Last Call- The Slow Café Edition

Robert Emslie January 27, 2015 Last Call

Cafe Moped

Even if you can’t go fast, it’s always nice to at least look fast. This little Super Cub may not be ready to set any TT records, but it sure looks like it would like to try. I especially like the copper plumbing T fitted to the top of the carb. That’s got to add at least 1 mile per hour to the top end.

Last Call indicates the end of Hooniverse’s broadcast day. It’s meant to be an open forum for anyone and anything. Thread jacking is not only accepted, it’s encouraged. 

Image: Motrist

Friends of Hooniverse- Let’s Help a Hoon

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If you’re like me and do your own wrenching, then one of your first stops before tackling any unfamiliar project is bound to be YouTube to see if there is a how-to video for the task at hand. As a new owner of an old Volvo (more on that another time) one of the best channels for car repair that I have found is Robert DIY, which is done by a gentleman named Robert Spinner.

Spinner’s videos are comprehensive and he explains things in a real down-to-earth manner that makes everything really easy to follow. Helping Hoons with car repairs isn’t the only thing that Robert has been dealing with. He has also been taking care of his ill wife for the past five years and that has meant both that he hasn’t been able to maintain a steady day job, and that money is, as you would imagine, tight.

Robert has been so helpful to others that his friends want to help him out too. They have set up a gofundme Robert Spinner Thank You Fund where people can make donations to financially help out Robert and his wife . The good folks at FCP Euro have done so, and so have we. It’s been pretty successful too, the original $5,000 goal having almost been doubled so far. That of course doesn’t mean that the help should stop.

I encourage you to check out Robert’s video channel, and the gofundme site. We’re not pressuring anyone to donate, only trying to generate awareness of someone who has given a lot to the automotive community and whose friends now want to return the favor. If you consider all the automotive knowledge shared in the videos above, I’m sure you’ll agree it’s a worthy cause.

Image: YouTube

Track Tuesday- Name That Track

Robert Emslie January 27, 2015 Track Tuesday


Welcome to Track Tuesday where you are asked to identify a famous race course from just one closely-cropped aerial image. The only other hint you get is that this track is in…the Western Hemisphere. Good luck!

Image: ©2015 Hooniverse/Robert Emslie, All Rights Reserved

Hooniverse Asks- Do You Use Classic Car Insurance?

Robert Emslie January 27, 2015 Hooniverse Asks

oops LeMans

I have just recently made the move to classic car insurance for my 1971 Datsun 240Z. The mileage limitations mean that I probably won’t be using it to see all 48 continental states anytime soon, but the cost savings over daily driver insurance is eye opening. I also like being able to tell people that, uh, yes, I have a classic car.

One of my favorite bits from the TV show The Simpsons is when, after his house is destroyed in a hurricane, Ned Flanders reveals that he doesn’t have insurance because he thinks it’s a kind of gambling. Insurance is weird in that you’re paying for an eventuality that you hope never comes to pass, so I guess Ned was right.

I’ve tied my classic car wagon to Hagerty’s star, and I was wondering if any of you have likewise covered one of more of your treasures under a similar minimal-use policy? If so, who is your carrier, and have you ever had to file a claim? How is classic car insurance working out for you?

Image: StreetLegalTV

Last Call- Tomorrowland Edition

Robert Emslie January 26, 2015 Last Call


I think this clever reimagining of this ad is the future we always imagine, but that we never seem to reach.

Last Call indicates the end of Hooniverse’s broadcast day. It’s meant to be an open forum for anyone and anything. Thread jacking is not only accepted, it’s encouraged. 

Image: Go Away Garage

Hoonivercinema- Monday Movie Trailer

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Considering all the car chase and crash movies made in the early ’70s it’s a wonder that there are any automobiles from the era left at all. If you believe Hollywood of the time, Detroit’s main purpose was to churn out cars that were predestined to end up in a roadside ditch or upside-down. One of the purveyors of this impression was Steven Spielberg, whose first full-length film was the TV movie Duel, and whose first theatrical feature was The Sugarland Express. Both of these films demonstrate a general distain for the automobile.

The Sugarland Express was released in 1974 and was not just directed by Spielberg, but was co-written by him as well. The story is based on an actual event but is heavily embellished. It’s about a woman – played by Goldie Hawn – who breaks her husband – Ghostbuster’s William Atherton – out of jail, and then leads every cop in Texas save for one, on a low-speed chase across the state. Hawn’s character is determined to be reunited with her baby, which the state has taken away. The one cop not involved in the chase is in fact in the car with Hawn and Atherton, having been kidnapped by the pair. There’s a good bit of Stockholm Syndrome thrown in for good measure, but mostly what this movie is about is two-lane and highway chases.

