An artist’s duty is rather to stay open-minded and in a state where he can receive information and inspiration. You always have to be ready for that little artistic epiphany.”— Nick Cave, Australian musician.

Ken Blaisdell, now of Gilbert, Arizona, didn’t realize he was soon to have an artistic epiphany when he found this 1963 Ford Falcon convertible for sale online locally. “It was a true 20-footer—rougher than I expected. All of the plastic dash knobs were deteriorated and broken from the Arizona sun; the seller had replaced the top, but left the original gaskets in place; he removed the old door gaskets but didn’t install new ones. The original engine had been swapped out, and while the evaporator was still under the dash, the original York compressor was gone. I told the seller that it was rougher than I had expected, and that I was going to pass.” A month later, however, “I went back and bought it.”

A replacement 170-cubic-inch inline-six, rated at 101 hp, now shines between the shock towers; a contemporary A/C compressor is hidden low beside the block

Inspiration for finding this Falcon came from Ken’s salad days in the early ’70s, when a used ’61 Falcon sedan was his daily driver. “It was ‘just an old car’ that served as cheap transportation,” he says. “I paid $50 for it, and drove it until the rear end gave out. I used to work on that one because I had to; now I own one and work on it as a hobby! The style brings me back to the days when I first became interested in cars, and it’s so simple to work on that it’s actually enjoyable. It keeps me in shape; I refer to all of the crawling around beneath it, the bending over into the engine compartment, and the twisting to reach under the dash as my ‘restoration yoga.

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