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Old 11-04-2018, 08:41 PM   #1
Corley
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Default Membership dropping, interest too???

It's very odd. The recent Studebaker Drivers rag has membership numbers for the last few years, broken out by states. Only a couple states have more members now than 4 years ago, and most states show a 5 to 10 percent drop in membership. So, if this is a good indication, one would expect that there is less interest in the old car hobby. However, prices seem to be up. Quite a bit up, in fact, judging by the for sale ads.

So I wonder if the cause of higher prices is caused by the investment players at the big auctions, the higher quality of restorations being performed, or just the general economy and cost of living. And, is this same trend showing up in the model A clubs and community?

This declining membership is a really big issue, as the knowledge goes away as each old person gives up the cars. It would seem there is not much interest among the younger folks, and few to carry on. This means fewer and fewer to pass the knowledge on to. Does anybody care? There are museums closing due to lack of interest and support, and only the wealthiest few can afford to purchase and hoard these cars, taking them out of public view.

Maybe I'm glad I'm old enough that I won't be around to see what's coming... Sad...
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Old 11-04-2018, 09:17 PM   #2
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Default Re: Membership dropping, interest too???

Corley, I read your thread with interest. I am new to Model A's, I am 67, I was so welcomed into the group and made to feel like on of the guys. When looking around and talking to the members who really have the knowledge, tools and all the tips I find them to be a 10 -12 years older than me. I worry about newbies like myself whether we will be able to gain the knowledge quick enough from them to be able to instill it to guys coming along behind us.
When the economy is good people are willing to buy toy, boats, motor homes and cars, When the economy goes South so do the toys at a fraction of the price. I think that is why you are seeing big $$$$ increase in cars. How ever if you look at what type, year models etc is increasing the most I think you will find it is the cars from the 60s and 70s not model A's
I bought my car from a gentleman who was down sizing his house and his kids did not want Dads eccentric toy. I was happy to buy it and will have it for a long time. My co workers with Chevy's, Mustangs and Cuda's all shake their head when people ask for a ride in my A. Some of the guys have paint jobs the price a I paid for a nice 1930 Coupe.
The above is are observations from a newbie who really enjoys the Model A Fraternity. I have put 5200 miles on my car in the ten months I have owned it and have had nothing but good vibes from people when they see me coming down the road
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Old 11-04-2018, 09:25 PM   #3
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Default Re: Membership dropping, interest too???

Most Organizations are losing membership. I think it is a result of the times we live in with way too much else to take our time. The young are not much interested in the past or antiques. There is not much for them to be nostalgic about ( the 70s-80s?), and a computer to keep them occupied. Prices are still holding mostly because of inflation.
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Old 11-04-2018, 09:36 PM   #4
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Default Re: Membership dropping, interest too???

Many young people living in the larger cities aren't interested in cars and don't even intend getting a driver's license. They see cars pretty much the same way that the anti car guys did 130 years ago - noisy, smelly, polluting and dangerous. I'm afraid that for cars the age of our Model As, the future is not looking so rosy. I intend driving and enjoying mine as long as I can - and enjoying the waves and smiles that go with it.
I enjoy telling the smart@ssed drivers of modern cars that by the time their car is as old as mine already is, it will probably have come back as a microwave oven, a lawn mower and who knows what else. That usually shuts em up!
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Old 11-04-2018, 09:56 PM   #5
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Default Re: Membership dropping, interest too???

Seems like Hemming's is getting thicker, more cars in a lot of categories? Does it seem that way to others. Perhaps it's the "thinning of the herd. I know I just cut from three A's to two and may take it down to one before the fairies come get me. No grand kid or kid of mine is vaguely interested in the old cars. Most of the other kids in the extended family are more interested in a new cell phone than a drivers permit. Some into the thirties don't want anything to do with a car if they live in a city. SF a garage is about as expensive as renting a home out a ways. Now they are promoting dormitory style living where one or two couples occupy an apartment with kitchen and living room down the hall. Years ago I hosted a fire chief from Hong Kong. He told me the wages for the Chinese fireman would buy a 10 X 10 foot room for eight hours a day for the family. That room was shared by two other families the other 16 hrs and the firemen pulled a rickshaw to bring in food and clothing money. Maybe we didn't have it too bad after all.
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Old 11-04-2018, 09:58 PM   #6
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Default Re: Membership dropping, interest too???

It may just be that hobbies in general are declining and especially certain aspects that some of us older folks. Like Gerry Allen, I too am 67 and bought my first A last year. Like him, I am really blown away by the help I have received by others I have gotten to know. Some are 10 and even 20 years older than I am.

However, I watch a lot of the Velocity channel on TV, and nobody (in general) seems to be doing episodes of Model A or any other really vintage restoration or upkeep. A lot of its content is geared around 400 HP engines and modifications which the younger folks really dig. I guess that's what the sponsors like based on the business they get from advertising.

I am a former coin collector. Who collects coins any more? It used to be that coins would pop up in circulation every once in a while that were collectable. Not really any more. I don't even bother looking any more.

I hold a ham radio license and that hobby is literally dying off. Who wants to get on the air and contact Japan or Europe when you can do so with a cell phone as easy as you can fall off a log? The mystique has gone from that hobby. Radio Shack, which once had a line of parts for the electronics hobbyists and experimenters has gone by the way side.

I am also a member of a telephone collectors organization which is filled with older members and struggling to find younger members.

I really do intend to be around a while and enjoy my Model A, even though my wife and I seem to be one of the younger ones in the club. She really likes the car and that's important!
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Old 11-04-2018, 10:23 PM   #7
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Default Re: Membership dropping, interest too???

