If you have recently purchased a truck and intend to restore it, you may feel unsure about where to begin – especially if you are new to the auto restoration process. As with any other vehicle repair project, it’s important to establish both a budget and a timeline before you begin. Additionally, it is highly recommended that you conduct basic research on what tools you need, finalize the best order for completing repairs, and hire professional assistance for your antique truck restoration.
Tips For Restoring An Antique Truck
According to the Antique Automobile Club of America, a vehicle is considered “antique” if it is at least 45 years old (e.g., a 1953 Chevy Advance Design pickup). It’s important to keep this in mind when restoring an antique truck. Although there are dozens of recommendations you could follow for a truck restoration, here are five especially helpful tips to remember for this type of project.
Know The Value Of What You Have
Before repairing or upgrading any part of your antique truck restoration, it is a good idea to find out the estimated value of your restored vehicle. Regardless of whether you plan to display it at an auto show or sell it, this figure is useful for insurance-related reasons. Additionally, your truck’s value can help you decide what type of paint you want, whether you want aftermarket or original equipment manufacturer (OEM) parts, and other aspects of the restoration. You should also know that antique trucks are so old that modernizing their parts won’t significantly impact their value in a negative way.
Start With A Plan
With regards to antique truck restoration, planning generally includes searching for parts such as horns and tire rims, selecting paint colors, and setting a schedule and a budget. You should also use the planning phase to find a reputable auto body shop that can assist you with more complex tasks (such as replacing the engine, performing rust repair, restoring fabric or leather seats, etc.). It may also be a good idea to join online truck forums for inspiration.
Double Check The Wiring
The wiring is one of the most frequent issues people encounter when restoring a vehicle. Regardless of the type of wiring harness you have chosen to use, you should always double-check the wiring to make sure that your truck starts properly. Correct wiring is also essential to allowing features (such as the air-conditioning system) to adequately function, so be sure to take the extra minutes to verify that this has been properly installed.
See The Condition Of The Motoring
This step consists of two parts. The first involves examining the condition your current motor is in. The second part involves calculating the cost to repair or fully restore it. Once you have an estimate for this amount, perform a cost-benefit analysis to determine what your best course of action is. According to the used-vehicle valuations website NADAguides.com (a J.D. Power company), the cost of rebuilding an engine typically falls between $2,500 and $4,500, depending on the costs of parts and labor. Be sure also to check how much gas was in your truck’s tank when you purchased it.
Decide How To Paint The Body
As with your engine, it is recommended that you evaluate the condition of your truck’s body before deciding on how to paint it. Then, compare this to the cost of purchasing new parts or upgrading the old ones. It is generally a good idea to begin by applying at least one coat of primer before painting your truck. For bare metal parts, primer should have acid in it. If you see any uneven spots on the body, you should sand them down before painting them.
Work With The Antique Truck Restoration Experts
Reach out to the professionals at Robs Customs & Restorations in Manassas, Virginia, for more information on how to restore an antique truck. At Robs, we understand that auto restoration is not simply a hobby but a passion. Therefore, we always strive to help our customers repair and customize their vehicles in ways that reflect their unique lifestyles.
Our truck restorations always begin with a frame alignment, as this is essential to allowing your vehicle to drive openly on the road. We can then perform any rust repair that is needed and restore your truck’s doors and bed (in the case of pickups). Then, we will move on to your truck’s interior and restore your dashboard and seats (fabric or leather).
Call Robs Customs & Restorations today at (703) 552-5001 or contact us online to schedule a consultation and receive a restoration estimate today.