1. Welcome to For E Bodies Only !

    We are a community of Plymouth Cuda and Dodge Challenger owners. Join now! Its Free!

SURVIVOR vs. GROUND-UP RESTORATION!

Member Restorations

  1. moparlee

    moparlee Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    1,752
    Likes Received:
    832
    Joined:
    Jul 25, 2011
    Location:
    Mid Michigan
    You guys do top notch work. The way the factory did it, but only better.
     
  2. rbbruno3

    rbbruno3 Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    1,682
    Likes Received:
    584
    Joined:
    Jan 1, 2011
    Location:
    upstate , NY
    Sent a PM on the 17th about the decals you sell. No response ??
     
  3. ECS

    ECS Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    354
    Likes Received:
    52
    Joined:
    May 4, 2012
    Here are a few detail comparisons between an Original Chrysler Battery versus a Reproduction Unit.

    01.jpg

    02.jpg

    03.jpg

    04.jpg

    06.jpg
     
  4. rbbruno3

    rbbruno3 Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    1,682
    Likes Received:
    584
    Joined:
    Jan 1, 2011
    Location:
    upstate , NY
    Thanks for getting in touch with me. You guys do great work.
     
  5. ECS

    ECS Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    354
    Likes Received:
    52
    Joined:
    May 4, 2012
    Thank You! We went to great extremes to keep the Paint in spec with the Factory application. Every 6 to 8 inches of the Body was documented with a mil gauge prior to color sanding. After removing approximately 1 to 1.5 mils of original paint from the surface, we then went around the entire vehicle and put primer back in those areas that needed to be built up prior to final Paint. Only one thin coat of Paint was applied to preserve the various "character" marks that were originally provided by the Factory.

    Notice the reference photos that were lying all around the vehicle while the Paint was being re-applied. It was a visual guide to ensure that Steve preserved and correctly restored the original paint patterns & features. It is extremely important to know the exact direction and angle that the Paint was originally applied. If not, you will end up with Paint contradictions that were never executed by the Factory. Study, Research and practice is the key here! One miniscule error within the process and it's back to the drawing board.

    02.jpg
    Underside during Primer phase

    03.jpg
    Primer build up back to correct original mil thickness

    04.jpg
    Primer build up back to correct original mil thickness

    01.jpg
    Color Sanding - Primer "spot" Buildup

    02.jpg
    Prep for Paint

    03.jpg
    Applying Color to Wheel Well Area

    04.jpg
    Applying Color to Under-hood & Engine Compartment
     
  6. ECS

    ECS Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    354
    Likes Received:
    52
    Joined:
    May 4, 2012
    Here are a few shots that show the single (extremely thin) layer of enamel paint that Steve Been applied to the exterior of the Valiant. In the first photo, Tom Barcroft was taking the picture through a window in the paint booth. The next shot shows the car about a half hour after the black had been sprayed. The last one is after the paint was fully cured. This paint step was crucial because we could not wet sand the final finish. It had to go on perfectly to keep from going back and changing the original paint thickness that we had calculated throughout the wet sanding & spot primer steps. Steve practiced quite a bit before attempting this final paint stage.

    01.jpg
    Picture taken (through window) during Paint application

    02.jpg
    30 minutes after Paint was applied

    03.jpg
    Inspecting Paint after the final application
     
  7. ECS

    ECS Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    354
    Likes Received:
    52
    Joined:
    May 4, 2012
    Here are additional photos after the paint had cured and assembly had been started. Notice the appearance of the paint in comparison to the previous photos that were taken while the paint was still wet. The luster stayed the same throughout the entire paint process. It was very important to end up with a finish that did not have to be wet sanded and buffed. FACTORY EXACT was the theme!

    04.jpg
    Valiant after the Paint had cured

    01.jpg
    Valiant Trunk Paint

    02.jpg
    Passenger side - low gloss Blackout treatment.

    03.jpg
    Driver side - low gloss Blackout treatment.
     
