Restoring a classic car can make your dream of owning a piece of automotive history come to life. Bringing a classic model that needs a little TLC back to life is not an easy task but could ultimately be one of your biggest accomplishments. It’s a great hobby and gives you something that could become your daily driver or a fantastic addition to your collection.
Here are five parts that need to be on the top of your list of things to look at when restoring a classic car.
This may be the most obvious part of any car that needs to be replaced. Tires rot over the years, and as a result, this should be among the first things to be replaced. When it comes to new tires, also consider the vehicle you are restoring, and the type of tires it originally had. For example, an elegant sedan from the 1930s should be restored with wide, white-wall tires.
Spend a little time doing your research to get the look that you want for your car. Don’t forget to look into rims to go with your tires too.
Any car that’s been sitting for many years will need engine work. Check for any signs of antifreeze in the oil pan or oil in the radiator. Also, look for signs of leaks around the gaskets and plugs. These signs indicate that the engine block is cracked and it’s very likely you’ll need to replace the engine.
Replacing the engine could be very difficult with a very old or rare car. However, newer and more popular classics are relatively easy.
If you are a beginner, it might be a smart idea to start with a vehicle that has parts that are easier to find. It will cost less and mean that you aren’t stuck waiting for a specific part to show up online before you can continue with your rebuild.
Once the engine will start, shift it into gear and try to move the vehicle forwards and backward. If it doesn’t go anywhere, you need a new transmission, and possibly, a clutch. If it does move, listen for clunking noises or whining. Pay attention to the movements, sounds, and even smell of the transmission.
If you are unsure with any state of the engine rebuild, watch a YouTube video or consult a mechanic with experience working on the same make and model.
While you’re fixing the engine and transmission, visualize the perfection your car represents. Pounding out the dents, restoring the chrome and repainting your classic are critical for adding to its value.
This is where you get to express your artistic sensibilities and personal tastes, and create a true work of mechanical art.
Upholstery and Interior
Like the exterior, the interior is an opportunity to create a work of art. You can either go with an original look, or go custom. One tip, if you want to go with A custom interior, leave everything in place so the upholsterer can see how it was all originally put together.
Restoring a classic car is not a simple or fast process. But it will certainly be among your biggest and best accomplishments. Regardless if you are restoring the car to be your next daily driver, to sell it, or to enter it into car shows, it will be well worth your time to do it right the first time.
By Anita Ginsburg
who is a freelance writer and residing in Denver, CO. She studied at Colorado State University, and now writes articles about health, business, family and finance. A mother of two, she enjoys traveling with her family whenever she isn’t writing. If you’re looking for type 2 VW bus parts or other classic car parts, she recommends starting your search online.