Thursday, December 24, 2015


Happy Holidays to all you little rat finks out there keeping the faith of the greasy & the rusty! Keep those wrenches spinning' and those welders Hummin' Get out in the garage and build something! FRITZ

Friday, December 18, 2015

My Knuckle frame, the Saga starts!

SO, I thought I would just cut out the boxing plates that turned out to be a 1/2 inch thick per side, clean up the inner neck area and heat the neck to back bone area and just de-rake it back to the factory 30 deg's from the chopped 35'ish Deg's it was, I've done it before and I knew in my hart it was a 50/50 chance between success and cutting the whole shebang off and starting from scratch, well the neck forging did crack and I am in the process now of machining a new neck to take the old style neck bearing cups. Just a minor set back Gang, A mere bag of shells. in the interim of doing my Dad's soft tail frame and messing with the Knuckle frame I did buy a Hobart 165 TIG welding rig. turns out Miller welding equipment bought the hobart company and as I noticed everything inside my machine including the torch and pedal, etc. is all "miller" so for a few hundred less I got top of the line I guess, Merry Christmas to me! I'm gonna include a spy shot of Dad's Pan top / Cone bottom engine we are building for the soft tail as well, just to keep you up to speed on the goings on in Fritz-land Now get out in the garage and build something!

Saturday, December 12, 2015

Dad's Softail frame & My knuckle head frame

I got Dad's frame TIG welded and done, I'm only a few bucks short on getting myself a new Miller TIG machine but in the mean time I had Dad's frame welded by a drag car chassis builder here in Kansas City. Pop wants to get cracking on a rolling moch up A.S.A.P. I'll wait till i get my new welder for my stuff. I had started working on this Knuckle frame a lot of years ago and haven't done anything with it since I moved from NY to KC. Since I had to do Dad's frame for him I figured I would make a new "DVD" on "how to fix motorcycle frame at home" and do my knuckle frame as well (I have some other frames in line also, might as well do them all and get it over with) The Knuckle frame was raked sometime in the early 70's. it was a solid job but I'd like to de-rake it back to the factory 30 degrees. I was hoping I could just cut the boxing plates out and save the factory casting but after finding out the boxing plates were 1/2 inch thick and were just not coming out no matter how hard i tried to convince them with a hammer & pry bar I just opted to fire up the blow torch and turn it all into liquid metal. I'll save as much of the original casting as I can and just make a new triangle filler plate and lower plate. keep checking back to see the progress! "Get out in the garage and build something" FRITZ

Saturday, December 5, 2015

My Dad's Softail chopper project

My Dad was board after he moved next door to me here in Missouri so I gave him what was a distraction to me but a good project for him, a pile of Harley soft ail stuff that accumulated. Actually he drug home this frame from the bike shop he worked at in NY when we lived there, can you believe someone would scrap a Harley frame? no self respecting nike guy ever shit cans Harley stuff. Well long story short Dads been working on the engine which is a cone bottom with a Pan toped and Now I have to get my assign gear and glue this frame back together so he can mock it all up. I have been filming this as I have been working on it so look for a new DVD to be coming from me around Spring on this subject, I have a few frames I am just going to do all at once so they are done and I can put my welding / frame table back in the "FAB" room. in the DVD we'll build a new neck for this soft ail frame , I have a Knuckle frame that I need to "de-rake" and an Indian frame that will get a Harley hard tail rear section and a new neck as well, and if there is enough room on the disc's Ill build a frame from scratch for a triumph engine i have. and all in the old school way, no fancy room with 60K of tools in it, you guys that have bought my DVD's know I'm a real grass roots garage guy, so keep a weathered eye on the horizon for this new DVD. I machined the neck for this frame to tack the bearing races right into the neck with out the use of neck cups like the older bikes, Dad has an FXR fork he wants to use, the back bone & down tubes are DOM tube with a .125 wall, the tubes were all slugged and will be rosette welded also. I did some neat DIY tricks that anyone can do at home but you'll have to watch the dvd to find out, "Get out in the garage and build something" FRITZ

