Monday, March 13, 2006

Chrome Plating Fiberglass

by Jay Berentis

Fiberglass is quickly become the substrate of choice for custom car and car racing enthusiasts. Fiberglass has many advantages over using metal. Most notably are the weight issue and the ease of working with fiberglass. Fiberglass molds can be made for almost any automotive panel to lighten or customize. Older muscle cars or vintage vehicle that are no longer in production and racecars are the main market area that we see right now. The only problem with fiberglass is that you are limiting the types of finishes that can be placed over the substrate.
For most of the vehicle this is not a problem most automotive finishes are compatible with fiberglass. The problem comes with the accessories to the vehicle mainly the bumpers. Chromed metal bumpers add a large amount of weight seventy-five to one hundred and fifty pounds each. This added weight could cause some problems with cars that are primarily fiberglass. The fiberglass body may not support the added weight and cause stress cracks. If the vehicle is for racing the added weight can slow a vehicles track time.
Custom Coating Specialties has a new process XXX Chrome Plating that allows the coating of fiberglass bumpers and most any other substrate. It is called chemical metalizing. The process involves laying down a foundation coat on a part to achieve a truly smooth surface. Then a thin coating of metal is applied using a chemical reaction instead of the normal electrical process. The final step is to place an armor coating over the top. The finished process looks identical to chrome plating. Some of the advantages to this process are that any surface can be chromed and any imperfections in the piece can be fixed using standard automotive repair procedures. There is also an environmental benefit to using this process.
Chrome plating uses several extremely hazardous chemicals and is heavily regulated. Chemical metalizing produces a minimal amount of waste and is more environmental friendly. You can check out more on this process at

About the Author
Jay has been involved in the automotive industry for over fourteen years. Jay graduated from college with an associate's degree in automotive collision repair and refinishing. Jay worked in several high-end body shops before taking the position of manager at a GM dealership. Four years ago he started a custom coating shop specializing in coating for automotive and industrial applications(chrome, powder coat, ceramics, and liquid coatings)

Tuesday, March 07, 2006

Why Are Custom Cars Popular?

by: Matt Garrett

The flames from the silencer of the car burst out, as if the car would fly. The bright red spoiler adds to the glamour of the car. The blue light which throws itself beneath the car entices you to the top and the paint and stickers make you want that car. You probably would have imagined one of the best custom cars, by the time you read these lines. What do you think, why custom cars like these are so popular and people just can't stop making their cars like one of them? Why every time a customized car passes by you, your heart skips a beat? Think about it.

Well, the reason behind the popularity of custom cars can be many. But let us discuss some of the major reasons. One of the prominent and arguably the predominant reason behind custom cars is street car racing. The second reason behind the popularity of custom street cars is the craze and the love of people for their cars. They want to see their car and its performance in a completely new way and opt for customization according to their needs.

Let us discuss the street car racing concept which has led to the popularity of custom street cars. Car lovers love to flaunt their cars in speed and style. Street car racing is popular in many countries. They happen both legally and illegally and the business of illegal street car racing is much higher than the legal racing.

People buy normal cars from the market and then customize them according to the racing requirements. They concentrate on modifying engine, body and style. Engine customization is their priority. The famous nitro boosts are added to the engine to give drivers an added edge over the other racers when it comes to super fast acceleration at any point of time. Among other modification are the rpm boost, better exhaust, flame silencers, ignition system, and fuel intake system. When it comes to style, neon lightning, stickers , alloys, window graphics, spoilers and other parts give car a completely new look.

With enhanced acceleration, top speed and nitrous oxide support, a car is ready to zoom ahead in a race. These customizations make any car a speeding beauty. People get both style and power which they always wanted in their cars. Street racing would continue to be the driving force behind popularity of custom cars.

Another reason behind popularity of custom cars can be sheer looks and style. They want their car to look the best when they take it on to streets. Car lovers tend to customize their cars and turn them into fabulous machines. People paint their cars with vibrant colors; they change their bumpers and add many more features to them. They put on neon blue bulbs, stickers and stylish wiser and spoiler to add to the charisma of the car. The alloys and rim covers give cars an all together different look. Light accessories, license plate accessories, high volume deck, tinted windows panes make a car look awesome in its own kind.

So if you are bored with the looks and performance of your car, customize it applying your own creativity or give it to a customization company.

