Travels In a Police Car
My entire adult life, my main occupation has been a police officer. I started when I was 20, and still in college at Norwich University. My first day, was December 22, 1989. Times really haven't changed much since then in terms of duty - maybe a little more complicated, but in general, the job is the same - you answer complaints. Anyhow, when I first started, the department I worked for was made up of boxy style cruisers. My first cruiser was a 1986 Plymouth Gran Fury, and after all that, it was Chevrolet Caprices right up until 1995, when the department bought Crown Victoria's exclusively. I've been bombing around them for work cars for many years, and have owned quite a few old ones that came up for auction. My latest bomb, is a 2005 Crown Victoria Police Interceptor - that I have a total of $300 invested in.
I bought the old cruiser from my friend, who took care of it mechanically, and the only known problem at the time of purchase was a bad (REALLY BAD) steering shaft, which Ford replaced for free because of a recall. The cruiser was originally a Danbury, CT police car. When it was being auctioned, they didn't do it any favors with it's condition for a good sale, posting pics of it in some abandoned lot and field where it was lined up with all the other forlorn looking automobiles - all but forgotten except for the paperwork that the city would need to dispose of and move on. Here are the pictures of it when it was put out to pasture by Danbury Police:
Because this auction wasn't online, it was one of those types where only those in the know would have knowledge that there was an auction. In the end, some car dealer bought it for $500. Mirrors were busted off, front bumper cracked to smithereens, poorly removed decals - complete with gouges, and flaking paint, and an interior that looked like it had been "Dirty Miked" - ala Will Farrells car in the movie The Other Guys. BUT - it only had 71,000 miles on it. Pretty good deal. The dealer sold it some guy, who put about 500 miles on it, then sold it to my friend, who used it to drive to work at the state police barracks everyday and a few trips to Maine.
Long story short - I did a few things to it to match my style, and not that of my friends, which included removing plastidip he had applied to the hood - something that he likes on his cars. It was not fun to remove. The edges came off easy enough, but the rest.....took me three days to get the stuff off.
So, steering shaft fixed, a fresh applique of duct tape to the cracked front bumper cover - this beast was ready for a road trip. And what better place than to roll an old forgotten car than to good old New York City. This poor old thing needed to see some action - so I thought a day trip to NYC would be a good trip for it - maybe a roll through the crossroads of the world, Times Square, and then back home. So, that is what I did. All in all, I drove 550 miles - states I hit were Vermont, New Hampshire, Massachusetts, Connecticut, New York and New Jersey. The car ran super - no problems at all. It averaged 24 mpg, and that included the city driving, which I did a lot of, as I dropped my wife off in the Bronx first, and then did my cruise around the city by myself. Here are a couple of the pics of our day: