This was our 6th year as a guest at Carlisle, usually the
largest Corvette gathering anywhere,
10,000+ Corvettes on the grounds!
Wednesday, August 20
As usual, I spent the night with my parents in
Thursday, August 21
After arriving in Carlisle mid-day on
Thursday, checking in at the Ramada and
at the fairgrounds, and confirming our
excellent booth space assignment,
I spent the rest of the day scoping out
the grounds for people I wanted to see.
Mike of Lusso Wax asked if he could use my C5 as a demo.
Worked for me - and the car never looked better!
The Dale Earnheart C5R, now owned by Chip Miller.
Dick Guldstrand drove in from CA in one of his signature
Friday, August 22
Our display, fully set up.
Interesting and superbly crafted Corvette Nomad replica.
Gary caught me using the Waterblade after a brief shower on
The shower signaled a front coming through that brought welcome relief
from the intolerable steam bath that we endured Thursday & Friday.
Saturday, August 23
6:42 am: the dawn of a new day on the Carlisle
You couldn't imagine better weather for a Corvette show
than we had Saturday
This was my "Celebrity Pick" from the 2250+ Vettes
in the Fun Display:
John Battista's Pennant Blue '54. The first Vette I ever saw in the flesh
was just like this, and I got a ride in it... in 1954! I was 12. Unforgettable!
The Charity Auction, which became a benefit for
the American Cancer Society because of Sandy's efforts, this year raised
for the American Cancer
Our own fundraising section: between our
"Bullet Holes" and the '53 die-cast model
(donated by Dave
Castellano of Franklin Mint) we raised an additional
for the Harrisburg, PA office of the American Cancer Society.
Chip Miller achieved his goal of having 53 1953 Corvettes on
(Amazing when you consider that only 300 were made!)
This one needs TLC!
from the hill.
Cheryl & Taylor staff the booth.
Chief Engineer Dave Hill waits patiently while I clean off
the spot under the
that I had reserved for his autograph,
then ponders a few moments before
Plant Manager Wil Cooksey
autographs the fuel rail cover of Cheryl's '01.
in the parking lot at the Carlisle Ramada -
what are the chances of this happening? And yes,
it was totally by chance, not
(Check the plates)
(New Jersey & Ohio)
to Phase 2 of this trip <
Instead of heading home to Maine at the conclusion of Corvettes @ Carlisle
Sunday afternoon, we turned West toward Ypsilanti, MI.
That is the location of
GM Powertrain Division's Engineering Center.
For the past 4 months, I had been getting the Check Engine light from error codes in
the car's computer indicating
a slipping condition in the automatic
transmission. The condition was not noticeable in normal driving. That is, until
put it into a fail-safe mode that would actually cause the tires to
chirp shifting into second gear pulling away from a traffic light! Embarrassing!
cleared the codes, operation would be normal again until the next incident. I
asked friend Powertrain engineer (and serious Corvette guy)
Bill Nichols about
it, and gave him the codes that were reappearing. He did some research, and
determined that probably a valve was wearing.
He managed to convince the powers
that be that it would be a useful exercise for them to examine this trans with
150,000 real-world miles on it.
With Chief Engineer Dave Hill's OK, GM would replace the trans for me!
6:16 Monday morning I was in front of the Powertrain Engineering Center
The car and I were immediately directed into the shop.
Long story short: at a little past 3:00 we were back outside with a new tranny!
That's Powertrain Development Manager Dave Stark on the left
and the tech
who did the work on the right.
GM Security impounded my camera immediately upon entering
couldn't get any photos while inside the building. Bummer!
on the road to Maine.
would be Toledo!
was immediately apparent that the new trans felt more positive in its shifts. I
also quickly noticed that both the trans and engine were running about 20
degrees cooler. By the time I got home, early indications were confirmed that
the ole C5 was getting about 1 mpg better average mileage than it had for quite
awhile. Whatever was wrong in the old box must have been causing a power drag
and generating extra heat from day 1.
for the trip home from Ypsilanti to Maine.
you Bill Nichols, Dave Stark, Dave Hill and Chevrolet for making this
And this Vette has STILL, after well over 150,00 miles, never put
one drop of
any fluid on my garage floor,
other than the usual
a/c condensate. Not too
They are meant to be