failboat
failboat UltraDork
8/14/15 10:37 a.m.

Anyone else watching this?

http://www.discovery.com/tv-shows/cuban-chrome/

I guess its got your standard amount of reality tv car show drama, but I think its pretty interesting to see what cubans have to go through to keep their old american cars on the road, and the challenges they face sourcing parts.

rcutclif
rcutclif Dork
8/14/15 11:07 a.m.

Cool. That's real grassroots. Its like junkyard wars without the seeded parts.

93gsxturbo
93gsxturbo Dork
8/14/15 11:14 a.m.

The little lady and I have been watching it and very much enjoying it.

Standard TV show drama, but its an interesting subject, and better than the normal Jesse James/Boyd Coddington/Richard Rawlings shows.

Amazing what they consider "restored". Love all the diesel repowers of classic iron. Am I the only one who thinks that Chrysler "convertible" looks like a total rat?

failboat
failboat UltraDork
8/14/15 11:17 a.m.

Is it just me or does it look like it was a 4 door with the 2 rear doors welded shut?

93gsxturbo
93gsxturbo Dork
8/14/15 11:37 a.m.

The Chrysler? Probably, seems most of the cars down there are the utilitarian 4 door versions. Will have to look closer at it. What really gets me is the wrecked chrome on the front - not "perfectly restored"

SilverFleet
SilverFleet UltraDork
8/14/15 2:05 p.m.

There used to be a documentary on Netflix called Yank Tanks, which is basically the same thing. The stuff some of the oldtimers would do was incredible. There was a guy that HAND-SIFTED asbestos in his backyard to make re-manufactured brake shoes and pads. He was way up there in age, and when the interviewers asked if he knew how dangerous dealing with asbestos was, he told them he had been doing it for years and it hasn't killed him yet!

alfadriver
alfadriver UltimaDork
8/14/15 2:09 p.m.

In reply to SilverFleet:

Not quite so dangerous if one got it wrong, but a similar line on this show- the crank on one of the engines is damaged, so they are forced to add metal to it. I could not see any TIG welders, so am not sure how the guy is adding the metal.

Getting it wrong would be large bearing gaps as opposed to brake materials turning into dust at a bad time....

It's a pretty cool show. Actually made me think that those guys would be good at making a challenge car.

Driven5
Driven5 Dork
8/14/15 2:34 p.m.
alfadriver wrote: It's a pretty cool show. Actually made me think that those guys would be good at making a challenge car.

...But what would they do with the other half of their budget?

Stampie
Stampie New Reader
8/14/15 2:44 p.m.

I love the show for their ability to adapt and overcome but hate how the voice over tries to blame everything on the embargo. Do they really believe that they don't have engine hoist because of the embargo? Like the whole rest of the world is incapable of building them? Do they have to route all the HF China stuff through the United States? OK rant over. If lifting the embargo does change their economy then I'd hate to see what happens to all these cool old cars.

Stampie

TGMF
TGMF Reader
8/14/15 5:23 p.m.

Enjoy it while it lasts, embargo over, so I assume there will be a rapid and massive importation of used cars from Florida and the surrounding area. On that thought, perhaps I could start a business gathering up all the panther cars ( or anthing that makes a great taxi)I can find to sell in southern Florida at crazy markup.

alfadriver
alfadriver UltimaDork
8/14/15 5:26 p.m.

In reply to TGMF:

Except that they need money to buy those cars.

TGMF
TGMF Reader
8/14/15 5:28 p.m.

...true. Give it a couple years. Tourisim is about to seriously jump there. For Americans this place was forbidden for so long there's gotta be pent up demand. Tropical...cheap...relatively close. Tourisim hayday.

The Hoff
The Hoff SuperDork
8/14/15 5:34 p.m.

Embargo is not lifted. That's up to the Congress, so I'm sure it will go well

TR8owner
TR8owner HalfDork
8/14/15 8:50 p.m.

As a Canuck I've been taking legal winter resort holidays in Cuba for the past 18 yrs. The old car scene isn't what many American enthusiasts think/hope as so many of the cars have been jury rigged. There are a few perfect $$$ examples but most of the cars have only the body to offer. But you have to admire the Cuban car guys for their innovation of keeping these cars running all these years.

There's also a load of Soviet era Lada's in Cuba if anybody is interested.

Slippery
Slippery Dork
8/14/15 9:26 p.m.

