By the time this is written you’ll probably have seen at least half a dozen posts and pictures from Radwood 2, the 80-90’s cars only car show, nevertheless, I’ll throw my hat into the ring! I had actually missed the first Radwood show earlier in the year which made me super upset, but that made me determined not to miss the second one despite being 300 miles away. If there was ever a show the ol SAAB would ever be appreciated at, it was Radwood. So lets start there; car show prep!
Our SAAB, affectionately known as “Tim”, is not a trailer queen, or a purpose built show car, he’s simply part of a terrible addiction known as Gearheadism, sub genre SAAB. He’s part of a 3 car stable included 2 OTHER Saabs which all sleep outside 5 blocks away from the Pacific Ocean. He’s got bumps and bruises and imperfections which add character, showing he isn’t perfect.
However, all that living outside comes with a price.
About 3 weeks before Radwood, someone hit the SAAB into my housemate’s car.
I was pissed.
Before Radwood we were scheduled to drop off our cars at the SF International Auto Show.
This was a real bummer.
With the 6 days until the SF Auto Show we made it. I was able to get some replacement front end pieces but rolled into the show with side swipe damage. Ger Lewis, the housemate (and co-president of this website), was actually able to take home best Lexus at the show despite his cracked bumper!
2 days after we got our cars back from the week long SF Auto Show, the real prep work began. I had our good friend Josh, owner of Final Stage Mobile Detailing, perform a much needed stage 3 paint correction on the almost 30 year old Saab.
Josh is a damn magician, I swear. The scuffs from the sideswipe looked so bad I didn’t think the detail would completely eliminate the marks. In fact, the body shops had quoted me over $1,000 just to fix the paint.
There was more damage on this panel, unfortunately I don’t have any before photos, but trust me; there was a some DEEP scratches.
Again, Josh is a magician, so here’s a vlog episode we did of him detailing our other cars. Feel free to give it a view later as well as check out some of our other content.
Alright, moving along! More Radwood 2 Prep!
No 80’s car is complete without louvers! This was an add on I had desperately wanted on the 900 since I bought it a year ago. I had been searching on craigslist for a set of louvers for sale for a long time, and for Radwood I was ready to borrow a set of louvers to rock at the show.
Mercifully, I hit a stroke of luck days before the show through cold calling a local craigslist add. The seller only had a front 3/4 shot of his ’85 900 Turbo that hadn’t run in 10 years. It was $300 for the whole car. Addicted me wanted the whole damn car, but rational me got the reigns for once and said to just inquire about louvers. It was a shot in the dark, but to my surprise the seller responded saying his car did have louvers! After a little back and forth texting I was on my way, making the hour drive to pick up the precious louvers.
That night, at around midnight, I had them freshly repainted; I was that excited about them.
Another project I tried to attempt days before the show was redoing my headliner…
What a pain in the ass that was. I’ll be honest, it didn’t come out 100% how I would have liked it. However, it wasn’t terrible for a first attempt at something I had never done before.
The entire week before the show I had been running errands and preparing the 900. Then I get this email. Talk about lighting a fire under your ass. A small part of me later started to think that everyone who paid the little extra for Radwood Royalty admission had gotten this email, little did I know, this was not the case.
We were ready, Tim was ready. He was ready to make all his other defunct Swedes proud.
Friday, December 1st, 3:40 AM Pacifica, CA we set off on our journey. Would you believe me if I told you were were just finishing installing the C-pillar trims on the car about an hour prior to this photo? Talk about last minute prep!
What I also I didn’t realize was how much the impact from the accident a couple weeks ago had dented my rear fender. I was rubbing tire almost the entire drive to SoCal -_____-
The day before the show I needed to burn gas due to the 1/4 tank indoors rule. What better way to do that then visiting the legendary Mooneyes for the first time.
Show day has finally arrived and I am amped! On the way over we spot this gorgeous Audi 5000 Diesel, turns out they were headed to Radwood too!
Pulling into Radwod I was almost immediately blessed by the presence of one my all time favorite cars. I knew this was going to be an epic show.
Little mid-story disclaimer here: I apologize for the crap-tastic quality of all the photos and lack of photos. I had never planned on covering the event, just showing my car and enjoying the time I was going to have. However, it was such a great experience and event that I felt the strong need to share my experience with everyone. I hope you guys are inspired to do your best to make it to the next Radwood!
