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August 2019

SHOP TALK

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Visit RAGTOPS.COM today to see recent updates and new photos! 

In This Edition:

Through The Windscreen

New Hope Auto Show

August 10th -11th

The school construction is done, so the show is going back to their two-day format and we are returning to our usual spot! Stop by for a visit! On both Saturday, & Sunday, at the New Hope-Solebury High School the show opens to the public at 9AM, and closes at 4PM. Please plan to attend Bucks County’s premiere antique automobile show. Admission to the show is $10.00 per person. $5.00 for Seniors and children under 12 accompanied by an adult are free. Click here for more info

"Under the Stars" aka the "The British are Coming!" in Perkasie

Aug 17th

NEW THIS YEAR! British Car owners are invited to participate in the first annual "The British are Coming!" right here in Perkasie, PA. This will be part of the long-time, successful Under the Stars Car Show as Perkasie will be opening Walnut Street to exclusively feature British Cars! The street capacity is limited to about 35 cars, so we very much encourage pre-registration. Trophies will be sponsored by Ragtops & Roadsters and will be awarded in numerous categories. If you want to have a nice local evening out, click here to register online. 

SVRA Vintage Races & Grand Prix Festival

Sept 6 - 9th

TRIUMPHS at Watkins Glen! Since 1993, the Grand Prix Festival of Watkins Glen has celebrated our heritage of motor racing. Last year, Jaguar was the featured marque with an estimated 25,000 spectators in attendance. This year TRIUMPH will be the featured Marque and we plan to be there!  As in previous years, a tribute to the Grand Prix races are featured in a variety of events during this all day festival. Events include the Walk of Fame award ceremony, a historical lecture called The Legends Speak, a pre-race Tech Inspection at Smalley's Garage, as well as several rolling events and two car shows known as the Stone Bridge Driver Events. Stop by and visit our exhibit at the FLX on Thursday and on Franklin Street at the Grand Prix Festival.

 

America's British Reliability Run

September 20- 22nd

We are pleased to report that at this time we have about 30 teams registered out of 40! Only 10 spots left!  We are ahead this year and this one will sell out soon! On Sept 20th we will start at Peddlers Village in Lahaska, PA, cross the Delaware, run south along the river towards Millville, NJ, visit New Jersey Motorsports Park, take in some parade laps on Thunderbolt Raceway, then ride the Cape May Ferry to Lewes DE, dine at The Wheelhouse Restaurant, then tour through Delaware and Maryland state parks, visit another British car restoration shop, see more British cars, have a barbecue lunch, and eat some crab for dinner!  If you are thinking of running with us this year, SAVE THE DATE 9/20-9/22 and check out the details at www.britishreliability.org

British Car Calendar of Events

Reoccurring Events

2nd Tue   MG Club of Philadelphia Mtg., Blue Bell, PA
3rd Mon   Austin Healey Sport & Touring Club Mtg., North Wales, PA
3rd Tue   DVT Club GTR Mthly Mtg., North Wales, PA
3rd Sun   DVJ Breakfast Social, Spring House, PA
Every Sat   Katie's Cars and Coffee, Great Falls, VA

August Events

8/2 – 8/4   55th Annual Das Awkscht Fescht, Macungie, PA
8/3   15th Annual Pennypacker Mills British Car Day, Schwenksville, PA
8/10 – 8/11   2019 Mt Equinox Hillclimb, Manchester, VT
8/10   “Nurburgring  German Performance” Simeone Museum, Philadelphia, PA
8/10 – 8/11   New Hope Auto Show, New Hope, PA
8/16 – 8/18   Pebble Beach Concours, Pebble Beach, CA
8/17   Under the Stars "The British are Coming", Perkasie, PA
8/18   30th Annual “A Taste of Britain” Polo Match, Rothsville, PA
8/18   Cars and Cigars Skipack Village, Skippack, PA
8/23 – 8/26   LOG 39 Lotus Owners Gathering, Sturbridge , MA
8/25   DVR AACA Summer Picnic, Chalfont, PA
8/29 – 9/2   Historic Festival 35, Lime Rock Park, Lakeville, CT
8/31   54th Annual Duryea Day, Boyertown, PA

 

Shop News

Motorcars Delivered... Ready for Summer Driving!

by: Dave Hutchison

This very low mileage 1975 Triumph Spitfire was just delivered after some routine maintenance and the installation of new seat covers from Moss Motors that matched the old vinyl in the car very well. DVT Member Pat and his son Kevin Heron have teamed up again and are registered for the 2019 America's British Reliability Run. 
This beautiful 1990 Jaguar XJS  came to us from a longtime client of our sister shop Pollock Auto Restoration. The car came in for a full evaluation and it was determined that it needed a fair amount of work. We rebuilt the rear brakes and completed other deferred work. We also sent the wood console to British Autowood for refinishing. 
This 1974 Lotus Europa Special came through our shop a couple of years ago. It had been "restored" by another shop but they lacked the first hand knowledge of all the specifics skills regarding Lotus.  After sorting through the entire car, unfortunately our client was no longer able to drive it and this Special has now found a new home with this happy owner.  

