Plastic Parts Made for Ferrari and Lamborghini

There were few replacement parts made for Ferrari and other Italian cars because the production numbers were so minimal and any stock was exhausted long ago. Many of the mechanical components for Ferrari’s are common to most models but the body and trim parts are getting hard to find.

I have taken it upon myself to make some parts. Long ago I made Air Conditioning vents, knobs, and little parts for 330GTC/GTS’s and 365′s. Every 330/365 at our shop is missing the alternator junction block cover and knob so I have re-made these parts. Often, the junction block itself is melted from years of engine bay heat and electrical heat so I make the complete units too.

Awhile ago, I made the thumb screws for Lamborghini air cleaner lids with the FIAMM logo.

Now, I am working on making some shift knobs, interior knobs and trying to make the vent window knob for the 330GTC so let me know if you need any of these parts.

If you need a part made, please let me know. Its easier to make a copy from an original part but I can make a part from a mechanical drawing as well. I am learning the techniques to make the molds, hard point holders and account for the shrinkage of the liquid plastic as it sets up.

Here are some of the parts I am making so far.

Plastic Reproduction Ferrari parts

Ferrari replacement parts, Plastic reproduction

Alternator Junction block Ferrari

Ferrari 330GTC Junction block

 

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Fall Drive

It was cool and rainy when we started the drive but as the day progressed, the sky cleared and the roads dried out. A number of Ferrari’s were on the drive as well as 3 generations of Porsche Turbo’s, a 1976, 1994 and 2011 that blasted over the leaf covered roads. A friend took some lovely photos of the cars at speed and here is one of my favorites. The car looks as though its hovering above the road but swimming more than hovering in the air.

Ferrari 275 GTB/4

4 Cam 275GTB.

Zach, Bill and I organize a few of these day long tours and you can learn more about them through the Europa Mothership website.

 

 

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Photos of Tool Kit for 330GT 2+2

Most Ferrari’s of the 60′s had tool kits that were very similar so if you want to see some photos of a 275/330 or late 250, here are some images. This 330 has a remarkably complete kit with some of the little juicy bit like the Dunlop brake bleeder tin and the small tin box with spare tire valve cores and caps. Its crazy to see how well preserved and vivid the colors are. Typically, the tin containers are dented from rolling around in the trunk but these items are nearly as perfect as are the rest of the tools.

Ferrari tool kit valves

Ferrari tool kit bleeder tube

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Here are some more photos of the tool kit. The adjustable wrench isn’t supposed to be there.  “King Dick”.

Ferrari 330GT 2+2 Tool Wrap Kit

Ferrari 330GT2+2 tool wrap

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More Photos of 330GT 2+2 Details

I used an example in the previous post of the subjective nature of how bright a Borrani wheel should be. Borrani was an industrial supply company so I doubt the chrome was highly polished nor was the alloy rim. The rest of the chrome on Ferrari’s was similarly dull in comparison to the super straight and mirror like chrome on restored cars.  In my personal opinion, when you are restoring a very expensive car, the chrome and paint should be brilliant. The body work should be laser straight, the panel fit excellent and interior perfect.

When you look at an original Ferrari, you can see so much bare steel and layers of bodywork sandwiched together without any protective coatings or seam sealer. A recently restored Ferrari should restored where everything should be sealed up to be preserved for much longer than originally intended.

I should say that the body on this car is incredible. The door gaps and shut lines are perfect. The paint looks good from the top but there are many ugly areas down low at the rocker panels. There are many touched up areas on this car that I believe to be done at the factory. However, if Pininfarina spent some more time sealing up the nooks and crannies, fewer of these cars would have rusted into the storm drains of Paris and Milano.

Ferrari Paint Orignal details

Ferrari 330 Pininfarina Nocciola

Notice the light application of paint under the rocker panel trim.

Ferrari Pininfarina 330 2+2

Bottom of the door showing primer on a Pininfarina Ferrari 330

Pretty scary finish details on this door. Mostly primer protects this door.

 

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Very Orignal Ferrari 330GT 2+2

If you ask someone who remembers owning or servicing Ferrari’s back in the 1950′s or 1960′s, they will probably tell you that they weren’t very well finished. My father often says that we make the cars significantly better than they were when new. Judges on the show field have been known to deduct points for a car that is “over-restored” which must be a very hard thing to determine.

