April 1994 Newsletter


I have had a lot of positive comments on this newsletter. Thank you! The newsletter is an advertising expense for 356RESTORE and I take it on my taxes so those of you who offered to pay for a subscription, thanks but it is not necessary. I will keep the newsletter going as long as there is interest is what we learn by working on these great cars every day.


Ed and his father dropped by the shop to pick up some sheet metal for their ’65 Coupe restoration. Ed’s father had some interesting stories about how they welded in WWII. He and Ed were gas welding the 356 and it sounded like it was going OK except for some warpage. This why we only use MIG and recently switched to an ARGON/CO2 mix. The new mix is better than straight CO2 and I believe it is very close to gas welding and a lot faster (i.e. no warpage).

Ron and Marcia’s ’64 Coupe is just about ready for paint. The new paint booth is working out great although it is not heated and we have to work around the weather.

Abby’s ’63 Coupe is just about done. We installed the carpet and windshields and took the 356 to Ron Appleton’s in Boulder for adjustments and tune up. Ron found a problem with the axle tube due to a previous repair and made it right. I have Ron double check all of 356RESTORE’s mechanical work. The result of our work is meant to be driven and Ron ensures the drive will be safe.

The shop ’63 Coupe received most of the attention this month. We had a visitor from Illinois who gave us a great tip. He concours and races his 356. His only problem was a slight swelling at the factory overlap welds at the front and rear of the rocker panel. So upon his advice, we no longer use the factory overlap, now we butt weld the rocker to the fender.

We are also going to do an additional check on door fit. We talked to a guy who was restoring his 356 Coupe and had it painted and then found that his side window frame didn’t fit the opening. We haven’t had this problem on the dozen of Coupes we’ve done but will now fit the window frame before paint. In fact, we have learned you have to fit everything i.e. doors, lids, bumpers, headlights, taillights, and windows before paint.

We should be starting on Joe’s Speedster next week. Joe’s top wouldn’t fit to the windshield so we tried on from another customer Speedster. It fit! So, we removed the material from Joe’s top and it also fit. What we thought might be a major problem looks minor i.e. only an 1/8″  adjustment to the right side pivot. Joe said the top had been out in the weather and may have shrunk and he already had a replacement.

We have scheduled the next 356 into the shop. It will be a pre-A Coupe that needs a bottom everything. Since this will be our second pre-A and nothing can be worse than the first, it should be a snap.

Tech Tip

When installing a windshield (you can do it – it’s easy!) you fit the new rubber to the glass, install the deco trim, place the completed windshield in the opening with a cord in the seal slot and pull the cord to set the seal inside the car. The tip is to use duct tape at the outside corners to hold up the outside of the rubber seal so the windshield fits exactly in the opening.

Finish a 356 – April 24th

George White, a RM356PC member has been working the last few years to finish a real nice ’65 Coupe. His goal was to have it done by the ’94 West Fest – May 7 & 8. A few weeks ago, George experienced a ruptured disk and will be out of action for 2-3 months.

If you would like to help finish the 356, we will do it Sunday April 24th. George will provide brats and beer and food all day. We need to install the engine (which runs), linkage, brakes, door assemblies, and as much interior as possible. Call Jim Kellogg (841-6475) if you can help. No experience necessary!

George’s 356 is at 14335 Foothill Rd in Golden (Take I-70 to 32nd, West on 32nd to Eldridge, South on Eldridge to Foothill Road (on the right) to the sixth house. Call Jim so we can assemble teams and plan food. Let’s start at 0800.