Yesterday afternoon I was in the bunker using a temporary free space to change the outer tie rod ends on my Fiat Punto. Working inside with the 4 kW heater at full blast was definitely better than doing it on the shingles in my driveway. The temperature is below freezing around the clock now. The work took about 45 minutes (including a coffee break), and the new tie rod ends means I only have to change a couple of rusty brake lines to pass the bi-annual technical inspection. Oh, and the light above the license plate. But I digress …
After cleaning up after myself I rifled through some of the Øystein’s fancy new tools, among them a brand new Fein Multimaster! Since his 1750 GTV is still at the bodyshop I called him up immediately and asked to borrow it to remove the sound deadening on the Montreal floors. He accepted after I threw on-call tech support for his upcoming Alfa forum upgrade into the barter 😉 I looked at a Fein in the past finding it rather expensive, so this was quite the lucky break.
I did a really quick test of the oscillating knife which is the Fein Multimaster, and boy does it eat away at the sticky asphalt-y stuff! It’s still going to be a lot of elbow grease involved, but now in only half the time.
Allright, this is the part of the restoration I’ve been dreading all along; renewing the interiors. Drilling out screws in the suspension, removing rust spots, battling with stuck nuts, identifying bad parts and painting everything was fun, tangible and rewarding. Fixing up the interiors, on the other hand, is probably not something my hands were meant to do. The job’s too fiddly, the materials too fragile and I’m not sure how to go about it. Nevertheless, it has to be done since it looks rather awful with its varying shades of orangy red and yellow crumbs of disintegrating seat stuffing everywhere.
Some of the sound proofing mats were already removed by Frode when he did his cutting and welding, but there’s plenty more to remove. The asphalt mats on the floor itself have barely been touched, and I’m currently researching the best way to remove the sticky stuff (read: drinking coffee while googling and getting lost in other people’s restoration writeups). Using an oscillating knife-thingy or dry ice looks promising, but we’ll see.
I also found a leftover from some poor chap at the Bertone factory; a piece of string carefully bent and twirled into a hook, left preserved under the sound proofing under the passenger’s side seat. I wonder if he knows where it ended up?
La Tempesta is again back in the concrete bunker (colocquially known as “the garage”) awaiting funds. We went to Frode’s place to pick it up Thursday evening with a friend of mine’s enclosed car trailer, hauling it 30 kms behind Bjarne’s Volvo V70. Roughly about half the work is done since the driver’s side is left untouched to be used as a reference for the passenger’s side. Frode have prepared the bare metal for storage, and in the weeks before the winter sets in I’m going to clean the cabin of as much sound deadening material as possible.
I forgot to bring my camera as usual, so the only pictures of the move is a couple of mobile phone snapshots. Once the car was parked safely in the bunker, it was too dark to take any pictures with the flashless phone camera.
The funds for the body repairs are exhausted for now. I thought I had set aside a fair amount of money for the rust repairs and replacement panels and rockers, but it has turned out to be a bigger job than originally planned. That’s okay though, because I honestly had no idea how much job it was going to be. La Tempesta is coming back to my own garage sometime next week, where I will start removing sound deadening material from the floors and generally try to improve Frode’s working conditions while he’s welding and cutting. Frode is currently preparing the exposed metal bits for long-ish term storage in a cold garage. I.e.: covering everything in epoxy primer and sealing the welds (or something to that effect).
It’s going back in February/March next year if everything pans out.
The car is able to stand on its own wheels and can be transported on a closed car trailer. The garage gang is serious about byuing a 15 kW heater so we can sweat it out during the cold months. My space is currently occupied by yet another Lancia Delta. Erlend have been shopping again and brought home a pearl white Delta from the UK. Øystein’s GTV is still a long way from being done at Birk Ltd, but when it’s done it’s going to be absolutely gorgeous! How can a bare metal restored 1750 GTV not be? 😉