2008 Factory Five Open House

Last weekend was the 2008 Factory Five Open House. Once again, the pilgramage was made down to Wareham, MA for this gathering of everything Factory Five.  This was the third I’d been down for it and the second year I caravaned down with the local Cobra guys.

For photos and videos, read on …

The day started off very early, as it did last year. The local guys were meeting at the 99 Restaurant in Salem at 6:30. For those of us two miles away, we were able to sleep in a bit later then the guys coming from up north who must’ve left their houses at 5:30 or earlier. It was a lot warmer this year than last year — it was brutal with the top down for the first leg of the drive last year, but much more comfortable this year. (Last year the Miata’s top stayed up until we got to the Burger King meeting point on the south shore!)

Unfortunately I didn’t get any pictures at the 99, but this year I had the Canon HV20 I bought last summer, so with Jen’s help, I got plenty of video on the drive down.

Here’s a YouTube of the drive down, although if you’ve got a fairly modern computer I’d recommend hopping on over to the Videos page and downloading the high-definition version. Its 180 meg but worth the download!

It was quite the exciting drive down there. Next year, I swear, I’ll be driving the Cobra and not the Miata!

This year was interesting for me — I didn’t find the Open House nearly as exciting as I had the last two years. The first year I went, it was all new and I was excitedly imagining building a Factory Five, and spent a lot of time just being impressed with everything everyone had done.

Last year, I was down there for a very specific reason — looking for tips, hints and ideas for finishing my car. I was just starting the build and was getting inspiration everywhere. Compare the photos from that visit to this years’ and its clear I was really focused on details on the car last year.

This year was more annoying than anything else, for lack of a better way to describe it. I wasn’t looking for design inspiration — its a little too late for that with my car. There weren’t many vendors for some reason, so the deals just weren’t there like last year. And if anything I was irritated that my car wasn’t done to be down there enjoying my car rather than ogling everyone else’s car.

It was impressive seeing the changes to their space with the advent of the Complete Kit cars now — gone is the large open space in the warehouse where cars were stacked to the ceiling. Now there’s row after row of hardware. (I found myself fantasizing about having a five minute “spree” running up and down those aisles filling my pockets with bolts I’d surely waste weekends looking for over the next six months!)

Anyway, rather than picking out a few photos for here, I’ll link to the gallery itself. I finally fixed the gallery software, and with the addition of PicLens which makes browsing them much easier, that’s the best way to check out the open house.

2008 Factory Five Open House