So you’ve decided to restore a car, great, now what?
There are a number of things to take into consideration before you start getting grease under your finger nails. Car people are a group that are willing to share their passion and knowledge freely with anyone who wants to join the ranks. No matter what type of vehicle or what direction you take with it, you will be readily accepted.
A great place to start your adventure is to attend a number of different car shows in your area. Look at the various cars on display. Talk to the owners, they love to talk about their cars. Ask questions about where they found parts, who did work on their cars and what was the most difficult part of the restoration for them. For your first restoration project you might want to consider something that is complete and drive able. A car that someone else completely dismantled and lost interest in is probably not the best jumping off point. It will be difficult to tell if the complete car is sitting there in all of those boxes and if it was carefully taken apart or not. Know your mechanical ability, your tools and the space where you will work on the vehicle. You will always learn something no matter if this is your first or fifth project and you will never have every tool. That’s why the local auto parts stores rent tools.
The more popular cars will have the best selection of parts and the most information available but they will also have the least number of project cars still sitting around. Consider a number of different makes and models and let the hunt begin. The internet is a great starting point. There are a large number of collector car sites that have classified sections for older, classic cars. Search for forums on the web too. There are forums for just about every vehicle produced. These forums are free and provide a wealth of ideas and techniques as well as classified sections and links to parts suppliers specific to that vehicle. Search for car clubs both on line and in your local community. Like forums, clubs offer help and share information to anyone interested. Finally check your local print publications and keep an eye out as you are driving through neighborhoods. That old car sitting in the driveway might now be for sale and calling out your name.
Collecting and restoring cars is a hobby. Take your time, enjoy the journey, ask questions and share your information with others. Car people are a world wide community with a common bond, a love for the automobile.