In the Rearview

Rebels & Redcoats

by: Dave Hutchison 

With a thunderstorm forecast, nearly a 100 pre-registered cars showed up for the second annual Rebels & Redcoats on July 6th in Washington's Crossing State Park. We brought the 1937 Railton Fairmile for our exhibit to represent both American and British cars!
The Hudson-based Railton Fairmile is nearing the end of its multi-year collaborative restoration by both teams at Ragtops & Roadsters and Pollock Auto Restoration and is looking very sharp.  Based on a Hudson straight-eight from the Terraplane, this handsome coachwork by Coachcraft was the best in it's day and it represented days when the English and American relationships were good! The 1922 Sequeville Hoyau Sportster with dickey seat, owned by Alex Giacobetti of Philadelphia, is believed to be the only one here in the states and it went on to win "Best French Car".  Revolutionary war re-enactors were marching in full dress on a pretty hot day!
The American and French cars lined up on one side of the show field against the opposing British and German cars. Unlike the revolution, everyone got along fine and we enjoyed each others offerings.  I was pleased to see so many early American cars!  The Delaware Valley  Triumph club had the largest club presence and a relatively new club, the British Car Club of Bucks County was there flying their flag, also.  
After lunch the thunderstorms came in two waves and many people packed up and went home.  The award ceremony commenced when the rain let up and my favorite award for the "Largest Oil Spot" was awarded to Andrew Lubin of the Bucks County British Car Club with his 1968 MGB. Click here to find this relatively new British car club on Facebook.  Andrew was given a can of Stop Leak!  Here at Ragtops, we have never found a cure in a can. Good Luck, Andrew! 
First Place German was awarded to Stephen Neubaur for his very cool 1955 Messerschmitt KR200. First Place American went to Timothy Hagar, for a very nice 1949 Willys Overland and First Place British went to Steve Rush, with his beautiful 1964 Jaguar E-Type Coupe. 
Congratulations are in order for all of the winners. For a complete list of winners click here. It was great to see everyone and this is a very nice venue as there was a very eclectic group of some very interesting cars! I would definitely put this one on your 2020 car show calendar. Save the date..SUNDAY July 5, 2020! See you then! 

PA Live Steamers with the Delaware Valley Triumphs

by: Dave Hutchison

Some 15 Delaware Valley Triumph Club members, including Mike and Peggy Engard, owners of Ragtops & Roadsters with their TR8, attended our private invitation to the Pennsylvania Live Steamers last Sunday. Seven TRs had shaded parking and we enjoyed each others company having a picnic lunch together. The day became perfect for me when a little anthracite coal smoke wafted across our table as a scale, hand-built steam locomotive with freight cars was slowing to enter the "yard" area. The engineer called over to us and said "Want a ride!?"  I didn't hesitate, grabbed my grandson Reed's hand and carefully crossed several tracks (looking both ways) to board the train. All Aboard!  And we were off, slowly through the yard, then into a tunnel, across a cantilever bridge and trestles as we rode the rails at a good pace. 

The Pennsylvania Live Steamers own a five-acre property near the old Reading Railroad right-of-way along the Perkiomen Creek with over 7000 feet of multi-gauge tracks. This hobby, like all, is a commitment of time and resources. Most of the PLS members are are very skilled machinists, as many of the locomotives and coaches are scale "scratch-built" like the "Mogul" that we rode behind; a 2-6-0 wheel arrangement. This type of engine was used by many railroads as a light passenger / small freight engine from the late 1800s through WW II before the diesel electric.

I have been a steam railfan for 60 years, having ridden many of the Iron Horse Rambles; one right here on the Reading RR through Schwenksville and Spring Mountain. I have also had the pleasure of enjoying this venue for over 30 years as my father was a PLS Member and he and I brought my son Ryan here back in the 80s. Today, Ryan brought his niece, Shayla and Char and I brought our grandson Reed, who at 4 years old, was the age Ryan was when he first rode the miniature rails!
Steam engines are a lot of work as it takes a fair amount of time and expertise to fire them up and clean up time after they cool down, so many members have gas powered replicas for the ease of operation. Kind of like British car folks who own Miatas! Many thanks to fellow DVT Member Joyce DeLucia (who, with Bob, was enjoying their 35th anniversary!), for arranging the invitation to our club to attend the PLS private play-land! I will become an associate member and will return on Saturday August 31st for their FALL MEET where there will be many more steam engines running!  To find out more about PA Live Steamers visit their website and become an Associate Member!
We are here to help out with summer/fall projects. Maybe it's time to take care of that deferred maintenance, restoration, preservation, and upgrade needs that are on your car's "to do" list? Click here to send an e-mail to dave@ragtops.com or just call us 215-257-1202 to schedule an appointment. We are currently scheduling appointments in September and later in the fall, so it's not too late to plan for repair or restoration work so you can still drive furring the fall foliage season!
We have recently listed more of our client's British cars looking for new homes. Click on our For Sale page to see current listings. Click here to see more pictures of the very clean 'rotisserie' nut and bolt, full restoration of this well sorted 1966 MGB with LaCock de Normanville overdrive shown below. This car was photographed by Michael Furman and appears in his recent  "Rule Britannia" book. Yes, chrome bumper MGBs can bring up to 30K! The asking price was just reduced to $27,500
Happy Motoring!
Dave & the Staff at Ragtops & Roadsters.
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