Einar Valsjø's 1952 Mercury
1952 Mercury owned and restyled by Einar Valsjø of Trondheim, Norway. Einar built his first car, a 1951 Chevrolet, in 1963. The Mercury was bought after the Chevrolet was completed, and much of the work on the car was done outside during the winter. Einar remembers that he often froze into the ice under the car while working on it. The Merc was nosed, decked and shaved for door handles. Dual antennas were sunken into the rear quarter panels on the passenger side of the car, a common Trondheim custom touch in the 1960s. The front bumper was removed and replaced by a rolled pan, and a 1954 Chevrolet grille bar was installed inside the modified opening. Canted quad headlights were grafted onto the front fenders for a more radical and modern look, a common Scandinavian 1960s custom touch. The rear bumper and taillights were removed, and the rear fenders were finned, extended and fit with tunneled taillights. A rolled pan replaced the rear bumper. Early photos of the car, taken before paint shows the Merc with a third brake light molded into the centre of the pan. The third brakelight was removed after the car had been involved in an accident. Under the hood, the stock flathead V-8 engine was scrapped in favor of a bigger 312 V8 engine from a Thunderbird. The interior was done in black and red leather. Red rolls and pleats covered the door and kicking panels, and the center section of the seats. The front seats came from a Volvo Amazon, and they featured Recaro/123 GT tilting. Einar's Mercury was completed in 1965, and according to Knut Svea it was the first custom car north of Sinsenkrysset in Norway.
Kjell Arntzen bought the Merc from Einar around 1971 - 1972. By then the car had been painted red. The next couple of years, Kjell drove the car all over Norway and Sweden. It was his first american car, and he also hopped up the engine a little. Kjell was living the dream, and the he used the Merc all year around. After owning it for two years, he wanted a 1957 Ford Fairlane, so he sold the Mercury to Rolf Rönning in Malvik. Rolf crashed the car into his garage door, so he had to rework the front end. The reworked front featured a narrowed grille opening and grille. Sometime after the accident, the roof of the Merc was painted black. It went trough several owners in Malvik. Inge Busch bought the car from Jan Strøm around 1977-1978. He paid 7500 NOK for the old custom. Inge traded the Mercury away in 1979. In the 1980s it ended up with Ola and Geir Jonassen. It was later restored back to original configuration.
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