Last Friday, I went to one of my top five favorite places: French Lake Auto Parts (FLAP) in Annandale, Minn. This 100-acre salvage yard always has a great selection of early iron that ranges in the thousands of cars, and the inventory is continually changing. Owners Floyd and Skip Nolan keep unearthing new stashes of vintage tin, so the rotating inventory requires frequent visits. Throw in the yard's popularity and it also means that if you find a 1957 Chevy or 1941 Ford in the yard like your vehicle back home, be sure to get all the parts you need while you're there, because the car may be gone by your next visit.
My visit was extremely successful. I found some parts for my 1981 Impala coupe that I had been searching for over the past several years and some 1962 Cadillac parts. Unfortunately, all of the 1955 Cadillacs I had previously picked parts off of were gone, but Skip assured me there's a huge cache of mostly complete cars dating from as far back as the 1930s and up to the 1960s on its way to French Lake. I've learned my lesson and will be headed back very soon to check out the fresh vintage metal in hopes of finding a "new" '55 Cadillac.
The photos below show some of the cars present during my visit on May 10, 2013. There are some shots of cars in the main part of the yard that are getting as long in the tooth as a 1950 Buick grille (thankfully), as well as some of the cars (mostly Mopars and postwar Packards) that were part of a recent 250-car acquisition of project vehicles and a few parts vehicles. Read about the acquisition here.
Read about "Roadside Relics: America's Abandoned Automobiles" in this book
Go to the French Lake Auto Parts website, or call them at 320-286-2560.