The body work on the ’55 is coming right along. We have been blocking the car out to find what needs to be straightened and what we can straighten with blocking and priming. This car has had some nice work done in the past but we will be fine tuning what they started. As you can see it does have several places that need attention and about that many more that we haven’t gotten to yet. Next week we should be able to start spraying some primer on these repairs. Once that happens another good blocking to make sure we didn’t miss anything then start prepping for paint.
A few parts trickled in today so we were back on the bug. We finished installing the sound deadner on the luggage compartment and on the roof first thing. You would be amazed at how much that stuff will quiet down a car. We then finished rebuilding the vent windows. Well the right one anyway. Once it was complete and the glue was dry on the felt channel it went into the door. Next was the other felt channel that goes at the back of the door and finally the door glass. This all went very smoothly. We were also able to install the license plate housing and the speedometer. Guess you will have to see that next post. I forgot to snap a picture of it. We also completed a bit more of the wiring and ran the brake lines from the reservoir to the master cylinder. Not super exciting stuff, but progress none the less.
Still working on the ’57 to wrap up the week. Today we were able to get the doors and deck lid sanded down for buffing. Jordan started on the deck lid then moved to the doors. Paul couldn’t resist the fun and quickly helped Jordan out. Once they had the truck ready, Paul started the buffing process while Jordan sanded the doors. Just like the sanding process, the buffing process consists of 3 steps. First step is a cutting compound. This process removes the sanding scratches but leaves its on scratches from the process. The next step is a polishing compound that removes the scratches left by the first, but it too leaves really fine swirl marks. The final step removes the really fine swirls and leaves the paint super smooth and scratch free. Its a long process but very worth it when only the best will do. We didnt quite get done with the buffing, but the last picture shows what the paint looks like after one round of step 2. Yes, sometimes you have to go over it a few times to get it right but its worth it in the end.
Yesterday started off with a little sand blasting. Jordan blasted the hood hinges and the door hinges for the ’57 Chevy. Once they were done, Cole took his turn sanding them back down smooth. Once that was finished up, Paul cleaned them up and sprayed a coat of DP epoxy on them and followed that with the appropriate colors for the parts. The hood hinges were painted a soft silver color with a flat clear coat and the door hinges were painted the factory Tropical Turquoise then cleared with a high gloss clear. Today we started the wet sanding process. This part of the paint job separates the men from the boys. This is where the super smooth, mirror like finish comes from. Jordan started with 1000 grit sand paper and carefully sanded the clear coat to remove what little orange peel was there. He then went back over that with 2000 grit paper and followed that will 3000. This process will provide a super high gloss and an ultra flat surface. You will easily be able to shave using this paint as a mirror.
We have been working hard on the C-10, and it shows. We now have 4 more parts ready for paint. Cole and Jordan finished blocking these panels out today and Paul had just enough time to spray a few coats of urethane primer on them before quitting time. These panels will be blocked one final time to be certain they are nice and straight before painting.
Still plugging along on the VW. The wiring is coming along nicely. All of the major wires are run and most things are hooked up. We are waiting on some parts that is keeping us from finishing that up so we are installing what we can to keep things moving. Once we get the speedometer and the steering column installed that mess of wires will be cleaned up a little. We secured the wiring back at the firewall and started installing the insulation back there. VW made little flexible hooks for the wiring to run through when these were new but the aftermarket parts don’t put them on the ones made today. This firewall was replaced at some point a while back so we had to add the clips to hold the wiring. We are making good progress each day. This little VW will be back on the road before you know it.
Painting continues for the ’57. Today Paul sprayed the batch of interior parts he worked on yesterday. These parts are interior trim parts that were pretty much stripped and repainted. We started out by applying a coat of PPG’s DPLV epoxy primer. Once that was dry we were able to go straight to the Tropical Turquoise color. Once that was dry Paul sprayed 2 coats of PPG’s DC 3000 clear. These parts should look nice for years and years to come.
Another busy day working on the Bug. Today we started building the left door. We now have both doors hung and operational. The window tracks are all in as well as the outer window scrapers and the clips that hold the felt channel. We have both vent windows built as far as we can go. We are waiting on one seal that goes in the vent window but it wont arrive for a couple of weeks. Once we hit that road block we started putting the decklid and hood back together. We decided it would be easier to wire the car and install the gas tank with the hood off so we didnt install that just yet. We then dug out the old fuse block, cleaned it up and installed it as well as started running some wires. Tomorrow the installation of the spaghetti system marches on.
While Jordan and I worked on the VW, Paul was busy sanding and prepping about a dozen or so interior trim parts for the ’57. Most of these parts were stripped because the factory only applied a couple of coats of paint and did so directly over the bare metal. This isnt going to cut it for todays quality. When trying to sand these parts the paint just flakes right off so stripping them wasnt really hard, just a bit time consuming because of the number of parts. Looks like he has them pretty close. We hope tomorrow evening they will look as good as the car does.