The 2018 Sport and Specialty Drive Out – Cool cars, nice people, fun projects!

The 2018 Sport and Specialty Drive Out – Cool cars, nice people, fun projects!

Thanks to all who attended our first ever “Drive Out.” The impromptu car show was a great success and the weather couldn’t have been better. This will be an annual event I think. I need to thank the Sport and Specialty crew, Ryan, Bill, Max Lindsay, Glade, and Cameron, along with our great customers and friends for making today so much fun.

As always, make sure to keep checking our Facebook and Instagram pages for more pictures – so many people taking so many pictures!


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The 2017 Austin-Healey Conclave

A quick wrap up from my trip to the 2017 Austin-Healey Conclave - in short: another great event, organized this time by the Texas Austin Healey Clubs. A quick wrap up from my trip to the 2017 Austin-Healey Conclave - in short: another great event,...

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Carry Your Weight: How We Keep a Healey Balanced During Restoration

Carry Your Weight: How We Keep a Healey Balanced During Restoration

Sport and Specialty - Carry Your WeightThere are sand bags hiding in these two Healeys.

We’re not waiting for a flood or storing for the sandblaster, we’re making sure that everything is in balance. To get the lines and gaps right you really need to weight a car’s chassis when you do a total body restoration.

Healeys are especially prone to sag a bit with age, making it even more challenging to get everything just right. Every spring I get calls from folks who install the engine and interior pieces of their car after the body has been restored, painted, or simply put back together. To their surprise, they find their doors don’t close, the style lines don’t match, or the body gaps have changed considerably.

What happened was as those pieces to the car were put back on, the extra weight of the engine or suspension has made the body flex just a little. That’s why you’ll see cars in our shop with sand bags strategically placed in our customer’s cars during restoration. It’s one of those things that years of experience have made the difference in how we prepare our classic cars.

Another quick tip for you do-it-yourselfers: Fit your chrome and trim when you are doing your bodywork and finishing. This too will save hours trying to make trim fit on a now altered (even if just a little) and painted bodywork. Send out those pieces out for chrome after you know it all fits properly.

Want to know more about some of the little lessons we’ve learned? Give me a call, drop me a line, or better yet schedule a time to take a tour of the shop.


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The 2017 Austin-Healey Conclave

A quick wrap up from my trip to the 2017 Austin-Healey Conclave - in short: another great event, organized this time by the Texas Austin Healey Clubs. A quick wrap up from my trip to the 2017 Austin-Healey Conclave - in short: another great event,...

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It’s Insurance Review Season: Do you even know what the limits are on your policy?

It’s Insurance Review Season: Do you even know what the limits are on your policy?

Write this down on your car’s to-do list: Check your classic car insurance coverage.

Today!

Do you even know what the limits are on your policy? Do you know what the current value of your vehicle is? If your car gets hit, will you be able to fix it or will it be a total because the entire amount will be used up?

Did you know that, depending upon the state, your insurance company can take possession of your car and sell it for parts or scrap when the payout exceeds a percentage of the limit of your policy?

Over the past five years we have taken in more than a few cars that have been underinsured. In a few cases, they have also had poorly repaired or restored work that must be re-done to fix a current issue. This typically puts me in the uncomfortable position of informing an owner that their beloved vehicle cannot be fixed for what it’s insured.

We don’t have an underinsured rate. It costs the same to properly fix a car regardless of the policy limits. We also don’t have a magic relationship with the insurance carrier where we can “work things out.” No winking and nodding goes on in my world.

A few other things to remember:

  • The policy will not pay to repaint the whole car if only a portion is damaged. You may get a decent color match, but you may end up with a half lacquer and half urethane finished car.
  • Be certain your carrier has adjusters on hand who are acquainted with, and the know how to properly fix your marque. Most don’t, and this will mean hours of time for your chosen repair facility in preparing addendums and correspondence. Most replacement body parts don’t “just bolt on”.
  • Pre-existing conditions don’t only apply to health insurance. New parts cannot be welded or bolted to filler and fiberglass repairs. Many times, this isn’t apparent until the job is underway. The repair for this is the responsibility of the car’s owner.
  • A super original collector car’s value will be significantly diminished once a significant collision repair has been performed. That is real money.

