After 3 months away I finally got back to Tarija to push a little and get some progress on the body. A terrible hail storm had kept the shop very busy replacing windshields and fixing damage caused by 3 inch hail stones. It should be noted that all body work was done with heat, hammers and welding. There is no bondo or plastic material in this restoration. If the shop owner can’t straighten it, he replaces it by molding a new panel.
As we get close to assembly I picked up the window and door mechanisms to sand blast and paint.
Most of the mechanisms polished up nicely.
Two products that were worth their weight in the suitcase were Meguiars Plastic Polish and Meguiars Mag & Aluminum Polish. Here you can see the before and after of my odometer lens. The plastic polish (with the help of some 1000 grit sandpaper) also took all of the scratches out of my speedometer lens.
I also blasted and painted the newest addition of parts to replace those previously “lost” in the process.
In my spare time on the weekend I finished off some polishing of the little things. In the end I have 2 home made “Corvair” insignias and 3 donors. I polished up the best two donors and will have the others as spares. I had the donor Chevrolet emblem for the rear deck re-chromed, so I’ll use that instead of the one I made.
I originally had only the black knob for the lights, and no wiper switch or knob. I received several donations and settled on a set of later, chromed knobs, including a windshield washer button. I took the original speedometer apart and cleaned it, setting it on “0” to start out.
The door handles were in need of polishing and the striker plates needed a cleaning with the wire wheel and then a strong polishing compound.
When I ordered the engine to body seals, I got four identical ones that only fit on the sides and rear. I took the old one someone sent me and used it for a template on locally available cloth/rubber material for the front seal that appears to be identical to the seals from the US.
The corner of the rear panel needed a patch to match fit 1961 grill that I got for it. A little welding and it was ready to go. Once blocking and priming was finished a final coat of primer was sprayed on, then the final sanding and painting, starting with the roof, which received a good coat of white, followed by several coats of dusting with pearl and a clear coat.
Then came the rest of the body and interior. Looking through the color books, I decided on this one instead of what I had selected. It comes about as close as possible to the original Tasco Turquoise. It is a 1996 Chrysler Medium Aqua Metallic. Shown is a piece of rear window trim compared to the new paint and the formulation of the new paint from Glasurit.
Here a closeup of the paint with the macro setting of the camera. You can see the high level of metallic particles that help change the color in different light.
Here is a little before-during-and-after of the left front fender and rocker panel.