An Afternoon on Mission Bay with a 1951 Mercury Hot Rod
San Diego has some of the best in classic cars and hot rods. The Southern California area has a large number of car shows all full with some of America's finest classics. Come with us as we take an afternoon on Mission Bay to get some photos of an amazing 51 Mercury Hot Rod.
Mission Bay San Diego is an amazine place. For anyone who knows the California coast once you head west one block from the ocean you are in streets and suburbs, Very few places offer blocks of parks off the beach area, or in this case 4,000 acres of the most beautiful palm trees, green grass and water spots in Southern California and quite possbly in the world.
What better place to photograph 2 amazing hot rods including a 1951 Orange Mercury Hot Rod and a 1953 2 Door Ford Wagon.
Come with us as we spend a couple hours with a 1951 Ford Mercury and owner Walt Clemens, who by hand built this car over a 28 year period.
The details and notes from the owner are below the photos.
This project started twenty nine years ago, and took 28 years to complete. Just by chance a friend of my son's, Arnold, found an ad in the paper: "FOR SALE" 51 Merc. 2 Doors.
I always wanted a 51 Mercury so I went to look and $900.00 later it was mine. I took it home and then realized I needed a garage, more tools, more money & more time.
So I built a garage with a pit, then I thought I could get someone else to do the body work....yea! Sure, Sure, Sure, what a joke! The more I talked to people about doing the work, the more I realized I had a problem...I was going to have to do the work myself.
This is the end results of my labor Body: 51 Mercury Steel, Ford Motor Frame 77 Chevy Malibu Body Mods Chopped top 3 3/4" & back 7 inch Removed "B" pillar all stock chrome was removed and new chrome made by owner Dip drip was removed from doors, all seams filled on panels sides Lights: fromt 54 Ford back: 52 Lincoln Grill: 52 Desoto Bumper: 53 Desoto Engine: 350 Crate Motor - Edelbrock intake and carb, Sanderson Headers, Mallory distributer Vintage Air Serpentine System in front Steering: Stock Chevy Flaming River Column Trance: 350 Chevy with shift kit Gauges: Dolphen Black Faced Interior: front seat 90 Chevy - pick up Back seat arm rest built by owner 39 Frod tail lights on arm rest Front brakes: 11 inch Lincoln Disc Front tires: 670-15 B.F. Goodrich Back tires: 215-75 Coker
Special Thanks to my special friends for their help cheering me on. Jose Aguilar, "My right hand I needed" Joe Arreguin J & V Automotive Chula Vista Dave Seward Direct Sheet Metal Tony Decosta & Jesse Amezcua Painters Javier Carrillo Upholstry Danny Islas M<echanic Ariel Uribe Electrician
Photos by Sean Callahan for SoCal Beaches Magazine
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