A lot of progress this month. I finished doing the test installation of all the parts on Rhomes ’61 Roadster. Only a few pieces didn’t fit due to the collision damage in 1963. Rhome was missing the side window glass and hardware. Roland loaned me a piece and I was able to get new glass cut. I didn’t go to the trouble to have SIGIA sandblasted on the glass. I used the bottom from some coupe glass to make the regulator slide and had to fabricate the side channel pieces. Turned out the regulator that came with the replacement driver’s door was for the right side. Of course I learned this after I assembled everything and the window wouldn’t go all the way down.
I found a driver side regulator on the shelf and with some modification got it to work. The next step will be to disassemble everything and get it to the painter. It will be Royal Blue.
Charlie brought his ’64 Coupe up from the Springs for a color change from Black to Auratrium Green. Since minimal bodywork was required BJ and I got it disassembled and to the painter within a week. The 356 had way too much bondo and paint which caused the black paint to crack and craze. We ground out those areas and refilled. The painter will sand down to the original paint before applying primer and color.
Scotty dropped off his ’53 Coupe which we disassembled and took to Blast Tech. The 356 is complete and it is fun to work on the early cars. Of course when I see Phillips head screws on a PreA I know somebody has been there before. Phillips head screws were not used until 1955. We will give Scotty a metal work estimate after the 356 is blasted but right now it looks like we can save the original floor pan. This is great as the reproduction Pre-A pan is not available.
Scotty knows this 356 as he raced against it in 1953 The dash plaques from the SCCA Continental Divide Rally in 1953, ’54 and ’55 are still in the car. There was a fire extinguisher in the 356 and it is the same one I have seen in the early Porsche accessory catalog and it still worked!
When we dropped of Scotty’s 356 at Blast Tech we picked up the shop ’59 Sunroof Coupe. It has the typical rust areas but should go fast as we have done this many many times. Do I get tired doing these repairs? NO, as each repair is a unique test of my skill. I’ve often said I solved more problems working on a 356 than I ever did working in an office. Solving problems makes you feel good.
BJ has his ’64 Coupe almost together and Les Long will bring the rebuilt engine down after the first of the year for installation and test run. Another 356 will hit the road after being stored outside for over ten years.
I’m still looking for shop cars. I enjoyed the calls on the Horsetooth Reservoir Cabriolet We got some laughs on that one. But hey! the RM356PC might end up with this 356 as a project. The club will assist the Sheriff in trying to find the owner. If it is unclaimed the club might get ft. A lot depends on what condition ft was in when ft went under water. The project cars I am interested in are complete cars, maybe disassembled, requiring rust repair. I usually pay between $3000-$5000 for Coupes and $8000-$10,000 for open cars. Again, my number is (303) 840-2356.
Brett Johnson will publish my survey in the next Registry and maybe I can solve this mystery. I thought the scope of the mystery was 1958 to 1960 Coupes. But I have found one Cabriolet and recently Ray Morgan drove his ’62 Coupe over and sure enough it had a letter on the decklid, an S. Ray’s ’62 is all original; his Dad bought it in Germany. Ray refreshed the undercoat and did some minor paint touch ups, other than that it is as delivered from the factory. A beautiful Ivory with green interior. Ray found a set of green seat belts his Dad had purchased in the early 60’s. I gave him some hardware so he can install them. Porsche didn’t provide seatbelts or a way to install them until the early 60’s.
Year in Review
All in all a good year. Lots of progress and a few disappointments. We worked on or completed ten 356’s ranging from complete restorations like the Vail ’64 Coupe, Basalt ’59 Coupe and three Speedsters. We did metal work on the Shop ’52 Race car and Roland’s ’60 Roadster. We also did quick repairs to customer’s hoods, doors and rust areas.
We took trips to the LA Swap Meet, Durango Holiday and San Diego Fall Festival.
Notable events were the Chanty Concours, Nostalgia Racing, social with Brian Redman and Porsches and Pastries. A disappointment was the cancellation of the Silver Creek Race. Vintage Racing was mixed, with three races and limited track time due to brake and engine problems. A disappointment was not racing my ’57 Carrera Coupe.
A major loss was the death of Dave Lindeman, a true 356 enthusiast.
The best deal was the $800 ’52 Coupe race car!
All in all a good year!
As great as the cars are, the best times of 2000 were spent with the owners of these special cars. Happy Holidays to all.