BUILT from scratch, Peter Ryan’s 1922 Ford T is his pride and joy.
Bought for $3000 and now worth around $16,000, the car was first spotted my Mr Ryan’s son in the Sunday Mail.
“I rang the man who advertised the car right away, and he could hear I sounded very interested and send me a few photographs,” Mr Ryan said.
“I was sold straight away.”
Mr Ryan traveled from Mount Gambier to Birdwood to retrieve the car as soon as he could.
However, it took him three years to restore the car – stripping it to the chassis before overhauling the engine, transmission, front suspension and steering mechanism.
“The car is notorious for its bad breaking system, so that also had to be overhauled,” Mr Ryan said.
In addition new tires, upholstery, slacks in the roof and back tray had to be added to complete the process – not forgetting a new paint job off course.
Mr Ryan said learning to drive the car was a difficult task due to the absence of an accelerator and gear levels.
“The furthest I have driven it would be about 10km,” he said.
Despite it unable to be driven long distances, the much-loved car is used as part of the family’s every day life.
“Our grandchildren adore the car and we enjoy showcasing it at events in the community such as the Christmas street party, the Toy Run, festivals and on long weekends,” Mr Ryan said.
Memorable events include being used as wedding car and during the paddle steamer Marion’s 50th anniversary celebrations.
“The anniversary event was such a thrill as it involved the reenactment of its final voyage to Mannum, where the Model T Car Club provided trucks full of freight to ensure an authentic event,” Mr Ryan said.
He said their cargo was extremely precious as they were carrying a box of brandy addressed to the Queen.
Mr Ryan is part of the Modal T and A Club of Adelaide and the Naracoorte Historic Vehicle Club.