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Molly & Tim Frensko’s ’64 Comet

How To Successfully Pass "Newly Wed Test Number One"

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Tim Frensko knew there was something terribly wrong when his wife Molly wasn’t still jumping up and down after a few weeks of owning her newly bought ’64 Comet Caliente.

“How’s the car?” he would ask.

“Fine,” Molly would say. “Kinda drives like my Explorer did, though.”

It eventually dawned on Tim that what she really meant was, “It’s an automatic. It’s boring. Can you please change it?” But give him a break—they’d only been married a few months by then and he was still a little new at it.

Ordinarily, you might consider this a very heavy request, laden with difficulties—“Darn, I’ve never done a tranny switch” or, “This will take me forever to find parts for”—but not for Tim. See, Tim’s an automotive tech at a Ford dealership, so it wasn’t such a big problem. He’s pretty much seen it all.

Oh wait, there was one problem—he hadn’t built it all. And soon after he started, he discovered an annoying habit: perfectionism. This would plague him throughout the entire buildup. On top of that, the car was destined to be his love’s personal chariot, so not only would it have to be perfect, but reliable too. That meant the flaky original mill had to get the boot, making way for a hard-working, more sensible young engine with a refined taste for injected fuel. The ’87 5.0L Ford Mustang motor was a natural choice. Now, thanks to Tim’s handiwork, Molly’s grabbing gears instead of yawning, and speeding instead of getting to know the AAA tow-guy. Good job, Tim—newlywed test No. 1 passed successfully.

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