Most people are anxious for the day they can retire from work. But if your dream is to restore a vintage car after you retire, you're probably completely stoked. Restoring a vintage car takes a lot of time and patience. It can also take a lot of money, too, particularly from learning through trial and error. Here are several things to keep in mind when restoring a vintage car.
Choose carefully by looking at the frame
When choosing the car you want to restore, you'll want to start with one that has a frame in decent shape. The frame should be straight, solid, and not rusted or rotted. A bad frame can make a huge difference in your ability to replace various parts. If the hood, trunk, doors, and windows don't close properly or there are significant differences in the gaps, it's safe to assume the frame is damaged and move on to find another vehicle. When in doubt, a collision repair shop can use lasers to measure the body to check for frame damage.
Consider the availability of authentic parts
For the best in authenticity, you'll want to avoid using aftermarket or fabricated parts whenever possible. Obviously, the best way to do this is to restore a car that was popular back in the day. If you restore a car that was manufactured in small quantities, you may have a very difficult time locating authentic parts. For example, Ford only made 107 of their 1964 GT40 model, which can make finding authentic parts extremely difficult should you be lucky enough to discover one that is waiting to be restored. However, if you have the finances, time, and patience—by all means, restore that car! One sold in an auction for $7,000,000.
Overestimate everything and budget accordingly
Bringing a vintage car back to life may take more time than you anticipate. Therefore, it's a good idea to overestimate everything so you can compensate for it in your finances, time, effort, and patience. It's a good idea to always expect the unexpected. Until you start removing parts and doing the work, you may not know how much work the car will need. For example, there may be significant rust underneath the car seats, which will need to be dealt with in order for the car to be safe for the road.
These types of problems can be challenging and costly. For more information or assistance, contact companies like Reggie's Garage.