A collection of NASCAR, and NHRA race used equipment, including parts and sheet metal.
A collection of NASCAR, and NHRA race used equipment, including parts and sheet metal.
You know me for driver suits, but i also collect other things besides suits. Aside from helmets and other uniform items, i also collect other race-used items from the cars. Racing is half man half machine, and items from the machine make unique collectibles as well.
One of the most obvious things is sheet metal. Stock cars consist of a roll cage which contains the engine, suspension, and driver compartment. Covering that is what is called “sheet metal” which is a thin metal that has the shape of the car and where the paint scheme is added. The cars are “skinned” after each race. The sheet metal from cars has become a huge collectors market. Pieces can be as small as 1 inch squared, such as this Carl Edwards piece, or huge, such as this Sterling Marlin door.
Tires are also popular to collect as well. Tires can be purchased whole, but since they can weigh as much as 90 pounds, they are often cut up and the pieces are sold, like sheet metal. This example, used by Kevin Harvick in the 2002 Daytona 500 is an example. it gives a good example of the thickness of the tire, and the cords are visible as well. This Kyle Petty/John Andretti card has two small pieces of tire, each used by the respective driver in the card. These are popular, and everything from suits to caps, to sheet metal wind up in cards.
Race-used lug nuts go hand in hand with tires. Lug nuts are used once, and then sold after the race, such as these Tony Stewart examples. Lug nuts are Super glued to the rim, and one of these still has superglue residue on it.
Mechanical components, especially engine components are interesting to collect, as there is no better representation of man and machine than a part of the heart of the machine. For example, I have a brake rotor used by John Andretti in the 1998 Bank of America 500 at Charlotte, which has been signed by Richard Petty. This is a set released after Jimmie Johnson won his first sprint cup title back in 2006. It contains a series of pieces used by Johnson, including a piece of sheet metal from his door,
I discussed this pit board from Chad McCumbee earlier in the year
Jamie McMurray #1 Cessna Chevy SS Black with silver numbers and white trim looks simple and really good. I can’t say anything bad about this scheme, and bonus points for improving the door number design. A+
Jamie McMurray #1 McDonald’s Chevy SS Same great design as last year, same A grade.
Austin Dillon #3 Dow Chevy SS Take the white stripe down the side off, and it will be a solid A scheme. The white does not look good at all. The red/white/black color scheme works very well, and it is decently designed, so I will give it a B+
Danica Patrick #10 Go Daddy Chevy SS Not only does Go Daddy continue to use the worst shade of yellow in NASCAR, they also have given the worst shade of orange a more prominent role in the car. Givng this car an F is a very fair grade.
Denny Hamlin #11 FedEx Ground Toyota Camry Same scheme as last year, same C+ grade
Denny Hamlin #11 FedEx Freight Toyota Camry Same scheme as last year, same C+ grade
Denny Hamlin #11 FedEx Office Toyota Camry Same scheme as last year, same C+ grade
Denny Hamlin #11 FedEx Express Toyota Camry Same scheme as last year, same C+ grade
Casey Mears #13 Geico Ford Fusion The yellow they use is awful, and the side design is just too lowd, Ricky Stenhouse Jr. NOS Ford Fusion I love this color scheme, however, I don’t love the side design. It has too many different different designs, all of which would work on their own but combined they look like a jumbled mess. I really want to like this scheme, but I just can’t, so I’ll give it a C-
Clint Bowyer #15 5 Hour Energy Toyota Camry Same scheme as last year, same B+ grade.
Kyle Busch #18 M&M’s Toyota Camry Same scheme as last year, same A+ grade.
Kurt Busch #41 Haas CNC Chevy SS Great color scheme and a very simple desgin look very good here. I also like the matte black used, and the door numbers look really solid. Can’t give this scheme anything less than an A
Dale Earnhardt Jr. #88 Diet Mountain Dew Chevy SS Same scheme as last year, but I never gave it a grade. So here is my analysis Not a great scheme, too much needless design on the side of the car, and the silver background is just brutal. The red lettering on a green background is unattractive at best, and all in all, this is a D- grade.
Carl Edwards #99 Aflac Ford Fusion This has a terrible color scheme, with lime green, neon blue, black and white. The wing design is not only ugly but would work better starting at the door and working behind.
I discuss the various aspects of race-worn and race used collectibles on this blog, and in researching something, I had received a suggestion that sounded like a great idea. The idea that was posed was “You may want to mention where people can actually buy these suits as well.” So I think I will.
The most obvious place to purchase race-worn and race-used items is eBay. Now this is not as simple as it might sound. In the Sports Memorabilia, Cards and Fan Shop section, entering the term “Suit”is a good place to start. Entering the term “driver” can be a mixed bag, and the term “firesuit” as well as “driver suit” work well. If that is not to your liking, search “driver suit” firesuit” “driver firesuit” “NASCAR uniform” “racing uniform” or “driver uniform” in the Any Categories setting.
