Essential Tools

Sue and I restored our old house, so we already had a pretty good complement of tools. It's a short list of tools that we bought just for working on the car. Some are pictured below, but also things like a ring compressor, torque wrench, and engine stand were picked up along the way. I was lucky to be able to borrow an A-frame engine hoist from a friend for the duration of the project.

Very important to mention that I never did without when it came to safety gear. I wore safety glasses anytime I was using a power tool, or working under the car. I wore protective gloves most of the time, especially when tackling things like scraping the undercoating off of the car. I learned early on that a gash on the hand pretty much stops work for the day. I used a box of dust masks and a box of nitrile gloves. And I wore hearing protection while using the grinder or even the shop vac.


A garage/workshop, with a wood stove and electricity. I see on the BBS's guys in England and elsewhere that work in structures the size of a shipping crate. I don't know how they do it. I guess we're lucky to have the space we do here in America. My shop is 20'x20'.


Radio/CD player, with a remote. This was actually a gift from my company for reaching the 20-year mark.


An understanding and supportive wife. Absolutely key. You've heard of "golf widows"? The number of hours I've spent on this project in the garage and on the computer is in the thousands.


MIG welder, with CO2/Argon mix gas supply.


The bleeder type paint sprayer from my father-in-law. If not for this, I'd have a painstakingly restored economy car with an earth-tone Rustoleum primer finish. Instead I have a collector car that draws a crowd in the parking lot.


Two essential tools shown here: the angle grinder and attachments, and the rug. This rug and several others made it a lot more comfortable to work on a project that is almost all within 18" of the floor.


Yup.


Extended family. I'm pretty much a hermit, don't socialize much. But I looked forward to showing people what I had accomplished since their last visit. I'm the one with the puzzled scowl.


Computer. Used it for finding parts, checking BBS's and asking questions. Kept track of my progress in a Word document, and my purchases on an Excel spread sheet. Don't ever total up your purchases.


Digital camera. Indispensable, especially when you wonder how things looked before you took them apart.


Catalogs. They're in many ways as valuable as a how-to book. Probably a good idea to get them before you buy your car.


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