Inside a garage, sparks are flying while Flint-area students are transforming a rusted-out shell of a 1934 Nash into a thing of beauty.
Beauty is a relative term.
The students with disabilities are part of a summer-camp called Detroit Muscle Driven, sponsored by the Disability Network and Detroit Muscle.
It’s a follow-up to the successful Wrenching for the Future program where students create a “rat rod”, a drivable, garage sale on wheels. It’s one part welding lesson, one part camaraderie and 2 parts creativity.
42 year old Mike Chamber of Corunna says he’s participating to learn how to be a welder and that he ‘likes to grind”.
The leader of the program is Richard Fruin, who’s become sort of a godfather of rat rods. Fruin has a national following, especially in Midwest states including Nebraska. He says he’s being inducted into the Rat Rod Hall of Fame. (yes there is one)
He’s shepherding the work by the students on what will be called The Nasty Ash Rat, a Nash convertible. He expects to display the vehicle at this year’s Back to the Bricks in August.