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Hoonitales: Thank You Misters Henry and Chris Hanzel

LongRoofian February 6, 2015 All Things Hoon 10 Comments

red tin

Please excuse this wandering all over, rambling on about nothing kind of post but if my fellow Hoons are interested, it is kind of tied together should you choose to hang around for it.

So this olelongrooffan has been a total slacker of late round there here parts. It’s not that I haven’t been doing the same kind of cool, well at least to me anyway, crap I always have been doing but I have been wondering just how many times this olelongrooffan can attend an event and share those experiences with my fellow Hoons without you guys and girls becoming totally bored with my offerings.

Well, this olelongrooffan is certain many of my fellow Hoons are wondering just what the hell does my sense of self doubt have to do with the red Citroen DS longroof tin plate in the above image. Well, actually nothing, but see that blue and white longroof in the second picture above that luggage rack? Well one just like it is what triggered this whole reflective post. But my fellow Hoons will have to make the jump to ascertain the connection.

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I don’t mean to be blasé about it but seriously, it hit home to me when I was up in the World Center of Racing for the Turkey Rod Run Thanksgiving weekend last year. thejeepjunkie and this olelongrooffan hooked up for an evening over at Belair Plaza and as we were walking around, he commented on how few images I was gathering up. I related to him that we had been attending this event, two disparate weeks a year for several days each week for nearly fifteen years and that I had been posting those experiences over in the Hooniverse for five of those most recent years. I know that over the past five years I have seen, in the flesh so to speak, no fewer than twenty different Volkswagen single or double cab trucks in various states of condition, from a slammed one at the VDub show a few years back to a pristine, fully restored one at the Barrett-Jackson show over in Fort Lauderdale Palm Beach just the year before last. And with a show of hands, how many of my fellow Hoons know that the storage compartment under the bed of that truck is known as “The Treasure Chest?”

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Now over on that book about your face, I follow a V.I.S.I.T. group and while some cool stuff is spotted, this olelongrooffan just can’t get excited about sighting a “bump sided” Ford pickup of the late 60’s era. But then again, I can’t be the only Hoon around who spots this kind of insanely delicious stuff. I mean, is the sighting of an all original Fageol moving van, circa 1953, something my fellow Hoons are interested in seeing more about? Yeah, it was spotted at the Turkey Rod Run in 2014. At the 2012 Rod Run, this olelongrooffan captured nearly 500 images. At the 2014 event? Less than 50, including the Belair Plaza images with thejeepjunkie.

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At the Roar Before The 24, this olelongrooffan did cruise around and spot some “Seen in the lot” action and captured an image of this BMW Super Car I know absolutely nothing about and actually care about even less. Now, if this were an E30 longroof, this olelongrooffan would have been all over it. And at the Roar this year, I didn’t even enter the paddock and garage areas. I attribute it to a lingering illness from the holidays and spent a lot of my time at that event sitting in the pilot’s seat of my longerroof in the spot where we park our motorcoaches for the Rolex24 at the west horseshoe intermittently napping and watching the practice session for the TUDOR series. I was awake to see the Deltawing stumble and hit the wall in that turn though. Sadly, we saw that team exiting the premises shortly thereafter. I guess fellow Hoon Skitter has some engineering tasks to address. The group I was with theorized the strong tail winds across the infield may have assisted in the destabilization of the downforce on that ride. But then, what the hell do we know?

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During one of my side Road Trips while on vacation for the Turkey Rod Run weekend, this olelongrooffan headed over to Belleview, Florida to check out Don Garlits’ drag racing museum. Unfortunately, much like my trip to the Revs Institute Museum, my elcheapo image taker was not up to the task of capturing images under low light conditions but the one of this trio of Max Wedges turned out relatively respectable.  But again, this olelongrooffan questions myself asking, “Is the sighting of some of these relatively rare early 60’s drag racers worth the time of my fellow Hoons?”

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Over at what this olelongrooffan will always call “The Collier Automotive Museum” but what is now known as “The Revs Institute” I spotted this buck of a Gmund Porsche used to reconstruct an actual Gmund Porsche that was found down in old Mexico and had been wrecked almost beyond repair. Luckily, fellow Hooniverse contributor Bradley Brownell reviewed the images I had gathered during that visit and directed this olelongrooffan toward a better quality image taker this olelongrooffan has recently acquired and another visit to that museum (Yes!) sporting that notsocheap image taker is in the near future. Look for some input from our resident Porsche expert on the history of this line of race cars. I’ll stick with the Trabant and the 2CV also featured in the Collier Automotive Museum, a museum this olelongrooffan first attended way back in 1994. At that time it was more industrial feeling and I even got to sit in an Indy car show car at that time. Alas those days are gone.

