What movies or TV shows influenced your gearheadedness?

mitchntx

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Jan 15, 2012
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My oldest daughter and I were talking this evening and comparing what movies and TV shows influenced us as kids ... or at least the most memorable.

I was born in '58, so shows in the late 60s and 70s are mostly what I recall.

Then Came Bronson ... I was glued to the TV when it came on ... I think it was Wednesday @ 9pm IIRC ... Long time ago.

Vanishing Point ... it was R rated and my mom took me to see it. She hated it, but I loved it.

Dirty Mary, Crazy Larry ... was there ever a Peter Fonda movie where he didn't die at the end?

Wide World of Sports and Evel Knievel ... the movie was OK.


Those are the ones high on my list for that era. I didn't see On Any Sunday till I was in my 40s, IIRC.

It'll be fun to see what warped your sense of being and the era.
 

Axxe55

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Quite a few of the Elvis movies.

The Muensters.

The Monkeys.

Vanishing Point.

Smokey and the Bandit.

Hooper.

Evel Kneivel.

Bullitt.

LeMans.

and so many more!
 

baboon

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May 6, 2008
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Watching my older brother piss away money with his gearheaded habit fixed me of wanting to be a gearhead. Most importantly was when he wrapped the old mans first brand new car around a bridge racing. The old man told me right after hearing of it that I would never drive any of his vehicles because of my brother!
 

Axxe55

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Dec 15, 2019
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Watching my older brother piss away money with his gearheaded habit fixed me of wanting to be a gearhead. Most importantly was when he wrapped the old mans first brand new car around a bridge racing. The old man told me right after hearing of it that I would never drive any of his vehicles because of my brother!

Back in high school, my father had a really hopped up 1960 Thunderbird that we took to town on Friday and Saturday nights.

Loaded with a fully hopped up 428 Cobra Jet engine and a C6 automatic. I don't think Dad knows to this day how many races that Thunderbird won on Friday and Saturday nights!
 

baboon

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May 6, 2008
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In a dumpy house on an expensive lot
One of my buddies parents owned a big garage & towing company. He was a gearhead from hell. I was with him when he wrecked his Porshe & his Bullet Mustang. Walked away from both. He also blew up a motor in another Mustang passing out warming it up after the bars close. Fell asleep with his foot on the gas. So drunk nobody could wake him up beating on the widows. His gearheadedness moved into bikes.
 

Axxe55

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Dec 15, 2019
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One of my buddies parents owned a big garage & towing company. He was a gearhead from hell. I was with him when he wrecked his Porshe & his Bullet Mustang. Walked away from both. He also blew up a motor in another Mustang passing out warming it up after the bars close. Fell asleep with his foot on the gas. So drunk nobody could wake him up beating on the widows. His gearheadedness moved into bikes.
I did go through the hopping up bikes as well. Had quite a few guys I hung around that were into them as well. I just didn't have the nerve like they did to go as fast on two wheels as I did on four!

Had one bike, a 1978 Kawasaki KZ1000 that was scary fast. The speedometer went to 160 mph. I pegged it and some once. Once! I sold it not too long after that.

I don't own or mess with fast bikes, dirt bikes, or ATV's anymore, because I have a stupid gene that doesn't know when to back off!
 

benenglish

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Watching my older brother piss away money with his gearheaded habit fixed me of wanting to be a gearhead.
It's odd but true that single experiences can have far-reaching influence. I was sort of into cars as a kid. I helped my dad do all the work on our cars.

To encourage me, Dad and his brother found a fixer-upper car to gift to me when I turned 16. It was a Rambler sedan (a Classic 660?) and I got used to doing the maintenance and trying to improve some minor things. Later in life, when I had money, I was certain I'd have some kind of car I built myself, a hot rod or kit car. I read and memorized every word printed in Car and Driver and Hot Rod.

The summer after I graduated high school, as I was about to drive to Houston to go to college, the car overheated. That happened occasionally and it was no big deal. I'd just put fresh water in the radiator and everything was fine. This time was different. Trying to get ahead on maintenance and not have to do car repairs while I should be going to classes, I had been fixing up the vehicle. One of the things I did was drain the water and replaced it with proper coolant.

This time, when I did what I always do, remove the radiator cap, the coolant exploded out of the opening. I was leaning right over it. I lost all the skin on my chest and much of my face. At the hospital, I remember watching a sort of green foam just grow out of my chest as we waiting for the doctor. I went into shock and, well, there's a lot more to that story but in the interest of brevity, I'll stop there.

