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Webby's Story


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Posted (edited)

I thought that as it's under going a restoration I would share Webby's story. 

I've had Webby for about 20 years, prior to that I had a 1988 944 in Guards Red with a pinstripe interior. The 944 is very underrated, OK they aren't the fastest, but they handle fantastically and with the big hatch and fold down seats are surprisingly practical as a everyday car, but I decided to upgrade to a 'proper' Porsche with the engine in the back. Now I was very new to the 911 world, I'd spoken to the guys at JAZ, when they were in the shadow of the old Wembley Stadium and they had told me to steer clear of 964's especially the 4wd versions and I'd be better off looking at a 3.2, so when I found Webby at Portiacraft in North West London I was smitten. The black leather sports seats, deep glossy blue Metallic paint and the classic late 80's "whale" tail, it looked perfect. I basically bought it on the spot without a test drive or inspection. You live and learn. Not having driven a 911 before I wasn't quite used to 'uniqueness' of the 911 controls and trying to pull into the busy traffic on the A1 was quite a challenge until a kindly HGV driver took pity and blocked the lane until I stalled and kangarooed my way into motion. 
I used Webby all that summer enjoying all the open top motoring that a Targa gives and discovered a few problems, first it leaked quite badly from the tops of the quarter lights, and secondly when following the instructions on how to check the oil with the engine running the car would die when removing the filler cap. Thinking it must just be a quirk, I ignored it until the first service at JZM and I mentioned it to them, they checked the cylinder head compression and the figures were not good, so out came the credit card for a top end rebuild.
During this time I realised that having a 15yo sports car as your only car is not practical, so I then, bit the bullet and decided that Webby would be a weekend car and I'd get a boring car for the daily drive. A waterproof cover was purchased to prevent the leaking quarterlights soaking the car (at this time I had some poor and wrong advice from somebody who had been recommend to me as an 911 bodywork expert, hence why the leaks weren't fixed).
Now with the car running like new, all was good, until driving back from visiting folks in the Midlands. In boring bumper-to-bumper traffic on the M40, on a drizzly afternoon, after a full Sunday roast (no alcohol) my mind had one of those micro-snoozes...., the next thing I realise is that I'm far too close to a Volvo estate just as he's putting on the brakes. THUD!!! Nearside wing destroyed, windows surround bent and even a chip in the B pillar from the door hitting it (important later). After much back and forth with the insurance company (their assessor an OPC bodyshop decided it was beyond economic repair, this was when the bottom had dropped out the market and 3.2s were as cheap as chips), I had the work done by an independent body shop and I thought all was well again.
I moved house, Webby got a nice garage to live in and I was putting a few thousand miles on each year, we did a track day, etc and all was good. Then in 2008 I noticed a some bubbling on the nearside B pillar, where it had had the repair, it even got picked up in the MOT, by 2009 it had got much bigger. Being very busy at work and advised that it would not pass another MOT, I left Webby in the garage promising to get around to getting that fixed some time ....




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Edited by TargaWayne
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Posted (edited)

Roll around to 2017, I'd been starting Webby regularly to stop the engine seizing, but I decided to get it MOT'd at my local (non-Porsche) garage to see everything everything that was wrong. Even though the B-pillar rot had grown the MOT said it was a advisory but not failure (old rules). The other MOT items were addressed, the car was serviced, taxed and back on the road. More sunshine motoring including a trip to Scotland, I can recommend the A708 from Moffat, lovely sweeping corners with great scenery (Obviously never above 68MPH all the way Officer), then onto the B709 to Traquair. Garaged for the winter and out again in Spring only for this time to fail the MOT with a rollbar bracket broken on the lower swingarm. At the time the company I worked for was having problems so with the threat of unemployment looming the car was garaged again.

So finally in 2021, the madness of 2020 behind us, the job front looking OK, saving increased, I bit the bullet to get Webby back on the road and looking sharp. Firstly as a birthday present to myself, I purchased a decent set of tools. and set about striping the interior. Footwell mats are toast and will be replaced but other carpets are in good shape and will be cleaned thoroughly. Seats have a nice patina but are worn in places and the beading is very tatty, these are being colour restored and treated by Bespoke Leathering who are also replacing the beading in new blue leather matching the paint work. I know red is factory spec but just looks odd in the car. Can't wait to these come back.


      

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Edited by TargaWayne
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...Next it was the lower wishbone. Since the suspension is nearly 35 years old no point in messing about, new OSF lower arm, new bushing all round, new Bilstein shock inserts, new ball joints, new ARB, turbo tie Rods, etc. Thanks to Matt @Type911 for making sure I had all the correct bits. Struts and NS lower arm blasted and powder coated. Brakes calipers are being refurbed and new discs. 20210417_101921.thumb.jpg.a99f006da74cbac8c92fa27a5d1ed42a.jpg
Of course nothing ever goes 100% right and the front bolt that holds the NS suspension mounting cover on pulled out, which probably means everything will have to come off again to replace the panel, so nothing is torqued down or set up correctly and it'll all have to be aligned after the body work is done. but at least it was back on it's wheels so that ....


