All posts in Auto Restoration

Overhaul Your Clunker: A Guide to Making Your Dream Car

Do you have an old clunker taking up space in your garage or backyard? Perhaps it’s taken you months or even years to muster up enough energy to finish the project. It may seem daunting and nearly impossible to complete a task like overhauling a vehicle. Fortunately, you don’t have to do it completely alone! If you follow the right steps you can end up with the car of your dreams.

Frame Restoration

Begin at the very bottom of the vehicle and work your way out when starting your overhaul project. If your vehicle is a frame and chassis then you will want to remove all interference’s so you can separate them. Once they are separated you will have the option to bead blast the metal chassis or hand sand it. Apply a nice base coat usually black or gray to protect the metal once it is cleaned and repaired if there was rust.

Body Work

Once you have the chassis repaired to your liking it will be time to move on to the body. Bodywork takes time in order to be done correctly. Some people choose to take their vehicles to a body shop for proper body filler, sanding and painting. You can shop around to ensure you find a body shop that meets your requirements and price range.

Engine /Transmission / Brakes

What better way to get your old clunker running than with a new or refurbished crate engine and transmission. Crate engines and transmissions come in different sizes and horsepower ratings. You will want to choose the one that best suits your overhaul needs. Will you be creating a high horsepower weekend drag car or one you can drive daily? Give all four brake calipers and pads a good check to make sure that they operating correctly. It can be fairly inexpensive to change the rotors and pads. Do your research when it comes to finding reasonable pricing for parts. If you’re worried your vehicle might be a little old for the latest auto gear, shops like Reggie’s Garage specialize in classic car parts.

Affordable Options for Repair

When starting an overhaul project the list of things to repair can be very long. You have to ask yourself if you’re capable of DIY work on the vehicle. Doing the repair work by yourself can save you a lot of money, but not everyone can do welding and bodywork. Your best option may be to shop around and see who has the cheapest rates to perform the work you need.

DIY overhaul projects can save you money and give a certain sense of ownership. The downside to repairing the vehicle yourself is the time it will take you to complete the overhaul. With a packed schedule, you may opt for hiring a professional. One thing is for sure, you won’t ever look at that old clunker the same way once you’re finished overhauling it!

7 Classic Cars Just Begging To Be Restored

If you like repairing old cars, there are seven classic cars that are begging to be restored. Locating parts for these vehicles won’t be very difficult, so major delays will never be a huge concern.

1963-1965 Buick Riviera

Although the Buick Rivera doesn’t have a typically size, it is still a fast and powerful vehicle. In its era, the Rivera was a well-designed car, which is why many people are now restoring it. 

1953-1954 Chevrolet Bel Air

The Chevrolet Bel Air is a popular collector’s item because the replacement parts are quite affordable. Automotive part manufacturers also offer a variety of upgrades for the Bel Air that improve performance, such as disc brake conversions.

1971-1972 Pontiac GTO

If you are on a budget, the GTO should be considered since it is very affordable. However, if you have money to spend, purchase one of the earlier vehicles instead. Automotive parts manufacturers produce plenty of parts and components for the GTO that increase gas mileage. However, the vehicle is not in high demand, so it won’t have a great resale value when you list it for sale.

1961-1966 Lincoln Continental

Among collectors, the Lincoln Continental is a popular car. The replacement parts for this vehicle, however, are somewhat limited. Though, if you can find the components, you can purchase them at low prices. 

1928-1931 Ford Model A

This car is a great choice for rookie restorers; the demand for the vehicle is low, and the parts are readily available. If you run into problems during the restoration process, you can easily contact an expert for advice. The only disadvantage is that you may not earn much money when you sell the vehicle. However, if you want to test your restoration skills, you can tackle this project without spending thousands of dollars.

1951-1954 Packard

In the 50s, Packards were efficiently-built cars. Today, replacement parts can be purchased at low prices, but trim components are not very easy to find. To restore the vehicle, you must join a car club so that you can get helpful advice and store recommendations. Tackling this project is high recommended because the Packard sells easily.

1964-1968 Ford Mustang

The Ford Mustang is another ideal vehicle for beginner car restorers. Parts for this vehicle are readily available in almost every city. Beginners typical buy early Mustangs since they are easy to sell.

Each of these vehicles are worth restoring. For additional advice about cars, contact the experts at Speedy Apollo Auto Service Centres or local service center.

5 Signs Your Vehicle Needs a New Engine

The engine is the heart of your vehicle. It is what gives your car or truck life. Most drivers are confident that they know their vehicle inside and out. With technology now in days you’re not as likely to have engine trouble, but it is still possible that it could happen. However, even if you’re at one with your car, it can be difficult to know when something changes. This is especially true when it comes to your car’s engine. Luckily, though, there are 5 signs that you can keep an eye out for which will let you know that your vehicle needs a new engine.

1. Gas is Gone in an Instant

One way to tell that your engine is breaking down is by how fast the gas in your tank empties out. If there is something wrong with your vehicle’s engine, there will be a quick decrease in the gas mileage. For instance, if you notice that you usually get 20 mpg on the road but are now limited to 15, it may be time to bring your vehicle to the auto shop. This does not mean that you need a new engine, but it does show a possibility. You may just have something as simple as a leak in your gas line or a problem with you fuel injectors.

2. Recent Knocking Noise

Another way to tell that your vehicle may be experiencing engine trouble is that all of a sudden a knocking noise develops. This noise will usually be brought upon when the car speeds up. The noise can be the result of something as simple as a bad tank of gas, but it’s better to be safe than sorry. That’s because this noise could actually be due to small detonations in the engine that could cause irreversible damage if not taken care of.

