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3600 miles behind the wheel of a 1929 Model A on Route 66

Context is everything, right? For modern traffic, Route 66 is a slow, constricted highway, especially when compared to the interstate highway system. For a 1929 Model A, Route 66 is just the right speed.


Just as time and technology ditched the horse for the horseless carriage, those forces eventually bypassed Route 66 for interstate highways. Communities built along the highway withered while the traffic flow was diverted sometimes hundreds of miles away to newly-built freeways. Priorities for infrastructure had changed and no longer supported aging mining towns and farming communities; instead, Eisenhower and his administration sought to funnel the masses and their goods between metropolises with military efficiency.


Among the forsaken, recession-plagued byways of America, Route 66 became a martyr. Its meandering pavement is synonymous with the mystique of the open road, drawing those who crave an unpredictable journey and delight in driving for driving's sake. One such scenic traveler is Ryan Tebo, who has been rattling and rumbling across from coast to coast in his 1929 Ford Model A for the past two weeks.


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Nice story. I drove our late 1931 RS Coupe from Ithaca NY to Salt Lake City in 1999 when we retired. Nine days with only a slight leak from gas shut-off valve and a thrown fan belt as the only problems. Added water/anti-freeze each day and changed the oil every 500 miles. Finished the restoration, which included a major engine rebuild, only a week before. Did it in August - too hot, on the road at 5:00 am to avoid the heat.  Three hundred miles was a good day's drive.