It's one thing to tear off the old parts from a project car and put on the new, but for years we had to make do with refurbishing the old aluminum and stainless trim since either no one reproduced it, or what was made was of poor quality. We've heard horror stories about how the parts didn't fit, didn't match up, or just plain looked bad after being placed on the car. Well, friends and neighbors, we're here to tell you those days are over. We're replacing just about every piece of bright work on our '68 Malibu project vehicle so that it'll look like it just rolled out of the factory.
Spin-offs of the word "restoration," the terms "restification" and "resto-rod" are frequently used when referring to classics, street rods, and musclecars when they're not true restored, stock machines. Obviously, Project Malibu Muscle is not a restoration, but we want most of the trim, inside and out, to look like the Malibus we love.
As many of you have found with your cars, what looks like a complete automobile when you buy it, isn't. The big parts such as fenders and quarters can fool you with tons of filler, etc., but at least there are replacements. We did that with the entire front end. So now that we've done the body and paint, it's time to start putting the trim back on. The longer we look at it, though, the less we want to spend the time taking out dings and dents in delicate pieces of stainless and aluminum. And thanks to environmentalists and various state and federal regulations, re-plating bumpers and other chrome has become prohibitively expensive. Luckily for us, there's Original Parts Group (OPG), and some real experts to help us.
If you haven't opened one of OPG's catalogs, do so. Get a fresh one though, because once you open it, you'll drool over the amazing variety of parts. One of the cool things about OPG's catalog is the illustrations showing what parts you need and where they go on your Chevelle. Maybe you know all that, but for many it's great to have help. By the way, OPG has parts and catalogs for Monte Carlos, GTOs/Tempests, the '64-72 Olds Cutlass/442, and Buick Skylarks/ GS/GSXs-all the cool GM machines.
This month's work covers only the outside, but OPG did us proud with the interior parts also. We'll show you how that goes together next time, along with a couple of exterior parts still on back order.