To bring you up to speed (so to speak…. damn I GOTTA stop punning like that!):
My mechanic inspected Lenore and was impressed by the good condition of the engine etc, and only found it necessary to fix a small leak in the tranny pan. Of course, there is still the issue of the front end body work I need done to get my insurance to sign off on the inspection. Currently, the front end looks like this:
The good news is, the car came with the replacement parts and I just need them swapped out in the short term, and will deal with paint and actual body work when I begin to tackle the restoration.
Well, here’s where I start to get really happy, then real depressed…
After 3 quotes from body shops in the Lake Forest/ El Toro area, I found a shop in Santa Ana which services the Fairhaven Cemetery fleet and came in with the right price and amount of time. The owner understood what I needed done, and is quite familiar with the older Caddys. I felt very good about the shop 🙂 So I dropped her off this morning for them to do the swap.
As I was talking with the owner of the shop, I asked if, while he was working on her, he could give me a general estimate on the body work and paint I’d need to bring her back to life. He agreed and then nailed me with the kicker:
To do the rust repair that is evident around the landau top (in 1984 they added the Cobra top to the vehicle) he would need to pull up the top, which would leave a crease in the vinyl for the rest of time. Apparently you can’t pull up vinyl tops and reapply them to look like they were never pulled up before.
Simply said, I would lose the top. Which KILLS me because it is a great condition Cobra top with absolutely no tearing, ripping, or anything more than simple weathering. And they don’t make Cobra tops anymore, or so I am told.
So it appears that the restoration will mean replacing an existing, functional, and good looking padded top in order to fix the rust issues. I am so sad. I was so happy with the top. I got attached to it. WAAAA!
Okay. I’m better now. Or at least until the estimate for the restoration work comes in