When your back is against the wall and deadlines are looming your suppliers are as important as your technicians. Tony Burgess at Wyatt Polishing in
For the eagle eyed readers amongst us you may have noticed that our usually ‘completed project’ photo shoot was a little incomplete on this occasion. If you look closely you’ll see the front headlight scoops are not fitted at the time of the photo shoot and that was a little disappointing for us but unfortunately when you deal with classic cars you expect a few products to be a little trickier to get hold of.
Better late that never the light scoops arrived and it was the the tough decision of whether to have them painted body colour or silver. The team were split on this but after a bit of research we found that originally they would have all been silver so this is the decision we made…and boy, were we right with that decision.
Here’s the results:
Not all of our projects end with a midnight completion followed by a 4am photo shoot scheduled but our 1966 Jaguar E-Type has not been a normal project.
As always, Jason from Sugar and Spice Photography in Felixstowe has done an absolutely incredible shoot for us.
Normally we like to take our restorations to a beautiful setting, somewhere in the heart of this wonderful county we live in but on this occasion time was against us so our assembly room became our studio…
…and we must say, it makes a pretty lovely setting!
After a very long day and a fantastic team effort from the guys in the workshop our 1966 Jaguar E-Type 2+2 Series 1 is finally complete.
A few slight alterations that need to be made but as it’s now 11pm and we’ve all been in since 6am this morning I think these alterations can wait til the morning.
See the images of her in position in our assembly workshop at the end of the night.
A 4am start tomorrow as Jason from Sugar and Spice Photography arrives to take some wonderful pictures.
It’s a race to the finish line now as we are working late into the final evening before the auction which takes place in Kings Lynn tomorrow.
The number plate has now been fitted to the front and the great news is…it went on the first time of trying. Anyone who has fitted a self adhesive number onto a car before can appreciate that this is a great feeling!
Towards the end of a restoration is the best time to have that final look over the paintwork, really look into the detail of the finish to make sure that everything is exactly how you want it to be.
As I am sure you already know, different lighting shows cars off in a different way. One minute the car looks completely spotless and perfect but then you take it into the daylight and you start to see the imperfections or slight blemishes.
Now is our time to do this and let’s also be frank…we’ve just spent the last week bolting bits back on so however hard we try, sometimes a screwdriver slips or a door isn’t perfectly straight on your first attempt. The point I am getting at is imperfections and slips happen, we try our best to avoid them but it happens.
So today, our 1966 Jaguar E-Type Series 1 returns to the paintshop and with all of the imperfections masked up ready we set off for the final touching up.
The major task of refitting the interior is upon us.
With all of the new components set out in the assembly workshop it was just a matter of piecing together what parts go where before Asa and John got stuck in with the re-trim.
It’s always a huge task on any restoration but one that is so rewarding, you can be working hard for days on the exterior of the car, stand back and not really notice a progress with your efforts but once the interior starts to take shape it’s a whole different story.
It’s all about the finishing touches…so when our original number plates arrived from Sheldrake and Wells in Ipswich, before we committed to fitting them onto the vehicle we offered them up to the bodywork to see how they looked.
The front stickers looks fantastic but the rear just didn’t look right so it was back time to come up with a plan be.
We remembered from our previous experience with the Jensen 541S restoration that oversized number were available on the market so we looked into what size these were produced in.
Luckily the oversized number plates that are produced for the classic vehicles are 520mm x 150mm which was the perfect size for what we required so we decided to get them re-produced.
Original Raised Number Plate Ordered
New Oversized Number Plate Ordered
Now back from Car Glass and Trim, the ceiling cloth and glass are almost complete. We were hoping to have it turned round within the 24 hour window we had but unfortunately not everything can go according to plan.
Only a few alterations that need to be made so all should be complete within the next few days.
Whilst Asa and John were working on the ceiling and glass Gordon was able to cover the boot area with sound deadening pads.
We do like to use sound deadening pads on our restorations where possible as helps to create a nicer sound and feeling when you drive the car. It’s not a huge job to do but one well worth doing.
Today was a deadline that we couldn’t afford to miss!
We had our time slot booked in with Car Glass and Trim in Ipswich to have the new ceiling cloth and glass fitted. With only a matter of days to go until our 1966 Jaguar E-Type Series 1 appears in the classic car auction held on Saturday 18th June at Anglia Car Auctions, it is vital, now more than ever, for us to meet all deadlines set out.
Full restorations, at the best of times, can be challenging and pressured but when you add strict time scales to the mix it makes our jobs that bit harder…but hopefully that bit more rewarding if and when its complete.
We uncovered a slight problem first thing this morning when we noticed a small water leak from behind the dash. Normally this would be something we could work on when she returns from the glass fitting but when the leak could be from behind the dash this is not a risk we were willing to take.
None the less, the fault was found and resolved and we could once again set off up the road to see Kevin and the guys at Car Glass and Trim.
The brand new multi-spoke EType wheels have been fitted to the original specification tyres: Michelin 185 VR 15 XVS (185/80R 15 93V)
Although our schedule is tight our attention to detail will never suffer, it just means we may have some busier and longer days ahead but that’s what makes the team at Bridge Classic Cars so great!
It’s the beginning of our final full week and still lots to do in our Ipswich workshop.
If all goes well we have a daily and hourly schedule to adhere to but it’s not always as simple as we hope.
Today was the start of the chrome re-fit. It’s at this time of the restoration where we start to see the finished product taking shape.
