Publisher: Bruce T Nelson
Publication Date: December 28, 2016
Binding: Kobo eBook
As a young boy growing up poor in Lake Parsippany NJ, I always wanted to take things apart, see how they worked and make them faster. In 1963 my uncle got me a job, as a mechanics helper, at Mallon Pontiac, in East Orange, New Jersey. I got all the dirtiest jobs in the shop and was paid $1.25 an hour. The greatest thing about that job, if you loved what you’re doing and worked hard, you could see into the future. Within a year I was promoted to a line mechanic. We worked piece work. The only way you made any money was to work long hours, and you couldn’t waste a minute’s time.
Fortunately for me, Pontiac came out with the First Muscle Car, the GTO. I fell in love with the Idea of a small body with a big engine. I learned all the tricks to make them go faster. Over the next couple of years my reputation spread. I built many of the Pontiac record holders.
Mid-sixties came along I was now married with 3 kids. Big government start sticking their nose into GM, Ford and Chrysler, mandating a lot of new regulations. Such as, only so much Horsepower per pound of the car. New emission requirements etc. etc. Within 3 years it virtually killed the Muscle car Industry. To me it made no sense. Prior to all the regulations, the Big 3 automakers couldn’t build the Muscle Cars fast enough.
I knew at that point I had to switch gears. I was 26 years old and had to come up with a way to feed my family and pay my mortgage. I and put my life’s savings, $ 500.00, into an old truck. I set it up with my tools and used equipment. I started going to used cars lots and servicing their vehicles. My reputation grew and within a few years I had 3 trucks running daily and a small Auto parts store. But, I still would get the juices flowing every time I would work on an early Muscle car. At this point I would do it all. I worked 17 hours a day.
Early Eighties came along and I managed to save enough money to buy an old run down building In Irvington, NJ.