September 21, 2011
We just got back from a two-week vacation in Oregon. A 2000-mile road trip and we didnít see a single Locost the whole time. Disappointing. We did stay overnight at the Oregon Caves and later drove through the town of Cave Junction, but at the time we were completely unaware that Cave Junction, Oregon is home to the worldwide headquarters of America's biggest and best Locost parts supplier, Kinetic Vehicles.
Not only is Kinetic a great source for Locost parts, but four years ago Kineticís proprietor and adventurer extraordinaire Jack McCornack offered up my recently-wrecked í91 Miata to the auto shop class at the local high school, with the goal of using it to build a Locost-type car that Jack designed. Jack and his girlfriend picked up the mangled Miata from my brotherís house in Willows, CA (home of Thunderhill Raceway) on a cool Saturday morning, and drove it all the way up to its final resting place in Oregon in a single day.
The Cave Junction high school auto shop class wasted no time stripping the Miata down to sheet metal in preparation for the build, and pictures of the dismantled car are still up on the locostusa forum. Over the next couple of weeks Jack started putting together the frame and suspension, but unfortunately that's as far as he got. The project was never completed, and nothing from the old Miata survived the ordeal. It's not clear why to this day, but due to some kind of crazy mix-up the high school shop teacher took it upon himself to send the car off to the crusher.
So that was a little disappointing, but we got over it, and now we have our own project to deal with. It would've been great while we were up in Cave Junction to stop off at Kinetic, visit with Jack and maybe pick up a Locost nose cone or a windshield, just a couple of the myriad parts we're going to need down the road and aren't sure we can make ourselves. Maybe not a myriad, but a lot. Half a myriad.
We knew before we left on vacation that Kinetic was somewhere in Oregon, but we were halfway to Eugene before I thought to look up the location of the place. My bad. Maybe next year. At least we're back home now and can start working on the Locost again, as soon as we figure out where we left off. I think we were cutting tubes.
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