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Featured Member of the Week – Caddyman Dan

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My name is Dan Gouker and I was born in Hanover, Pennsylvania. We still live in the local rural area in a small town called Littlestown. On February 23rd, 1980 I married my wife and this year we will celebrate out 35th wedding anniversary! We have brought two lovely daughters into this world and they have given us five awesome grandchildren: two girls and three boys.

I first heard about Cool Rides Online when I was browsing the internet for vehicle information but I can remember loving old and new cars and trucks from about the age of five. I ended up with a 1952 Studebaker short bed pickup truck which had been passed down through my family. It will be my retirement project to turn the truck into a street rod in a few years. I plan for it to be powered by an LS1 Motor/Tranny which I have already purchased. Right now, my coolest ride is an awesome light platinum silver 2005 Cadillac XLR roadster with a retractable hard top. It’s pretty much my dream car but I would still love to have my Studebaker truck all finished.

The Cadillac is special because it’s two different cars in one: with the top up it’s a sharp-looking coupe and, when you drop the top, it’s an awesome convertible roadster. The XLR’s futuristic bodylines have a style that turns the heads. It has all the luxury of the well-known Cadillac brand and it handles and rides like you own the road. The most difficult modification that I’ve made would have to be getting the wiring correct in order to make sure the wind restrictor and door sill lights stay on for car shows.

Being that there were only 16,652 of the vehicles built between 2004 and 2009 (at the Corvette plant in Bowling Green, Kentucky), I truly believe that they will become real Collector’s Classic cars in the future! A number of the people that own these cars have named them so I’ve named mine “Roxy” – because she’s like a super sexy model.

Right now, I don’t plan on adding any additional work to the car but my wife and I are planning our 35th anniversary trip down to Myrtle Beach, South Carolina. On the way back home we will be joining other XLR owners with their XLR rides in Kitty Hawk, North Carolina with the plan to see some sights, take pictures, eat at diners, and just spend some time together.

So far, my favorite memory with the Cadillac has been a trip to Bowling Green, Kentucky that we took in September 2013 for a 10 year homecoming that celebrated the very first Cadillac XLR coming off the line in the Corvette plant. We got to tour the plant and then they held a car show in the parking lot. Later on that same weekend we toured the National Corvette Museum  – yes, that’s where the floor caved in and swallowed up five of the Corvettes!

One thing that I do when putting my car away for the winter is use a battery tender because the XLRs draw the battery down when not being driven. I also worry about mice because it’s being stored in a garage. I had read on the internet that mice don’t like the smell of fabric softener sheets so I use them to keep the mice away.  During storage I’d also recommend purchasing a car cover to protect the paint finish from dust and dirt as well as deflating the tires by 2-4lbs. I make sure to put some high octane gas antifreeze or storage treatment into my gas as well because it weakens over time.

Overall, I am an enthusiast when it comes to antique cars, hot rods, lead sleds, customs, classics, muscle cars, and just about all types of show vehicles there are. I really enjoy taking my XLR to local car shows and cruise-ins not only to show off my car but also to check out all the other awesome vehicles and mingle with fellow enthusiasts. Currently, I am a member of the Studebaker Club, King Caddy Daddy, Cadillac LaSalle, Cadillac Allante, AACA Museum, and Cadillac XLR Club Forum where I stay in touch with other XLR owners for XLR car show info, trip gatherings, meetings, and chats. If YOU own an XLR or XLR-V and are not a member, please visit the site to register your car and meet some great people.

Thank you!

Caddyman Dan

 

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