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American Road Magazine
Celebrating our two-lane highways of yesteryear…And the joys of driving them today!


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NutmegCT's Achievements

Day Tripper

Day Tripper (1/6)



  1. Thought I'd share an "epilogue". Here's my ol' Mercedes on the way to New Jersey, where it'll be repainted and rechromed. Mercedes-Benz will display the car in showrooms as an example of how reliable those wonderful 50 year old sedans are. Lots of mixed emotions seeing it heading away, but good to know it'll be cared for by "the experts", and the story of Mac and Phyllis will be shared by many many more people across the USA. Also, I've attached a copy of the story, published in the Mercedes-Benz Star Magazine this summer. Wow. Morehouse 45-49 V4.pdf
  2. Being a volunteer at the New England Air Museum research library, I seek out those aviation connections. EAA has quite a museum in Oshkosh, and of course the Pima Arizona air and space museum. Something I learned about points! If you reset the gap because of gap wear and/or follower wear, you've actually also reset the timing. So you have to reset the timing - or you'll soon have further ignition problems down the road. Ask me how I know! I've attached a photo of the distributor head, showing the worn cam follower. The wear drops the points closer to the cam, changing gap as well as dwell. But that 1960 system got me home again! Now thinking of "the next step". Tom
  3. Thanks Dave. They may be smiling ... but they're probably also thinking their son is nuts for driving that distance in a 50+ year old car! Funny - after the first day, I had no real car worries for the rest of the trip. Car was amazingly comfortable on the long highway drives, and absorbs the bumps of country roads without a complaint. Had to borrow a wrench to tighten the fan belt in Elko, Nevada. Drove to the local Ford dealer - about a dozen young mechanics all stopped their work and came over to see the car. One guy asked "what's that round thing with all the wires on the top?" I said - the distributor - and showed him how it works. Anyway - definitely the trip of a lifetime. Tom
  4. I did it! Yeehaa - over 7300 miles, Connecticut to California and back, just over a month. Old car - and old driver - still in one piece and ticking like a Timex. Here's the last blog post: http://nutmegflyer.wordpress.com/home/ Weekly updates are along the top, Week One, Week Two, etc. Still can't quite believe I did it. Wow. Tom Photo: Back home in Connecticut.
  5. Hi all. If you're still following along, here's the update for Week Two: http://nutmegflyer.wordpress.com/15-week-two/ Thanks for the advice and moral support! 2000 miles from home and still ticking! Tom
  6. Finally doing my long-delayed retirement trip. Spent several years restoring an old Mercedes-Benz, then had some health "issues", but I'm now 1200 miles from home and well on the way. Route goes from Connecticut to Utah to Washington state, then down the Pacific Coast Highway, back through Arizona to Texas to Tennessee and back home to Connecticut. If you'd like to follow along: http://nutmegflyer.wordpress.com/trip-details-daily-updates/ Just a sample: Tom
  7. After looking at your photos, and eyeballing the maps (paper and Google) ... you have me sold on this route. Thank you sir! Tom M. Eastford CT
  8. I was mesmerized by every single photo. Thanks for posting them. It's exactly the type of driving I'm looking for on at least half of my trip. Out in Montana, were there any steep mountain passes to work through? I'll be out there toward the end of September, but I'm not sure how the ol' Mercedes handles high altitudes and steep angles. Thanks. Tom
  9. John - thanks very much for that suggestion. I'd never heard of that 1912-1930 route, which sure is appealing to me. Is it primarily US Rt 12 from Minnesota on west? Tom
  10. Hi folks. I'm about to take my long-delayed retirement trip. Connecticut to the West Coast and back again. You can see the proposed route at the bottom of my blog homepage: nutmegflyer.wordpress.com I'll be driving my 1960 Mercedes-Benz 190b: I've got most of the routes covered, but would appreciate your suggestions on getting from the La Crosse WI area across to Spokane WA later in September. That's a long way! I have friends and family along the rest of the trip, but none between Minnesota and Washington. What scenic routes and sights along the way would you recommend? I have five days for that part of the trip, so I figure I-90 will be the backbone for MN to WA. All ideas and suggestions will be greatly appreciated! Tom M. Eastford CT
  11. At last, an update. I had to sell my wonderful 1958 Mercedes to pay for the unexpected expenses of 2011. (Cancer, eye surgery, two floods ... hey, don't want to get bored!) Spent a few months in the dumps but finally snapped out of it and decided that ... as long as my body is a wreck, I might as well get a "rolling wreck" old Mercedes, and make the trip after all. Make sure it's mechanically sound, but ignore the cosmetic problems. One ad said "Looks bad, needs help, but still runs." Just like me. So here's my "new" 1960 Mercedes-Benz 190b. Four cylinder, 90hp, 4 speed, lots of dents and scratches. Click on the images for a close up. California or Bust!
  12. Dave - thanks for the update. I think I'll pass on those RD materials. But now I'm keeping an eye open for 1980s AAA travel guides. As always, I'm probably going into overdrive on the pre-trip flights of fancy. If I were to follow even 10% of my plans, the trip would probably take a couple years. Something I'm finding more perplexing: I want to make this trip in honor of my parents, tracing their original coast to coast dream. But in my reading and research, I'm finding more and more things to see than I possibly have time for on this one trip. So now I'm thinking that after I return, I might sell the 1958, and buy a "less vintage" big ol' car (heavy sedan). Then I'll use it to target some regions in USA and Canada for further investigation on future trips. Maybe a 2000 Mercedes-Benz E320, or some such. Can't imagine doing a lot of traveling in a tiny car, despite the much better mpg. For me at least, something like the Smart is smart for commuting and shopping, but not for heavy-duty highway adventures. Tom
  13. Dave - that is a *great* idea. Thank you very much. I didn't know about those old Drive America materials; they could be very useful in recreating the route. I'll certainly take you up on your very kind offer. And if you're located anywhere along the eventual route, I might drop by in my 1958 Mercedes-Benz and buy you a Coke (or something stronger). Tom
  14. Truer words have never been spoken. As a retired network manager I've been known to be caught in "analysis paralysis" way too many times. It's likely my lack of patience with the GPS is due to my wanting it to be "perfect", and not leave me guessing (or worse). Funny example: I'm driving in downtown Boston; GPS is "acquiring signal". I pull over and park; see a guy with an iPad. Ask him to look up Fenway Park. He punches it in the pad, and in a few seconds I've got step by step directions for getting there. I faithfully copy down the directions, thank him heartily, and head out. First street comes up and I prepare to turn right. But it's a one way street to the left. I backtrack and manage to get on the street. Next turn comes up, and I prepare to turn left. But it's a one way street to the right. Turns out the iPad was giving me WALKING directions - not driving directions. Oy. Tom
  15. I feel like the old curmudgeon on this GPS topic. Feel free to delete this if it's not appropriate. I've used a GPS only a few times (borrowed from my neighbor). Every single time it's got me more bungled up than w/o a GPS. Sure, I can use it to get to Boston, but jeez - when I get off the interstate, the roads are so congested and twisting that the GPS can't keep up. Once I came off the Interstate into downtown Boston through the tunnel. Came up and GPS said "signal unavailable - please wait". The tall building had cut off the satellite signals I guess. Then once I used it to get to Hartford Hospital. Well, GPS got me to Hartford no problem. But it doesn't see the bus blocking the lane I'm in, or the "road closed" sign, or the construction and detour - and then goes into "recalculating route" while I keep driving into no man's land. I guess I could see using it on a cross country drive, just to keep track of interstates and highways. But I can do that with a $10 road atlas. Tom in CT a/k/a President, Luddites International.
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