Over the past year I've had a few early Porsche 911's to restore the interiors on. One was a '65 in Bahamas yellow with a black interior and the other was a '66 in Slate grey with a red interior.
In both cases I decided to use interior kits from Autos International who are reputable Porsche interior specialists. I purchased carpet, headliner and panel kits as well as seat covers and new molded latex seat foams.
While I could make all of these things from scratch, it saves a fair amount of time and money to just buy these components already sewn. Whenever I use kits from another source I always inspect the build quality and especially the stitching. I often run components through my sewing machine again just to tighten up seams that might not be up to my standard, or make alterations if necessary.
It's interesting to follow original brochure literature from the time - it shows that the carpets on these were usually black velour, the seats came with either embossed (leather or vinyl) seat centers or hounds tooth in corresponding colours.
As usual, I started by documenting and restoring all the interior components first. I strip and repaint all the seat frames, replace or restore all the seat foams and armrest foams. Then recover the various components with new leather or vinyl covers, trimmed as original with the hand stitching as required.
I always take loads of pics to capture all the trimming details as I take things apart so I can restore each component properly.
The first thing I install on the car is the headliner and all the insulation -
Then comes carpet - in both cases the customers chose to use German square weave carpet which was the Porsche factory standard on earlier cars like the 356. It's a good looking carpet and its very durable as well. The rear areas always require some work in smoothing out the contours with underlay before the carpet is glued in place.
Next step is to install the panels. First I make sure the inner door mechanisms are all installed and working smoothly. Then make sure to add vapor barrier before installing the door panels. The rear panels always require a bit of coaxing and attention to detail to get in properly. Sometimes carpet needs to be packed out in corners to avoid gaps.
I had already re-trimmed all the original waist rails and armrests so these components were all ready to install with the panels...
The dash top and lower dash surround both had to be restored and re-trimmed separately. These I restored with new foam and leather/vinyl respectively. Then re-installed to the car with the addition of some new wood and freshly restored gauges to finish the dash.
Next I finished the rear seat areas by installing all my freshly restored rear seats...
You'll notice on the '65 car in black, the rear seat cushions had leather skirts glued and hand stitched to the carpet around the lower cushions. A neat detail found on these earlier cars!
Then came time to install my finished front seats to finish off the interior..
Last but not least - the boot interior carpets were installed -
And there you have it! - 2 beautiful early Porsche 911's with freshly restored interiors.
I've always had a huge love of Porsche and the clean lines and styling of the early 911's make it a timeless classic.
It's always an honor getting to work on cars like these - Inevitably I was feeling so inspired that I went and built a few scale models of these cars as I was working on the real thing lol. But that's for another article...
Until next time -
In a recent trip to Ikea, I picked up another glass display cabinet to contain my growing collection of 1/24 scale model car kits. I thought I would share some pics of the collection...
Each piece is a plastic or resin kit that I had to build and paint and detail myself. I've never been one to collect diecast or "finished" pieces, I very much enjoy the building process and researching each model to get the details and factory colours right.
The first shelf features my collection of Mercedes 300SL's - the 722 racer is a Monogram kit, the silver gullwing SLR beside it is a Revell kit, the sand coloured roadster is the Itilleri kit and the metallic sage green gullwing is the new Tamiya kit.
Next is a shelf of Jaguars: The D-Type is a modified Tamiya slot car kit, The XKSS is a Revell kit, The white XK 120 a Revell kit, and the C-type is a K&R replicas kit
Next we have a group of Porsche's all of which are built from the excellently detailed Fujimi kits, there are a pair of early 911's, a blue 356 cabrio, and a blue 356 speedster, and a light green 356 coupe
Next is a shelf of some miscellaneous cars: a Revell MGB, an AMT 300SL, a Momogram TR3, and aTamiya VW beetle
The next shelf features my collection of big Healey's - all made using the same old Revell kit from the 60's (heavily modified to make the various marques): the blue&white 100/6 (stock kit), the blue 100/4 BN1, the green 100/S noj393, and the florida green&white 100/6 BN6
Next we have the pre & post war cars: a Revell Bentley blower, a black Heller Alfa Romeo, a Monogram Bugatti and a Monogram MG-TC
Moving along with some more British classics: a Gunze Bugeye Sprite, Revell MGB, Gunze TR2, and a Tamiya Mini Cooper S
In the Japanese section we have a Hasegawa Mazda Cosmo, a Tamiya Honda S500, and a Hasegawa Toyota S2000
No collection would be complete without some Ferrari's: here's an Italeri 250 SWB, an Academy "California" and a Fujimi 250 GTO
A bit of a mix here: in the back a Revell Porsche 904, a Monogram Jaguar E-type coupe, and some Revell E-type roadsters
A couple of Lotus's help fill out the British section; a lotus super 7 by Tamiya, and an elan made by Gunzi
Finally to top it off, a shelf of Aston Martin's: a Doyshua DB5, DB4, and a Porfil24 DB2/3
Of course there's plenty of kits still in the box ready to build:
Until next time -
It's that time of year again, the days are getting longer, warmer (some days), spring is in the air!
This week I put a few days of work in on getting the old MGB ready for the season.
Back in November she quit on me one day and I wasn't able to get her running again, being that it was already safe at home, I left it alone for the winter until just recently.
I gave her an oil change, full lube, new plugs, new coil, and new condenser, and topped it off with some fresh gas (I had drained the tank back in November)
Sure enough she started right up and runs as smooth as ever!
So yesterday I went and got her insurance & plates renewed and got all my application forms to apply for some Collector Vehicle license plates.
Today I went about installing and wiring my new Lucas fog lamps that I got for Christmas. When it was all done and working, I took her out for her first drive of the season! It was an amazingly beautiful day to say the least!
When I returned home I parked the car outside and took all the necessary pics I need for the insurance company. She's looking really good so I thought I would share some of them...
Until next time -
Classic auto enthusiast, upholsterer, coach trimmer, and fine scale modeler.