Auto Restoration for Beginners

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Comments

  • sgaines1sgaines1 Posts: 44
    I'd like to congratulate akashino and rea98d for working on these cars. I always feel bad when people are told not to fix something because it's not worth it. Every year, there are fewer of these 'not worth it's'. Of course, people should know that they'll never be rich from restoring porky American sedans or funky little Japanese toys, but I wish more people would let sentiment rule. I know my '78 Grand Marquis didn't want to be made into forks, and I would have saved it if I'd had the money, even knowing that it was a worthless car. I just loved it. You can keep your show quality pony cars, I'll take a big, fat, lovely, $500 barge any day.
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Sonoma, CaliforniaPosts: 64,482
    Okay! Shame on me!
  • akashinoakashino Posts: 36
    Does anybody know of any good places to learn auto restoration??? Part time? Full time?

    I'm specifically interested in the Southern Ontario region of Canada, but I'm sure others would be interested in any input people have of courses in there neck of the woods.
  • andy_jordanandy_jordan Posts: 764
    But I am forced to correct shifty.

    They are indeed in Bradford, but the web site is www.guildautomotive.on.ca and they have some VERY nice cars
  • akashinoakashino Posts: 36
    Thanks to both of you. I'll buzz them today. Just as an FYI, I was doing some work in a town just east of Toronto yesterday called Whitby. I was on my way back and I spotted a classic car shop on Brock St. I believe. Not sure what the deal was but they had a number of restored and restoreable classics on the lot that looked like they were for sale. Unfortunately I was late for a meeting back in Toronto and didn't have time to pop in.

    Next time I go to see the client, I'll pop in and post some info on this place.
  • andy_jordanandy_jordan Posts: 764
    Where on Brock - I am on York/Durham line between Stouffville and Uxbridge.
  • akashinoakashino Posts: 36
    It's on Brock Street or Road (The easterly most of the 2 Brock's) just south of Rossland Rd on the West side.

    Hope this helps.
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Sonoma, CaliforniaPosts: 64,482
    Don't worry about correcting me...you should correct THEM, because I took the damn URL right off their own full page ad! I hope they fix cars better than they type :)
  • ataieataie Posts: 84
    If I don't plan on painting the car right away, should I still go ahead with plans to sand the primer to 220 or more, or should I wait and do the final smooth sanding right before I'm ready to paint. I may not paint the car until next year and the car will be sitting outside.
    thanks,
    Shon
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Sonoma, CaliforniaPosts: 64,482
    I think I'd wait because you're going to have to clean and prep the car thoroughly and no doubt spray indoors so you might as well create one gigantic mess rather than two...
  • speedshiftspeedshift Posts: 1,598
    Somewhere I read that primer is porous, and that moisture can get under it and start rusting the sheetmetal. Any truth to that? If there is, then storing the car outside in primer might not be a good idea.
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Sonoma, CaliforniaPosts: 64,482
    I think that's true...you'd end up having to do the whole thing twice...but primer would be better than bare metal anyway.
  • ataieataie Posts: 84
    so I guess waxing the primer would be out of the question...... just kidding. thanks for the advise.
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Sonoma, CaliforniaPosts: 64,482
    Well, if you were going to strip the paint, you could just glop something on it, yes, but those various preservatives can be hell to get off. Even thick year old wax takes a bit of effort.
  • speedshiftspeedshift Posts: 1,598
    I remember--not fondly--stripping the paint off a GTO. I had an ample supply of Dinzler(?) Aircraft Stripper: just brush it on and off comes the paint. In theory. In practice, I needed a paint scraper and lots of elbow grease. The fumes were okay as long as you didn't breathe.
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Sonoma, CaliforniaPosts: 64,482
    That's why a really good paint job costs $5,000+ these days...it's all very labor intensive. I am always amused to read in ads about "restored" cars with new paints jobs that cost $400....yikes!
  • ataieataie Posts: 84
    for my 64 Benz I bought both types of paint remover (paste, and spray). The spray worked great, not much fume, and paint started to bubble in about 10 minutes. The paste was bad. not as effective and you're right the fume almost knocked me out. The spray is called 'Auto Strip' which I bought at Auto Zone for about $3.

    first time takes the paint off, spray again, and when you wipe, you'll see bare, shinny metal.
  • speedshiftspeedshift Posts: 1,598
    Where were you fifteen years ago?
  • fordy1fordy1 Posts: 30
    I am working on a 51 ford 2 dr and I would like to
    change the front suspension to modern. Is there a
    front end I can use that would be fairly easy??
  • hey guys,

    I have a 1987 corrolla that I would like to restore. Everything is in operating condition, except for the engine. The car was running until a year ago. The engine burnt four quarts of oil in a week. I laid it to rest until now. I would like to put a new engine in there. It has almost 200k on the odometer. Is there any classes I could take where I could learn this? I know it's complicated to do and very expensive. I've been told it's not worth doing this. how much does a new engine cost? Anyway I could get one from toyota? I have lots of questions, I don't know where to start. any advice would be greatly appreciated. Michael
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Sonoma, CaliforniaPosts: 64,482
    Michael--I'd suggest that you think about installing a good used engine; other than that, you could probably get the basics of engine rebuilding at your local Community College. But you will still incur expenses on the rebuild, both for some special tools and for the machine work that you can't do yourself. It's a great learning experience though, and if you have the time and interest to look at it as education and not a money saver, go for it!

    Fordy--I think you should maybe ask the people who build those early Ford pickup rods. They have a couple of standard front end conversions, and it's my recollection that they use Chrysler front ends with a torsion bar setup...sorry but I don't know the details of that.
  • rea98drea98d Posts: 982
    My suggestion is, if you know the basics of slam-bang-cough-wheeze (compression, ignition, exhaust, intake), and know what a connecting rod is, then you would probably learn just as much with an internet connection and a good service manual. (although there might be a few more mistakes along the way ;-)I understand your predicament, as my first car (a 78 Grand Marquis) is sitting in the barn awaiting a transmission repair/replace, (only has 1st gear) some engine work (starts, runs good, doesn't go very fast), and some body work (I'll leav that to the pros, though I might paint her myself if I can find an enclosed place (with vent fans for the fumes, of course!) to protect it as it dries). I know she's not worth it, but it's my first car, and I really like her. ANyway, I'm going to get my hands on all the engine manuals and tools I can, and then start following the instructions. FWIW, I do have experience with small engines, so, although there will be a learning curve (big time!), I'm up to the task. FWIW, having a mechanic repair your car, your glad to have it back, wonder what the heck he did under there, have a horrible pain in your wallet, and have to hope he didn't dribble tobacco juice into the cylinder when the head was off. When you do it yourself, you have the satisfaction of a job well done, know exactly what you did, and spend less money doing it. (40/hr shop time ain't exactly cheap!)
  • I know this is going to rub a few people the wrong way and at the risk of sounding pompous, I really don't think beginners should be rebuilding certain components on cars, at least not without supervision.
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Sonoma, CaliforniaPosts: 64,482
    I thinkt the degree of supervision necessary is dependent on the type of component. If you're building say an American V8 engine, this is pretty straightforward, and a good book and the friendly advice of the machine shop might be enough to get you through. But if it's say a Porsche or BMW engine, you'd be a dead duck trying this on your own.
  • Agree ... I have seen some top-rate work done by young relative novices. My problem is with the hack artists.
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