About the Author
Matt Garrett,

Muscle Cars & Cloning

by: David C. Atkin

With the quality of the workmanship on some of the muscle car clones, it's tough to know if your getting ripped off or taken advantage of, but you can still be smart about it, by learning about the car that you want to buy, getting ripped off will make you hateful and sour about the whole car industry, and it's not all of the industry that's trying to rip you off, just a small portion of the very weak ones.

Now if your looking at buying a classic cars you should learn all you can about the model that your buying, and learn about the person who's selling it, check out the car and be sure it's what it has been represented to you as being, get some references on the guy, or the company selling the car, first and foremost is that you know that the seller or his company is reputable.

You can do this by going to places like on the net, or the Better Business Bureau located at on the net, or you could use a private investigator to find info about the seller and his business, your looking for info, like his criminal record, and from the bbb look for things like, has anybody got a complaint against his business at this time, and what are the complaints, a complaint can be frivolous and have no merit, look for the serious stuff.

Now as to the car it's self, this can be very tricky, you need to look at the vin number, and make sure that it claims that the car is what the person sell it said it was, on GM cars you also need to look at the rpo number, this number will tell you if the engine and transmission are the correct one for the car your buying, or if things have been changed, the rpo code must match what the vin plate says, you can also look at things like rear end tags and transmission tags. Use this desoder for GM & Mopar .

On mopar products you need to look at this like the trim tag, usually located on the left inner fenderwell, you also need to look at the vin plate, this will tell you things like the make or manufacture of the car, the body style, the price class whitch is what the car was built for, what engine should be in the car, what assembly plant it was built at, look here for a mopar vin decoder you'll want to match the vin up to the codes on the engine and transmission

For more info on these sujects check out our muscle car community, loated at Muscle car community .

About the Author
David C. Atkin owner of Red Line Restoration, I've been in the automotive business for about 20 years, and I love the old cars, and want to see them stay on the road.

Muscle Car Restoration 101

by: Jason Tarasi

Restoring muscle cars is a hobby for some and a profession for others. There's just something about the classic high-performance cars that collectors, racers and general car enthusiasts find fascinating. If you are a hobbyist who is interested in restoring a muscle car, you will probably benefit from a few restoration tips. The restoration of muscle cars begins with shopping for a muscle car that can be restored. Prior to buying a car for the purpose of restoring it you need to make sure that the parts needed for the restoration are available and you can get your hands on them, and that you can afford to complete the project once you start it.

Before going shopping for a muscle car to restore, decide what your purpose is for restoring a car. Do you just want a great muscle car to drive? Will you be racing? Are you restoring the car so you can participate and compete in classic car shows? Do you intend to sell the totally restored muscle car for a profit?

Once you've determined the purpose behind your muscle car restoration you'll have a better idea about what type of muscle car you want to get. Before you go shopping, read up on different muscle cars and learn all about their performance, their value and so forth to make sure that the car you choose is appropriate for you intentions. To make sure that you don't get ripped off in a muscle car transaction, find out what the muscle cars you are looking for are worth "as is" and what they are worth once they are restored. Having this information at your fingertips will help you to determine whether or not you are really getting a "great deal" when you begin to negotiate to buy a muscle car.

Before you buy one, make sure that the parts needed to restore your muscle car are available and affordable. Set your budget and your timeline for restoring the car so you know how much you can afford to spend for the muscle car itself and for the parts and other expenses that will be incurred in the process of the restoration. Following these simple suggestions at the beginning of your muscle car restoration project will prevent you from starting a project you can't finish and will ensure that your muscle car restoration project is enjoyable and that you meet your goals for muscle car restoration, whatever those goals may be.

About the Author
Jason Tarasi is a muscle car enthusiast who runs the Muscle Car Monster Website, where members can buy and sell muscle cars for free through the site's online classifieds. Muscle Car Ads

Shelby Mustangs: Everlasting Allure

by: David Anthony

Shelby Mustangs are legendary are they are known amongst true fans as classics that can never be duplicated. They were the first "muscle cars," the first street racing cars that got young men's blood boiling everywhere. They were the beginning of the sports car and unfortunately, only 14,559 of them were made in the six year span that Carroll Shelby modified Ford Mustangs.

Shelby's dream was to give the Mustang a new look, a face lift in a way. And once he got a hold of it, it was never the same. One of the major changes it went through was the engine. Shelby gave it a huge engine, making the new and improved Mustang one of the fastest and potentially, most dangerous on the road.

