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Talking Tools

Talking Tools Published: 23rd Mar 2016 - 0 Comments - Be the first, contribute now!

Talking Tools
Talking Tools
Talking Tools
Talking Tools
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A bad workman always blames his tools, so goes the old saying. But if you haven’t got right ones in the first place, then how are you ever going to restore that classic properly and safely? While it’s nice to have a garage and tools that would do McLaren proud, you don’t need to spend bundles of cash to be all tooled up.

  • Even a modest lock up provides much needed shelter in which to work and, unless it’s remote from your home, it’s fairly easy to rig up light and power by taking mains power supply from the house by using a suitable circuit board/‘trip’ cut-out system. If in doubt, employ an electrician to carry out the necessary work.
  • If you are building a garage or workshop from scratch, you should talk to the local authorities first, in any case, you need to comply with relevant planning and building control regulations. If you can it’s always best to opt for a larger garage than you think you will need; the available space is never ever wasted!
  • For this reason, a normal 16x8ft council lock up may be too small once you start stripping the car and need to store components. Bear in mind that you need safe as well as comfortable working space to do the job properly.
  • A tool kit a Formula One team would be proud of is great but most of us hasn’t that type of budget! So concentrate on the essential gear first, adding luxuries, like welding, forming machines and so on later. Do you need to buy though as such equipment can be hired out at quite reasonable rates? It boils down to whether this is the start of a long term hobby or you simply just want to restore one vehicle.
  • Go to any car show and you’ll see a massive selection of tools to suit all budgets. However, quality varies and a £5 set of low quality spanners aren’t going to last too long! Good tools are an investment as they last a lifetime.
  • Don’t neglect yourself. Working in shirt sleeves, ratty old jeans and trainers is simply asking for trouble. Good quality overalls are very important while more involved working such as cutting and grinding demands purpose-designed protective goggles and gloves. When welding, you need flameproof overalls, thick gauntlets and at the very least appropriate eye protection.

Knowledge is Power

Finally practice makes perfect – sometimes! Many DIY restorers are self taut mechanics and while there’s nothing wrong in that, why not swallow your pride and seek professional help when it is needed? Seek out a dedicated college course, preferably at evenings, where you can practise, on somebody else’s car first! Apart from mechanical courses there’s usually good metalwork ones featuring metal cutting, forming, welding and so on. Then you can go home and do it for real, safe in the knowledge you know what you are doing saving you time, stress and cash…

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