I cannot really add to the good points and observations already made, except to say that if you go by attendance at the big car shows and swap meets, the hobby is booming. But, my Model A club is aging - I'm one of the younger ones and I'm 75. I, too, have been unable to identify anyone in my extended family who would be interested in my old cars or my vast tool collection (and able to house them), when I am too old for them.
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Old 11-04-2018, 11:30 PM   #8
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Default Re: Membership dropping, interest too???

Quote:
Originally Posted by Magicbox51 View Post
It may just be that hobbies in general are declining and especially certain aspects that some of us older folks. Like Gerry Allen, I too am 67 and bought my first A last year. Like him, I am really blown away by the help I have received by others I have gotten to know. Some are 10 and even 20 years older than I am.

However, I watch a lot of the Velocity channel on TV, and nobody (in general) seems to be doing episodes of Model A or any other really vintage restoration or upkeep. A lot of its content is geared around 400 HP engines and modifications which the younger folks really dig. I guess that's what the sponsors like based on the business they get from advertising.

I am a former coin collector. Who collects coins any more? It used to be that coins would pop up in circulation every once in a while that were collectable. Not really any more. I don't even bother looking any more.

I hold a ham radio license and that hobby is literally dying off. Who wants to get on the air and contact Japan or Europe when you can do so with a cell phone as easy as you can fall off a log? The mystique has gone from that hobby. Radio Shack, which once had a line of parts for the electronics hobbyists and experimenters has gone by the way side.

I am also a member of a telephone collectors organization which is filled with older members and struggling to find younger members.

I really do intend to be around a while and enjoy my Model A, even though my wife and I seem to be one of the younger ones in the club. She really likes the car and that's important!
Matchbox, unfortunately I have to agree with you. While my Model A club is fairly active, it seems to be waning. Newer members tend to be older but also a few younger ones (under 50). I attribute overall decline to changing demographics, younger folks just aren't interested in anything vintage. I think another problem with most hobby clubs is that they tend to get political with some of the leadership having a "my way or the hiway" attitude. Our club was on the upswing a couple of years ago, we sponsored a very successful regional meet that should have been applauded but seemed to be unappreciated by the older regime, I think due to jealousy because their regional meet a few years earlier was a total flop. We also sponsor a skills event with the local high school that the old group is now trying to do away with. They also mounted a campaign to vote out those who had done a lot to help the club. After the voting results were tallied one of the conspirators was heard to say "now we have our club back". After that, several members dropped out.

I too am a ham operator, inactive mostly because the magic of radio no longer interests me. I had no money but started out building a station with junk T.V. and old radio components. I communicated in morse code with both coasts on low power. What a thrill that was. A lot of study was necessary to obtain a license. Today, not so much. The code requirement was dropped and technology has reduced most of the equipment to microprocessors and software. A friend of mine is a very active ham and for years took care of the club's 2 meter repeater. Everybody used it and complained when it broke but very few offered to help him and further complained when he needed money for repairs and updates.

Old telephones--I was in that too. Sold a lot of stuff on ebay but recently gave away most of it because no one wants it.

I know all of this sounds pessimistic but in spite of that, I love my Model A, it brings smiles to young and old alike, everywhere we drive it. Fortunately there are still a lot of very nice, wonderful people driving Model As who will help you if you just ask.
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Old 11-05-2018, 12:03 AM   #9
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Default Re: Membership dropping, interest too???

I am new to Model A's too. I bought one last year at age 69, and another this year. I see the same troubles in the Studebaker Club, and the local HCCA. I think we all need to step up and put some effort into getting the club cars out for runs or tours as often as possible. We get a lot of thumbs up on the road, and a lot of interest when we stop somewhere. I have seen coffee shops and gas stations empty out to come out and see the cars when we pull up. Take a grandkid along for a ride if you can. I have met a lot of interesting people and made new friends through Model A's. Can't ask for more than that. Who gets them next....I'll never know, but I hope they has as much fun as I am!

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Old 11-05-2018, 01:31 AM   #10
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Default Re: Membership dropping, interest too???

Getting the car out in public is the thing to do. I also get thumbs up whenever I take my Model A or Studebaker out. It must have been Devine intervention the other day when my 1999 Olds wouldn't start. I wanted to drive to Target to use the Kodak machine to print a couple Studebaker pictures from digital. Since the Olds wouldn't start I had to drive my 1950 Studebaker Land Cruiser to the store.


As soon as I parked at Target and got out of the car, 2 older women came almost running towards the car, and one of them was taking about Studebaker. She said her dad used to sell Studebakers. I asker her if that could be Lawrence Burke in Anoka, who owned the Studebaker dealership, and she said yes. Then she looked up and saw I was wearing my Studebaker cap, and she got even more excited and said I really made her day. So it really pays to get your old cars out in public, if just to make someone's day.


BTW, later that day the Olds started just fine, so it's still a mystery what happened in the morning.
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Old 11-05-2018, 01:38 AM   #11
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Default Re: Membership dropping, interest too???

Yeah, interest drops when you get told that you should crush your car because the pinstripe is the wrong colour.

It's not that easy to figure out that you can buy & use one if they're all in museums or only on tours. Found driving one daily & using it as a regular car gains heaps of interest.
Got a driver spec car? Do try it.
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Old 11-05-2018, 02:09 AM   #12
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Default Re: Membership dropping, interest too???

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Yeah, interest drops when you get told that you should crush your car because the pinstripe is the wrong colour.

It's not that easy to figure out that you can buy & use one if they're all in museums or only on tours. Found driving one daily & using it as a regular car gains heaps of interest.
Got a driver spec car? Do try it.
I will second Mr. Dumb Person (misnomer?). I have no means of getting to work _other_ than either one of my Model A's. I am 47 and work as an engineer in a tech company in Silicon Valley, where most of my colleagues drive BMW's and Tesla's. As stated before, until I bought my first Model A five years ago, I had never even changed the oil in a car before. Maybe I am the exception that proves the rule, but with me this hobby is going down fighting!
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Old 11-05-2018, 05:12 AM   #13
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Default Re: Membership dropping, interest too???