The first Shelby Mustang, the GT350, appeared in 1965 and was painted white with the classic parallel blue stripes. It was essentially a race car with few comfort amenities. It wasn't until the 1967 model that this car actually received a back seat! It was that year, in fact, that Shelby decided to dress up his creations and tone down the racing element a bit. The result was the GT500, which was a perfect blend of mean racing machine and stylish street vehicle. The GT500KR (King of the Road) appeared in 1968 and quickly became a favorite amongst fans. Many enthusiasts today view the KR as the most powerful Mustang ever produced.

Today, many Shelby Mustangs have survived, but they need extensive restoration to ever look like they did in their glory days. The rare "barn" finds are few and far between. But, for those that have somehow stumbled upon a Shelby Mustang stored pristinely for some thirty plus years in a rural barn somewhere, the find is unbelievably sweet.

Purchasing a Shelby Mustang today takes a lot of research before you should allow any cash to change hands. Shelby buffs know how to make a reproduction look exactly like an original and if you don't do your homework, you just might get duped.

Knowing what parts a Shelby Mustang uses is essential. Mechanics that know these cars would never put the wrong parts in them. If you know your stuff, you would also know that a Shelby Mustang equipped with the wrong parts is a signal that you may not be purchasing the real thing. Keep in mind that this is not always a sign of a fake, but it's a definite red flag. Some people truly just do not know how to care for a Shelby and even if it is authentic, you're going to spend a lot of time and a lot of money restoring it to its original glory.

Checking the VIN number is the best way to know if you're purchasing an authentic Shelby Mustang. The person you're buying the automobile from should have the original paperwork too- some even have the signature of Carroll Shelby on the paperwork.

Purchasing a Shelby Mustang in mint condition isn't cheap. In fact, it will set you back a few hundred thousand dollars. In the 1960's, these cars were going for $4,000-6, could barely purchase a good engine for that today!

Owning a Shelby Mustang in the 1960's was a status symbol and in many ways, it still is. Shelby Mustangs symbolized the beginning of an era and the few that own one today are considered to be very lucky.

About the Author
David Anthony is, among other things, a web developer and Ford Mustang enthusiast. Visit his site to see the latest clutterless Ford Mustang listings on eBay Motors(tm).

The Rise And Fall Of The Muscle Car Era

by: Jason Tarasi

Power, speed and performance - those are the three major traits of a muscle car. When first produced, muscle cars were just pretty darn amazing because they combined the efficiency of a lightweight, mid-sized body with the performance of a high-power V8 engine and special design features that further increased the cars' acceleration capabilities. Because muscle cars topped all other vehicles in terms of power, speed and performance, they were ideal for racing.

Muscle cars were produced from the mid-1960s into the early 1970s, but the production of such beasts fell drastically due to a number of factors. First was the controversy over whether it was wise and responsible to make such powerful vehicles available to the general public, primarily due to road racing. Because muscle cars were often used irresponsibly, liability relating to them was pretty high which forced insurance companies to increase rates for insuring muscle cars. Emission control requirements intended to curb pollution also played into the picture making it near impossible for automakers to produce muscle cars that met the standards they had to adhere to.

Needless to say, the muscle car industry changed quickly due to these influences. Demand decreased because many "would-be" buyers of muscle cars couldn't fathom paying the enormous insurance rates for a high-power vehicle and automakers had to meet the challenges presented by pollution control standards.

Since muscle cars were produced for a limited number of years, they are valuable items for collectors and are still highly desirable to those who enjoy racing or desire a quick, powerful, mid-sized car. Since the decline in the production of muscle cars, some automakers have attempted to bring the muscle car era back to life by producing powerful vehicles that resemble the legendary muscle cars, but in my opinion, they don't hold a candle to classic muscle cars like the GTO, the Road Runner or the Chevelle SS.

It will be interesting to see how the history of muscle cars plays out. Will present day automakers renew production of true muscle cars that are fast and powerful? Will there be enough demand to make muscle car production worth it to them? Or, will muscle cars continue to be limited to those classic models that were produced in the 60s and 70s?

Classic muscle cars are pretty amazing pieces of machinery. One that is restored and in cherry condition is really worth a lot of money. As time goes on, there are fewer muscle cars available which makes them even more valuable to classic car collectors and muscle car enthusiasts.

