Alfa Romeo Zagato 2600

We are very close to finishing up the body work on the Alfa Romeo 2600 Zagato after some hassles on getting information on this rare car. This car was very rusty as though it came out of the Long Island Sound but now the body is all steel again and its going to be sealed and painted to make it last forever. The car was built with layers and layers of steel sandwiched together in certain areas which caused massive puffy rusted sections on the bottom of the doors and rocker panels.

We also had to remedy some accident damage and make a bunch of missing trim and even the front turn signal marker lights. Thankfully I found lenses but couldn’t find the bulb holder assemblies so we had to make these as well as bumpers, a full trunk lid and other parts.

Alfa 2600 SSZ

Zagato Alfa Romeo Restoration

1966 Alfa Romeo 2600 Zagato

Alfa Romeo 2600 Zagato 1966

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Jaguar XKE Engine Overhaul

4.2 Liter XKE

Overhauled Jaguar XKE Engine

Its been years since we have overhauled a Jaguar engine and are pleasantly surprised at how many high quality parts are available for reasonable prices with instant availability. We have been struggling to get parts for Ferrari engines over the years, each piston set has to be custom made which takes 10 weeks, hardware isn’t available, what a pain to keep the motivation. The only thing that takes time on the Jaguar engine is scheduling time with a machine shop to hone the block, perform a valve job, and grind the crankshaft.

The shop that sold us the parts had Mahle Pistons sitting on the shelf and kits to replace all of the hardware, core plugs, sealing washers, lock tabs and timing chain guides and sprockets. We were all blown away at how little clearance needed for these Mahle pistons to fit into the block, only .02″!

Of course there is the labor at our shop, first removing the engine and breaking it down which makes a huge mess, then cleaning all of the parts in our awesome new hot water dunk tank. With Ferrari engines, we have to drill out (destroy) the crankshaft plugs in order to clean the passages but on the Jag, the plugs are re-usable. Plus the passages are huge and easy to clean, have a look at all the metallic sludge built up in there. We also removed the engine block core plugs and got the huge amount of rusty crud out of there.

The engine is almost finished now, probably by the end of next week it will be finished up and ready to test run. I’m excited to hear it run again.

Plugs in Jaguar Crank

Crankshaft full of Sludge

Block for Jaguar

XKE 4.2 Engine block

 

 

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Expertly Prepared XK-120 Jaguar

My father just completed the 2012 Mille Miglia with some friends and all I can muster is a photo of one of my favorite cars on the tour. I think we slept for a total of 6 hours over a course of 3 days and when you combine that with jet lag, I can hardly type this post.

This XK-120 is cool because not only is it well prepared mechanically, there is some artistic license to make it look sharp such as discrete exterior lighting and these huge holes on the hood. I especially like the interior, clean and purposeful while using some gorgeous materials and colors. Well done “Two Boars” racing!

XK-120 Jaguar Mille Miglia

Mille Miglia Prepared Jaguar

Jaguar XK-120 Roadster Mille Miglia

Mille Miglia XK-120 Roadster

XK-120 Jaguar Mille Miglia Prepared

Racing style Interior XK Jaguar

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Ferrari 250 GT Lusso Engine is Finished

Assembling a 250 engine

Ferrari 250 engine Assembly

Ferrari engine, 250 completed

Test run and complete

 

The Lusso engine is finished and running well. Nate did a nice job detailing it and once we take it off the stand we’ll do some more work to make it look super sharp. Mickey refinished the fuel rail that was mixed in with a huge order of 330 GTC and Maserati Ghibli parts and forgotten about for months but its all together now, making steam

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24 Minutes of LeMans Race Car

Ferrari 330 P2 Childrens toy

Childrens car, Ferrari 330 P2

Can anyone find some video clips of these cars racing when new in 1966? It was raced by children in the Vingt Quatre LeMans, 24 minutes of LeMans which was an opening preview for the 24 Hours of LeMans.

 

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Overhauled Porsche 911 Engine

A very good customer showed up last fall with one of my favorite cars, an early Porsche 911 Coupe. While the car did run and propel itself down the road, it needed lots of mechanical attention to remedy oil leaks, weak compression on a few cylinders and a huge list of other things. We decided that in order to enjoy the car in the future, we needed to go through the engine, transmission, brakes, clutch and other less dramatic things such as the heat and vent controls and … windshield wiper blades!

Here is a video of the engine running on the test stand to check for leaks and the adjustment of the ignition system and carburetors. This engine has German made Solex/Zenith carburetors, an Italian produced Magnetti Marelli distributor in combination with a French S.E.V Marchal Alternator.

Early Porsche 911 Engine Test After Overhaul

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308 GT/4 Dino

My plan was to remove the engine and perform a “major service” on the ’79 Ferrari 308 GT/4 but after a leak down test revealed that a few cylinders were weak, I decided to break it down. The combustion chamber leak was from a few valves that weren’t closing so I knew it needed a full valve job. When removing the main bearing caps to inspect the bearings, we found evidence of an improper line hone or some major grit which scratched the journal. It’s irritating because main and rod bearings are super expensive and I was hoping that we could just re-coat them for a fraction of the cost. The machine shop will check the cylinders and hopefully we wont need new pistons!

Nate inspected the transmission and found that 3 of the 5 synchros are worn to the limit so we need to spend another $2000 on the transmission! Yuck, why do I think I can purchase and make money on re-selling these cars?

Engine Ferrari 3.0

Engine Ferrari 3.0

BLock for Ferrari GT/4

308 GT/4 crankshaft

308 GT/4 crankshaft

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Do We Make Parts

People frequently ask me if we have to make lots of parts to keep old cars operating like new. We end up making things here and there but it’s amazing how much is available from very organized parts suppliers and places that make reproduction items. This is a part that we just couldn’t find, it’s a oil pump pick-up to a front wheel drive V-8 Cord 810. The original part was bashed up, the screen was missing and the little elbow pipe was kinked so we made an entire new part. The copper screen came from a local art store, I guess they use it for making sculptures that are covered with clay or paper mache.
This part is identical to the original with silver solder attaching the tubing and screen.

Oil Pump Pickup for Cord 810

Oil Pump Pickup for Cord 810

Oil Pump Pickup Copper Screen

Oil Pump Pickup Copper Screen

Cord V-8 oil pump screen

Cord V-8 oil pump screen

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Nice looking GTC from archive photos

Nice looking GTC in blue

Nice looking GTC in blue

I was organizing my photo program a few days ago and found this photo of a nice looking GTC to share with you.
We had 3 dark blue GTC’s at this time and I think this car was sold to a guy in Switzerland.

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Ferrari 250 Engine Finished and Tested

Casey just finished assembling this engine after all kinds of people blessed it to make sure everything is in the required specification. The reason it came apart is because the valve guides were loose in the heads and allowing oil to flow right into the exhaust and eventually fouling out the spark plug. When we disassembled the engine we found that the cylinders were polished to a very high level of shine and couldn’t imagine that the piston rings would ever seat. In conversations with Hastings Piston Ring Company it was learned that the cylinders needed to be honed to a coarse 280 grit rather than the ultra smooth mirror polish. Since the engine was apart, we decided to have a specialist cut the rear “slinger” off the back of the crankshaft so we could install a conventional lip seal to prevent oil leaks.

The engine is running great and just today we took the car out for a drive in the Arctic Cold air where it performed perfectly.

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