This is the TJ’s family Bugeye. We have the car here from Reno for a complete restoration. This is a one-family car that was originally purchased in England new by TJ’s Grandfather and used to tour Europe with TJ’s dad and siblings in the “back seat,” after grandpa had the rear deck cut-out to make more room for the kids.
Note also the special side markers added on the corners of the fenders. These were added when the car was last restored. Grandson TJ has asked that we leave the park lights in place and also leave the cut out in the rear deck, as it these features are a big part of the family memories.
The car looks reasonably solid in the photos above and this is why I have posted a large photo album below. Take a look at what was revealed once the car was media blasted. Much of the car and old repairs were blasted away!
This is one of the big challenges with restoration. To do it right, you have to remove everything before you can get started. And generally, that opens a big can of worms. I’m not sure if anyone in TJ’s family realized how many repairs were done last time the car was painted (which might have been in the 60s).
Now, we will weld shut all these holes and start the process over again. Many of the old repairs were loaded with filler, which was blasted away. We’ll use more sheet metal for a lasting job that will look better next time the car is blasted (in 100 years?)!
Media and sand blasting a tub provides the best foundation for new sealants and paint. The tub is blasted naked, and then immediately coated with epoxy primer (as you see here in gray), to seal the metal before the fabrication begins. Many people take shortcuts and grind away the old paint or use chemical strippers. But unless you thoroughly remove all the old paint, contaminants can ruin your new paint job.
Our next step will be cutting, grinding, and then fabricating patch panels to fill the old repairs properly. Old rocker panel repairs as shown above, for example, will be cut-out completely, and new panels will be welded in place instead.
We’ll post progress photos in the coming weeks!