Details and Capabilities
Wood Replacement and Repairs
We use state of the art epoxies and fillers to repair wood, if it is a condition to successfully allow repairs. If not, we can replace all or whatever portion needs replacement using the finest kiln dried hardwoods. We use the traditional mortise and tendon construction techniques as used in the day. This provides interlocking joints that are not only strong, but provide the flexibility required.
Metal Fabrication and Repairs
We have English wheels, beading machines and a complete welding shop ready to repair or replace whatever metal components are in need. We use hammer and dolly, pick and file and heat shrinking techniques to restore most panels and fenders to their original shape. We avoid any plastic filler materials.
Instrumentation and Electrical
Your instruments will be refurbished cosmetically and repaired mechanically to work and look like new. We also will carefully remove old wiring looms and replace them with new ones that are marque and period correct in color and appearance. Switches are taken down and contacts repaired, small items such as horn or blower motors are likewise over hauled and repaired to be like new.
Mechanical, Engine and Chassis
The complete chassis is taken down to the last nut and bolt, carefully photographed and cataloged. Each piece is examined for wear and tear and an experienced technician will determine if replacement or repair is in order. Brake and engine components are the most critical. Mechanical brakes on pre-war cars can be made to work like new or better by careful replacement or repair of each component. We are familiar with vacuum brake assisted cars as well as servo-actuated systems. Engine over haul required the thorough cleaning of every component, including the inside of the water jacket. This will assure proper cooling and heat transfer in the finished product. Each item is inspected for cracks or fatigue points to assure reliability in the future. Babbitt and insert bearings are replaced and line bored to factory specifications. Connecting rods are re-conditioned or replaced if found to be fatigued. Cam shaft bearings are replaced and the cam will be reground to original specifications or a customer request an improved more modern “touring” grind can be incorporated. Tappets are replaced or reconditioned. Valves are replaced with modern stainless steel to withstand today’s ethanol and lead free fuels. Valve seats may also be replaced if required and valve guides always replaced. Many Pre-War vehicles have lower gearing ratios for use on the gravel and dirt roads prevalent in the day. Today we want to be able to drive our cars comfortably on city streets as well as the freeway. We can provide proper gearing and even over drives to accomplish this task.
Wheels and Tires
We recommend replacement of the wood in wooden wheels unless they are in very good condition. These items take a lot of abuse and stress and it is imperative they be in tip top condition. Wire wheels are taken down, each component inspected, re-plated or repainted as required. We also provide a complete tire balancing and shaving to produce a wheel and tire assembly that is perfectly round and balanced for a smooth and safe ride. If long distance touring is your goal, we can recommend radial tires for touring, then switching back to the more authentic bias tire for show and around town use.
This is an area many times over looked, We not only completely restore the outer shells, eliminating scratches and dents and then re-plating to new condition, but the reflectors and internal adjustment mechanism is restored to its original working condition so the beam can be properly focused. Reflectors can be silver plated as original or given a more modern nickel and aluminum coating which gives slightly higher reflectivity, without the maintenance required to occasionally polish.
Painting and Finishing
We usually use modern materials on full restorations to achieve a like new look and provide easy maintenance and longevity. This will be comparable to paints used on the finest of the new cars. On preservation vehicles we can provide touchup in authentic lacquers and enamels as used in the day, so as to maintain the authenticity.
We like to use the finest leathers and fabrics to achieve a vintage look and yet can be easily maintained and with good longevity. There are modern top materials and trunk coverings that look like the original material, yet are made with modern technology and have many years life in them than the original materials. We prefer horsehair padding to modern foam, for not only the proper look and feel, but also longevity.