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Robert Kibbe
Robert is the owner and creator of The MuscleCar Place. His passion for muscle cars drove the creation of this site and the podcasts that go with it.
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Home > The Kibbe and Friends Show

K&F Show #111

May Bonus Show – The Last AJ Thrasher Built General Lee

Posted by on May 22, 2019 with 0 Comments

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Kibbe and Friends

Welcome to the official Kibbe and Friends Show with myself, Justin “Corndog” Cornette, and Show Producer Bernie McPartland! With this show we’re basically setting up the Boars Nets for the entire automotive media world to swing through for a couple watered down beers, stale popcorn, and fantastic waitresses. You can find every episode here on The MuscleCar Place as well as iTunes, Stitcher, iHeart Radio, and Google Play. From time to time we’ll also be posting video clips and full shows to The Kibbe and Friends YouTube channel.  If you click the “Download” link at the top of this post you’ll be able to stream it on your phone directly. You can also pull the RSS feed as well.

FOLLOW US ON Instagram and Facebook too!

Have a question for the show? Just hit is up:

Kibbe E-mail: robert@themusclecarplace.com

Thanks!

-Rob Kibbe

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Welcome Stamps.com!

Bonus Sponsor – Stamps.com!

Guess what – Stamps.com has joined in as a show sponsor! For those of who like to sell parts online (especially eBay), this will be right up your alley of time saving awesomeness. With Stamps.com you can access all the services of the Post Office right from your desk. You can buy and print REAL U.S. postage for ANY letter or ANY package, 24/7.

Right now you can use KAFS for this SPECIAL OFFER: a 4 week Trial that includes postage and a digital scale! To get the deal go to Stamps.com, click on the Radio Microphone at the TOP of the homepage and type in KAFS.

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The KF Show is on Patreon. The Future is Patreon.

Patreon Peeps, the May show is coming! Please send in your questions asap and we’ll get them locked and loaded for next weeks show for you. This has been our best month EVER for new Patreon supporters. Thank you SO MUCH! The future of Kibbe and Friends really is likely built around Patreon. Thank you SO MUCH to those of you who have joined in and also to those of you who have chosen to increase your contribution! We’re working hard to start finding even more ways to reward every level – with extra perks for those at the $10 level especially. The reality is, without you all this show can’t happen. Thank you!! To get in on the action and support the show with a minor financial contribution just click the link below to sign up.

www.patreon.com/kfshow

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MAY 2019 – BONUS SHOW

Hey! We’re off this week, but that doesen’t mean we can’t still find a way to put out new shows that showcase great former work (i.e. re-run old interviews you’ve never heard before). Plus Bernie is on vacation this week but was still able to call in from the bar at the Corvette Museum in Bowling Green, Kentucky….so win! Our guest John Byrnes told the story of rebuilding his screen used jump-General from the 2005 movie, and it’s awesome. He share this story on The MuscleCar Place episode 141 many years ago. Sometimes re-runs are just what the Dr ordered, right?

So kick back and enjoy this bonus show – and for our Patreon supporters please send in your Q&A questions for the list! Special thanks again to Stamps.com for supporting our show, and please sign up for your free trial THIS WEEK! Remember to use the code KAFS to get the deal.

-Rob, Bernie, & Corndog

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Interview run from TMCP 141……

This week’s podcast show guest is John Byrnes, the former owner of General Lee #51 from the 2005 Dukes of Hazzard movie (his car was the 51st vehicle purchased…thus the 51 designation). I first noticed John’s posting of his General on eBay, and while that listing is no longer available to link to I was incredibly impressed with his write-up of the car itself – he had clearly done his homework. John’s car has the unique designation as the only General used in the 2005 movie that made a manned jump (the rest were all launched with a catapult), and his car is also the one featured as the #1 most recognizable car in an 2008 issue of Hot Rod Magazine (in fact, the two-page spread in the magazine is the picture that you see above)!

John’s General, just after his landing. Believe it or not, even with a cracked engine block the car still (sort of) ran and drove. It was rebuilt to be launched again via catapult to get a better shot for the movie, but ended up never bring re-used.

During the interview John shared with how he came to get his General in the first place, what kind of shape he was in, and just how much work a restoration would be. John’s car was the last built by the famed General Lee builder AJ Thrasher (who had also worked on the Dukes TV show), and unlike the TV show cars, AJ built this General to fly and survive the landing.

He plated the frame rails, tied everything together with a cage and bars, and built a cockpit for the driver that would allow as safe a flight as possible. AJ even removed the dash (which drivers would commonly bang their knees on upon landing) and welded the drivers door shut – mainly because his roll cage blocked any realistic use of the drivers door anyway (think NASCAR stock cage). That’s right, this General actually did have a door welded shut, and as far as John knows this is the only one ever used on screen to wear that honor.

If you thought that the grille in the picture above looked a little fakey….you were right. It’s fiberglass.

John shared the details of getting his General running and driving again, and as a Dukes fanatic he chose to keep as much battle damage on him as possible, even going as far as to maintain the broken rear window (which was part of the movie story line) with plexiglass on both sides. He had to straighten the frame, find a motor, and basically put everything into the car that wasn’t part of the outer shell.

Most of you know that as a kid of the 80’s I still have an almost unhealthy fondness for the Dukes of Hazzard, and I will admit that I could have talked with John for hours about his car if time would have allowed. He ended up selling his General the morning of our podcast interview, and though he had a heavy heart he did the interview regardless – so kudos to him for doing so!

Thanks for the interview, John!

-Robert Kibbe

The interior on John’s General. The passenger door works. The driver’s side is welded shut. John fabricated the entire dash himself.

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