pat m 1954 Kaiser Darrin 2dr Roadster

The one that didn`t get away

A couple of years ago while visiting a good friend in the Toronto area he told me he got a phone call from a friends wife who explained she wanted to start selling off some of her late husbands vehicles who had passed away a couple of years prior. He asked if I was interested in tagging along for the ride, Of coarse being a car guy all my life from the time I was a young lad growing up in a small village in Nova Scotia, I started pumping gas and changing tires on pulp trucks when I was only 12, I jumped at the chance, the vehicle she was trying to sell us was a 2000 Ford Excursion with only 16,000KM (10,000Mi) from new, after seeing this brand new monster of a vehicle and the price she was asking we jumped at the chance to own it, although my friend was a Cadillac man, this vehicle was exceptional,at that point my friend asked, is there anything else you want to sell at which time the lady said, well I have this old car in the shed out back but it needs a lot of work, she said her husband had parked the vehicle out there in 1972 with the intention of some day fixing it up as a hobby, which of coarse many of us know how that story goes, we walked out to the shed and when we opened the door, WOW a 1954 Kaiser Darrin sitting in a time capsule, the car was totally complete and unmolested it sat there begging to be helped, my friend looked at me and said do we have interest in something like this, it looks pretty rough to me, I told him it would be a wonderful project to spend the winter on so he struck up a deal with the lady and a couple days later we went back with the payment and loaded it on a flatbed, of coarse this was not an easy task considering the car had not turned a wheel in 41 years, every wheel was seized, so we used some good old fashion dish soap under the tires to help slide it up the ramps. now the fun begins, we got the car home and started tearing it down(just as a winter project) as time went on and the more we took this great car apart we started realizing how original the car was and that it had never been messed with by any one so we decided at that point to copy everything we seen as we tore it down so we could put it back exactly as as we took it apart, being a licensed mechanic by trade and a bit of a self taught body guy(I used to do body and paint on used cars in the 70`s for the local used car lots to support my stock car racing habits) we photo documented every step, it turned out to be a bit more work than we expected but you know how stubborn `ol car guys can get, we went at it with a never give up attitude, I`m not going to bore you with all the step by step details but we restored every inch of this car in my 75 year old friends garage in the suburbs of one of the greatest cities in the world, of coarse my friend was the information specialists and I was the hands on guy, although my friend didn`t mind getting dirty when I needed some extra help, We finished the car up in the spring of 2012 with the help of another friend who just happened to be one of the best upholster`s in the country who has since passed on an decided to enter the car in a CCCA event where to our pleasant surprise we won best of show post war, what an undescribible feeling, the summer of the next year we took the car to Michigan to the Kaiser Darrin meet where it won again, my friend has since decided to scale down and moved in to a condo and sell his beautiful home on the lake front so the babies had to be sold, with the assistance of one of the greatest auction companys in the world the car was sold in Monteray Ca. for a record price. This was one of the greatest times I have ever spent restoring old cars.

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