This isn’t an indictment of the insurance industry, simply a reminder that it’s our responsibility as owners and collectors to make sure that we are managing our investments wisely. It may certainly be worth a look!!


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The 2017 Austin-Healey Conclave

A quick wrap up from my trip to the 2017 Austin-Healey Conclave - in short: another great event, organized this time by the Texas Austin Healey Clubs. A quick wrap up from my trip to the 2017 Austin-Healey Conclave - in short: another great event,...

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A Fast Five – Learning to How Balance My Passion With My Livelihood

A Fast Five – Learning to How Balance My Passion With My Livelihood

Hurray! In a few days I will celebrate five years as a small business owner. I often believe I have made it over the hump, but I know enough to never become complacent when moving forward. I hear a lot about “Living the Dream,” but there are some days I wish I had a boss to dump stuff on, weekends and vacation days, and was back on a “Direct Deposit” plan. But yeah, mostly, things are working out the way I had hoped.

While the automobile restoration business may not move at the speeds of the high tech industry, it certainly doesn’t remain static. Marque values fluctuate, the economy ebbs and flows, projects explode, regulations change, and costs and taxes never go down. These are all things I found I needed to pay attention to in order to stay current.

Without a doubt, I have been blessed with talented employees and grateful customers which have allowed us to deliver exceptional cars and grow our reputation as a place to bring work to if you want it done properly. It would be far easier to provide “good enough” work, even when you know it should be superior quality. By delivering best quality, I have found few things more satisfying than having people comment in superlatives when they see our work in person.

“Good enough” wouldn’t get us the same reactions, and won’t be enough to sustain the future reputation of Sport and Specialty which began twenty plus years ago. Without any snide comments from my friends who may playfully disagree, the good news is I’m still young and enthusiastic enough to do this for quite a while.

It’s been an interesting trip in making the move from hobbyist to professional. I am keenly aware of the slippery slope of losing your passion once your passion becomes your livelihood. I have found that an important part of staying passionate, is being passionate. You must also, work, race, and play with others who share your love of vintage sports and collector cars. Without the support of my circle of
long time car friends I might never have even tried this move. I have also been extremely fortunate to have developed new friendships with some of the nicest, most helpful, and sincerely genuine folks ever.

So, basically, I need my talented employees, valued customers, and wonderful friends and family to accept my profound thanks for your support and loyalty over these past five years. I’m looking forward to our new projects and next adventures! I can’t wait to see what the next five bring.

We’ll continue to grow, and I’ll continue to have fun…..All aboard!


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The 2017 Austin-Healey Conclave

A quick wrap up from my trip to the 2017 Austin-Healey Conclave - in short: another great event, organized this time by the Texas Austin Healey Clubs. A quick wrap up from my trip to the 2017 Austin-Healey Conclave - in short: another great event,...

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“Cars Yeah” Podcast Featuring Sport and Specialty

“Cars Yeah” Podcast Featuring Sport and Specialty

I was honored to be interviewed by Cars Yeah’s Mark Greene, “an incurable automotive enthusiast interviewing successful automotive entrepreneurs who live a lifestyle around their passion for automobiles” for his latest podcast.

You can find the full podcast on his Cars Yeah website where he asked me questions from how and why I bought Sport and Specialty, to what are my favorite cars, and finished with, “If you were a car, what would you be?” I’m pretty sure you won’t guess my answer on that one.

Full disclosure: Mark gave me some of the questions ahead of time so it made for a smooth discussion about classic cars, classic car business, and how I spend my time around all of these incredible machines. While you’re there check out some of his other podcasts, he’s had some really interesting interviews.


Read More of My Blog Posts


The 2017 Austin-Healey Conclave

A quick wrap up from my trip to the 2017 Austin-Healey Conclave - in short: another great event, organized this time by the Texas Austin Healey Clubs. A quick wrap up from my trip to the 2017 Austin-Healey Conclave - in short: another great event,...

read more