|Not long after I got the E-Type.|
|British Car Festival at Fairhope Beach|
|A sailboat beached by Hurricane Ivan|
Many of the components under the bonnet (hood) had surface rust and generally rundown looking. The wiring was kinda scary, even though it didn't give much trouble. One carburetor was prone to leak and it had a tendency to just run bad sometimes. But I still drove it occasionally.
In June of 2004, right after my nephew had started construction on my garage, I had major heart surgery. While I was recuperating, Mike Darby, my very good friend, rebuilt the carbs for me and my nephew finished construction on the garage.
We had moved to a lot of about 5 acres so there was plenty of room to build a BIG garage. It turned out to be 40x60 feet with 12 ft ceilings (my intention was to put a lift in it at some point). I figured that I might as well have it insulated while it was being built, it would never be easier or cheaper. We air conditioned it and before anything was put inside, we put an epoxy coating on the floor (one of the best things I did or should I say, my nephew did.).
Once I got the engine out, I pulled the frames off of the monocoque body tub, took them to the blaster's to have them media blasted.
After he finished and had them primed, he casually mentioned to me that there were several holes rusted through them. I couldn't believe it. These frames hold the engine, the entire front suspension, radiator, bonnet... everything that is in front of the driver. They HAVE to be structurally sound (and they aren't real cheap) sigh....
There was nothing I could do but order a new set of frames.
I had done some research and learned that there was a guy in England that made the absolute best frames for E-Types, Uryk at E-Type Fabs so I ordered some.
Meanwhile, I pulled out the old nasty looking wiring harness, ordered new and started stripping the paint off of the bulkhead. My plan at this point was to paint the bulkhead and frames with as close to the same color as the car as I could get mixed locally.
There was welding like I have never seen. I'm not totally sure what made me decide to take the car apart further... I think it was just the fact that since I had gone this far, I might as well do it right. I removed the interior, and the rear suspension.
There was nothing detectable wrong with the differential, so my plan was to just clean it up.
|Fitting the frames before painting the body|
There were a few things that I wanted to correct, and I knew that the only way was to paint the whole car so with a great degree of trepidation, I started sanding on what to most people looked like a pretty darn good paint job on the car body..
During all of this, my friends Mike Darby and Rodney McDonald and Stuart Waddington were a big help. I learned a lot about bodywork, which before now I had never experienced.
Once I had the body like I wanted it and it was approved by Mike,
|Primed and ready for paint|
I have to say this has been quite a learning experience, and a lot of fun. It just might not be the last.