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Backyard Ford Legend Eric Worner: Classic Restos - Series 41

By Shannons - Published on 25 September 2019

This weeks episode Fletch reveals the life story of Ford backyard legend Eric Worner. A man with a passion for Ford side-valve V8's. Inside Eric's beloved shed he built in 1968, he has rebuilt many engines, gearboxes, carby's and brakes. You name it.

He claims the shed is what every man needs, especially when you get to Eric's age. He says "it keeps your mind ticking over". He started his apprenticeship back in 1940 at the Bowral Ford Dealership, which might account for his passion for all things Ford.  Eric suggests that today's youth could benefit from having a shed or somewhere to pursue an interest. It doesn't need to be cars; it could be woodworking or spray painting. Just an interest that occupies them and gives them a purpose, it's worked for Eric why not a whole new generation.

Eric's life has focused on rebuilding and customising engines, and he has some simple tips on how to get the best out of an engine rebuild.

We recount his working life, leaving the Ford dealership at the end of his five-year apprenticeship and working with his father driving trucks. Fords, of course, a 1952 side-valve Tipper followed by a 1960 Ford side-valve Tipper, where his mechanical nouse came into play in getting the most out of these trucks. As he put it "we drove the hype out of them, treated like race cars". Back then the Ford side-valve V8 engines were great workhorses and were used everywhere in trucks, army tanks, boats and stationary equipment. You now understand why he's such a side-valve V8 expert. 

Cars have always been part of Eric's life, from his first car a Ford Consul followed by a 105 Anglia and a host of Ford models after that. Including his current daily drive a 3 litre V6 Ford Capri. He mentions a couple of unique cars a 1939 Ford Coupe and a Ford Special So-Cal racecar.

Erics says even today after a rebuild when you first start it up again "there is nothing like it".  Now, that's a real passion.