Epic 34th Birthday

Well, it finally happened. I got another year older. I recall my 30th birthday really bothering me but the other 30’s have all been just fine. My family made me this delightful peanut butter cup cake tree and we opened presents together after I got home from work. Even though there’s not much I need, I really enjoyed the thoughtful gifts that my families and close friends gave me.

I would call this year’s celebrations “low key” and that’s fine by me (we had other activities that prevented us from doing additional partying). As I’ve gotten older I do a lot more reflecting and I think that I’m at a good point in my life. And I think my 34th year has some good things in store!

Cam Hughes, April 2, 2012

Corvette Z06 Tires & TPMS Sensors

I just had a crazy realization. I haven’t gotten new tires for my Asanti rims since July 2009. It’s been almost three years!

Anyway, with my current set of Michelin PS2’s worn down to the belt it was time for new tires. I headed over to Discount Tire in American Fork. They recently got a new tire machine and, as far as I know, they’re only place in Utah county where I can get my 325 25/20’s successfully put on (these are bigger tires than a stock Z06).

When I get my rims from West Coast Corvette I bought a set of tires and TPMS sensors from them. They told me the only way to get the sensors in the rims was to band them in. I’ve never had any problems with the bands, but the guys at Discount were disgusted.

With aftermarket rims it’s typical to have a valve stem that bends 90 degrees (left). A normal TPMS sensor can’t fit in a rim like this. What a lot of aftermarket rim manufacturers do is add an additional valve on the back of the tire that TPMS sensors can go in (right). My Asanti rims came with this extra valve but West Coast Corvette had opted to forgo its use (there may have been a reason but it’s been so long I don’t recall).

Discount Tire wanted to put the TPMS sensors in the “right way.” They said bands added unnecessary weight, have a tendency to slip and that my bands weren’t installed particularly well. I had them make the switch and so far there are no issues. I like having things done the “right way.” and I’m actually excited to have them do my front tires at some point. A big “thanks” to the AF Discount Tire- they have always been awesome.

Also for the record- having new tires is amazing. My car has so much extra grip (I had forgotten was it was like) that it makes me drive a little crazy. The ride is smoother and the handling is vastly improved as well. I don’t know why I waited this long! Oh yeah… maybe it’s the cost 😉

Cam Hughes, April 2, 2012

Cars That Make Me Go Ohhh!

I confess, I still look at cars. Well, anyone who reads this already knows that (remember the 1978 Corvette?). And why not? It’s fun, free and usually it makes me really appreciate what I’ve already got. But in March of this year I started to get serious about buying a new car (I do this about every 2-3 years).

In the course of shopping I ran into a few things I fantasized about pulling the trigger on… something like this:

I love the Lamborghini Gallardos. But deep down I’m an American muscle kind of guy and I think these Italian super cars are beautiful but overpriced (this one was a fairly good deal, but it was a 2005 model and, in my opinion, a power downgrade).

And then I decided to take the practical route- something with a back seat. Back in 2003 I had decided that one day I would own a Porsche 911 Turbo S. Seeing this gem rekindled the desire for a German 911 masterpiece. I think the red interior is stunning (although there may be a little too much red).

Again my preference for American vehicles (and my common sense) won out. Plus this model wasn’t an “S”. I was still obsessed by the idea of a backseat though. Sure I flirted with the Lambo and the Porsche but in the end I knew what I was actually going to get.

And that’s when I found this beauty:

A 2011 Chevrolet SS Camaro. All black with some yellow exterior and interior accents. Whipple supercharger (680 HP!), manual transmission, ground effects kit, like new condition. And best of all it had a backseat and it was half the price of the other two vehicles that I had considered (in other words, “realistic”). Ever since I was a kid I have dreamed of owning a Camaro (heck, my name is in there!). I was sold!

Unfortunately the car was sold too. Literally ten minutes before I made the decision to buy it someone else did. I think it was a killer deal and I’m super excited for the new owner (I actually sent multiple messages to the seller to contact me if the buyer backs out). If it was meant to be then it would have been (or will be). Here are some more pics:

I do think a Camaro is in my future (soon, even). I’ll have to keep an eye out for another amazing deal. And next time I will be like the cars I love- faster!

And for all you lucky Camaro owners our there: don’t get any ideas about being UtahCamaro (www.utahcamaro.com goes right back here). Zing!

Cam Hughes, April 1, 2012