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And just a few weekends ago, this olelongrooffan attended the Southwest Florida Street Rod Nationals and spotted this sweet Merc Lead Sled, and no Kamil, that Merc does not refer to Mercedes. It was a beautiful work of art and around back there were PackardBaker taillights grafted in. And just to let my fellow Hoons know, I attended this show with my Cobra owning buddy, TheKenMan and his main squeeze, Goldie. Now TheKenMan is a Board Member of the Shelby American Automobile Club (SAAC) and owns somewhere around 37-40 different vehicles, mostly of the Mustang variety, although he loves ’34 Fords. Well, recently his daily driver Mini Clubman needed some $1,200 worth of new run flats and TheKenMan couldn’t quite part with those bucks that, according to him, “I’ll never get back.” So what did he do? Traded that Mini for a Buick Encore. Yeah, a freaking Buick. Anyway we took it to that show. It wasn’t so bad and it was the first Buick I had ridden in since my pop owned that 1973 Maroon and White LeSabre. Previously, this olelongrooffan shared the cool Willys Wagon I had seen last year at this show and is another sighting of a bunch of street rods really what my fellow Hoons want to see?

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But, alas, back to that blue and white DS longroof referred to up above. Late last month, this olelongrooffan, on a rare occasion, checked out the snail mailbox to which those uniformed members of the federal government deliver things to me. A surprise was in store when this USPS envelope, in Priority Mail livery, was spotted with a return address from out there in Californie land. An examination of the tag in the upper right hand corner revealed it had been posted on January 13, 2015 at a princely sum of $11.55 USD. Closer examination revealed the revered name of Hanzel on the return address! Well, my fellow Hoons, should you know of the name Hanzel, you will know that this olelongrooffan placed that parcel on the dashboard of my longerroof and highly anticipated the end of my business day when I could open that parcel and truly savor its contents.

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Well, Hoons, lo and behold, when I did have the opportunity to pierce the skin of that Priority Mail envelope, this envelope was contained within. Now this standard issue envelope had a postage cost of a mere $8.83 and was dated December 19, 2012. As it turns out, this envelope was mailed to this olelongrooffan back when I still called the Birthplace of Speed my home. And the reason it was mailed out to me in the first place? Well, in the fall of 2012, I had a feeling there was a fairly large shake up coming to the life of this olelongrooffan, and if my fellow Hoons have been following my exploits over the past couple years, you know that premonition was correct. Well, I had found the Hanzel Auto Body Works and the Seconds Saturday they host out there on the other coast on a semi regular basis. This olelongrooffan also realized that they were huge promoters of all things Citroen, especially the DS variety. As I had a tin plate blue and white DS21 longroof in my collection of over 400 diecast type automobiles, I kinda figured the Hanzel Auto Body Works would be a great curator of my tin plate long roof and forwarded it out to them to add to their collection of all things Citroen.

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I’m not real sure why the initial mailing laid in languish for a year and a half but it was returned to the Hanzel Auto Body Works on June 28, 2014. But it is true. Anyway, in my mailing of that tin plate DS out to that coast, I shared with the Hanzels that my Pops, TheGentlemanFarmer sported a 1972 DS 21 Pallas and this 17 year old longrooffan loved sporting it around and loved the fact that while all of my buddy’s at the time laughed at me about it, I knew how cool it, and TheGentlemanFarmer, was.

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Well, my fellow Hoons, contained in that USPS offering was the original letter this olelongrooffan had sent out to Californie as well as a letter from the esteemed Misters Henry and Chris Hanzel. And what motivation that letter provided! It was offered on classic Hanzel Auto Body Works service order letterhead and read as follows:

“Merry Christmas John

Thanks you for another year of entertaining & Hoonerful stories. I’m sure TheGentlemanFarmer would be proud of your wordsmithing skills. The apple doesn’t fall far from the tree. Your generous gift of the DS wagon holds top honors on our display case in the old Hanzel Auto Body Works office.

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I hope you find the latest issue of ‘Motor Trend Classics” entertaining.  The old truck has been in continuous use for the last 60 years, just like me. Keep the Hoonworld happy with your reports from the BIRTHPLACE OF SPEED!

Hoonfully,

Henry Hanzel and Chris Hanzel”

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Yeah, reading that letter sure gave this olelongrooffan the lift I needed to get back in the pilot’s seat and motivated me to, once again, continue sharing with my fellow Hoons some of the cool carp, again at least to this olelongrooffan, that I seem to see on nearly a daily basis. And if any of my fellow Hoons would enjoy perusing that article penned (so to speak) by the esteemed Jonny Lieberman about that legendary Hanzel Lift Truck feel free to follow this link.

