Governor signs street rod registration bill

April 30, 2008

 The following is from the SEMA Driving Force newsletter. We feel it’s important to get the word out about this recent law. Here’s the article from the newsletter in it’s entirety-


Is This Heaven? No…It’s Iowa
SEMA Street Rod/Custom Vehicle Signed Into Law in Hawkeye State

The cumbersome and often confusing task of titling and registering a street rod or custom vehicle in Iowa just got a whole lot easier as Governor Chet Culver signed the SEMA Street Rod/Custom Vehicle bill into law. Under the new measure, qualifying vehicles are registered as the same model year that the body of the vehicle resembles. 

Sponsored by Iowa State Representative Jim Lykam, who is a member of the State Automotive Enthusiast Leadership Caucus (see Caucus Corner article on p. 4), the bill defines a street rod as an altered vehicle manufactured before 1949 or a vehicle designed to resemble a vehicle manufactured before 1949. The bill also defines a replica vehicle as a reproduction of an originally manufactured vehicle with the substitution or addition of parts to update the vehicle for purposes of safety, performance or reliability.

“Backed by the hard work and perseverance of Representative Lykam and fellow Caucus member Senator Jeff Danielson, we are extremely gratified that Iowa has joined the list of states that recognize street rods and customs as distinct classes of vehicles,” said SEMA Vice President of Government Affairs Steve McDonald. “The new law offers the benefit of also including qualifying replicas and kit cars in these specialty-vehicle titling and registration classifications.”

Under the new law, the owner of a street rod or replica vehicle must self-certify that the vehicle is in compliance with certain equipment specifications and shall pay a $10 registration fee.

The momentum behind the SEMA model continues to spread across the country as Idaho Governor C.L. “Butch” Otter signed into law a version of SEMA-model legislation that creates a state motor-vehicle definition for replica vehicles. The new law allows these vehicles to meet only the equipment and emissions standards in effect for the model year and vehicle being replicated. The new law defines a replica vehicle as a “vehicle made to replicate any passenger car or truck previously manufactured, using metal, fiberglass or other composite materials. Replica vehicles must look like the original vehicle being replicated but may use a more modern drive train.”

State Caucus members in Tennessee were instrumental in having the custom vehicle portion of the bill approved by the legislature and signed into law by Governor Phil Bredesen. Sponsored by Senator Tim Burchett and Representative Mike Williams, the legislation defines a custom-built car as a vehicle that is built for private use and is not constructed by a licensed manufacturer or remanufacturer. Under the bill, kit cars and replica vehicles will be assigned a certificate of title bearing the same model-year designation as the production vehicle it most closely resembles.

“The efforts by these lawmakers clearly demonstrate the benefit of creating relationships between enthusiasts and legislators in enacting hobby-friendly legislation,” added McDonald. “For enthusiasts across the country, building, maintaining and enjoying these vehicles is a favorite pastime. This law represents an opportunity to acknowledge their commitment to the hobby and to protect it for future generations.”

To date the SEMA-model bill has been enacted in various forms in Arkansas, California, Colorado, Florida, Hawaii, Illinois, Maine, Missouri, Montana, Nevada, Oregon, Rhode Island, Virginia and Washington. The bill is currently pending in Delaware, Kansas, Massachusetts, Michigan, New Hampshire, New York, Ohio and Pennsylvania. The measure was also introduced and approved by the Wyoming House of Representatives last year. However, given the short legislative session, there was not enough time for the measure to be considered by the Senate. The bill will be reintroduced in 2009.

For more information or to download a copy of the SEMA Street Rod/Custom Vehicle bill, visit

Summary of SEMA-Model Street Rod/Custom Vehicle Bill

Defines a street rod as an altered vehicle manufactured before 1949 and a custom vehicle as an altered vehicle manufactured after 1948.
Provides specific registration classes and license plates for street rods and custom vehicles.
Provides that replica vehicles and kit cars will be assigned the same model-year designations as the production vehicles they most closely resemble and allows the use of non-original materials.
Exempts street rods and custom vehicles from periodic vehicle inspections and emissions inspections.
Provides that vehicles titled and registered as street rods and custom vehicles may only be used for occasional transportation, exhibitions, club activities, parades, tours, etc. and not for general daily transportation.
Exempts street rods and custom vehicles from a range of standard equipment requirements.
Allows the use of blue-dot taillights on street rods and custom vehicles.