3. Car Turns Over But Doesn’t Start

If the engine is malfunctioning, it may be difficult to start up the car. Remember, if the car turns over, you can rule out the issue stemming from the battery. The same goes for the starter and alternator, as long as the vehicle starts. According to Mike’s Auto Towing, when the car starts hard, all fingers should point to the engine.

4. Vehicle is Backfiring or Stalling

Of course there are times where this doesn’t indicate engine failure, but when a car backfires or stalls there is a possibility that it is due to an engine problem. If it’s not the engine itself, it could be a problem that could damage the engine.

5. Odor From the Exhaust

Nowadays, most vehicles run without giving off any smell. However, if you notice that all of a sudden your exhaust smells bad or different from before, you should bring your car straight to the mechanic to get it checked.

It’s clear that if you experience any of the signs listed above in your vehicle, you need to get it looked at right away. After all, it’s better to be overcautious than not cautious enough. By getting your car inspected, you can avoid serious damage from occurring later on.

Top 4 Tips for Finding Replacement Parts for Your Truck

Nothing halts your plans faster than when your truck breaks down. Often older trucks are extremely difficult to find quality replacement parts for. If this is a problem you have not experienced yet, you are in for quite a lot of hassle and run around if you do not know where to turn to get the right parts. To avoid being hung out to dry, let us talk about some possible ways you can find the right truck parts to get your truck up and running again.

1. Searching Your Local Area

Often you can find parts for your truck by searching online ads in your local area. The great thing about online ads is that the sellers do not always want to charge you an arm and a leg for the part you are looking for. In some cases, they do not even want money for the part at all. Many online local ad sellers are just as happy to barter for other items you might have laying around the house that they either want or need for their own purposes. In a lot of cases, the part you are looking for has been taking up room in someone’s garage, and the person has been trying to get their garage space back. This can potentially give you a lot of room to negotiate for a low price.

2. Specialty Orders

Hunting around online, you might find websites that have been in business for a while, helping people locate hard to find parts for their trucks and industrial vehicles. Specialty shops like 99 Truck Parts & Industrial Equipment Ltd. make it easy to order parts you need online, both new and used. If these online businesses do not have the item in stock, they will likely know how to get the item or explain to you how you can find it, since dealing in hard to find truck parts is their forte.

3. Government Auctions

Another way to potentially run across replacement truck parts is by checking out a local government auction in your area. The government regularly makes information about these auctions available to the average citizen through online websites, such as USgovernmentauctions.net. Government auctions can be a great place for the truck enthusiast who needs or wants to find trucks to cannibalize or scavenge parts from.

4. The Boneyard

Every day people have their old car or truck towed off to the boneyard. A lot of times, these are wrecked vehicles, and they are good for little more than to salvage parts out of them. Sometimes this can be a roll of the dice looking for replacement parts in the boneyard, but it can also often be a good place to check, if all else fails—especially if the part you are looking for is not too uncommon.

 

Now that you have some idea where to look to find that replacement truck part you’ve been looking for, it’s time to make some calls and get that truck of yours up and running again. With a little effort and by showing off your mechanical abilities, you’ll have that truck purring like new in no time at all, allowing you to get back to those plans that were temporarily put on hold.

How to Troubleshoot Engine Problems of Your Classic Car

Troubleshooting problems in an engine of a classic car is more of an art than a skill. Most people, when they sense a problem, will simply replace parts in the engine until the problem has been resolved. This is not a particularly effective method and has the tendency to be very expensive. Luckily, there are easier methods to figure out what is wrong with a car’s engine.

Types of Classic Car Engine Problems

There are seven different categories into which an engine problem could fall. They have their own diagnostic leads, which will make figuring out what is wrong a much smoother process.

Rough Idle:

If a car is experiencing a rough idle, then there is the chance that a carburetor has come loose. There could also be a leak in the vacuum or breaker points that could have become worn down or wrongly adjusted so that they are no longer in the correct position. There is also a chance the polarity of the coil could be wrong.

Pinging:

You can usually detect pinging when your car is accelerating quickly or when towing a load. Pinging typically means that there is some combustion problem in the engine. This is usually a result of there being an excessive amount of lead in the ignition or the combustion chambers being inundated with carbon.

Hesitation:

If a classic car is experiencing hesitation, then it is usually a result of the pump stroke of the accelerator being weak, the vacuum advance not working at all, or the screws from the idle mix being set incorrectly.

Stalling:

This could be a simple result of the idle speed being lower than optimal. It could also be a result of there being a large leak in the vacuum, a problem which needs to be addressed immediately. If neither of these two issues are the problem, then you may want to check your ignition points, and see if your engine valves are leaking.

Oil Smoke on Startup:

If there is oil smoke being produced when the engine is being started, then that usually means that the valve guides or seals have been worn down to the point where they no longer function. You may even have a problem with a blown head gasket, which allows oil to leak into the compression cylinder.

High Amount of Oil Consumption:

If the car seems to be using more oil than it used to, your car may not have oil of the correct viscosity or that the oil has been diluted with gasoline. There is also a chance that the ring on the piston has been worn and needs to be replaced.

If you need extra assistance with identifying and repairing classic engine problems, consider the help of professional engine repair services like Speedy Brake and Apollo Muffler or a shop near you. However, by using this rough diagnostic guide, it is possible to locate the source of the engine problem in a short period of time. This saves the vehicle’s functionality, as well as a large amount of money for the owner of the car.

 

About the author: A recent college graduate from University of San Francisco, Anica loves dogs, the ocean, and anything outdoor-related. She was raised in a big family, so she’s used to putting things to a vote. Also, cartwheels are her specialty. You can connect with Anica here. This article uses information from Speedy Brake and Apollo Muffler.