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JUNE 10 STAR OF THE WEEK: THIS GUY WHO TOOK A 52 CHEV OUT DURING A SEVERE WEATHER WARNING

june12-10aimgp3419-003JUNE 10 STAR OF THE WEEK: THIS GUY WHO TOOK A 52 CHEV OUT DURING A SEVERE WEATHER WARNING

Unless you live in Death Valley summer weather is far from an exact science so anyone who ventures out on the road may face a little uncertainty.

New cars even the odds with Mother Nature.

A touch of a button on the dash will give you a comprehensive burst of weather information ranging from numbers to actual radar maps.

You can look on a screen and see the nasty weather as it happens.

An old ride like this 52 Chev is far more primitive.

If it's stock, the best you'll do for a weather forecast is measuring bursts of static on the AM radio.

It's not an online satellite radar map but sustained and frequent bursts of static mean you and the old Chevy are going to be thumped by a storm so severe those vacuum wipers will fold like a bad poker hand during a downpour.

That's why this guy and his car represent the Star of the Week – he was driving this car to a show despite severe weather warnings and funnel clouds in the area. That takes serious nerve...John Wayne nerve.

That's large in MyStarCollectorCar world.


JUNE 9 STAR OF THE DAY-JUMPIN JACK FLASH IT'S A WILLYS GAS, GAS, GASSER

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The Gasser class was around at the inception of drag racing. They had some basic rules but the biggest factor was stock wheel base so a shorter wheel base and a high center of gravity was a big advantage.

The 1940-1 Willys was a form fit for a rock solid Gasser. They were cheap and practically built to code for Gasser engineering.

Any kid in the 1960s who found a Willys Gasser plastic model kit under the Christmas tree thought he'd struck gold in the annual "Santa likes me" contest. These monsters on 4 wheels were over the top cool to an 11 year old because they looked tough and backed it up on the track.

Willys Gassers weren't pretty – they were all work. Here's a great example of how they were from a show last summer...

Star of the Day cool for almost 60 years.



JUNE 8 STAR OF THE DAY: 1971 PLYMOUTH ROAD RUNNER-THE PLYMOUTH NIGHT STALKER

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The 1971 Plymouth Road Runner was an evolution for the cartoon inspired muscle car. The fuselage inspired body was an instant hit because it had better aerodynamics and it clearly said "we're into the 70s Me decade".

They were more civilized in many ways than their older cousin the original 68 Road Runner but they still packed a big punch. 1971 Road Runners still inspired respect on the street and they easily lived up to their predecessor's big, bad reputation.

This Star of the Day was night stalking at a show last year and it almost snuck in under the radar...until people realized it was a Road Runner.


JUNE 7 STAR OF THE DAY: PONCHO GOES HOLLYWOOD "HERE COME DA JUDGE"

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The 1969 Pontiac GTO Judge was born when Rowan and Martin's Laugh-In became one of the hottest shows on TV. Pontiac wanted an answer to the low-end Plymouth Road Runner but the Judge ended up as a high-end GTO option package.

Most people attribute the Judge to Flip Wilson on Laugh-In with his "here come da Judge" routine but in reality, a guy named Pigmeat Markham did it first – long before Flip and long before TV...on Vaudeville stages.

Pontiac didn't care who did it first but Laugh-In was so hot in 69 that linking a muscle car to the name made a lot of sense.

This Star of the Day was at a show this past weekend and one thing was clear from a block away-here comes a Judge.


JUNE 6 STAR OF THE DAY: AN EARLY 1950S STYLE DODGE "MINIVAN" WITH A 1950S STYLE COCA COLA SCHOOL ZONE SIGN

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Here's a great look back at the way things were in the early 50s. The Dodge panel is what passed for a minivan back then and the Coca Cola sign was what passed for a school safety sign circa 1954.

The Dodge truck was actually an old military vehicle so it was clearly a case of function over form. There's no flip-down TV in the back of this old van and air conditioning come in the form of roll down windows.

The blue police school zone sign was a brilliant piece of marketing during the peak of the baby boom era.

Coke had the public service/concerned business covered on the one side with the warning about the school zone while the other side was pure marketing in the form of a "Drink Coca Cola" ad.

That was 1950s Madison Avenue at its most brilliant.

There's no clear choice today for Star of the Day – call it a total package look back at a kinder, gentler time and place.

A place where a sign like this school zone warning wouldn't get tagged with gang graffiti and a truck like this Dodge was all you needed for real work.


JUNE 5 STAR OF THE DAY: 1967 RAMBLER REBEL SST CONVERTIBLE – WHEN WAS THE LAST TIME YOU SAW ONE?

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The 1967 Rambler Rebel marked a significant departure for American Motors. This was the point that AMC became more conventional.

The Rebel was a very contemporary looking car with a clean, functional, modern look for 67.

Some long-term Rambler fans hated them for that reason but in reality, AMC pumped out a great looking car with decent performance in 1967.

This Rebel SST convertible was at a show on the weekend. It was a bright light on a rainy day because it was so rare (1686 built vs 2050 GTX convertibles in 1967). That makes it extremely rare.

Star of the Day rare...Star of the Day cool.



JUNE 4 STAR OF THE DAY: CHEVY NOVA – AN EXAMPLE FROM THE LEGENDARY 3RD GEN 1968-74 ERA

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The Chevy Nova was built for one reason – affordable and compact transportation. They began life as the Chevy II because the Corvair was losing the battle to the Ford Falcon.

The Nova was the upper end name for the new Chevy and it wasn't long before car guys figured out the incredible power to weight ratio with a small block V-8 under the hood.

The 3rd Generation Nova was a little bigger but the big number SS 396 under the hood. Eventually the COPO Nova made street legends out of these tough, well engineered little Chevys.

This Nova was on the road this past weekend and it really defines why it was solid pick for today's Star of the Day.


JUNE 3 STAR OF THE DAY: CAMPING WITH STYLE – AN OLD MERCURY TRUCK ADDS A TOUCH OF CLASS

This old Merc truck was at a show yesterday and it really made a statement in the local campground.

Camping is a great experience on its own but if you can add a rare Canadian pickup to the mix you have an off the chart experience.

There were at least two $150,000+ motor homes in the same campground but this old Mercury truck stole the show.

You won't find a microwave, satellite TV or even running water in this classic but what you will find is a timeless piece of truck history.

That's what an mscc Star of the Day is all about...

Jerry Sutherland

For past Stars of the Day, please follow this link...

http://www.mystarcollectorcar.com/2-features/star-car-tunes/1533-star-of-the-day.html

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