Photos 6: Wednesday the 17th June 1998 Steve started work on the 2600 Sprint body by cutting off the bottom of the left hand door and fabricating new inner frame and outer skin. The project is well under way. He worked for most of the week and by Tuesday 23 rd he had the door finished except for final detailing, the left hand sill back on, and the sheet metal around the door frame and part of the front and rear wheel arches rebuilt.

Tuesday the 30th June 1998 I took all the hydraulic bits into Power Brakes to be rebuilt. That week Steve had metal finished the rebuilt door, started on the front wheel arch and worked his way towards the front of the car.

I can't use the Digital Camera to take photos at present as it is Winter DownUnder and the light level in Bill's Shed is too low. The flash on the Digital Camera is not good enough. The photos on this page will have to lag behind progress as I get them processed and scan them.

Tuesday the 7th July 1998 After all the effort required in metal finishing the left hand door due to the join through the middle of the skin, Steve made a whole skin for the right hand door and by Tuesday night he had the inside frame reconstructed and the skin in place. On Monday night he presented me with the bottom hinge pin that was unusable and so Monday night I turned up a new one out of an old Valiant suspension bolt.

Tuesday the 14th July 1998 The outer sill was put on, the front of the rear wheel arch and the start of the front wheel arch was reconstructed. Steve is eager to make a start on the valence, won't be long now.

Tuesday the 21st July 1998 Steve spent two days finishing off the right hand door and front wheel arch, and then he started on the front Valence.

Photos 7: Tuesday the 28th July 1998. Steve spent the day working on the front valence. I got a phone call from Power Brakes to tell me all the Brake and Clutch hydraulic parts I had taken in for repair were ready to pick up.

All the hydraulic bits a pieces, rebuilt master cylinders, slave, booster and calipers, new rubber hoses and brakes pads cost about A$1,600. The Calipers were machined and built up with chrome, and the master cylinders were sleeved with stainless steel and had new pistons fitted. Here is a list of the parts used, this may help someone else with a similar project.

This was a busy day, also organised to have the car painted and it is booked in for the last week in November, we will have to get on with it now. They are going to use a new water based epoxy paint.

Photos 8: Tuesday the 11th August 1998. During the last two weeks Steve has spent three days working the the valence and the nose. Soon, he will be starting on the bumper bar so he has something to work to as he metal finishes the whole front of the car.

I spent some time sorting out the various bits that I want to have zinc plated, but still have to find time to sand blast some of them. Brackets, the hydraulic reservoirs, and all the nuts, bolts and washers will go to the plating shop.

Tuesday the 18th August 1998. Steve spent Monday continuing on with under the wheel arches and I spent Sunday pulling three of the piston liners out of the engine block. Disaster struck as I was removing the third liner, the removal tool I had made broke and this broke two bits out of the bottom of the liner. After further investigation it looks as though the missing bits won't matter. Now I have to make a new removal tool before I can get the rest of the liners out.

Thursday the 15th October 1998. Not much progress has been made on the project for two months, Steve's truck broke down and had to be replaced and Steve also spent many extra days working to finish Bills Jaguar. The painting deadline will not possible now and so I will have to book it in for February next year. This gives me more time to finish off the underside and I should be able to refit the brakes etc before it is painted.

Another good outcome of this is I had the money available to buy a 1973 GT Junior (1600) I was offered for A$400 and I picked it up today. Will this be a future project or will I cut it up and sell off the spares ?. It had one owner before me who picked it up new in Rome and drove it around Europe and UK for six months, before bringing it home DownUnder. The rust and a failed clutch finally put it off the road in 1988, and it has been stored in a shed full of Vintage cars ever since.

Photos 9: The front of the 2600 is nearing completion with the lead filling going in around the Grill and wheel arches. Under the wheel arches has been finished off also. The headlight surrounds have been bead blasted and are waiting to be repaired.

Thursday the 12th November 1998 Over the past four weeks Steve has only worked one day a week on the 2600 and he has now made a start on the back area. There is still a bit of work to be done on the front but he is in a panel making mood right now. I have taken all the hardware to the electro platers to be zinc plated and should have them back soon, all clean and new looking.

Photos 10: Steve has fabricated a new rear parcel shelf, the old one was rusted away where the rear window leaked. The budget has been blown out a bit by problems with the boot (trunk) lid. The good one I bought to replace the very rusted and bent one, that came with the car, does not fit. Early cars had a strange boot lid with a tubular steel frame and my car had a more conventional lid, with a sheet metal frame. The old lid will not fit on the later cars and so we are in a spot of trouble. The original boot lid is unusable, even with a lot of rework.

Steve has decided it will be easier to modify and use the tubular frame from the old style lid, and make a complete new skin for it, there goes the budget.

Thursday the 26th November 1998 The back of the car is progressing well. The spare wheel well now has a new bottom and the area around the right hand tail light and the boot floor behind it, has been repaired. The bottom lip where the boot lid shuts has been rebuilt, all that has to be done now is to remake the rear valance. We have left the depression where the boot release/lock mechanism fitted out, I can't get a new lock so I will fit an electric boot release like I did on my Spider.

Photos 11: Steve has cut away the metal skin from the boot lid frame and it is ready to fit a new skin. The construction here is quite strange but relatively easy for a craftsman to fix. First a flat strip of sheet metal will be welded onto the frame all round and cut and shaped to fill the boot opening. Then the outer skin will be made on an English Wheel, and welded into place. My task for the next few days is to find a suitable boot rubber that will seal against the strip.

Photos 12: Thursday the 10th December 1998 Steve has worked for several days on the back end and now the new boot lid has been constructed. All that he has to do now is to file the edges to get an even fit all round and finish a few spots and the back edge with a bit of lead. I have arranged the boot catch so I can operate it with a cable and an electric opener inside the boot. I was not able to find a new lock mechanism but I must admit I did not look too hard. The rubber I have used around the inner rim of the boot seals the boot lid perfectly.