Comments are welcome.

Some upcoming events

April 30, 2008

If you’re getting cabin fever, here’s some of the goings on for May.

 Friday, May 2nd, at the Dick-N-Sons Lumber Complex, is their first Car
Cuise in of the year. It runs from 6-9 pm and is located in Blue Grass,
Ia. just off Hwy 61 at exit 107. There’s no cost, and door prizes are

 Sunday May 4th, from 9 to 4, JC Whitney is hosting a car show. It’s a
free show for both entrants and spectators. There will be trophies and
door prizes. It’s held at JC Whitney, 1 JC Whitney Way, LaSalle, Ill.
That’s Rte 6 west of I78, south of I-80 at exit 81. If you want more
information call the hotline at 815-667-7717.

 A little closer is the 6th Annual Blessing of the Cars on Sunday May
4, from 7am to 4pm. This event is held at the Zion Lutheran Church,
1216 W. 8th Street, Davenport, Ia.

 Wednesday, May 7, is Hot Rod Nights, from 6-9 pm, at Governor’s Pub,
2180 53rd Street, in Moline, Ill.

 Friday, May 9, is the Friday Night Cruise-in at Advance Auto Parts,
3813 18th Avenue, Rock Island, Ill. It runs from 6-9 pm.

 Saturday, May 10, is the Alpha Car Show from 9 am to 3 pm, at Main
Street and Rte 150, in Alpha, Ill.

 May 10-11, is the Beaux Arts Fair in downtown Davenport, Ia.

 Sunday, May 11 is Mother’s Day guys.

 May 15-18, is the John Deere Basket Fest with the Longberger Basket Co.
It will be held at the John Deere Pavilion in Moline, Ill. For more info
so to


 Saturday, May 17, from 8 am to 3 pm, is the Houby Days Festival Car
Show in Cedar Rapids. It will be held at Sokol Park in Czech Village,
A Street and 16th Avenue SW.

 Later on Saturday, May 17, from 6- 9:30 pm, is the Quad Cities Cruisers
Cruise in at JC Penny parking lot at Southpark Mall, 4800 27th Street,
Moline, Ill.

 Saturday and Sunday, May 17 and 18 is the Little Hershey 43rd Annual
Swap Meet and Car Show in Belvidere, Ill. It’s on Rte 76 North at the
Boone County Fairgrounds. Swap meet opens at 6 am, and the Sunday only
Car Show runs from 8 am- 4 pm. Call Chuck or Lisa Stull at 815-566-9603
for more information.

 Also May 17-18 is the Broadway district Historic Homes Tour in Rock
Island, Ill. For more info go to

 Sunday, May 18 is the Camp Curageous Show in Monticello, Ia. Show runs
from 8 am to 4 pm. For more info call Mary Johnson at 319-377-9517. This
is one of our favorite shows, and proceeds go to a good cause.

 May  24-26 is Memorial Day weekend.
 May 26, is the QC Criterium Bike Races in downtown Rock Island, Ill.
 That’s a few things going on, comments on just about anything
are welcome.

Fuel, or food for thought?

April 29, 2008

 In an article from the Creators Syndicate, Mona Charen brings up some
of the inconvient truths about ethanol. In the cartoon with this
article is this statement; “Results may vary overall, biofuels cause
considerably higher greenhouse emissions than conventional fuels.
Biofuel production results, directly or indirectly, in the destruction
of natural ecosystems such as the rain forests and grasslands. Does not
include emissions generated from the transportation and refining process
of biofuels. See most recent published studies in the journal ‘Science’
for further details.”

 The article itself raises some issues that we feel should have Congress
looking at this problem instead of big oil. Knowing the damage the
production of this fuel causes, our Congress decided to ramp up ethanol
production fivefold over 2006 levels.

 For the people who think green, here’s another quote; “When the hidden
costs of conversion are included, greenhouse-gas emissions from corn
ethanol over the next 30 years will be twice as high as from regular
gasoline. In the long term, it will take 167 years before the reduction
in carbon emissions from using ethanol ‘pays back’ the carbon released
by land-use change.”

 You can read the entire article here-

 And from Minnisota public radio comes this gem-

 In news, after hundreds of complaints the Minnisota Pollution Control
Agency tested a St. Paul ethanol plant. They found high levels of
carbon monoxide, as well as VOCs (Volatile Organic Compounds). These
included fomraldehyde and acetaldehyde, both carcinigens.

