In This Issue
  • Through the Windscreen
  • Through the Rearview Mirror
  • Lotus Blossom Festival
  • Cool Your Coupe'

Readers' Gallery

If you would like your vehicle to appear in next month's newsletter, please send a photo and brief description to Dave Hutchison.

Calendar of Events
10- 13 -- Austin Healey Encounter 2011,  Paradise, PA  

12-13 -- Roadster Factory Summer Party, Armagh, PA 

13-18 -- 60th Rolls Royce Annual Meet, Lake Tahoe, CA 

13-14 -- New Hope Auto Show,
New Hope, PA  

13-14 -- Mt Equinox Hillclimb, Manchester, VT 

20 -- Perkasie Under the Stars, Perkasie, PA 

21 -- Pebble Beach Concours,
Pebble Beach, CA 

21 -- UK Car Day, Rochester, NY 

26-28 -- British Car Triathalon
Northport, ME  

27 -- British Racing Green
Simeone Foundation, Philadelphia, PA  

28 -- Day on the Farm,
DVR AACA,  Bluebell,  PA 

28 -- 22nd “A Taste of Britain” Polo Match, Rothsville, PA 

2-5 -- SVRA Rolex Vintage Festival,
Lime Rock Park Lakeville, CT 

3 -- 46th Annual Duryea Days, Boyertown, PA 

7-11 -- Mercedes Gull Wing Group Convention, Hot Springs, VA 

9-11 -- SVRA Zippo Vintage Grand Prix, Watkins Glen, NY 

9-11 -- Radnor Hunt Concours, Edgemont, PA

10 -- Moss Motors Fall Fest 2010,
Dukes Island Park, Bridgewater, NJ  

16-18 -- Glenmore Gathering,
Canton, OH  

16-18 -- The British Invasion,
Stowe, VT 

17 -- British Car Show,
Delaware City, DE.

17 -- 14th Annual British Car Show,
Ocean Grove, NJ 

17-18 -- Nation’s Capital Jaguar NCJOC,  Reston, VA 

17-18 -- Fairfield Concours,
Westport, CT  

18 -- Jaguar Drivers Club Concours Show, Centerport LI, NY

18 -- Buckingham Concours, Buckingham, PA 

18 -- Hagley Antique Car Show, Wilmington, DE. 

22-25 -- 6- Pack Trials Festival  2011, Galena, IL 

24 – 32nd Annual MGs on the Rocks,
Bel Aire, MD

25 -- 15th Annual Orphan Car Show, Ypsilanti, MI  

30-October 2 -- TVR “Out of the Woodwork, ” Princeton Junction, NJ. 

30-October 2 -- Louisville Concours,  Louisville, KT  

Works in Progress

We always have a number of interesting projects going on in our shop. Take a look.

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Link of the Month

Here's a complete list of links to clubs and businesses that we support.

Our Videos

Fall Covered Bridge Tour Through Bucks County

1959 Lotus Elite S-1 #1096 Restoration 2005-2007

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Ragtops & Roadsters

203 S. 4th St.
Perkasie, Pa 18944

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70 S. Franklin St.
Pottstown, PA 19464

