The antique Ford sitting on Mission Avenue may be leaving the Peninsula, but not before a local machinist had some fun with it.
Rick Mourek said that he found the Depression-era sedan about 15 years ago. Mourek said that the Ford was rotting when a local showed it to him. He traded him another car for the antique because he wanted to try something new.
"The kid needed a car to ride," the machinist said. "I didn't have another project so I said why not?"
The car came to Alaska nearly 50 years ago, the original owner told him. He and his co-refurbisher believe that the car is a 1930 Ford Model A Delivery.
"You'd be surprised what's rotting in barns out there," Mourek said.
About four years and $13,000 later, the pair turned the antique into a drivable vehicle, he said. His partner, Ken Diamond, said that they found most of the parts on the internet and in trade magazines. Mourek said that they replaced all the body panels, fenders, wheels and tires, in addition to replacing the engine. He went with stock parts when possible, and looked for materials as close to the original as possible.
"It's not perfect," he said. "But we tried our best."
Diamond said that the body took a long time because he had to stitch weld it together.
"I didn't want to get any heat into the panels," he said. "It would have ruined them."
Once he got the car into working order, he did took the natural next step. Mourek took it for a drive, on the now closed Kenai Peninsula Raceway.
"The other drivers thought it was funny when they saw me driving my little put-put," he said.
After installing a seat belt at the raceway owner's request, Moureq tried his luck at bracket drag racing, he said. In bracket racing, slower cars receive time-based handicaps. Diamond said that he laughed when his friend's opponents sat and watched the approximately 20-horsepower car streak down the dirt raceway. He said that the Ford hit 50 mph on the highway.
Mourek said that he took the Ford out around six times a summer on his days off. The vintage car sat in his garage on rainy days and during the winter months.
According to the machinist, the sale period is the only occasion that the Model A has spent outside. The vintage Ford stands perched on a trailer amongst construction equipment and beaten pick-ups.
Mourek said that he sold the car a few weeks ago to a "young guy" in Anchorage.
"I thought it was high time to let someone else have some fun with it," he said.
Tony Cella can be reached at email@example.com
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