The Norman Transcript


October 5, 2013

54-year old Mercedes-Benz an A+

NORMAN — Dr. John Dyer has a gift for educating people.

Typically his day as a University of Oklahoma electrical engineering professor involves exploring and explaining the intricacies of Space Based Augmentation System error analysis or Cardiac Electrophysiology research. This talent extends to other less esoteric technology as well.

“Just think of it as the standard gear pattern that’s usually horizontal instead is vertical so you’re moving the shift lever up and down rather than back and forth,” Dyer said.

He was demonstrating how to manually change gears with a steering column mounted shift as we went for a ride in his beautiful 1959 Mercedes-Benz 220S. The good doctor made it a snap to understand with words and actions. It’s a teaching method he initially learned from his Navy medical doctor dad, as a boy living in various parts of the country.

“When I was a kid my father had a 1957 Mercedes-Benz 220S with a bench seat in front,” Dyer said. “I would sit right next to him doing the manual shifting while he’d operate the clutch pedal.”

Still in grade school, young Dyer had a good grasp of how to smoothly operate a standard transmission.

That’s not all he learned to do with his dad.

“I’ve been working on cars since I was a kid,” Dyer said.

One memorable project involved rebuilding the motor on another of his dad’s rides, a 1962 Peugeot 403.

“We pulled the engine and tore it down,” he said. “He bought a head gasket and rings and we used cut-up cereal boxes with aviation Permatex sealant for the other gaskets.”

Another family repair was changing the clutch in the ‘57 Mercedes that involved a child-powered lever and fulcrum that didn’t meet with Mrs. Dyer’s safety standards.

“Mom thought someone was going to get killed,” he said.

Text Only | Photo Reprints
  • Water carry 5 Water Walk opens discussion about difficulties in obtaining safe H2O

    With large white plastic buckets upon their heads, two gallons of water sloshed to the brim and over the side, but the students trudged on down the South Oval. The farthest feat was to the Seed Sower, and as the sun glared down, heat ...

    April 23, 2014 1 Photo

  • Council OKs $48.8M contract for wastewater plant upgrades

    The Norman City Council awarded a $48.8 million project for wastewater treatment plant upgrades Tuesday. The council accepted a $50.3 million low-interest loan from the Clean Water State Revolving Fund....

    April 23, 2014

  • Transportation officials find more cracks in Lexington-Purcell bridge, but repairs on track

    State transportation officials announced Tuesday that additional repairs are needed in at least 96 places on the Lexington-Purcell bridge before it can be opened....

    April 23, 2014

  • Stacy Ford named 2014 Norman schools Teacher of the Year during banquet

    Stacy Ford, Kennedy Elementary librarian, was named 2014 Norman Public Schools Teacher of the Year at the district’s annual Celebration of Excellence banquet Tuesday evening at the National Center for Employee Development....

    April 23, 2014

  • Okla. House defeats bond issue to repair Capitol

    OKLAHOMA CITY — The Oklahoma House has defeated legislation that would authorize up to $160 million in bonds to repair the state’s nearly 100-year-old Capitol....

    April 23, 2014

  • Fallin signs bill for Okla. trooper raises

    OKLAHOMA CITY — Gov. Mary Fallin has signed a bill that would give Oklahoma Highway Patrol troopers their first pay raise in seven years, although the pay increase won’t come unless money is included in a separate budget proposal....

    April 23, 2014

  • At mudslide scene, Obama mourns with survivors

    OSO, Wash. — Swooping over a landscape of unspeakable sadness and death, President Barack Obama took an aerial tour Tuesday of the place where more than three dozen people perished in a mudslide last month. He pledged a nation’s solidarity ...

    April 23, 2014

  • Blood drive planned Thursday

    Moore Norman Technology Center, 4701 12th Ave. NW in Norman, will host an Oklahoma Blood Institute public blood drive from 8:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. Thursday inside room A109 in the main building of MNTC’s Franklin Road campus.  The OBI is in ...

    April 23, 2014

  • Local student to attend arts camp

    Kate Kemmet, 15, of Norman, has been accepted and will attend Interlochen Arts Camp. Kemmet, the daughter of Rob and Lori Kemmet, will study musical theater at the Camp....

    April 23, 2014

  • Coalition seeks more jobs

    A coalition of groups that encourage employment of residents who have disabilities hopes to double the number of placed workers by next fall....

    April 23, 2014