Another Sweet Sixteen Redline and Others Added To The Collection

Hot Wheels SilhouetteNew Hot WheelsNew Hot WheelsM2 1962 VW Double CabIn addition to the two sweet sixteen redlines that Lenora got me for Christmas, Shauna and Jordan (and Jaxon) also got me a mint Redline Hot Wheels Silhouette. I love the color because it matches my redline Custom Beetle. Again, it’s hard to believe that these cars are over 50 years old. I really don’t think they were ever played with. Shauna also got me some various other Hot Wheels to add to the collection along with a M2 1961 Double Cab VW Bus. This is certainly one of my favorites.

New Diecast For The Collection

More VW's For The CollectionMore VW's For The CollectionMore VW's For The CollectionLenora was lucky enough to pick up some more diecast for our collection on her way out of Walmart today. Love the detail on these M2’s. Yeah, they’re a lot more expensive than the regular Hot Wheels, Matchbox and Johnny Lightning, but the level of detail is so impressive. These are a very nice addition to the collection. The wagon actually came from Hobby Lobby.

New Hot Wheels Drag Bus Added To The Collection

Hot Wheels VW Drag BusI’ve been looking for this latest rendition of the Hot Wheels VW Drag Bus for a while now and Lenora was lucky enough to find one the other day while walking the aisles of Walmart. If you’re a beginner collector or not a collector at all, the Drag Bus might not mean anything to you. You have to go all the way back to 1996 to truly understand and appreciate the significance of the Hot Wheels Drag Bus. You can learn everything about it by clicking here! I’ll just give you a quick summary. When the Drag Bus was released as part of the 1996 First Editions series, it was an instant hit. I believe it was the heaviest Hot Wheels ever produced. It didn’t do well on the Hot Wheels track, but it was something different and everybody wanted one. So much so that people started hoarding them and selling them on sites such as Ebay for hundreds of dollars, yes, hundreds. They became impossible to find because most of them never hit the shelves. Even department store employees hoarded them to sell for a profit. I was patient and Lenora (she has much better luck than I do) finally found one at a Walmart and not long after, my niece found one at a Walmart as well. So I have two of the original Drag Buses. This spectacle went on for months and months. Hundreds of other companies recognized the popularity of the Drag Bus and commissioned them as giveaways/purchase with their company logos. Cereal companies, oil companies, automotive part companies, everybody jumped on the bandwagon. There were/are so many variations and paint schemes for the Drag Bus, I don’t think anybody knows exactly how many. Besides the two original First Editions Drag Buses that I have, I probably have 8 or 9 company promo Drag Buses as well. I only collect the ones that appeal to me. The Drag Bus remains as popular today as it did in 1996, prices now are more reasonable. You can even pick up a carded, 1996 First Editions Drag Bus for around 12 to 15 dollars. Earlier this year, Mattel re-released the Drag Bus as part of their 50th Anniversary Favorites series. There are some changes to this release, paint scheme is different, it has Real Riders (rubber tires) and now it sports windows around the roof line, making it a 21 window T1 Drag Bus. The same phenomenon that happened back in 1996 didn’t happen this time even though it sorta started that way with this release. People immediately started hoarding them up and selling them at inflated prices on auction sites. That only lasted a couple of months, then finally died down. Though they aren’t readily available on the toy aisle pegs, if you’re patient, you’ll find one. Lenora found ours last night.

Car Wash Day, Updated Pics

MabelMabelMabelMabelMabelMabelConsidering that today is November 18th, the weather was awesome! Especially since we’ve had nothing but rain for the past month and even a little snow. However, when it’s 60+ degrees outside, it’s time to wash the cars! Also took the opportunity to get Mabel out and drive her around town a few times. With the Thanksgiving break coming up in just a few days, I plan to get her out more. I never really put her away for winter, when it’s nice outside, she comes out to play, even if it’s cold. But if it’s snowy and the roads are salty, she stays in the garage.

