Dodge Tourer originally bought for parts

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The Waipara Vintage Festival, held earlier this month, was a perfect place for Andy Munro to take his 1925 Dodge Tourer for a spin.
Andy, a retired farmer from Omihi, is the festival committee’s chairman. He also had three much younger vehicles on show at the two-day festival, a white 1960 Mark 11 Jaguar, a green 1973 S1 SJ6 Jaguar, and a 1981 Toyota Hilux 4×4. While at home, he has two Harley Davidson motorcycles.
The Dodge Tourer has been in the Munro family for about 50 years. She is not looking quite as sharp as she used to, but is still a showstopper, and lucky to be on the road at all because she was originally bought for parts.
Andy’s grandfather Hector bought a new Dodge Tourer in 1924.
It was used by the family up until 1937, when Hector replaced it with a new model, and cut the old Dodge down to be a farm truck.
It proved a reliable old workhorse for many years around the farm. They put light-weight chains on the back tyres which made it a more tractable and versatile farm vehicle, but eventually parts began to wear out.
Enter Andy’s father, Norman, and his brother, Ian, who found a cheap 1925 Dodge Tourer and bought it for parts.
The plan was to recondition the old Dodge with parts from the newer vehicle.
However, that never happened and the 1924 Dodge ended up stranded under a tree on the farm waiting for repairs, while the 1925 Dodge was put into service.
Andy’s uncle Ian used it for many years travelling between his two farms, and before he died it passed on to Andy.
About 34 years ago Andy and his brother, John, decided to rescue the 1924 Dodge as well from under the trees, but life intervened and both old cars haven’t had much work done on them in the interim.
‘‘They have been sitting in the shed waiting for time and money to restore them,’’ Andy said.
However, plans are now under way to begin restoration work. Andy hopes to eventually restore the 1924 Dodge Tourer as well.
For now though he will concentrate on the 1925 Dodge.
Mike Dickie, a panel beater from Waipara, will do the exterior panel work, and Andy hopes to do most of the mechanical work himself.
‘‘I’m not a mechanic but I enjoy working with engines,’’ he said.
He wants to restore the engine like new, but keep the exterior authentic, and doesn’t want a glossy paint job.
It is a big job but he is looking forward to the exciting restoration project ahead.