Folks, I think getting out and driving our cars is the best way of sparking interest in Model A's. I look at myself as a Model A ambassador. I was about to get into my car and drive off from the hardware store when a guy stopped to look at the car. Next thing I know I was driving Bob a retired police officer and a recent widower for a quick drive. When we parted he had me take a picture of him standing beside the car. His parting words were,thank you I can't wait to send this picture to my daughter and "oh by the way can I have your business card.
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Old 11-05-2018, 06:17 AM   #14
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Default Re: Membership dropping, interest too???

Recently bought a Model 'A' at age 63 and share many of the thoughts reflected in this thread.

My Model 'A' was purchased from a real nice 95 year old guy who restored 34 Model 'A's in his life and he really knew his stuff. When I picked up the truck I was grateful that he spent the entire day going over the truck with me and he allowed me to record video of the day which is good since my memory is terrible. It's great footage and I've learned a lot from it.

Even though it's a different world I am optimistic that there will be others getting into this hobby with the same attitude. Keep in mind there are some things in this different world that work in our favor too. In addition to learning from club members, all the online knowledge and videos that are out there make it easier to learn about working on these cars. Youtube has great information about working on Model 'A's (especially Jack Bahm's informative Model 'A' videos). And this forum is another helpful resource.

Regardless, the future should be interesting. I'll be having fun.
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Old 11-05-2018, 06:53 AM   #15
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Default Re: Membership dropping, interest too???

I got back into Model As a few years ago around age 60 because I finally had time, a garage and a little extra money. It has been great, but I have gone a little crazy, buying a second Model A, two V8s and now a Model T. If he can, I think my son will want to keep one of my Model As. He really likes them. I hope so.
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Old 11-05-2018, 07:34 AM   #16
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Default Re: Membership dropping, interest too???

All good points above, but I don't think you should use a club's membership as a barometer. The reason I say this is think about why someone needs the/a club. Quite honestly, I do not need either club. The majority of the hobbyists today feel the same way. Unless you are attending a club sponsored function, most hobbyists do not see a need other than receiving the magazine. Finding parts can be done more efficiently on the internet. Asking questions about certain details are more quickly and efficiently found on the internet. Receiving a magazine every two months is way too slow for most hobbyists.


The way I think you judge the interest in the hobby is to follow the social media pages specifically for the different marques of vehicles you like. Look at the profile of the persons who are asking questions or showing off their car online. You will quickly see if involves WAY more folks than only the Social Security eligible crowd.
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Old 11-05-2018, 07:59 AM   #17
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Default Re: Membership dropping, interest too???

I got an A when I was 12,(still have it)and have only known a handful of people involved in clubs.At the ground level,or where I am,there is a lot of interest in the A's,but no desire to be part of a formal organization.It used to be a good way to meet and hang around with other like minded people,but that is easier now by just sitting in front of the screen.I have zero interest in driving around as a group,same thing with shows.I like to go to some,but not to compete.I was actually in my early 20's when I was soured on the Model A clubs by the older members.I did belong to both MAFCA and MARC,but I dropped them years ago.I am not a clubby type person,there was just no reason for me to belong.If I belonged to a club for everything I play with,it would be more than a full time job.Antique tractors and equipment,old VW's,Studebakers,old guns,antique and modern motorcycles,old garage equipment,signs,toys,etc.I've met some A people that meet informally,nice bunch of people,but they meet for coffee on Friday mornings.
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Old 11-05-2018, 08:02 AM   #18
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Default Re: Membership dropping, interest too???

I second the comments of B. Terry.

I have owned Model A’s for almost 60 years, and have never been a car club member.

Just don’t have the time. If something needs attention that I can’t do. I pay to have it done. I treat our Sport Coupe like our everyday driver. No shade tree mechanic work.

My feelings are that a properly restored or a well maintained car will always have a market. Just look at all the new owners on The Ford Barn. They want to drive them and have fun.

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Old 11-05-2018, 08:08 AM   #19
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Default Re: Membership dropping, interest too???

often discussed, seldom concluded and yes, Model As will be around forever.


Packards, Pierce and a whole lot of more expensive cars? Maybe not so much.


Yes there is a generational change occurring. Tech and money have new meanings today.


Young peoples interest has often changed and is changing. Wont really matter to most of us.


Go have fun and dont be too concerned.....
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Old 11-05-2018, 09:16 AM   #20
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Default Re: Membership dropping, interest too???

Now taking this in a slightly different direction...

I currently have two model As in a stable of old iron. One is a restored 29 Tudor, the other a hot rodded 29 cc pickup. Hands down, the hot rodded pickup gets way more attention when out driving, than does the stock restored Tudor. People don't tend to notice the stock Tudor as much, but I get tons of thumbs up and comments about the pickup. It is very clear when looking at the pickup that it is a model A, but with a fancy face.

I also drive 3 different Studebaker's, a 54 starliner (hot rodded), a 63 Avanti, (stock), and a 62 Champ truck. Once again, the hot rod gets all the attention, and it is in crappy paint and primer, but it has a certain look, that people seem to like and comment on.

Does this mean we all should be driving hot rods? I don't think so, but I do think it means we should consider the hot rods our friends, as they help keep interest up in the old car community. I hate car shows, and only do one local club, but frankly that club is more of a social thing than for information or contacts. But, when driving in a line with them, they really only just 'tolorate' my hot rod 29 pickup, even though it often draws the most attention. That's OK, I rather like bringing up the rear, and stopping to help the stock As when they break down.

So what's my point? Not much, but I'll happily accept all those tools from the guy who has no family members interested in inheriting them, but he is only 75, and I am 78, so I may have to give him mine first. I hope he has a BIG trailer. Really, since none of my family shows any interest in mechanics, I don't care who gets this stuff when I expire.

