I made a promise to my mom when I was 16 that I would take care of her car as I got older. It wasn't the nicest car to ever grace the road but I held an affinity for it that ran deeply. For me it was filled with memories of my childhood and I knew mom held onto it, when other cars in our family came and went, specifically to give it to me the day I graduated high school.
High school graduation came and I received a small box. Sure as day, inside was a car key. It was dulled and the automaker's logo was worn down, but it was beautiful.
Originally built in late 1971, the 1972 Super Beetle (which we called "The Volkswagen," original, I know!) was part of our family as long as I could remember. And I wanted to keep it that way. Getting that car key at 18 was the first step. Restoring it would be another step altogether.
Sometime in 1997 the Volkswagen finally stopped turning on. With a little persuasion, it could be coaxed to life, but it became more and more of a hassle. By the time I graduated it had sat for a couple of years. And as I went to college and started a family (all things that didn't help with funding any sort of auto-restoration project), I became increasingly worried that I would fail my promise and the Volkswagen would rot away. Steps were made to take care of it, but without serious attention -- of the financial kind -- it would eventually fall apart. That time is drawing close at hand.
In comes Kickstarter. A saving grace, perhaps. The "starving artist" may be able to live up to his promise just yet; all without putting his wife and daughters in the poor-house!
Are you planning on selling the car once it's restored? Absolutely not! My real goal is to share it with as many people as possible. I want to walk a fine line between keeping it restored and actually using it by driving to work in it on occasion or taking my kids on family trips. Eventually I plan to give the car to one of my kids, just as it was given to me.
Are you going to use it to enter shows to make money for yourself? No, I just want to restore it. I may go to shows from time to time, but it will be specifically when traveling with a local club or a group of friends. If I do win any sort of monetary award, I promise here and now to take all of that money and spend it on Kickstarter projects running at the time.
If I donate, will you let me check out the car in real life or even take a ride in it? Absolutely, assuming you're not wielding some sort of knife or have a crazy look in your eye. I'd be proud to show it to any donator, no matter the donation amount.
If funded, when will the work begin?
It's already begun! But I'm in a position now where I'll need additional funding to continue. I've got a small bumper-sticker venture that's bringing in a few dollars here and there. If this project succeeds, I will begin work on the car immediately. My first priority will be in getting my donators taken care of while I rework my budget plan on the car. Ultimately I would like to have the car completely restored by November, 2012 (40 years after its purchase).
I'll be posting updates as I go here and over at the blog, but donators here will get special updates both while the funding runs and after it completes.
If you would like to follow the "official" blog, you can find it at:
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- (88 days)