  8. ECS

    ECS Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    354
    Likes Received:
    52
    Joined:
    May 4, 2012
    Below is a grouping of photos that illustrate the various layers of original materials used in the paint process on the Challenger. Also shown is a Chrysler animated Step by Step process of their dip procedures.

    paint.jpg
    Before & After Comparisons

    spray-dipping.jpg
    Chrysler Anti-Corrosion "Dip" Process
     
  9. ECS

    ECS Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    354
    Likes Received:
    52
    Joined:
    May 4, 2012
    A frequent OE "mistake" is made when painting components such as Engine parts. The mistake occurs when all of the black pieces are painted at the same time. Since components like the brackets, heat shield, pulleys, etc...... were manufactured and painted by different Vendors, their sheen & appearance would NOT be identical. There were variations of "black" paint that would be evident throughout the Engine. Different components, different shades of black paint!

    02.jpg
    1970 Challenger - 440 4V Engine


    01.jpg
    Before - A/C Clutch


    03.jpg
    After - A/C Clutch
     
  10. ECS

    ECS Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    354
    Likes Received:
    52
    Joined:
    May 4, 2012
    Here are a couple of pictures showing some "odd" characteristics that were found on the back side of the Package Tray. It showed evidence where other units had been stacked on top of each other when the color was applied. You can see the distinct "wet" patterns in the photos below.

    01.JPG

    02.JPG
     
  11. ECS

    ECS Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    354
    Likes Received:
    52
    Joined:
    May 4, 2012
    Here are a few more detailed Before & After comparison photos.


    01.jpg
    Before


    02.jpg
    After


    03.jpg
    Before


    04.jpg
    After


    05.jpg
    Before


    06.jpg
    After


    07.jpg
    Original U Joints - Restored Unit & Un-restored Comparison
     
  12. ECS

    ECS Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    354
    Likes Received:
    52
    Joined:
    May 4, 2012
    Even though the Valiant had low miles, a lot of the bare metal still had a significant coating of rust and pitting all over the surface. It took quite a bit of time and effort to make it look new again. Here are a few more comparison photos.

    08.jpg
    Before - Rusted Drive Shaft

    07.JPG
    Before - Rusted Drive Shaft

    16.jpg
    After - Original Drive Shaft Restored
     
  13. ECS

    ECS Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    354
    Likes Received:
    52
    Joined:
    May 4, 2012
    I had a call earlier this week about the various identification numbers that are found on an Assembly line vehicle. Those aspects were also closely documented throughout this restoration project. Many of the Factory numbers could not be seen once the Valiant was re-assembled. Needless to say they were documented with the same scrutiny as the those that were in clear view. Here are just a few of the parts/photos (in no particular order) that had either the Chrysler Logo, part number or VIN impressions.

    09.JPG

    10.JPG

    11.JPG

    12.JPG

    13.JPG

    14.JPG

    15.JPG

    16.JPG

    17.JPG

    18.JPG

    19.JPG

    20.jpg
     
  14. moparleo

    moparleo Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    5,176
    Likes Received:
    795
    Joined:
    Oct 17, 2011
    Location:
    So. Cal. Riverside area Moreno Valley
    Outstanding restoration and documentation.
     
  15. ECS

    ECS Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    354
    Likes Received:
    52
    Joined:
    May 4, 2012
    Thanks Leo! Here are a few "before" photos of Inspection markings and disassembly features that we documented.

    04.JPG

    05.JPG

    06.JPG

    07.jpg

    08.jpg

    11.JPG

    12.JPG

    13.JPG

    14.JPG
     
  16. ECS

    ECS Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    354
    Likes Received:
    52
    Joined:
    May 4, 2012
    I've been asked many times about the lengths we have gone to "restore" these vehicles. The conversation usually ends up with opinions as to what "restore" actually means. I take the word for what it literally stands for. Many people think that making something look "fresh" is considered "Restored". About 99% of the Cars that are refinished are actually Modified, Altered or Customized. They no longer emulate the original aspects that they were built with. People don't like their vehicle being classified as Modified or Customized because it reminds them of a Car with Mag Wheels and a Blower sticking up out of the Hood. The fact is that if you change ANY aspect of how a Car came from the Factory, you have Modified, Altered or Customized it! The word "Restoration" is loosely and incorrectly used too many times when refurbishing an Automobile.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Automotive_restoration
     