August 2011

  A Look Through
the Windscreen

Previewing events of interest to the owners of British or Specialty Cars

By Dave Hutchison
We’ll be at the New Hope Auto Show this weekend (August 13-14). This is a great show right in our own backyard; stop by our exhibit to chat and check out the Hudson Terraplane and Austin Healey 3000.  We’ll also bring along some cars for sale.
On Saturday, Pollock Auto Restoration (our sister shop in Pottstown) is sponsoring the trophies for the Cars of the ‘20s category; on Sunday, Ragtops & Roadsters is sponsoring the Jaguar class.
The following week (August 20) we’ll stay in Perkasie for the “Under the Stars Car Show” sponsored by the Perkasie Olde Towne Association and The Good-Time Motorvators. Every year we have the choice between this and Pebble Beach. For some reason, Perkasie always wins out. Maybe we'll make it to Pebble Beach next year!
Perkasie is a fun, local evening at an in-town venue, with more than 400 classic, custom and antique cars on display throughout the streets of downtown Perkasie. 
On August 27, it’s a surprise Birthday Bash for my Italia 2000. Members of the Delaware Valley Triumphs Club will be on hand at my house in Quakertown to celebrate and hold their summer barbeque and picnic. Send me an email for more details.
The next day (August 28) we’ll join the Lanco MG Club at the 22nd Annual "A Taste of Britain" car show in Rothsville, Pennsylvania. It’s a gathering for all British vehicles and motorcycles combined with a Polo Match for the "Taste of Britain Cup." The Show Field opens at 11 a.m. for vehicles. The polo match is at 2:30 p.m.
September 11 is the 100 Motorcars of Radnor. It's always a wonderful show. This year's featured marque is Jaguar. Please contact me if you have an interesting Jaguar that you would like to have invited to the show.
(See our calendar on the left
for links to more information about these events.)

A Look Through 
the Rearview Mirror

Where We've Been and
What We've Done

The Doylestown at Dusk Show was one of the hottest shows we've ever attended, and not just because of the great cars on hand. It was more than 100 degrees in the afternoon and it felt just as oppressive in the evening.
Still, it was a great show. For the second year in a row, it was held in downtown Doylestown, Bucks County. Organizers opened some additional streets in anticipation of more than 500 cars. They ended up with 420 – not bad. 
Congratulations to Lonny and Tina Hamilton, who took Best of Show for their green 1941 Ford Business Coupe. Ragtops & Roadsters owner Mike Engard chose Tom Marsaloha's 1940 LaSalle as the Pro’s Pick.

On July 31, we joined RD Enterprises as a sponsor of a car show that was part of the Lotus Blossom Festival in Earleville, Maryland. The setting, with the lotus blossoms in full bloom along the Sassafrass River, was spectacular. A nice variety of about 20 cars participated in the show.
See below for more photos and a full description of the show.

The following week (August 6) my Triumph Italia 2000 was among 130 cars to attend the 6th Annual Hemmings Sports & Exotic Car Show at the Saratoga Automobile Museum in upstate New York.
Featured classes included Fiat, in recognition of the automaker's return to the United States; the cars of Donald Healey (Austin and Jensen); the Mercedes-Benz SL-class in honor of the automaker's 125th birthday, and late model exotic cars from 1986 to the present day.

Toyota Supra
I was pleased to see one of our customers at the Hemmings Sports & Exotic show: Gib Battisti and his 1984 Toyota Supra.

This stunning RHD Triumph Dove'
was just imported to the states.

Lotuses Invade Maryland Blossoms

By Joe Marchione

On July 30, a diverse group of vintage and current Lotus cars and their owners from five states converged on the Mt. Harmon Plantation in Earleville, Maryland for the Second Annual Lotus Blossom Festival.
Mt. Harmon is in the northern part of Maryland on one of the fingers of land that jut out into the creeks. In addition to having a history as a tobacco plantation dating back to seventeenth and eighteenth centuries, it has the distinction of hosting a cove of American Lotus blossoms that bloom in late July. 

Photo Gallery

Beginning last year, Mt. Harmon began an event featuring weavers, potters, artisans, a blue grass band, a tour of the Plantation house and, of course, their Lotus blossoms. 

My wife Pat and I were showing our 1959 Lotus Elite at the Oakbourne Mansion Car Show in Pennsylvania when John and Phyllis Gossin asked if we would consider bringing our Elite to Mt. Harmon's first festival.  John is a member of the Delaware Valley Triumph Club and also a member of the Mt. Harmon Historical Society.  

When planning their event, he had told them: "You know, there is a "Lotus" car and maybe I could find one for your show."  We jumped at the opportunity to attend. How much more perfect could it get...Lotus blossoms and Lotus cars? 

