July 1925 - December 1970
Gus Wilson's Model Garage
written by Martin Bunn
Who, exactly, was this guy Martin Bunn?
I've researched the name of Martin Bunn, author of the "Gus and the Model Garage" series and have found nothing substantial save for this notation from the internet. It sounds correct. If you know of any other information e-mail me at the link at the bottom of the page:
Addendum: February 2012
I received the most amazing e-mail from Ron Benrey, the last Martin Bunn. He generously agreed to write down his recollections of the final days of the Model Garage as well as some insights into the whole creative process at Popular Science. Here's the article "The Last Martin Bunn"
Here is that notation from the internet:
We never found out precisely where the Model Garage was located, though it was presumably in the northern US somewhere. Gus was unmarried, liked to hunt and fish, and was a highly-respected man in his community. His young assistant, Stan Hicks, was never identified as anything but "Gus' young assistant." Nobody else seems to have worked there.
The forward reads:
"In July, 1925, a gruff, gray-haired mechanic appeared feet-first on the pages of popular science. His name was Gus Wilson, and his feet were protruding from beneath a car on which he was "examining the brake rods." Sliding out from under the car, Gus Wilson emerged both into the light of day and into an extraordinary career. In the years that followed he has become the best-known and most respected auto mechanic in the world of fiction. All dimensions of the Gus Wilson saga are of heroic proportions, Model garage stories are among the longest continuous fiction features ever printed in any magazine. More than 500 Gus Wilson stories have been published. Some of the best of the latest are included in this collection. All deal with the problems of modern cars. You may be driving one of them. What you learn in reading these entertaining tales may help you solve a future problem.
Who was Martin Bunn? The long-time author of the Gus Wilson stories is a pen name. Over the years, scores of writers have assumed the Bunn moniker. Only the best wore it successfully. Their works are listed here. "
From One of our Readers (gus-stories.org)
December 1, 2003
Martin Bunn did not exist--he was a pen name for a number of different Popular Science writers over the years, who wrote the stories and were paid by the story. The had a set character list to follow, but the story was up to them.
I had a good friend named Phil McCafferty who wrote for Popular Science for years, was an associate editor until his death last year (2002) (Actually, 1 year ago yesterday) He was the lawn and garden editor at the time of his death.
Phil wrote a number of Gus stories. I have a copy of, which I can't seem to lay my hands on, but we had several conversations on this subject and he told me there were several other writers who shared the Gus stories.
Phil was pretty upset when the editors of PS decided to drop the series. I think he enjoyed writing these stories as well as other articles and reviews of "What's New."
Phil was a really interesting person and I miss him a great deal. Writing was a second job for him, his primary job was Vice President of Manufacturing for Link Belt Construction Equipment. Phil worked his way up in the company from sweeper--a real success story, and a real fine man.
Sorry to ramble on, but hopefully this will answer some of your questions about the Gus series.