March 14, 2016

Next Up in the Garage: The Mystery Machine

Bringing back fond memories of that iconic Saturday morning cartoon, Scooby Doo, Where Are You? Matt and Bill are proud to announce their next auto restoration project. They’ll be renovating Bill’s 1962 Ford Econoline van, otherwise known as The Mystery Machine. Our two mechanics pulled the van onto the lift a week ago up at Bill’s home garage, since the Firebird is still taking up space at the Do It Again Garage. Once the Firebird is sold, the Mystery Machine will take its rightful place closer to home.

Matt and Bill have already begun tearing apart the van, ripping out the rotted floor pans, removing the engine cover between the driver seats, and disposing of wheels, brake drums and several rusted body panels. At a minimum, they know they are facing a brake system update, installing a brand new clutch and replacing the leaf springs, important parts of the suspension system. Interestingly, The Mystery Machine enjoys a unique “three on the tree” column transmission, a type of manual shift that works in an “H” pattern – with 1st gear back and down, 2nd gear in and up and 3rd gear in and straight down.

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The original inside walls of The Mystery Machine sport a wild fire pattern, a funky design touch that the duo is considering keeping as a throwback to the van’s original Sixties counterculture style. Matt and Bill are still debating whether to repaint the outside of the van, covering up its “loud” lime green exterior, another sign of its groovy past. It’s an art to keep the delicate balance between preservation vs. restoration.

In the weeks ahead, we’ll be chronicling Matt and Bill’s progress as they move forward with the renovation of The Mystery Machine. We hope you’ll drop by the blog often while the work continues at the Do It Again Garage.