Nelson Smith is the proud owner of this great looking ’46 Mercury pickup.
He’d always liked these post war trucks and this one drew him in back in 1978 when he found this Merc in a farmer’s pasture.
Nelson had a different attitude about this tough old truck-no matter how old it was it still had to work.
When Nelson found the Merc it was a typical project-full of potential but only after hundreds of hours of serious work. This truck was in, as Nelson called it, “terrible shape”. He towed it home and used the engine to slow the truck down because the brakes were non-existent-that’s how things were done in the late 70s.
Nelson did most of the work himself and the truck’s appearance 30 years later is a serious endorsement of his skill. Combine that with the fact that after the restoration this old Mercury was a full time work truck during the construction of a shop-clear evidence that Nelson’s craftsmanship stands up to the ravages of time and hard work.
Nelson is a lot easier on the old Merc now. In fact he and the truck are in semi-retirement phase so he’s not asking the 63-year-old to work like a brand new Ford one ton with a giant stump pulling diesel.
The truck enjoys a leisurely life now which coincides with its leisurely top speed of 60 miles per hour and preferred cruising speed of 40-45 miles per hour.That’s about the limit of a work truck with stump pulling gears and a low tech flathead V-8.
If this classic old Mercury truck takes 3 ½ hours to go 100 miles that’s the pace you take in retirement because the pressure of working is in the rear view mirror.
Jerry Sutherland @mystarcollectorccar.com