Wednesday, November 25, 2015

Poncho Bill's 1957 Pontiac Starchief #4

Well Gang I spent a lot of time shifting and moving body panels, then re shimming and moving them around again and again till I got the body lines on the passenger side of Bill's car as close as I could get them but where the front fender would meet the rocker panel was just giving me a headache. After so many years, so many miles, and so many other people doing body work on the car long before I got there, sometimes you just gotta do what you have to do, to "Make it happen" I made a small template on an old frozen pizza box and cut a piece of 1/8th plate steel to the same contour as the rocker and welded it onto the end of the rocker panel. after a little clean up with a 3 inch roloc disc it looks pretty dang nice I think! I took a bit of time and fixed the rust and rot on the head light bucket. I had an extra from a junk yard fender I bought for the car so it became a donor to fix the bucket that came off Bill's car. Another little something I did was spent entirely to much time trying to get the head light door / bezel shimmed so it wasn't sitting right ontop of the fender, I don't want to do all the body work and painting on this car and install the head light bezel and have it "smoosh" or "mushroom" the paint, so I put the bezel on & took it off more times then I care to count and shimmed it also. there are two small thin washers welded to the top two mounting tabs and a small piece of 1/16th plate steel behind the lower tab, But It sits just right! a little added extra attention makes all the difference in the world between a real nice job and a shit box. "Get out in the garage and build something" FRITZ

Thursday, November 19, 2015

Poncho Bill's 1957 Pontiac Starchief #3

The inner rear fender housing had a bad ass line of rot that ran from the rocker all the way into the trunk, I made up a 4 foot long piece of steel on my bending brake and then used the shrinker / stretcher to get the radius right and grafted it in. lots of welding and grinding in tight places! I've been taking pics with my phone so they suck, but they are what they are. Just imagine I am laying on the floor looking up into the fender well taking some of the pics , you get the idea. I got the new outer fender well welded into place with the new seal on the edge. I was gonna fix the old outer housing extension / splash tin seeing how it a "pontiac" only piece but figured the heck with it i can just make a new one quicker, so i did. I spray can primed and painted it (rustoleum of course) and let it cure on the wood stove in my shop before i handled it, but i have it test fitted in the car with screws and vise grips, tomorrow I'll get the splash seal on and weld it in "Get out in the Garage and build something" - Fritz -----

Thursday, November 12, 2015

Ponch Bill's 1957 Pontiac Starchief #2

Somewhere along the line i lost a few pics but I posted what I have. The new inner & outer rocker Are installed, the front floor brace and frame support are installed both I had to make from scratch, Also I had to replace a section of the frame side to have a place to install the floor support. The lower quarter panel patch I cut down so I wouldn't have to disturb the original fender lip and it also lacked the lower lip that the rocker panel had to spot weld it to the lower inner rocker so I had to bend a piece of steel on my brake and weld that on as well. all in all the car is coming along great, I'm just taking my time enjoying the work and getting it done right! I did spend a bit of time reshaping the lower door corner (which meant taking the door on and off a few times) and the rocker panel & quarter panel area that meet it, Ya gotta have a nice door line all the way around! the more time you spend now will be less time you spend later. Keep checking back gang! Get out in the garage and build something! FRITZ

Thursday, November 5, 2015

"THE KING OF KUSTOMS" 11-20-1925 / 11-05-2015

A sad day in the Kustom car world today. Georg Barris the "King of Kustoms" passed away. I remember being a kid going to the slot car track on Hempsted Turnpike across from the medical center in East Meadow New York with my Dad. Pop used to build his own cars out of brass rod and stuff, this was the late 60's early 70's I loved racing slot cars. In the display case was this COX batmobile slot car, I wanted that thing in the worst way. On one of our trips to the track Dad bought me that Batmobile slot car, I think it cost him like $20.00 bucks! Dad was only making probably not much over $100 dollars a week at his job, trust me it was a big deal on many levels. I loved that car, I still have the aluminum frame from it but I play with it hard as a kid and totally trashed it. but as you are reading this now I am 51 years old and still think very fondly about the time I spent with my Dad and that freaking Awesome "Batmobile" when you were a kid of the late 60's you watched Batman on TV and just came unglued when that Car raced the 14 mile to Gothem City from Wayne Manor! About 1973 or 74 when my Dad's friend Steve Haig (*sp) came home from Vietnam the three of us went into New York City to the ISCA custom car show when they held it at Columbus Circle. there was this long elevator up to the show and right there at the top, the first car you saw entering the show was the 1966 TV Batmobile! I got to see it in real life! Thats the first time I met Ed "Big Daddy" Roth as a youngster also but thats another story. As I got older and into the Car & Chopper scene and I started to build my own crazy cars and bikes I got to meet George at shows and spend some time with him, Detroit, Chicago, Tulsa, Salina. He truly was the King of Kustom Cars! He influenced many young people and many generations of them. Many people make a living and enjoy the automotive field because of some sort of influence from The King! be it plastic Model car kits, Tv shows, car shows, slot cars. He will truly Be missed and there will never be another like him, there is just not enough space here on this blog to talk about all the things he's done! and the cars that He and his Brother Sam have built! You had a Fantastic run George, -----------Long Live the King ---------------------