top of page

RMSC News 2014 Issue 5 September-October 2014


From your Club President


I always look forward to this time of the year. Weather is perfect, temperature is perfect, the leaves falling off the trees is perfect, fall colors are perfect, riding my bicycle through the leaves that fall off the tree is perfect and the last thing that is perfect is driving my 1994 Classic 900T CV with the top down is the best. Some- thing about a Convertible is a great feel- ing. I really like taking My Convertible on long trips especially when I go fishing in Wyoming. I frequent the

Miracle Mile area on the North Platte River North of Rawlins and South of Casper, about dead cen- ter. Depending what di- rection you arrive from there is a minimum of 20 dirt miles up to 45 dirt miles. Classic 900’s are the most remarkable ve- hicle to take on wash- board and rutted roads. For those who own one, you know what I am say- ing. I have a speed bump in my neighborhood and when I drive over it, I do

The November 11th meeting will be at Breckenridge Brewery (5th & Kalamath) at 7:00PM. Agenda in- cludes Welcome new members, Updates, Projects, Tech Talk. Come at 5:30 for BBQ & Beer prior to the meeting. Bring memorabilia and stories to tell.

not even slow down. The car seems to float over it with no effort. I got to tell you it makes the passenger a little nervous and you can see them grab a handle or hold the seat to brace for the bump be- cause they have not experienced how ef- fortless it really is. I look at them and say “Aren’t Saab’s Wonderful!”

Hope you’re having a great Fall season. Enjoy!

by Darrell Christiansen (photos by Charles Stoyer)

Jerry opened the meeting with a short business meeting as per the bylaws of the Club. No new members attend- ed the meeting. Three of the board members 2 year terms are up, Paul Bottone (current treasurer), Dave Snider, and John Clary. All three indicated that they


would rerun for their spots, and the attending club mem- bers were asked if any of them would like to step up and be on the Board. No one indicated that they were inter- ested in running. As all three of the 3 open board posi- tions were unopposed, Bob Buck made a motion to re- elect Paul Bottone, Dave Snider, and John Clary by ac- clamation. The motion was seconded, and all members in attendance voted to approve.

Jerry discussed that while our Club is not a terribly fo-


cused club, with respect to races, etc., but yet we are probably one of the best known clubs in the US. We have many activities, we are known for our conventions, and at the annual SOC conventions we are always well represented in the area of volunteering and helping in organization. Jerry indicated that he was asked several times whether we would be hosting the 2019 SOC. Jerry presented a brief budget update, indicating that we have three interest bearing savings accounts. Our checking account has $384.56, while our total of all accounts is quite substantial. This is despite the fact that we do not charge dues.

Dave Snider presented the 'B' engine modification that he presented at the national SOC in Oregon. Dave dis- covered a number of years ago the head gaskets on and 8 valve and 16 valve engine were nearly identical. He took and 8 valve block and put a 16 valve head on it, and along with a machinists friend adapted the timing chain


set up to operate the 16 valve head. The machinist made a custom timing chain cover for the project. Since a 16 valve engine cannot be put into the 99 model, due to clearances with the external water pump, and the prox- imity of the firewall. The chain is custom made by the original manufacturer (Subaki) of the 16 valve engine chains. Dave received the 'Walter Kern' award 2 years ago in Iowa City. Dave has 3 kits (approx. $3000) made up for this conversion, but so far has had no takers.


Tom Nelson updated the group on membership. There are current 40 state or regional clubs in the US at this time. Current club membership is 150 as of the latest update. There are 178 members on our Yahoo site. The RMSC Facebook page has now grown to 78 members. RMSC has a subgroup of NG 9-5 members, which is planning a fall drive.

by Darrell Christiansen (photos by Charles Stoyer) (continued)


The Best Fleet award has been sponsored by our club for the past 10 years. Only 5 entries were part of the 2014 convention. Tom showed his presentation for this year's convention, which was themed on the Saab special black wheels on all of his vehicles. Tom won the top award for this year's competition. Tom encouraged all to enter next year.


