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Mid Kansas Vintage Thunderbird Club, Incorporated
Wichita, Kansas

A Chapter of Vintage Thunderbird Club International, Inc. (VTCI)

Mid-Kansas’ Club Song: 
“Silver Thunderbird”  by Marc Cohn

Enjoy the music !! 
Over 200 songs from the late 50's early 60's

Form Object


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December 2012 Newsletter January 2013 Newsletter



February 2013
A Chapter of Vintage Thunderbird Club International, Inc. (VTCI)
The VTCI Recognizes ALL Thunderbirds, 1955-2005!

Celebrating Mid Kansas Vintage Thunderbird Club's 21st year!!

January Business Meeting Not All Business:
The club had a lot of catching up to do after an almost two month recess.  Spears Restaurant was glad to see us and the comfort food tasted awfully 
good in our private dining room. 
Secretary Bev’s Minutes of the November meeting sounded like ancient history. 
In the absence of Treasurer Lynda (a victim of the flu)  Larry gave us the bank balance, and Kaye Barth and Secretary Bev took care of collecting for the new business cards, 
and took in some club renewals. 
In addition to important business including passing out new business card orders and passing out new windshield flyers, our Prez continued discussion about recruiting practices. 
We also endeavored to line up the club year—at least the first three months-- in this meeting so we could begin another successful year.

Some early changes were evident in this meeting.  The Devlin/Starbird Rod and Custom show had no entrants from our club. Our Prez, however, had volunteered to work the 
show and did serve part of three days on the 17, 18, and 19th of January.  More about that in a minute.

Although we had supplied 9 cars to The Chill for 2012, it was apparent The Chill was not to be the recipient of our presence this year.  None of the car owners desired a repeat
performance and Carl Marts and April, who worked one of the booths last year for a friend, did not repeat their efforts this year.  Although Kaye Barth presented information 
showing the possibility of our club being eligible for a “Best Participation” and/or “Best Display” prize the feeling seemed to be that we gave it our best shot last year and want
to sit this one out.
We also discussed the possibility of again hosting the All Wheels Rally at Lake Afton for 2015.  The reason for choosing 2015 is because that would be the 60th anniversary 
of the Ford Thunderbird (1955-2015).  A straw poll was taken in the meeting to get a feel for our club’s opinion about (1) sponsoring the Lake Afton Show again, (2) sponsoring
it jointly with the Classic Club, or (3) passing on it completely. 
At the end of the discussion it appeared that our club has the necessary funds to sponsor it and although it may not have “paid off” with many new members the P.R. for the 
clubs through higher visibility and through our T-Shirt selection was awfully nice.  The straw poll indicated our members preferred to host the show in cooperation with 
the Wichita Classic Thunderbird Club, and assuming the sponsorship can be had for $400 we are interested.  The matter is pending.

Starbird/Devlin Show at Century II
January 17 and 18 our Prez Rod Wake was one of many volunteers to help again at the Starbird/Devlin Rod and Customs Car Show at Century II. 
Jim Winter was also one of the workers and helped mark the parking spots with chalk the night before vendors and cars began entering the huge complex. 
Rod’s duties included ushering vendors and show cars to their correct spots on Thursday.  On Friday the main assignment was to take tickets at the front doors although 
errands and “other duties as assigned” were prevalent.  The Hall was full as allegedly 329 cars filled the spaces.  Lots of beautiful work was on
exhibit as well as many vendors with car related

The Eagle states that 66 cars were shooting for the coveted “Magnificient 7” awards, from the total of 329 entrants. 
The big winner was—of course—a Ford, specifically a ’33 Ford from Georgia. 

Our photographer, however, always had an affinity for the ’49 Mercury coupe and the one pictured here caught his fancy.

