Letters Issue 8

Dear SM,
Reading your What’s Old piece in December’s Street Machine reminds me of the Volvo estate car my son Marc built for drifting. He had to chop so much metal out of it to make it lighter – over-engineered comes to mind – then fitted a BMW V8 engine. It went like stink with the original axle in it, so that must be strong. These axles are used for drag racing sometimes – they’re built like a brick sh**house. My wife had one years ago; an automatic that went on and on for years. Thanks for a great mag, and we love your articles – your way with words just makes me laugh. Keep up the good work.
Brian Huxley, via email


Dear SM,
In the late Seventies, I stopped playing at rallying, and was introduced to the hot rod and American motoring scene by being invited to the ‘tea wagon’ meet on a Thursday night, outside the derelict Snow Hill Station in Birmingham. Cars would gather from around 10pm, and the meet would often carry on into the early hours. It was a fairly unofficial gathering, but eventually someone decided on a name and Brum Street Freaks was born!

We continued to gather at the tea wagon, sometimes going for late night cruises and very occasionally some, ahem, drag racing, complete with starting tree lights someone constructed… Never on a very quiet countryside dual carriageway, of course! We attended shows and meets, and in fact we were at the second NSRA Billing Fun Run. The gate sticker is still around somewhere. We even traveled to Swansea for a hot rod show at the Ford plant.

At some point it was decided that ‘Brum Street Freaks’ wasn’t respectable enough, so Mid-England Roadsters was born, and the club grew stronger. Around this time, my own car, ‘The Flying Brick’, was written off on my way home from work, then I got married, and lost touch with folks. Since then, I got back into the scene and old names keep cropping up, proving the love of our motors never dies!

The photo is my original 40-year-old Brum Street Freaks t-shirt, which appears to have shrunk in the wardrobe…
Chris Richards, via Facebook

There appears to be an epidemic of clothes shrinking in the wardrobe. It seems to have got worse since Christmas, too… Thanks for the photos, Chris. Does anyone else remember Brum Street Freaks? Or do you still have any club clobber from years ago, whether the club’s still around or not? Send us a photo; let’s see if we can give some old memories a nudge! DS, SM

SM On Tour
How far around the world has the re-launched Street Machine reached? In what sort of odd places might a copy crop up? Throw us a photo, and you might win a prize! Send it to
Our first entry is from Simon Boot, introducing the greasy ramblings of a British modified motoring mag to the heavenly beaches of Mauritius. Simon doesn’t win a prize, of course – he’s basking on a beach in paradise while we’re all freezing our sodding conkers off in Blighty, so I figure he’s had reward enough. Not that I’m jealous or anything…