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First car is worth having once again

Your Ride
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Editor's note: Auburn resident John E. Knierim shares his 1934 Chevrolet Master Sport Coupe in this week's Your Ride feature. When I was 15 I got my first car ” a 1934 Chevy coupe. My dad had given it to me for helping him fall and buck trees on our ranch in Oakland, Ore., in 1949. I always wanted another one. I left Oregon and moved down to Hollywood to live with my grandparents and finish school. After school I went into the Army and then went to Korea. When I returned I was married and moved to Reseda. In the newspaper in 1964 I saw a 1934 Chevy for sale for $175 and I bought it. My oldest son and I started working on it. We had the engine rebuilt and I found a guy that rebuilt the knee-action front end. Then I painted it the original color, which was antique oak with black fenders. I then striped the body in orange paint. I grained the dash and window frames; I also painted the frame. I also put the correct wire wheels on it. The last owner bought it new and during World War II had bought 600-16 wheels ” they were easier to get than 550-17 tires. That model year was the only year Chevrolet ever advertised that it had 80 horsepower and the top speed was 80 miles per hour. It sounded great, but with mechanical brakes? I had the engine rebuilt for the second time by Dick Bertolucci in the 1990s. In 1964 after I bought the car I heard about the Vintage Chevrolet Club of America, so I joined it and started going to the San Fernando Region. We toured a lot of interesting places and met a lot of nice people. In 1979 we bought a ranch in Auburn and moved here thinking we had the only vintage car in town ” we sure were wrong. We went to a Ford Model A swap meet and met Ralph Roper and his friends with all their vintage cars. We joined the Sacramento Valley Region of the Vintage Chevrolet Club of America in 1979. Driving down there meant a lot of traffic, so we got 12 people together and started an Auburn Region, which is one of the largest regions now. Our 1934 has been awarded some trophies. The largest was a first-in-class award in Santa Rosa at the 25th anniversary of the Vintage Chevrolet Club of America. The award was a sterling silver champagne bucket. Have a classic, custom or hot rod you want to share? Tell us about your vehicle in 300 to 400 words. Let us know things such as: What is it? Where and when did you get it? How much work have you done on it? And have you won any awards for it? Mail the information and a photo of the vehicle to: Gold Country Motoring, C/O Andrew DiLuccia, 1030 High Street, Auburn CA 95604, or e-mail it to andrewd@goldcountrymedia.com.