A Meeting Of The Minds: 
On January 26 Prez and Secretary met with some VTCI Thunderbird Club heavy hitters in Kansas City!  On that date Cliff and Pat Lieske from the Midwest 
Thunderbird Chapter, 
(Minneapolis/St. Paul) Tim and Laura Pundt (Kansas City Vintage Thunderbirds) met with Prez and Secretary at a great Kansas City Style barbeque named Oklahoma 
Joe’s, in Leawood, KS for a fabulous meal. 
You will recall that Tim and Cliff were the two masterminds who put together a successful Regional Convention for us last summer in a third city; Des Moines.. 
Now, talk about an uncanny coincidence, among the other restaurant patrons that night were Scotty and Beverly Massey from Cameron, Missouri who we had 
also met last 
summer at the Regional Convention in Des Moines. They were easy to remember because they brought their real cute Inspiration Yellow custom made Retro Bird trailer to 
Des Moines behind their Inspiration Yellow 2002 Retro Bird! 
Cameron is about 70 miles north of KC, and of all the hundreds of restaurants in the KC Metropolitan area, the one they chose was the same one where we 
were enjoying our supper!
The troupe then traveled to the Pundt’s place in Lee’s Summit, MO for a pleasant 
evening of conversation and information sharing among three successful VTCI 
chapters.  Both the Lieskes and the Pundts have been long time Presidents and Vice
Presidents, Officers, and Newsletter Editors of their chapters and have a wealth of 
experience to share. Among the topics shared back at Tim, Laura, Emma and 
Greg’s house were, Thunderbirds, Clubs, Club Activities, VTCI events, good times 
at Regionals and Internationals, bad times at Regionals and Internationals, and 
successful club activities and fun runs.
In addition to owning three Thunderbirds which have appeared at various VTCI events, 
Tim has an unbelievable number of Die Cast Thunderbird models which he shared 
with us.  He has been collecting Thunderbird models, Thunderbird Hot Wheels, and
Thunderbird memorabilia since he was a teenager.
Tim is also a formidable cook and baker and the group devoured two delicious pies
around a late night dinner table gab fest. Where else can you think of a situation where
people would drive a few hundred miles to spend the evening with folks they would have
never met if it were not for Thunderbird conventions?
Swap Meet: It’s Here! 
Hope all of you have rounded up spare parts, literature, tools, or whatever and have somehow provided it to our booth at the Swap Meet.  At the time
this Newsletter rolls through the massive Mid-Kansas Vintage Printing Presses (known to the public as Office Max) the Swap Meet of February 1 and 2nd
is upon us and without the ability to see into the future, no report can be given in this issue.  We’ll tell you all about the degree of success of the swap meet in the 
next issue of our Newsletter.
St. Patrick’s Day Parade:
March 16 will be the date of the parade through Delano.  Prez has made all the arrangements and all we need now are Thunderbirds! 
Let Prez know if you can drive in the parade. 

One more Newsletter will come out in the meantime with additional details!


Interesting Article From Another Club:
One of the nice things about networking with other
clubs through the VTCI and the voluntary exchange
of newsletters, is that we have access to articles
written by other clubs’ members.

In this case, your Prez has become good Email friends with Mort White of Moortown, Ontario, about 50 miles north of Detroit. 
Mort is a Mechanical Engineer who spent his entire career with Dow Chemical and is a member of the Southern Ontario Thunderbird Club. 
Mort has restored many cars including a drop-dead-gorgeous ’66 Thunderbird Convertible 
and a ’57 Thunderbird. 
He is a colorful writer who has written many
technical articles for their chapter Newsletter, and has graciously granted permission for our Newsletter to run this recent article. 
It deals with things we all need to be aware of…but probably neglect regularly.
Although Mort’s references to Kilometers, and to Southern Ontario garages do not apply to us the rest is timely information for any Vintage automobile owner:

