My cars

    Since my first car in high school I’ve gone through a few that were special to me and others that just served a function. In my youth I spent a lot of time tinkering and fixing up my vehicles but by the 90’s I just started buying brand new vehicles. Below is a list of the first up to my current vehicles.

    My first car was a 4 door 1969 Dodge Dart. It was my mothers but she bought another Dodge and gave this to me for graduation (I already drove it a lot). This seems to be the only photo I can find of it, right after I got it. I sold it a few years later. Gotta love the cool duds I was wearing. I did later paint it and put chrome Craiger Mags on it. It was cool to me so that’s all that matters. Somewhere there is a picture so I’ll keep looking.

    I was working at a car dealership and snagged a 1970 Ford Torino Cobra (photo not mine, but very similar) at a good price a few years later (sold the Dart to a co-worker.) It was fast and expensive. Then a girl hit me during an ice storm and never paid for the damages. Sold it a few years later for a lot less than I had in it.

    Just befoe I sold the Torino I purchased this 1975 Datsun pickup (I was still working at the dealership). I fixed it up with custom paintjob and camper shell a friend gave me. Had two little doors on back and it became quite the party vehicle with a great sound system. There were a few times I had the back loaded with friends going to and from parties. I’m still looking for better photos of it.

    Before I sold the Datson, I purchased this 1973 Monte Carlo, (still worked at the dealership). When I moved back home to go to college I sold the Datson and fixed the Monte up with fresh paint job (1st, 3rd, & 4th photos 1982). During this time I started working installing car stereo systems and tricked the Monte out with a very loud Alpine system . A few years later I did a complete teardown and fixed the rust and repainted again (2nd photo 1988). This car is partialy responsible for my poor hearing now.

    After I got the Monte I found I missed the utility of a pickup so I purchased a 1972 Chevy wrecked rusty pickup just for running around and to keep the miles off the Monte. It did the job and I sold it a few years later for the same $500 I paid for it.

    In 1987 we had a big winter storm and the old Chevy rust bucket was no match for the road (even loaded with snow in back and snow tires). Rear wheel drive Monte couldn’t even back out the driveway at my house on Pollack. I vowed to never be without a 4×4 after that.

    So next up I purchases this 1970 Ford Bronco from a friend at work (after selling the Chevy rust bucket to another friend). This truck was setup for mud drags with a 8 inch lift kit and size 38 gumbo mudder tires. It had some issues, doors almost fell off from so much rust, gas gauge didn’t work, minor electrical issues, but overall was a tank that would go anywhere I wanted to. Great for fishing in the pits. But finally decided I still wanted a pickup so sold for a little more than I paid for it.

    After the Bronco comes the “Heavy Chevy”, and 1975 heavy half ton pickup. It was beat up so I did a major body overhaul the first winter after I purchased it (1987 I think). This is it after the overhaul with the custom paint job by my friend Greg. He later would paint the Monte on the 2nd overhaul. You can see this truck in the background on the 2nd of the Monte photos above.

    Next up comes the move to the Indianapolis area. I wanted a more reliable vehicle and sold both the Monte Carlo and the Heavy Chevy and purchased a 1984 Oldsmoblie Cutlass Supreme as I was doing a lot of driving back and fourth between Indy and Evansville. (photo is not my car but very similar). In the end the car turned out to be a lemon and I quickly traded it in on another pickup. We had a need for a truck in my brothers business so that was the other factor.

    Next up was a 1988 Chevy Silverado pickup. I also purchases a matching camper shell as I often was hauling computer equipment. It was a nice ride and I kept it for several years. Then I got married and my first wife and I both worked at the same place at the time so I didn’t drive it much for a couple of years. But then I got a job with a long commute and decided I needed something more reliable (started having odd issues) and better gas milage so traded it on my first brand new vehicle.

    I went pretty basic with a small manual 5 speed 92 Totota pickup (before they called them Tacomas) but I did get 4×4 as I had missed that at times since selling the Heavy Chevy. It was a great liitle truck and fun to drive but the manual could be a pain in traffic so that with eventually figuring out the cab was just too small I traded it in on my next new vehicle.

    Next up was my 95 4×4 4 Runner, which was basically just like my 92 pickup but a full SUV instead of the truck bed, and it was automatic. It also was loaded with power everythng and a sun roof. I drove that truck a lot and was one of the most reliable vechicles I’ve ever owned. Over time I purchased 2 more vehicles and it sat for a few years in the barn (last photo). I finally sold it in spring 2020 just to make room in my barn. It still started and ran pretty good for sitting a long time.

    In 2001 I purchased this brand new 2001 Honda Accord Coupe as communting vechicle. It’s a great car that I still own and drive to this day. Again very reliable and while its an automatic, it’s still fun to drive and these days I mostly use it to drive errands.

    As the 4 Runner was showing it’s age (mostly cosmetic), and I found I needed a pickup again, I purchased this brand new 2016 Toyota Tundra TRD 4×4 which is fully loaded with leather heated seats among other goodies. This is my main vehicle and based on the 25 years I got out of the 4Runner, probably the last vehicle I ever purchase. It’s been a long way starting with that ’69 Dodge Dart.