We have been recommending for years that as part of your annual inspection of your 356 you check your fuel lines. Your fuel line can be either 7mm German braided hose of 5/6″ rubber hose. The rubber hose requires hose clamps and they are also recommended for the braided hose. Now we are recommending you replace any 7mm hose with 5/6″ hose and clamps.
The reason: we inspected the braided hose on Barb’s Twin Grille Roadster and all was fine. We filled the 356 with gas, started the engine and let it warm up. A few minutes later there was a large pool of gas under the car. We shut off the engine and the fuel petcock and moved the car. After the gas on the ground expanded, we jacked up the front and the failure was the braided line from the petcock to the steel tunnel line.
Our previous inspection had indicated the line was OK. It wasn’t. The line appears to have failed from the inside. We believe this is due to the gasoline that is being refined today. There is an excellent article in the recent 356 Registry that talks about this. So our new recommendation is to replace all 7mm German braided fuel lines with 5/16 rubber fuel lines and hose clamps. The rubber fuel line is available at Auto Parts stores. Buy 6 feet so you have extra. In addition to the petcock to tunnel line you also have a line from the back of the tunnel to the steel line behind the fan shroud. You may also have a fuel line on the line between carburetors, from the fuel pump to the carb and to the cars if you run Webbers.
In addition to replacing your fuel lines, get in the habit of turning off (Zu) your fuel petcock when you park your 356 and carry a Halon fire extinguisher. They are available from aviation supply stores as they don’t damage the engine as powder fire extinguisher will.
BJ continues with the tedious job of making Ted’s Cabriolet look like a 356. This involves moving down high spots, bringing up low spots and getting the panels flush. Ted’s Cabriolet ranks number three on our major metal work hit parade, right after Barb’s Twin Grille Roadster and Keith’s Frankenstein Cabriolet.
I’ve started putting the Shop ’64 Irish Green Coupe back together. We have all the parts on except the bumpers and windshield. We have the headliner in and are waiting on the carpet. The Coupe will need a new interior so it will be off to Autoweave. Hopefully, Al will have the engine done when it gets back from Autoweave. Chris’s Cabriolet is almost ready for paint and we will start putting it back together while Ted’s Cab goes for paint. Bill is taking all the parts of the ’58 “Company Car” race car and putting them on the ’52 race car. We hope to get in at least one race this year. We will turn the ’58 into a street outlaw. It will have the rollcage and race interior. We will do a repaint, add nerf bars and other outlaw features.
Barb and I were invited to judge at the Charity Concours on June 8th. We had over twenty 356’s and over 200 other sports cars. There were some new 356’s and other cars being judged for the first time. The quality of the cars to be judged was excellent this year. We would like to thank Joe Ratcliffe for volunteering at the last minute to judge engines when we were short a judge.
We are doing one of the final edits on the restoration book. This process has yielded more detail and clarification. The editor also wants more pictures and illustrations. Fortunately he has an illustrator as I can’t draw. We will probably end up with over 200 pictures. The book will be soft cover and sell for $19.95-$24.95. It will probably be called “Porsche 356 Restoration – A Do-It-Yourself Guide” or something like that. I have over 200 hours into the book so far and we started last November.
The Shop ’61 Roadster was picked up by the Horseless Carriage transport company and is on its way to New York. The transport driver had to rearrange cars and did it on the road in front of our house. BJ and I gave him a hand. He had an enclosed trailer with room for three on a top rack and three on the floor. We had to rearrange a Ferrari, Camaro, and Bronco. He also had a MGB race car but we didn’t have to move it. These were all restorations going to new owners. The Ferrari leaked oil. The low mileage Bronco had a dirty undercarriage. The Camaro made gear noise in reverse and the back up lights didn’t work. Our Shop Roadster was the best looking car and had to go up front as it would be the last off. I saw the invoice for moving the Roadster from Denver to New York. It was $2,000; the buyer pays. The Shop ’56 Speedster will be going to Italy and it will probably cost a lot more but we don’t yet have the details on how it will be transported.
The RMVR Charity race is July 19 & 20 at Second Creek Raceway (88th and Buckley by DIA). Plan to attend!