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Back on the Ghia

DSCF8313 DSCF8315 DSCF8316 DSCF8310 DSCF8311 DSCF8312Back on the ’71 Ghia today. We spent a good portion of the afternoon blocking out some body panels and a little body work. If you remember this car was stripped, epoxy primed and slick sand was also applied. That is the grey product you see here. Its a very high building primer that allows us smooth out the waves and ripples to ensure a super straight end product. These panels were blocked with 80 grit on a long block. This showed us where the high and low spots were. These were repaired and the hood and trunk lid are straight and ready for their final prime. The roof was also blocked out but time ran out before we could finish up the body work. We still have some extensive rust repair to do on this car when the parts come in. We should be getting on those repairs in the next week or so.


Ghia paint day

DSCF8085 DSCF8087 DSCF8088 DSCF8089After getting all the logistics worked out with the insurance company, we got right to work on this Ghia. We fixed the fender up and removed all necessary items to ensure a quality paint job then slid it into the booth for painting. The repair area was sealed with PPG’s urethane sealer followed by several coats of red base coat. Then 2 coats of PPG’s high solid clear was sprayed to protect the color coat and provide the gloss. We are still waiting on some parts to wrap this little car up, but so far the process has gone very smoothly.

Yes, another Ghia in the shop

DSCF8045 DSCF8051 DSCF8050 DSCF8049 DSCF8046 DSCF8052This Awesome little Ghia is in the shop to get its left fender repaired. While the owner was out on a nice drive one day, the left wheel decided to escape. It came off, but luckily it didnt do too much damage. It did bulge the fender out some and rolled the edge over in a few places. We also will have to replace the rotor, backing plate and the wheel, as they were all damaged from the wheel coming off and grinding on the road. While repairing the fender, we also pulled off all the lights, grills and bumper to ensure a great repair and paint job. We did get primer on here before we left for the day and tomorrow we will block that out and re-prime it

Rust no more

DSCF7889 DSCF7890 DSCF7880 DSCF7881 DSCF7882 DSCF7883 DSCF7884 DSCF7885Today we were able to get the slick sand applied to the Ghia. Slick Sand is a very high build primer that allows us to block out the fine waves and ripples in sheet metal. Once that was dry enough to move out of the booth, we put the hood and deck lid in the booth to spray the epoxy on them. We sprayed the bottom side and then the top once it was dry enough to turn over. Monday we will apply the slick sand to these parts.  Now that the body is water tight with no worries about rusting from hand prints and humidity, we will start with the major rust repair in the rockers and floor pans.

Epoxy primer

DSCF7874 DSCF7875 DSCF7873 DSCF7879 DSCF7877 DSCF7876Today was epoxy day for the Ghia. We spent the morning hours prepping the car for primer. We sanded the entire car with 80 grit paper and used a grinder to remove body filler from the lower front center section. Once the metal was ready, we blew the dust off of all the nooks and crannies then wiped it down several times to be sure it was clean. Then we masked off the interior to keep things neat. Now its time for Paul to spray the epoxy. PPG’s epoxy primer is designed to seal up the metal and provide excellent adhesion to the metal and the subsequent products that will go on top of it. Since epoxy takes a while to dry, and it was late in the day, we chose to apply the Slick Sand primer tomorrow morning. Slick Sand primer will provide us with enough material to block out to ensure we have flat straight surface as well as a great base to do body work over. Stay tuned tomorrow to see it in its Slick Sand glory.


DSCF7817 DSCF7818 DSCF7819 DSCF7820These parts go to the Karmann Ghia. We had the outer shell stripped on Monday, today we stripped the under side of the trunk and deck lid. No surprises were found here, thank goodness. Hopefully we already know about the surprises. Now its time to start the road to recovery.

Ratatouille (where’s Mike Rowe)

DSCF7792 DSCF7793 DSCF7791 DSCF7796 DSCF7797 DSCF7801 DSCF7795 DSCF7808 DSCF7809Big day here today. We had Soda Blasting NC come out to the shop to strip the Ghia. We chose to do it wet, to minimize the amount of dust that is created from the blasting. The process took about 6 hours today and worked really well. We found typical body repairs from over the years hidden under the layers of paint. The left fender fender has had its fair share of abuse as well as the left quarter. The rest is normal wear and tear from years of service. While we were washing the soda off we removed a little panel in the interior from under the back seat to find DSCF7805 DSCF7804to come clean it out, but we figured we might as well go ahead and man up. Luckily they have all moved out. We didnt find any left behind bodies, but there were plenty of half eaten nuts, insulation, bits of card board and part of a bag of bread from UDF. We cleaned up the nest, washed it up one final time and wiped it all down with a pre paint cleaner. We plan on getting the body off of this by the end of the week.

Ghia update

DSCF7788 DSCF7789 DSCF7785 DSCF7786 DSCF7787The Ghia went back on the lift Friday to inspect few questionable looking places. We found that someone had used “Great Stuff” to fill in holes, then painted over it to hide it. Great Stuff is foam in a spray can used mostly to fill in small voids. It expands to several times its size and has some insulating properties. It is not designed to fill holes in your car. We cleaned all of it out from around the end of the rockers and these pictures show what we found. Not surprised really, this is pretty normal for these cars. There is more “Great Stuff” up front that will get also get removed. Monday, this car will get all of the old paint removed to reveal whats hiding underneath.

D day

DSCF7753 DSCF7744 DSCF7754 DSCF7760 DSCF7759 DSCF7763I spent most of the day working on the Ghia. I started by removing the spaghetti system aka that big conglomerant of wires in the first two pictures. Then I removed the wiring that goes to the back of the car for the engine and battery. I had to be careful not to damage the turn signal wires or the windshield wiper system because these must be reused. Everything else will be replaced with new and updated parts. Next, the rear side glasses, chrome trim and rubber gaskets were removed. Then out with the gas tank and in all of the interior. This one is pretty well stripped down now and is ready to be blasted. We will have all the paint removed so a first class paint job can be sprayed. This car will really be awesome when we get it done.


DSCF7679 DSCF7680We took a little time this afternoon to check out the work that will be needed on the Karmann Ghia. As with most old cars, when you start really inspecting areas you find things that were previously repaired or hidden over the years. I dont think this Karmann Ghia is in bad shape, but we did find some extensive rust in the inner rockers and sub-par repair on the left fender. We plan on going over this one more tomorrow to see if we can find all the little surprises that may be in store for us.

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