Sunday the 20th December 1998 During the past week Steve spent Monday and Tuesday fixing the right rear wheel arch. On Sunday, I spend some time with the car outside, grinding off the welds around the back end, and cleaning off the inside of the roof. I had to give this up before I had quite finished in consideration for an elderly Neighbour who complained about the noise. This points out a problem all back yard restorers have.

Photos 13: Tuesday the 29th December 1998 With the silly season almost over Steve started work on the car again today and almost finished the left rear wheel arch. On close inspection we found one rear corner was down a bit, obviously caused by the rear end collision the car had in its past life. This was easily fixed with some heat and a bit of "pulling".

Photos 14: Thursday the 31st December 1998 In spite of it being new years eve, the day went well, the rear valance was finished in about eight hour's construction time over two days. While Steve worked on the 2600, Bill and I spent most of one day designing and building a compressor bracket for his Mk2 Jag so he can fit air-conditioning.

Photos 15: Saturday the 2nd January 1999 The weather was getting to it's typical Adelaide maximum for Summer of about 36°C today but we worked on in the heat and got quite a bit done, as the photos will show. The temperature for the start of next week is expected to rise to 40°C, with a change possible on Wednesday. Too hot to work at these temperatures.

I had spent New Years Day cleaning out the shed at my place ready to shift the car home to start on the final metal finishing and undercoating. My shed is much smaller but it is lined and insulated and will be cleaner for this work. As there is still some grinding off welds to be done, and we were starting to "wear out our welcome" with two of Bills Neighbors, we thought it expedient to shift this work elsewhere. We can work in my shed with the doors shut, Bills shed is just too hot this time of year, with the doors closed. The ceiling fans just blow even hotter air off the iron roof down onto us.

On Monday the 4th January I called a tow truck to collect the car from Bills shed and transport it to my home, about 3Klm away. With the temperatures reaching 40°C most days during the week, not much got done until Thursday when I started to grind off the welds all over the place, and cut drainage holes in the front and rear valances. In between working on the 2600 I headed down to Bills shed to help him put the motor and front end back in his Mk2 Jaguar.

The temperature the following Saturday and Sunday were still in the high 30's but progress had to be made, so I cleaned the boot (trunk) floor and the Parcel shelf and put a protective coat of Red/Brown oxide over the bare metal, and sprayed the underside of this area. I also cleaned the rust off the roof with an amazing jelly-like rust converter that turned the rust spots into a soft black gunk that just scraped off, leaving the roof clean and rust free. The roof looked quite bad and I was relieved to see the rust had not penetrated the metal far.

Thursday the 28th January Not much has happened to the project for the past three weeks, I went back to work two days a week and Steve has been busy on other projects. I have cleaned the surface rust off the back and front valences, and the front mud guards and under the wheel arches. Repaired areas rust very quickly especially in this hot weather when you drip sweat onto the panels as you work. I then seam sealed the front wheel arches and around the front valence.

Photos 16: My attention then turned to the doors. I removed them from the car and as the left door is finished, I drilled drain holes in this door, cleaned the surface rust off and seam sealed the edges. A coat of Red/Brown now has then ready for a putty coat. Steve still has to fix the gaps and metal finish the skin on the right door.

This week I removed the steering components and am about to take out the front and back ends for cleaning and painting. At night I have been busy on the project on the email, and on the phone, looking for the best prices for the window and door rubbers, and a new front windscreen. I have also been looking into alternative rims and tyres.

Wednesday the 10th March 1999 After about two months of inactivity, Steve was back on the job, metal finishing the the roof and the new boot lid. By Friday lunchtime the roof was in good shape and the boot lid and rear valence looked like original parts.

Photos 17: During the same week I pulled the other three piston liners out with a new tool made by a friend of mine with an excellent home machine shop, and the 2600 Sprint badges arrived from International Auto Parts in the USA. Looks like regular progress will be made for a while if my money holds out.

Thursday the 25th March 1999 Steve has worked on the car several days in the past weeks and the body is almost finished. There may be only three or four days work left to be done. My plan is to get the car covered in grey Epoxy primer/putty, give it the first of three rub downs, stop putty and rub any remaining imperfections, and then give it three or four more coats of black Epoxy primer/putty. Easter usually marks the end of Adelaide perfect weather and so all the bare metal should be protected by early April.

Photos 18: During the final metal finishing we found a few more areas that were damaged and not fixed. A couple of holes in the top radiator support, a crack in the steering box mounting area, a bent right door pillar, and a hole or two in the boot area. Just when you think your are finished, there is always something else.

Sunday the 2nd May 1999 It is official, the body is completed. Today, I finished putting on four more coats of black Epoxy primer/putty all over the body and on the doors, bonnet and boot lid. This process has taken two weekends but the weather has been ideal, warm dry days, with temperatures in the low 20Cs. It should be damper and colder at this time of the year and it looked like I might run out of good weather.

Photos 19: Over the next few weeks I will put a paint able tar on the areas over the wheel arches in the engine compartment, on the underside, inside floor, and inside the boot. Then, if I can get the garage warm enough, I will paint the engine compartment in finished paint over the next few weeks.

The 2600 Project index 2600 Brake parts The spare parts car

Left hand door and front wheel arch Right hand door and front wheel arch The valance and the nose The front nearing completion

First work on the rear The boot lid taking shape The boot lid almost finished Fixing the left rear wheel arch

Fixing the rear valance Back on the front Odds and ends Back into the project

Putting on real paint at last The ReinCARnation of the body is complete

Written by and Copyright ©, Phil. Storr, last updated 4th January 2005