My introduction with the Amphicar came in 1988 while traveling home from Becky's house one day with a couple buddies. We came to a stop and we noticed this strange looking green car for sale in someone's front yard. We found this to be an original sea foam green German made amphibious car. The owners were selling it to settle their grandfathers estate. The asking price of $5000.00 was more than any of us had at the time, but I remembered it as a unique vehicle that I wanted to learn more about. Finding information was harder than I thought. Even though I worked as a parts man in an automotive service center, I couldn't find any parts catalogs that listed this car.
A few years later I decided that I wanted to restore an old car as a hobby. The memory of that Amphicar came back to me, and the hunt was on. It was 1993, before Al Gore invented the internet, so my search was confined to printed publications. Hemmings Motor News always had a couple listings every month. One month I saw an Amphicar for $3000.00 in southern Texas for sale. I sent a hundred dollar deposit upon receipt of two photos, not knowing how I was going to get it back to Michigan.
Thus began a five year restoration process. Knowledge was the first thing I needed. The Amphicar has some unique parts and systems, and finding some answers to basic questions was my first step. Gordon Imports was the best place to get parts and information. They give helpful technical information when selling parts-which are surprisingly still available.
My car has been "done" for about a year and a half now (two summers) and we have taken it all over the state to have fun. The pictures will help to show some of the nicer places we have been. This year was a little slower due to the birth of our first child, Claire. It didn't stop us though, and she went on her first Amphicar ride in Duck Lake at the tender age of two months and loved it.
I have met many great people due to owning this car. It takes a special kind of person to want to own one of these vehicles, and this is evident every time I meet another owner. The swim-in this year was my best opportunity to see other cars & meet the owners which are scattered across the nation. Next year promises to be even better.
The one thing I don't know much about is the prior history of the car.
If anybody has any ideas on the matter, or how I might scare up a whole history of this particular vehicle, I'd love to hear them. Just drop me a line at email@example.com.
HERE'S WHERE WE'VE BEEN CRUISING WITH THE AMPHICAR:
AMPHICAR CRUISES SINCE JUNE 6,1998:
DUCK LAKE (CALHOUN CO.) maiden voyage, LOON LAKE (MONTCALM CO.), DUCK LAKE
(MONTCALM CO.), CRYSTAL LAKE (MONTCALM CO.), GRAND RIVER (EATON CO.), EIGHT
POINT LAKE (CLARE CO.), STONY LAKE (OCEANA CO.), SILVER LAKE (OCEANA CO.), LAKE
MICHIGAN (OCEANA CO.), PENTWATER LAKE (OCEANIA CO.), LAKE LANSING (INGHAM CO.),
NARROW LAKE (EATON CO.), THORNAPPLE LAKE (BARRY CO.), WINDOVER LAKE (CLARE CO.),
LAKE GEORGE (CLARE CO.), LONG LAKE (KALAMAZOO CO.), LAKE HURON (CHEBOYGAN CO.)
and the CHEBOYGAN RIVER (CHEBOYGAN CO.)
PLEASANT LAKE (JACKSON CO.), CLARK LAKE (JACKSON CO.), GRAND LAKE (CELINA,OHIO), GRAND RIVER (EATON CO.), DUCK LAKE (CALHOUN CO.), NARROW LAKE (EATON CO.), ELK LAKE (GRAND TRAVERSE CO.), SKEGEMOG LAKE (KALKASKA CO.), TORCH RIVER (ANTRIM CO.) and TORCH LAKE (ANTRIM CO.)