We roll into the show and are directed to the “Royalty” parking area. I spot a snazzily dressed man in period correct garb with a name tag and proceed to sheepishly ask him, “What if I got an email about parking in a tent or something?”. Fully expecting there to be just some large tent with a ton of cars in it. That was not the case, it was a really exclusive space with maybe a dozen high caliber cars, I felt unworthy. Vendor cars, God’s Chariot(s), Ferraris, a movie car and then there was little old Tim with his bumps, bruises, and many imperfections. All I could think was, holy shit, what an honor, I cannot believe it. There were so many other cars that I thought were cooler than ours.
Squeaky clean Fiteen52 cars.
HRE brought a Ferrari…
Michael Slevin with his freshly Jagermeister liveried E36, which ended up winning best of show.
Mike from Stanceworks…needs no introduction.
These were just some of the cars in the tent. Again, I took pics of just some of my favorite cars, I had no intention of reporting on the event.
Right across from us, the guys from Wheeler Dealer…no big deal *internal fan-girling intensifies*
Not only was there 1 Ford Escort RS Cosworth, there were 2. *mouth salivates*
Oh and Renault R5 Turbo, NO BIG DEAL. (Pretty sure I had died and gone to car heaven)
Things regular car people can’t seem to understand: How freaking awesome Mitsubishi Delicas are!
This was wild, and not it wasn’t because of the vinyl wrap.
This FC RX-7 ditched its rotary for batteries…
AND A FLIPPIN TURBINE
Just when you thought rotary engines made one of the coolest sounds, this guy
turned on his car fired up his jet engine. As soon as he did that, a mass of people flocked to his car. Truly a sight to behold.
Clarion was another sponsor of the event and brought out 2 of their “Clarion Builds”. One car was this pristine Acura Legend, another was an 8 series BMW.
Mazda USA brought some awesome cars as well, such as this NA Miata Coupe. Which was such a sight to behold, so much so, that I completely neglected to get photos of the Eunos Cosmos they also brought.
This Speedster was just chillin by the restrooms.
There were so many 911’s, I don’t think I had seen so many before. They were like skittles scattered about the lot. This isn’t event half of them.
I was the ONLY Saab there but there were 4 Peugeots, what are the odds?! Only at Radwood my friends, only at Radwood.
There were also a ton of old mercs, which I have an absolute soft spot for. Here is “NOTA JDM” on some very USDM Corvette “Sawblade” wheels.
Very clean 190e 2.3-16 on OZ Superleggeras (or maybe they’re ultraleggeras)
BBS RS’ you can never go wrong.
OZ Futuras, the want is strong.
Can’t forget my JDM peeps!
RIP Paul Walker.
Blitz 03s? yes, please!
Again, I can’t stress this enough, there were so many magnificent cars I did not get photos of that really deserve some spot light. I highly encourage you guys to look at other Radwood posts if you have time!
There were also a lot of E30 M3s in attendance, I think I counted 5.
Only one of these beasts though! What a machine!
Of course there were many BMWs showing, I wish I grabbed photos of more.
Weirdly the west coast does not have a large VW presence at shows. Radwood was no exception, I guarantee you, if there is a Radwood east, it will have quadruple the number of VWs there.
There were a fair amount of Volvos as well, but this one really caught my eye.
A lot of cars had awesome stickers, but I think this was my favorite.
The awards were the coolest car show awards I’ve ever seen.
Matt Farah kicked off the awards ceremony. I had seen his amazing cars but this was the first time I had seen him all day!
Unfortunately, that’s all I’ve got folks. My phone died shortly snapping that picture of Matt.
We made it back safe and sound to the Bay Area, although we lost a side panel extension, which can be seen missing from the behind the front wheel. I want to extend my sincerest thank you to everyone who put on the event, especially the guys behind Driving While Awesome and Jalopnik who organized and ran the event.
Another big thank you to everyone who shared kind words about the 900 and took photos of it. It was very inspiring to learn how many people actually really liked the build. I’ll definitely be bringing Tim to the next Radwood and I hope to see you all there!
For those of you more curious about me or this website, here are some social media feeds.
Youtube channel HERE (we don’t have enough subs for custom URL yet, please subscribe!)
Little bonus: a Transformation pic of Tim