Some of you may recall an editorial I did last year (April '08, to be exact) asking, "Are We Going About This The Right Way?" Well, it should go without saying that a vast number of readers voiced their opinions-so much so, in fact, it would have taken a herculean task and the better part of an entire issue just to relay all the replies in print. For the most part, you gave us the thumb's up, and as would be expected, interjected various things you'd like to see more or less of. I'd be remiss if I said there wasn't any negativity, but when weighed against the positive, that type of response was quite the minority, thankfully.
However, just the other day, I received a hand-written letter (seven pages) that doesn't really fit in either category, but nonetheless, brought up various points worth pondering. Now, while I'm far from being so arthritically challenged that I can't key in a letter of manually written origin, I do have my limits, and seven pages-in cursive, no less-is a bit beyond them. Hopefully that won't be taken offensively by the draftee of the letter, but if so, maybe the solace of being the one and only response to receive a reply will help. (For various reasons, I chose to leave the reader's name out.)
First and foremost, the pure and simple fact that a magazine devoted solely to classic trucks even exists was the first item to be addressed, and thus, is something I don't believe anyone can argue with. As the letter continued-in the utmost polite manner, I must add-it became obvious where the reader was coming from, and while CLASSIC TRUCKS does cater to the "purists" to a certain degree, it's but one of the magazine's main points of interest. In contrast to many restorers I've met over the years, this individual does see the advantage of modern updates to antiquated mechanicals (namely brakes and transmission...with the exception of automatics), but beyond that, does not agree with any real modifications whatsoever, especially when it comes to suspension.
Negative opinions expressed toward the typical "slammed" pickup you might find featured and/or as a topic of a tech story are not uncommon, and I do see where the people expressing them are coming from-I may not agree, but that's just my opinion. In this case, as an option to fully modernizing a classic with late-model technology (IFS, fuel injection, overdrive, etc.), it was suggested that instead, one should consider buying a new truck that already comes equipped as such. To that degree, I fully disagree. With the exception of re-bodying a newer vehicle to resemble an older one simply in exterior appearance, if a vintage car/truck looks pretty much the way it did originally, I don't quite care what's beneath the sheetmetal. As long as it's done in a proper and safe manner, if you gut and integrate the mechanical workings from a brand-new Silverado or F-100 into '30s-'60s truck, in my mind, you've still got a '30s-60s truck-it's just been upgraded to fullest extent!
Regardless whether you agree or disagree with-or are simply indifferent to-the way I see it, the real fact of the matter is that we're one big family sharing a common interest in classic trucks. If we all liked the same thing and had nothing to complain about, I'd have nothing to ramble on about here!