May 1999 Newsletter


It has been a month of car shows and metal repair. My son, BJ, has joined me in the shop. He and his wife, Jennifer, moved here from Minnesota with BJ now doing all the grunt work i.e. grinding, sanding and cleaning parts; we are making good progress.

We finished the metal repair on the Shop ’58 Cabriolet and sold it to Miles C who plans to restore it as a joint project wth his Dad.

We started on the extensive metal work on the Shop ’56 Speedster. We pulled the transmission to bet beytter access to the metal. BJ discovered a piece of metal when he drained the tranny oil and then some epoxy sealant on some of the case cracks. So the tranny is suspect but sitting in the garage is another 519 tranny that came as part of the Carrera deal and it should fit right into the Speedster.

We put the Shop ’64 Cabriolet in the shop and BJ started disassembly. I told him how a 356 will “talk” to you and we think this is a low mileage car. Wear on the hood hinges and door mechanisms are minimal. The Cab is complete and many parts reuseable. But even before blasting I can see fiberglass repair on the inner longitudinals and a flat brazed in the floor pan. The front struts were fiberglassed; so it will be a typical restoration.


We cleaned up the ’57 Carrera Coupe and trailered it to the Charity Concours in Arvada. This was a new site and the turnout of cars and spectators was excellent. The event raised over $30,000 for United Ceribral Palsy.

There were ten 356’s on displany and four were judged and all won awards. Mark Kutner took first place with his beautiful ’59 Sunroof Coupe. He did it his way to his gigh standards and it is a great 356. Since 356RESTORE did the metal work and installed the sunroof on Mark’s ’59, we shared his accomplishment and offer sincere congratulations on a job well done. (Editor’s note: Jim was presented the Entrants and Judges Award for Favorite Porsche for his ’57 Carrera.)

We also showed the ’57 Carrera at the local Parker Country Festival. There were about eighty cars mostly American classics and only one Porsche-so guess what-the Carrera recieved an award in the Special Interest Class. Seems as though our Garage Queen has real spectator appeal.

The major drama was getting the ’57 Carrera on the trailer and back to the garage before a huge hailstorm hit. We made it with only seconds to spare thanks to some help from other car enthusiaist.

More Help

Les Long in Ogen, Utah is nearing his retirment from the Air Force and is expanding his 356 engine guilding efforts. He calls his shop Air Power Racing (nice play on words). He recently drove down and delivered the engine we will use in the Shop ’57 Speedster. He picked up all the engine parts for the New Jersey ’56 Speedster and will rebuild two engines for the Doctor who is pleased his 356 is finally getting restored. That Speedster body is at the paint shop getting repairs to the earlier incomplete paint job

More Work

A guy called and wanted me to look at his ’61 Cabriolet. I said I would look at it but make no promises to do the work. He trailered it over and was it a mess. No floor pan and every panel dented; not from collision but like someone/something just pounded on it. No top, engine, interior nor parts were there. I told him there was at least $5,000 in metal work and lots more time and dollars for missing parts, paint and interior. I said I hoped he didn’t pay more than a few thousand for the roller. He said he paid $150 for it at a salvage lot. So he beats my $800 ’52 Coupe bargain. His Cab turned out to be a ’59, one of the first T-5 Cabs. The gas tank which was the only part still with the car was dated 6/59.

Speaking of my $800 ’52 Coupe, I finally got some tires on it and off the trailer. Surprise, the axel was modified and a 741 transmission had been installed. The pan and longitudinal are in great shape shape. somebady was goint to make this a race car and that is what I will do since it is missing the engine and everything else.

Ongoing Work

I plan to pick up Cal’s ’55 Speedster at Autoweave next week. I have to do some brake, suspension and electrial work on it. Cal is still working on his engines. The New Jersey Speedster should come back.