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1985 Carrera Build Thread!

So, after a long time reading on the forums I finally have something to post! I thought I would start a build thread of my 1985 Carrera that I have plans to do a light restoration on. It will be repainted, have a lot of the interior replaced, redone wiring, some cosmetic changes on the exterior, and some suspension refreshing. I started dismantling it back in November but haven't gotten around to starting the thread until now.

So here it is, a 1985 Carrera 3.2 Coupe I purchased last summer in "Prussian Blue." The pictures make it hard to tell but the paint was in pretty rough condition, bubbling in lots of places and completely lifted in others.



You can still see some of Hurricane Irma's aftermath in the back, the flipped sailboat.



I don't have a very good picture of the interior unfortunately but it was one of the main things that needed refurbishing. The car had some pretty bad water leaks which left behind a pretty bad smell. This was only made worse by me daily driving it rain or shine down here all summer and fall. It also led to some unfortunate surprises down the road. The car had a supposed accident which the seller had no information on. The car also was non-running when i purchased it. When it arrived I realized the passengers back fender was painted with what seems like a brush. The non-starting condition ended up being a cut ignition wire deep in the bird's nest being used as a cutoff for a non functioning alarm. Still it had non-working headlights, brake lights, indicators, fog lights, cruise control, radio, ac, heater, power mirrors, or defroster. I was able to fix the lights the following morning as it was nothing too serious. The rest, could wait. This soon became my daily driver as I just enjoyed driving it so much, even without a radio or ac in upper 90 degree weather.

This forum has helped me out more than you would believe in my time of ownership of this car and even before while I was doing my research. I thought a build thread would be a great way to introduce myself to the community and contribute to this already great forum. I've been a car fanatic since I was a kid and was raised on American V8's, particularly old Chevys and Mopars. I plan on doing all the work on this car myself and documenting as much as I can. Any input you guys have along the way will be more than appreciated and any questions you have I'd be glad to answer! Thanks!

Last edited by aaguiar27; 03-27-2018 at 11:06 PM..
Old 03-27-2018, 09:34 PM
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After receiving the car I changed the oil, brakes, and performed a valve lash adjustment to get the car on the road. I removed the non-functioning cruise control, heater blower, and ac while I was at it. Went ahead and removed the non-working aftermarket radio head unit as well.

Shortly after found this little guy by my car in the parking lot in 90 degree weather.



I couldn't help but keep him after taking him to the Vet to get checked up. His name is Oslo.



Next order of business was the headlights. Although I got the original sealed beams to work, they barely illuminated the road. I looked for affordable projector headlights and all seemed very over priced. I came across this kit from Clay at Closed Course Motorsport. It required a little DIY but it works and looks great. Used an LED H1 bulb in a morimoto mini H1 projector and used his bracket and custom chrome shroud to install in a clear beetle headlight.





Hurricane Irma started making its way to us in early September. The day before it was supposed to make landfall in Florida I got into an accident. In the midst of the panic and last minute preparations traffic was horrible. An older gentleman ran a stop sign in front of me and I couldn't stop fast enough before I hit him. The new headlight shattered, the bumper and underlying bumper shock was twisted, and the fender wrinkled back but both of us were completely unharmed. German steel is a lot tougher than I thought! Such little damage on my car while his minivan was left with a 911 sized dent on his sliding door. The gentleman was very apologetic and the police/insurance sided with me. I was actually on the way to store the car in my fathers warehouse securely for the storm.


Old 03-27-2018, 10:52 PM
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Nice work so far. Welcome.
Old 03-29-2018, 12:44 PM
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That cat is a keeper. He matches the interior carpet perfectly. No worries about cat hair, like when my white four legged fluff ball leaves hair in my black carpet.

Sounds like you have a great starting point for a nice project.