I saw one episode were they rebuilt a V8. The guy picked it up from machining and proceded to paint the bare block, journals and all

Slyp_Dawg
Slyp_Dawg HalfDork
8/14/15 11:30 p.m.

is it weird that the Lada's interest me more than the old American iron?

shadetree30
shadetree30 Reader
8/16/15 11:37 a.m.
Stampie wrote: I love the show for their ability to adapt and overcome but hate how the voice over tries to blame everything on the embargo. Do they really believe that they don't have engine hoist because of the embargo? Like the whole rest of the world is incapable of building them? Do they have to route all the HF China stuff through the United States? OK rant over. If lifting the embargo does change their economy then I'd hate to see what happens to all these cool old cars. Stampie

I have to question that as well. Are we the ONLY nation embargoing them? Can't they get stuff from other countries like their buddies in China? They manufacture cars in Mexico, Argentina, and Brazil; or is it simply the failed economic structure of Cuba?

HappyAndy
HappyAndy UberDork
8/16/15 12:04 p.m.

I watched an episode last night, it was interesting, but some parts seemed phony or forced. There were plenty of relatively modern cars on the streets in the background. The Beetle that they used for the dead battery-push start demo was probably newish Mexican built car.

I'm sure the embargo genuinely makes things challenging, but Cuba has plenty of friends that they can trade freely with, that have access to US goods. For example, there is an equipment wholesaler that my company does business with that ships a lot of machines to Mexico, the Mexicans then transfer much of it straight to Cuba, or at least that's what they tell us.

I think the poverty of the average Cuban has a much bigger impact. I admire their ingenuity, resourcefulness and determination, we could learn a lot from them.

TR8owner
TR8owner HalfDork
8/16/15 12:59 p.m.

In reply to shadetree30:

The USA is the only country maintaining an embargo against Cuba but that in itself is quite significant. They were supported by the Soviet Union until the collapse. After that they opened their doors to tourism which is now a big money maker and receives several million tourists a year from all over the world except for one country. Cuba is a third world country just like every other Caribbean island, and its a poor country but you'll see much worse poverty in parts of Haiti, Dominican Republic, Jamaica, etc than you'll see in Cuba. In fairness to Cuba, they do have a pretty good government healthcare system and its got quite a highly educated population with free university education. I have been holidaying there for 18 yrs and have noted many changes in this time. The average Cuban genuinely feels Castro and the revolution was a good thing, but they also feel its time is passed and they would like to see more normal relations with the USA. That will come. Its just a matter of when.

Tom1200
Tom1200 Reader
8/16/15 3:15 p.m.

I watched an episode out of curiosity, as my Great Grandfather came to the U.S. from Cuba and was involved in a would be car company at the time of his death in 1903. I found the show interesting, whenever I hear of the free University education my thought is always "oh it wasn't free", I did admire the resourcefulness of what was done. As for making money, there is far more to be made here in the U.S. than anything left in Cuba unless you can find something hidden away.

Tom

OHSCrifle
OHSCrifle HalfDork
12/3/15 9:19 p.m.

C6ban Chrome marathon on tonight.

It's the first time I saw the show, and I'm entertained. Amazing poverty and ingenuity.

The0retical
The0retical Dork
12/4/15 6:22 a.m.
TGMF wrote: ...true. Give it a couple years. Tourisim is about to seriously jump there. For Americans this place was forbidden for so long there's gotta be pent up demand. Tropical...cheap...relatively close. Tourisim hayday.

There's actually more to it than that. Cuba has dual economies, the ones that the tourists see and interact with and has a huge graft that goes to the Castros, and the local economies which utilize a different currency which is worth a fraction of the tourist currency. This system actually reinforces the poverty making upward mobility very difficult. There's a bunch of interesting papers on how the Cuban government makes it work as a control mechanism.

NOHOME
NOHOME UberDork
12/4/15 10:59 a.m.

I get a kick out of the show because it takes me back to my early days living in Puerto Rico. In my memory, Cubans always had a funny accent, but these guys on the show are a bit over the top, kinda like the Cuban version off the Newfie.

Even the car maintenance is similar; when I lived in PR from 1964 to 1973, people made do and mostly drove VW Bugs that were maintained on a perpetually rotating inventory of stolen parts.

NGTD
NGTD UltraDork
12/4/15 11:06 a.m.

Most of the cars you see in Cuba now are either old Soviet Bloc stuff or European (mostly French - Citroen's and Peugeot's).

We took the boys there a few years ago. One of the ways that I contribute to the local economy is tips. I make sure to tip very well.

GameboyRMH
GameboyRMH MegaDork
12/4/15 12:35 p.m.
SilverFleet wrote: There used to be a documentary on Netflix called Yank Tanks, which is basically the same thing.

Very hard movie to find these days, but I have it...if anyone wants it, PM me

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