This 1974 MGB was shipped to us from Canada for a full restoration. It looked pretty solid when it came in … But as you can expect with any British car approaching 40 years old, it ended up requiring extensive body work and the replacement of many rusted panels and parts, as you will see in the photos below. But we'll show you the pretty pictures first!
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The photos above show the MGB in its just-about-finished stage, with new Stayfast fabric top and shiny new red paint. Bumper and trim pieces that were reused were cleaned up and polished before reinstallation.
1955 Austin-Healey 100
This is the car with its original paint, as it came in the shop. Here you can see that we've begun the process of stripping it down and finding out what rust-ridden problems lurked beneath the shiny parts. Looks pretty solid though, doesn't it?
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Did we mention that there were more than a few rust issues on this car? As is so often the case, lots of bad news lurking under the carpet and trim. Even though a car seems solid on the outside, it's common to find extensive rust once we start digging into a project ... and why so many restorations exceed owner expectations in terms of time and resources needed to do the job right.
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Above: Under dash wiring being checked and replaced as needed before the the new interior is installed. At left, freshly painted fenders, hood, trunk and doors are kept safely away from the shop until installation time.
1955 Austin-Healey 100
Here is the car with its fresh paint and most of the engine components installed, but awaiting the interior work and windshield.
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We refurbished and reused as many parts as we could. But no one wants to see dirty and rusty old parts in the engine bay in a newly painted car, so many new parts were also part of the picture. An engine rebuild was part of the plan, and this MGB also ended up with a rebuilt distributor, rebuilt clutch and brake systems, new shocks and a new fuel tank.
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New seat cushions and seat covers help make a newly restored car comfortable to drive, and there's nothing like new interior panels and a fresh carpet set to make an old car look like new. Dash and console pieces are the originals, and got reinstalled after a thorough cleaning and freshening up.
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The owner opted for a luxurious red carpet set for the boot, complete with carpeted spare tire cover with the familiar octagon logo. Not original, but a nice-looking aftermarket option that helps quiet the ride, too.