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Classic Car Parts

By Hanna Nilson


Classic car parts are like pieces to a puzzle. They are hard to find and they require extra care and knowledge to put in place. But, like any puzzle, each piece counts!

For some, classic car restoration and repair isnít just a hobby; itís a profession and a trade of expertise. Anyone willing to take on the task of working with a classic fixer-upper knows that using the proper classic car parts is essential for keeping the carsí realism and value. However, making sure to find and use the right classic car parts for your used classic car can be meticulous work. Donít be discouraged! In the long run, even the finest details can make a great difference for your classic carís faction, appeal and authenticity.

First of all, with internet access, anyone willing can easily conduct research and find what they need for classic car parts. There are also thousands of car magazines such as Hemmings, Classic MotorSports, Car Craft, and Practical Classics etc. which are great resources for any car enthusiast. Furthermore, websites such as Classiccar.com, Old-car-parts.com or Carcraft.com can all provide a wealth of knowledge about classic cars and classic car parts. Such sites are perfect for anyone trying to jumpstart their classic car project. If youíre luck, youíll also be able to work together with a professional to get some quality first hand advice. Itís tricky to try and work with a classic or vintage car based on research alone. First hand experience is the best way to learn, so donít be afraid to get your hands dirty and take your time.

Working with classic car parts can be a mystery for even professional auto mechanics. So to get things rollín, CarCraft.com offers some great tips and tricks about working using classic car parts for classic car restoration:

  • Stainless Trim: Many classic cars from the Ď50s, Ď60s and Ď70s often used a lot of stainless trimming. When all else fails, you always have the option to buy new trimming parts. However, such car parts can be quite expensive. So, to save some extra money; try refurbishing the trim yourself. ďStainless steel is very workable; it can be reshaped and refinished to look like new with the right techniques.Ē

  • Adding Alternative Power Sources: Personally, I think this is a great tip for keeping your classic car running more efficiently. Classic car parts donít always have to be used from right off the shelf. You can really get creative. CarCraft says: ďBack in the '60s and '70s, there wasn't so much in the way of electrical accessories to add to a car, but that's changed. In addition to today's killer sound systems, it's common to add electric fans, high-amperage lighting, aftermarket power windows, and so on, not to mention all the little items, such as extra gauges, upgraded ignitions, and, well, you get it. Instead of having a snarl of wires stuffed into the stock fuse panel (most of them likely hooked to the wrong side of the fuse), why not add a fuse or switched-and-unswitched relay panel to manage the extra load? Smith made one by using stuff from M.A.D. Enterprises, and it prevents him form burning down his Chevelle.Ē

  • Faded Lenses: As another minor but necessary classic car part, faded and old lenses and glass can make your classic car look dirty. Polishing your lenses and windows can make a huge difference for your classic carís appearance. ďParking and tail lenses tend to get dull with age, and now that even '80s cars are a couple of decades old, the early plastic composite headlights are commonly cloudedÖ Here-pros suggest starting with the least-aggressive stuff and moving up as needed-but Eastwood offers a kit for this as well. If you're dealing with heavily clouded plastic and are willing to take chances, we're told fine-grit wet/dry sanding followed by polishing can be very effective.Ē

Donít worry, thereís more where this came from. The former has only been a taste of what great advice is out there. Classic cars and classic car parts can be lots of fun to work with. Classic car parts can also attribute a great increase in your classic car's values. Remember, as long as youíre well informed and are confidant it your intentions for your classic car restoration projects, itís easy to be creative and have fun.

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