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What a relief

DSCF0028DSCF0029DSCF0027Not that I was really expecting problems, its just a little nerve racking when you first hook the battery up to a car you just rewired. Luckily everything went very well. The ONLY problem we had was I wired up the headlight relay with two wires crossed. The stamps on those relays telling you what is what are mighty small and I mistook 56b for just 56. We tested every operation and they all work. Its a big relief. We also installed the door windows, the outer window scrapers and  the moldings. We also cleaned up the quarter glass moldings and chrome trim. We were on tap to install the quarter windows but Murphy and his laws showed up. One would think that if you purchased a “body rubber KIT” it would include everything you needed. Well, it doesn’t. So, we have a few more tid bits of rubber parts on order. Yesterday we bleed the braking system and checked for leaks this morning. All is well with that too. Tomorrow we will install the gas tank and if all goes well, maybe a short video of the first start up.

The heart is in

DSCF0022DSCF0023The engine is is! We received the parts we were waiting for yesterday to allow us to install the engine. There are two very important seals that go around the engine bay that help keep the engine cool. They must be installed before the engine goes in. We installed them, then checked over the clutch, pressure plate and throw out bearing before the install. Once the it was in, we made all of the necessary connections for the coil, generator and fuel lines. We installed the battery and the negative cable but didnt hook up power just yet. It was late in the day and I wanted to have plenty of time to make sure I have triple checked all of the connections. This is not where you want to rush things thats for sure.

Its dashing

DSCF0013DSCF0014DSCF0015DSCF0003DSCF0004DSCF0007DSCF0009Today we installed the upper dash pad that we rejuvenated this week and the new lower one. The freshly painted defrost vents look really nice against the dash pad.  We also had to black out the area around the vents to give a more finished and cleaner look. The hands free microphone looks right at home beside the gas gauge. We also buttoned up a couple things with the wiring and installed the new throw out bearing. We have a quite a few parts on order that should get us really close to finishing this project up. We can’t install the engine until these parts come in, but I did get notification that they have been shipped and are on the way. Im looking forward to getting the engine back in and bringing this Ghia back to life.

The heartbeats back

DSCF9997DSCF9998DSCF0001DSCF0002Today we rejuvenated the original dash pad for the Ghia. I really wish I had thought to get a before picture. The transformation was really impressive.  I used a product from a company call CarWorx. This product is supposed to last for years. We started by thoroughly cleaning the pad with a degreaser. We then went back over that with a milder soap. Once it was dry, we applied the CarWorx per the instructions. I couldn’t believe it! It really looks brand new. Now for the engine. A complete tune up was done consisting of points, condenser, distributer cap, rotor button, plugs and wires. The valves were adjusted and the oil was changed. A new header and clutch and pressure plate rounded out the engine work. While all that was being done, we painted the engine tins to clean things up a bit. The new header will allow for a little performance upgrade while offering a slightly deeper sound over the stock muffler. After all this work was done, it was test run to be sure it all worked like it was supposed to and now its ready to go back into the car.

FJ Cruiser

DSCF9987DSCF9991DSCF9989DSCF9988The FJ has been getting a little work on here this week. We fixed quite a few dents and finished out some panel body work. We were able to get some primer on here to protect what we have been working on. We did find a  couple of places that need a little more attention after getting primer on here. Nothing really major, but we will take care of it before the final prime. This sure will be a cool vehicle when its done.

Getting there

DSCF9995DSCF9994DSCF9992DSCF9996DSCF9993We had a pretty prosperous day on the Ghia today. We were able to get the wiring pretty well wrapped up. The back up lights were wired up today and the switch tested. Its about the only electrical part that hasn’t been replaced so we tested it to be sure its working properly. Sure enough its working so the back up lights should be fine. We still need a few parts so we moved on to putting the doors on. It took 3 people to make sure they went on without any bumps or bruises but we were able to get them on just fine. They lined up pretty well. Once all the door rubber is installed we may have to tweak a few things but so far so good. The switches have been mounted and looking good in the dash. That lowered stance really looks good on these VW’s. We hope to get the engine back next week from getting a tune up and new exhaust. If we do, we should be able to hook the battery up and start testing all of the circuits. We have gotten many compliments on the color. The owner had a great vision on that. Stay tuned.

FJ

DSCF9971DSCF9973DSCF9972Getting a little work done here on the FJ today. The wheel arch was pretty rusty when we started this restoration but now all that has been replaced with new metal. Here you can see the body work going back into that to make sure the finished product looks smooth and straight. We will continue to work our way around the FJ getting each panel ready for paint. Stay tuned. This one will be pretty cool.

Back together

dscf9801dscf9800dscf9802dscf9821dscf9826dscf9827dscf9843dscf9846dscf9844dscf9847dscf9848 I know. We have been gone for a while. We have been slammed with work over the past 8 weeks or so and its been a quite a few late nights and here at the shop and writing posts just hasn’t been top priority. We did find a couple of guys to work part time hours for us and are really thankful for them. They have helped us out tremendously. We reached a pretty big milestone with the Ghia this week. As you can see its back on all fours. But lets back up a bit to see what all as been done. We ordered a narrowed and adjustable front beam for this Ghia. The owner wanted it to sit lower than factory and an adjustable beam is the best way to get it there. The reason its narrowed too is because when you lower them, the tires sometimes rub on the fender wells.  You narrow it to move the wheels in some to allow for some clearance there. This also opens up more options for different wheels and tires if she desires. We also replaced the tie rods, tie rod ends, new leaf springs, new steering damper, sway bar and master cylinder. We also installed the newly rebuilt pedal assembly along with a new clutch cable and throttle cable. While we were at it, we also replaced the heater box cables. On the dash, we did away with a few holes that will be no longer needed and added one for the Bluetooth microphone. We also had to clean up the radio hole a bit. It was cut a little too large the first time, so we added some metal and reshaped it for a nice fit. While working on the dash we also added a lighted accessory plug to charge cell phones or plug in a GPS. A new pan gasket between the body and pan is held into place with all new body bolts.  Our agenda holds this car getting primer on Friday or at least by the first of the week if Murphy shows up with that law of his.

Ready for final prime

dscf9736dscf9737dscf9738dscf9734dscf9735The body work on the Ghia is pretty much complete. We have all of the body panels straight and ready for the the final prime. We will find a small area here or there while prepping the body for primer but for the most part, its ready. In these pictures show that we still have to sand everything down with 180 before priming. We did get a bit of that done today but not quite the whole car. We also still need to sand the jambs and the dash before priming. We do hope to have that done over the next couple of days. It is a relief though to know that the hard work has paid off and the body is straight and solid.

Crabbie cabbie

DSCF7903DSCF7905DSCF7906DSCF7912DSCF7922DSCF7921DSCF7919Today was very productive. We spent all morning sanding the cab to smooth up the metal so the epoxy would have a nice surface to bite to. After all the panels were sanded, special attention was paid to all the little nooks and crannies, and believe me, there were hundreds of them. After lunch, the cab was moved into the booth and was wiped down many times to ensure a good clean surface. We sprayed epoxy on the bottom of the cab first, then carefully set it down to spray the rest once it had set up some. Paul did a wonderful job getting primer in all the hidden and hard to reach areas. If any are found tomorrow, we will brush them in for coverage. Tomorrow we will also seam seal all of the cracks and crevasses that may hold water. Once that is dry, we will apply 3 good coats of slick sand high build primer and also spray the Raptor liner in the floor and bottom of the cab.

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