I know that I have done something like this in the past, bit I will try to expand on the earlier article. Keep in mind that this will by know means cover the entire gamut on this topic. First and foremost is that you want to learn as much as possible before you begin the project. Each time we do a repair on your car we make sure we are using a breakthrough paint protection for the portion that has been damage.
Now that I have covered the easy stuff, let’s dive in head first. Obviously when I say learn as much as you can about the car before you start the project; I mean read the magazines and publications related to the steps of the restoration of a car.
Let me outline a few of my choices as far a reading material on this subject. My favorite publication bar none is Hemmings motor news, this publication holds a wealth of information on this subject. Hemmings also covers locating parts, and quite a few other things that you may need.
Next I would say that you should subscribe to publications like Rod & Custom magazine, this magazine will also help you greatly as you learn about the car your restoring. I know it all sounds like a lot of reading, but the more you know, the better it will turn out in the end.
Also I would recommend Car Craft magazine, and Hot Rod magazine, these are great magazines. They will often expose a complete build on a car, I have read quite a few of those issues. They give a lot of good tips and information that you can use.
Finally the last stage of the reading, got to a Barnes & Nobel book store, and get any books that you can find that are related to the specific car that you want to restore. This includes the By The Numbers books, and anything you can find that focuses on your particular car.
That finishes the reading part of the process; now we will assume that you already have the car that you want to restore. We can proceed to the inspection of the car, this begins with the front of the car and works to the rear of the car, or you can work from the rear forward if you prefer.
During the inspection we will be looking for things that need to be replaced or repaired. What you will do here is get a notebook, or a laptop computer. Divide a page in to three sections; at the top your going to label the sections good, repair, and replace.
In these sections you will be putting the parts that belong in each section in the appropriate section. I would also suggest taking pictures of all of these parts before you remove them from the car. This will build your first parts list, you can begin buying the parts for your car.
This will more then likely be a huge list because you will be covering every part of the car, from the grille, to the tail lights. You don’t want to miss anything, it will slow you down in the end. After you have finished this; you can move on to the tear down stage of the process.
During the tear down stage of the process, you will find more parts that need to be replaced, or repaired so keep your list handy. Remember you can never take to many pictures. The pictures will help you re-assemble the car when it goes back together.
At the first of the tear down process I will tell you one thing, you will need a lot of boxes; you can’t have too many of them. As you tear the car down you will label boxes for the front end something like this steering, suspension, grille, bumper, and the like.
The better that you do this part the easier the car will go back together, oh and by the way, you will need a lot of plastic bags of all sizes. You will also need a boat load of labels for those bags, In the bags you will store nuts, bolts, screws, and other small things that you would otherwise lose.
Don’t think for one minute that you will remember where every nut, bolt, and screw came from. I don’t care if you have a memory like an elephant, after the car sits a while, you will forget. I say this from experience, it has happened to me in the past.
Now we move from tare down to the media blast stage. This is the stage where we get the car to a media blasting company. Depending on how much money you have to spend, will decide on the media that you want to use to blast your car.
I prefer soda blasting, as it won’t damage the sheet metal on the car, and a sand blaster who is just learning the ropes can ruin your classic car for you. This is why I would plan to spend the extra money to soda blast, or acid the car.
Both process are messy for you to clean after you get them back, you will be blowing sand, or soda out of all of the tiny little cracks for quite a while. With the acid dipping you will find that in the cracks on the car also, you need to get all of it out.
If you don’t and you leave sand, or soda in the car; it will come out in your primer, and in your paint. You know that means ugly paint; and for the acid, if you leave any of it your primer will peel in the areas that you didn’t clean it out, all it take is water to clean the acid out.
The next stage is the major body work, such as rust, frame damage, and big dents. This is the time when the real work starts. You will be cutting, pulling, welding, and grinding so get ready to get down an dirty here.
This stage will usually take quite some time, so be ready to spend the hours getting this right. After you have finished the cutting, pulling, welding, and grinding; you can move on the the finish body work. This is the stage where the car starts to really look good.
When you first start on this stage of the body work your car should have the rough body work completed already. This means that the body work areas of the car should all be mudded, and finished to 40 grit sand paper.
In the finish body work stage you will complete the body work. What this means is that you will be adding more body filler where you need it, and the finishing that body work to 80 grit sand paper on the longest hand file board that you can find.
You need to check the body work areas for smoothness every once in a while. You can do this by putting a cloth on your hand, and running it over your body work area. The reason I say use a cloth is simply that you can feel the work better that way.
The next step is to apply some metal glaze to your body work areas, this is a thinner type of filler designed for very small dents and waves. After you have applied the glaze, you cane finish it to 180 grit sand paper.
After you have finished the entire car to 180 grit sand paper on a hand board. Your ready for the first stage of primer. If you have a lot of bare spots, I’d suggest that you start with an etching primer before you move to urethane primer.
I would always give primer of any kind at least 24 hours to dry. After the primer has dried you can hit it lightly with some 600 grit wet sand paper, then spray the entire car with three coats of high build urethane primer, waiting 15 minutes between coats for flash time.
This is all for this article, I will cover the sanding of the primer in another article. I hope this has helped some of you.
Steps In A Car Restoration [http://autorevival.com/?p=3066]
I’ve been in the automotive business for about 20 or 25 years, I have worked in all facets of the industry, from parts to restoration, all different makes and models, I just want to keep people interested in the old cars because it’s where my heart is.
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