Alfa Romeo Forums banner

1 - 20 of 281 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,083 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Hi all,

I would like to share with you my journey in the restoration process of the 1900 css from 1954. The journey started 3 years ago...

Due to liars (and thieves) to whom I had entrusted the car, nothing had been done except to scatter all the parts, to lose some of them and to badly do the work on the rest.

Then irritated enough because nothing was done for me and other people like me. So I got back, not the car, but the company.:frown2: I shall then be sure that the work will be very well made, not only for me, but also for the others.
So I laid off everybody, hired new people competent and serious.

The journey can begin... started in June 2018.

The report : a superleggera structure + an aluminium body in parts + a heap of parts (not always from 1900...)

Observation : At that time, the superleggera structure wasn't finished very well. We understand that the production must go on, and details wasn't on first plan. Welds are unrefined, the invisible parts are quickly assembled between them. I think energy was given onto the visible aspects of the car. And it was normal.
Nowadays, people want a perfect car in every aspects, and I agree with that. even if a lot of numerous hours of work remain invisible.

The car : Very tired with many of small modifications made by diverse people during the years make of the car an attractive resurrection project !

After long consideration, we decide (in 2015) ; still valid today :

- to restore the chassis from A to Zwith correct look
- to make a new alloy body from A to Z (the current one is modified, degraded, old, brittle)
- to restore from A to Z drive train and trans
- to restore from A to Z engine, gearbox, rear axle, brakes, steering system
- to make new wiring harness, new brake lines and so on
- to built seats and a lot of little chrome parts (missing or not correct period)
- to source other parts (done today, expect the ashtray, but maybe we'll do it)

and to ask info at the BB members when we don't know :smile2::smile2:

The car and chassis :
 

Attachments

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,083 Posts
Discussion Starter #3
Obseravtion :

The frame was equipped with a huge auxiliary heater....
The car had hanging brake pedal with servo...
All the frame was creased...
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
11,252 Posts
GREAT work Chris! I like the thread title. It's always an adventure to put old Alfa's back as they were when new.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,684 Posts
got back, not just the car but the company!

Then irritated enough because nothing was done for me and other people like me. So I got back, not the car, but the company.:frown2:
Nice, Chris would you care to share more about this? I bet it will be an interesting story...:surprise:

Mark
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,083 Posts
Discussion Starter #7
So, the car was fiited with an inappropriate trans and rear axle coming from Ford, I suppose. The engine was 2000 touring with 4 speed gearbox and the front drive train was coming from... I don't know.

The front face was modified as a tipo 2, but with some rest of tipo 3 behind. Why ? I don't know.

On some era pictures (long time before I came accross the car, I suppose), I saw the engine number of the car.
There are sometimes miracles in life, I source the engine with the 5 speed gearbox !

From years I met very nice people everywhere in the world involved, like us, in the collector cars and especially Alfa Romeo. Thanks to them.

But the years got the best of the splendor of the model. Gauges were switched from berlina, dashboard was pierced as after an invasion of moths and body number was missing...
 

Attachments

·
Registered
Joined
·
11,684 Posts
Subscribed.

Is your company going to restore other cars or will it cease when this car is finished?
Pete
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,083 Posts
Discussion Starter #9
Pete,
there are other cars waiting for customers...:nerd:
therefore, I believe that it will be necessary to finish all the projects before making a decision
priority is the 1900, rest will wait.
Except that last week someone left their car to make a quote (mustang 289 ci 1967) !
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
117 Posts
Hi Chris,
I am doing a similar project (10 years now), 02046 a car that has not been on the road for over 40 years, and I have also met plenty of people willing to ‘help’ me with the project, some of them were professionals and others just have cost me a lot of time and a lot of money. So I think I can relate to what you have been through.
My car has just been painted last week, technical parts are ready for re-assembling the car!!!
Should you need any help in searching for parts, I have a few spare parts, some 1900, some I still don’t know which cars it belongs to..and next week I will be in Padova searching for more,or should you need detailed pictures, no problem, always happy to help in getting another Alfa back on the road.
Good luck with the project, Mike
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,083 Posts
Discussion Starter #11
thank you Mike for your proposal.