PS. Based on the fun I have with my hot rods, I'm currently building a 26 T roadster hot rod! Who says I am too old for fun? (Sure hope I'll be able to crawl into it!)

PS. I ALWAYS do ALL my own mechanical work, on both the old cars and my moderns. That is my real fun!
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Old 11-05-2018, 09:23 AM   #21
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I'm blessed that my son likes my old cars so I don't have to worry about my cars future and I have 3 grandchildren and another due next May and 4 Model A's to go to my grandchildren. The oldest (3yrs old) from all indications may be a car guy ( he is partial to my tudor) but I don't know about the younger ones. Maybe I will be lucky and they all will appreciate their Model A.


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Old 11-05-2018, 09:34 AM   #22
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I only have one friend who is interested in cars. None of my schoolmates or close friends are interested. I'm 65, but luckily my son is into vehicles and is taking interest in my A. I have noticed several local guys who were into cars but they succumbed and are now are driving a Prius or Kias and are no longer in the hobby. It's the sign of the times. Younger people are not into collectibles of any kind, they are only interested in getting the latest $999 Iphone. I'm not too concerned, it's fun for me and that's what counts.
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Old 11-05-2018, 09:52 AM   #23
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Default Re: Membership dropping, interest too???

Talk to the Model A parts vendors and they'll tell you business is good. There are several posts here saying that members have sold A's to "thin the herd". Those A's didn't disappear into thin air. Instead, they were sold to people that would prefer to get info on You Tube when it comes to repair work. Face Book is a great way to compare notes on A's. The interest in Model A's is just as high as it's ever been, it's just taken a different direction when it comes to how one gets information. Marque clubs as well as generic car clubs are not doing all that well for the same reasons. Last week, there were over 160,000 registered guest at the SEMA show in Las Vegas. The interest in cars is not fading away by any stretch of the imagination.
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Old 11-05-2018, 11:10 AM   #24
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I think part of the problem is that cars today are so much more comfortable, they pretty much all have power steering, power brakes, ABS, air conditioning, cruise control, hi tech sound systems, power windows, power seats, lane departure warning, back up cameras, self parking (on some models), etc. (you get the picture). And in the future self driving cars. So why would a young person, who grew up with all the comforts of home, want to get into a drafty, noisy, smelly, old car that you actually have to drive and which doesn't have a cup holder, not to mention a bluetooth connection to their cell phone. My grand kids wonder what the window crank handles are for?
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Old 11-05-2018, 11:11 AM   #25
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I was 53 when I got my A inherited from my Dad who got the car from my grandfather whom had purchased it new. I helped Dad restore the A. Actually lost interest at the time. I was just 16 and loved muscle cars. Took the car over when Dad passed restored it and really haven't driven it much. But have had a growing interest in it as of late. I do belong to 3 clubs attend no meetings right now as I don't have the extra time. What I'm trying to say is look at your average owner they are retirement age ( I know probably catch some flak but that's ok ) Have more time to invest in the hobby.I love the old car and the memories it holds for me. I need to spend more time with it so I can work on it with more confidence. That's why I'm here you guys have great ideas and give numerous answers to help troubleshoot problems..So thanks Guys.
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Old 11-05-2018, 11:40 AM   #26
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I've never had much interest in going to any big club meets because I really have no interest in seeing 100 of just one marque.About 12-14 years ago I was at a show with a lot of A's.There were 6,(six) DeLuxe roadsters there,Washington blue,straw wheels,Firestone WW's,dual sidemounts,stoneguards,LB top and interiors,trunks,these cars were virtually identical.As one of the owners put it,they should have split us up,but the show folks thought it was a good idea to clump up the like vehicles.Four of those cars had the oval speedometers.
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Old 11-05-2018, 11:52 AM   #27
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Default Re: Membership dropping, interest too???

I'm 65 and have a number of stock Model A's, T's, an EV8 and a wartime Jeep. A perhaps interesting observation: Membership in the two national Model T clubs appears to be steady or even booming with lots of younger members, not so much in the Model A clubs, and even less in the Ev8 club. Fair amount of young interest in the Military vehicle and re-enacting groups we belong to. Not sure how to interpret that.

My daughter loves the cars and the eras they represent, is very knowledgeable, and wants at least one or more of my cars when the time comes. My son likes the cars, but isn't into them as much as she is. We have a lot of young people in our Home Front re-enacting group that love fashions, dances, music, and just life from the 20's through the 40's. Again, not sure how to interpret that.

I think the interest may be there, but the expression of that interest isn't being seen in club membership per se. Might be partly due to things like this forum - younger folks seem to get the information they need and even some of the comradery from sources other than clubs and club meetings. Social media, Facebook etc., seems to have taken on a lot of the role clubs used to fill.
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Old 11-05-2018, 11:54 AM   #28
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Default Re: Membership dropping, interest too???

I like entering car shows just to show off Barb and be a contrast to the $$$$$$$ of chrome sitting on either side of me. I often get lots of looks compared to the hot rods for that reason. I also let kids sit in the car if they ask nicely which they seem to really enjoy and if it sparks something great. I also love just driving around with the club which I use as a social event and learning area.


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Old 11-05-2018, 01:22 PM   #29
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Default Re: Membership dropping, interest too???

This forum is really my club. I check in every day and often more than once. Then I go to the early V8 side as I have an A and a V8. I also check in with several FB Model A and V8 sites. I tried liking the national clubs but I can’t go through so many pages of fashion and various club info to look at some cars. I think the hobby is alive but club membership is going to continue to suffer because we can get what we want instantly on the web. If it is important I’m 61.
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Old 11-05-2018, 03:16 PM   #30
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Well folks,

I can give you a first hand experience to younger kids and old cars. I am 17 so I should know a thing or two about the kids of today .