"Routine Maintenance"
For many of us ”routine” maintenance turns out to be not so routine. (Almost) everybody follows
some sort of an oil change program (from one extreme of changing both fall and spring - to
hopefully it gets done  every year or so). My first Car was a 1956 Ford which recommended oil
changes between 1000 miles (normal driving) and 2000 for mostly highway driving - oil filter
changes were listed at 4000 miles My 1966 Thunderbird manual recommends oil and filter
changes at 6000 miles or 6 months, whichever comes first (neither alternative works well for a car
driven only 500 - 1000 miles/yr. - surely an oil change every fall will work fine). Some new Volvo
and other models suggest 16000 km. between oil and filter changes – or wait until a light tells you
its needed (luckily “they don’t make them like they used to”).
What’s often missed are many areas that need lubrication but are often forgotten – for example:
1) Door Hinges and hinge checks :
usually done when they get noisy (often bushings are already worn and the hinge pin may now be enlarging the holes in the hinges themselves due to lack of lubrication – which may require hinge to be replaced). 
Thunderbird doors are typically very heavy. 
Lubricate both top and bottom of both upper and lower hinges plus hinge 
check mechanism (my mechanic uses something called “Honey Goo” in a spray can with an applicator tube for many of these lubrication issues).
Click image to find out where to buy in the USA
2) Hood Hinges:
There is a huge strain on the hinges and pivots every time the long/heavy hood is opened or closed. On ’61 thru ’66 there are 4 joints in
each hinge held together by 4 large “rivets”.
  For these hinges, lack of lubrication and wear will round off the square hole (look carefully at rivet holes for signs of wear/rounding) to the point where a rivet may twist and pull thru allowing the hood to collapse  -  this is exciting at a car show ! 
For ’61 thru ’66 Thunderbirds best solution is to tack weld all “rivets” at end with + so they can’t pull out – all pivot points on any style of hinge still need lubrication!

3) Trunk hinges both hardtop and convertible: too often these too are serviced only when they get noisy.

 4) Gas filler door hinge : see #3

 5) Hood pins/safety latch/hood release cable (if any – and now you can’t get the hood open): these are usually serviced after something 

6) Parking brake cable: when did you last test and/or lubricate? On many cars this is done only as part of original safety check by the mechanic and never used again. 
With single braking systems on our cars this could be a valuable backup in case of brake problems! 
Also need to lubricate/check release mechanism under dash – incl. vacuum release on ’64 to’66 Thunderbirds
(could use “Honey Goo” for cable lubrication also for tachometer, speedometer, etc.).


7) Convertible top pins + arms, cylinders, hinges in trunk,  limit switches, etc.: lots of weight, large forces, combined with dirt, rust, infrequent use can cause these to get stiff/seize and may cause problems in top going up or down.

8) Older distributors with oil cup: if there the manufacturer is suggesting you should oil it.

 9) Choke and throttle linkages: usually serviced after car is hard to start.

10) Automatic Transmission kickdown linkage: tough service as parts are under car – typically gets lubricated only when some problem occurs.

 11) Exhaust gas diverter valve: when its installed it will be at the back end of the R.H. exhaust manifold (designed to divert exhaust gases from #2 cylinder to #7 cylinder thru bottom of the intake manifold below carburetor to help vaporize gasoline during cold weather) – and should open with the spring as the car heats up. Not usually needed on our Thunderbirds which normally aren’t used in cold weather – so probably OK if missing or stuck open  - - if stuck shut will put too much heatinto the intake manifold for proper summer operation.

12) Rear differential: out of sight, out of mind: I’m sure many of our Thunderbirds are still running on “factory fresh” gear oil from 1964. The rear axle fluid can get contaminated with water, rust, sludge, etc. – obviously not a good environment for gears, bearings, and seals (inspect fluid to see if dirty).

13) Grease: too much diversity between years to provide guidance – you need to make a complete list of suspension, steering, and driveshaft fittings and make sure whoever greases your car gets all of them and not just the few obvious ones.

14) Perhaps once a year you might spray WD – 40 into each door lock to keep it lubricated and waterproofed.

15) Check transmission fluid level/colour/smell – should not be burnt or discolored.

