Detailing a 275GTB/4

Detailing a 275GTB/4

four cam

I’ve been working on a nice 275GTB/4. My customer wanted to talk to me about showing this car at Cavallino and how I felt about helping him take it there. I confirmed he wanted to take it to Cavallino 2015, about four months away, and not Cavallino 2016! Every Ferrari Restoration shop knows how much time it can take to detail a car for Concours, especially when it’s a car that was not restored from scratch. This car, was a very nice car, but in the light of “Concours Judging” there was a lot of work to do. I wanted to rise to the challenge of the work, but I had to make it clear, I would give it my best shot without guarantees for an award because of the time frame of all the work.

On first impressions, the engine compartment was nicely detailed, but a closer look revealed some issues that could get points deductions in judging.
air cleaner

The paint on the air cleaner top was uneven, and rough. It was also dented. The paint would have to be stripped off the whole assembly, the top fixed and everything repainted to match the rest of the engine compartment.
engine detail

The plating on the fuel rails was wearing thin so they would have to be removed and replated. The water pipes were all wrong, but the wrinkle paint on the valve covers looked pretty good, so I will leave it alone.
water pipes

The water pipes on a four cam car are supposed to nickel plated, but the texture is a matte finish under the plating. A previous owner or shop mistakenly added some “bling” to the engine compartment by polishing these pipes before plating. This would definitely be a deduction at a concours. so the nickel finish will have to be  acid stripped, and I’ll try to recreate the matte finish with a media blaster before sending it out for re-plating.

Every step of this process reveals more work, and a decision if there is enough time to disassemble, finish, and reassemble the part painted, or plated.
fuel hoses

Some obvious errors will have to be corrected like the fuel hoses. First off, they were changed at different times, so the three visible hoses on this car don’t match. Secondly, the ferrules are incorrect and the plating on the banjo fittings was worn. It’s a shame to have to take these fuel hoses apart, toss out perfectly good $$$ yellow hose to make new lines with the correct finishes, but that’s what this Concours stuff is about!
distributor cap bolts

Little details like the bolts that hold the distributor caps down need to be removed so they can be plated in white cadmium, while the lock washer goes in the batch for black oxide!

This car has a set of 15 inch wire wheels installed, but are incorrect for a street driven 275GTB/4. The correct stock wheel for this car was a  10 hole 7X14 Camagnolo. The spare is a 6.5 inch wheel, so it will fit in the trunk. I found a set of decent cores that we will send our for refinishing.
trim rings

The first step, however, was to get the trim rings off without damaging them. Although they look pretty good, they will still need to be sent out for plating so they will be PERFECT!

At the back of the car, I had to remove the rear deck lid so the outside hinges could be removed for chrome plating. The front and rear glass was also removed so the window frames could be re chromed. Someone must have gotten a little carried away with a DA sander when they wet sanded this car and caught the front and rear windshield trim on several spots, cutting through the chrome. This was a very expensive mistake!

I know some people are going to read this post and think “My God, why do all this work on an already nice car?” Then there are just as many people who follow along trying to get their personal cars to this level of perfection. Wherever you fall in the spectrum of Ferrari enthusiasm,  know that there is something in it for all of us, and I enjoy being involved in all of it…expect the crazy deadlines!

Set the Date! Fall Party
October 25th, 2014 1pm-5ish
Westbrook, CT.
Vintage Ferrari gathering in New England. Come join Tomyang.netters for an afternoon of fun, food, and Ferrari talk!
Please contact me to RSVP and for directions to the party!


Reminder: If you have a Ferrari related project, car, or idea you’d like to explore, I’d love to talk to you. I can also help if you’re thinking of buying or selling. This website represents what I love to do, and now it’s how I make a living, so if you’d like to do something together, let me know. It all begins with an e-mail!

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