About the Author
Jason Tarasi is a muscle car enthusiast who runs the Muscle Car Monster Website, where members can buy and sell muscle cars for free through the site's online classifieds. Muscle Car Ads

How To Build Your Own Replica Sports Car

by: Gregg Hall

Many sports car fans have gone into production! That's right, they have built their own sports cars--often to resemble some of the most rare and valuable sports cars in history. These replicar owners are kit car builders who go out of their way to make high-quality replicas of the real thing.

Among the most popular home-built replica cars are Cobras. The finished products often look indistinguishable from their original counterparts.

Building your own replicar can have a lot of appeal. It may be a way to obtain the dream car one otherwise never afford. It may also be a family project or the extension of mechanical interests. After all, the process must certainly appear exciting to any would-be mechanic who loves to tinker with a car. Replicars allow one to actually build your sports car from the ground up using kit body and other parts, usually along with a commonly available mainstream automotive base.
Those who build their own sports cars seem to develop a greater appreciation for the vehicle and a strong understanding of both its limitations and strengths. Replicars really elevate the sports car hobby to a different level--every owner becomes a manufacturer with a more vested interest in the success and quality of each vehicle.

There is an active community of replicar builders and fans. This allows tremendous networking opportunities and a great information resource for what can most definitely become a complicated hobby. Members share information about building kit cars and often have get-togethers, swap meets and rallies where they can find interesting parts and grab new ideas for modifying their homemade cars.

Replicar drivers undoubtedly turn some heads in their "classic" cars, but have a great story to tell those interested, too. It's a different way of acquiring a sports car, but one that replicar enthusiasts probably wouldn't trade for anything.

One can find a sports car they love, purchase it, drive it home and enjoy it for years. There is nothing wrong in that traditional model. There is an alternative, however, for those who want to be more actively involved in the construction of their car than those who simply choose a paint color and option practice. Kit car and replicar enthusiasts truly wring the most out of their sports car hobby by playing the roles of both end-user and manufacturer.

About the Author
Gregg Hall is a business consultant and author for many online and offline businesses and lives in Navarre Florida with his 16 year old son. Get patented car care products from

Thursday, March 02, 2006

Lift Kits - The Raised Truck Craze Gone Wild

There was a day when trucks were a working man’s vehicle and scratches were expected. Shells protected valuables and tonneau covers protected tools. Those days are over and truck enthusiasts are souping up their rides more than ever before. With the addition of popular movies featuring fancy cars and popular television shows that glorify plasma screens and ground shaking stereo systems, the custom truck rage is here to stay.

As a sign of manhood or personal taste, many truck owners decide to lift their rides for a performance altered appearance. Lift kits can actually be found online and can be installed on your truck in a do-it-yourself fashion. Some lift systems can be somewhat difficult to install, but after all, challenges are what get us men going and when we are determined, who knows what will happen.

The following bullet points are the benefits to installing a new suspension system with lift kit on your truck:



Increase in ground clearance

Looks that could make a grown man cry!

The sky’s the limit when you go high-profile with your truck or SUV! Lift Kits push ground clearance and aggressive looks to new heights, letting you conquer on or off-road obstacles with confidence. Lift Kit Manufacturers make custom parts that will fit your specific truck to a “T” to give you the look that you’ve been wanting. My lift kit was recently tested at an off road rally down near Cabo San Lucas, Mexico, and let me tell you - I didn’t get stuck in the dirt. Ground clearance was needed on the off road trails that we were on and the drool on my buddies faces proved that the style could easily make a grown man cry.

Andrew Bernhardt is a proud Ford F150 owner and an auto enthusiast. He is also a writer for AutoAnything, an online truck accessories supplier of lift kits, suspension systems and more for every vehicle and every lifestyle.
Article Source:

Lotus Elise - A Supreme Sportscar

Author: William Berg

Lotus Elise is a good looking and high performance sports car developed by the Lotus Company. When the first Lotus Elise was released, it received a lot of attention for its remarkably low weight and striking design. The first Lotus Elise hit the marked in September 1995. Today, there are two main types Lotus Elise available for the car enthusiast: Lotus Elise Series 1 cars and Lotus Elise series 2 cars.

The creator of the first Lotus Elise was named Max David and worked from London. The founder of the Lotus Company, Colin Chapman, had always dreamed about a car that combined extremely light weight with superb performance, and Max David took these dreams to heart. The remarkably low weight of the Lotus Elise is what makes fantastic performance possible even with a modest engine. The shape of the Lotus Elise has been created with dynamics and driving purity in focus.