    

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Posted (edited)

Lovely story of your ownership, keep the updates going and hopefully we'll see you on the road soon

Edited by Beaky
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Posted (edited)

Now the big bit, whilst I know one end of a spanner from the other, I can't paint or weld, and you can see the size of my garage in the previous post. So the tinwork is being done by the pro's. I'm using a company called AutoBody Technic. I've been recommended this shop by a few people and if you watch the 911virgin.com videos it's featured in Henry's 964RS restoration videos. Bob came around and gave the car a good going over, and whilst you can really see everything until the wings are off, he doesn't think it is as bad as some, a lot of their work is now Porsches and he knows his stuff.  Apart from the obvious B-Pillar rot, it's the normal stuff, slam panels, sills, KB's, It also need a new front wing as there it rot by the OSF jacking point, which all needs to be cut out and replaced, and at the tip of the wing, on the rubber smile, it looks like something was dropped on it cracked the paint meaning water got underneath. As metallic paint is never easy to get a consistent match and to cover up all the little scratches and scuffs, the whole car will then get a glass out respray.

Now I'm sure a lot of people are thinking of all the mods I could make, but I want to keep it stock. It's not going to be a garage queen, it's Porsche, it's designed to be driven. ( I get annoyed about stories of 2.7RS with 100 miles on the clock). But I will be "decorating the Garage whilst Webby is away. Watch this space.

Webby on the Ramp at Autobody Technic. 

 

  

 
        

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Ps if your wondering why Webby. (Original Plate)

 

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Edited by TargaWayne
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3 hours ago, fat fuchs said:

Nowt wrong with keeping your car stock IMO. Good to see you're progressing the project and hope it goes well for you.

Best

FF

Thanks, If it comes out anything like your restorations I'll be very happy.  

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Great to see that you've stuck with Webby, I'm still a relative newby after only 10yrs with my '84 cab (maybe why I haven't named it yet?), looking forward to you posting some progress photos.  I'm sure that it benefitted from the JZM top end overhaul, a great long term investment, however on my 'cab the omission of the small one way valve/restrictor in the crankcase/oil tank breather pipe also caused the engine to stall when the filler cap was removed to check oil level, although fair to say my compression ratios are down a bit on spec on several cylinders. 

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  • 1 month later...

A quick update. A few weeks ago I dropped into autobody technic to have a quick chat about what needs to be done. The car is still on the main floor, surrounded by GT3s waiting for space in the renovation area. Front wings are off and the rear wings stripped. Inner wings aren't too terrible but there were some additional issues.
The first is as I expected.  The front boot floor with suspension mounts will need to be replaced. These means all the suspension will need to come out, thankfully it had all been replaced the day before it went in the shop and because I guessed this would case I didn't even bother torquing up the bolts. Luckily they already have jig to ensure that everything lines up true.
The second was a bit unexpected. We thought the NS rear wing just needed a repair panel, but with the paint stripped back we could see some repair work and filler, the metal has been stretched and could be too thin to accept the repair panel (Forgot to take pictures). A quick call to OPC and the rear NS wing isn't a completely stupid price so it was decided that since the rear screen is already coming out for the respray we may as well replace the whole wing.
     

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A decision need to be made. The wheels need to be freshened up and do I decide to have them matched to the body colour? I've seen similar and I think they look good. What do other people think?

 

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Colour matched wheel centres are very '80s and if that's the look you are after go for it. Personally I prefer naked alloy or the RSR look. Take a look around here and you'll see all styles. Easy DIY job whichever way you go 👍

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  • 2 weeks later...

 

On 20/06/2021 at 11:32, TargaWayne said:

A decision need to be made. The wheels need to be freshened up and do I decide to have them matched to the body colour? I've seen similar and I think they look good. What do other people think?

When I had mine refurbished a couple of years ago, I kept as close as possible to the original finish, i.e. not shiny, but black. At the end of the day, it's your car, your preferences, and what makes you happy is what counts.

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It's a good colour so go with matching.  They'll look black in certain lights anyway.  You can always change them without too much cost or trouble.

I've repainted mine various colours over the years, satin black, silver, orange, naked, early style, etc.  Whatever colour is on that season.

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  • 2 weeks later...
On 20/06/2021 at 11:32, TargaWayne said:

A decision need to be made. The wheels need to be freshened up and do I decide to have them matched to the body colour? I've seen similar and I think they look good. What do other people think?

 

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Now doesn't that look lovely. Out of interest what colour is it?

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1 hour ago, sladey said:

Oof! Do you have a thread for this Johnny?

You need to watch Vintage Voltage for that..............;)

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Who, in their right mind, would buy a 914........................:ninja:

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  • 1 month later...

Quick update, The guys doing the restoration have sent me a stack of photo's and I'm visiting today to go catch up with what's been done. However I thought I'd share a couple of photo's. This is the front floor/suspension mount. 
When I had some accident damage a few years ago, It looks like they just welded in a repair. but didn't treat it properly. Completely rusted through compared to original material.


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