Steel in Motion – Bangin Gears, Bendin’ Rods
Steel in Motion is equal parts show and go. Most hot rod people can trace their love affair back to some form of drag racing, so what better place to hold a show but at a small local drag strip, Union County Dragway in this case.
Put on by the Geargoyles car club, they set some rules for entrants to help maintain a vintage 60s experience. Only pre-70s traditional hot rods, customs, gassers and front engine dragsters were welcomed, along with choppers and bobber styled bikes. There was even a vintage bicycle show to boot.
Personally, I’m not old enough to know what it was like to roam around the dragstrips in the 60s but I’m sure it was very much like the atmosphere presented at Steel in Motion. Dirt and grass pits with tow vehicles ranging from station wagons to Greyhound buses where abundant. Participants were allowed to camp during the weekend further adding to the mix with their vintage trailers. The swap meet scene was also well represented ranging from speed parts to some pretty cool retro themed arts and crafts.
The real draw for this show is the vintage drag racing. No lights or timing, just the drop of the flag and whoever gets to the end first wins. Not only were there some pretty serious gassers and front engine dragsters but any registered vehicle was allowed to run down the track to see who was the fastest, or slowest, among their friends which allowed for some unusual matches. Nothing like the speed gap between a front engine dragster vs a forklift 4cyl-powered T-Bucket.
Steel in Motion also has some of the coolest trophies. What started out as possibly swap meet left overs have been turned into true works of art. Anything from old valve covers, flat heads and small engine covers were used along with some generous time in the paint department. They were transformed into something that would make anyone envious when compared to some plastic award you usually see handed out.
Even though this event takes place at a venue of competition, it’s just about hanging out with friends, seeing some cool cars, trucks and bikes and experiencing, or perhaps reliving, days that have come and gone.