Those involve a slew of ’60s and ’70s American iron, but it seems like Buick get’s the star treatment. There’s a sweet 1956 Buick Roadmaster, a ’63 leSabre, ’65 Electra, and a ’67 Riviera all getting in on the action. And that action typically involves lots of tire squealing, body roll, and wayward hubcaps from those plus all the cop cars chasing the baby-seeking duo. The trailer after the jump was crated for a video release, and it gives you a good sense of the film’s tone, as well as a bunch of that car action. Check it out. … Continue Reading

Hooniverse Asks- What’s the Most Under-Appreciated Straight Six Engine?

Robert Emslie January 26, 2015 Hooniverse Asks


The straight six engine, despite its inherent balance, simple single head design, and economy of construction, has been mostly supplanted by the V6 in the automotive world. The V6, owing to its odd cylinder count per bank is not naturally balanced, but at 60° it’s typically narrower than a V8, and frequently shorter than an inline four. That’s a benefit in FWD cars, and those which need to meet pedestrian safety standards as the more compact designs allow for more hood crush-ability.

But the V6 lacks the above noted benefits of their straight six brethren, as well as the romance of a sleek inline. There have been a number of venerated straight sixes over the decades – the Jag XK, BMW’s glorious M-series, and Ford’s never-say-die Falcon six springing immediately to mind. And of course the Corvette was originally available exclusively with a straight six, the 235-cid Blue Flame Special.

Those are all well known and generally publicly acknowledged straight six engines, but what about the unsung heroes of the straight six club? Which engines do you think are deserving of veneration, but haven’t yet had their time in the spotlight? What in your mind is the most under-appreciated straight six engine?

Image: Hemmings

Last Call- What’s My Name Again? Edition

Robert Emslie January 23, 2015 Last Call

MonteroThe owner of this Nevada Mitsubishi doesn’t ever, EVER, want to forget which model it is.

Last Call indicates the end of Hooniverse’s broadcast day. It’s meant to be an open forum for anyone and anything. Thread jacking is not only accepted, it’s encouraged. 

Image: Imgur


Mystery Car

Robert Emslie January 23, 2015 Mystery Car


It was on this date in 1983 that The A Team premiered, bringing into the lives of TV viewers four Vietnam vets, framed for a crime they didn’t commit, and who while on the run from the military police still had time to aid other innocent victims facing similar fates.

The fate of today’s Mystery Car solution remains in your hands, and while you probably don’t have MPs on your tail, you might want to snap it up before someone else offers the solution. Don’t be too quick however, as we want the full make and model – I’ve given up on those other bits.

Image: ©2015 Hooniverse/Robert Emslie, All Rights Reserved


Hooniverse Asks- Seventh-Generation Toyota Celica, Brah! Or Blah?

Robert Emslie January 23, 2015 Hooniverse Asks


When it comes to new cars, there aren’t that many sporty FWD coupes around. This was a category that used to be rife with competition – you couldn’t swing a dead cat but for hitting a Prelude, Eclipse, Scirocco, or, in its later years, a Celica – and most all of those cars were pretty darn fun to drive. I think that the seventh generation of Celica – its fourth since making the switch to front-driver – is also one of the most arresting car designs ever offered on a small coupe.

Now, I know we all like our sporty cars to be rear-wheel drive and manually transmitted, but considering the space and cost efficiencies of front wheel drive, and the fact that almost all the little sporty cars were based on more plebeian sedan hardware, it’s simply a fact of life that understeer was going to rule the day in these economical but engaging rides. The seventh series may not have offered AWD and an intercooled turbo mill like the Alltrac editions of its closest predecessors, but the 140-bhp produced by its 1.8-litre VVT-i four was a pretty good starting place. With 180-horses on tap, the 2ZZ-GE-powered GT-S gave drivers even more to play with, and both of those engines could be paired with a 6-speed stick.

Not only was the Celica in its early aughts guise a looker and a reasonable performer, but through Toyota’s performance arm, TRD, even more fun could be wrung out of the platform. The thing of it is, these days you hardly ever come across one of these Celicas that hasn’t been marred by some spectacularly horrible body kit. I know owners want to express themselves but whatever happened to getting a mis-spelled tattoo? I think that a stock seventh gen Celica, especially the GT-S model, is an under appreciated car. Do you share those thoughts? Should we all be snapping up clean and original low milage examples as investments? What do you think about these pointy Celicas, do they warrant a Brah! or a Blah?

Image: CarinImage


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