Most Ferrari’s from the 50′s and 60′s have Borrani wire wheels. How brightly they are polished seems like a bit of a sliding scale. If you spend $5000 to have your wheels rebuilt, don’t you want them to be highly polished? I have seen many photos of a Ferrari chassis rolling on Borrani wheels while the body is being constructed at a coach builders shop so there is no way the wheels were shiny after that gritty process. I would guess that Borrani used more of an industrial chrome plating on the spokes and hubs and lightly polished the alloy rim but you wouldn’t need sunglasses to look at them!

Another example is the satin black paint on the chassis and engine bay. From what I have seen, it appeared to have been hastily applied by brush right over dirt and weld spatter. I’ve always tried tried to imagine how the rubberized undercoating was applied and picture someone holding up cardboard to prevent over-spray while blowing it on in heavy coats.

Pininfarina used some different practices than Scaglietti but overall, I think there was lots of similarity. Pininfarina used super heavy rubberized undercoating that looked like sagging elephant skin. Scaglietti used a lighter coat of “pebbly” rubberized undercoat.

Anyhow, we had a incredibly orignal 1964 Ferrari 330GT 2+2 in the shop last month. This car has 3000 miles and was perfectly preserved in a dry climate so you can see all the evidence of the original build practices. In the next few blog posts, I will show some of the intricate details on how this car was finished 50 years ago. If you are interested in getting a flash drive of all the details of this car, let me know.

Rear Leaf Spring Ferrari 330GT Chassis

Ferrari 330GT Chassis Rear

Here, you can see the thick “elephant skin” undercoating and other details like black oxide radius arm bolts. You can see lots of gold over-spray on the thick undercoating. This may mean the car was painted after the undercoating or the car was touch up after it was assembled. There are many other areas of touched up paint on the car.

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Front Suspension detail of Ferrari 330GT

Note the think Dijon mustard colored paint on the bottom of the cross member but the thick dripping black paint on the radiator support. The Chassis does not appear to have been painted like many restored cars. It is more a blend of over spray and rubberized undercoating. Note how sloppily the yellow tamper evident paint was applied!

Undercoating details on a Pininfarina Ferrari

Undercoating on a Ferrari 330GT 2+2

Look at the heavy undercoating on the chassis tube.

 

 

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Dino 206GT

Late last summer a customer called me to pick up his newly acquired Dino 206GT. He told me that it was fully restored in the UK but needed to be checked out after the overseas voyage and address a few little squeaks and issues. Then he asked, “How long will it take?” Having never seen the car, I told him that I can’t estimate the timing but will get it scooped up right away.

Like the other projects we have received lately, the car was absolutely magnificent…. but nothing worked. Someone made a custom muffler that vibrated and leaked so badly that we had to replace it. The fuel filler neck hose was installed with such a kink that it split allowing gas to spray all over on right hand turns or when filling it with gas. The brand new clutch cable was rubbing so hard against the steering U-Joint that it wore through it and made the steering feel horrible. After moving the cable away from the steering shaft, the steering still felt horrible because the pinion shaft on the rack was loose and moving up and down.

Ultimately, we did a ton of mechanical repairs and ended up addressing some cosmetic items and made the car drive wonderfully. I drove the car home and needed the defroster fan which I could hear humming away but it wasn’t moving any air. When I got to the shop, I found that the fan housing was cracked which someone tried to seal with an excessive amount of silicone. They inadvertently glued the fan blade to the housing and the motor shaft was spinning inside the fan blade! Insane.

This car is so beautiful that I didn’t want it hanging around the shop for too long, you’ll see what I mean from these photos.

 

Ferrari 206GT Dino

Dino Ferrari 206

1969 Ferrari 206GT Dino

Ferrari Dino 1969

 

Ferrari 206GT Blower Fan

Blower Fan Ferrari Dino 206

Filler Neck Hose Ferrari Dino

Ferrari Dino Filler Neck hose

 

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308 Major Service

Belt Service Ferrari 308

Ferrari Belt Service

The Ferrari “Major Service” is super contentious and I am about to add another wrinkle to it all. In most Ferrari owner handbooks, the “Major Serivice” for Ferrari’s with Cam Belts is due every 10 years or 30,000 miles. Most cars with rubber timing belts use 80-100,000 mile service intervals but the belts Ferrari sourced only last for a 1/4 of those miles.

In order for dealers to sell Authorized Used Ferrari’s, they need to perform a thorough check over and if the belts have not been replaced within the last 5 years, they have to replace them. This has gotten many people to believe that the belts have to be replaced every 5 years. Dealers probably like customers sticking to the 5 year interval because belts services are good profit jobs. You don’t have to diagnose anything and are replacing parts which often don’t even need replacement.

