#10rides by Bailey Tire and Auto

#10rides: This Deuce and a Quarter has quite a story

Mark and the Electra at the 2015 Lander Fly-In

#10rides is a series highlighting some of the many cool cars and trucks touring around Fremont County. #10rides is presented by Bailey Tire and Auto Service.

Mark Hamlin of Lander can't help but have fun in his 1970 Buick Electra 225. The 47-year-old beast is 225 inches long (thus the 225 in the name) and is powered by a 370 horsepower 455 cubic-inch V8.

We'll let Mark tell you its great story in his own words:

"I used to drive a 1991 Buick Century Station Wagon. On my way back from a river trip in Utah, the wagon died not far from Saratoga, WY. I got back to Lander and started car shopping. After several weeks, I came across this Buick Electra in Worland, WY. Dave Bragg drove up with me to see it, and I knew I wanted to drive home in it. I bought it from Mel Treanor who is known as the 'old car guy' in Worland. He knew the couple that owned the car. Knew it had been in their garage for years. He spent over half a day moving storage boxes off the car before he could tow it back to his garage. It had sat idle in that garage since 1982. Mel brought it back to his shop in March of 2015. Over the next several weeks, Mel made the Electra road worthy again. New tires, brakes, shocks, radiator, battery, distributor, alternator, fuel pump, volt regulator, plugs, hoses, and greased every joint. He loved the car, but had another project he wanted to work on, and the town of Worland wouldn't let him cover any more of his property with garage space. Since he's working on more car projects in his retirement, he had to get rid of a vehicle to make room for a new project. And that's how I got the car. Bought it in July of 2015. Last thing Mel said to me as a drove away (and Mel looks like an old man version of a cross between the Lorax and a walrus - really), was, 'And don't forget to have FUN!'

"I haven't had to do much of anything to it. I got curb feelers for a birthday present. Had to install new head lights and replace the starter. Runs like a champ."

"Not sure where the car got a selfie stick or how it managed to get this shot, but what a pretty face!"

Things Mark likes about this car:

  • Lots of room to grab a group of guys to hit the Lander garage sales on Saturday morning. And plenty of trunk space for the loot.
  • The folks that come up to chat at the gas station as I'm filling the tank that I have to pull the license plate down to access
  • The twinkle I see in an old woman's eye when she watches me drive by and wave... I imagine there are quite a few date nights fondly remembered when ladies see a car like this drive by :)
  • The A.M. only radio. Back in 1970, FM was an upgrade option and from what I've heard, there weren't even FM stations to tune into in Wyoming back in the 70s.
  • Love the fact that this is my daily driver... well, except for when the snow is bad
  • The nicknames - Electra, Deuce and a Quarter, "leaner" - reference to the drop down middle arm cushion that was new in the 70s. For the first time, folks could lean towards the middle of the bench seat and rest an arm
  • The story I heard at a Lander garage sale one morning... Woman told me that her Dad used to work at Western Motors in Worland, WY and that he totally remembered the car, the buyers, and the day he sold it back in 1970. Her father now suffers from Alzheimers and isn't able to recall many memories these days, but seeing this Buick brought a lucid moment of joy into his day 

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"There is some room in that trunk. Maybe 'taking care of peoples problems' is a money making idea that would help pay for gas. Notice how easily a body fits back there with room for shovels no less! Or I could rent out the trunk as a room for transient NOLS instructors."