Your CAR, your story: steve or­rell’s 1935 oldsmo­bile 1935 Oldsmo­bile has some up­dates

Austin American-Statesman - - D STATES­MAN CARS -

The ride: I own and drive my great-grand­fa­ther’s 1935 Oldsmo­bile Tour­ing Sedan. He and my great-grand­mother bought it new at an Ok­la­homa City Oldsmo­bile deal­er­ship. He paid $834 for it.

The search: My un­cle kept it in his barn in Cal­i­for­nia un­til it was my turn to keep her. The Olds has been in my fam­ily for 77 years and in my sta­ble for five years. I’ve made it clear to my chil­dren that I ex­pect them to keep it as well. Maybe they will be able to talk lov­ingly of their an­ces­tors and take their kids for week­end rides in the coun­try.

Up­grades: The car­bu­re­tor was re­built and the fuel lines re­placed. After nor­mal ser­vic­ing, she started right up after 40 years of dor­mancy. The new bat­tery helped. The Olds now has all new glass and interior, but I’m go­ing keep the ex­te­rior as-is for now. Her light ox­i­da­tion of blue and the few bumps on her re­mind me of my Swedish great-grand­mother try­ing to put the land yacht in her lit­tle shed meant for a horse and buggy. Rick Schirmer of Clas­sic Auto Restora­tion Ser­vice in Ge­orge­town is keep­ing her on the road. His pa­tience (with the Olds and me) and dogged­ness for find­ing so­lu­tions is a gift.

Past ex­pe­ri­ence: My other ve­hi­cles in­clude a 1956 Chev- ro­let pickup hot rod, 1966 Ford Mus­tang fast­back Shelby Tribute and 2007 As­ton Martin Van­tage. My shade-tree me­chanic skills kept many of my cars go­ing when I couldn’t af­ford to get a real me­chanic.

Func­tion: More a daily driver; an engine re­build will hope­fully be done by March.

First car: A 1967 Chevro­let pickup. It was a farmer’s field res­cue that I couldn’t have been more proud of. Any fender ben­der I may have nar­rowly missed would have only straight­ened out the fend­ers. She was al­ready pretty beat up.

Fi­nal note: If you come to Ge­orge­town, es­pe­cially on the week­end, you’ll prob­a­bly see me out with the Olds and a few friends. Be sure to wave!


Steve Or­rell’s 1935 Oldsmo­bile Tour­ing Sedan has been in the fam­ily for 77 years. His great­grand­par­ents bought it new for $834.

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