Not normal lubrication issues but - - -

Many power windows, vents and seats are operated somewhere between little and never –then when they don’t work we wonder why they’ve failed as they worked perfectly only a
couple of years ago. These should be operated every few months (at least) – best with engine operating to get highest voltage in system - power and regular seat tracks should get blown out with compressed air (yearly ?) as dirt, rust, crumbs, seat foam, carpet threads, etc.
plug up the tracks, plus tracks, and joints in power seat mechanisms should also be lubricated.
- Blow your own horn! For some the last time the horn was used was during the Safety Inspection when you bought the car. Condensation/rust/time causes the coil and/or points inside the horn to
seize so it won’t work (you should also be able to hear both horns
working). Horns should be “tested” 2 – 3 times per summer for a couple of seconds to keep them “free”. I’ve been able to free up some of them with a combination of a screwdriver/wrench/hammer and WD – 40! (spraying oil into the horn opening won’t help as that’s not where the moving parts/contacts are).
Call me if you have questions.

You should consider checking/changing your fuel filter before, instead of after it plugs up –had my ’71 Buick out for a drive recently and when I
went to accelerate car would barely run.
I was worried I wouldn’t get home but found it was OK if I didn’t accelerate or go above 50 MPH. Changed filter and it was fine but couldn’t see the problem until filter dried out (folded paper cartridge) and I cut it open – there was nearly a spoonful of white powder inside.

I’m told this could be caused by some combination of ethanol in
the fuel, old gas, water and reactions from fuel stabilizer
(probably  like everything else “global warming” is somehow

When did you last check tire pressures (incl. spare)?
How old are your tires? (for many years tires have had a date code molded into the sidewall in the format “4707” (this indicates tire made in 47th week of 2007) – would they pass a safety check (can’t have any cracks showing cords, any areas down to wear bars ?). 
Some manufacturers are now suggesting a “tire life” of 6 years although our Thunderbird service is typically less harsh than “normal” (fewer miles, less high speed driving, fewer hours exposure to direct sunlight, etc.).

Hoses and belts: usually only checked/changed AFTER one fails.
NOW you can consider the important things like waxing your tires (or whatever people do to make
them shine) so you can go for a drive.

---Mort White,
Southern Ontario Thunderbird Club

The 2013 VTCI Regional and International Conventions: 

As you know, our chapter is a part of the North Central Region of the VTCI.  Our North
Central Regional VTCI Convention is set for July 11 through 14, 2013 at Springfield,
Illinois. The Land of Lincoln Thunderbird Club, and Western Michigan Thunderbird Club
are co-hosts. 
There is a lot of history at Springfield, a lot of Abraham Lincoln history, and
a lot of fun events planned by the two clubs. 
We have contributed to the 2013 Regional with some financial gifts, and hope a lot of us can 
contribute with our presence! 

Watch for all information and registration forms in The Scoop, or Google up VTCI and take a
look at upcoming events listed there.

Then, the VTCI International Convention for 2013 will be hosted by the South Central
Region and held in Houston on September 26 through 28, 2013
Lots of NASA activities, a dinner cruise, other great activities and a lot of fabulous Thunderbirds are in
the offing.  Again, watch The Scoop, and/or Google up VTCI and take a look.


The President’s Message

By Rod Wake, Mid-Kansas President

Dear Thunderbird Friends:
The uncanny weather for this time of the year makes it easy on our Thunderbirds.
Without snowfall and very little ice there is no reason to leave those ‘Birds in the
nest.  Makes it nice to get them out about once a week, check the fluids and keep
the battery up.  Just think, only four more weeks and we will be through February
and what can go wrong after that? (Ha!)
Sure hope we can get some input from the club at the February meeting as to
activities desired for the balance of the club year.  We will no doubt have copies of
the Cruizin Calendar in our possession by that time and that will help Weather permitting, 
let’s try to drive ‘Birds to Spears for the next meeting.  That
lineup of cars along Maple Street makes an impressive sight!

See you Soon!!!


P.S…..your Prez is elated to learn that more of our members have said they are
joining the VTCI!

 And now…. A word from the old Bird:
Always read stuff that
will make you look good if you die in the middle of it.

Don’t Forget our Parent Club:
 If you have not yet joined VTCI, please take this opportunity to do so. 
To those of you who have not yet joined, you can get your application 
from www.vintagethunderbirdclub.org or ask Prez 
for an application. 
We simply cannot afford to lose our affiliation with VTCI!

Don't forget who helps make all our activities possible;
Vintage Thunderbird Club International, Inc. 
If you do not belong to VTCI, join today!