It’s all go in the workshop this week as the pressure is on for Asa and John to finish the 1966 Jaguar E-Type Series 1 restoration, ready for the auction the week after next.
And quite often the case with restoration projects, just as you think things are on track you meet an unwelcomed problem.
Today, we discovered that the back axle was not in full working order and that can only mean one thing, remove the entire back section, diagnose the cause of the problem and find a solution.
Whilst the back axle was off the vehicle we felt it was only right to dismantle the individual components and give it a full refurb, including new springs, shocks as well as freshly painting the casing and exposed areas.
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Resplendent in it’s new Red paint, our Jaguar Series 1, 4.2 E-Type will now be fitted up.
Asa and his team are used to working on tight deadlines but this one is the tightest deadline we have ever had.
Next week the new biscuit trim will arrive so it is important to get the exterior of the car complete as quickly as possible prior to this.
It’s been a busy few days at Bridge Classic Cars. The chrome-work has been sorted and organised ready for the rebuild and we’re expecting our Jaguar back any day now.
Here is a few of the guys getting her ready for top coat earlier today..
When your back is against the wall and deadlines are looming your suppliers are as important as your technicians.
Tony Burgess at Wyatt Polishing in Thetford is one of our suppliers.
Tony’s company are expert metal polishers and a Chroming centre.
A keen classic car enthusiast himself he always goes the extra mile but in this instance he has gone further than that.
Bought as a part restoration and only arriving at our workshops 2 weeks ago Tony took the chrome and returned it to us in 2 weeks.
The quality of Wyatts Polishing work is superb and we want to thank Tony and his team for all his efforts and the service he gives us.
Although the car was 80% restored and freshly painted we were never going to happy with the paint finish. It would of been easy to bolt on the missing parts and sell as is, but Bridge Classic Cars name would be on it. We discussed at some length and the decision was to repaint. Stripped and sent to our paint shop it is now blocked and nearly ready for paint.
It has been a busy week at Bridge Classic Cars but time well spent as the E-Type is now stripped back to basics.
On Saturday morning we were finally able to sit back and really assess the extent of the work that would be required.
As you can see, the chrome work was then organised so the next stage was for Craig to load the truck up ready for it all to be delivered to Tony at Wyatt Polishing in Thetford.
As we are working to tight deadlines with this project we’ve asked Tony to pull out all the stops to get this turned round as quickly as possible and we have every faith in him…
It’s been a week now since we collected our 1966 Jaguar E-Type from VVS and it’s been a very busy week at that.
The disassembly task is well under-way on the Jaguar E-Type and today we are all in the workshop ready to discuss what’s next and assigning everyone with there tasks for the following few weeks.
I have snuck away for a couple of minutes to post some more images whilst Gordon and Asa are in the workshop with Kim (the trimmer) to go through all of the different components that will need to be taken away.
It’s been a pretty busy day in the workshops today. Asa has been working alone and it’s day 1 of the E-Type restoration.
First things first, we needed to remove all of the loose contents from within the vehicle, lay them out in some wort of order to try to establish what we can rescue and what is beyond restoration.
The we get down to removing all of the chrome work and external features from the body ready for phase 2.
Trying to find a trailer key that had fallen out of the trailer at 5:30am is not considered to be the best start to a morning but never the less, it was our start to the morning.
Anyway, after a good look round we found the key and we were on our way…
We had a busy morning scheduled with one delivery followed by three collections so we set off in our new Ford Ranger Pickup. It was the first time we had all been out in the truck and our first experience of how she tows. We all love it…so if you need your classic car transported from anywhere in the UK do let us know as we do now offer a collection and delivery service.
First stop was Itchingfield, Surrey where we delivered Mr Shappard’s Riley RME back to him at his beautiful home.
It was off to Sissinghurst next, approximately 65 miles up the road. We had arranged to visit the guys at Vas Vehicle Solutions (VVS) to take a look at a 1966 Series 1 Jaguar E-Type. It was the first time we had met Mark and the guys there at VVS, they were all really great guys and we were absolutely amazed by the collection they had.
The E-Type was locked away in a compound up the road, we knew this already. It was easier for us to meet elsewhere and then we could follow them to the E-Type but for some reason we found ourselves hanging around at the meeting point for a little bit longer…
Our 1966 Jaguar Series 1 E-Type was tucked away in a barn a couple of miles up the road so after admiring the wonderful supercars on show it was time to go and see her…
Once we had her loaded up, we said our goodbyes to Mark and we were back on the road, this time, to Biddenden.
We weren’t travelling too far this time as Biddenden is only 6 miles up the road from Sissinghurst.
Through all the twisty turn roads we soon reached our third (technically forth) destination to collect a 1999 Jaguar XJR Supercharged that will be coming back to the Bridge Classic Cars workshops in Ipswich.
Off we went for our final collection of the day before we set off again, down the A12 back to Bridge Classic Cars HQ.
Our next stop, Basildon and a 1990 Jaguar XJS convertible.
Throughout the day we kept seeing collections of classic and modern supercars, first thing in the morning we met the guys from Sudbury in the service station on the A12 in their stunning Lamborghini, a collection of Maserati’s and Lamborghini’s in the services further up, then the amazing collection of classic Ferrari’s parked up having a drink in a local village we drove through.
We realised it was Auto Italia at Brookline’s Museum…and here we were driving through the village with an E-Type, an XJR Supercharged followed by an XJS convertible.
Someone didn’t get the memo…