Saturday, August 8, 2020

Waxing and Polishing a C3 Corvette: Wax On, Wax Off

I think it is fair to say that waxing a C3 Corvette in a hot Florida garage is true dedication. Either that or I was a bit delirious when that thought crossed my mind.

But waxing and polishing the finish every so often is crucial if you want your paint job to last, and as I have mentioned before, my Corvette's paint job is approximately 20 years old.

And the fact that it looks great after two decades shows how far a little care will go.

Now, to be clear, I had the front bumper and part of one fender, as well as the T-tops, repainted a few years ago. I also had the rear bumper redone about a year ago; and what a fiasco that was.

The rest of the car still has the "original" red the previous owner picked and that paint still looks great, in spite of time and normal use.

The "tools of the trade" I used for this project included my cheapo 6-inch orbital waxer/polisher by Black & Decker. For under $30 it is a heck of a bargain and it works great for my detailing needs. Yes, you could spend a lot more on a fancy polishing machine, but that's optional.

Saturday, August 1, 2020

A Trip Down '76 Stingray Memory Lane

Based on what I was told by the second owner the day I bought my new (to me) 1976 Corvette Stingray, the car was originally purchased by a guy who owned several other Corvettes.

According to the story, the original owner drove the car for a while, then stored it in his garage where it sat neglected for many years, along with the other Vettes, serving duty as a shelf for countless boxes, old carpet remnants, and other junk.

When it was finally "rescued" by the second owner, the original silver metallic paint (code 13) was faded, and in some areas badly scratched thanks to years of boxes being thrown and dragged over the car.

After taking possession of the Vette, the second owner took it to a local shop for much-needed bodywork and a color change. I was told that he picked a shade of red he liked out of a Mercedes Benz color chart and I have to say that he chose well.

Monday, July 27, 2020

Garage Organization: Cabinet for Hardware Storage Cases

Many, many years ago, I purchased a bunch of hardware storage cases that have survived the many moves we've been through over the years.

I had built a custom shelf cabinet for them—again, many, many years ago—but even though it basically was a sound design, it lacked structural strength, so it started to fall apart. But for reasons unknown, I kept some of the pieces since I had used aluminum angle stock to fabricate the sliders.

The photo above was taken in 2018 when I lived in DeBary, and it shows the original cabinet with the storage cases.

Friday, July 17, 2020

How To Replace Front Shock Absorbers on a C3 Corvette

Replacing front shocks absorbers on a C3 Corvette is a bit more challenging than replacing rear shocks. But to be fair, I used the method I'm familiar with and there may be other approaches to achieve this task that could make the effort easier, so I encourage you to investigate those possibilities.

I chose to keep the wheels in place and lifted the front of the car by using my Rhino Ramps. And as easy as that sounds, in my case—and thanks to the Pace Car front air dam—it turned into an involved project requiring a couple of 2x4 pieces and a floor jack just to get the front wheels on the Rhino Ramps.

In hindsight, I should've used the QuickJack lift and then used the floor jack to raise the wheels along with the control arms, to make installation easier.

Of course, I am guessing that such an approach would've been easier and I will not know for sure until the next time I replace the front shocks.

At the end of the day, my approach worked just fine, but it was not as easy as I recalled or had hoped for.

Saturday, July 11, 2020

How To Replace Rear C3 Corvette Shock Absorbers

A few days ago I noticed what appeared to be an abnormal amount of "float" or "bounce" as I drove my '76 Vette around town, which led me to believe the KYB shock absorbers that were installed about five years ago, were ready to give up the ghost.

So early on a Sunday morning, I took my car for a short test-drive down a stretch of Interstate 75.

As the speedometer needle approached 100 MPH, all hell broke loose and my Corvette started shaking so badly I felt it was going to come apart. I immediately let go of the gas pedal but the bouncy ride continued for what seemed like an eternity.

It really scared the bejesus out of me.

So yes, the shock absorbers were toast.