Last year, the time was too short for us to invite other Lotus owners so it was our Elite and another Elite brought to Earleville by Clark and Pam Lance.  We had such a good time it seemed a great opportunity to rally the Lotus troops this year for our first "LIMB"…Lotuses Invade Maryland Blossoms. 

We just had "LOG" 30 up the road in Gettysburg, so why not another chance for a branch (get it?) event for us Northeasterners? I made plans with the Mt. Harmon folks to have an area set aside for our cars and organized the event with commitments from PALS (Philadelphia Area Lotus Society) and the DC Lotus Ltd. chapter. 

With the help of Dave Hutchison, of Ragtops & Roadsters, we were able to arrange trophy and printing sponsorship from Ragtops and RD Enterprises Ltd., a supplier of Lotus parts in Quakertown, Pennsylvania. My goal was to have at least 20 Lotus cars at the show, hopefully attracting a variety of types representing the history of the marque.  

We were so lucky to exceed that goal with Lotuses from 1956 to the present, including: 
  • An historic 1956 Lotus 6, the very last Type 6 built, owned by Kyle and Irena Kaulback;
  • The 1959 Elite S1 owned by Pat and I;
  • A beautiful 1962 two-tone Elite S2 owned by Kevin McGovern.
Moving on through Lotus production there were Elans, Europas, an Eclat, Esprits and Elises Lotuses.  One of the stars of the show, at least from a kid’s point of view, had to be Dave Hutchison's Lotus 1966 Indy pedal car. Not exactly a trailer queen, I'm told.  

The show was such a success that we have already started plans for next year's event (LIMB 2). This time we would like to reach out to the other Lotus owners to join us (hear that LOONY?). We are considering a show on Saturday, a dinner that night at a local inn and a scenic run on Sunday.  More details when they are available. 

I am so grateful to Paige Howard, Debbie Brown and the Mt. Harmon Historical Society for allowing us to join their festival. You can check out the Mt. Harmon website site and see more pictures of the Lotus cars on the PALS website.

Joe Marchione
Joe Marchione congratulates Kevin McGovern
for winning his class with his beautiful Elite.

How to Make That Hot Little British Coupe' Really Cool

By Dave Hutchison
As our long summer wears on -- I believe we are now in the middle of our sixth heat wave – we face yet another stretch of days with temperatures above 90 degrees with high humidity.  

Under those harsh circumstances, many vintage car ethusiasts find themselves choosing comfort over driving pleasure, leaving their rides in the garage from early June to early September and, therefore, missing a good part of the driving season. 
Here at Ragtops & Roadsters, we have seen an increase in our clients’ interest in air conditioning.  We have been successful in finding original parts for AC systems that were either installed in the factory or at the dealership when the cars came stateside.  When we make the repairs and revive these older systems they leave something to be desired....COLD AIR.

 Sure, they do work but air conditioning technology has come a long way since the 60s and 70s.  
A San Antonio company has cornered the market for modern AC systems that can be installed in classic cars.  Vintage Air has become a market leader having been in business for 35 years.  We have installed several of their systems and find the kits well engineered and easy to adapt to our British cars.
The most recent system we installed was in a 1974 Jensen GT.  Madera Concepts worked with us modify a walnut dash fascia to incorporate one of the anodized control panels that go very well with the 70s-style switches and instrumentation.

Using the state-of-the-art Sanden compressor, the Universal Gen II Mini will compete with the best of today's automotive AC. The electronic controls, with several different styles of control panels, blend in very well and the design and execution of the entire bolt-in system can't be beat.

I know it’s fun to show up at a car show with an original AC system that will offer something cooler than the outside air. I suppose you could get points added to your judge’s sheet for that.  If you want to be "really cool,” though, a Vintage Air system might be the best choice.
For more information go to the Vintage Air website
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