October 1996 Newsletter


Let’s start out with some Tech Tips! Over twelve years ago when I restored my first 356, I put the hood seal in backwards. It is supposed to be installed with the apex of the V inside and the arms pointing outside. When this was called to my attention, I re-installed the hood seal correctly. Since then I have seen a few other hood seals installed wrong. But no big deal; it’s not going to take 10 mph off your top speed.

Well I was wrong! Correct installation of the hood seal is very important. I just disassemble a ’65 Coupe with an improperly installed hood seal. The underneath of the nose of the hood was rusted out. Picture a V holding water under the hood! You got it, the reason why the seal should not trap water at the nose. This is a very difficult metal repair!

By the way, the cut in the hood seal is on the passenger side, upper corner where the factory weld shows, usually between the lower first and second screw of the corner piece.

In the last two weeks I’ve disassembled three 356’s to get them ready for media blasting. One item that is important to me is removal of the gas tank. I prohibit any gasoline in my basement shop (so does Barb!). On B/C 356’s the technique is to remove the tank hold down bolts and body to tank plates and then disconnect the gas line to the tank and pull the cotter pin on the lever.

Before removing the gas line to the tank make sure the lever is turned off i.e. to the Z or Zu (off) position. When you pull the line off you will have a few drips of gasoline so have a cloth handy. Do not have a trouble light under the work area. Use a flashlight! Well, two of the gas tanks I removed were no problem, but the third, when I pulled the gas line, gas spurted out. What happened was someone installed the gas lever upside down. What was supposed to be reserve was off and off was reserve. Fortunately I was able to crawl out from under and put the lever in the off position. Why did I not recognize the wrong lever position. Well, on A cars it’s one way and B/C cars the opposite. I forgot. The picture of gas pouring onto a hot light bulb sticks in my mind. Be careful!

By the way, gas in the tank is used in my lawn mower/snow blower. Also any money found in a 356 during disassembly is mine! I made over $5 this week with change I found under the floor mats. The most I found in the past was in the heater tube on the passenger side. Can’t you picture a child stuffing change in the heater opening by the floor.


We returned Mikes’s ’64 Coupe but also received three 356’s. Dr. Jack’s Sunroof Coupe came down from Vail and was disassembled and blasted. Web’s 356 C from New York was transported out here and also disassembled. A few days later, the third one, Jack’s C arrived and was also disassembled and sent to the blaster. So you know what I will be doing this winter. Three 356 C’s plus Ron’s ’60 Cabriolet as time permits. Plus Warren’s ’65 Coupe is just about ready for glass installation and the Shop ’64 Cabriolet should be back from the upholstery shop.


I took a Sunday off and helped crew on Norm’s 911 at the Pueblo Enduro Races. These are one and a half hour races with two mandatory 10 minute pit stops. It’s fun to watch the vintage Porsches race for more than 15-20 minutes. One of my jobs was to check tire pressure. We set at 24/26 psi front/rear at the start. Ten laps later the tires were at 30/32 and had to be bled. Ten more laps they were at 26/28 and had to be bled again. There were only two 356’s at Pueblo, Bill’s number 17 and Troy’s new race car. Bill is always fast and did well. Troy’s new race car looked great. He might have been the fastest Porsche but broke a rocker arm.


I loaned someone my Merritt/Miller book. This is the one on all 356 factory publications. I use it for determining correct factory options and installations. I need it back; it is expensive.


I see a definite upswing in 356 interest. Last month I mentioned I knew of some nice 356’s for sale. I received six calls. Since then I have had more calls from buyers and sellers. I hope this holds although it usually gets quiet during the winter. A possible buyer was interested in the Shop ’57 Coupe and I loaned it to him to evaluate. Well, he has had it for three weeks and loves the car but thinks he will buy an open car. Meanwhile he has driven the ’57 enough to seat the pistons, buffed out the paint, fixed the trim and cleaned the car. Guess what? He is going to sell it and we will split the profit over my original asking price.


Well I moved all my parts from the storage area to the shop. Of course this involved building shelves over the garage for the non 356 stuff. It took a while. I also moved Tom’s ’54 Cab to his friend’s garage (Tom is in Hawaii). So a few more 356’s moved from storage and we will be out of there and the major rent increase. Drop by the shop and check out my parts. Everything is here. In the past I wasn’t sure what I had. Of course, whenever I sell something, I will need it the following week!