06/03/13 11:27PM hot rods, Muscle Cars. Trucks, readers pics, street rods

Want in on the Muscle Car Lifestyle? We Don't Blame You

Muscle cars bring (awesome) people together and can create some long-lasting connections. Even in competition, racers will help each other in a pinch—if you forgot that 5/16-inch socket, count on your racing bud to lend you one so you can get back on the track. What's not to love about this lifestyle?

Muscle Car Shows and Races

No matter where you live, you can usually find a muscle car show or race track close by where you can check out the four-wheel beauties and mingle with other muscle car enthusiasts.

If you want to enter your hotrod in the show, arrive early so you can sign up and get a number. Once you get a number, observe the competition and get chatting. During the show, judges will walk around and rate cars; stand with your car when the judges come by so you can answer any questions. Meanwhile, you’ll meet all types of people impressed by your work of art. You may even glean some tips and tricks to make your hotrod even better.

While attending drag or roundy-round races, you may pit next to someone who becomes your comrade or make a connection when you borrow a tool or part. Check out online magazines and muscle car sites to find shows and races near you.

Trusting Relationships with Restoration Shop Mechanics

Unless you know how to build engines and remodel auto exteriors, you’ll have to find a mechanic and body shop you trust to work on the love of your life. Family-owned shops with a tradition of building cars are typically reliable and trustworthy, as this is their livelihood and passion.

Experts with years of experience sometimes become like family. You'll know you can trust this shop because the owner oversees every renovation and repair. He personally knows every client and can chat forever about his own collection of hotrods.

Online Networks, Forums and Social Media

Online auto networks are great spaces to strike up new friendships with people who share your love for muscle cars. Show off that smokin’ paint job or the new meats you got for your ride. Post fun photo galleries of hot cars and give people ideas to spruce up their own babies. Likewise, you can find auto inspiration from other conversations, posts and pictures.

Sharing Auto Knowledge

Nothing's more thrilling than talking about the latest supercharge racing engine, showing off a sick paint job or bragging about the new 10 ˝-inch Mickey Thompson meats you just stuck under a mini-tub. Camaraderie naturally develops while exchanging tips and tricks with other auto experts.

We'll leave you with this one: How do you build an engine that doesn’t smoke on its initial start up? Engines smoke because of the lube used when putting the engine together. If you use STP, which is really thick and sticky, use less of it on the pistons and rings. As a result, you'll reduce the amount of smoke coming from the exhaust when you turn the key for the first time on new engine.

Photo by Flickr user Dave Sizer