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Meanwhile this olelongrooffan is gonna figure what cool crap I can find at my next automotive swap meet to fit inside this cool ass Citroen sack Mr. Hanzel sent my way.

Thank you so much Misters Hanzel for the thought, the motivation, your perseverance and the cool ass swag. Wishing you all the best kind Sirs.

Lede Image Shamelessly Stolen From Ebay
All Others: Image Copyright Hooniverse 2015/longrooffan

  • Rover_1

    Something about that BMW I8. It looks like it's giving birth to a Porsche 911, or maybe it ate too much.

    After all it is titled 'I ate'
    <img src="http://hooniverse.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/01/IMG_2860-720×540.jpg&quot; width="500">
    <img src="http://i.imgur.com/vR73rDo.jpg&quot; width="500'">

  • lil-red

    OLE LRF
    Glad to see you are back online, was beginning to wonder about
    you. I've said it before and i'll say it again, I read every one of your
    posts and thanks for showing us many things we would never see
    except through the lens of your notsocheapo now imagetaker.
    P.S. did you get my e-mail about the Diesel Falcon?

  • Glad to hear that you're back in the saddle Your posts have always been a highlight of Hooniverse, and that's saying something considering the cool stuff posted here.

    Any more pics of that Fageol moving van? That thing is awesome.

  • skitter

    (1.) You have a good eye for what's interesting. Even if you're a little jaded, those of us reading the posts enjoy the wild variety of vehicles you come across. (2.) Wish I'd known you were at either the Roar or the race. I would have found you to say hi. (3.) So the car took a little debris damage from the Highway to Help crash. [youtube gOK9YOWPTMM http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gOK9YOWPTMM youtube] At 20 seconds, you can see a piece of their windshield stick tornado-style about 4 inches through our tunnel inlet. We patched that up, but later determined that it reduced the downforce a little bit. Then Memo came into the kink a little hotter, with a little less downforce, looped it, and piled into the wall. [youtube tfITGccrb2A http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tfITGccrb2A youtube] He was trying to get reverse to drive away, but that car is a teacup compared to the DP sledgehammers. I leaned over to Gabby and said translate this from Driver to English for me: 'I think I tapped the wall.' He just winced. We got permission to leave early, because we had to install the totally new 2015 gearbox for the first time and start learning how to keep it from blowing up. Practice 1: 1.5 laps before transmission failure. Qualifying and night practice: 18 laps before transmission failure. Race: 42 laps before transmission failure. Baby steps. EMCO is remaking a bunch of parts with adjusted tolerances, and we hope for some long test runs before Sebring.

    • skitter

      Forgot to copy my text, and there's no edit button anyway.
      [youtube tfITGccrb2A http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tfITGccrb2A youtube]

      • longrooffan

        Skitter: I got up there for the Roar with some buddies. As I mentioned in my post, I was still recovering from a serious bout of sickness and barely ever got out of my longerroof that day, much less make the trek to the garages. I mentioned your name to my buds and related what you do with them. As expected, they thought it was cool as hell and, except for my Corvette driving friend, they all are now Delta Wing fans. Best of luck to you and your team this year. Incidentally, two of the three Hoonimas posters you gave me are hanging on the wall of my office. The third one? Well, thejeepjunkie thought they were so cool that I had to give him one for his man cave. Stay cool my man, stay cool.

    • Eric Rood

      Was gutted to see the DW out so early, especially when it clearly had the pace to do well. What gearbox did you guys run at PLM when it stayed together?

      • skitter

        That was the original gearbox, designed in 2011. It is incredibly light, and has some very thoughtful and creative features, but we didn't have any of the design documentation for it. Or the guy who designed it. So every time something broke we were starting from scratch, and making one piece stronger would usually make another piece fail. We never knew where to look for a factor of safety, and never found one. At Petit last year, it spat two teeth off second gear with three hours to go, so we spent the last three hours waiting for it to explode, and running 3rd, 4th, and 5th only, and reduced boost for the last hour. The actuator failed and it stuck in gear on the very last lap. It took us an hour after the post-race impound to fix it enough to roll.

        Around May 2014, we concluded that there was no way to fix it. We needed a new box with wider shaft spacing, wider gears, and a built-in limited-slip. In June, EMCO signed on to deliver a new design by December, which had them and us hyperventilating for six months until it was delivered in January. Now it's new and (still) untested, and this is a game of thousandths of an inch. We're working on getting a long list of Revision B parts in time to do some long runs before Sebring.

  • You know Longroof, when I'm at work and I see that one of your posts is up, I'll tend to leave it until I'm home and can sit back on the couch with a beverage and drink every one of your words in.

    It's like a little bit of Florida sunshine shining through my English patio doors.

  • Maxichamp

    Henry and Chris are good people.