None of them care.

Im sure that you all know that already, but it just confirms your suspicions. I built a model T speedster last year, talked about it a ton, photos, whatever. Not one of my friends or classmates could care at all. They all seem to be interested in sports (Which has always been a common hobby type thing), and video games, or even nothing! (Quite a few kids have absolutely no hobbies...) There have been a couple of kids I have met that have been interested in newer cars, Im talking 60s and up. Anything before that? Not at all.

I think something that is a huge "hurdle" into getting younger people into antique cars is the price. As an example, right now, I am looking for a model A to buy. Ive saved up the past few years, and have about $7000 to spend. What can that get me? About 80% of the As out there for $7000 are full of issues, or have no paint, or no interior, or all of the above. Yes, the nice ones are out there, but dont exactly come across too often. Thats fine and all, but the cost to do that work is a substantial amount most of the time. I cant just come up with another $3000 for a new interior overnight. Instead, now its a waiting game of getting enough saved up again to complete work. And then theres finding the time with school and all.

However, lets say I had $10000 to spend. I can find 100s of really nice As for that price.

I am an outlier. I am considered insane for "wasting" all of my money on antique cars. Most kids could probably safely afford $5000. Whats that get ya? A rust bucket.

Kids are not getting into this hobby because 1. Who wants a slow antique car?, and 2., Who has an extra $10000 to spend at 17? Very very very few.

For $5000, instead of a rust bucket A I could buy a super nice original 60s Ford!

It seems quite a few folks on this forum bought their As in the 50s. Lets take an example of someone that bought a 31 coupe in 1957 for $100.00. That money today is... $914! Today... how much for a decent driver? $7000 and up! Id say that there is a large gap in prices. Nobody is going to ever let a nice A go for prices like those! So how is a kid supposed to get into this? Wait until they are retired and have plenty of money and time?

You also cant use a model A daily in most of the country, which requires the purchase of another car...

Just my opinion on this whole issue.

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Old 11-05-2018, 04:05 PM   #31
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Default Re: Membership dropping, interest too???

Denis4x4 is spot on. I retired from Snyder's, almost three years ago. The cars are the CONSTANT. The people come and go. Their level of interest, expectations, and available discretionary funds change. At Snyder's, I would take at least a half dozen calls a week from people asking " I just acquired a Model A, now what?" Often these were impulse buys at auctions or even family heirlooms. I still get such calls.
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Old 11-05-2018, 05:17 PM   #32
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Well folks,

I can give you a first hand experience to younger kids and old cars. I am 17 so I should know a thing or two about the kids of today .

None of them care.


You also cant use a model A daily in most of the country, which requires the purchase of another car...

Just my opinion on this whole issue.



I have actively been around this hobby for 50 years, ...and each decade I have seen a new generation of club participants. Even when my father co-founded the Model-A club in the Houston area, he was in his early 30's. Dad was a quasi hot rodder/drag racer during his mid - late 20's however as he matured both physically and mentally, he chose a hobby that his growing family could participate in. I think that is the big attraction with most Model-A hobbyists as these cars are relatively cheap to own and give a decent bang for your buck with family fun. You also must realize that for each 50-60 year old Model-A hobbyist that purchases a Model-A was once a 17 y.o. that likely did not have any interest in owning one then. Most hobbyists grow into the desire to own one, -therefore do not let the current age of the hobbyists' scare you. There has always been someone growing old enough to want to own one.
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Old 11-05-2018, 06:04 PM   #33
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For most of us, the discussion centers around many points as stated, but should add that just the feel of driving a "classic" vehicle on a country road at a slower pace can be humbling while also playing with fuel mixture spark, etc. The downside is that slower "classics" or ones with ponderous attributes don't always fair well on freeways, etc. Muscle cars are more user friendly that way. The Model A has a couple of advantages in that one can learn to work on it and parts are available thanks to the vendors and so many A' s produced. In our area, there are virtually no shops remaining to work on old cars, while at $60-$100/ hr. , even maintenance becomes prohibitive. Try to get babbitt poured or a ring gear rejuvinated for a 1919 Loco.!!
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Old 11-06-2018, 02:24 AM   #34
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Default Re: Membership dropping, interest too???

Joining a club can get you a bunch of contacts about Model A's for sale. $7,000 can still buy a good drivable Model A, as I've seen a few in the past couple years in the $5,000 to $7,500 range. They were nice cars that could be driven as is and had good paint and upholstery. They don't have to be mint to be enjoyed. Check out the different clubs want ads, and at times a bargain shows up. Run a wanted ad on Craigslist, and a good car may show up for the right price.


If you don't mind moving up to a post war car, then Studebakers are one of the most underappreciated and undervalued cars to be found. Corvairs also are a good car and can be bought for not much money.
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Old 11-06-2018, 06:30 AM   #35
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Default Re: Membership dropping, interest too???

All the new generation needs to do is Google his/her question . No need to join a club. I attend a Model A meet and Hudson meet on the internet daily... I'm 78 and my son's interest is an 85 Monte Carlo. The AACA magazine looks like a used car mag to me. Time marches on.
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Old 11-06-2018, 09:20 AM   #36
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Default Re: Membership dropping, interest too???

If you are on your own and have no parents or family to back you up to get into the hobby, as it appears that Johnnya101 has going, Then yes, he is spot on in his post above. Most of the younger generation could care less especially if they do not have the backing of their parents to get them going.

Find a Model A Club that is close to you, join the club, go to every club meeting that you can, get to know the members, show 100% interest in the hobby, make your interest known and soon you will enjoy the benifits with your own Model A.

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Old 11-06-2018, 11:34 AM   #37
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Default Re: Membership dropping, interest too???

Re joining a club; true if you can get past the "old guard" by showing a little back bone and that you are there because you have an interest in the cars.
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Old 11-06-2018, 12:20 PM   #38
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Interesting thread, and no easy answers.