Another, less likely place on eBay is the Safety Equipment section on eBay motors. Reason being that not all race-worn driver suits end up in collections, many of them are recycled and sold to racers who need a quality firesuit but do not have the resources to spend the thousands needed for a customized one. In fact, many auctions that are geared towards collectors also mention the size in case the suit is bought by a racer.
I have a couple of sellers that I buy from on a regular basis. One of my favorites is Just For Fun Collectibles. They have an amazing selection, and some of the best prices for stuff I have ever seen. I have bought a lot from them, and I always enjoy buying from them. The other seller I buy from regularly is Race Image. Both are based in North Carolina, and Race Image buys regularly from race teams, and resells the items both on their site and on eBay. Like Just For Fun, I have bought a lot from them, and I always enjoy buying from them. Raceusedrescued is another great seller, who has a whole lot of NASCAR stuff.
Using legitimate auction sites can be iffy, not as many people are into race-worn and race-used memorabilia, as are into baseball, or football. But one place that regularly sells race-worn material is Paragon Auctions. They have had a lot of race-worn driver suits for sale in their auctions. Other groups, such as Heritage Auctions and American Memorabilia both have had a lot of suits sell through their auctions.
But with all the places to buy items, doing the research before you buy is critical. That is why I started The Driver Suit Blog, to give collectors the resources and information that they need to do the hobby, and do it right. I’m not someone who just buys these because they look nice, throw them in a closet, and never think about them. I look at them, admire them, and I understand how much work went into designing them. I love this hobby, and I fully support it, and I want to help collectors advance in this hobby in any way I can. That is why I put the time and effort I do into this blog.
Next week, I will announce the 2013 Driver Suit Blog Paint Schemie Awards. The Schemies are a series of awards given out for paint schemes in the Sprint Cup series. For every category, there are two awards given, First and Worst. First awards are given to the best schemes of the year, and worst…well that is pretty self-explanatory, isn’t it?
I took my chili recipe I previously mentioned, and changed the recipe slightly.
You will need:
2 pounds beef chorizo sausage
1 onions, chopped
1 (7 ounce) can diced tomatoes-drained
1 (7 ounce) cans smoked chipotle salsa
1 (12 ounce) can kidney beans-drained
1 cup water
Chili powder and garlic powder to taste
In a large saucepan over medium heat, combine the chorizo and onion and saute until meat is browned and onion is tender. Add the diced tomatoes, smoked chipotle salsa,beans and water.
Season with the chili powder, and garlic powder to taste. Bring to a boil, reduce heat to low, cover and let simmer for 15 minutes.
First we start with 2014 schemes…
Marcos Ambrose #9 Twisted Tea Ford Fusion A good color scheme is in play here. I like the shades of yellow, green and blue used here. The overall design works well with the color scheme, and I will give it an A.
Now on to 2013 schemes…
Jamie McMurray #1 Lexar Chevy SS Decent color scheme, and if you get rid of the flash drives at the bottom, it would be an A scheme. This scheme is good, and earns a B+
Dave Blaney #7 Ultra Wheels Chevy SS This is the first time that this car actually looks good…provided you get rid of that door number. B+
Clint Bowyer #15 5-Hour Energy Sour Apple Toyota Camry Another example of why camouflage does NOT work on race cars. What does camouflage have to do with sour apples? This scheme does not work, and it gets an F
Greg Biffle #16 Scotch Ford Fusion Eww…the green design clashes with the red, and the plaid design is atrocious. F
Ricky Stenhouse Jr. #17 RFR Driven Chevy SS Ricky has run a lot of great schemes this year, and this scheme is not an exception. Great color and simple design earns this scheme an A.
Ryan Newman #39 Quicken Loans-Salute to Veterans Day Chevy SS This scheme is a bit more complex in the grade that I gave it, and requires some explanation. This scheme features pictures of United States Military Veterans on the side as a tribute to them. They have earned a place on the car, and have earned the respect as a nation, and an A+++ grade.
Landon Cassill #40 Pirate Oilfield Chevy SS Looks good, great color scheme, simple design, A+
Juan Pablo Montoya #42 Target Camouflage Chevy SS Camo just doesn’t work for race cars, an this is no exception. While they did try to keep the red, it just looks awful, and I’ll give it an F
Bobby Labonte #47 Wounded Warrior Project Toyota Camry Camo doesn’t ever look good on a race car, and this is another example. It looks better than this though…
Kyle Larson #51 Visit Dallas Chevy SS I love color scheme, and I love the skyline on the hood. I’m disappointed that the skyline isn’t on the side of the car, it would look good on the door, but it is still a solid A scheme.
Dale Earnhardt Jr. National Guard Breast Cancer Awareness Chevy SS Pinkwashing is an automatic F grade.
Dale Earnhardt Jr. Amp Gold Chevy SS Not a bad color scheme, though the dot design does not look good at all. I’ll be generous and give it a B-