Tom praised the organizers of the convention of having a great line-up of speakers. Tom took video of many of the sessions, but has in excess of 12 hours of tape. He will put these on You-Tube if everyone is interested in viewing. List of presenters:

Bud Clark - Two Stroke - completed and posted Ray Kopczynski, Bob McNary - Saab Collectables Dan and Hans - Alkan Rally

Dave Snider & Gary Stottler - 'B' motor water pump Tom Nelson - Project Red Bull

Jack Ashcraft - Vintage Parts

John Moss - Fuel system Diagnostics

Peter Backstrom - Saab Museum Curator, and NEVS update

Tom Nelson showed a little bit of each of the presenta- tions that he taped and has started to post on You-Tube. Tom presented the updated convention version of the Project Red Bull, presented at the convention, showing a few minutes.

Jerry showed pictures from the SOC in Oregon, which was attended by 16 members of the RMSC:

Tom Nelson, Karl Kingery, Steve and Lisa McCoy, David Snider , Jerry Danner, Bruce and Gayle Harbison


Paul and Myrna Bottone, Glen Clark, Laura Karstens Jim Beetham, Randy Kelly and son Brian, Dave Finley

Prior to the convention a tour of the west coast of Ore-


gon was undertaken by 9 of our members and several of the local club members. Jerry showed pictures of the drive that included the Columbia River valley, the coast, and Crater Lake. John Collins hosted a dinner party the first night in Salem, OR. First night on the road was a Oyster BBQ hosted by Dan Morley, and John Collins.

The tour lasted for 5 days prior to the convention.

Jerry also showed numerous slides of the SOC conven- tion, showing numerous cars and interesting persons that attended.


Jerry finished up the meeting with pictures of the Tattoo lady that visited his shop, and the sludge motor that he recently repaired.

by Terry Conway

The RMSC NG 9-5 group had their fall get together on Saturday, October 11th at the Buck Snort Saloon in Sphinx Park, CO. The saloon provided a nice back- drop for the six NG 9-5s and their owners that partici- pated in the gathering. This is likely one of the larg- est gatherings of NG 9-5s in the US this year. Our RMSC group has held 2 events each year since form- ing in early 2013, and our membership is now up to 11 cars.

In the picture below, from closest to furthest are Mar- gie & Dean Yoder’s Turbo6 Aero, Miles Bendixon’s Turbo4, C.J. Crowther’s Turbo4 Premium, Doug Crane’s Turbo4 Premium, Tom & Avis Nelson’s Tur- bo4, and Terry Conway’s Turbo4 Premium (Tom posted a picture to the FaceBook NG 9-5 pages as well). Margie & Dean, C.J., and Terry are all new to the RMSC, and in fact they all bought their SAABs in July of this year.


The saloon is tucked inside a small neighborhood in the mountains just off of Hwy 126 and there is not a lot of parking in front of the Buck Snort Saloon. In fact there was only four legitimate parking spaces that the manager reserved for our group. The group did succeed to lining up all six NG 9-5s for a few quick shots. It was short-lived, however, because the only entry to the lower parking lot (and a neighbor- hood) is adjacent to the saloon. It didn’t take long for a local gentleman to walk up the driveway and ask if the car blocking him could move. That was it for the six-car line up.

The owners had lunch and discussed the NG 9-5’s

uniqueness, including the differences between the Turbo4 version and the Turbo6 Aero. After lunch, as the owners were checking out each other’s 9-5s, a patron was overheard saying “I thought Saab wasn’t making cars anymore”. Tom explained these were all 2011 models and this was actually a gathering of a local Saab club.


Tom & Avis had to leave the event early for an ap- pointment back in Evergreen, so the rest of the group spent some more time looking over each of the NG 9- 5s. Margie & Dean owned the only XWD Aero in the group, so they spent a good of time looking at their car. The Aero’s unique front fascia, bigger Tur- bo6 engine, dark gray interior, and heated/cooled front seats were all very impressive.

The five Saabs departed the Buck Snort for the main


by Terry Conway (continued)

event, the NG 9-5 drive. Dean suggested a neat desti- nation off Hwy 285 that would provide a nice back- drop for pictures. Doug led the way and the group headed northbound towards Denver. The highway


Are we there yet?...Almost there!

by Bruce Harbison

As many of you know, the RMSC members who attended SOC14 had a great time. A couple of mem- bers went on the Tour prior to the event, others drove out for the SOC only, and a couple of members flew out. It was wonderful to see all the club members


together and also to see many “old friends” from past events and to visit with Peter Bäckström and Erik Carlsson too. Well done Northwest Saab Owners!

