A Native Californian Bryan was raised in Culver City, California by his parents, Grant and Bonnie Thatcher. To the north was the large Hollywood Movie Studios, to the south was Howard Hughes Aircraft Facility. Everyday he would here the roar of aircraft, trains and cars and this stimulated his interest in these areas. He played with modifying bicycles, wagons and even when old enough he modified his dads lawn mower so he could ride it around the yard. One day, Bryan was on his bicycle riding down a neighboring street when he saw a group of teenagers working on a 1951 Ford. He stopped and asked if he could look at their hot rod and was told ; " GET OUT OF HEAR FOUR EYES - YOU DON'T BELONG HERE" That day in history has always remained very important to him as you will see as you read on.
Bryan's Parents supported his desire to be in Little League Baseball, Cup Scouts, Boy Scouts, Violin Lessons and many other activities but they never showed much interest in his talents for building things. When he was in 6th grade they moved to Temple City, California. Shortly thereafter Bryan acquired a 1915 Model T and a 1927 Model A Panel truck. These vehicles were short lived because his parents didn't want him to have anything to do with cars. But pressing forward he acquired a 1951 Willy's Station Wagon with a Olsmobile V8 Engine. The motor and trans were so heavy, the front leaf springs were completely bent the wrong direction. As he enetered into Temple City High School he played sports, high school orchestra and of course AUTO SHOP & MACHINE SHOP. He still had time to acquire more cars, 1937 Chevy 2-dr Coupe, 1937 Dodge 2-dr Coupe, 1949 & 1951 Oldsmobile 2-dr Coupe a 1955 Chevy Bel Air 2-dr (V8- Stick Shift) and a 1957 Oldsmobile "98" Convertible. These cars all seem to be really cool but he really liked the 55 Chevy which he turned into a very fast hot rod. Bryan graduated and his ambitions turned to the Aeromechanical Engineering Program offered by Pasadena City College. Shortly after being accepted into the program and while attending his classes for a few months, he received a letter from our goverment that he had been drafted into the military.
While Serving Overseas in the US Army - 24th Infrantry Division, Bryan modified the motor on a armored personnel carrier called "Bewitched" into a super fast track vehicle. After finishing his tour of duty he returned to the Aeromechanical Engineering program at PCC after which he transferred to Cal Poly University. Cars were always on his mind. Now his ideas for the 55 Chevy took a different approach. He changed the chassis to a straight axle, modified the wheel base and flipped the body and stuck a big block Chevy Motor with a Blower under the hood. Shortly after this project he acquired a 1969 Chevy Nova SS 396ci 375 hp. that he transformed into a B/MP race car. He became friends with Daryle Buehl & Jim Bishop of Bishop & Buehl Engineering and started crewing on the Famous "Herrera & Sons" Opel GT driven by Roder Garten and Manuel Herrera. Bryan saw the birth of the 417 Dovonan as it was installed into the first Top Fuel Dragster ( KJW). Bryan continued his education and was employed by Fleetwood Enterprises (By the way when he was at Fleetwood Enterprises he developed a automatic passageway door machine. He acquired a 1965 Jaguar (whole other story),and also worked for Cherry Textron and McDonnel Douglas (MDC). At MDC while working on the C-17 program he developed the "Worlds Largest Robotic Gantry System" and was awarded a international patent. Even after this amazing accomplishment he still wanted to build his own car.
This is when the idea for the "Metronator" was Born. The stock metropolitan took on a new life as the 1500hp Metronator and was debuted at the SEMA Show in Las Vegas, shortly after was featured on the History Channel and you can see what the Metronator has accomplished since then.
The "Metronator" was Born
Owner / Builder / Driver
"BRYAN" was always interested in cars since he was an infant