DECEMBER 31, 2013 (JANUARY 2014): ’47 OLDSMOBILE-A CAR GUY LEAVES A LEGACY RIDE BEHIND

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Alan Davies was the definitive car guy because he lived and breathed old iron so he was never without a classic ride in the garage.

 

Ken Davies knew what to do with his dad’s last ride.

 

Ken explained how his father’s ’47 Oldsmobile came to be the property of the Reynold’s Museum in Westaskiwin, Alberta Canada.

 

 

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The story began decades ago as Ken recalled, “Dad was a hot-rodder first. He hung out with a group of guys racing cars at the local speedway but then he got married so the hot rods got retired”.

 

Ken explained how the car bug came back for his dad, “He got involved with the hot rod guys again and ended up working on a ’38 Plymouth hot rod”. The hook was set again for the confirmed car guy.

 

The next step was to get back in the game and Alan picked this 1947 Oldsmobile as Ken explained, “He didn’t have a ’47 so he bought this Olds torpedo back in the early nineties. It had 74,000 miles on it and it was a pretty solid car”.

 

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Oldsmobiles had an automatic transmission option but very few buyers popped on the expensive but convenient system after the war. This Olds has it and it works well with the 238 cubic inch L-head six-cylinder engine under the hood.

 

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Ken was amazed by the old power train, “You can hardly hear it running, it’s amazingly smooth”. Former hot rod guy Alan was also sold on the more benign pace behind the wheel of his Olds, “He used to like to drive it because it was a parade car..nice and smooth”.

 

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Alan was a big supporter of the annual History Road show at the Reynolds Museum as Ken explained, “He’d been coming there for years , he really liked the show and the people involved with it”.

 

The museum accepts donations and Alan decided to give the car to the museum back in 2007. He passed away in March 2012 but the legacy of this car lives on at the museum where it becomes a both public display and a memorial for a guy who bled 30-weight oil.

 

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Ken has a huge attachment to the ’47 Olds even though he admits, “My older brother was a car guy and I’m not but I learned a bit over the years from the family connection”.

 

Despite his lack of “car guy” instincts, Ken was honored to accept an invitation from his dad’s car club to do a lap on the parade circuit at the museum, “The guys from the Cruisers asked me if I’d do a last lap for Dad. It was quite a thrill to do the lap”.

 

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Legacy cars often face an uncertain future after the owner is gone. They can stay in the family if a motivated son or daughter wants the old ride or they get sold in an estate sale.

 

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The third option is the one that Alan Davies chose and it clearly worked for Ken because he knows that his dad’s memory will live on forever in this ’47 Oldsmobile.

 

Jerry Sutherland

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