  17. moparleo

    moparleo Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    5,176
    Likes Received:
    795
    Joined:
    Oct 17, 2011
    Location:
    So. Cal. Riverside area Moreno Valley
    Of course very few "restorations" looks actually like factory finished. These cars were mass produced so there was no time or reason to carefully mask all areas or worry about paint thickness. Etc. Cars tend to be over restored or detailed better than they ever were when new. Paint dabs were done for QC purposes, ie. part was torqued/tightened to spec. Was proper part installed per the build sheet.etc...
     
  18. ECS

    ECS Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    354
    Likes Received:
    52
    Joined:
    May 4, 2012
    The process for which the Cars were massed produced is not a factor in the Restoration. A person who restores a car is trying to make the vehicle look original, regardless of the process it takes to accomplish that particular goal. Your comment about the thickness of the paint is a good example. The Factory paint was engineered to represent a specific mil thickness. That was how Chrysler Corporate was able to budget for the amount of paint materials that they would use throughout the year. Since the paint was applied by Assembly Line Workers (Human effort), the exact thickness varied from vehicle to vehicle. When "restoring" a Car back to its original parameters, you need to document the paint on the vehicle (if it is still original) or default to the engineering specifications if the original paint is no longer on the Car.

    There is no such thing as an "over restored" Car! That phrase is an oxymoron. The word "restore" means to put something back to its original condition. If it is not brought back to its original condition it is Modified, Altered or Customized. The Hobby has adopted the concept of being "over restored" because they don't like their Cars being referred to as "customized" when they fall short of being able to duplicate a (correct) Factory appearance.
     
    Last edited: Nov 21, 2013
  19. Ray

    Ray Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    521
    Likes Received:
    19
    Joined:
    Sep 5, 2011
    Location:
    K Pax
    ECS

    The process for which the Cars were massed produced is not a factor in the Restoration. A person who restores a car is trying to make the vehicle look original, regardless of the process it takes to accomplish that particular goal. Your comment about the thickness of the paint is a good example. The Factory paint was engineered to represent a specific mil thickness. That was how Chrysler Corporate was able to budget for the amount of paint materials that they would use
    throughout the year. Since the paint was applied by
    Assembly Line Workers (Human effort), the exact
    thickness varied from vehicle to vehicle. When
    "restoring" a Car back to its original parameters, you
    need to document the paint on the vehicle (if it is still
    original) or default to the engineering specifications if
    the original paint is no longer on the Car.


    ----------------------------------------------------------

    There is no such thing as an "over restored" Car! That phrase is an oxymoron. The word "restore" means to put something back to its original condition. If it is not brought back to its original condition it is Modified, Altered or Customized. The Hobby has adopted the concept of being "over restored" because they don't like their Cars being referred to as "customized" when they fall short of being able to duplicate a (correct) Factory appearance.

    You can restore something to it's original appearance, but it is only original once.
    Over restored would be something on the order of all body gaps being even, something these cars never were new. Customized, would Be to alter the appearance so as to make it unique or different then the rest.
     
    Last edited: Nov 21, 2013
  20. ECS

    ECS Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    354
    Likes Received:
    52
    Joined:
    May 4, 2012
    You have changed the definition of the word "restore" to accommodate your agenda/perception. If the gaps in the body were not consistent and you alter their original status, you did not "restore" that particular feature. You modified, altered or customized that feature. (Even using your interpretation.) If you change the original status, you did not restore it! It is impossible to "over restore" anything. Putting those two words together is a contradiction of terms. That's like saying you can be a little bit pregnant. (lol)

    Here is the definition of "restore".

    re·store (r-stôr, -str)
    tr.v. re·stored, re·stor·ing, re·stores
    1. To bring back into existence or use; reestablish: restore law and order.
    2. To bring back to an original condition: restore a building. See Synonyms at revive.
    3. To put (someone) back in a former position: restore the emperor to the throne.
    4. To make restitution of; give back: restore the stolen funds.