Hot Rod Archeologist Pat Ganahl has been tracking a long-lost customized and chopped Mercury with Tinseltown credits, but the trail on the ROD and CUSTOM: MYSTERY MERC! has gone cold. Help anyone?


I love a good mystery. Whether written or real life, some are better than others. The thing is, in mystery books, if you can’t solve it along the way, by the end it reveals who done it.  In real life, that’s not always the case. Also in real life, as you’re solving one mystery, sometimes others pop up. Surprises. Lots of people don’t like surprises. But they also can be good or bad. I like good surprises, and I’ve been lucky to uncover quite a few sleuthing.

That indicates that I also love to sleuth. I like history. I love tracking down lost hot rods, and learning their stories. I’ve done two books on it. I coined the term “Hot Rod Archeologist.” And what is an archeologist if not a sleuth, a detective? Yes, I’ve encountered plenty of dead ends. But what’s really fun are the good surprises. When one discovery leads to another good one, and maybe another one after that.

What’s this jibber-jabber about? In this case, it’s the Mystery Merc briefly seen in the movie The California Kid. When I did  http://my column on the filming locations for that film a few weeks ago, nobody could tell me anything about that mildly chopped, dark gray primered ’51– who owned it, who built it, where it went? Most people didn’t even remember seeing it. Remember, that TV movie was first shown in 1974.


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