CUT BANK – Nestled just miles from Glacier National Park is a field full of vehicles.
The metal, wheels, and parts are much more than just a salvage yard.
It’s Rustless in Montana.
“A lot of time, a lot of work, and a lot of money,” co-owner Merle Shortman explained.
Three self-proclaimed “car guys” are partners in a journey through history, as seen from the driver’s seat.
Rustless in Montana co-owners David Bell, Shane Hegle, and Merle Shortman pooled their years of knowledge, experience, and resources to liquidate the inventory of the longstanding salvage and wreckage yard owned by Jim and JoAn Printy.
Health issues prompted the Printy’s to sell the inventory they’d gathered since the 1960’s.
“There’s a lot of treasures here,” Hegle said.
“If these cars could talk and tell their stories, that’d be fantastic,” Bell added.
Hundreds of vehicles are now going to auction, thanks to hundreds of hours of work.
Each vehicle has a story, a piece of history it represents.
“We want to find people who can use this stuff and preserve history,” Bell said.
“We’ve got your Pintos, we’ve got your Cougars, we’ve got Mustangs, Fords, Chevys, Dodges, years that vary from early teens, some of the twenties,” explained Hegle. “We have about anything anybody could imagine that might be willing to be looked at. We have a museum, but it’s for sale.”
From buses to cars and even gas pumps, the field has provided the grounds for a treasure hunt, and unique mysteries from decades past.
“What the heck is that car? Turns out it’s a 1967 Fiat 500, and it looks like a clown car almost, but it was striking. The more we looked at that car, it’s going to be one of our prized cars,” Bell said. “One of the most interesting pieces we found was this 1954 Pontiac motorhome. We thought it was just an old trailer house and we get to looking at it, it’s a full blown motorhome.”
When preparing the yard for auction, some cars needed to be crushed and scrap metal and parts from those cars will be sold, helping preserve history in other vehicles.
“There was a lot of cars that we crushed, old oil field equipment, tanks, so we’re selling what we can,” Bell explained.
Inspiring nostalgia, Rustless in Montana provides an intriguing opportunity for discovery for antique, history, and car lovers alike.
The Rustless in Montana auction is Saturday, August 26th, starting at 9 a.m. near Cut Bank.
This will be the first of two auctions. Rustless in Montana is planning a second auction next year to sell even more inventory from another yard west of Cut Bank.
You can find more information about Rustless in Montana including contact information and directions by looking them up on Facebook or checking out their website here.
Shannon Newth reporting for MTN.