 The EPA found that “most if not all” ethanol plants are emitting air
pollutants at many time the rates allowed by permits. Check it out-
 There’s some of the information out there that our Congress must not
have seen. Comments are always welcome

Mother’s Day ideas

April 28, 2008

 Mother’s Day is fast approaching. If you haven’t thought of a gift yet,
we thought we’d give you a few hints. If you want something different
for your mom, how about new barstools with car logos on them, or a pedal
car shaped like a 1950’s Ferrari? You can also get silverware with
handles shaped like tools, plates that look like brake rotors, or a
flamed shirt. For these and more gift ideas, go to-

 If you’re safety concious like myself, you may have been thinking about
getting Mom’s tires filled with nitrogen. In theory filling the tires
with a nitrogren concentration of ninety-five percent or better lessens
corrosion and results in longer tire life. The gas is denser than oxygen,
so it would leak out slower, and because it’s inert it doesn’t react to
temperature change  the way regular air does. However, tire manufacters
insist because regular air is seventy-eight percent nitrogen, the effect
of a higher concentration of nitrogen is negligible.

 And just in case Mom uses an impact wrench when she rotates her tires,
remind her to use the impact to loosen the lug nuts only. As we all know,
if you use an impact to tighten lugs you risk broken studs, warped brake
drums or rotors, and even cracked wheels.

 So ther’s a few ideas for Mother’s Day. Comments on just about anything
are welcome.

Mini rant

April 27, 2008

Some researchers now want to inject sulphur compounds into the
atmosphere to ease global warming. Sounds like a plan to us. The
problem is new studies show that doing this would erase the ozone
layer and slow the recovery of the ozone hole over the Antartic
by as much as 70 years. Opposing sides on this issue say recovery
of the ozone hole over Antartica could worsen warming in that area.


 OK. Our lawmakers have been making laws so diesel engines spew less
sulphur into the atmosphere, while also being against coal-burning
power plants for electricty which also pollute with sulfur compounds.
This same bunch of people has caused our food, heating, gasoline,
diesel fuel, and other cost to rise. All the while saying they’re
going to have to raise our taxes because we don’t pay enough.

 And locally, we still wonder about our town. We want to spend millions
of dollars to improve our riverside parks, when they are both in a
flood zone. While we don’t flood every year, when we do get hit like
this year, where is the money to rebuild the half million dollar
outhouse, skatepark, and other amenities going to come from? We’ll give
you three guesses, and the first two don’t count.

 Another question would be; if the gambling boat has to move because of
the flood, will it come back? Do that many people really care? Since we
don’t gamble we don’t know.

 That’s our little end-of-the-weekend minirant. Ideas and comments are

A quick update

April 26, 2008

 Last night Alderman Lynn joined the Guardian Angels on our first patrol of the night. We’d like to thank him for going along. Though it was a quiet night, we imagine the Alderman got a good nights sleep afterward.  Since we haven’t said anything about the group lately, we’ll do a little update. Some of the places we patrolled were the sites of the last two shootings, East 14th St., East 15th St., Locust St., Harrison St., West 15th St., Gaines St., Brown St., Marquette St., 3rd and 4th Streets, and the Skybridge. That is be no means everywhere we went, but meant to give you an idea of the area covered on a patrol.

 The night was almost perfect for a patrol, except for the wind. As we have said, if someone informs one of the group of trouble in their area, we’ll do our best to add the area to patrol. That’s a quick nickel tour, comments on just about anything are welcome.

Is it just us…

April 25, 2008

 Or is it getting crazy out there? 

We’ve been following the pregnant woman who was shot during a bank
robbery in Indianapolis. She was five months pregnant, and while her
twins weren’t hit when she was shot in the stomach, both twins have died.
For more on the story go to-

 This should be a death penalty crime. This jerk ruined more than two
lives. And if caught, he’ll probably get twenty years and paroled in ten.
Capital punishment has been called cruel and inhumane treatment for the
offender. Would you supporters of this belief please tell us what you
call what this 30 year old woman and her family has gone through?

 We as a society cannot continue to condone this type of action. The
person who did this does NOT deserve a chance, he deserves forfeiting
his life. Bring back public executions, sell popcorn, cover it in the
media, and I’d bet violent crime rates would drop.

 Our condolences to this woman and her family and friends.

 Comments on any subject are welcome.