August 2002 Newsletter


Porsches and Pastries will be Sept 15th from 10-4 at 356RESTORE. This will also be a celebration of the tenth anniversary of 356RESTORE.

There will be great food, beverage and of course Jen’s pastries; also a tech session on 356 Rust and Prevention, plus a drawing for a great door prize and a gift for all. Please plan to attend, you need not RSVP. Lets see how many 356’s show up. Last year we had forty three.

Westfest is soon!-August 25th at 9:00 AM at Ed Carroll Porsche in Fort Collins. There may still be time to join us for dinner the night before at the Big Horn Brewing Company. Call Rich Hagen at 970-353-4867 to see if there is room.

Sunday we start at 9 AM with a brunch, swap meet and Peoples Choice voting. At 10:30 a Tech Session by Joe Leoni on 356 electrics. Awards from 11:30 to 12:30.

By the way I’m in charge of the Swap Meet and am having problems finding vendors. Even if you have only a few spare 356 parts please bring them. The idea is to have parts on 356’s on the road not on the shelf! We can help with fair pricing. Just ask.


In the last newsletter you may have felt my frustration. We attempted too many projects this year. While we made progress on each one we haven’t come to closure on any. The satisfaction is in a good job done. Hopefully this will happen soon.

The ’61 Shop Roadster is back at the painters for a third re-paint. The Shop ’56 Sunroof Coupe went to Joe Leoni for electrical work (thanks Joe! you know how frustrated I can get with 356 electrics). The last customer commitment of this year is a ’58 Cabriolet which is at Blast Tech. This will be a sweet 356. Major problem is the front end damage due to a tow bar accident (more later).

BJ has just about finished Chris’ ’59 Convertible D and next is metal prep, paint, seam sealer, caulk and undercoat on the bottom and then we wait for the painter.

I’ve started on the Shop’57 1500 GS Carrera. The first issue was the passenger door that was replaced by a later door. Fortunately we had a high striker door in our inventory. But boy was it tough to fit the correct door. It took a full day just to get good seams and we still have to replace the lockpost. Since the 356 had louvers on the rear deck lid they had to be cut out to restore it back to original. (GT Carreras had louvers, GS Carreras did not). This was the first time I had a warpage problem. I used my normal procedure: cut out the louver area with the plasma cutter, made my repair pieces and tacked them in. Then short one inch welds alternating areas and allow the metal to cool. When I was done I had warpage. BJ and I talked it over and we also talked to a PhD. with some experience in material stress. It seems the cutting and pressing at the louvers into the deck really changes the metal. The warpage was inevitable. It took a full day to shrink and repair the deck lid. All is well and we have repaired the original numbered deck lid on the Carrera. Next up will be to replace the floor pan in the ’57 1500 GS Carrera. When I bought it for $750 (sans Carrera engine) twenty years ago I knew the floor pan wasn’t original. Now I get to make it right.

Tow Bar

We have used a tow bar to move a 356 from Minnesota to Denver and from Denver to California. It is a cheap way to tow a 356. The tow bar attaches to the front bumper brackets. However, you cannot back up a 356 on a tow bar!! The damage to the ’58 Cabriolet we will be working on was due to backing up with a tow bar. If you ever need to tow a 356, give us a call and we will loan you our (actually Bill Frey’s) tow bar. Just don’t back up!


Well, I didn’t have to appear for the lawsuit. The crook never showed up nor did he participate in discovery. So the Judge made a judgment against him for about eighty thousand dollars. The crook’s name is Doug Michalowsky of Aspen. He over charged and did not finish the work contracted for on the New Jersey ’58 Speedster. He also stole and double charged for parts. If any of you out there know how to locate Doug Michalowsky let me know. He has some assets that may cover the judgment..

Vintage Racing

As you know, with the restoration work we have not been able to participate in vintage racing this year. However, I watched the races at Second Creek last week and was surprised to see Jack Knopinski running his 356. Jack really fractured his shoulder in a hang gliding accident three months ago but racing his 356 he considers therapy. Way to go Jack!

What racing a 356 teaches us is maintenance. We are talking about 40-50 year old cars going at high speed. With the 356 “go” and “stop” is paramount. Go depends on constant maintenance, primarily change the oil and maintain the engine-distributor and carbs. Stop is brakes and suspension. All of this applies to your street 356. These are not today cars. You have to read and follow the maintenance schedule in your owners manual. While a 356 is well engineered it needs TLC.