly swap meets, saving a bundle in shipping costs. When it comes time to order parts for whatever you’re working on, make your first call to Johnny at JP’s Muscle Cars and see if he can hook you up with what you need. JP’s Muscle Cars is at 113 Hammond Drive in Monroe, GA: Call (770) 207-9570 or visit their website at www.jpmusclecars.com.
Yes, I know the websites are down!
I’m a Luddite… but I’m working on it. Should have it sorted out shortly.
Email reminder list
Our email reminder list is up over 4,400 names, and we’ve got over 3,000 people following us on FaceBook (North East Georgia Swap Meet). These are the two best ways to keep up on what’s happening with the swap meet.
If you’ve got any friends who would be interested in our swap meet, please forward this news letter, and tell them to shoot me an email to sign up for it. We’re adding 100 or more new names every month.
If you would like to be added to our monthly newsletter list, just shoot your email address to me at: firstname.lastname@example.org(mailto:email@example.com) , or text (706) 424-5035. If you know anybody who should be on this list, bootleg their email address to me! That goes for car club rosters, friends of friends, car-guy email chain letters… whatever.
This email was sent to firstname.lastname@example.org (mailto:email@example.com)
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Driven Events . 226 Springbrook Court . Jefferson, Ga 30549 . USA