Restoration and Tradition
Father-son bonding is a sacred tradition among men. Many fathers bond with their sons by tossing the pigskin, watching baseball games or going camping in the wilderness. However, one father-son duo — Rick and Ryan McGuire — bonded over their love of classic cars. That love would eventually pave the way for their future in the quick lube business.
Growing up, Ryan would hear his father, Rick, recount fond memories of the good ol’ days when American muscle cars ruled the road. One summer, while helping his father out at a dairy farm, Ryan’s fascination with cars was born.
“I was working with my dad in the summers during junior high out on one of the dairy farms,” Ryan said. “The farm had this old ’67 Mustang that was parked out behind the barn and it had weeds growing up through it. That got the conversation started, ‘Hey, we should fix one of these up,’ and it was just one of those ideas that took off from there.”
Ryan worked tirelessly over the span of three summers to save enough money to buy a car to fix up. When he had the cash, he and his father went hunting for the perfect vehicle.
“My dad and I promised each other that we were going to be patient [when looking for the car],” Ryan said. “We weren’t going to jump on the first car we saw. I would walk or ride my bike past a California Special Mustang that was in my neighborhood. It wasn’t for sale, but it was on my list of cars I wanted. I just happened to find one in southern California.”
Rick reflected on the day Ryan found the car that would prove to be the first of many father-son projects.
“Ryan kept looking and he found a 1968 California Special for sale in the San Bernardino desert,” Rick said. “We went down and looked at it. It was certainly a nice car, but it needed a bunch of work.”
So, on May 5, 1995, Ryan made his first major purchase and bought the ’68 California Special.
“It was an original California car,” Ryan said. “It was red on red, had a four-speed and a small block with a four-barrel. I remember my dad driving it and just laughing because he hadn’t driven a car from the ’60s in a good 20 years. It brought back so many memories for him. He was having a ball, and I was thrilled. I was 15 years old at the time, and we were going to start tearing this thing down and make it beautiful.”
Though neither of the McGuires were self-proclaimed mechanics, both Rick and Ryan decided to dive head first into the restoration process.
“We were both learning as we went and dove into it,” Ryan said. “The motor was in decent shape, so we didn’t have to get too deep into that on our first go-round. We gutted the interior, stripped all the paint off and really went after it.”
Once the California Special was restored, Rick got an itch to ditch his current car and restore another classic with Ryan. Only this time, the car was for Rick.
“When we finished the restoration of the California Special, my dad got the bug to restore another car,” Ryan said. “He had a newer Camaro, but he wanted an older car.”
Rick sold his newer car and found another ’68 beauty to fix up.
“I had a ’93 Camaro Z28, but I sold it in 1995 and had a gentleman find me a ’68 Shelby GT350,” Rick said. “Ryan put in as much work on restoring my Shelby as I did.”