Friday, October 28, 2011

Auburn dash panel, gets a new insert.

I decided to make an insert that fits inside my Auburn dash. Originally these dash panels had inserts, either engine turned aluminum or some other material. My insert is missing and I decided to make a new one from a 50's style metal laminate.
This will solve a major problem. It will allow me to drill smaller holes to accommodate my gauges, without disturbing the Auburn dash, until original gauges (out of my price range, for now) are found.

I basically made an accurate 3/4" plywood patters that fits perfectly. The insert material was then attached with double stick tape, and then "routed out" with a router and a flush trim bit.

Here is the result.

Without insert
The material

Finished product, without holes cut

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

The Vinegar solution. Rust removal the stinky way.

Rust, rust, rust, is what you hear, when you talk to anybody who has ever worked on old cars.

Hot rodding seems harder now, than it was 60 years ago, when guys would pick up a 30's car and just build it, without ever mentioning rust.
We are pretty lucky here in California, we don't encounter severe cases, like our East Coast or European counterparts, but we still have to deal with it.
After reading several methods on removing rust, I decided to give vinegar a try and I have to tell you, it freaking works.

Here is how it works:
Get some sort of container, big enough to fit you part.
Buy some cheap 5% white vinegar (I paid $2.10/ gallon at my local Smart and Final store).
Submerse your part and let it sit for three days (might take longer).
Take your part out of the container, it will still look rusty.
Pressure wash it well.
Nice shiny metal will appear.

IMPORTANT: after pressure washing, blow your part off with compressed air and let it sit in the sun to get it completely dry. If you skip this step, rust will form within 10 minutes, it's amazingly disappointing, I tell you.

I like to sand the part a little to get it really clean and lightly spray it with Gibbs, an oily substance that will wipe of with lacquer thinner later, when you are ready for paint.

1936 Ford hood sides before the vinegar treatment. 

The louvered hood sides have been sanded, the solid hood sides after pressure washing before sanding and Gibbs.
Ready for paint.

Saturday, October 8, 2011

Saturday morning fun

Every once in a while a bunch of us get together, with our hot rods, have breakfast, talk shit and simply do what car guys do.
Besides building cars, driving them is what it is all about. Car shows are fun, but they seem superficial compared to white knuckeling a hot rod at 70 mph down a California freeway.