January 1995 Newsletter

Happy New Year!

Barb and I celebrated New Year’s Eve with a sunset dinner cruise off of Maui, Hawaii. Quite different than last year at Breckenridge. We really enjoyed our week in Hawaii and would return in a minute.

I saw a Speedster on Maui and two B Coupes in Oahu. Plus we spent some time with Tom and Missy in Kanai. We did the metal work on Tom’s ’54 Cabriolet last year and hope to finish the project for Tom in the future.


In October, I indicated I would defer the 356RESTORE annual report to this month. As you may recall, the goal this year was to break even. Well, we didn’t make it. Expenses were $72,634 and revenue $27,444. However, I didn’t sell two shop cars which should have provided $26,000 in revenue plus I bought three other 356’s for a total of $9,000. So considering inventory expense the loss was about the same as our first year even though we raised the shop rate from $22.50 per hour to $25.00. We don’t intend to raise our rates this year so I am going to have to control expenses.


Joe got his ’58 Speedster back on Christmas Eve day and is now into the fun part assembly. 356RESTORE did a real good job on Joe’s Speedster; better than we expected considering the rough exterior. Ryan learned that A bumpers are a lot harder to finish than B/C bumpers. On the later bumpers you have three flat surfaces; on the early bumpers just one curved surface. If your A bumpers are real rough, you may want to consider repro bumpers which have dropped in price from around $500 each when they first came out to $200 or less today

Alan’s ’60 Roadster is ready for its Slate Gray paint. Alan saw Abby’s 356 last year and really liked the color. I detailed Alan’s engine and he should get a performance increase as I discovered he did not have any gaskets under his intake manifolds. I take intake manifolds and generator stands to Blast-Tech for soda blasting. The aluminum comes back like new and for $5 each it sure beats hours of hard work.

Rhome’s ’61 Roadster was pulled back into shape at Karosserie Fabrik. Tom Conway contributed his experience in 356 frame straightening and as a result there will be little metal work for 356RESTORE. Rhome found a driver side door for his Roadster so this 356 should be completed in short order.

Tom’s ’52 Coupe has almost all the bottom metal work done but before we weld in the new longitudinals, Tom wants to cover the heater tubes with a special sheathing. His concern is condensation in the longitudinal cavity. The heater tubes are easier to cover on the Pre-A cars as they don’t have the heater muffler that Porsche later installed in the longitudinal cavity to reduce engine noise.

John’s ’58 Speedster is progressing slowly. The problem is continuing trade-off’s between repairing previous work or replacing whole panels/clips.

Tony ’65 Coupe is awaiting metal work to the crumbled left rear fender and rust bubbles around the right headlight. The challenge after metal work will be to match the unique silver paint so we won’t have to repair the door cavities or under the deck lids.

1994 In Review

When we started 356RESTORE October 1992 we expected to do 2-3 356’s a year. In 1994 we completed:
– metal work on Tom’s ’54 Cabriolet
– complete restoration of Abby’s ’62 Coupe
– metal and paint on Ron and Marcia’s ’64 Coupe
– metal and paint on Joe’s ’57 Speedster
– complete resoration of the shop ’63 Coupe
– minor metal work, paint and restoration of the Shop ’65
– rust repair on Warren’s ’65 Coupe.