Mabel Gets A New Battery

New Battery For MabelNew Battery For MabelNew Battery For MabelNew Battery For MabelNew Battery For MabelNew Battery For MabelNew Battery For MabelNew Battery For MabelI noticed a few months ago that if Mabel sat for a week or so without being started, the starter struggled a bit to turn the motor. I installed a hard start relay to see if this made any difference. The battery I was using was a Autocraft Silver 42-1 which is perfect for these cars, it has the protective cap over the positive terminal to keep from accidentally grounding out the battery if somebody is sitting in the back seat. Anyhow, I’d throw the charger on the battery for an hour or so and it’d be fine for a couple of weeks, then after she sat for a few days, I’d have the same issue. Voltage out of the battery without the car running was 10.8 volts, that’s low. Should be around 12.6. With the car running, I was getting right at 14 volts, so I knew the generator was working properly. That battery just wasn’t holding a charge like it should. I also tested for parasitic battery drain and everything checked out ok. The battery is almost 5 years old, time for a new one. This time, I decided to go with a Interstate MT-47. It got good reviews even though it cost a bit more compared to other batteries. It doesn’t have the protective cap over the positive terminal, but the case is built to prevent any accidental grounding. For added protection, you can always throw a piece of rubber, such as an old floor mat, over top of the battery as well. [Read more…]

New Die Cast and Pops

Die Cast and Pop CultureDie Cast and Pop CultureDie Cast and Pop CultureDie Cast and Pop CultureDie Cast and Pop CultureDie Cast and Pop CultureDie Cast and Pop CultureMy family knows all of my vices. Over the past few months, they’ve flooded me with some of my favorite pop culture goodies. As most of you know, we’ve collected die cast cars for many, many years. Mostly Hot Wheels and mostly VW die cast, but if we see anything else that we like, we’ll try to get it. A couple of years ago, I started collecting Funko Pops. Not all of them of course, but just the ones that I really like. Luckily my kids share a similar taste in pop culture. I’m very easy to shop for. 🙂

Installing A Hard Start Relay

Hard Start RelayHard Start RelayHard Start RelayHard Start RelayHard Start RelayHard Start RelayHard Start RelayHard Start RelayThere are numerous reasons why you may want to install a hard start relay on your vintage VW. A hard start relay basically directs the electrical current from the battery, through the relay and to the starter motor instead of routing it through the ignition switch. This eliminates a path of approximately 15′ of wiring and potentially bad connections. Once installed, your ignition key simply activates the relay. You can pick up a 4 post, 12v relay at most automotive stores, Ebay or Amazon for around 5 dollars. I already had some 12 gauge wiring and terminals, so I only have about 5 dollars and 30 minutes invested in to this project. You can buy ready made kits, but they can be pretty expensive, up to 35 dollars. Mabel wasn’t exhibiting any syntoms that would justify the install of the hard start relay, but not knowing what the future may hold, I thought I’d go ahead and install one. You don’t have to be a electrical genius to install the relay, but it does help to have the right tools. It doesn’t require any cutting or splicing of the original wiring. Wiring will vary from year to year, so depending on the age of your VW, your install may differ just a bit, but for the most part, it’ll be the same. If you look at the first pic, you’ll see that I’ve labeled what connector goes where on the relay. Start by disconnecting the battery. Locate the wire that goes from the ignition switch to the starter solenoid. Unless your VW has had previous wiring changes, more than likely, it’ll be a larger red wire with a quick disconnect. This wire will go to pin 87 on the relay. Make up a jumper that will go from pin 85 to the ignition switch (quick disconnect). Next, you need to make up a ground wire that will go from pin 86 on the relay to ground. I grounded mine where I mounted it to the floor pan support. Now you’ll need to make up a cable that’ll go from the positive post on the battery to pin 30 on the relay. You can also run this from the B+ post on the voltage regulator if you don’t want to run it to the battery. Lastly, you’ll need to mount the relay. You can mount it just about anywhere that will ensure a good ground. I chose the floor pan support. Don’t forget to connect your ground wire to the relay.

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