Where to Start When Restoring Vintage Cars

Bringing a vintage car back from the dead can be both an exciting and daunting task. However, the dream of restoring a vintage car often loses steam right after receiving the vintage vehicle from its previous owner. Knowing where to start your restoration can go a long way in helping you finish. To get an idea of some of the first steps you should take, here are a few vehicle restoration insights. 

Determine the Level of Restoration 

Different people like different levels of restoration on vintage cars. Before you begin putting in sweat equity, decide if you want your vehicle to be showroom-ready or if you’re good with a few rough edges here and there. This determination will significantly affect the amount of work and money you’re likely to spend on the project, making it an essential first step. 

Decide How You’ll Use the Car 

Another important choice you’ll need to make early on is whether you plan to use the restored car as a daily driver or if you’ll be good at driving it on the weekends to vintage car shows. For a vehicle you’ll use as a daily driver, it makes sense to update some of its components to respond more effectively to the rigors of modern driving. For example, your vehicle is likely to have drum brakes, but you may want to use an auto front disc brake conversion kit to ensure that you have enough braking power for high-speed driving. Utilizing a conversion kit will help you prepare your vehicle for whatever type of road you will be driving on most often. Take the time to determine what terrains your car will be driving on as you look for conversion kits. 

Figure Out What You Have 

After making the preliminary decisions, it’s finally time to dig into your car. You’ll need to understand your car and what could use some attention. By carefully disassembling your vehicle, you’ll get a close look at each component to find the parts you can salvage. If you’re uncomfortable taking apart the entire car, consider taking apart a single area, such as the interior or engine bay, to perform your analysis. 

Fix the Wiring Harness 

As you repair and add components to your car, you’ll need to make sure they work properly. This means you’ll need a properly functioning wiring harness to power each of these components. For many individuals who restore vintage vehicles, addressing the wiring harness is one of the most complicated and time-consuming parts of the job. However, once you finish this task, the rest of the restoration process should go fairly quickly. 

Set Goals 

If you truly want to arrive at the finish line of your restoration project, it’s important to set goals. While you can’t control every aspect of the process, there are many you can control. If you put time limits on the aspects you can control, you’ll be more likely to keep moving ahead until you turn your vision of a restored vehicle into reality.