This may sound simple, but a key part of maintenance is attention to detail. All vehicles are delicate machines and require consistent, quality maintenance. I often drive my creations on special tours with other hot rod owners, and I find it useful-especially when prepping for a lengthy road trip-to check and evaluate every single knob and valve; literally starting from one end of the car to the other.
Do yourself a favor and sweat the small stuff. This may seem like overkill, but trust me, you'd rather make the quick fix at home than be stranded on the side of the road. Sometimes you'll need to grease the suspension or change a wiper blade, but at the end of the day, you won't skip a beat when you're out on the road enjoying your car.
Quality All Around
My guiding philosophy is to build (and help others build) the finest-looking and best-driving "rods" of our time. To live up to these standards, I always use quality parts and car care products and work with quality vendors-no exceptions.
Now don't get me wrong...quality doesn't necessarily mean more expensive. It simply means you should understand your vehicle and use the proper parts and resources to get the job done right. It's important to remember that over the course of a car's lifetime, a lot of the little decisions you make will add up in the end. You may regret settling for a part or product that was just lying around the garage.
The issue of quality even comes into play when considering the type of fuel you use. Some hot rods have engines that will benefit from higher-octane fuel, but all engines will benefit from a fuel with added cleaning power. Low-quality gasolines can allow carbon deposits to build on intake valves and fuel injectors, which can steal power and performance away from your engine. But a fuel such as Shell V-Power, for instance, can clean your engine as you drive and help reverse the effects of carbon deposit build-up.
Whether you're into hot rods-often defined by their loud style and even louder performance-or decked-out street rods with the latest in luxury accessories, always remember that cars are built for driving. What's most important is improving the performance and reliability of your vehicle, regardless of its make, model or style.
I recommend keeping your mind open to new ideas, your ears open for new products and your eyes focused on the tech articles in today's leading automotive publications. You're bound to come across something you've never thought of that could help elevate the performance of your everyday vehicle or your customized classic.
For two generations and nearly half a century, the Brizio name has been synonymous with quality hot rods and street rods. Roy Brizio creations have won numerous awards, including a 1st-place showing at the Pebble Beach Concours d'Elegance for a 1936 Ford Coupe and a Ford Motor Company award for outstanding achievement in design for a 1940 Ford Coupe. In addition, Roy's shop has built a number of other notable vehicles, including Oakland Roadster Show winners, Hot Rod magazine's 50th Anniversary celebration "T" roadster, and vehicles for top celebrities including Eric Clapton and Reggie Jackson. For more on Brizio, visit www.roybriziostreetrods.com. Roy Brizio is a spokesperson for Shell Oil Products U.S. Provided by Shell Oil Products U.S.