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Ran When Parked’s 2013 holiday gift guide

contestDecember is almost over which means that it’s that time of the year again: The holidays.

Holiday shopping for a vintage car enthusiast can be tough. Nice clothes will end up torn, smartphones and other similar gizmos will end up in a pool of used gearbox oil and unfortunately not all junkyards offer gift certificates.

We have compiled a short list of gift ideas to help you please the gearhead on your list this holiday season.

1. If the car enthusiast you’re buying a gift for is planning on picking up a non-running car in the near future, why not make a gift basket out of the occasion?  Fill it with WD40, starting fluid, a basic tool kit, a yard of fuel line, ignition points, an oil filter, rags and at least one beer.

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2. One of the easiest gifts to give is a model car. These come in all shapes and sizes and range from $1 for a Matchbox car to several hundred dollars for certain stunningly realistic 1/12 replicas. The wide variety of cars reproduced means you’re sure to find one that your car enthusiast will appreciate.

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3. Old magazines and brochures are always a hit. Find an issue from the year when your enthusiast’s favorite car debuted, or find a period brochure that shows the car when it was brand new.  They are readily available in flea markets or online and are generally affordable.

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4. Fuses and lightbulbs make great stocking stuffers. Be sure to double-check what kind of fuses your enthusiast’s car uses.

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5. Vintage keychains are another great stocking stuffer.  They’re not particularly expensive and you can find one from just about any brand and any era.  Keychains can easily turn into a full-on gift if your gearhead owns a small armada of cars.

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6. Body parts. Sounds odd? Let us explain: Available at any junkyard, body parts such as trunk lids, hoods, grilles and even doors can be easily cleaned up and used as decoration in a garage or an office. Keep your gearhead’s tastes in mind when choosing one as some will prefer a panel that looks brand new while others seek patina.

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7. A project car.  Car enthusiasts would often like to pick up a new project but they’re often limited by time, work, family matters, house remodeling and life in general.  Neighbors be damned, find a car your gearhead often talks about in the classifieds and make sure it needs a substantial amount of work. If you look hard enough this can cost even less than a Matchbox car, and gift wrap is optional.  Surprisingly frugal idea, isn’t it?

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8. Yes, yes, we know, this makes the list every year but we really mean it: if you truly care about the person you’re buying a gift for, allow us to suggest a tow truck.  There is no better way to make a vintage car enthusiast happy this holiday season.  You’re guaranteed bonus points if the truck has something that doesn’t run (see number 7 above) parked on the back of it.

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3 thoughts on “Ran When Parked’s 2013 holiday gift guide

      • Me too!

        My wifes 109″ actually started out life as a tow truck, it was a factory built recovery truck with harvey frost crane etc. The bed still has the four cut outs where the crane mounted to the chassis. I’d love to get hold of a crane and refit it but not sure my wife would be too happy with that idea 🙂

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