We used to do belt services on 308′s, BB’s and TR’s for a relative set price but lately it seems that things have changed. We did a “Major” on a TR this spring that required so many other repairs. The brakes were leaking, shock bushings were toasted and many other items were just worn out and deteriorated.

We just finished another service on a 308 and many things that we never had to address were in desperate need of repair or rebuild. The lower timing belt drive pulley bearings are bad, the shocks all need an overhaul and the suspension bushings are all dried out and falling apart. The distributor advance mechanisms were worn and even the pin that the ignition points pivot on is broken and loose. The radiator was removed to be checked and a bunch of tubes were plugged so we had to re-core it.

So, what we have discovered is that a good running  and driving rubber timing belt car can have many more needs than just a valve lash and water pump. If you go by a 10-12 year interval, I almost guarantee that an oil leak, water pump leak or some other problem will require an engine out or a need to access part of the engine where it makes sense to replace the belts and do other services. So, don’t get caught up in timing belt interval timing but when it is the right time to service your car, be prepared for a heavier cost.

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Ferrari 328 Upholstery

Last winter a friend found this 1986 Ferrari 328 in a nasty old building that was nearing collapsed. I bought the car sight unseen and was saddened by the condition of the interior. It was delivered new to Saudi Arabia with a “Crema” or Cream White interior with the  striking “Blu Chiaro” paint as seen in the photo.

Years later, it came to the USA where someone installed tan seats and spray dyed the rest of the interior to match. When I bought the car, the leather felt like it had a plastic coating and dirty white leather showed around all of the switches, knobs and pockets. This was totally unacceptable.

We disassembled the entire interior, dash, headliner, and trunk to clean and reupholster everything. It took awhile to locate thread to match the “Crema” and to find the pin striped headliner material but it was worth the wait because the finished product is stunning. I didn’t want to recover the dash but the previous owner screwed a radar detector mount to it and mounted another bracket for one of those old school phones. Now, the entire interior is new and all matches.

1986 Ferrari 328 Interior

Ferrari 328GTS Interior

Blue Chiaro and Crema Ferrari 328

Blue Chiaro Ferrari 328GTS

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Ferrari 250GT Lusso Job

This magnificent Lusso came in for some work a year ago after a very nice restoration. The owner has had the car forever and had it restored to a high standard. He asked us for some help sorting the car after the restoration so I happily accepted. I really like these jobs because all the difficult body and cosmetic work was done and its up to us to get things working as they should.

The rear axle wasn’t assembled properly so we did a full overhaul with our tapered bearing conversion. We changed the ratio from 7-32 to 8-34 to make the car more user friendly on bigger American roads.  We have a few little tricks to make sure these axles are dead quiet when going down the road and this one is silent. You can see in this photo how the front of the pinion teeth were grinding against the bearing. Also note the bearing race was crudely ground to remove it from the pinion.

Ferrari Lusso Pinion Gear

Pinion Gear for Ferrrari Lusso

Ferrari rear axle gear ratio chart

Rear axle gear ratio Ferrari

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Once we got the car on the road after the axle job, we found the engine to be running poorly and had strange oil pressure so we broke it down to find improperly installed main bearings, rough looking cams and some strange ignition “updates” which really never seem to work as well as the original set up.

Type 168 Ferrari 250 Engine

250GT Lusso Engine type 168

When we finally got the car on the road, the brakes pulled hard to the right because caliper jump line was crushed for some strange reason. After replacing a few front end components, we aligned the suspension and started driving the car for weeks to correct all of the little details that rear their ugly head in the worst possible situations! I drove it home on cool nights to make sure the heat and defrost worked. I filled it with gas to make sure it didn’t leak when full. It takes a team to shake down these cars. After I put 200 miles on the car, Nate drives it and finds that the cooling fan isn’t working properly. I was so happy with how this car came out.

Brake Caliper Jump Line Ferrari 250GT Dunlop

Brake System Ferrari 250 GT

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Three Very Cool Cars, Ferrari, Aston Martin, Jaguar

I just wanted to share some photos of a few cars that are kind of the same era. The D-Type is a replica in Aluminum and probably one of the most fun cars to drive at the shop.

D-type and SWB

Ferrari SWB and Jaguar D-Type

Aston Martin and Ferrari 1961

Ferrari SWB and Aston DB4

Ferrari and Jaguar Competition cars

D-Type and SWB

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