Gayle and I took off in the Talladega on Wednes- day the 6th, met up with some club members in Wyo-

allowed the drivers to open the cars up a bit and they enjoyed a nice scenic drive through the mountains with all five 9-5s united in a row in the left lane. A late model Corvette joined the middle of the convoy for a few miles, but soon was ahead of everyone and continued its own fall afternoon drive.

We arrived at The Fort Restaurant, a historic Morri- son landmark in the late afternoon. Luckily the res- taurant had not opened yet, so the drivers parked the NG 9-5s side by side for more photos. Each of the drivers broke out their cameras and cell phones to take photos of the cars with the restaurant and rocks in the background.

After they were satisfied with the second photo shoot, the group said their goodbyes. Hopefully a few more NG 9-5s can join in on the fun for the Spring 2015 drive!

ming and drove on to Mountain Home, Idaho for the night’s rest stop. Also joining our “loose” caravan were Don Miller and Bruce Billings who had started their journey in southern Maine a few days before. Mostly I-80 for most of the day with a little rain after lunch and then rain during the late afternoon as we got close to stopping for the night. Lots of use of the


cruise-control and wipers at 75-80 mph except where there was road construction, of course. It seems like

Are we there yet?...Almost there!

by Bruce Harbison (continued)

there is ALWAYS road construction on the inter- states out West in the summer, but those roads get a lot of use/abuse in all seasons, of course. We drove just under 800 miles the first day.

The next day we were off onto 2-lane roads that went through remote farm country in Idaho while heading northwest to our destination in Redmond, Oregon. The roads were in perfect condition for liter- ally hundreds of miles with not one pothole or break to be seen. Needless to say, some of our group elect- ed to “fudge” a little on the low speed limit with at LEAST one car seeing triple-digit speeds at times.

Temperatures were mild throughout the day with lots of sunshine. We all arrived at registration at the re- sort between about 2-3 o’clock. Very little driving after that for most of us except for a very short drive to the group photo location at a soccer field on the resort property, which made the photo very easy to organize. Again, well done!

After the SOC Charity Auction on Sunday morning, August 10th, Gayle and I took off with Steve and Lisa McCoy to go out to the Oregon coast for some “after- SOC R&R”. Beautiful roads again in and along the coast with an overnight stay in Florence, Oregon.

The McCoys had to leave for Los Angles the next day but Gayle and I continued down the coast to Ar- cata, California then inland through Redding and then trough Mt. Lassen National Park. We stayed over- night in Chester, California. Still beautifully main- tained roads with plenty of curves for the Talladega to soak up. On through the mountains and valleys of California and Nevada entering Utah at Wendover past the wet salt-flats for 100 miles straight with the cruise-control set on 80+. Last overnight was near Salt Lake City airport then back again through Wyo- ming to Cheyenne and south on I-25.

Okay, trip statistics: 2,987 miles driven using up

98.3 gallons of fuel at an average cost of $4.19/9 per

gallon. Average fuel consumption was 30.376 mpg. The lowest price per gallon was found in our home state of Colorado ($3.82/9) and the highest price was

$4.69/9 per gallon in Oregon. That tank was the highest octane and was also alcohol free. I should mention that all the fuel purchased was the highest octane available, and in Oregon there are no self- serve filling stations. Our average fill-up was about



13 gallons with about a 400 mile distance between fuel stops. So, are we there yet? Almost. Having picked up our Talladega in Trollhättan, Sweden 17 years and 1 month from the time we returned from this year’s SOC, the Talladega is just about to com- plete 100,000 miles. A long wonderful trip in a great Saab!


Long Distance RMSC Member from Costa Rica Visits Colorado

by Tom Nelson

Oscar Gomez, of San Jose in Costa Rica, was our very first RockyMountain Saab Club member from Latin America when he joined in 2006. Now we have two members from the far south, as John Hill is even father away, currently living in Argentina.

Oscar joined the RMSC via our YahooGroups link after he acquired a vintage Saab, his 1961 Model 96. He ended up buying a rebuildable engine for the car from the RMSC. The 850 cc 2-stroke came out of Project Redbull. It was shipped to Oscar in pieces along with other parts like carbs and manifolds. The car is still undergoing restoration, a long slow process in Central America without much nearby support.

