How to Remove the Grill from an Aston Martin DB9

My 7-bar grill looking a little tatty

The iconic grill of a DB9 is one of distinctive and signature looks of any Aston Martin.  The shape is immediately recognizable to any car enthusiast.  The early DB9’s were fitted with the distinctive 7-bar grill that has 7 horizontal bars.  Later models received an updated 5-bar grill.  Same grill shape, just fewer bars.  The 5-bar grill can even be retrofit to the earlier models.  The grill in the Vantage is similar, but absolutely not the same (8-bars and a different construction).

From what I’ve learned grills came in different finishes.  The grill in my DB9 is an anthracite grey color.   I’ve seen that a ‘polished’ finish was also available as an ~ $1,000 upgrade. Continue reading “How to Remove the Grill from an Aston Martin DB9”

How to Remove the Engine Slam Panel from an Aston Martin DB9

What the heck is a ‘Slam Panel’?   When you have the engine compartment open in your DB9 and you gaze with amazement at the V12 engine, the slam panel is the large panel right in front of you that covers the area between the front bumper and the front of the engine itself.   It has the cool little plaque listing the name of the final inspector at the factory that signed off on your car (thanks Paul!). Continue reading “How to Remove the Engine Slam Panel from an Aston Martin DB9”

Where to Apply Clear Bra Paint Protection Film on an Aston Martin DB9

The paint on my 14 year old Aston Martin DB9 is brittle and fragile.  If you look closely at the gorgeous Merlot Red color on the most of the front of the car, you’ll see it marred with a field of tiny chips.  I’ve had my share of cars over the years, and NEVER have I seen such a field of chips.  You’d think I drove all 42 thousand miles on gravel roads behind a truck with no mud flaps. Continue reading “Where to Apply Clear Bra Paint Protection Film on an Aston Martin DB9”

Where ‘ya been Steve?

I have to admit that I am guilty.  I spent my summer playing with my Aston Martin rather than working on it.  I have neglected this blog and the YouTube channel.   My apologies.

Earlier in the year my Sweetie suggested that we do a getaway drive for fun (did I mention I love my wife).  Coincidentally – two of the regional clubs reached out to me to join their gatherings, and just like that we had the makings of two road trips. Continue reading “Where ‘ya been Steve?”

Aston Martin Dealer Opens in Walnut Creek, California

It might not seem like an issue to those living in the UK, but here in the USA Aston Martin dealerships are few and far between.   If you live in a Major metropolitan area you usually have an option, but in smaller cities they just can’t manage to survive.  I live in Sacramento, California with a population north of one million, but no luck.  My nearest dealership (up to now) was 130 miles and at least 3 hours away in Silicon Valley.   If you are an avid reader of this blog you know occasionally I sneak my car over to the Maserati dealership in town, I just just heard that they’ve given up and are closing in September.

Laura Schwab, President, Aston Martin The Americas

I was pleased to have just received a form letter from Aston Martin The Americas President Laura Schwab (read the entire letter here).   It’s not like Laura knows me from a hole in the ground (I would like to meet her though if someone out there can arrange it).   Aston Martin has just opened a dealership in Walnut Creek, California.   For those of us in Northern California this is considerably more accessible than the Silicon Valley dealership in Los Gatos, CA.  For me its now ‘just’ 75 miles and about a 90 minute drive [half a day minimum out and back for an oil change still]. Continue reading “Aston Martin Dealer Opens in Walnut Creek, California”

Aston Martin DB9 Dashcam – Keeping an eye on things!

Last summer we went away for a long weekend staying in Northumberland at a hotel/country club that incorporated a Spa. When we arrived a hen party of young women, there for a Spa day, showed particular interest in the Aston as we checked in. After unloading our bags, I moved the Aston to the car park from reception and thought no more about it.

The next day we visited Bamburgh Castle and as I was locking the car I happened to look along the bonnet (hood) towards the Aston Martin badge only to see an indentation in the bonnet just behind the badge where someone had presumably sat on the bonnet for a photograph. I can’t say for sure that it was one of the young women but it was a heck of a coincidence!!!! It’s not desperate and most people don’t see it until it’s pointed out to them but I know its there and that’s enough for me to have to do something about it, I have a good body shop guy so I’ll get round to talking about it with him at some time.

