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Dwarf Cars: Mechanic Hand-Builds Mini Motors

Dwarf Cars: Mechanic Hand-Builds Mini Motors


COMM: In Maricopa, Arizona, you can find a large collection of small cars. COMM: This is the Dwarf Car Museum and it’s all the work of Ernie Adams. ERNIE: I built the first metal dwarf car in 1965 out of nine old refrigerators. COMM: Ernie hand builds these small vehicles, and honed his skills making hundreds of dwarf
racing cars. From there he progressed to the more time consuming business of constructing
scaled down replicas of classics. ERNIE: It was in 1992 I built a street legal ’39 Chevy dwarf car. That was a complete car,
it had everything the real car had in it, on average it takes anywhere from two and
a half years to five years to build a car. That would be somewhere between three thousand
and four thousand hours. ERNIE: This was my first car I ever built as a steel model car. Something you could
ride in and drive and it’s got full instrumentation, the seats in it fold up like an old model A, so you
can walk into the back seat. COMM: Amazingly Ernie’s scaled down cars are fully road legal. ERNIE: My cars are not hard to get street legal because they’re not built from other
cars. They’re all built from scratch so there’s no other car body numbers or anything involved
in mine. People ask me how they ride, I always tell them they ride like a Corvette. On a
good road they ride real smooth, on a rough road they’re a little choppy, but they all get out and travel
highway speeds, seventy-five, eighty miles an hour all day long. COMM: Ernie is understandably proud of the fact that he builds the cars himself, even
if people don’t always believe him. ERNIE: The first car I drove down the road and somebody stopped me to ask me about my
car, he said “Wow where did you get that car?” and I said “I didn’t find it, I made it” and
he said “You made it?” and he said “Wow you must have a pretty elaborate shop to build
something like that” and I said “I live in a trailer park and I built it out behind the
house” and he was instantly very upset. Pretty soon he turned around and walked off and he
turned his head and he said “Sir, I’ve been a body and fender man all my life and you
don’t tell me you just go out in the backyard and build something like that.” ERNIE: Away he went. I was a little embarrassed because I just got chewed out y’know, but
I guess I should have lied to him. COMM: Despite several generous offers, Ernie insists his creations are not for sale. ERNIE: I even had a man in California offer to trade me his house. I have been offered
anywhere from fifty thousand to four hundred and fifty thousand for one. But they’re not
for sale and when you get up that high you’re just blowing smoke so. COMM: Setting up a museum to let the public see the collection was the idea of Ernie’s
sons. KEVIN: When people would come in the shop they would naturally say this is like coming
into a museum. So I told him let’s just make it a museum. I really love to see the people’s
reactions when they come in. My favourite is one lady come in and she’s speechless,
all she could say was “Wow, oh my God” and when I see reactions like that from people
it makes it all worth the work we do here. ERNIE: When we’re driving down the road with them, people will come up and they’ll hang beside you or behind you, they’re looking at the car or taking pictures of it, a lot of thumbs
up, all kinds of gestures. COMM: With the building seemingly at capacity, does Ernie plan on adding any more cars to his museum? ERNIE: I’m done building cars right now, but I have to finish the last one I’m building.
Everybody says I’ll build another one afterwards, and I know as soon as the last one’s done, I’ll get antsy
and have to start something so.

100 comments found

  1. This dudes my idol nothing for sale !! And if it's that high there usually blowing smoke out there ass !!

  2. I thought it was MORE difficult to get from scratch home built cars street legal. Isn't that why they always use whole or parts of the old chassis when building these home cars? Strange.

  3. I have a friend who is a little person she's only three foot five and she said this would be perfect for someone like her😸

  4. You spend 5 years building something. Maybe you would say its its not for sale too. He could change his mind anytime. Money is not everything.

  5. To the creator & I do mean creator of the cars . Awesome !  Why don't you go see Jay Leno & next is you could do a car that is more hard to find & may be Gems like Ford GT 500 & others that would just be WOW ! 3D printing can make things that are 100 & get the stuff you cant find to build off & do build more 🙂  Awesome & do enjoy them sir .

  6. Love your Dwarfs,Would love to see them,You've got real talent,I can't come see them I'm bed fast,But I can see them on you tube,Question if I may? Does your children have the talent and desire to continue your fabrications?

  7. Just a question but exactly how much does 1 of these dwarf replicas go for ? After watching the video I assume that it takes roughly 2-5 years to build one of those cars . I'm just wondering on how much they run for cost wise ?

  8. I always wished I had one of my father's cars because we had the best cars on Earth back in the 1950's and 60's. My favorite was our shiny new black Chrysler Imperial leBaron with the small rear window. I miss that one most.

  9. How do you even shape the metal? Just he actually make smooth curves, or whack it until its shaped and use body filler for the rest?

  10. So you won’t sell them… would you build one for someone though because I know I’d love a mini version of my car lol.

  11. I met Ernie real nice guy and his place is between Tuscan and phoenix AZ as you go down I 10 west when leaving Phoenix

  12. Why don't they build full size old cars with modern safety standards of course? I bet they would sell a lot of them and make a lot of money. I Hate new cars. They don't have character.

  13. this is epic.
    teach me so i can help continue this artwork.
    i will work for food and shelter.
    all i need is a fridge and a bed in the garage 🙂
    i know a thing or two myself.
    http://www.aadesign.no/trabakw.jpg
    worked at KB for almost 10 y and took all trucks apart and refit all after customers needs for modifications.
    i was the only guy on the floor with tools and 2 in the cabin painting all the time.
    i did every proces needed so they could just keep the flow going in the cabin.
    its a joy to just get the PERFECT lines. you can feel em.
    respect from denmark.
    "the airbrush artist is ivar .. check out aadesign.no "

  14. Wow that is astonishing! True american craftsmanship all the details of the original vehichle even right down to the engine

  15. Wow this man is an artist. To build a drive able car from scratch I’d even go as far to say you are a genius. Hats off to you sir.

  16. WOW much respect to this man.. But if someone offered me mid six figures I would have to sale one. but I admire your principals…

  17. An example of the creativity, diligence, character, and common sense citizens of this country formally had before being weakened by the progressive, feminist culture.

  18. I understand him 100% why he wont sell his cars, there are few things in this world that you cant buy and put a price tag on.

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