So all the welds have been checked, repeated and completed if necessary.
All the "closed" areas were opened, changed or cleaned -it depends-, prepared against rust, and closed again.

Complete floors and trunk rebuilt and some of the longerons
A pillars and a part of B pillars rebuilt
Lower inner rear wheel arches
Some tubes of the structure
Parts of front inner wheel arches
Front crossbar
Big part behind dashboard
Big part of firewall
And so on.....

During the work...
 

Attachments

·
Registered
Joined
·
722 Posts
Subscribed, love the idea of superleggera wish I could shed some weight. Regards John
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,083 Posts
Discussion Starter #13
At the begining, I really don't know a lot about the underside of the car. Of course, I saw pictures and cars on the net and in exhibitions.

But the cars were always "dressed and never naked" 0:) So when we removed the bodywork, we discovered some peculiarities.

For example, a small "anomaly" on the rear wheel arch intrigued us. We figure out it was original, because the welds were the same as the rest of the car. Buy the way, look at the original nice welds, made with care...

So, without knowing, we redid this part as originally. And all the better, because several months later we understand that it's a "support" for the battery box. So we made the battery box !
 

Attachments

·
Registered
Joined
·
216 Posts
Congratulations, really a great job !!
I thought I was the only one here to restore cars in desperate conditions !!
This year for the first time I will not be in Padova ... I would have liked to meet you and congratulate you personally.
About Padova: there is a dear friend of mine who has and sells many spare parts for your car.
If you want I can send you a pm for info.
Ciao
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
858 Posts
Well first of all, I sympathize. I've gone through a similarly painful experience due to the complete breach of verbal contract and trust of three individuals, throwing a vast sum of money and time away in the process.

Secondly, and more importantly, I commend you on your commitment to the car, its historical significance, and to honoring the skill and craftsmanship of those who built it.

After over 7 years my own Series II Super Sprint (Touring bodied) is in the home stretch of having its body completed (without paint) and should be back to me by year's end. I will then take a breather and begin prioritizing a complete assembly to determine what I am missing, and make sure everything fits. I will then disassemble the car, get it painted, and reassemble.


IMG_3052 by tjveloce, on Flickr

9AB520DE-C295-4EC8-BFB9-AB11BE4B6698 by tjveloce, on Flickr

I'm looking forward to sharing the story once the car is back with me.

Ciao!
-tj in the Cruz Mtns
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,083 Posts
Discussion Starter #16
GIGI PM sent

TJ, I think Touring cars are really the most beautiful for my eyes (from pre war period untill the 60). Yes, the work on the Touring is a great and very expensive (time, energy, money) adventure !
You made the wood master or it was already done before ?

The horrible mounting of the auxiliary heating, before and after
 

Attachments

·
Registered
Joined
·
279 Posts
Exciting reading! It's beautiful to see men with the means, time, and devotion to restore these fantastic Alfas.

My capability is more like fixing the simple top latch on my garden-variety Series 3 Spider, but it's inspiring to see threads like this.

David O'D
Laguna CA
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
858 Posts
GIGI PM sent

TJ, I think Touring cars are really the most beautiful for my eyes (from pre war period untill the 60). Yes, the work on the Touring is a great and very expensive (time, energy, money) adventure !
You made the wood master or it was already done before ?

The horrible mounting of the auxiliary heating, before and after
The wooden “buck” as we call it, was started by the second body guy I hired, but only about 25% complete. It was finished by the shop which now has 10321 using the undamanged areas from the front end of another Series II Super Sprint.

-tj in the Cruz Mtns
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
11,684 Posts
Gotta love (er, laugh at) Italian welding ... shockingly bad. So funny or weird that a country that produces the most beautiful castings simply cannot weld. Is it because they were so good at casting?, like the Chinese were late in to glass because their pottery was so good and they drank tea not wine, etc.

I assume this is an issue that has been solved and a modern Italian weld is now a thing of beauty, but back then it was just a blob of metal close to where it needed to be. The question for us restorers is: do we replicate this horrid welding ineptness or not?
Pete
 
1 - 20 of 281 Posts
Top