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6 Effective Tips to Restoring Classic Cars

Restoring classic cars will always be one of the most rewarding activities any car enthusiast can do. Transforming an old classic vehicle in all of its glory is nothing less than a work of art. However, though it’s an exciting project to tackle, you’ll need to do a couple of things to ensure the restoration process goes smoothly. After all, these aren’t your ‘ordinary cars.’

Here are six tips to achieve a better and more efficient restoration project — allowing you to get the most out of the car.

Inspect the Car

For big trucks, getting parts from Cummins is the best choice when making repairs. However, since you are dealing with vintage cars here, it may be wise to go to the actual manufacturer and see if they still carry parts for that make and model.

You’ll also need to have a plan beforehand — and the best way to do this is by inspecting the car. Give the vehicle a thorough look over and a parts catalog relevant to the model you’d want to restore to get the best results. Make sure you check from top to bottom and inside and out. Doing this gives you a more accurate idea of what repairs you need to do with the vehicle.

Determine the Level of Car Restoration

When you’ve assessed the car, decide on what ‘level’ of restoration, you want your car to have. These include:

  • Driver Restoration — This task includes replacing parts and minor, aesthetic changes.
  • Car Show — If you plan on participating in your vehicle in a car, this restoration process is ideal, but it requires a professional’s hand.
  • Concours — This is the highest level of car restoration and involves part replacement to intensive bodywork.

classic ford mustang steering wheel and gauge panel

Get the Right Space and Equipment

Unless you want to outsource the project to a professional, the biggest outlay you’ll need to address is investing in the materials and space required to finish the restoration to a high standard. Knowing which tools to purchase beforehand will help you stay on budget and save you lots of time — and energy. These include:

  • Electrical tools
  • Engine crane and stand
  • Blowtorch
  • Welder

It’s best to rent these tools or have certain parts be done by a professional to save you money in the long run while ensuring your car gets adequately restored.

Disassemble the Car

Taking a car apart is the easiest part of restoring it. You’ll need to remove its doors, hood, fenders, trim, seats, and the rest of its interior. Before doing this, ensure you have plenty of space to avoid losing parts by creating organized storage and workspace beforehand. Plus, never rely on your memory and document the entire process to serve as reference material when you start reassembling the car.

Reassemble Thoroughly

Reassembling the car is the longest and most challenging step of the entire process, and though it’s easy to become over-ambitious, it’s best to take it slow and have patience. That’s because rushing through it can lead to accidentally damaging expensive exteriors or breaking a rare part while over-tightening fasteners.

Reinspect and Take for a Test Drive

When you finish all significant tasks on the restoration project, make sure to run a detailed inspection before taking the car to your town’s next car show to ensure it’s in its best condition. It’s also wise to take it for a test drive to ensure everything is okay.

Whether your beloved classic car has broken down or bought a vintage vehicle that needs upgrading, restoring it can be a fun, rewarding, and lucrative process. With the tips mentioned, you can restore even the most complex of cars allowing you to bring any classic car back to its former glory.

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