On checking with the hotel it turned out that their CCTV didn’t cover the area of the car park where we were parked …. typical !!!

As a result, I decided that the only way to make sure I can see what is going on with the Aston when I leave it is to install my own dashcam. Continue reading “Aston Martin DB9 Dashcam – Keeping an eye on things!”

DBS V12 Volante Production Numbers – A Geek’s Guide

The DBS V12 coupe had been in production for over a year when the Volante version was first shown at the 2009 Geneva Motor Show. Whilst the coupe was a direct replacement for the Vanquish S, the DBS Volante represented a combination that AML had not offered for 10 years by putting their most powerful engine in their flagship open car. This isn’t something that AML always offer, but when they do the results are always spectacular and instantly desirable. Who can resist the pull of a DB4 convertible with the GT engine, the late 1980s overly bespoilered V8 Vantage Volante or the super-rare 1999 supercharged Vantage Volante Special Edition. So, the DBS V12 Volante is another shining example of this rare combination.

E11213 is a very famous DBS Volante. This particular car was used during the press launch and was famously driven by Jeremy Clarkson in Romania on a feature on BBC’s Top Gear. It is one of only eight UK cars with a manual gearbox – Photo by Tim Cottingham

Continue reading “DBS V12 Volante Production Numbers – A Geek’s Guide”

My Other British Love is For Sale – 1961 MG Midget Mk I

My Aston Martin DB9 wasn’t my first love.  It was 43 years ago when I met her back in Canada.  She’s been with me through high school, watched my career develop, carried my kids around, and always been a constant in my life.   But the fact is I just don’t play with her much anymore now that the Aston has caught my eye.

I’m talking about my 1961 MG Midget Mk I of course (not my Sweetie).

I’ve decided to sell her.  Hopefully to a good home.  I won’t go into all the details here, but if you are at all interested, or know someone else that might be interested please pass this information along.

She’s up for auction now over on the BringATrailer.com website.  You can access the posting by clicking here.   The auction wraps up Monday April 22nd, 2019.

As you might imagine I have developed a extensive WordPress site with all the service history, condition, and hundreds of photos and videos if you’d like to learn more (by clicking here).

 

Come Join me at the AMOC Western Canada Meeting

Please come join me in attending the AMOC Western Canada meeting coming up July 27th and 28th in beautiful Victoria, BC.

My Sweetie and I are going to drive up from California in our DB9 to attend this event and make a long weekend getaway of it with meeting some other Aston enthusiasts along the way.   If you are heading up from south of the border, please leave a comment on this blog if you’d like to meet up along the way and make the journey as a group.   Anyone in NorCal interested in going (and take advantage of the incredible exchange rate right now where $1 USD will get you about $1.33 CDN) ?

If you are located in Western Canada or the Pacific Northwest, please consider attending this well organized event.  They are hoping to get 30+ Aston’s of all vintages to attend.

They have two great days of events planned for the Saturday and Sunday.   Day one is for AMOC members and their guests, and will include some interesting speakers like Stuart from Velocity AP and Richard from Redpants.lol,  The event will be held in a beautiful setting.  All the details about the event are listed down below (thanks to Wyman Lee for sending along the details).

Continue reading “Come Join me at the AMOC Western Canada Meeting”

The “Goldilocks” Model

Evolution of a Classic Design

I will never forget seeing my first DB9 at the 2004 Chicago Auto Show. I was there shooting for a new HDTV series and was having fun looking at all the new automotive offerings. But when I laid eyes on this car, the world seemed to slow down and freeze for a moment. The noise of the crowd fell silent and I forgot where I was headed. I turned to my crew and said “we are doing a story about THIS car.” It was the most beautiful modern design I had ever seen. It was at this very moment, I swore that one day I’d own this car. I had no idea how I would ever afford it, but that did not matter. I just knew it had to be in a future garage of mine. Years later I realized that dream and nothing makes me happier than quality time with my Aston.

As a lover of classic car design, I believe that in the future we will look back at the DB9 as the “Goldilocks” model of this era. What I mean by that, is the design is just right compared to what came before and after it in the series. Continue reading “The “Goldilocks” Model”