I moved away from the local car clubs many years ago for all the same reasons folks have mentioned here. I do still belong to MAFCA and MARC but really don't see the need. The Internet has made them obsolete.

I've also dropped the AACA. To me the best values of old car magazines are Hemmings Muscle Cars and Hemmings Classic Cars. They come monthly, they are heavy stock paper all color photos about 100 pages and stuffed full of information, at a whopping $1.88 per issue if you pay for 36 months! Compare that to the bi-monthly club magazines that come out to over $8 per issue and they are 75% redundant fluff I don't care about. Compared to the Hemmings magazines if they were monthly they'd be $16 per issue.

Keith also mentioned about the big marque club shows and the repetition of cars and how old it actually gets seeing them. I can't agree more. I stopped going to the Mustang shows, Shelby shows, and all that because it hit me one day, just how boring that all actually was. A line of '65-'66 Mustangs all 50 of them with the hoods popped open and usually some snob sitting in a lawn chair behind it. Naw, never again.

I am a die hard Ford guy, so I want to see all of them, Torinos, Galaxies, Fairlanes, F-Series pickups, Torino Elites and Starsky and Hutch Torinos, heck even old Fairmonts and Granadas plus old Chevies and Mopars and Caddies (from the 60's!). I saw a '68 Mercury this summer just like the one McGarrett drove in the original Hawaii Five-O. I loved that car how cool was that!

I appreciate all the old cars not just stuck on one make, although I'd never own anything personally but the Blue Oval that's just me

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Old 11-06-2018, 02:13 PM   #39
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Default Re: Membership dropping, interest too???

Tom,


well said. Corvairs are a bargain and my brother and I are always amazed that they never caught on.
Some of what Johnny is saying and also Tom, has to do with your location. Prices seem higher on the coasts and somewhat more reasonable in the center of the country, or on the outskirts of the populous............ Maine MN AL WI etc.
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Old 11-06-2018, 07:35 PM   #40
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RE; "
Keith also mentioned about the big marque club shows and the repetition of cars and how old it actually gets seeing them. I can't agree more. I stopped going to the Mustang shows, Shelby shows, and all that because it hit me one day, just how boring that all actually was. A line of '65-'66 Mustangs all 50 of them with the hoods popped open and usually some snob sitting in a lawn chair behind it. Naw, never again"


While it would not stop me from going to a show, I have to agree 100% about going to a show and seeing noting but black Model T's or just Model A's. I like variety and am not a Ford snob. I like all kinds of makes and models. Same with music and a lot of other things, variety IS the spice of life.
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Old 11-06-2018, 07:52 PM   #41
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Default Re: Membership dropping, interest too???

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I stopped going to the Mustang shows, Shelby shows, and all that because it hit me one day, just how boring that all actually was. A line of '65-'66 Mustangs all 50 of them with the hoods popped open and usually some snob sitting in a lawn chair behind it. Naw, never again.
As much as we lust after 50 28-30 Model As all lined up with the hoods open so we could inspect them in detail and talk to the owners, I would guess there are as many (or more) folks that lust after a line of 65-66 Mustangs with the hoods up for the same reasons.

Different strokes for different folks. It would be super boring if we all liked the same cars. I don't begrudge the Mustang fans, or the muscle car fans, or the rat rod fans, or the custom and modified fans, or the 57 Chevy fans, or the ... Doesn't bother me in the least that not everyone thinks a Model A is God's gift to the car hobby.

It doesn't degrade my fun with my A any to know that club membership is declining, that kids are not as attracted to As as I am, that our cars are not appreciating, that non Model A owners still enjoy life.

It's a hobby...not a religion.

Have fun with your cars and your car friends.
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Old 11-06-2018, 08:34 PM   #42
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[QUOTE=r
While it would not stop me from going to a show, I have to agree 100% about going to a show and seeing noting but black Model T's or just Model A's. I like variety and am not a Ford snob. I like all kinds of makes and models. Same with music and a lot of other things, variety IS the spice of life.[/QUOTE]

Can't argue that but seeing a big group of Model A's is neat, neater than a flood of Mustangs and I'm a big Ford fan as I said. And also I have to admit one of the neatest old car shows I have attended in the last 6 years or so was the Mississippi Valley Chapter of the AACA, because of the variety. Oh yes and Old Car Fest at Greenfield Village, hard to top that one
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Old 11-06-2018, 11:23 PM   #43
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Default Re: Membership dropping, interest too???

Johnnya101,

Since it has not been mentioned in anyones post to date, there is a program to help young Model A enthusiasts, this quoted from the website:

http://www.mafca.com/y_resto_award.html

Model A Youth Restoration Award

If you are age 12 but less than 22 and are in the process of restoring your Model A, please read about our program and then check out website for the eligibility requirements and an application.

The Model A Youth Restoration Award (MAYRA) program has been helping youth since 1994. Our purpose is to help them restore their Model As by providing financial support to purchase parts and supplies. Since 1994, 81 youth have received over $94,000 to help with their restorations. In 2018, nine recipients each received $2,200 in gift certificates.

MAYRA is funded primarily by local Chapters and Regions of MAFCA and MARC. In addition, the national MAFCA and MARC organizations make donations to the fund as well as do several of the Model A Ford parts vendors. We receive donations in varying amounts from Chapters and Regions and from individuals, often as memorials to deceased members.

The awards are presented every two years at either a MAFCA National Convention or a MARC National Meet. The next awards will be presented in 2020 at the MAFCA National Convention in Texas.

The future of our hobby rests with our younger generation. They benefit from our support and we benefit by keeping the hobby active. The award is open to all sons, daughters, grandsons and granddaughters of members of MAFCA or MARC or the applicant may be a MAFCA or MARC member on his or her own.