Prez Reviews The Dues For Youse:

First of all, our dues are only $25.00 per year.
Some have inquired about our Mid-Kansas dues setup.  We know it can be confusing, so here is a review and summary:

Our local chapter, The Mid-Kansas Vintage Thunderbird Club, Inc., is a Kansas
corporation which we incorporated in 2005.  We chose a fiscal year ending
December 31, the same as the calendar year. 
Our $25.00 dues are paid annually which means the dues are due January 1. But, we know 
many other expenses such as Real Estate Taxes, Quarterly Estimates, homeowner’s dues, VTCI dues
and almost every other club dues you can think of, plus Christmas expenses are due at that time. 

That is why several years ago our club voted to have our dues payable by April 1. Even though they are
technically due January 1, we don’t ask for them before April 1. 
This gives us three chances to pay at a monthly meeting before the dues are overdue. 
Of course, Treasurer Lynda can take your $25.00 dues payment any time before April 1, 
whenever it is comfortable for you.
New member’s initial dues are pro-rated according to the quarter in which
they join, and that proration is calculated on the January 1 starting date for the
club year as follows:

Jan-Feb-Mar    $25.00
Apr-May-Jun    $18.75
Jul-Aug-Sep    $12.50
Oct-Nov-Dec   $6.75
That pro-ration only applies for NEW MEMBERS

Old members cannot drop  out and come back as they wish. 
Our By-Laws state that anybody who has dropped out of the club must pay their dues in full to re-join.

Our club is a chapter of Vintage Thunderbird Club International, Inc.,
North Central Region
VTCI Dues are $35.00 per year, due January 1, and delinquent after January 31. 

The Roster of VTCI members is compiled from dues paid as of January 31, so please get your dues 
in before January 31 each year.

Unique In All The World: 

The Newsletter continues its series picturing Thunderbirds seen around the VTCI Regional and International
Circuit as well as local club events. 
With each Thunderbird  featured, you should see why the Vintage Ford  Thunderbird is considered to be 
“Unique In All The World!” 


“C’mon in,” seems to be the message being conveyed by this beautiful 1964
Lincoln 4-Door Convertible, a big brother to our Vintage Thunderbirds. 
The story is written about this Lincoln, that Robert McNamara saw the mockups for 
the new 1961 Thunderbird. 
He liked it so well he declared that it should be
stretched into a longer version with four doors and introduced as the 1961
Lincoln.  This was done and resulted in one of the most beautiful specimens of
Lincoln ever produced, and also resulted in an alternate design being chosen for
the 1961 Thunderbird. 
The basic body structure remained the same through 1964
with a similar one continuing through 1967.  The above Texas domiciled ‘64
appeared at the Starbird/Devlin show this month and the owner agreed that
many, many parts in this model are interchangeable with Thunderbird parts. So,
thanks to Robert McNamara we not only received a beautiful Lincoln model, but
a darn nice substitution in the 1961 Thunderbird!  Just a couple more examples
of Ford cars that are 
Unique In All The World!


 Corduroy pillows are making headlines!


Burma Shave Signs:

Remember those delightful Burma Shave signs from the 30’s 40’5 and 50’s that were posted along all our
highways (before Interstates)
and were changed out a couple times a year?

Five (5)  little red signs with white lettering, about 100 feet apart were designed to be read as you passed by. 
They normally gave warnings or tips about traveling.  The Newsletter wants to remind you of this fun 
period from the past and will run a Burma Shave sign each month.

This month’s Burma Shave ad:

A guy who drives
                a car wide open
                               is not thinkin’
                                            he’s just hopin’

Burma Shave


Retro Bird Watchers Alert!
2003 See Below!!

Big Bird Bazaar:
Cars, Parts and Services

Ads or sources of service for our Birds are free to club members, but business card size ads run $60 per year. 
That’s less than $5 per issue ‘cause we usually run 14 editions per year.   What have you to sell?