Bottom line? Since that time, I've never felt any joy from fixing cars. I've done it. I've replaced a couple of water pumps in the driveway and changed oil and done plenty of small tasks but I don't like it and I don't get any real sense of accomplishment from it. Further, while I have always appreciated cool cars and bikes, no matter how you define "cool", I feel no serious desire to own one.

tl;dr - Hot Rod magazine was the major media influence on my gearheadedness. That influence was wiped away in a heartbeat.
 

Axxe55

Trophy Husband. Just Ask My Wife!
Dec 15, 2019
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Somewhere....In Texas!
It's odd but true that single experiences can have far-reaching influence. I was sort of into cars as a kid. I helped my dad do all the work on our cars.

To encourage me, Dad and his brother found a fixer-upper car to gift to me when I turned 16. It was a Rambler sedan (a Classic 660?) and I got used to doing the maintenance and trying to improve some minor things. Later in life, when I had money, I was certain I'd have some kind of car I built myself, a hot rod or kit car. I read and memorized every word printed in Car and Driver and Hot Rod.

The summer after I graduated high school, as I was about to drive to Houston to go to college, the car overheated. That happened occasionally and it was no big deal. I'd just put fresh water in the radiator and everything was fine. This time was different. Trying to get ahead on maintenance and not have to do car repairs while I should be going to classes, I had been fixing up the vehicle. One of the things I did was drain the water and replaced it with proper coolant.

This time, when I did what I always do, remove the radiator cap, the coolant exploded out of the opening. I was leaning right over it. I lost all the skin on my chest and much of my face. At the hospital, I remember watching a sort of green foam just grow out of my chest as we waiting for the doctor. I went into shock and, well, there's a lot more to that story but in the interest of brevity, I'll stop there.

Bottom line? Since that time, I've never felt any joy from fixing cars. I've done it. I've replaced a couple of water pumps in the driveway and changed oil and done plenty of small tasks but I don't like it and I don't get any real sense of accomplishment from it. Further, while I have always appreciated cool cars and bikes, no matter how you define "cool", I feel no serious desire to own one.

tl;dr - Hot Rod magazine was the major media influence on my gearheadedness. That influence was wiped away in a heartbeat.
Sad and unfortunate, but I do understand. I think a similar incident that happened to my grandfather influenced him to some degree. My grandfather did his own maintenance and repairs on his vehicles, and farm equipment, but looking back, I don't think he derived any pleasure or satisfaction from it, just something that needed doing and nothing more.

When he was younger, his youngest brother was working on one of their log trucks, and somehow some gasoline caught on fire, and he suffered lots of third degree burns, and died about two weeks later, and I would guess probably from infections, as it was in the early 1930's when that happened.

It could be that incident was why he felt the way about working on cars the way he did.
 

Moonpie

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My gearhead experiences were due to necessity. We lived out in BFE. My noble steed was a dilapidated old beat up 1964 Chevy pick-up. One of those memorable machines that required maintenance at every red light or stop sign going into or returning from town. LoL.
The A/C was the double 60 model.
looking back............it sucked.
 

Axxe55

Trophy Husband. Just Ask My Wife!
Dec 15, 2019
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Somewhere....In Texas!
Evel Kneivel and my father were my influences as my path to motorcycles! As a youngster I can remember watching Evel on TV making his jumps over all sorts of things. I even had all of the Evel Kneivel toys as a kid too. As I got close to being a teenager and wanting to graduate from a bicycle to something motorized on two wheels, a school buddy had an old dirt bike that I wanted to buy, but my father forbid us to have a motorcycle. He told my brother and I as long as we lived under his roof, we would never own a motorcycle. I was a bit confused as when my father was younger, and we were very young, our father always had motorcycles he rode, and even took us for rides on them with him.

So when I left home at the tender age of 16, one of the first things I bought was a used motorcycle! It was one of those dual-purpose on and off-road motorcycles. I rode that thing just about everywhere. About a year later, I bought my first motocross motorcycles, which led to a path of becoming somewhat of an adrenaline junky! For a few years, I even raced amateur motocross, and that was something I enjoyed so much. After the last accident on the track, I fractured my neck, my hips, a wrist, several ribs and my ankle, I had to give up the dirt bikes which was quite a disappointment. It was about that time, I ended up selling and trading all my dirt bikes for a couple of street bikes, that I started doing work on. But that lasted less than about two years, and decided it just wasn't what I was looking for. I wanted another Harley! So I sold and traded all the current bikes, and saved my money for about a year to put a down payment on a slightly used 1998 Softail Custom. That was in 2000, and it was the last motorcycle I owned and rode.
 

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