Luv those headlights.
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Old 03-29-2018, 01:26 PM
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Is it my imagination or is the tail tilted down and to the right? Lighting maybe?
... I’m such an arse.. beautiful car and welcome!
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Old 03-29-2018, 01:57 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by da Vinci Dan View Post
Is it my imagination or is the tail tilted down and to the right? Lighting maybe?
... Iím such an arse.. beautiful car and welcome!
Wow, you're not the only one to get that impression, DaVinch... I stared at it for some time thinking "Hmmm, what's wrong here?" then realized that it looks kinda, er, longitudinally twisted. It's probably a perspective issue from the camera lens affected by the surroundings, etc, but it sure caught my eye too.

Pretty car though
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Old 03-29-2018, 07:23 PM
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tdw28210: Thank you!

Trackrash: Cat is definitely a keeper! Been with me about 8 months now and grown up quite a bit.

da Vinci Dan and donagain1: Thank you! The spoiler does look pretty crooked in that picture, not sure if its the lighting or it really like that the whole time. Too late to check now since I already took it off. I wouldn't doubt it though. The wing was held on loosely with about 4 different length and types of wood screws to a non-wing decklid.

Quick question. How do I quote someone else's post to reply the way donagain1 just did with da Vinci Dan's post?
Old 03-29-2018, 09:42 PM
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Beautiful cat!
Old 03-29-2018, 10:04 PM
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So, post-Irma I didn't have power for a few days but no serious damage occurred in my neighborhood. I straightened out the left fender with a hammer and dolly to the best of my ability and ordered a new headlight from Closed Course Motorsport. I also ordered a Prototipo wheel as I found someone willing to buy the original wheel as well as a WEVO shifter. The shifter, along with the PSJ made a world of a difference in shifting the 915, much crisper and more precise.



I had the intention to repaint the car and start a restoration at some point. The fender with no paint was starting rust after a few weeks and was still somewhat crooked and the bumper was still sagging. Finally, around November the power window gave out and I had to disassemble the door as well to figure out what was going on. It was raining pretty frequently and I couldn't drive with the window down. I decided to start to stripping the car down and start ordering parts little by little. Ordered a used decklid off eBay without the wing mounting as well as a RUF style front bumper and iroc rear bumper from getty design.



Test fitting the RUF front bumper as well as experimenting with black headlight housings. The Getty designs parts fit incredibly well. The rear might need a little surgery though but nothing too bad.




Two weeks ago finished taking the car apart. Pulled the engine/trans, full interior, full electrical harness etc. Only left the suspension in place to be able to roll it around.


Old 03-29-2018, 10:43 PM
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All caught up to today. Spent the day working on the bumpers. Cut out the whole for the center grill as well as filled the side marker hole with fiberglass. Really like the way the IROC front bumpers only have the indicator in place and wanted to replicate that look. Also made cutouts for the M&K center exit exhaust on the rear bumper. Feathered the bumper with 220 grit followed by 2 coats of featherfill. The two coats gave enough thickness to block out the bumper laser straight to 400 grit. Just need to finish the rear bumper and chin spoiler. Then going to use epoxy reduced 25% as a sealer and its ready for paint. Next week the car will get sandblasted to bare metal and the body work begins after a couple coats of SPI epoxy. Curious to see what I find under all the filler I keep finding on the car. Still on the wall about painting it myself. I'd like to and the savings would be a great deal, but I don't want to mess it up. Ive only done minor body work before and painted spoilers and other small parts before. I'll decide once I finish laying down the epoxy. So far I'm very pleased with how the bumper came out.


Old 03-29-2018, 11:17 PM
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Very nice work. If worried about painting skills, have the pros do it. You can do all of the prep.

Need more Oslo pics.
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Old 03-30-2018, 08:12 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by aaguiar27 View Post
tdw28210: Thank you!

Quick question. How do I quote someone else's post to reply the way donagain1 just did with da Vinci Dan's post?
When you see a post that you want to reference, look at the bottom right side of the box the post is in and you'll see a little gray button with the word "Quote". Click it and their post will appear in the reply text box. You can highlight and delete unneeded portions, and change colors, etc with the toolbar as desired.
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Old 03-30-2018, 11:02 AM
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Very nice work. If worried about painting skills, have the pros do it. You can do all of the prep.

