|Classic Used Oil Generators: 1972 Javelin SST|
By Vern Parker
Paul Bagnell had just turned 16 in the summer of 2012 when he and his father began shopping for his first car.
Like many teenagers before him young Bagnell set his sights on muscle cars as well as pony cars. Eventually a 1972 AMC Javelin SST was located in Pennsylvania.
Father and son went to investigate and were told the car had been languishing inside a garage for a couple of decades. As soon as the garage door opened Bagnell experienced a "WOW” moment. Right then he knew that was the car for him.
"I've got to have it,” he thought.
The odometer showed the car had been driven only 51,000 miles.
Originally the car had worn a coat of copper brown paint but somewhere along the line it had been resprayed with a metallic green paint. Father and son sealed the deal but they returned home to Bristow, Virginia without the car.
A week later the father returned to Pennsylvania, with a trailer, to retrieve the Javelin while his son was in school.
When new the car could have been ordered equipped with one of two six-cylinder engines or one of four V-8 engines. This car came equipped with the smallest 304-cubic-inch V-8 engine that develops 150 horsepower.
All of that power is transferred to the rear drive wheels via an automatic transmission. The gear selector handle, resembling something out of an aircraft cockpit is mounted on the floor between the bucket seats.
From the front to the rear the gears are Park-Reverse-Neutral-Drive-Second-First.
For that matter, everything the driver sees or touches is designed to appear as if it came out of an airplane.
Once the 3,118-pound car was at his home Bagnell began researching it's past. He discovered that the base price of his car when it was new was $2,901 and that it left the factory equipped with power drum brakes as well as power steering.
Between the bumpers the car stretches just a hair less than 16-feet-long. It is 6.25-feet-wide and the entire vehicle rides on a 110-inch wheelbase.
The inside of the Javelin seems to be covered in either vinyl or carpeting in a dark tan color. Bagnell has already replaced the heater core, the two-barrel Autolite carburetor and two new front tires. As his finances allow, improvements to his car will become evident he says.
Each door has a removable litter bag which was standard equipment on the Javelins.
While seated behind the slotted three-spoke steering wheel Bagnell has a clear view of the instruments including the optimistic 120-mile-per-hour speedometer.
He has installed an aftermarket tachometer attached to the steering column in order to keep on eye on the performance of the engine.
Bagnell has learned that his Javelin SST drinks fuel from the 13.2-gallon gasoline tank at the rate of 13 miles per gallon in the cooler winter months and 16 miles per gallon during the summer. Refueling the Javelin is done through the filler pipe which is hidden behind the rear license plate beneath the rear bumper.
After almost 54,000 miles on the odometer the young owner remains pleased with his Javelin. He knows that both rear quarter panels are plagued with rust and need to be replaced but that fact is fine with him.
"I wanted a project car,” he says, "and I got myself one.”In the meantime, as a senior in high school this year, he will drive himself to school in his AMC Javelin SST with a sense of pride and accomplishment