Teens Restore Classic Cars

IMG_0532 It’s a warm September afternoon and in the middle of a driveway on the very edge of the City of Saco, is a pristine, newly painted black metal frame of what used to be a mechanical beauty from nearly 60 years ago. Exposed on the frame is the beating heart of the machine, that is spewing fumes from it’s exhaust for the first time in many years. About ten feet away, underneath a large blue tarp in front of the garage door, is the rotted shell patiently waiting to be united with its other half.

This is the house of young mechanic Will Morris, a senior, who is hard at work in his driveway,  is working on bringing an old Chevy 210 back to life. Morris’ dad is impressed by the countless hours his son has invested, and that his son has done most of the project on his own.

Antique Cars are defined as cars that are over 25 years of age, according to the Antique Automobile Club of America. Classic cars are unique, beautiful and have a high rarity. There are differences between antique and classic cars.  An old expression is, “classic cars may be antiques, but not all antiques are classics.” What this means is that, a car can indeed be old, but that doesn’t make it a classic car. Antique Cars may not be as popular among the younger demographic due to the expense of building them, but this years annual Portland Motor Club car show reached a new record number of cars that were involved in the show,  with over 300 cars involved.

Morris, spends much of his time after school restoring this historical automobile. Morris has been working on cars since he was in the 4th grade, when he had to change a fuel pump on a car with spare parts that he found inside his garage.

Recently he has been hard at working on many projects, but one in particular stands out from all the others. Morris is currently working on a 1956, Chevrolet 210.

“The biggest problem when restoring antique cars, is that they are money pits, they are very expensive to finance, but it also depends on the kind of car,” he said.

David Kittredge, who graduated in 2013 also has a passion for classic cars. “My dad had me working on cars with him from birth and I always loved awesome, loud cars that I saw anywhere. I always love seeing a big smile  when I drive past someone who appreciates the car and the amount of work that has gone into that car.”

He believes car restoration is important because “just like any piece of history  [it’s important to] save it for other people to see.”

Local mechanic Alan Roberge, has been working on cars for several years now. Roberge said, “You know, it’s funny to look back and remember all of the old cars that were worth practically worth nothing, and now some are worth hundreds of thousands of dollars. I mean we used to take these cars and drove them into the ground, now people are spending so much just to bring them back.” Roberge is currently working on a restoring his second car.

Recently Owen Elliott, senior, finished restoring a 1923 Ford Bucket. When he first started the restoration, it was with his grandfather. When his grandfather bought the car, it was purple with fiberglass molded seats.  It had a purple steering wheel, and even purple valve covers.

The first thing that Owen and his Grandfather did was find someone to paint the car, because his grandfather hated color.  They put all new chrome piece on, mounted the speakers in place, but then Owen’s grandfather died. Owen decided to continue the restoration on his own.

“I remembered everything he taught me and I was able to get it done. Every time I would work on it all I could picture was him there helping me out. I know now that he might not be with me on earth, but he is definitely still watching over me.”

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One Response to Teens Restore Classic Cars

  1. Josh Cash May 13, 2016 at 12:21 pm #

    I think this page is pretty cool to learn about older cars and antiques. They tell you a lot of info on Antiques about restoring older cars.And it also shows how restoring a car with some one could mean a lot or bring you and them closer.

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