Need more Oslo pics.
I have always heard 85% of a great paint job is the prep work. If this is true, and one is worried about their painting skills, shouldn't the prep, priming, and panting be left to the pro's? I ask for the OP and myself, as I am pondering doing the body prep but do not have confidence in my ability to put the paint on.
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Old 03-30-2018, 11:41 AM
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Iíve heard the same about prep work being key. As far as blocking and stuff Iíve been able to get straight and smooth panels and the few things I have painted are still holding up. But Iím not confident in my spray technique and gun setup. Especially something as big as a car. I donít know how much cutting and buffing the clear after would fix I have too much orange peel, drips, or pinholes. Not sure how painting under a tent would work out either.
Old 03-30-2018, 12:36 PM
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1985 Carrera Build Thread!

Quote:
Originally Posted by donagain1 View Post
When you see a post that you want to reference, look at the bottom right side of the box the post is in and you'll see a little gray button with the word "Quote". Click it and their post will appear in the reply text box. You can highlight and delete unneeded portions, and change colors, etc with the toolbar as desired.


Thanks!
Old 03-30-2018, 12:49 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Duc Hunter View Post
I have always heard 85% of a great paint job is the prep work. If this is true, and one is worried about their painting skills, shouldn't the prep, priming, and panting be left to the pro's? I ask for the OP and myself, as I am pondering doing the body prep but do not have confidence in my ability to put the paint on.


Also, prep work is the most labor intensive part. This means itís the most expensive part of a paint job. I think if you do a good enough job but leave a few small imperfections it would be easier for the shop to just touch up those areas with a little sanding and glaze or whatever than have to block the whole car from the metal out. It should be much cheaper that way and you can still end up with a good finish at the end I feel. I find a lot of shops donít like doing this kind of work and would only tackle it for a much higher fee just because itís an ďolder car..Ē
Old 03-30-2018, 04:44 PM
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Yeah, but he can strip the car down, remove or key the paint and then hand off to the pros for the real difficult time consuming stuff.
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Old 03-30-2018, 06:24 PM
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From what you said, I assume that it was repainted at some point. And that paint is failing. That causes an issue, since should you trust painting over that and have it last?

Not saying you need to go bare metal, but you have some sanding to do.

One more thing to keep in mind is the quality of ALL the paint and other products you use in the re-painting process. I'm not saying you need to use Glasurit, but don't get talked into using this or that paint or primer, because it is "what the pros use" or it is "just as good as" but cheaper.

Once you find someone who is willing to work with you on your repaint you might want them to do the final sanding and prep. It is amazing how some scratches you didn't notice will show up after the final spray.

What is the original color? Are you staying with it or changing?
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Old 03-30-2018, 07:24 PM
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RSBob and Trackrash: The plan is to do the bulk of the body work myself and like you said, have a pro do the final prep and paint. I don't trust I can handle the paint gun well enough to get good results, not to mention the final sanding like you mentioned. In materials I'm using products I've used before with good results and have seen other cars used them with lasting results. Original color is Prussian Blue but I'm currently between Stone Grey and Fashion Grey.

This past Saturday I had the entire car sandblasted down to the metal inside and out. The body underneath the body work turned out to be in great condition. Though the car had between 2 and 3 layers of body work and paint in different spots that made it a bit tough for the guys to get down to the metal.









By Saturday night I finished covering the car in grey SPI Epoxy primer before any flash rust started on the surface. The epoxy sprays great and has great coverage. I gave it a second coat the following morning.






Nice seeing the shell in a new color and cleaned up. Next I plan to spray some ceramic insulation inside and start body work on the outside with a little feather fill.
Old 04-10-2018, 09:34 PM
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Good step foreward!
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Old 04-11-2018, 02:20 AM
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