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Member Spotlight - Miles Hanshaw

Updated: May 17, 2023

What was your first car? His first car was a 1970 Volkswagon Beetle that his dad bought for him. The car was a thrilling surprise for Miles, even though it needed a lot of work.

However, his dad had a sneaky (but brilliant) ulterior motive – that bug would keep Miles out of trouble! And it worked, Miles was 14 and that car kept him distracted and busy for more than a year.


Do you work on your own car? If yes, what is the hardest thing you have ever had to do to it? Currently Miles has a 1962 Chevy Nova. Years ago he owned a 1948 Ford F-1 pick-up. Miles likes to work on cars and trucks, but he finds fixing automatic transmissions to be a mystery. He’s made some expensive mistakes. (Haven’t we all?)



Have you ever done anything illegal with a car? If yes, what was it they caught you for?

When he was much younger, he got a “few tickets” for exhibition of speed. One time after showing off, a guy on a bike came up to his window. He didn’t really understand what the guy wanted and brushed him off. He quickly found himself outside the car with his hands on his head since the “bike guy” had a badge. It could have been a nasty ticket, but the event took place on private property so the judge had to let him off.


What do you find the most fun about classic cars and why? Miles really likes that they are analog. Today, so much under the hood and around the car is computerized, but classics have more examples of mechanical craftsmanship and a feeling of hands-on that you don’t get with 1’s and 0’s.


What do you do for a living? Miles is a project manager for a computer software company.


What skills do you have that you are most proud of that you think may help others in the club? He is handy with tools and kind of a “jack of all trades.” He likes to help.


Car-related, what is your favorite activity to do among all others?

This club! Miles is looking forward to meetings and events and he likes helping members with their cars.


Tell us about something unique that happened in your life. It does not have to be car-related.

His dad has a knack of stumbling upon unique experiences. Once while driving along, his Dad pointed out a docked Goodyear blimp. “Let’s go check it out!” and soon they were taking a ride. Turns out the crew was getting ready for a test flight and they needed more weight – Miles and his dad fit the bill. Inside the blimp, the panels, gauges and seats were reminiscent of WWII cockpits. Mikes said that the take-off in that blimp was almost vertical and quite a wild experience. Thanks Dad!



Are you married? Yes, he has been married to Kathleen for nine years and she is the light of his life. He met Kathleen online!




Questions from audience:

What other illegal activities have you experienced? A weekend excursion with college buddies to Mexico took a scary turn when Miles discovered that Federales disapprove of tanked-up students dancing on tables. He spent 5 hours in a Tijuana jail while his friends raced over the border to raise the $560 necessary for his release.


What skills did you learn from your dad? Before Miles owned a car, his dad explained how to shoot flames out of exhaust pipes. That was something Dad regretted later when Miles was driving that VW Bug.


Have you met anyone famous? Yes, Pete Chapouris of So-Cal Speed Shop. Chapouris is known for many achievements, but hot rodders know him for bringing back the iconic speed shop, which had closed in 1946. So-Cal is still going strong today.




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