During the period of teenage years that I owned my second car, a 1970 Chevrolet Chevelle SS396, the idea of “washing the car” always meant detailing and polishing – including the engine.

The fun of the clean under-hood view was that it was a rewarding site to behold when talking with fellow car enthusiasts in a burger stand parking lot. We would typically open our hoods to talk about what we had done to our engines, or what we wanted to do. When you’re a teenage car buff, whether from the Muscle-Car era like us, or the Tuner-Car era of today, what’s under the hood is viewed as open ‘real estate’.

As adults, and in continuing lifetime friendships with guys from my high school auto shop class, we look at pictures like these and recall how a car wash meant not only the paint and body — but also getting things under the hood “squeaky clean” too.

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