If you know a candidate age of 12 but less than 22, tell him or her about our program and refer them to our website. The Model A Youth Restoration Award is approved as a 501 (c) 3 educational charity.

Donations should be sent to: Model A Youth Restoration Award, 13478 Egbert Street , Sylmar, CA 91342

Visit the Model A Youth Restoration Award website at: www.ModelARestorationAward.org

Last Updated: 07/09/2018

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Old 11-07-2018, 12:53 PM   #44
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Default Re: Membership dropping, interest too???

Today's 20 year olds like "retro" things but only if they can wear it or look at it in their house. A lot of others just see a Model A as a potential hotrod. The rest of us are just eccentric (me) or old (I'm getting there). At least I got my kids into old cars early. Perhaps old Model A's will become more available to us true old-car enthusiasts who aren't millionaires.
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Old 11-07-2018, 02:29 PM   #45
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Default Re: Membership dropping, interest too???

The # of people who have the mechanical skills and knowledge has drastically shrunk with the progression of complicated modern/low maintenance vehicles. Most people do not even know how to change a tire, change oil, find a blown fuse, etc. Due to auto complexity and budget constraints most High Schools have discontinued Shop classes including Auto Mechanics, which was a major source of teaching auto basics and a source of encouraging young people.


Also shrunk is the amount of people who are "backyard mechanics". Again due to the knowledge required/economics of working on vehicles. In the past many maintained there own vehicles to save money due to the having to get by during the Depression and/or due a lower standard of living in those days. Another cause is the U.S. morphing away from a rural society decreasing basic general overall mechanical knowledge. Farmers know how to make things work, even if some fixes are infamous "farmer fixes".
I see a lot of comments on the Barn about how easy it is to maintain and work on the Model A. Basic things like replacement of water pumps, working on distrbutors, replacing a radiator, etc. seem doable for a person of my skills. However to properly work on the motor and the rest of the drivetrain, suspension, front end, and brakes is beyond the skills of a large percentage of people including myself who are/ maybe interested in As.


To pay to have this type of work is very expensive. If you need work done a mechanic with Model A skill must be found which is getting harder and harder to find. If lucky you can find someone reputable close, to perform major work/repairs. My A has been in the family since the early 60s, and I inherited it. But still have spent over $7,000 on it. I still have to replace the radiator, possibly have motor rebuilt, and the paint/body is average to below average (runner). Also the brakes need attention and possibly need the steering/front end worked on. My point is, and also was made in this string, owning an A takes real commitment, time, and depending on the Model A a lot of $. Something a lot of younger people, people with young families, etc. do not have, so they may prefer to own something from the 50s/60s/70s, that is easier and less costly to own/maintain.


All of the above are obstacles to owning an A. The Clubs, the Barn, the Model A Vendors, and the Internet help. But an A owner has to make a commitment to the A that is usually is not required for most cars from the 50s/60s/70s.


So it would not surprise me if the A hobby continues to decline.
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Old 11-07-2018, 03:38 PM   #46
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I think part of the problem is that cars today are so much more comfortable, they pretty much all have power steering, power brakes, ABS, air conditioning, cruise control, hi tech sound systems, power windows, power seats, lane departure warning, back up cameras, self parking..............
........connection to their cell phone. My grand kids wonder what the window crank handles are for?
Lane departure warning isn't really needed if you don't text & drive. Who thought that up anyway?
As for phone & stuff, i am adding a phone charger port & found a bluetooth speaker is.. well, while not the greatest sound system ever it does the job.



Quote:
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I cant just come up with another $3000 for a new interior overnight.
Jute sack interior is an affordable alternative. One time i used a dead leather couch from the dump.



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It's a hobby...not a religion.

Have fun with your cars and your car friends.
It's not what? *thought it was* i don't have any friends though...
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Old 11-07-2018, 07:40 PM   #47
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Another BIG issue is storage and place to work. Not everyone lives on a 1/4 acre with room for a shop, and many would be lucky to have a one car garage also then finding off site storage that you can work in, good luck.
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Old 11-07-2018, 10:27 PM   #48
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Their are still roughly the same number of antique autos out in circulation. Just fewer people interested in the club part of owning one. Younger folks are acquiring antique cars, but many clubs often don’t do things younger folks want to do, since many of the clubs members are mostly older people. Just my observation...
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Old 11-08-2018, 02:08 AM   #49
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As I think someone said elsewhere in this string, there are plenty of "old" people that have never joined or wanted to join any of the clubs even if they know they are around. So not joining is not just a young person thing.
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Old 11-08-2018, 04:32 PM   #50
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If you don't mind moving up to a post war car, then Studebakers are one of the most underappreciated and undervalued cars to be found. Corvairs also are a good car and can be bought for not much money.
Add into that group Hudsons, ...and for prewar cars, don't forget the Franklins. Both of these marques are extremely affordable on entry-level and highly respected.
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Old 11-08-2018, 09:15 PM   #51
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As I think someone said elsewhere in this string, there are plenty of "old" people that have never joined or wanted to join any of the clubs even if they know they are around. So not joining is not just a young person thing.
And as SteveB31 said..... I witnessed that in my home town of about 950 people.

In the 70's and early 80's there were 15 Model A Fords running around here, 13 of them restored and on the road, within the town limits and out to about 2-3 miles of farm country outside of town. I was the only one who belonged to MAFCA. I'd give the other guys copies of The Restorer, they'd all agree it was a nice magazine, but not one would join MAFCA or MARC they all said 'why?' and kept doing their thing w/o a National Club. We had enough Model A Fords just in this town to form a club
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Old 11-09-2018, 12:55 PM   #52
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Default Re: Membership dropping, interest too???

I was looking at a bunch of dad's old pictures of when he went to car meets back in the 1960's. It looked like they had FUN! Driving events/races where they held eggs in spoons, dressing up, swap meets, and plenty of touring.

