Vintage Collector Profile: Murry Melgaard

Murry Melgaard has a collection of more than 70 snowmobiles!
Les Pinz and Murry Melgaard
Murry Melgaard (right) and AmSnow Vintage Expert Les Pinz have developed a great friendship collecting vintage snowmobiles.
First snowmobile you owned?
It was either a 1975 or ’76 Arctic Cat El Tigre. I had an old Jag as well.

Do you still own it?
I don’t own either. They were so crude back in those days, I don’t think my body could handle going back to that! Although, I wouldn’t mind having the Jag, it was fun!

How many sleds are in your collection?
I have around 70 restored snowmobiles. I’d have more if I counted all the sleds that are in various states of disrepair!

Any specific OEM?

Yes, it is primarily a Polaris collection.

What is your rarest or favorite sled?
I own a prototype Polaris Lil’ Andy. I also own the first aluminum body sled Polaris ever produced.
vintage snowmobile memorabilia
Not just sleds, the collection includes hundreds of pieces of sled paraphernalia, from toys, to toy haulers, old oil bottles shaped like snowmobiles, ads, and everything in between.
Any advice for someone who wants to start their own vintage collection?
Make friends with someone who’s experienced in vintage snowmobiling. Don’t always trust word of mouth. Having someone to help you identify sleds, and help you be sure of your purchases is huge. People like that aren’t hard to come by in the vintage world because most people are very friendly and helpful. We are kind of our own community.

Do you have any other snowmobile collectibles (signs, advertising, toys, etc.)?

I have a lot of toys and smaller items from the snowmobile industry. I’m always on the hunt for that unique Polaris item I don’t have yet. Just like most collectors I like almost anything that is rare or interesting.

How many of your sleds are in rideable condition?

About 30, give or take!
1958 Polaris aluminum prototype
Rare, All Aluminum! Melgaard’s pride and joy is this 1958 Polaris Aluminum prototype signed by Polaris Co-Founder David Johnson.
How many vintage miles do you put on per season?
I’d guess 300-400 miles each season. Not as many as I’d like, but snow conditions lately have been poor. Plus, now that I’m a dad, I do all the wrenching for the kids too!

What will your next vintage buy be/what are you on the lookout for?

I’m not really sure. That’s all part of the exciting process of collecting, I think. Something shows up that I’m not expecting and that I’ve never seen and that’s when I’ll usually decide to buy.  
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