Getting to know Oscar in person during his visit, we found that Saabs are only a very small piece of the collector car hobby for Oscar, as you will soon learn.

Oscar is a civil engineer in Costa Rica, currently the Technical Director for a burst welding process that is used by water districts to easily modernize their pip- ing to large diameter PVC. His territory is all of Latin America from Mexico to the southern tip of South America. To say that Oscar travels a lot would be an understatement as he averages over 30 trips a year.

His first trip to Colorado was for training in Lake- wood on the welding process, involving a client from Columbia. Oscar finished up work early the second day in Lakewood, so we had arranged to have him visit some of our other members in the Denver area.

I had interacted with Oscar early in his RMSC mem- bership, so I volunteered to act as his host in Colora-

do on September 30th, and I tried to schedule as much Saab activity as possible in one day. We ended up making 6 stops total, including 4 that were Saab- related, plus lunch and dinner.


After picking up Oscar from his hotel on South Colo- rado Blvd in Denver in my 2011 9-5, we headed di- rectly for Mile Hi Automotive where Jerry Danner was waiting to give Oscar the tour of his impressive facility..... Parts, Service, and Body Shop ... plus a stop at Jerry's private stash of vintage Saab parts. Os- car was temporarily in VSAAB heaven, trying to identify all the stuff he needs for his '61 Saab project.

From Mile Hi we drove up I-70 via Mt Vernon Can- yon to visit my humble Saab collection at the Garaj Mahal in Evergreen. Oscar got to see 3 vintage 2- stroke Saab including Project RedBull, my grandkids'

📷 📷

Long Distance RMSC Member from Costa Rica Visits Colorado

by Tom Nelson (continued)

restoration. We couldn't take him for a drive, as none of my strokers are street legal, but we did go to lunch in Bergen Park at the WhippleTree, my favorite local Mexican restaurant.

Charles Stoyer wanted to be the next stop mid- afternoon, so he made it a point to return early from


his home in Grand Lake to be there when I dropped Oscar at Charles and Bridget's Gar- age Mahal in Lookout Moun- tain. Charles showed him around his neat place and even gave a demo of his big Case skid steer, newly equipped with an industrial-sized snow blower.

From Charles place it was time to go to dinner, and Charles & Bridget picked the Colorado Plus Brew Pub on 38th in Wheatridge, where our RMSC had held a regular meeting last year. Meanwhile, Bruce Harbison and Steve McCoy had said they wanted to meet us for dinner so they joined us, as did Jerry. So we ended up with 7 for dinner where we got to learn a lot more about Oscar's extensive automotive collec- tion. He tried to recall the number of cars, and said 17! But later, after a few of the Colorado Plus 100 beers on tap came into play, it seems that when we got him to list the cars by country of origin, we counted 19 total cars. So here goes ........

Swedish cars (3) first, of course:

Saab 96 2-stroke bullnose, Volvo 850, Volvo 940

Italian cars (2):

Fiat 850 sedan, Fiat 124 ST 4D

German cars (3):

VW Beetle, DKW F1000, BMW

Japanese cars (2)

Toyota Corona, Datsun 210

American cars (9):

Chrysler NewYorker, Jeepster, Jeep Utility Wagon, Jeep Grand Cherokee Limited, Ford Fairlane, Ford Custom, Dodge Dart, Chevrolet Impala, Chevrolet Corvair

The final stop of the evening was at Jerry Danner's home and shop, which is a few blocks from the Colo- rado Plus. Oscar was obviously "wowed" by Jerry's green 1967 Saab 96 restoration as well as Jerry's re- cent Saab 93 with the GT850 motor. Lot's of detail photos that may come in handy when Oscar gets to


the final stages on his car. Perhaps the best was saved for last when Jerry invited Oscar to take a drive in his gray bullnose stroker. Having never driven a Saab 2-stroke ever, Oscar got a taste for what it will be like when he completes his project. Judging by the grins while driving Jerry's car, Oscar may be turning to high gear on his own restoration schedule.

Our RMSC members enjoyed Oscar's company and he in turn invited us to contact him for a visit next time in Costa Rica.


6 views0 comments

Recent Posts

See All


bottom of page