We had some really nice comments on our first year newsletter and we thank you! So we will keep the newsletter going. In retrospect, the philosophy we started is still holding. If you noticed in the first annual newsletter, many 356 owners have been actively involved in their restorations. This is the way I learned to really appreciate these great cars and I’m glad that others are also learning.
Abby’s 356 is at the painters. Abby opted for Slate Gray rather than the original Silver Metallic. Slate Gray is one of my favorite 356 colors.
John and Lynn’s ’59 Sunroof Coupe is in the “put it back together” stage under the able management of John Jenkins.
Stormin’ Norman’s “C” Coupe project got a new bottom, longitudinals, rockers, battery box, engine tray, and typical outer sheet metal repair. Norm’s project went back to Fort Collins on the same trailer that brought down Ron’s 356 Coupe for more of the typical bottom and outer skin repair.
Jim’s Speedster went into storage as we have plenty of time to get to it as Jim will be in Italy with the Air Force for another year. Our thanks to Werks (Tom Scott’s new shop) for the storage in consideration for future parts and service.
So, if you are counting 356’s, this means that the only active cars in the shop are Ron’s Coupe and Tom’s ’54 Cab. After six month of sitting in the back of the shop. Tom’s car will get some major repair to its outer skin. We have already finished the bottom and now will get to that really bad left front fender. We have looked for six months for a pre-A fender (remember that they were cut for 16″ wheels) and made three offers but could not get a good replacement fender. So we will fabricate, which is fun. Fortunately, Bill Jackson consigned some sheet metal clips to us and one was left front headlight clip which will work on Tom’s Cab.
With most of the 356’s out of the shop for paint and storage this means I can paint the shop floor. The original floor paint looked good for only a few months, but didn’t stand up to acid, oil, paint, and lead. So we will strip it down and go with good two part epoxy floor paint. I like a clean shop and a dirty floor bugs me.
A Problem Solved
When Jim dropped off his Speedster after the West Coast Holiday, we thought we figured out his problems. His doors didn’t fit, the front fender’s bulged, and his top had been lengthened to fit to the windshield. We put a straight edge on his tunnel and saw that the front floor pan really dropped down. We concluded that when the floor pan was repaired, the doors weren’t secured, and the car opened up. To confirm this, we put a Speedster low bow top that I had on consignment on Jim’s car and it was over an inch short of meeting the windshield. So we thought we had the problem solved but something bugged me. I had heard that some repro speedster tops were short. But the owner of this top said he got it from Porsche/Reno. Anyhow, the next time John Jenkins drove his Speedster over, we fit the top on his car and it was also short. We fit John’s top on Jim’s car and it fit! I returned the short top to the owner and he got his money back. It turned out Porsche/Reno had Speedster tops made in Mexico and they were wrong. Obviously, Jim also got a short top as you can See the welds where it was lengthened to fit. So, Jim’s Speedster is not as bad off as we first thought. We will have to straighten the front pan and rework the fenders and doors but this will be a lot easier than bending the Speedster in the middle.
Both Ryan and I attended the PPG Advanced Finishing class and are now certified finish technicians. Just imagine, a little over one year ago I was a professional manager in the computer industry, now I’m a certified technician! This means we know how to finish the exterior of your 356 and are backed by a 36 month guarantee from PPG.
Saturday afternoons from noon ’til four are still open shop. For the last year we have from one to six folks drive by to kick tires and B.S. Drop By! (you may want to call 841-6475 to ensure we will be here).