The cars/parts/hobby were also CHEAP before the big money came in, and priced the 'good' stuff out of reach.

Nowadays, meets are a bunch of elderly people slowly wandering around, talking about the old days... (those are the GOOD ones) The less fun crowd goes around complaining about everything, takes everything too seriously, nit picks things to death, etc.

From what I can tell from studying all the photos (he was a camera addict) he and mom had a BLAST with the hobby! They did a lot more PLAYING back then, and less worrying about the correct color/width pinstripe. He and mom both told me about an 'egg' race where they had the '34 up on two wheels, but mom never dropped the egg. lol Simple fun with cheap cars that the general public didn't want anymore. He started in 1961, and I can see what he liked so much about it back then! It would be equivalent to people today gathering up 1980's cars, and having fun with them.
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Old 11-09-2018, 04:08 PM   #53
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Default Re: Membership dropping, interest too???

I've always known about 14 A's within a few miles of me.Out of all those guys,only one ever belonged to a club,and he said he quit that in the mid-70's.All those guys still have their cars,but I am the only one of them that has a computer.Most of them still have their old catalogs from when they did the cars over,Ricks and J.C.Whitney was the most popular.One guy still carries his Xeroxed sheets of the judging standards with him.In the 70's I would whine about how I wished I could buy parts at the 60's prices.Then in the 80's I wished for the 70's prices.In the 90's I wished for the 80's.Now I'm wishing for the 2000's prices again.
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Old 11-10-2018, 12:17 PM   #54
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Default Re: Membership dropping, interest too???

Old car memories are made when you are old enough to know how to drive but too young to get a license and too young to get the cash needed to buy one. You end up dreaming about the cars that the older cool guys are driving and end up thinking "just gotta have one" of those.
For my age the dream was the Model T survivor owned by the teen age guy across the street that he drove through the woods at night with the girls screaming, the 29 Dodge with 42,000 miles owned by the old couple also across the street, and the two Model A coupes sitting behind the gas station "needing work" that I could have bought for $50 each.
You grow up dreaming of having what you couldn't have back then. Young people remember newer stuff. They don't care about older stuff. It's normal.
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Old 11-11-2018, 01:19 AM   #55
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Default Re: Membership dropping, interest too???

Quote:
Originally Posted by BRENT in 10-uh-C View Post
All good points above, but I don't think you should use a club's membership as a barometer. The reason I say this is think about why someone needs the/a club. Quite honestly, I do not need either club. The majority of the hobbyists today feel the same way. Unless you are attending a club sponsored function, most hobbyists do not see a need other than receiving the magazine. Finding parts can be done more efficiently on the internet. Asking questions about certain details are more quickly and efficiently found on the internet. Receiving a magazine every two months is way too slow for most hobbyists.


The way I think you judge the interest in the hobby is to follow the social media pages specifically for the different marques of vehicles you like. Look at the profile of the persons who are asking questions or showing off their car online. You will quickly see if involves WAY more folks than only the Social Security eligible crowd.
Well written. It's the CLUBS people are losing interest in not the cars. The cars sell themselves they don't need us. The idea of a Club is what needs to be addressed. I am a hobbyist under the age of 40. I grew up in a time were if you had a Buick you joined the Buick Club. Now just join a Buick forum or a facebook group. Clubs really got an up hill battle. We have to prove to people driving horseless carriages that they should also have a good horse. Benny
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Old 11-11-2018, 01:24 AM   #56
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Default Re: Membership dropping, interest too???

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=F8VtaSy2PjM
Grass gymkana with cones & stuff. Where the less horsepower cars tend to win as they have more traction.

Consider this for your next club activity.
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Old 11-11-2018, 09:00 AM   #57
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Default Re: Membership dropping, interest too???

Club membership to me, is not a measure of vintage/Classic car interest! I would venture, it is just not the way people want to enjoy their interest, for some it is still OK, but.......
I did some googling on this membership thing and it appears membership trends were starting to drop in some reports around 2011, when someone decided to take a look at it and publish something. And the reports were by clubs in the USA and the UK. Yet, unless any of these Classic or old cars have been wrecked, someone still owns them and is enjoying them. And my grandson, who I have gotten involved in mechanic work on replacing the Model A Radiator, is into it now and I venture, when I am not around any more, he will get my Model A. He will deserve it by then.
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Old 11-11-2018, 09:13 AM   #58
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Default Re: Membership dropping, interest too???

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Originally Posted by SteveB31 View Post
Their are still roughly the same number of antique autos out in circulation. Just fewer people interested in the club part of owning one.
This is both true and false. There are still the same number of old cars out there, but... First, some percentage goes to hot rodding each year. Not a totally bad thing if it keeps the old look and interest in all thing automotive, but it cuts into those in our marque's numbers. Next, big $$ collectors tend to take car OUT of circulation, and rat hole them into private collections. Also not totally a bad thing, because when those collectors croak, we get excited and all a twitter about the big estate auction. Lastly, some number die a death by rusting away, under going the big hammer/smasher, or crashing into an oncoming freight train due to iffy brakes. This is, indeed, a bad thing. (Yikes, I better fix my brakes!)

When it comes right down to it, we don't really "own" these things, we just care for them for a period of time. Then the big estate auction, and someone else comes along and care for them for a while, and so on.

( Letting one rust away in a field is probably not going to win any points for you in a caretakers contest! My advise, if you don't want to maintain it, don't buy it. I never follow my own advice!)
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Old 11-12-2018, 04:57 PM   #59
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Default Re: Membership dropping, interest too???

Quote:
Originally Posted by dumb person View Post
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=F8VtaSy2PjM
Grass gymkana with cones & stuff. Where the less horsepower cars tend to win as they have more traction.

Consider this for your next club activity.



I think you are IP address banned now?





No wonder membership is dropping
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