34th Annual Association Of Handcrafted Automobiles Show @ The Pomona Fairplex

34th annual association of handcrafted automobiles show the pomona fairplex

With the rising cost and generally limited choice available to those motoring enthusiasts out there—and we know that the spirit is alive and well, in spite of (and because of) recent economic developments—events featuring alternative ways of expressing such enthusiasm are certainly newsworthy.

Not to be confused with any other event featuring so-called “custom”, “experimental”, “historic”, “restored” or “vintage” vehicles, the A.H.A. Show often features all of these elements—as they fit into the “handcrafted” framework. You might see anything from one-off ground-up custom fabricated units with inspiration from any particular era past, present, or future, to assembled kits based on similar inspiration. The kit vehicles may range from cleverly devised “rebody” component kits (applied to commonly available, mass produced autos) to virtually spec-built replicas of classic rides—now considered to be very rare, expensive “museum pieces”.

What was once, in truth, a “hobby”, has been transformed to something well beyond that; now that computerized imaging and related manufacturing technologies are the order of the day.

Very good news for auto enthusiasts, indeed!

At one point, before the U.S. “economic meltdown”, the A.H.A. Show was held in connection with some related automotive events in a rather large parking lot opposite the famed Knott’s Berry Farm amusement park, Buena Park, CA. Most of the major players in the business would be in attendance, toting large trailers used to display their wares.

While these vendors are still operational, the change in venues has severely limited their space to operate at the show—held in a much smaller parking lot in front of the N.H.R.A. Museum—so many of them passed on attendance at this year’s show. That is somewhat of a shame, considering the aforementioned level of automobile enthusiasm extant—and the potential marketing opportunities this sort of an event can generate.

Still, this year’s show had some noteworthy standouts—including many non-commercial examples entered by private individuals. The accompanying photos—with purposely sparse textual commentary—will give our readers some idea of what the show is all about, and why they should attend next year, if they didn’t make it this past April 13th.

Readers should feel free to post questions or comments; and I will do my best to address them with mine.

Phil has written features and columns for a number of automotive periodicals (See “BODACIOUS BEATERS and road-going derelicts” on this ttac site) and web-based information companies. He has run a successful Auto Repair Business in the past for many years (See “Memoirs of an Independent Repair Shop Owner” on this ttac site). He can be contacted through this very site, or http://www.linkedin.com/

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2 of 11 comments
  • Cargogh Cargogh on Apr 29, 2013

    Those photos were very nice, Phil.

  • Phil Coconis Phil Coconis on May 01, 2013

    Regarding the choice of motivation for the CXV: They are working on a modest redesign that will accept late-model Gold Wing componentry. Two more cylinders, a reverse gear (a big deal on motorcycle-powered kits), and improved parts availability will be the benefits. Who could ask for more?

  • Dukeisduke That charging station in the picture looks like it's nailed to the back of an old utility pole and weather beaten chest of drawers. Lol, WTH?
  • Dukeisduke Corey, do you have links for some of those ads? I'd like to be able to zoom in on them.
  • Dukeisduke A free Model T Touring Car? Heck, I'd take one of those, even today. The ABC radio news ad has a few names I recognize - columnist Walter Winchell (he later narrated TV's "The Untouchables"), Drew Pearson, who was an accomplished journalist and writer, Dorothy Kilgallen, a columnist who later appeared on game shows in the '50s, like "What's My Line?", and Hollywood gossip columnist Louella Parsons.
  • Dukeisduke The Hornet got plenty of hate on Instagram when Dodge announced it the other day, mainly from people who want Dodge to build nothing but Hemi-powered vehicles, in perpetuity.
  • JMII Nobody in the US was going to buy the more expensive Alfa version anyway. Google tells me Alfa has less then 180 dealers in the US vs Dodge that has over 2,400. And nobody cares how it drives or the quality either, as mentioned its a me-too CUV that apparently the world can't get enough of.