Cushman Corporation
            Speedometer Repair



                                          5404 N. Athenian Ave.
                                           Wichita, KS  67204
                                           (316) 648-2444
                                           (316) 832-9090

Autos For Sale: Wanted: Parts & Misc For Sale:
A friend of Prez passed away in November.  His one owner original
condition 1954 Chevrolet 2-dr
hardtop needs to go to a new owner and needs to be restored. 
It has been in storage for several years.  Butterscotch and white in color. 
Widow says, “no street rodders, please!” Call Prez at 722-2028 for
Wanted:  1955 Thunderbird Steering Wheel.  Call Prez at 316-722-2028 For Sale:  Easy-Lifter Top Remover.  Electrically operated
top lift which fits all 1955-57 Thunderbirds, and ’56 to ’60
Corvettes.  Electrically lift your top from your car and leave it suspended from the garage ceiling.  The manufacturer advertises in Early Bird magazine and others. This unit is
brand new, still in its box and retails for $399.95.  Being offered at bargain price of $250.00.  Does not work for
Retros.  For further details and/or to see the item, call Prez
at 316-722-2028
1959 Thunderbird.
Solid 352, Air Conditioning. 
Needs interior, new quarter panels.  Light Blue in color but needs new paint. 
John Moler checked it out in person. 
Seller wants $5,000 OBO, cash, no trades.  Car located in Bel Aire,
5904 E. 49th Street Court, N., Bel Aire.
Wanted: 1967 Thunderbird
wheel cover
Contact Tedd Roe if you know of one

For Sale:  Brand new set of 1972 Thunderbird wheel covers.
Original owner bought a new Thunderbird, drove it home and put the
original wheel covers in a box and put (non-Ford) snap-on wire wheel
covers on the car.  40 years later the car is gone, the owner is gone,
but the new car FoMoCo wheel covers are still in the box.  Full set,
$200.00.  John Moler (316) 942-7842
1968 Ford Thunderbird
94K original miles, 429 thunderjet.  Power
windows, seats, door locks, multi adjustable seat.  Seller’s father was
second owner of this car, purchased 
in 1976.  Became seller’s high
school car and it has been in storage for years.  Does not need
restored and was in great original condition but needs all new belts
and hoses and battery 
Needs good home. 
Don Moberly, Emporia, KS
2003 Thunderbird: Premium Edition.  Desert Sky Blue body and
hard top, black soft top and soft tonneau.  44,000 miles.  Has all
accessories, brand new proper vented battery, Price reduced to
$15,500.00.  Paul Jasinski  316-773-3645

Click on ad to visit VTCI!



February Meeting:

Our next one will be February 21, 2013 at 5:30 Pm
Spears Restaurant
4131 W. Maple
First we eat, then we meet!



  Current Officers

J. Rodney Wake
Vice President:
Mike Mawhirter
Beverly Wake
Lynda Fichter

Mid-Kansas Vintage Thunderbird’s Appointed Positions


Newsletter Editor:
J. Rodney Wake
Associate Editor, Proof Reader,

Club Photographer, Computer
  Guru and all around helper
Jack Wake
Website Coordinator:
Cheryl Thomas
Webmistress Design and Graphics
Connie B C
Wichita Area Council
of Car Clubs Representative:
Royce Taylor Royce.taylor@spiritaero.com

National VTCI Contacts


VTCI President:
Terri McNeill
VTCI Vice President: 
J. Rodney Wake
VTCI Website Director:
Terri McNeill
VTCI NC Director: Ed Elzinga sqtbird@att.net
VTCI Treasurer:
Randy Mattson
VTCI Secretary:
Bob McNeill
Concours Director: 
Paul Prokop 
Historian:  Dan Likar  sqbrd@aol.com
Technical Director  Alan Tast tast@earthlink.net



Mid-Kansas Thunderbird’s Website: 
VTCI website: 

 VTCI Chapter Websites


Chicagoland Thunderbirds:
Thunderbird Midwest/Minneapolis
Mid America Iowa:
Hoosier Vintage/ Indiana Thunderbird Club: 
Vintage Thunderbirds of Kansas City:
Thunderbirds of Manitoba:
Waterwonderland Michigan:
Indianapolis Chapter  http://www.vtcin.com