I looked around, and it appears that this doesn't occur; at least not with any modicum of regularity. Some of us have tools and know how, some don't and want to learn, and some just want to hang out and have a good time. Personally, I'm always itching to wrench but don't always have anything small to do or the resources to tackle anything too big. I read in the tech help section where a guy bought a Tacoma that maybe needed a new engine. He languished over it for quite a while, but it seems to me like the sort of thing that could probably be fetched from Jim's Yota Yard or something and swap it in a day. Less if there are enough competent hands... He just didn't have the know how or the tools. Back when I had my FJ40, I got together with some Rising Sun folks and we took an FJ60 from running/driving to a bare cab sitting on a bare chassis before lunch time! The only thing still on the truck was the wheels, axles, and suspension so it could be moved and the parking brake so it could be prevented from doing so. My car club back in Dallas started with wrenching days once a month where people who knew what they were doing would help those who didn't get their cars up and running so they could come to the other club events, and eventually hit critical mass to where we were having multiple sessions going across the metroplex nearly every weekend. Things as minor as simple tune up clinics to full-on suspensions, engines, and what have you.
Things I can offer:
-I can read a manual (an often overlooked skill)
-I'm a carburetor weezard (if you have carb-related emissions issues or altitude tuning issues, I'm your freakin' guy)
-I'm also pretty good with distributors (I helped Pertronix with the development of their SVDA distributor for dual carburetor VW applications)
-I'm great with diagnostics (provided there's not too much computerized electrickery mucking things up)
-I'm great tuning both gas and diesel
-I'm really good with electrical systems (again though, not so much with the computers...)
-engine lift and stand
-wrenches, screwdrivers, etc.
-specialty VW stuff if there are any bajas or rails running around
-specialty GM diesel/mechanical diesel stuff
Skills I'd like to learn:
-modern automotive electronics (computers, sensors, fuel injection, etc.)
-I'd like more metal fab practice; I'm decent, but I could always be better
-paint and body; same as with metal fab
-I'm always down to check out the engineering vernacular of various platforms. I've never been in a Jeep (mechanically) for instance.
Obviously, while this is going on, someone has to take care of cooking hotdogs or hamburgers or something, someone has to make sure the beer is properly consumed, sockets must be fetched, greasy things degreased, etc. I've found that in most non-professional shop settings (and I'm sure a number of professional ones) a leaner to wrencher ratio of 2:1 must be maintained.
Is there any interest in this sort of thing? What else can people bring to the table? Who has projects they need help on? Maybe a project that they don't need help on, but wouldn't mind some leaners? Something keeping a rig off the road or trail, some modification they've been gathering parts for, some major repair that is just too expensive to have a shop do....