Rattletrap: The Coolest Hot Rod Meet You’ve Never Heard Of


The lust for days past is something that no generation seems to be immune from, especially when viewed through the lens of recreating a certain scene. Hot rods racing on the beach will always be cool, and the Race of Gentlemen has captured the hearts of Americans, but some Australian enthusiasts are giving us a run for our money with a vintage racing event called Rattletrap.

Fortyone30 customs, a hot rod shop in Toowoomba, Australia, posted this video of Rattletrap VII, which took place earlier this month. Hundreds of vintage cars and motorcycles gathered, along with a healthy crowd that turned out just to see the show. It’s all put on by the Drag-ens hot rod club. The group started in 1962 with just five members and has not only grown but stood the test of time, much like the cars the group loves. In fact, the group loves hot rods and building them so much that if you have a project car that doesn’t make progress at an appropriate rate, your membership could be in jeopardy. Harsh, but fair.

Especially when you consider the group is putting on such cool events as Rattletrap. What use is a large membership of cars sitting on jack stands when you have a whole weekend on the beach to drive fast?

Rattletrap was started in 2015 on the excitement brought from watching videos of other similar events. The idea to create a period-correct event for Australian hot rodders was born. A location in Crowdy Head, Australia (partway between Brisbane and Melbourne on the country’s east coast) was selected, and during a scouting mission the club was met by a group of surfers who kindly told them they were in the wrong place. Happily, though, they took the gear heads down to the right spot, and the event has flourished since.

As someone who lives in a very sandy environment and has to deal with cleaning and repairing the damage caused by the infinite amount of tiny rocks that blast paint and break down into a grinding paste on any moving part, the thought of building an era-correct hot rod and then taking it out to do burn-outs on the beach is a little tough, but then a video like this makes me think the clean up and wear would probably worth it for the experience. After all, who can put a price on time travel?


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    Island Dragway , just off of Rt.46 In Great Meadows N.J. After go to ‘Hot Dog Johnny’s ‘ ( a landmark ) just up the road in Belvidere. Continue on Rt. 46 to the Delaware Watergap. A really nice stretch of road. – Yea, I grew up there.

    Bad- The birch beer is great but many still rave about their fresh buttermilk. Who has that on their menu anymore? There’s also a place in Great Meadows, not far from Island, called The Stonebarn that has been doing high end restorations of Duesenbergs , Packards and the like that have won at Pebble Beach and other major events. For those who can have the time and are heading to The Race Of Gentlemen, most worthy of a stop over before or after. I’d suggest before as Island, as far as I know, is still a full quarter mile as god intended , in gods country, and a good shakedown track before the main. The young and limber may try sneaking into the pit side in a tow vehicle trunk. I did on more than one occasion but that isn’t a recommendation

    The amount of sand that would stick to the undercarriage of any of my cars would be horrifying, and driving through sea water cringe inducing…but the fresh water rinse afterward tips the decision to YES!

    Recently met the guy who is the subject and builder of the “coolest car pic of all time” on SoCal beach racing his home made hot rod. In his 80s and going strong, has the pic and the car but he definitely a Ferrari guy now.

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