The first Lotus Elise weighed no more than 1500 lb (680 kg). Driving this car is amazing, due to its remarkable ability to accelerate, brake and corner. The weight of the first Lotus Elise can be compared to the Porsche Boxter, which is considered a low-weight sports car and still weigh almost as much as two Lotus Elise cars - 2756 lb (1250 kg). This means that while the 1997 Porsche Boxter requires and engine output of 201 bhp (149 kW), the Lotus Elise works brilliant with only 120 bhp (89 kW).

As mentioned above, the first Lotus Elise was released in September 1995. The year after the Lotus Company released an even lighter Lotus Elise that weighed an astonishingly low 1488 lb (675 kg). This car was followed by the Lotus Elise 111S three years later. The Lotus Elise 111S is faster than the preceding Lotus Elise cars and is fitted with a Variable Valve Control (VVC) engine. This engine has been developed from the Rover K series and equipped with Variable valve timing (VVT). You will also find more comfortable seats in the Lotus Elise 111S, since some customers found the first two Elise versions uncomfortable. The new seats are filled with more padding.

The next step for the Lotus Elise developers was the roofless Lotus Elise 340R. This cabriolet version of the Elise car was released in a limited edition in 2000 and was equipped with a 177 bhp (131 kW) engine. The name 340R was derived from the first prototype; it had a 340 bhp/ton power to weight ratio. The prototype had a 170 bhp engine, and weighed no more than 500 kg. In accordance with this, the limited edition consisted of exactly 340 cars. Later in the year 2000, the Lotus Company released the Exige. The Exige was similar to the Lotus Elise
340R, but had a hardtop. The engine was exactly the same; 177 bhp (131 kW).

The next step for the Lotus Company was to embark on the construction of the Series 2 Lotus Elise car. The first of the Series 2 Lotus Elise cars was actually announced the same year as the Lotus Elise 340R and the Exige was released. The car from the Series 2 was designed directly on the computer, which was a totally new way of working for the Lotus Company.

About the author:
Read more about Lotus Elise and the new 2006 Lotus Elise

Wednesday, March 01, 2006

Kit Cars

Author: William Berg

Kit Cars are cars that can be purchased in kit form and assembled at home. It is common for Kit Car enthusiasts to obtain their material from several "donor cars". There are a lot of Kit Car enthusiasts out there and people enter the Kit Car hobby for different reasons. Working with your hands and assembling something from the beginning can be extremely relaxing and riding in a car that you have built yourself is an indescribable experience. Kit Cars are however not for everyone, and if you know that you become frustrated by having to change your wind shield wipers a Kit Car might not be a wise idea.

Assembling a Kit Car can be a way of getting a cheaper car, but you should keep in mind that you will need a place to work in as well as the necessary tools. A lot of Kit Cars are assembled not primarily because they are cheaper than ordinary cars, but because a Kit Car can be made to suit your own particular needs and fill niches where it is hard to find ordinary cars. One of the most well known Kit Cars is for instance the Dune Buggy. The Dune Buggy is also known as Beach Buggy and Sand Rail. This Kit Car is not intended for high ways; it is a recreational vehicle that can be used on beaches and sand dunes where ordinary cars experience problems. The Dune Buggy is small and low-weight and has much larger wheels and tires than a normal car. The engine is mounted on an open chassis that is perfect for hot summer days at the beach. The Dune Buggy is usually constructed from older Volkswagen Beetles.

Kit Cars are also popular due to the possibility to create a car that resembles historic or contemporary cars. One of the most frequently replicated cars is the AC Cobra. The original AC
Cobras was powerful and stylish Anglo-American sports car that was creating during the 1960s. In 1968, the last Roadster platform was produced which put an end to the AC Cobra since the
AC Cobra was built on this platform. The public had however taken a liking to the potent and beautiful AC Cobra and Kit Car enthusiast started to build their own AC Cobras. Today, there
exist more Kit Car AC Cobra cars than original AC Cobra cars. Some of these Kit Cars are exact replicas while others are only inspired by the original AC Cobra. Some replicas can even be said to be improved versions of the original AC Cobra, since the Kit Car builders can utilise the inventions and automobile engineering advances.

About the author:
The Kit car enables you to have the car of your dreams, You can for exampel use a
Hummerkit to build your own hummer to cruise around the city and country in. You can also take your kit Hummer and modify it to create your own custom Hummer.