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Re: [T3] Where to start a resto?

On 12 Dec 2002 at 21:58, Andrew van der Stock wrote:

> I?¥úm about to get going on my first resto, so please be gentle. :)

You've made quite an exhaustive list, so I have a couple of generic comments.

BEFORE you take anything apart, I'd drive the car for a few months and keep
notes of what you find that needs work. Otherwise you will spend time fixing
things that are just fine and ignoring things that need help. This can break
the back of any restoration because you tend to exhaust your money and time
before you have a working end product.

I would advise you to fix as much of the small items as you can BEFORE you
start to strip down the car, but if you have to strip something down to get to
it, then you can just set the trim parts aside for later. This will get you
familiar with lots of things before you start. When the time comes to
reassemble parts you will be grateful for any memories you may have about how
this was when it came together.

Did you mention brakes? These cars have excellent brakes when they are properly
working, but they seldom are when you pick up a "new" type 3. That's where I
usually start, if only to protect my "investment."

You have listed engine as one final small item. It's a lot more than that. Care
spent at this point will pay great dividends. Few things look sillier than a
great looking car pulled off the side of the road with engine trouble.

Example: About 15 years ago I suddenly started seeing a little Honda that
someone had obviously put a lot of "rice time" into. Purple metal-flake paint,
huge wide wheels, LOUD sound system, fluorescent wiper blades and shock
absorbers.... The funniest thing was that I saw it driving around exactly once;
the other 5 times it was abandoned on the side of the road in various places.
This guy missed the point.

Finally, I wouldn't take the body off the pan unless it needed serious rust
repair. If it does, then perhaps you should consider looking for a better body
to start with.

Perhaps the biggest danger is in starting down a road that is so long that
you'll never get to the end. That's why I prefer to break the project down into
more finite sized chunks. If you can drive it a bit between "chunks" this will
do wonders for your enthusiasm.

Jim Adney
Madison, WI 53711-3054

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