1949 model 203 resto
  • Register
  • Help
Results 1 to 6 of 6
  1. #1
    1000+ Posts
    Join Date
    Oct 2004
    Location
    Northern NSW
    Posts
    1,043

    Default 1949 model 203 resto

    Not only have I not finished my 1953 model, but I really haven't started on this 49er, however I have every intention and I'm just hanging out to really attack it.
    But even when I do, it's going to be quite a long process as this one needs the full monty.
    This photo is the absolute beginning, when I first had the beast loaded in Melbourne, bound for the Upper Hunter, NSW.



    And before leaving Melbourne.



    So I'll have to think of a name for the 49er as she's going to be with me for awhile.

    Upon arrival she had pride of place in the good shed where I found what she was needing.
    The passenger floor and sill need cutting and welding as does the floor pan beneath the back seat.
    Either side of the boot it's gone which seems pretty typical. But that's really the sum of the welding probs while the rest needs a really good sanding back with the scotchbrite pads, before undercoating.
    Someone already took the guards off so they were just sitting with a couple of bolts.
    It doesn't have a motor in it, but the gearbox and diff were restored before it was abandoned as a rolling shell. It has no shockers and nor does it have a front spring so I had to borrow a spring and front shockers to roll it onto the trailer.
    I'll be looking for a 403 front end in total, to get this baby back. May fit a standard 203 engine to it or else a 403. The choice will rest upon the condition of the other car I got from Melbourne. It seems pretty rusty, but I haven't got it home yet to really check it out.
    Here's a shot of it at my mate's place where I left it for awhile.

    That one is complete and was a daily driver till 1982, but has been living in dampness ever since being parked.
    Anyway to get the ball rolling I've started to do up a steering wheel for the 49er.
    The one on it is severly disintegrated but there was a spare that at first glance wasn't much better.
    However after checking it out I've started work on it.
    I filled the major cracks round the outside with clear epoxy from FGI. Same stuff I use for laminating guitar backs and sides. When that dries I use heavy sandpaper to get some sanded powder in the cracks and then pour in some super thin super glue. The stuff I use is called Zap and is used by hobbyists mainly for model aeroplanes, but I use it for quite a lot of things in guitar making. The lovely way to fill stuff is to sand it, then pour in the superglue and it goes off with a little puff of smoke. You then build the crack with repeated applications, sanding then dropping in the glue. It has such a fine capilliary action that it goes right to the end of the dry stuff, so you don't tend to get any internal holes. It is slightly dangerous however, as it sticks flesh extremely well and is lethal to eyes.
    Bad to inhale the fumes as well. It's isocyanate after all.
    But if you take care you can fill many things this way. Very good for dark timber, no good for light timber as it tends to be dirtier than the polished light timber colour. But I digress.
    Here are some pics of the wheel being filled. I use masking tape to keep the epoxy sort of in place, but it migrates pretty easily. It's then a pain getting all the masking tape off, but it saves buildup time.









    Advertisement


    This wheel was covered with grey plasic of some kind that has become totally porous and cracked substantially, but fortunately the metal frame has kept it very solid. This porosity fills well with thin superglue and sanding.
    The centre is going to be more of a challenge as it has a thread that the centre Lion emblem screws into. I had to completely break the centre off and will rebuild it in top and bottom sections around where there is a barely discernable casting line.





    If all else fails with the centre, I have just bought a good wheel for a mate which I can use to cast from, but I'm hoping to get this one together with what I have.

  2. #2
    Fellow Frogger!
    Join Date
    Dec 2010
    Location
    Bungendore NSW
    Posts
    490

    Default

    You are either a glutten for punishment or a masoquist. What we used to rebuild steering wheels and buttons and knobs was the stuff that comes in stick form and you break it off and kneed it to shape before it goes off.
    In the middle of the night I can't think what it is called but someone else might remember. It comes all wrapped up and is a stick about 1/2" thick and 6"' to 8" long; it has a core that reacts with the surround when you kneed it. Looks a bit like a stick of dry lube. Once it has gone off you can sand it and sculpt/shape it to produce things like knurled edges on knobs and finger grips on steering wheels. Paint seems to take to it easily and one wheel we did has lasted 15 or so years so far.
    FLASH

  3. #3
    1000+ Posts
    Join Date
    Oct 2004
    Location
    Northern NSW
    Posts
    1,043

    Default

    Probably both Flash, although I know for sure this will last a long time as I've seen repairs on guitars done this way hold their own for decades.
    The stuff you speak of is probably some sort of epoxy twopack. I don't know it, but it does sound good.
    I tried dipping one of the control knobs in my epoxy and it looks like it will stabilize that stuff. I'm told they were made from 'milk plastic' whatever that is, and that they just keep on breaking down internally. This sounds likely if the stuff is unstable, in which case, a new set of knobs will be required. Mal Goodwin has the moulds and will probably get round to casting a few sets some time. I'll let people know if this happens. Meanwhile they may be available at NeoRetro. But for me, I'm not stocking up till I sell a few geetars. Things are kinda slow at the moment.

  4. #4
    1000+ Posts Wildebeest's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2004
    Location
    Perth Western Australia
    Posts
    2,678

    Default Product.

    Luthier & Flash,
    It's a Selleys product.

  5. #5
    1000+ Posts
    Join Date
    Oct 2004
    Location
    Northern NSW
    Posts
    1,043

    Default

    I went round and took a few revealing snaps of the old beast today to set the scene. It's so easy to overlook this stage. I didn't take enough of Toots before ripping into her. Even here I should have taken shots as I first got her, piled with crap inside, managed to apprehend several very juicy redbacks in that cleanup,[surprised I didn't find more actually, will give the interior a mortein treatment before really getting into that dash] and that was when I removed the guards and began hammering out the doorpins. One is mushroomed underneath and will need a touch with the angle grinder, but the others are almost ready to drop out.
    It's really surprising how good it really is. The doors all work fine, windows wind up and down. The door cards are not too bad considering but the ply is rotted along the bottom edges. The rust is in the front passenger floor and slightly through to the rear passenger area, plus in the tray below the back seat as well as on either side of the boot externally, and one small patch above on the right side at the seam of the back guard. Heavy surface rust is fairly general, but this will come off with scotchbrite abrasive pads on the angle grinder.
    Sorry, I think I'm repeating myself.
    So here are some shots.
















  6. #6
    1000+ Posts catshamlet's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2004
    Location
    Hiding in a bush somewhere in ENGLAND
    Posts
    5,312

    Default

    Just a hint.......when you take the doors off, make sure you don't stand them on their hinges.
    I did that and bent the hinges slightly out of line, took me forever to get them to fit properly afterwards.
    Not only was I unhinged, I was bitter and twisted.



    Mike.
    Started out with nothing, still got most of it left.

Thread Information

Users Browsing this Thread

There are currently 1 users browsing this thread. (0 members and 1 guests)

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •