Let the Hack Mechanic’s Ran When Parked Inspire Your BMW Adventure
You won’t be able to put this book down and when you finish, you just might do something stupid.
Rob Siegel is a BMW fanatic of the highest order, and we’d be willing to wager that nobody knows the Neue Klasse cars better than this adventurous old soul. He’s now written four books, and this one is his third (the fourth is as yet unpublished, due out on the 20th of June) entitled Ran When Parked: How I Resurrected a Decade-Dead 1972 BMW 2002tii and Road-Tripped it a Thousand Miles Back Home and How You Can, Too.
Yes, that is a very long title for a book — especially a book with just 199 pages — but nobody would ever accuse Rob of not having enough words to describe something. It is worth noting, however, that this is not the Robert Siegel that co-hosts NPR’s All Things Considered with Audie Cornish. No, this Rob Siegel is a long-time contributor to the BMWCCA’s Roundel magazine and a first-class adventure addict.
As you can gather from the title, Rob embarked on a rather inadvisable automotive adventure to revive an avocado green 2002tii that he lovingly dubbed “Louie.” Rob occasionally falls into a new car without really intending to and if you’ve ever owned more than one classic car, you’ll understand how. That is exactly what happened with Louie here.
Once he’d bought the car based solely on photographs, he set about planning how to get it home. Through the generosity of a fellow Neue Klasse fanatic, a plan was devised where he would drive down, fix the car up as best as you can in a few days of wrenching, and then drive it back home. As you have gathered from the title of the book, the trip was a success, but there were so many trials and tribulations along the way that the story really needs to be read. Besides, Rob is a good-enough scribe to craft otherwise-boring revelations into an interesting plot point.
In addition to an interesting story and an author with an uncanny ability to fill a page with interesting words, this book also has a metric ton of excellent how-to information of all kinds in regards to BMW’s iconic 2002. If you’ve ever wanted to know the processes to completely overhaul an ancient Kugelfisher injection system or if you’ve longed for the information needed to tell an early tii from a late tii or if you have wondered if you could craft a makeshift air compressor from a length of hose, a couple fittings, and the spare tire from your rental car (Hint: You absolutely cannot), then this book belongs on your shelf.
Siegel, through the course of this book, is the stand-in automotive everyman in which we can all see ourselves. You’ll finish this book and think “I could do that” more than once. A word of caution, perhaps, as buying this book could lead to a long road trip in a 45-year-old car with no heat, you might kludge a repair in the name of expediency, or you might learn a skill you otherwise could have lived without.
If you can live with that, then pick up a copy of Rob’s book (and we highly recommend his first book, Memoirs of a Hack Mechanic as well). You can get a personally inscribed copy direct from robsiegel.com or from Amazon.com for that lovely Prime 2-day shipment.
Photos: Rob Siegel’s Facebook